Aguirre v. Nissan North America – $36 Million
On August 29, 2012, Jose Aguirre was driving his 2000 Nissan Xterra to his place of employment. Upon entering the loading yard, he experienced a sudden, unexpected acceleration. Unable to control or stop his vehicle, Mr. Aguirre collided with a loading ramp, launching his vehicle into the air and ultimately into a parked trailer. He sustained catastrophic trauma to his spine, leaving him a tetraplegic. During the course of nearly 12 weeks in trial, testimony and evidence was presented demonstrating that there was a design defect in the 2000 Nissan Xtrerra resulting from a lack of proper clearance between the accelerator pedal and the parking brake bracket. This defect resulted in Mr. Aguirre’s accelerator pedal becoming locked on top of the parking brake bracket, resulting in the SUA event. The court ultimately returned a verdict of over $36 million to the plaintiff.