Consumers for Auto
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News for Car Buyers and Vehicle Owners

Alexander Brangman with his daughter Jewel, who was only 26 years old when she was killed by an unrepaired recalled Takata airbag in a low-speed crash in a 2001 Honda Civic
The CARS Foundation is proud to work with Alexander Brangman, father of Jewel Brangman, who was killed by an unrepaired, recalled exploding Takata airbag in a 2001 Honda Civic. Alexander has become a leading spokesperson for promoting auto safety and alerting the public about the hazards of vehicles with unrepaired safety recall defects.

More about the tragic crash that claimed Jewel Brangman's life, and how it has affected her father Alexander and her friends:

NBC Channel 4: Airbag Recall Loophole Could Leave Drivers at Risk

People: Scott Eastwood's girlfriend Jewel Brangman died from faulty airbag in crash

More about Alexander Brangman and his pro-safety, pro-consumer advocacy

NEWS FLASH: CarMax Caught on Camera Selling Unsafe Cars - AGAIN
"Used cars with open safety recalls for sale"
WCBV -TV, Boston
By Kathy Curran
December 14, 2015
"Risk of engine failure, brake failure and even fire -- all potential problems with a Jeep Grand Cherokee put on display on Boston Common by two consumer protection groups.

5 Investigates went undercover, partnering with the Massachusetts Public Interest Research Group and research analyst Sean Kane of The Safety Institute. We hit the CarMax lot in search of used cars for sale with unaddressed safety recalls and also searched the dealer's inventory online.

CarMax Caught on Camera Selling Unsafe Cars - AGAIN
We found car after car with serious safety problems and 5 Investigates' cameras watched as Kane bought that 2012 Jeep Grand Cherokee Laredo at the CarMax dealership in North Attleboro.

The car looks great and according to CarMax it passed the dealer's comprehensive quality inspection. So you would think it's safe to drive. Well, think again.

5 Investigates discovered the Jeep has some serious safety issues, so serious that the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration's website shows it has three safety recalls that have not been fixed.

'The bottom line is I've got a $29,000 vehicle that has a potential for a brake failure, the potential for the engine to shut off intermittently and the potential to catch fire,' Kane said."

Watch video: "Used cars with open safety recalls for sale" WCBV -TV, Boston, 12/14/15

"CarMax sells used cars with unresolved recalls"
NBC Connecticut
August 24, 2015
By Max Reiss
Watch news report

"Blumenthal: CarMax playing car recall roulette"
August 24, 2015
By Mark Davis
Watch news report

"CarMax Plays 'Recalled Used Car Roulette' by Selling
Potentially Dangerous Vehicles"
The Consumerist
August 25, 2015
by Ashlee Kieler
"Sen. Richard Blumenthal, of Connecticut, who has sponsored several bills that would ensure used vehicle recalls are addressed before being sold, tells NBC Connecticut that the ConnPIRG report is 'chilling.'

'Bottom line: CarMax is playing a deadly game of "used car recall roulette" with consumer lives,' he said.

During the investigation at an East Haven, CT, dealership, ConnPIRG found that of the 42 vehicles subject to recall, four were part of two or more recall campaigns.

'One vehicle, a 2007 Toyota Yaris, had four unrepaired safety recalls, including air bags that may fail to inflate when needed, seat rails that can break and allow the seats to slide forward in a crash, and two defects that can cause it to catch on fire,' the report states.

At the Hartford CarMax location, investigators found 32 vehicles with unaddressed recalls, five of which were subject to two or more recall each.

'One vehicle, a 2007 Toyota Prius Hybrid 4D Hatchback, had three unrepaired recalls, including faulty steering components that can cause a loss of steering, corroded coil wire that can cause stalling while the vehicle is being driven, and an accelerator pedal that can get stuck in wide open position, causing a crash, serious injury, or death,' the report found.

Although the group’s findings are certainly eye-opening, and CarMax may be violating federal laws against unfair and deceptive advertising, or certain state laws, there is no specific federal law that gives the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration the authority to force dealers to fix recalled used cars before they are sold or rented."

Read more: CarMax Plays "Recalled Used Car Roulette" by Selling Potentially Dangerous Vehicles

"Consumer groups seek probe into CarMax sales
of unrepaired recalled cars"
The Los Angeles Times
June 10, 2015
By Jerry Hirsch
"Two consumer groups have asked California’s attorney general and the Department of Motor Vehicles to investigate the sales practices of used car giant CarMax.

CarMax sells unsafe recalled vehicles
The California Public Interest Research Group and the Consumers for Auto Reliability and Safety Foundation said the auto retailer regularly sells used vehicles that have been recalled but not repaired -- despite advertising that its autos undergo rigorous 'quality' inspections....

Researchers visited two of CarMax’s 18 stores in California, one in Oxnard and the other in Sacramento, and cross-checked vehicle identification numbers with a federal database that tracks whether a vehicle has been recalled and if it has been repaired.

They found that more than 10% of the 455 cars at the Oxnard CarMax had unrepaired recalls. Seven were subject to two or more recalls. In Sacramento, 9% of the 386 vehicles had unrepaired recalls.

CarMax sells unsafe recalled vehicles
The more than a dozen safety defects included: springs that can break and puncture the fuel tank, causing a fire; doors that can unlatch without warning and slide open in traffic; bolts that might break, causing an engine stall in traffic; and air bags that may fail to inflate in a crash...

The consumer groups, however, claim CarMax’s sales system might have potential violations of California regulations, including 'bait and switch' infractions, where a consumer is lured to the dealer with the promise of a car that is safe and reliable and then is switched to a defective, unsafe vehicle.

Other infractions might include false and misleading advertising and violations of vehicle code provisions that prohibit sales of vehicles that fail to comply with Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standards, they said in their report."

Read more: "LA Times: CA groups say CarMax sells unsafe cars"

"California groups say CarMax sells unsafe used vehicles"
The Sacramento Bee
June 10, 2015
by Mark Glover
"Two Sacramento advocacy groups released a report on Wednesday citing what they called CarMax’s dangerous practices and called on state officials to investigate the auto seller’s in-state operations. Specifically, the groups targeted CarMax’s 'sales of unrepaired, defective vehicles that are subject to federal safety recalls.'

CALPIRG and CARS called on Attorney General Kamala Harris and the Department of Motor Vehicles to investigate CarMax practices regarding 'advertising and sales of unrepaired recalled cars, and take all appropriate action.' 'CarMax is playing recalled car roulette with its customers’ lives and endangering the safety of others who share the roads,' said Rosemary Shahan, CARS president....

Citing information that CALPIRG obtained from the CarMax store on Stockton Boulevard, the report released Wednesday said 'approximately 9 percent of all cars recently offered for sale at that location had an unrepaired federal safety recall.' The report said 34 of 386 vehicles for sale at a local CarMax on May 26-27 were subject to safety recalls. The report listed defects including engines that could stall, possible air bag failure, worn parts, key systems failures and bad electrical connections.

At the CarMax store in Oxnard, 46 of 455 vehicles for sale on May 20-21 were subject to federal safety recalls, according to the report."

Read more: "Sacramento Bee: CA groups say CarMax sells unsafe used vehicles"

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Avoid buying cars with killer safety defects
Buyer beware: NEVER trust that a dealer will have the safety recall repairs performed before selling you a car that is being recalled. Dealers are so eager to make a buck, fast, they are unwilling to delay sales long enough to get the safety recall repairs done -- for FREE.

The CARS Foundation's tips on how to buy a safe, reliable used car — without having to risk going to a dealer:
Top 12 used car buying tips
12 used car buying tips that can save you thousands of dollars and help you avoid lemons and cars with killer safety defects

Did a dealer sell you an unsafe, recalled car? We want to hear your story. Contact The CARS Foundation

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