— Chrysler 300 and Dodge Charger door panels are coming off and warping to the point a class action lawsuit alleges the automaker should pay the damages.
The lawsuit includes all consumers who currently own or lease, or formerly owned or leased, 2014-2021 Chrysler 300, Dodge Charger or Dodge Daytona cars.
The owner or lessee must have either paid out-of-pocket to repair the panels, or they must have surrendered the vehicle.
Fiat Chrysler (FCA US) allegedly sold the cars while knowing since 2015 the door trim panels would warp or come off. The automaker also allegedly knew owners and lessees would be stuck paying hundreds or possibly thousands of dollars for repairs.
Even if repairs are performed under warranty, the class action alleges Chrysler uses the same defective door panels for replacement parts.
According to the door panel lawsuit, the warped panels cause problems with the side airbags, door locks, anti-theft mechanisms and heating and cooling systems.
Chrysler 300s, Dodge Chargers and Dodge Daytonas lose their values due to the door panels coming off, and owners claim cosmetically the warped panels make the cars look terrible.
The plaintiffs who filed the door panel lawsuit allege the front interior door panels separate and rise next to the windows. However, even the rear door panels can be affected by warping.
Smaller panels also allegedly come off from the center console areas between the front seats, and the dashboards allegedly pull away from the windshields.
Chrysler has allegedly done nothing to fix the door panel problems which are caused during manufacturing. The automaker allegedly continues to conceal defects with the door panels to continue marketing and selling the vehicles.
The door panel class action alleges customers are forced to wait months for replacement panels and repairs, and the plaintiffs claim this is an intentional act by Chrysler.
"Defendant’s goal in refusing to make repairs in a reasonably prompt fashion is obvious: some customers will forgo the repairs, have the repair completed elsewhere, or neglect the repair until their warranties expire, thus saving Defendant the cost of making the in-warranty repairs." - Chrysler door panel lawsuit
According to one of the plaintiffs, she bought a 2016 Chrysler 300C in April 2019, but in February 2020 the front interior door panel lifted up. She initially thought this problem was the result of vandalism and even filed a police report.
When she took the car to Enterprise Car Sales where she purchased the Chrysler 300, she was allegedly told that the door panel problem was common in her model.
She was told the car was outside its warranty, but she says she was able to convince Enterprise to replace the door panel as a one-time courtesy.
Two weeks later all four of her door panels allegedly starting coming off and separating from the frame, even the panel that was just repaired.
She called her insurance company for help, but a Chrysler dealer told the insurance company it would cost thousands of dollars to repair the car and the insurance company denied the plaintiff coverage.
The Chrysler 300 owner says she called Chrysler and was told the automaker wouldn't pay anything, and since then the door panels are still coming off.
According to the plaintiff, the door panels coming off have allowed hot streams of air to come from the interior door cavity and directly into the car. This allegedly makes the interior car temperatures a pain to regulate, and the plaintiff isn't able to transport her daughter to medical appointments.
The plaintiff says the warped Chrysler 300 door panels have caused her to drive as little as possible.
The Chrysler 300, Dodge Charger and Dodge Daytona warped door panel lawsuit was filed in the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California: Johnson, et al., v. FCA US, LLC.
The plaintiffs are represented by Wagstaff & Cartmell LLP, and Webb, Klase & Lemond, LLC.