The bulletin told technicians how to fix the problem if a customer complained, but customers who didn't take their vehicles in for repairs didn't know about what was going on.
The jury awarded $25 million to Mathenge and the families involved, but Nissan appealed by arguing the trial court shouldn't have admitted evidence gathered from other incidents, and there was not enough evidence to support anything other than the crash was caused by Mathenge.
In addition, Nissan said there was no substantial evidence a brake problem caused the crash, and there was no failure to recall the SUVs because everything is preempted by federal law.
The appeals court concluded the trial court did not abuse its discretion by allowing evidence of similar incidents and "there was substantial evidence to support the jury’s findings on causation and the statute of limitations." In addition, Nissan "did not establish that the claim for failure-to-recall is preempted by federal law."
The trial was held in the Superior Court of California for Los Angeles County - Cruz v. Nissan North America, Inc., et al.
The plaintiffs are represented by Cory Watson Attorneys, Kiesel Law LLP, Carter Wolden, Claudia C. Bohorquez and Vicki I. Sarmiento.
Nissan has faced, and settled, a separate class action over defective delta stroke sensors in 2004-2008 Nissan Titans, Nissan Armadas and Infiniti QX56s. That lawsuit alleged defective delta stroke sensors could cause a complete inability to stop the vehicle.
CarComplaints.com has owner-reported complaints about Infiniti QX56 SUVs.