The Jeep Grand Cherokee is an American off-road vehicle. It was designed for rugged use on rough terrain. It was also designed with a high-performance engine to deliver tons of power from the inside of the vehicle to help the driver reach top speeds with minimal effort. Most Grand Cherokee owners swear by the vehicle. However, recently there have been some serious off-road accidents that have injured several people and caused more than a few lawsuits involving this very popular vehicle.
A Jeep Grand Cherokee lawsuit was filed in January of this year in Federal Court in Phoenix, Arizona against Ford Motor Company, the North American Automobile Assn’t Association, and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. The suit names as defendants: John Lawn, Executive Vice President of Global Automotive Printing & Imaging Inc; Joseph Lora, President of Lora Marketing; and Michael P. Deming, President of Deming International, all of whom are named individually in the complaint. Apparently, not only is the Grand Cherokee currently susceptible to major mechanical failures but it has also been found to be defective in numerous areas. In addition to being the subject of numerous major recalls and injuries, it is being sold on the open market with a manufacturer’s suggested retail price of more than a thousand dollars. These problems are detailed in the lawsuit and have resulted in significant monetary damages.
According to the complaint, the Jeep Grand Cherokee was manufactured in 2021, which is within seconds of the date of its proposed recall for the model year.
On the day of its release, it was discovered that the Jeep Grand Cherokee’s fifth-row seat had improperly been positioned forward of the driver’s seat, which created a condition where the airbag did not deploy as it should have in the event of an accident. This issue, which came to light within seconds of the vehicle’s release, has led to significant injuries, some of which required surgery. In addition, the airbags did not deploy in multiple instances throughout the vehicle’s lifetime, as required by federal regulations.
Plaintiffs allege that these defects, together with the manufacturing and sale of the vehicle at significant profits, constitute deliberate defects and damages. The complaint further alleges that the defendant did not take reasonable steps to correct the defects and did nothing to mitigate the likelihood of serious injury or death occurring. The defendants deny all charges of negligence and have filed a motion to dismiss the class-action lawsuit. A hearing on this motion is scheduled for later this month. It is highly unlikely that the defendant will overcome the defense that their products are safe, especially considering the prevalence of side airbags among other safety features that have been implemented since the Grand Cherokee was released.
According to the plaintiffs’ attorney, there are several instances in which the Grand Cherokee has been recalled in recent years.
In each instance, the recall resulted in a limited number of vehicles that were affected, with a majority of those vehicles having a faulty shifter design. Plaintiffs argue that this flaw constitutes both a moral and legal duty to warn the public. If a manufacturer does not take reasonable action to repair a product liability case, such as a defective shifter design, a plaintiff may be able to file a wrongful death suit against the manufacturer. As additional compensation for their losses, families of victims can pursue financial compensation by seeking damages for lost wages and funeral expenses incurred due to the victim’s death.
The case was filed in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California, but the lawsuit was subsequently transferred to the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Florida after the parties failed to agree on a date for trial. The new court date will be scheduled for trial within one year of the date the original lawsuit was filed. An agreement was signed many weeks ago. The new agreement will allow the plaintiffs to recover their damages in some months instead of a few years. Plaintiffs are hopeful that this new agreement will close the case.