Often, when people think of car accidents, they think of wrecks involving multiple vehicles at high speeds. However, while these accidents do happen, there is another type of instigator behind car accidents that can cause serious injuries to the vehicle's occupants. If a car manufacturer designed a vehicle that is dangerous to its passengers, it can cause injuries and be tried under products' liability.
Products' liability isn't in the same category as most car accident personal injury claims. However, this type of law is still based on negligence. While cars are required by law to go through a variety of safety tests and screenings, sometimes flawed designs still get through the consumer. Oftentimes, they are followed by a recall on behalf of the manufacturer.
Oftentimes, a cost-benefits analysis is used in cases in which a manufacturer is accused of a products' liability suit. The cost-benefits analysis measures what the outcome would have been cost wise to implement a different design. While this isn't the only way to contend for a design defect, it can help to prove that an alternative design would have been just as cost-effective and safer for the consumer.
In the past, there have been design defects in vehicles in several different ways. One high-profile case covered how one manufacturer was negligent in placement of the gas tank, as it was prone to ignite and catch fire if involved in a rear-end accident. Other times, there are issues with the ignition that can cause a fire hazard. There are infinite number of ways that a vehicle could have been designed wrong. Victims of such negligence have rights.
Source: injury.findlaw.com, "Defects in Design," Accessed April 24, 2017