— A Honda Accord and Crosstour starter motor lawsuit has been filed alleging the starters fail prematurely, costing owners hundreds to thousands of dollars for repairs.
Included in the proposed class-action lawsuit are all consumers in the U.S. (excluding New Jersey) who purchased or leased any 2013-2015 Honda Accord or 2013-2015 Honda Crosstour.
Plaintiff Carolina Martinez says she bought a new 2015 Honda Accord from a dealership in September 2014, but in March 2017 the car failed to start.
The plaintiff says she tried to take the car back to the dealer but was unable to get an appointment. Instead, she brought the Accord to an O’Reilly Auto Parts store where she was told her battery was not producing enough current. Ms. Martinez says she had no choice but to purchase a new battery, spending $151.08 to get the Accord going again.
The plaintiff says even with the new battery, the car still had trouble starting and the engine wouldn't crank when she pushed the START button.
Martinez complained to the dealership that sold her the Accord, and the dealer replaced the starter motor after finding it had failed.
The plaintiff says she and other owners would never have bought the vehicles if Honda would have told them the starter systems would fail prematurely.
In addition, the starter motor problems allegedly cause a risk to safety because occupants are left stranded once the starters fail. Then there are the issues of batteries that drain and wear out early, and dangers associated with vehicles that suddenly slow down without warning.
The Accord and Crosstour lawsuit alleges the starter motor fails due to inadequate clearance between the starter motor’s gear and the engine’s torque converter ring gear (the gear with which the starter meshes to spin the engine).
In addition, Honda allegedly equipped the Accords and Crosstours with small, low-capacity batteries that are prone to premature wear and that lack enough current to power the defective starter motors. As a result, the vehicles can allegedly fail to start or even lose power and stall during operation.
While Accord and Crosstour owners kept buying batteries to try to fix the problems, Honda allegedly concealed the starter problems from those owners and all consumers.
Based on court documents, Honda knew long ago about the starter motor problems based on customer complaints and the fact the automaker had sent bulletins to dealerships about what to do if owners complained.
The lawsuit alleges Honda issued a technical service bulletin (TSB) to dealers in February 2016 informing dealerships about starter motors in 2013-2015 Honda Accords and Crosstours.
The TSB (A16-002) talked about grinding at start-up due to inadequate clearance between the starter motor gear and the torque converter ring gear. The bulletin said to replace the starter motor and to change the position of the ring gear. However, the plaintiff says Accord and Crosstour owners continued to experience vehicles that failed to start and worn out starter motors.
Then in October 2016, Honda issued TSB ATS161003 to its dealers about starter problems in 2013-2016 Honda Accords. The bulletin talked about cars with engines that would crank but not start and also engines that did start but that would then stop. Honda also told its dealers the automaker was aware of the starter problems and was investigating the issues.
The Honda Accord and Crosstour starter motor lawsuit was filed in the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California - Carolina Martinez, et al., v. American Honda Motor Co. Inc.
The plaintiff is represented by Capstone Law APC.
This isn't the first lawsuit that alleges Honda starter motors are defective. A separate class-action complaint claims Honda Accords and Crosstours have starter motors that leave people stranded and batteries dead.
CarComplaints.com has complaints about starter problems in the Honda Accord and Crosstour: