California Lemon Law News + Info

Honda Automatic Emergency Braking Incidents Investigated

Phantom braking caused by Honda’s Automatic Emergency Braking systems have prompted an investigation into more than 250,000 Honda Passport and Honda Insight vehicles.

The Office of Defects Investigation (ODI) received 46 complaints and numerous field reports alleging that the Automatic Emergency Braking (AEB) system activated at random in 2019-2022 Honda Passport SUVs and 2019-2022 Honda Insight cars. According to the ODI Resume, the AEB system will activate even when there is no obstruction in the vehicle’s path. This causes vehicle deceleration and phantom braking that can increase the risk of an injury-causing collision. Often, these incidents happen without warning. NHTSA estimates that the investigation involves a population of 250,712 Honda Passport SUVs and Honda Insight cars.

This isn’t the first time Honda’s phantom braking issue has prompted action. Honda’s Collision Mitigation Braking system defects resulted in class action lawsuits alleging that recent model year Honda Accord, Honda CR-V and Honda Pilot vehicles brake at random and detect obstacles that aren’t actually there.

The Office of Defects Investigation opened the Preliminary Evaluation to determine the scope and severity of Honda’s AEB problems. The results of the broader investigation can determine if a recall is needed.

2019-2022 Honda Passport AEB Complaints

We have compiled a sample of these Honda Passport AEB complaints, which are available to view on NHTSA’s website.

Please note that the complaints on the Honda Passport AEB issues have been edited for grammar and clarity.

“This has been happening from the beginning of ownership. There was a recent recall but it DID NOT fix the problem. I come to a stop, and then start to go and my car stalls out for a second and then restart. Every time I took it into the service center, they said they can’t recreate it and there’s nothing wrong. As it stalls, the ‘collision mitigation system’ warning light comes on. I have almost been rear-ended many times and it’s really scary. You can see all the complaints online for this same problem but Honda is not acknowledging the problem. Someone is going to get seriously hurt. The contact stated that Honda told them to get a video of the failure happening but the failure occurs unexpectedly and while driving.”

2019 Honda Passport, March 10, 2023

“My Honda Passport will trigger false forward collision alarms randomly, and for no reason. As the BRAKE warning appears, the steering wheel vibrates. This happens for no apparent reason. It is distracting and if the brakes apply, very dangerous. My dealership says this is normal. It is not normal or safe.”

2019 Honda Passport, February 27, 2023

“Forward Collision Warning (FCW): At random intervals, the FCW will give a false positive warning of an imminent collision with a car approaching from the opposite direction. This has occurred at various times over the past 2+ years. Comments to this effect to the Honda service representatives have indicated that this anomaly has been reported previously. They have not provided a fix or software update to correct this issue. The event is a safety issue because of the distraction from focusing on the road ahead. Although the automatic braking system has not been employed, the driver may in response to the false warning apply the brakes and cause an accident inadvertently.”

2021 Honda Passport, August 22, 2023

“Vehicle intermittently applies front collision system braking on curves and on highway. It is very unsafe and have almost been rear ended multiple times due to front collisions system engaging and applying brakes. Vehicle front collision system applies brakes randomly and with no vehicles or obstacles in site. This happens during various speeds anywhere from 30- 50mph in city and 60-75mph on highways (car is unpredictable and unsafe).”

2022 Honda Passport, November 22, 2022

2019-2022 Honda Insight AEB Complaints

We have compiled a sample of these Honda Passport AEB complaints, which are available to view on NHTSA’s website.

Please note that the complaints on the Honda Passport AEB issues have been edited for grammar and clarity.

“I was driving down the street and a car slowed down way in front of me. While I was braking my automatic braking system turned on and brought me to a complete stop. This caused my car to get hit from the back. The automatic braking does not slow down the car, it brings the car to a complete stop. Another incident, I was driving on the highway with nothing was in front of me and the brake signal started flashing and slowing the car down.”

2019 Honda Insight, June 2, 2022

“I have had 2 occasions when I experienced inadvertent spontaneous braking. Both times there was no vehicle in front of me. Both times the car stopped completely while driving in the city between 25 to 35 mph. Fortunately there was no vehicle behind me either time and I did not sustain any injuries.”

2020 Honda Insight, March 10, 2022

“I have had 6 times where the collision warning has slammed on the brakes when there is no vehicles on the road in front of me. This is very dangerous when vehicles are behind you. I’m afraid that this car is going to cause a wreck and get me and my wife hurt. A device that is supposed to help you has the ability to get you hurt. The dealer said that they were unable to get it to do it, and that if I was afraid of it that I could turn it off. Doesn’t that defeat the purpose of getting it in the first place. I think Honda is just trying to sweep it under the table. Who knows how many other vehicles they have out there with this problem.”

2021 Honda Insight, April 19, 2022

“I was driving 45 mph on a straight 4 lane undivided road with no cars in front of me or in the oncoming lanes. I was maintaining speed and the vehicle engaged the emergency braking system. The visual and audible alerts went off and with extreme braking force slowed the vehicle down to 10 mph with no obstacles in the roadway. There were no road hazards that would necessitate the system to engage. The trailing vehicles, at highway speed, had to swerve into oncoming traffic to avoid rear ending me and I was unable to override the system to maintain speed. I’ve taken the vehicle to a Honda dealer and they were unable to find any fault codes in the system.”

2022 Honda Insight, August 8, 2022

Have Honda AEB or Phantom Braking Problems?

Contact our Honda lemon law attorneys for a free consultation. If your Honda has repeated braking issues that your local dealership cannot fix, you may be entitled to a vehicle replacement or a Honda lemon law buyback.

Lemon Law Help by Knight Law Group is an automotive lemon law firm that exclusively practices in California. If you are a California resident who purchased or leased a defective vehicle from a licensed dealership in California, we may be able to help you get rid of your potential lemon and recover significant cash compensation. Model year restrictions apply: 2017–Present vehicle models only.

However, we cannot help those who reside outside of California or purchased their vehicle outside of California unless they are active duty members of the Armed Forces, nor will we be able to refer those to a lemon law firm in their states.

To learn more about the California Lemon Law and your legal rights, visit our guides on the California Lemon Law and Used Car Lemon Law for more information.

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