A class action lawsuit alleges that recalls affecting 2013–2018 Nissan Altima cars have done little to fix faulty hood latches, which allow the hoods to suddenly fly open while the cars are in motion.
The Nissan Altima cars have two types of latches: primary latches inside the vehicles, and secondary latches under the hoods. However, defects allegedly allow the hoods to open while the car is being driven. Though Nissan recalled these vehicles three times, the automaker allegedly can’t fix the cars.
The primary latches allegedly unlatch because of their proximity to the fuel door latches, causing drivers to unlatch the primary latches by accident. When this happens, the secondary latch fails to keep the hood secure.
The recalls, issued between 2014 and 2020, blamed the problem on debris, corrosion, failures in anti-corrosion protection, and the location of the latches themselves. In 2020, Nissan said it knew of 16 minor crashes and injuries related to the alleged defect.
Nissan allegedly blamed the problem on suppliers, rather than employing different designs. As a result, the vehicles’ hood latch systems aren’t up to industry standards.