mitsubishi lemons in new jersey
ABSTRACT: New Jersey Consumer Affairs’ Lemon Law Unit analyzed the lemon complaints brought to it during the ten year period ending in 1999. It found that Mitsubishi Motors, and its partners like the Chrysler and Hyundai, were among the worst performers in terms of number of lemons reported per registered car.
New Jersey's Lemon Law Study
OVERVIEW: Division of Consumer Affairs, Office of Consumer Protection, New Jersey State, produced a report in year 2000 titled The Motor Vehicle Warranty Act A 10-Year Report. It covered the period from 1989 to 1999. During this period over 140,000 new car buyers had contacted the Consumer Affairs' Lemon Law Unit with questions and complaints against the car manufacturers. From this over 3,000 cases were sent to the Office of Administrative Law for resolution.
New Jersey’s Lemon Law appears to be one of the strongest in the USA. However, out of 541 car buyers, who decided not to settle or withdraw their claims, and presented their case in front of the Administrative Law Judge, only 135 (25%) got restitution while 496 (75%) claims were dismissed. Shows that the law can help only to a limit. The best policy is not to buy those car models that tend to have above average lemon cases, in our view.
NOTE: Click the right graphs to get larger versions (50 KB each.)
Nature of Lemon Complaints
[Click image on right to get more details.] Looking at the complaints, we find that brake problems, transmission problems, and water leaks held the top three spots, followed by steering, stalling, noises, electrical problems to make up for over half the complaints. Paint problems, vibrations, drifting (left and right), air conditioning, odor, starter, oil/gas leak and idling accounted for over one fourth of the problems.
It is just a typical breakdown of auto problems. You might want to check your Mitsubishi car problems here for their relative frequencies.
Mitsubishi Cars as Real Bad Lemons
[Click image on right to get more details.] Excluding miscellaneous, Mitsubishi, Hyundai and Chrysler performed the worst when it came to number of lemon car complaints per car registration. For example while Mitsubishi and Toyota/Lexus cars had about the same number of reported lemons, less than 2% of the registered cars were Mitsubishis against over 10% for Toyotas. This means on per registered car basis, Mitsubishi cars were 5 times more likely to be complained of being a lemon compared to Toyota/Lexus.
Results broadly classified put Japanese models (Honda/Acura, Toyota/Lexus, Subaru, Nissan/Infiniti) on top, followed by European models (Volvo, Mercedes, BMW), American Models (GM, Ford) and at the bottom – Mitsubishi, Hyundai and Chrysler. Is Mitsubishi the Yugo of Japan?
REFERENCE: The document is based on New Jersey Lemon Law Report.
CREDITS: The eclipse on left is credited on the index page.