— A Toyota fuel pump class action lawsuit has been filed to include all vehicles equipped with Denso fuel pumps with part numbers that begin with 23220 or 23221.
In addition to stalled engines, fuel pump failures can cause warning lights to illuminate, rough running engines and vehicles unable to be restarted.
The class action alleges recent Toyota fuel pump recalls were a waste of time and have done nothing but force customers to wait for repairs.
California plaintiff Tina Feng leased a new 2019 Lexus RC 350 in February 2019, but she says the vehicle has been recalled because it is equipped with a defective fuel pump. Feng says Toyota didn't tell her the vehicle was defective and unable to provide safe transportation.
The plaintiff says she took the Lexus to a dealership after receiving a fuel pump recall notice, but Feng says she was told no known repair existed and the dealer didn't know when repairs would be available.
A loaner vehicle was provided to the plaintiff, but she says it was a Kia and of lesser quality than her Lexus. The plaintiff was allegedly told to continue making lease payments according to the terms of the lease.
To avoid making a lease payment while her Lexus was parked, she would allegedly have to make a $100 monthly payment each month she wished to defer payment. However, this would also allegedly extend her lease term by an additional month for each deferral.
The plaintiff argues Toyota customers were being forced to pay for the privilege of extending a lease for an unsafe vehicle.
Feng says the fuel pump recalls have made all affected Toyota and Lexus vehicles lose their values. And Toyota allegedly must have known about the defective fuel pumps based on more than 2,570 warranty claims and numerous complaints about stalled engines.
In January 2020, Toyota issued a recall of nearly 700,000 vehicles in the U.S. because the Denso fuel pumps could fail and cause the engines to stall. The recall was expanded to about 1.8 million Toyota and Lexus vehicles in March, but the same problem was at the heart of both recalls.
Toyota told the government an impeller inside the fuel pump could absorb too much fuel and deform, possibly allowing contact with the body of the fuel pump.
According to the fuel pump class action, drivers and occupants are exposed to injuries or deaths if the vehicles suddenly stall while driving. Drivers will also suddenly lose the ability to get their vehicles to safe areas off the roads.
The plaintiff alleges vehicles equipped Denso fuel pumps make the vehicles ticking time bombs at the expense of consumers while the automaker pockets millions of dollars.
The Toyota fuel pump class action lawsuit was filed in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of California: Feng, et al., v. Toyota Motor North America, Inc., et al.
The plaintiff is represented by Finkelstein & Krinsk LLP.