Ninth Circuit revives product defect claims over “tire eating” Ford Focus

Last week, the Ninth Circuit reversed a grant of summary judgment to Ford in a class action seeking damages for a latent defect in the Ford Focus's rear suspension from 2005 to 2011. The defect allegedly causes "premature tire wear, which in turn leads to safety hazards such as decreased control in handling, steering, stability, and braking, the threat of catastrophic tire failure, and drifting while driving on wet or snow-covered roads." The key legal holding of the court of appeals was that the one year time limit for California's implied warranty of merchantability does not apply to latent defects. The decision in Daniel v. Ford Motor Co. is available here. Courthouse News Service has coverage.

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