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Honda Wins Appeal of Small-claims Hybrid Suit

Associated Press Modified: May 10, 2012 at 12:00 am •  Published: May 9, 2012
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A California judge has overturned an unusual small claims judgment against American Honda Motor Co. in a case brought by motorist who argued that her hybrid Civic didn't get nearly the gas mileage that Honda claimed it would. (May 10)

[Notes:VO -----LOS ANGELES -- AP VIDEO --MAY 9]

HEATHER PETERS SAYS SHE'S WON A VICTORY OF SORTS -- EVEN THOUGH A JUDGE HAS OVERTURNED A NEARLY 10 THOUSAND DOLLAR JUDGEMENT SHE RECENLTY WON IN SMALL CLAIMS COURT AGAINST THE COMPANY THAT MADE HER HYBRID --- HONDA MOTORS.

[Notes:SOT --HEATHER PETERS / HONDA CIVIC HYBRID OWNER]

"i'm disappointed of course....but i'm still glad I did it."

[Notes:VO ---------]

PETERS WENT TO COURT BECAUSE SHE SAYS THAT HONDA FALSELY ADVERTISED THE VEHICLE WOULD GET FIFTY MILES PER GALLON WHEN SHE BOUGHT IT.

AFTER BATTERY PROBLEMS, SHE SAYS SHE WAS BARELY GETTING THIRTY MILES PER GALLON.

AFTER OPTING OUT OF A CLASS ACTION SUIT -- SHE TOOK THE MATTER TO SMALL CLAIMS COURT WITH THE CHANCE OF GETTING MORE MONEY AND BIGGER HEADLINES.

SHE URGED OTHER OWNERS TO DO THE SAME..

[Notes:SOT ---------------HEATHER PETERS]

"I would advise people to do their own research...go on the internet and do reviews by other owners who have actually driven the cars."

[Notes:VO ----------]

THE JUDGE SAID HE HAD NO PROBLEM THAT PETERS -- AN ATTORNEY -- WENT ABOUT IT THE WAY SHE DID.

BUT HE SAID THAT FUEL ECONOMY RATINGS ARE OVERSEEN BY THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT -- AND SO ARE THE ADVERTISING CLAIMS ABOUT THOSE RATINGS.

SO THE MORE THAN 98-HUNDRED DOLLAR JUDGEMENT THAT PETERS WAS RECENTLY AWARDED WON'T BE ALLOWED.

[Notes:SOT ---HEATHER PETERS /HYBRID OWNER]

"it never was about the money....for me....this was about bringing awareness that this was false advertising...and in that regard....i've succeeded."

[Notes:VO -------------]

IN A STATEMENT -- HONDA SAID IT'S PLEASED BY THE RULING.

(****END****)

ANCHOR VOICE:

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VIDEO PRODUCER: NED BARKER

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VIDEO SOURCE: AP VIDEO

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VIDEO APPROVAL: DONNA STARDDARD

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VIDEO RESTRICTIONS: NONE

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MARKET EMBARGO (S): NONE

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SCRIPT/WIRE SOURCE: w2554

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