Tesla is in the midst of a class-action lawsuit with an owner who claims his 2015 Model S P85D door handles broke. In the latest turn, the automaker is moving to have the case dismissed on the grounds that the plaintiff does not have the standing to sue.
John L. Urban, the owner of the Tesla in question, said his Model S door handles stopped coming out because the motorized mechanism that activates the feature had broken. It cost $298.20 to fix, but another handle broke shortly after, costing an additional $300.60 to repair.
The lawsuit says that when a door handle breaks, vehicle occupants must enter the vehicle through other doors, which the lawsuit says “creates a significant safety risk in emergency situations.”
Tesla said the broken door handle “does not render a vehicle unmerchantable,” according to Car Complaints.
Tesla is also moving to have the lawsuit completely thrown out, alleging that a resident in one state cannot represent claims across an entire customer base, and is only subject to the laws in their home state:
“It is well-settled that a resident of a single state cannot represent a putative nationwide class asserting consumer protection and warranty claims because each class member’s claims will be subject to the laws of their home state.”
Additionally, Tesla believes the lawsuit should be dismissed because the Model S warranty only covers manufacturing defects and not necessarily defects in design.
Tesla said the only claim he made under warranty was fixed, which was a door handle repair, the company said.
The original complaint can be seen below.