Mazda and an automotive parts manufacturer were hit with a proposed class action in New York federal court by a driver who claims the companies knew about a dangerously defective fuel pump that could cause vehicles to suddenly shut down but failed to disclose it.
New Yorker Tamerlane T. Bey II, who represents himself, said Mazda knew about the defect for years but didn’t alert the public until a recall in November of about 121,000 vehicles equipped with the fuel pumps made by Denso Corp. Even though the defect can cause cars to suddenly stop, posing a safety risk, Mazda didn’t tell owners to cease driving until the cars were repaired, Bey said.
Additionally, instead of following the industry standard and replacing the entire fuel pump, Mazda told technicians to only replace the fuel pump motor, which is difficult to do and can damage the entire fuel pump and worsen the defect, Bey said.
The defect is a safety problem because a vehicle that suddenly stops is at risk for collision, Bey said. Drivers left stranded on the road are also at risk from other vehicles or inclement weather.
Bey owns a 2018 Mazda 6 that has the allegedly defective fuel pump and, on at least six occasions, the car’s acceleration was interrupted.
In July 2020, Mazda recalled cars with the fuel pump in China, Japan, Thailand, Malaysia, Vietnam and Mexico.
Mazda didn’t recall vehicles with the defective pump in the U.S. then because of “logistic conditions, typical customer usage and other factors.”