Consumer groups are calling on California’s attorney general to investigate
whether CarMax is selling recalled vehicles that have not been repaired.
The groups maintain that the sales practice directly conflicts with the
used car dealer’s advertising claims that all vehicles undergo extensive
Los Angeles Times reports, the California Public Interest Research Group and the Consumers for Auto
Reliability and Safety Foundation visited two CarMax locations in California
and recorded the vehicle identification numbers of the vehicles for sale.
They then used the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s
recall database to determine whether a vehicle was recalled and if it
had been fixed.
As San Diego injury lawyers, the results are concerning. The consumer groups
found that 10 percent of the 455 vehicles at the Oxnard CarMax had outstanding
recalls. At the Sacramento store, 9 percent of the 386 vehicles had unrepaired
recalls. Some vehicles had more than one known safety defect, which ranged
from faulty airbags to doors that could spring open while driving.
“All of these safety defects pose serious risks to CarMax customers
and the general public when the defective cars are driven on California
roads,” the California Public Interest Research Group and the Consumers
for Auto Reliability and Safety Foundation stated in their report. They
called on the attorney general and the California Department of Motor
Vehicles to investigate whether the used car seller is violating any laws.
As we have previously discussed on this San Diego Injury Blog, auto dealers
are prohibited from selling new vehicles that are subject to a safety
recall; however, there is not a similar restriction for used cars. California
also does not bar used car dealers from selling unrepaired vehicles.
In this case, the consumer groups maintain that CarMax’s practice
of selling “certified” vehicles with known defects could violate
a variety of California laws and motor vehicle regulations. Given the
potential injury risk associated with driving a defective vehicle, we
will be closely following the investigation and will post updates as they
If you or someone you love has been seriously injured by a dangerous or
defective motor vehicle, don’t hesitate to
contacta San Diego product liability attorney at the Law Offices of Robert Vaage for a free consultation.