Hundreds of C7 Corvette Owners Join Class Action Lawsuit Against GM Over Defective Wheels

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Hundreds of C7 Corvette Owners Join Class Action Lawsuit Against GM Over Defective Wheels

File Photo: CorvetteImages.com


Sometimes a dream can turn into a nightmare.

That’s what the owners of hundreds of C7 Corvette Z06 and Grand Sport models are saying after joining a consolidated class-action lawsuit against General Motors filed Sept. 10 in U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan.

The suit alleges wheels on the 2015-19 Z06 and Grand Sport models are “prone to deforming and cracking, without impact damage” because of materials that were “cast, rather than forged … of insufficient strength … and insufficient quantity, to withstand the torque and power input from the drivetrain.”

Furthermore, the suit claims the cars are unsafe to drive because the broken rims could puncture the tires, causing air leaks and tire blowouts. The plaintiffs are seeking millions of dollars in reimbursements for the 18 owners named in the lawsuit, as well as other owners.

Hundreds of C7 Corvette Owners Join Class Action Lawsuit Against GM Over Defective Wheels

Photo Credit: Sonny Lenaers


One such owner was Vanessa Bishop Diggs, who bought a 2019 Z06 last year. “That was my dream vehicle,” she told the Detroit Free Press in an article published Saturday. “I did all the things I was supposed to do in life. If you did this and this, things came to you and you reap what you sow. And then, bam!”

The “bam” started when her dream vehicle started to “shutter and shimmy” after 15,000 miles on the road because of bent wheel rims that were not covered under warranty and cost $3,000 to replace.

So much for her dream.

“I don’t want the car now, even with the new rims on it, because it was sick,” she says. “I don’t want to deal with it, and the way General Motors is treating me, I don’t want it now.”

Hundreds of C7 Corvette Owners Join Class Action Lawsuit Against GM Over Defective Wheels

File Photo: CorvetteImages.com


For its part, GM has long maintained that there is no wheel problem with the cars and that no safety recalls are planned. Chief Engineer Tadge Juechter, in fact, said in 2017 that GM designs its wheels to withstand extreme pothole loads and tests them on high-speed lab equipment capable of simulating the entire life cycle of the vehicle.

“People are often surprised that a wheel can be bent or cracked without any visible damage to the tire or obvious scratches on the wheel,” he wrote then on the Corvette Forum.

He said a road can hazard can bend a wheel frequently so that the damage is “initially almost undetectable to the driver.” Eventually “fatigue cracks” can form, and despite having a normal appearance, the wheel can begin to leak.

Hundreds of C7 Corvette Owners Join Class Action Lawsuit Against GM Over Defective Wheels

Photo Credit: Sonny Lenaers


While we certainly respect and appreciate Juechter’s decades of expertise, we wonder why all four wheels would be damaged at the same time by a single road hazard. It seems the problem would be just one or two wheels.

We’ve written about similar lawsuits like this for years, and by now, we’re wondering if they’ll ever be resolved in court. Of course, as they say, the wheels of justice turn slowly. Quite literally in this case, apparently.


Source:
Detroit Free Press

Related:
New Class Action Lawsuit Filed Against GM Over Defective and Cracking C7 Corvette Wheels
Another Lawsuit Filed Against GM Over Cracked Corvette Wheels
GM Facing Class Action Lawsuit Over C7 Corvette Z06’s Cooling Issues

 



29 COMMENTS

  1. Tadge Juechter works for GM. If he told the truth about the wheels he would be a “former” Chief Engineer.

  2. As always use Canadians have been screwed over my Generous Motors!
    Just waiting for my 2019 G S wheels to fail! I have been purchasing new GM cars since I was 18 years and believe one could write a book on all the things that had gone wrong with my cars under warranty! Hell at times I was a nervous wreck over getting things fixed!

  3. If Diggs no longer wants her Corvette I’d be happy to have it. I’ll even pay the shipping.

  4. Simple solution, just buy aftermarket wheels! They look better, are stronger, and they aren’t that costly anymore. All my Corvettes have aftermarket wheels on them. And they are far superior to the factory wheels in fit, finish, strength, and durability.

  5. i am on wheel #2. I am fortunate that I bought the “wheel and tire” package when I purchased my 2017 Z. Seems that there are 2 factors regarding the wheels:: #1 Cast and not forged! My last Z had stock Forged Wheels and I NEVER had a crack. Also and correct me if I am wrong:: THEY ARE MADE IN CHINA or some other “SHITTY” country. So oooo Live with them ,or buy aftermarket wheels and hpoe that GM fixes the problem ASAP !!

  6. I bought my 2015 z06 new. Tracked it and drag raced it more times than I can count – never had a wheel problem. Dark grey with machined edge wheels.

  7. I’ve installed die cast HRE, OZ and aftermarket reproduction chrome Z06 and ZR1 wheels on different Corvettes I’ve owned. None of these aftermarket wheels had as good a finish or casting as the factory wheels I took off of my cars. However I’ve never had a problem with any cast aftermarket wheel or factory Corvette wheel cracking.

  8. I replaced 2 on my 2016 ZO6, none so far on my 2019 ZO6, and that’s in Vegas with good roads!

  9. My 2017 GS with chrome wheels had cracks develop on inner wheel bead seal edge on both rear wheels. Only had about 5000 kilometers on them. Luckily had tires and wheel insurance so they got replaced otherwise there would have been a fight to get them replaced under warranty.
    After that put 55000km on the GS travelling to las Vegas and all over mid west and western states with no further issue. Particularly having driven parts of Route 66 travelling through Mojave desert area.
    Now our 2016 Z06 with the design pkg wheels have so far had no issue. Just turned 60000 km having done the same travelling as the GS through out the US.
    Overall, very few problems with the C7s.
    Hope the valve springs hold out!
    I’m glad I cancelled my 2021 Z06 order.
    Too many issues and I dont trust the General.

  10. I own a C7 ZO6 2017 & have already had one rear rim defect line crack, it couldn’t keep air pressure constant, was replaced free, as a defective rim, know one summer later & with very little miles put on this summer have had a 10 drop in psi in one rim, it is also same newly replaced rim have replaced value in the stem & am watching closely!

  11. They better hope “buyer beware” is not invoked. Any wheel combo with that little sidewall on the tire is asking for trouble on something driving on public roads. Many aftermarket rims have been thrown out because people learned this the hard way. If GM does pay, then say goodbye to those optional super low profile tire rim combos. Ps. good luck to them proving they were not under-inflated(less sidewall=more pressure- 30psi won’t cut it)

  12. I have a 91 GMC Syclone & 92 Typhoon. It is well known that the wheels for these vehicles deform when hitting a pothole. It doesn’t look lime GM learned anything about testing almost 30 years later.

  13. How is quality control on materials and also on manufacture maintained by GM in the United States on those wheels manufactured for Corvette, in China? Apparently, over the years, from wheel to wheel and from month to month, there are differences in these types of wheels. The old steel rim Camaro wheels that got hub covers and trim rings to mag them look better were much strong and failures with those wheels was a rarity. Carbon Fiber often has imperfections, making them weak. Any time they are flash painted, etc. there’s no way that patterns in the carbon fiber can be checked. This many wheels over a short number of years is very high on the suspects list for bad quality. How on earth are they going to pick a jury?

  14. I have a 2017 zo6 with 24,000 miles and i allready changed both off my rear crack rims $850 each.

  15. OMG I think I better stick with my 1978 Corvette it has all steel rims ,yeah it’s old ,but we’ll tested,no emissions test do what u want to it ,and it only cost under 3000.00, previous owner couldn’t fit in car,. No frame rot mtr.trans,rear,all great shape, needs to, but. Man I like the new vett,,as I know best to wait until that break for a while

  16. I worked at a big three car manufacturer. It’s a joke in the quality that’s allowed and not allowed. As I was quality supervisor for a closed plant in Delaware, I do know what I’m speaking on. Ripped seats that’s repaired with putty and paint bent rims from the supplier that was used anyway because we were told warranty will fix it later (nothing mentioned of customer safety).
    I will never buy american built cars again. This includes american made hondas, etc…. I was a GM guy. Owned three trucks, a camaro z28, Cadillac CTS, Buick Encore. Never again. I love the new camaros, but no way will I buy it GM is so dumb, they focus on the wrong things. Focus on customer satisfaction, and long term quality instead of short term and your customers will slowly return..

  17. Well, I have a 2019 Grand Sport ragtop I have about 7000 Kms on it and it has no cracks or problems with the rims. I have a Service manager buddy at the dealership and he has worked their for years and he said he has had no C7 rim problems. Because they are lower profile tires on this car, I am extra cautious about pot holes. As for the comments about GM quality, my Vette seems to be made great!!! I’ve been a GM guy for years, the only beef I ever had with GM was the Vega LOL.

  18. Dan decostole Oct 13, 2020 At 6:22 pm
    How do I join the class action lawsuit I own a “2026 Z06”. Well I guess you jump into a time machine and go 6 years into the future!

  19. I drove my Grand Sport off the showroom floor in Feb. 2017, and on the way home, something was wrong. We went thru tire pressure, etc. I kept whining. The dealer telling me to get like 1500 KM on it … but couldn’t stand it. Got the service rep in the car with me @ 500k, and he agreed, so had all the wheels checked. Faulty front rim, right out of the gate! If I hadn’t been persistent, probably ignored until I had the wheels checked myself. They replaced the wheel/Michelin, but 18 months later, they had to replace both front Michelins… bad tires. All courtesy of the General. Then I got the “shudders” this spring (25,000k), and figured out it wasn’t the wheels *big surprise* but the damned transmission fluid. Still don’t trust the mags but will continue to monitor it. Another CC member had a wheel on his Carbon 65 replaced, almost out of the gate as well.
    Not into the C8, and want to keep my Watkins Grey GS, “the Stealth”.

  20. Come on GM take care of the friggen problem for Christ sake. I may be glad I got a C6 GS instead of a C7. You’re giving Corvette and GM a very bad name here. This is bs especially on a high dollar car like the Vettes.

  21. I have a 2017 Grand Sport and had crack rim problems every year this is crazy new rim $800.00 plus getting it fix around $200 smh

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