In a new report by Bloomberg, it is alleged that several car rental companies warned General Motors (GM) nearly seven years ago about a potential defect in their Chevy Cobalt model.
The investigation claims that Vanguard Car Rental USA, Inc. notified GM in 2006 about a fatal collision involving a Chevy Cobtalt wherein the airbag failed to deploy.
Using customer-service call transcripts, warranty records and even police reports, Bloomberg found that Enterprise Holdings Inc. pressed GM about a potential defect after airbags failed to deploy in routine crashes. Avis Budget Group and Hertz also had Cobalts in their rental fleet that had crashed.
In 2005, a woman and her ex-husband were killed in a car crash after the driver lost control of a Saturn Ion she had rented from Enterprise. Shortly thereafter, Enterprise asked GM to investigate and inspect the vehicle.
In January 2006, a police report indicated that the airbags of a Chevrolet Cobalt rented form Enterprise did not deploy after the vehicle slipped off the road and slammed into a tree. The driver was killed upon impact. The decedent’s family requested that the vehicle be inspected for a potential problem after they found out the airbag did not deploy.
Although there was an effort to gather information about the accidents, there was never enough evidence to open a formal defect investigation. It has been estimated that nine fatal collisions, wherein the airbags failed to deploy, involved a GM vehicle that had been rented.
To learn more about the GM recall investigation, visit our GM Recall Timeline and News Updates page.
If you or someone you love has been injured in a motor vehicle accident caused by a defect, the legal time at The Eichholz Law Firm can help you seek justice.