Chevrolet was said to be considering retail distribution of a CVT (“Continuously Variable Transmission”) for the Cruze, but that news appears to be premature. This may be a good idea.
We’ve noted here before in these posts that CVTs and as well as other replacements of the traditional hydraulic automatic transmission have been the source of many new lemon law claims the last few years.
These include the CVT in Nissan models such as the Altima, Sentra, Versa and Rogue. There was also the class action involving Ford’s DPS6 powershift transmission in Focus and Fiesta models. We have also had a number of clients report similar problems in Ford Fusion.
Despite these transmissions’ contribution to lemon law issues, automobile manufacturers relentlessly chase sales volume, and they need these transmissions to meet their CAFE (“Corporate Average Fuel Economy”) standards. They aren’t likely to go away anytime soon, whether the kinks are worked out or not.
Stericycle Expert Solutions and Lemon Law
If you’ve tried to negotiate a lemon buyback or with a car maker before filing a lawsuit, you may have encountered a company called Stericycle Expert Solutions ( a.k.a. “Stericycle”).
What is Stericycle?
Based on the “About Us” section of its website, Stericycle provides services to businesses in the form of “recall, retrieval, return, and audit processes”. The name “Stericycle” may originate from the company’s history of providing compliance solutions related to medical waste management, but this is only a guess.
Relative to the automotive sector, Stericycle bills itself as providing the following core services for leading car makers: “reacquisition, recall, early resolution, data cleansing and analytics, funds management and disbursement, and verification and inspections programs”.
Stericycle News & Lemon Law
Our firm has encountered Stericycle handling the lemon buyback and replacement process for car makers such as BMW, FCA (Dodge, Jeep, Chrysler, Ram), Honda, Kia, Suzuki, Lexus, Toyota, Mazda, Mercedes, Volvo, Porsche, and Mitsubishi.
It seems that these auto manufacturers and distributors will pass on the negotiation of lemon claims, along with the lemon buyback or replacement process, including the payment to consumers of money and the vehicle turn-in process.
In most cases, it appears that car makers intend for Stericycle to handle lemon law resolutions before the consumer has brought litigation — and typically before the consumer is represented by an attorney. This is important Stericycle news to remember for anyone who pursues a lemon law buyback or replacement from a car maker that uses Stericycle’s services.
Problems We Have Noticed
So, why are automakers passing their lemon law buyback responsibilities to a third party — and a party that is possibly named for medical waste management, no less? We can only speculate, but we have noticed issues that affect consumers.
Stericycle seems to insulate car makers from the buyback process. Stericycle can make arguments, demands, or requirements of consumers, while allowing the manufacturer to stand out of the way. We have seen Stericycle misinterpret the law — and, as you might guess, those misinterpretations have always been in favor of the company’s manufacturer clients.
Perhaps the worst part for most consumers is that the Stericycle middleman process contributes to the delay of resolving a lemon buyback or compensation agreement — a type of stonewalling that manufacturers use to induce consumers to accept less and be done with the frustration.
Advice for Dealing with Stericycle
Our firm has noticed is that Stericycle is not affable when dealing with consumer lawyers. They apparently like to dish out “compliance” in one direction, without taking any pushback.
If you are forced to deal with Stericycle in the course of a lemon buyback, and you have any doubts or discomfort about the process, the amount of payment offered, or the length of time it is taking to resolve your situation, contact Goldsmith West for a free review your case. It is always wise to have your own expert advocate, just like the automakers have in Stericycle.
Lemon Law Issues with 2013 and later Ford Fusion, Ford Fusion Hybrid, and Ford Fusion Energi models
We have seen a variety of problems with 2013 and later model year Ford Fusion model vehicles, including Hybrid and Energi models, which have lead to lemon law claims.
Most of these involve problems with the engine and powertrain, including the following:
- Problems Accelerating
- Wrench Warning Light
- Engine Fire
- Check Engine Light
- Clicking Noises
- Cooling system problems
- Oil and other fluid leaks
- Replacement of the water pump
- Piston Failure
- Rough Idle
- Transmission Failure
- Transmission Shifting roughly
- Transmission slipping
- Harsh downshift
- Slipping out of Gear
- Transmission Leaks
- Throttle Body Problems
We’ve also seen a variety of problems with Ford Fusion Hybrid and Ford Fusion Energi models including:
- Electrical system problems
- Premature battery death
- Fuel Economy Problems (MPG)
- High Voltage Battery Warranty Problems
- 12 Volt battery problems
If you have had any of these problems, contact us for a fast, free and confidential consultation as to whether you may have a claim for compensation under the lemon law.