Civic Hybrid owner sues Honda over mileage claims

When gas prices reached $3 a gallon, John True decided to stop driving his Mercedes-Benz E320 and started to shop around for a more fuel-efficient car. Impressed by the Honda Civic Hybrid, which Honda claims gets 49mpg in the city and 51 mpg on the highway, True coughed up $28,470.

After driving the car for more than 6,000 miles True was disappointed to find out his Civic Hybrid only gave him an average 32mpg. Angered by the fuel-economy his car was getting, True filed a lawsuit in US District Court in Riverside, California, against Honda for mileage claims.

According to The Detroit News, this is the first legal challenge of the mileage claims of hybrid vehicles. The lawsuit claims that Honda misled consumers in its advertisements about the fuel-economy of the Civic Hybrid.

“This case does seek relief for tens of thousands of consumers like Mr. True, who purchased the HCH expecting to benefit from its ‘remarkable’ fuel efficiency, and paid thousands of dollars extra for an HCH that looks identical and performs basically the same as the non-hybrid Honda Civic,” said a June 4 court filing.

“I can tell you that the 49/51 figures are EPA numbers, not Honda numbers,” Honda spokesman Sage Marie said Thursday. “Some customers achieve the EPA mpg figures and some don’t, as fuel economy performance is a function of conditions, traffic, driving style, load, etc.”

Source: The Detroit News