Woman sues Honda over bogus MPG claims

Posted by Mark Raby

A woman has filed a civil lawsuit against Honda because she says her car is not living up to its 50 MPG status.

She isn't alone in her frustration. There's a class-action lawsuit against Honda going through the legal process right now over the exact same issue.

But Heather Peters is not obligated to be a rank-and-file part of the mass suit. She is allowed to file her own claim and not join the class action, which is exactly what she's done.

There is a definite problem with the Honda Civic. Peters says she has barely been able to get 30 MPG even in the best of circumstances.

Her suit will go to small claims court, whereas the class-action measure will go through the traditional, gigantic legal channels.

As a result, Peters is probably more likely to win her case. After all, small claims courts have relaxed standards and are a much swifter process.

"If I prevail and get $10,000, they have 200,000 of these cars out there," opined Peters in a Reuters quote. She said she has been contacted by numerous other Civic owners asking how they can file their own suit.

Her action could put the traditional thinking of class-action lawsuits on its head. This case in particular is much more personal to each individual affected. Consumers care about gas money and they care about their cars. This isn't some obscure case where most people wouldn't even care about the issue at hand.

Peters could very well have just started a very big chain reaction. We'll see what happens.