Class Action Complaint Filed Against Subaru for Alleged Defective Windshields

Christine Powell has become the lead plaintiff in a class action complaint in New Jersey against Subaru of America (Subaru) alleging the carmaker was “manufacturing, marketing and selling new vehicles with defective and dangerous windshields that were spontaneously and/or unreasonably cracking, chipping and otherwise breaking.” Powell also claims the vehicle manufacturer was aware of its replacement windshields also being defective in her amended complaint. Powell is seeking a trial by jury, as well as compensation for damages and legal fees. Subaru has yet to file a response to Powell’s allegations.

“Powell demands that the defendant [Subaru] accept responsibility for replacing damaged windshields under its new vehicle warranty at no charge to the plaintiff [Powell] and reimburse the plaintiff and for losses suffered as a result of the defect and/or that Subaru be required to buyback the class vehicles,” a portion of the amended complaint reads.

The 2017-2019 Forester and Outback were the vehicle models listed in the complaint. According to Powell, the windshields pose an imminent and significant safety hazard to vehicle operators, the public, and are causing others affected (class members) to incur substantial monetary losses and other damages.

“[Subaru] has been on notice of this defect in the class vehicles for years but has concealed its knowledge from the public and continues to deny the existence of the defect. Complaints of the defect are widespread and have been brought to the defendant’s attention but defendant is forcing consumers to bear the costs and expenses associated with the defect,” a portion of the amended complaint reads.

The class action lawsuit alleges that Subaru refuses to replace its broken windshields under its warranty or to reimburse consumers for the broken windshields and other losses resulting from the defect. However, Powell and other class members claim to have complained to the vehicle manufacturer prior to filing the initial complaint in court. Both also assert claims for breach of express warranty, breach of implied warranty, fraud, breach of the consumer protection statute and unjust enrichment against Subaru.

According to the complaint, on or around August 19, 2017, Powell purchased a new 2018 Subaru Forester and was unaware that the vehicle contained a “defective” windshield. Within a few months after purchasing the Subaru, her windshield cracked suddenly. In December 2017, she took her vehicle to an authorized Subaru dealer. At this time she learned the windshield claim would have to be handled through her insurance company, as Subaru “denied being responsible for the breakage.”

“The plaintiff was advised that Subaru was not replacing broken windshields under the new vehicle warranty that comes with the Class Vehicles. In May 2019, Powell’s vehicle suffered another break in the windshield,” a portion of the amended complaint reads.

According to her complaint, Subaru was made aware of its alleged windshield defect through the National Highway Traffic and Safety Administration (NHTSA), as there were several recall notices issued for the previously mentioned affected vehicle models.

Due to the allegations mentioned in Powell’s amended complaint, she is seeking a trial by jury. As of press time Subaru has yet to respond to the current amended complaint, look to a future edition of glassBYTEs for more information on this suit.

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9 Responses to Class Action Complaint Filed Against Subaru for Alleged Defective Windshields

  1. Joseph Poley says:

    GM had a problem similar to this about 25 years ago. We developed a test to weed out the susceptible windshields. GM was replacing them under warranty, so getting the problem fixed was a high priority.

  2. I bought a new Subaru Outback limited on December eighteen 2019; it was the 2020 model but build in 2019. Coming down on I 25 ln NM I heard a mild noise in my windshield. I checked for a dent or chip. Negative! About 10 miles later a crack developed from the middle and at the base of the windshield and extended vertically and horizontally. Talk to the dealer who told me it was well known about windshield and Subaru. I will write a letter to Subaru and NHTSA.

  3. Kristie Pfaff says:

    On June 30, 2019, I was driving my 2018 Subaru Crosstrek Limited Edition on my way to work. I heard a noise while driving but kept driving since I was just blocks away to work. I parked in the monitored parking lot and visually looked inside and outside my car for some indication of where the noise came from, including the windshield from the inside and outside. I saw no cracks to the windshield or other area of the vehicle. It was hot outside (90’s).I went in to work. When I got off work I went out to my car. I got inside my car, immediately noticing a 6-8 inch long crack on the driver’s side of the front windshield. I went home in shock about the large crack in my windshield. I later contacted my insurance company, and was told my deductible and to call around to find quotes on replacement. I was told by all the auto shops including my local Subaru dealer the entire windshield would need replaced but the car was so new that they didn’t have the parts in stock and didn’t know how long it would be since the car was so new. I didn’t get the windshield replaced .I felt that Subaru should be responsible for a new windshield as the car was only purchased new 9 months before. I did not have the money to go through my insurance at the time and I was told by my local dealer that Subaru did not cover the windshield in the warranty on the car. However, I believe the defect of the windshield prevents the safe and proper operation of the vehicle because Subaru’s EyeSight safety system, intended to prevent collisions, is attached to the inside of the upper windshield. I did research online at the time if other owners had complaints, but the car was so new I only found one. Now, a search reveals many complaints of defective windshields and a class action lawsuit. I worry about my safety still and I believe Subaru should be held accountable for the replacement of the windshield.

  4. Gary Halsel says:

    I have similar problem with my 2018 Foresters How does one add themselves to the list of plaintiffs ?

  5. Borian Stoichkov says:

    Brand new 2020 suburu outback replaced windshield a week ago today a tiny pebble hit the new windshield and in about 30 seconds the windshield cracked half way across. My wife and I couldn’t believe what we witnessed. How do we get in on the class action lawsuit? Because I can see that when we replace this one the same thing will happen>

  6. Noel DelRe says:

    2017 Impreza Sport on my second windshield and even the manufacturer approved placement has 4 chips in it. Replacement is about $1000 for glass and camera calibration. I’m disgusted

  7. Pingback: Judge Issues Order in Class Action Suit | glassBYTEs.com

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