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Is your car is a lemon if the warranty does not cover defects?

Buying a new car can be exciting. It may fill you with the promise of reliability and performance.

However, what happens when your new car starts having issues that the warranty does not cover? In Minnesota, this situation raises questions about whether your vehicle qualifies as a lemon.

Qualifying as a lemon

In Minnesota, the lemon law applies to new and leased vehicles, including cars, trucks and motorcycles.

Your vehicle must meet certain criteria. For example, the issues must arise within the warranty period. If your car experiences substantial defects that persist after a reasonable number of repair attempts, it may be a lemon. The law typically requires that the defects substantially impair the use, value or safety of the vehicle.

Warranty coverage

Warranties typically provide coverage for certain types of repairs and replacements. However, they may exclude coverage for specific components or issues. If your car experiences problems that fall outside the scope of the warranty, you may find yourself facing significant repair costs.

Examples of issues that the warranty might not cover include wear and tear on components such as brakes, tires, and upholstery. Electrical accessories such as radios, navigation systems and entertainment displays might also fall outside the warranty’s scope.

However, your warranty might cover your issue, and it is the manufacturer that refuses to honor it or that misrepresents the issues. Keep all repair receipts and paperwork about the car. Document communications with the dealer or manufacturer.

The manufacturer generally must provide a refund or replacement vehicle if it cannot arrange for adequate repair of the defects. However, the process can be complex.

Dealing with a defective vehicle can be frustrating and costly, especially if the issues persist despite multiple repair attempts. By understanding your rights you can potentially find relief from the burden of owning a lemon.