As Automakers Add Technology to Cars, Software Bugs Follow

About six months after Gary Gilpin leased a Subaru Outback from a California dealer, the screen went blank and wouldn’t come back on. Mr. Gilpin took the car to the dealer for what he figured would be a quick reset.

“It was a whole month before I got my car back,” said Mr. Gilpin, who runs a sailboat chartering and brokerage business.

Some people would have just fumed. Mr. Gilpin sued.

He is among thousands of car owners, encouraged by plaintiffs’ lawyers, who have joined class-action lawsuits that accuse carmakers of selling vehicles with faulty entertainment and related systems. Their