GM Transmission Lawsuit Partly Dismissed: The Saga Continues

A GM transmission lawsuit has hit a snag after a judge dismissed certain implied warranty claims made in the filing. Five separate class-action lawsuits filed against General Motors were consolidated in a Michigan court, with vehicle owners alleging the Hydra-Matic 8L90 and 8L45 transmissions are defective.

According to the GM transmission lawsuit, the following vehicles have transmissions that slip, shift into gear aggressively and also cause the vehicle to shudder or jerk.

  • 2015-2019 Chevrolet Silverado
  • 2017-2019 Chevrolet Colorado
  • 2015-2019 Chevrolet Corvette
  • 2016-2019 Chevrolet Camaro
  • 2015-2019 Cadillac Escalade and 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
  • 2015-2019 GMC Yukon
  • 2015-2019 GMC Yukon XL
  • 2015-2019 GMC Yukon Denali XL
  • 2017-2019 GMC Canyon

In 2014, GM began using 8-speed 8L90 and 8L45 automatic transmissions in certain vehicles which cause slip gears, shift into gear aggressively and also cause the vehicle to shudder or jerk. Plaintiffs also reported that the transmission will lead to delayed acceleration and make it more difficult for the vehicle to slow down.

As per the lawsuit, the plaintiff claimed the problem cannot be fixed only with transmission replacement, and driving the unrepaired vehicles causes safety hazards. 

“Drivers attempting to accelerate or decelerate their cars feel a hesitation, followed by a significant shake, shudder, jerk, clunk, or ‘hard shift’ when the vehicle’s automatic transmission changes gears.”

The lawsuit also references technical service bulletin issues by general motors based on transmission complaints made by drivers but GM dealerships allegedly tell owners the vehicles are operating properly.

Motion to Dismiss the GM Transmission Lawsuit

GM has argued that all the claims should be thrown out, including express warranty claims as warranty only covers defects that relate to materials and workmanship, and not design defects. The automaker says that all 8L45E and 8L90E transmissions have problems related to design defects, something not covered by the warranty.

Though the judge has said most of the lawsuit allegations can move forward, there are two items that were dismissed:

  • A claim for class-wide money damages under the Colorado Consumer Protection Act
  • Implied warranty claims of all plaintiffs under the laws of Alabama, Arizona, Connecticut, Idaho, Kentucky, North Carolina, Tennessee, Washington, and Wisconsin

The judge disagreed with the automaker and said customers expect a safe and reliable vehicle and didn’t dismiss other allegations.

Also, the judge did not dismiss claims that GM knew there were issues with the eight-speed transmission before it put affected vehicles on sale.

“At this early pleading stage, based on all of the facts noted above, plaintiff-favorable plausible inferences may be drawn that GM had substantial knowledge about the looming problems with its new transmissions before any of the plaintiffs’ purchases were made.” Judge Lawson

The bottom line on the GM transmission lawsuit

We will keep you updated on this lawsuit, final resolution may take some time. However, it doesn’t look like it’s going to end well for GM as the judge specifically stated “plausible inferences may be drawn that GM had substantial knowledge.” 

Final Thoughts

If you are an automobile owner and have manufacturing issues, you can contact us regarding your involvement in this potential class-action lawsuit. Serious vehicle problems require serious legal representation, especially when you are bringing a claim against a major automaker. 

At the Lemon Firm, our experienced California Consumer Attorneys have been able to successfully recover compensation for our clients who were sold a vehicle that did not perform as intended and we can do the same for you. Our experienced attorneys can be reached by calling (833) Lemon-Firm.