Ferrari is in deep trouble

 ·21 Mar 2024

Ferrari was accused in a US lawsuit of failing to fix a “dangerous safety defect” with the brakes in some of its luxury sports cars despite issuing multiple recalls.

The recalls were no more than “an interim corrective measure” for one of the identified brake problems, leaving thousands of Ferrari drivers in unsafe vehicles, according to the proposed class action filed Monday (18 March) in San Diego federal court.

California resident Iliya Nechev claims his 2010 Ferrari 458 Italia, which he bought in 2020, had “brake issues” from the day he got it and “would experience partial or total loss of braking capability.”

“On one occasion, plaintiff was driving downhill at approximately 50 miles per hour, and while preparing to take a 90-degree right-hand turn, plaintiff pressed down on his brakes,” but the car didn’t slow down, the brake pedal was hard, and despite downshifting, there was no brake pressure, according to the suit.

When Nechev reported this to the Ferrari dealer, he said he was told the issue was “normal.”

Ferrari said in a statement that its recall in October 2021 notified international authorities of a possible defect with leaking brake fluid that could impair braking capability.

The original recall affected some cars from model years 2010 to 2019 and was later expanded voluntarily to include more vehicles produced from 2003 to 2019, Ferrari said.

“The safety and well-being of our clients is our highest priority,” according to the statement.

“We operate according to stringent safety and security guidelines to ensure that our vehicles always respect homologation specifications.”

Ferrari 458 Italia

Robert Bosch, which the complaint says is the maker of the faulty parts, is also named as a defendant. Bosch declined to comment on the lawsuit.

The complaint includes descriptions of publicized Ferrari crashes in Portugal, the UK, and Vietnam that were blamed on brake failure.

Ferrari is accused of not notifying customers of the full extent of the brake defect, which Nechev says could only be fixed by replacing the master cylinder.

Instead, the company continued “to sell (or benefit from the sale) of thousands of cars containing this life-threatening defect,” according to the complaint.

The case is Nechev v. Ferrari North America Inc., 24-cv-00516, US District Court, Southern District of California (San Diego).

Although this case is residing in the US, there is clear evidence that Ferarri is also a favoured brand among the local top 1% of income earners.

Even in a country where economic challenges persist, it’s not uncommon to spot a Ferrari cruising the streets.

Some individuals in South Africa, who have amassed significant wealth, are able to fulfil their automotive dreams despite these economic challenges.

For these high-net-worth individuals, owning a Ferrari is a symbol of global elite status and a passion for luxury and speed that transcends borders.

According to Naamsa’s data, over 32 Ferarris have been purchased brand-new in South Africa since January 2023 – with the cheapest model being the Roma, starting at a whopping R6,300,000.

Reported with Bloomberg

Read: New Toyota crossover SUV coming in April

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