On May 22, 2017, Chimicles & Tikellis LLP (“C&T”), along with its co-counsel, filed the Second Amended Consolidated Class Action Complaint against BMW alleging violations of consumer protection statutes, warranty laws, and other laws relating to BMW’s i3 electric automobile with Range Extenders (“i3 REx”). The Second Amended Consolidated Class Action Complaint was filed following the Court’s previous ruling on a narrow Motion to Dismiss filed by BMW. In that ruling, BMW’s Motion to Dismiss was granted in part and denied in part. BMW had previously sought dismissal of this lawsuit in a separate Motion to Dismiss. Many of Plaintiffs’ claims have survived BMW’s multiple efforts to dismiss this case.
This lawsuit alleges that model year 2014-2016 BMW i3 vehicles equipped with Range Extenders are plagued with a defect that causes the i3 REx to experience sudden deceleration after the vehicle switches from electric battery power to the fuel-powered Range Extender. The Range Extender is a two-cylinder combustion engine that, when added to the vehicle, is supposed to nearly double the mileage that drivers can get out of their i3 vehicles. Drivers of the i3 REx pay a premium for the Range Extender feature, which costs approximately $4,000. The alleged deceleration defect routinely manifests when the electric battery level drops below a certain percentage and commonly occurs when drivers of the i3 REx are attempting to drive uphill or over inclines, but also regularly occurs on flat driving surfaces.
The result is that i3 REx drivers experience loss of acceleration, by as much as 40 m.p.h. by some reports, including on roads and busy highways with high-speed speed limits. This alleged defect poses a danger to owners and lessees of the i3 REx as well as other drivers on the road. Consumer complaints about this defect typically cite a concern for rear-ending and close calls with rear-ending.
C&T serves as a member of the Court-appointed Plaintiffs’ Executive Committee in this litigation. This lawsuit is pending in the United States District Court for the Central District of California. If you have purchased or leased a BMW i3 REx vehicle and have experienced the issues identified above, please contact the lawyers at C&T listed below.