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Many consumers who have purchased various Chevy models over the last several years have complained of a problem with the transmission that has become known as the “Chevy Shake,” or the “Chevy Shudder.” Unfortunately, despite having known about the issue for years, GM has failed to identify a remedy. The manufacturer is now facing a class action lawsuit over the widespread transmission issues that reportedly affect countless vehicles. Class action settlements can help cover some of the inconvenience caused to you, but it may not be the best option for your specific situation.
Purchasing a Chevy or any car that has issues may not only be an inconvenience, but it can be financially burdensome. If you bought a Chevy Silverado, Colorado, Corvette, Camaro, or other GM vehicle that malfunctions, wobbles, or vibrates when you drive at a certain speed, you might be entitled to a remedy under California’s Lemon Law.
The “Chevy Shake” is a defect that many Chevy owners have experienced when shifting gears, decelerating, or accelerating. According to the allegations in the class action lawsuit that was filed, transmission problems cause the vehicles affected by the issue to shake, jerk, shudder, or hard shift. Not only can these problems make the cars difficult to drive, but it can also cause distraction, loss of vehicle control, and lead to serious accidents. Drivers who have experienced the defect have said it feels as though they have been struck by another vehicle when the issue occurs.
Over a dozen GM vehicles were named in the transmission issues class action lawsuit. Specifically, the vehicles affected by the Chevy transmission defect are those that are equipped with one of two eight-speed automatic transmissions manufactured by GM — the GM 8L90 or 8L45. The transmission defect causes metal shavings in the affected vehicles to circulate through the transmission, causing damage to both the torque converter and transmission itself.
While GM has issued several Technical Service Bulletins over the last several years, the issue has never been fully resolved in the affected vehicles.
The Chevy vehicles affected by the transmission problems have been reported to include the following:
Other GM vehicles may also have defective transmissions, including the 2015-2019 Cadillac Escalade; 2015-2019 Escalade ESV; 2016-2019 Cadillac ATS; 2016-2019 Cadillac ATS-V; 2016-2019 Cadillac CTS; 2016-2019 Cadillac CT6; 2016-2019 Cadillac CTS-V; 2015-2019 GMC Sierra; 2016-2019 GMC Yukon; 2015-2019 Yukon XL; 2015-2017 GMC Sierra; 2015-2019 GMC Yukon Denali; 2015-2019 Yukon Denali XL; and the 2017-2019 GMC Canyon.
Transmission issues alone don’t make a car rise to the level of a lemon under California Lemon Law. In addition, just because a class action lawsuit was filed doesn’t necessarily mean your car is automatically a lemon. But if the transmission problems substantially impair the safety or value of your vehicle — and it cannot be repaired — you might have a claim as long as the vehicle is still under the original manufacturer’s warranty at the time the defect is discovered.
In order to assert your rights under the lemon law, you must first allow the manufacturer a reasonable opportunity to make repairs. Typically, four repair attempts are sufficient, unless the defect could cause a serious safety risk. In such cases, only two repair attempts are necessary. A car may also be a lemon if it was in the repair shop for 30 days or more for transmission problems or another unrepairable defect.
Additionally, it is presumed that your vehicle is a lemon if the defect arose within the first 18 months of delivery or the first 18,000 miles are driven. However, if you think your Chevy might qualify for a replacement or refund under the lemon law, it’s essential to understand that you only have four years from the date you discovered the defect to file a claim.
If a class action lawsuit filed that affects your vehicle, you should carefully consider whether it’s in your best interests to remain a member of the class, or if you should opt-out. By opting out, you can preserve your right to file an individual lemon law claim in the future and potentially recover a greater amount of compensation. But if the make and model of your car was named in the Chevy class action lawsuit — and your vehicle doesn’t otherwise qualify as a lemon — you may at least be entitled to some recovery if you choose not to opt-out and become a recipient of any class action settlements.
Importantly, if you plan to file a lemon law lawsuit, you must opt-out of the class action in writing by the date specified in the settlement notice. Simply not taking action doesn’t mean you’ve opted out. If you do nothing, you will remain part of the class and be bound by the terms of class action settlements.
If you purchased a Chevy with transmission defects, you may be entitled to take legal action. An experienced lemon law attorney can explain your legal rights and advise you concerning the best course of action. The California Lemon Law attorneys at the Ledbetter Law Firm have extensive knowledge regarding Chevy transmission defects and are committed to securing the maximum amount of compensation available for the inconvenience and economic burden you have suffered.
The Ledbetter Law Firm assists clients throughout Southern California who have purchased lemon vehicles in obtaining the refund or replacement they deserve from the manufacturer. With offices conveniently located in Torrance and San Diego, California, telephone and video conferencing options are also available. Call (310) 878-0067 to schedule a consultation with a California Lemon Law attorney today.