Motor Home Was Not Fit for Particular Purpose
Description Appeals court upheld an award of damages to consumer who bought a new motor home and had specifically discussed the power and braking needs, which the vehicle did not live up to. This was breach of warranty of fitness for a particular purpose for which damages could be awarded.
Topic Sales
Key Words Fitness for Particular Purpose; Warranty; Damages
C A S E   S U M M A R Y
Facts Leavitt bought a new motor home. He told the dealer he would be driving in mountains and wanted to be sure to have sufficient engine and brake power, which he as assured he would. He contended that there was not enough power to go uphill and the brakes would overheat going downhill. Despite many warranty repairs, Leavitt concluded that the engine and brakes were not suitable and he sued for breach of implied warranty of fitness for a particular purpose under the UCC. The jury awarded Leavitt $33,730. The judge also awarded Leavitt attorney fees under the Magnuson-Moss Warranty Act. Defendant appealed.
Decision Affirmed. "Where the seller at the time of contracting has reason to know any particular purpose for which the goods are required and that the buyer is relying on the seller's skill or judgment to select or furnish suitable goods, there is ... an implied warranty that the goods shall be fit for such purpose." Leavitt established that he had detailed conversations with the dealer about his concerns about engine power and braking and was specifically assured that the vehicle would do the job needed. The court properly concluded that "the measure of damages was the difference between the value of the coach as warranted and the value of the coach at the time that plaintiff reasonably should have concluded that defendant would be unable to repair the coach." Further, Leavitt may recover attorney fees under the Magnuson-Moss Warranty Act because, under Michigan law, such fees may be considered consequential damages that are also covered.
Citation Leavitt v. Monaco Coach Corporation, - N.W.2d - (2000 WL 719556, Ct. App., Mich., 2000)

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