Plaintiff and the class members she proposes to represent are owners or lessees of 2011- 2015 Hyundai Sonatas that were manufactured with an undisclosed defect in the engine’s rotating assembly. The rotating assembly cannot withstand the long-term stress generated within the Sonata’s combustion chambers and fails within the useful life of the engine (most failures occur between 60,000 to 90,000 miles). When the rotating assembly fails, it does so without warning and causes the engine to seize suddenly—leaving Sonata drivers without power and struggling to maneuver the vehicle to safety.
As alleged, rather than addressing this safety problem by warning drivers and recalling its dangerous vehicles, Hyundai has concealed the problem from consumers and implemented a concerted practice of denying warranty coverage for failed engines. Hyundai tells Sonata owners that they must submit a complete record of the vehicle’s maintenance history before making a warranty claim—even though it knows that Sonata engines fail regardless of owner maintenance and that the faulty rotating assembly is responsible. For those warranty claims that are submitted, Hyundai’s practice is to deny them based on inadequate maintenance records or improper maintenance. Hyundai denies that engine failures are widespread in Sonata vehicles and blames its customers for the problem—forcing them to pay as much as $10,000 for an engine replacement.
Plaintiff seeks to certify a class action against Hyundai for violating California’s consumer protection laws. Among other things, Plaintiff seeks an order requiring Hyundai to immediately disclose the existence of the rotating assembly defect and its associated risks to all existing and prospective customers, to repair the defect and all resulting damage in Sonata vehicles free of charge, and to cease selling Sonatas through its dealerships until the defect is repaired.