— A Honda fuel pump class action lawsuit has been filed against the automaker and pump manufacturer DENSO, alleging all 2013-2019 Honda vehicles equipped with the fuel pumps are defective.
The Honda owner who filed the lawsuit says he owns a 2016 Honda Accord which he purchased used when the car had about 18,000 miles on it.
The lawsuit doesn't allege the Accord suffered any fuel pump problems, but the plaintiff claims he "purchased a vehicle of lesser standard, grade, and quality than represented, and he did not receive a vehicle that met ordinary and reasonable consumer expectations regarding safe and reliable operation. The Fuel Pump Defect has significantly diminished the value of Plaintiff Oliver’s Class Vehicle."
According to the class action lawsuit, Honda "unquestionably knew" the DENSO fuel pumps were defective because Honda recalled about 437,000 vehicles because of fuel pump problems.
Honda said the 2019 recall was issued because mechanical resistance could cause acceleration and stalling problems in 2016-2018 Acura MDX, 2015-2019 Acura TLX and 2015-2017 Honda Accord vehicles equipped with 3.5-liter V6 engines.
The automaker told the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) that sodium particulates found in gasoline can stick to internal components in the fuel pumps, increasing resistance and causing reduced performance.
Honda said the pumps could cause the vehicles to stall in areas of high temperatures, but no crashes or injuries had been reported. In addition, dealers were told to update the fuel injection engine control unit software, and if the engine had stalled the fuel pump would be replaced.
But the lawsuit alleges Honda misdiagnosed the DENSO fuel pump problem and recall repairs failed to fix the vehicles.
The plaintiff says Honda shouldn't have failed to accurately diagnose the fuel pump problem and the automaker failed to include all affected vehicles. Additionally, Honda should have told customers to stop driving their vehicles until the fuel pump problems were repaired.
DENSO recalled more than 2 million fuel pumps a few weeks ago because of problems associated with the impellers. The low-pressure fuel pumps can fail due to the impellers that may absorb fuel, causing the impellers to deform.
A deformed impeller can strike the body of the fuel pump and cause the pump to fail and leave a driver stranded and unable to restart the vehicle.
DENSO says the impellers were exposed to solvent drying, and because the impellers are of lower density they can crack and deform when fuel is absorbed.
The DENSO recall is an alleged admission the fuel pumps in the Honda vehicles "presents an immediate and unreasonable risk of serious harm when the fuel pumps are used in their intended, foreseeable, and ordinary purpose."
The plaintiff alleges Honda occupants are exposed to extreme danger and death if a vehicle stalls from a failed DENSO fuel pump. And even if the pump doesn't completely fail, a driver can be blocked from accelerating when necessary as warning lights illuminate on the instrument panel.
Honda owners and lessees are allegedly still driving vehicles that are "potentially ticking time bombs." The DENSO fuel pump recall has also allegedly decreased the resale values of the vehicles.
The Honda fuel pump class action lawsuit was filed in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Alabama, North Eastern Division: Oliver, et al., v. Honda Motor Company Limited, et al.
The plaintiff is represented by Beasley, Allen, Crow, Methvin, Portis & Miles, P.C.