— A Hyundai oil pump recall caused a vehicle owner to file a class action lawsuit which alleges the oil pump recall won't fix the vehicles.
In August 2023, Hyundai announced a recall of 52,000 of these vehicles in the U.S.
- 2023-2024 Hyundai Palisade
- 2023 Hyundai Tucson
- 2023 Hyundai Sonata
- 2023 Hyundai Elantra
- 2023 Hyundai Kona
Hyundai says 1% or less of the vehicles may be affected by faulty oil pumps. In addition, out of 52,000 vehicles, Hyundai is aware of four "thermal" incidents.
The automaker says an owner may continue to drive their vehicle, but the vehicle should be parked outside until repaired.
South Carolina plaintiff John Franz purchased a 2023 Hyundai Tucson in April 2023, a vehicle which currently has about 3,100 miles on the odometer.
The plaintiff says he learned about the oil pump recall on "social media" and has never been informed of any recall by Hyundai. This makes sense because federal safety regulators authorized a September 25, 2023, date for Hyundai to notify vehicle owners.
Even though his vehicle has not been repaired, the plaintiff says the repairs/replacements won't fix anything. And even though Hyundai is replacing the oil pump components for free with updated parts, the plaintiff says there is no guarantee the replacement oil pump components won't fail.
According to the plaintiff, "any fixes to this vehicle are no more than temporary solutions to a faulty vehicle."
Although the plaintiff filed the Hyundai oil pump class action lawsuit for more than $5 million, the plaintiff doesn't allege his oil pump had any problems. But the plaintiff contends his vehicle will now be worth less even if the recall repairs fix the alleged problem.
According to Hyundai:
"[T]he electric oil pump controller used in the vehicle’s Idle Stop & Go (“ISG”) system was produced with printed circuit boards containing damaged capacitors due to improper manufacturing by the Tier 2 supplier of the controller. The damaged capacitors could create abnormal electrical activity that may generate heat and damage the controller PCB in addition to its wire harness and connector."
Though Hyundai explained to the government the root cause of the oil pump problem, the plaintiff argues the recall "is no more than a repeatedly ineffective waste of time, because there is no true fix for the Oil Pump Defect."
According to the plaintiff:
"Unless Defendant issues a more comprehensive recall to fix the root cause of the Oil Pump Defect, it is foreseeable, and should be expected, that the Class Vehicles' oil circulation systems will fail once again."
The plaintiff also filed the lawsuit because of the time it will take Hyundai to replace the oil pump components.
"Transitioning back to the repair itself, repairing the oil pump will take a minimum of four hours, and may take up to eight hours. This means that it will take Defendant a minimum of 364,000 hours, and up to 712,800 hours, to repair all recalled vehicles. This amounts to a range of 41 to 83 years." — Hyundai lawsuit
And the plaintiff says he will also be burdened by a "repair-related commute [that] is roughly a 45-minute drive via I-85."
But then the plaintiff asserts he will get hit with a towing bill.
"In addition to the sheer amount of time spent in repairing his vehicle, Plaintiff faces another major expense: the price of towing his vehicle. The average cost of towing, per mile, is $4.75 per mile. Given Plaintiff's roughly 35-mile commute, Plaintiff will have to pay $166.75 to have his Class Vehicle safely transported from his home in Gaffney, S.C. to Spartanburg, S.C. for repairs."
In documents filed with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, Hyundai says owners will be reimbursed for recall-related expenses, and concerned customers may request a rental vehicle.
"A Service Rental Vehicle (SRC) should be provided to customers who do not feel safe operating their vehicle until a remedy is available." — Hyundai
The Hyundai lawsuit goes on:
"Given the additional time it takes for a tow truck to arrive, roughly thirty minutes, Plaintiff will spend one-and one-half hours solely on transporting his vehicle—unless, of course, one is to assume that Plaintiff drives his combustible and (given the other flammable elements contained in cars) explosive Class Vehicle to the dealership."
And according to the Hyundai oil pump lawsuit:
"In all, Defendant's Recall amounts to tens of thousands of hours and dollars needlessly taken from Plaintiff and other Class Vehicle owners."
The Hyundai oil pump class action lawsuit was filed in the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California (Western Division): John Franz v. Hyundai Motor America.
The plaintiff is represented by Poulin | Willey | Anastopoulo.