Nissan Motors Inc. is now defending a new class action lawsuit claiming that its new automated forward emergency braking system (FEB) has a design defect. The lawsuits assert that the Nissan FEB system alerts for obstacles in the road that are not actually there, causing the braking system to suddenly engage for no reason. The lawsuits are being filed by individuals who suffered significant physical injuries as a result of the defective Nissan brake system.
About the Nissan Forward Emergency Braking System
In 2019, Nissan unveiled a new smart braking system safety feature called its Forward Emergency Braking System (“FEB”), that was featured in every class of vehicle. The FEB uses radar technology to scan the road ahead for other vehicles or objects. The FEB radar is supposed to detect if the vehicle is about to collide with something, then automatically engage the brakes to prevent a collision. Its basically an emergency automatic stopping system.
The FEB system at issue in the lawsuits can be found in the following Nissan vehicles: 2019-2021 Maxima, 2020-2021 Sentra, 2020-21 Versa, 2017-2021 Rogue Sport, 2019-2021 Altima, 2020-2021 Kicks, 2017-2020 Rogue, 2021 Armada, 2018-2021 Leaf, 2019-2021 Murano, 2020-2021 Titan.
Problems With the Nissan FEB Brake System
Soon after Nissan’s new FEB brake system came out, Nissan owners started experiencing major problems with it. The Nissan FEB brake system commonly malfunctioned in two different ways: (1) the FEB radar scanning system detected non-existent objects, automatically triggering the brakes and causing the vehicle to abruptly slow down or come to a complete stop with no actual need to do so; and (2) the FEB system spontaneously deactivates itself thereby distracting the driver and rendering the FEB system disabled and useless.
When either of these malfunctions occur, the Nissan FEB system goes from being a safety feature, to being an unpredictable and unreasonable safety hazard. The defects in the FEB system can cause Nissan vehicles to stop without warning during normal and intended vehicle operation, thereby posing an unreasonable safety hazard to drivers, passengers, other motorists, and pedestrians. Nissan drivers who experienced these sudden malfunctions have been seriously injured, usually as a result of the sudden stopping of the car for no reason.
Nissan May Have Known About the Defects
The recent lawsuits allege that Nissan knew about these problems with its FEB braking system long before the system went on the market in new vehicles. Specifically, the lawsuits claim that Nissan testing data, and other evidence during the design and development stage clearly indicated that these were major issues with the FEB system.
In fact, Nissan seemed to acknowledge the problem of phantom braking in its owner’s manuals, which refer to instances in which the FEB system might inadvertently engage in “some road or traffic conditions.” Evidence of the problems continued to mount in the first year after the brake system came out in certain limited Nissan models. The NHTSA database shows that there were 87 consumer complaints about the Nissan FEB system in the first year of its release.
Despite having knowledge of the specific defects in its FEB braking system, Nissan has not taken any steps to correct the problem. It has not recalled vehicles with the FEB system, not has it offered to replace or correct the FEB system in existing vehicles.
Nissan Brake Lawsuits
Over the last 2 years, a growing number of product liability lawsuits have been filed against Nissan alleging that the defects in its FEB braking system have caused accidents resulting in serious injuries. When the FEB braking system engages unnecessarily, bring the vehicle to a sudden stop, it can result in a variety of injuries to drivers and passengers in the vehicle. Rapid stopping can cause whiplash, concussions, and at higher speeds it can also cause bone fractures and more serious injuries. The phantom stopping malfunction in the FEB braking system can also cause rear-end collisions with vehicles following behind.
A consumer class action lawsuit regarding the Nissan FEB braking system problems already exists. The plaintiffs in that class action are alleging economic injuries only.
Who is Eligible to Bring a Nissan Brake Lawsuit?
Anyone who was a driver or passenger in a Nissan vehicle which contained the FEB braking system, and was physically injured as a result of the FEB braking system engaging unnecessarily, or deactivating, may be eligible to bring a product liability lawsuit against Nissan and get compensation.
Contact Us About a Nissan Brake Failure Lawsuit
If you were injured as a result of failure of the Nissan FEB braking system, contact the national mass tort lawyers at Miller & Zois at 800-553-8082 or contact us online.