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Honda Appeals Hybrid Owner’s Small Claims Win

Maker aiming to overcome small claims verdict - even after settling class action suit.

by on Apr.20, 2012

Heather Peters with her 2006 Honda Civic Hybrid prior to her original small claims trial.

Honda has filed an appeal of the small claim’s verdict that awarded nearly $10,000 to a California woman who had gone to court claiming her Civic Hybrid delivered significantly lower mileage than the maker had claimed.

One-time corporate attorney Heather Peters had taken the small claims route after opting out of a class action settlement that she felt enriched plaintiff attorneys, minimized the costs to Honda and left little for the actual owners of the first-generation Civic Hybrid.

“Two hundred dollars and a coupon? That was worth fighting,” she previously said.

Yes, we reviewed that!

A California judge awarded Peters $9,867 to cover the additional fuel used in her Civic Hybrid, along with the anticipated lower trade in value.  By comparison, the class action settlement more recently approved by another California court will see about 200,000 owners receive between $100 and $200 in cash each, along with a coupon of up to $1,500 towards the purchase of another Honda.


California Woman Aims to Sink Honda Class Action Settlement

Heather Peters fought and won in small claims court.

by on Mar.16, 2012

Heather Peters with her 2006 Honda Civic Hybrid prior to last month's small claims trial..

After taking on Honda and winning a judgment over the inflated mileage claims for her Honda Civic Hybrid, a Southern California woman now hopes to derail a class action suit that would provide other owners just a fraction of the compensation she was awarded in small claims court.

Honda has been under fire for advertising significantly better fuel economy than it allegedly knew motorists would get with the Civic Hybrid sold between 2003 and 2009.  A proposed settlement covering 200,000 owners is now waiting for a final decision by Superior Court Judge Timothy Peters.  Until recently, it appeared likely the agreement would be accepted, but Peters shook things up last month when she decided to go it alone using the small claims process.

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The former corporate attorney – one of 1,700 Honda hybrid who opted out of the class action process — was awarded $9,867.  By comparison, the proposed settlement would provide owners $100 to $200 and a coupon good for a discount if they returned to buy another Honda.