The suit claims Honda has failed to fix the vehicles' defect and replaced the defective parts with equally defective parts, leaving consumers caught in a cycle of "use, malfunction, and replacement," adding "despite providing the dealership and Honda engineers eight attempts to repair the plaintiffs' vehicle, the vehicle's infotainment systems continues to malfunction."
The lawsuit was filed in the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California. The plaintiffs are Lesley and Tom Conti of Ohio, who are representing themselves and affected owners nationwide.
"We estimate that at least 150,000 affected vehicles were sold during the time-frame in which Honda equipped them with the defective infotainment system," said Steve Berman, managing partner of Hagens Berman Sobol Shapiro, who is representing Honda owners in the lawsuit. The firm shared a video on its YouTube channel of a client's infotainment system malfunctioning while driving.
A Honda spokesman would not comment on the pending litigation. But the automaker, in a document dated April 2019, acknowledged a problem with the 2018-19 Odyssey: "We're currently investigating an issue that when using CabinWatch and the RES (rear entertainment system) is streaming an application or playing a DVD for 10 minutes or more, a 'Camera System Problem. Image cannot be displayed,' message appears on the Display Audio screen. At the same time, the overhead screen freezes, but the audio keeps playing. So far, we know it's software related, so don't replace any components. When we come up with a fix, we'll release an OTA software update."
Berman said the problem acknowledged in the document is "one manifestation [we think] of the defect — so in other words, they've conceded one facet of the problem and acknowledged there's no fix yet."
The lawsuit seeks financial reimbursement for owners who bought or leased an affected Honda Odyssey or Pilot, and it wants the court to bar the automaker from continuing to sell vehicles with what it calls the defective infotainment system.