Honda steering wheel

Clay Barnett Will Help Lead Honda Class Action For Plaintiffs

Owners of Honda and Acura vehicles and those leasing them are suing the company because of a problem with Honda’s Idle-Stop System. It is a defect the customers say Honda knew about but did nothing to make work. The defect causes the vehicles’ engines to turn off under certain conditions and won’t allow the engine to restart. The vehicle is stalled and unable to move, increasing the risk of injury.

It is what happened to our client Hamid Bolooki who filed a class action last June in California federal court. On Feb. 21, Judge Mark C. Scarsi, who is overseeing the class action against Honda, appointed Clay Barnett as interim co-lead counsel to help guide the litigation process for the plaintiffs.

Class plaintiffs include those who own or lease 2016-2020 Honda Pilots, Odysseys, Acura TLXs and Acura MDXs with the faulty Idle-Stop feature.

Clay is based out of our Atlanta office and works in our Consumer Fraud & Commercial Litigation Section, where he specializes in automotive defect class actions nationwide.

Clay has developed solid mechanical skills through many years of hands-on vehicle and vessel restoration, and nearly a decade of amateur road course racing in a racecar he maintains. This unique perspective and knowledge help Clay quickly identify defects and prosecute product defect class actions in a way few others can in this area of law.

He has developed defect theories for numerous automotive class actions to benefit our clients and other plaintiffs in class actions against Ford, General Motors (GM), Toyota, Nissan and Volkswagen, to name a few. In October 2022, Clay co-led the trial team that secured a $102.6 million verdict against GM. GM had produced engines with defective piston rings, causing heavy oil consumption, engine wear and tear, increased safety risks and reduced vehicle value.

Our firm has the experience and resources to represent clients nationwide in automotive defect class actions while never losing sight of the individual.

More about the Honda Idle-Stop Defect and Class Action Litigation

The Problem

The Idle-Stop feature in the affected Honda models often fails to restart the engine when the driver releases the brake, causing the unexpected stranding events. Drivers have experienced engine restart failure in dangerous situations, including when merging into fast-moving traffic and navigating busy intersections.

The affected vehicles include 2016-2020 Honda Pilots, Odysseys, Acura TLXs and Acura MDXs.

What is the Idle-Stop System?

The Honda Idle-Stop System is a fuel-saving feature. It turns off the vehicle’s gasoline engine when the computer detects that the vehicle is stopped and idling in gear, such as at a stop light or in a line of traffic. When working correctly, the Idle-Stop feature restarts the engine as the driver releases the brake pedal, allowing the vehicle to move again.

Honda Idle-Stop Class Action

Consumers who own or lease vehicles with the defective feature began filing complaints with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) in 2015. They described the dangers caused by the flawed part. They also claim that Honda knew about the problem but did nothing to fix the defect.

In service records and messages to dealerships, Honda admitted that the feature was defective. Yet, it continued selling vehicles without telling customers about the defect. It also failed to recall vehicles with the dangerous defect. 

We filed the class action in June 2022 in the U.S. District Court of California’s Central District, alleging:

  • Those who purchased or leased the affected vehicles did not know they were paying for a vehicle with a significant and dangerous defect.
  • Honda violated the Florida Deceptive and Unfair Trade Practices and Magnuson-Moss Warranty Acts.
  • Honda committed breach of warranty and fraudulent concealment/omission and was unjustly enriched by selling and leasing the dangerous defective class vehicles.
  • Our client, Mr. Hamid Bolooki, seeks to represent a nationwide class and Florida subclass of consumers who purchased or leased a Honda vehicle affected by the Idle-Stop defect.

Class Actions

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