The Current GM Recall May Not Be Enough — That’s Why We Have Requested Expedited Discovery In the GM Faulty Ignition Lawsuit

April 11, 2014  |  Class Actions


The affected vehicles include the Pontiac Solstice, the Pontiac G5, the Saturn Sky, the Saturn Ion, the Chevy Cobalt and the Chevy HHR.

If you or someone you know was injured in a car wreck while driving in one of the recalled GM vehicles, please contact one of our lawyers at 818-839-2320 or email us here as soon as you can.

GM has repeatedly told the public that the vehicles with defective ignition switches involved in the GM recall are safe to drive once the driver removes all objects from the ignition key.

Unfortunately, reports from both drivers of these defective vehicles and from GM’s own recall notices contradict this assertion. While GM says that their defective vehicles are safe to drive with all objects removed from the ignition key, all signs point to a different reality: that the recalled vehicles may be unsafe to drive whether or not the driver removes objects from the ignition key.

That’s because, while so much attention has been paid to the inner workings of faulty ignition switch, the truth is the entire ignition switch system, or the GM "Key System," may be flawed. And as any good engineer will tell you, a solution to one part of the problem is not sufficient unless the solution considers, and addresses, the entire problem.

Here’s the entire problem with the GM Key System:

In addition to the faulty ignition switch, the ignition switch system also involves at least two other possible design flaws. One design flaw appears to be the lock module, which was placed within the steering column, thus enabling the lock module to be easily bumped by drivers’ knees (i.e., perhaps one of those "jarring" conditions mentioned in GM announcements). Another design flaw appears to be the ignition key — you’ve been hearing about this one a little bit — which has a slot for a key ring at the top, thus increasing the amount of power or force that items on the key chain may exert on the key. Combine this with the defective lock module itself, a lock module that requires minimal effort to move the key, and the threat of serious safety risks to drivers is clear. Because of the faulty Key System design as a whole, the risk of the ignition switch moving out of the "run" (or "on" position) and into the "off" position during operation is significant. And when this change in position occurs, critical safety features are lost along with the engine power: airbags, power steering and power brakes — you know, the features you depend on to save your life should something bad happen.

And so far as the Key System is concerned, the problem is two-pronged: First, because of the faulty Key System, drivers may be more likely to crash (what else can you expect to happen when your car effectively turns off while you are driving on a highway?) and Second, those safety features you count on all but disappear along with the engine and electrical power, meaning you are prone to serious injuries or death should you be involved in a car wreck.

When you think of what is really going on, how these seriously defective GM vehicles are still on the road today, you can’t help but think that some people may be driving down highways in a ticking time bomb. The issue is that with the recall, these people may think that they are safe now, because they had the ignition switch replaced or because they took all of the excessive objects off of their key ring.

But you may not be safe yet, and those ticking time bomb cars may need to be addressed in a more serious way.

Along with co-counsel, Baron and Budd has requested expedited discovery this week in the hopes of getting to the bottom of your safety and the GM faulty ignition lawsuit quickly. Baron and Budd was one of the first firms to file a lawsuit against GM regarding the faulty ignition switches, thus helping to initiate a more comprehensive recall. In addition, Baron and Budd lawyers are the only lawyers in California at this time and the first lawyers in the country to purse this expedited course of legal action on behalf of a consumer class.

All things point to the reality that high-level GM officials have known of the defective Key System design for some time — perhaps as early as 2001, and that, instead of addressing the issue head-on and in turn saving lives and perhaps countless car wrecks, these high-level GM officials instead engaged in a cover-up, one that took the safety of GM drivers for granted. We allege that GM’s actions were aligned with dollars over human life — and their deception was not just unacceptable, but as some members of Congress have stated, criminal.

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