Newport Beach, California (September 29, 2015) – Last Friday, MLG Automotive Law filed a national class action lawsuit against Volkswagen for the diesel emissions cover-up. The case, entitled Gregg Klein v. Volkswagen Group of America, Inc. (Case No. 2:15-cv-07570), was filed in Federal Court in Los Angeles.
Early this month, Volkswagen admitted that it has been deceiving regulators and the public by falsifying emissions data for nearly 500,000 diesel cars sold in the US. The company admitted that its 2.0 TDI engines emit up to 40 times the amount of nitrogen oxides than are legally permitted. Nitrogen oxide gasses are the chief cause of smog and acid rain, and are responsible for a variety of health problems, including reduced lung function and asthma attacks.
Volkswagen has further admitted that it instructed its software engineers to develop a sophisticated device that would conceal the emissions levels from regulators. The so-called “defeat device” detected when the cars were being tested, and adjusted the air-fuel ratios and exhaust flows to enable the cars to appear to be within emissions regulations.
The impacted US cars are the 2009 to 2015 Volkswagen Jetta TDI, the 2009 to 2014 Volkswagen Jetta SportWagen TDI, the 2012 to 2015 Volkswagen Beetle TDI, the 2013 to 2015 Volkswagen Beetle convertible TDI, the 2010 to 2015 Volkswagen Golf TDI, the 2012 to 2015 Volkswagen Passat TDI, the 2015 Volkswagen Golf SportWagen TDI, and the 2010 to 2015 Audi A3 TDI.
It is unknown how long it will take for the company to establish a fix, or how dramatically vehicle performance will fall as a result. However, customers are likely to see a significant drop in fuel economy and drivability in their cars. Volkswagen has issued a “stop order” to all of its US dealers, halting the sale of all 2.0 liter TDI diesel models.
“This is one of the most serious breaches of public trust our nation has ever seen,” said Jonathan Michaels, founding member of MLG Automotive Law. “So many people bought these cars based on VW’s representations that they were fuel efficient, smart alternatives to hybrid technology. The public was sold on VW’s concept of the ‘clean diesel’ alternative.”
The fallout from the scandal will undoubtedly be in the billions of dollars. Volkswagen has now admitted that it installed this same defeat device software in 11 million vehicles worldwide, and that it has reserved $7.3 billion to cover the cost of repair. This is in additional to the civil penalties and the Department of Justice fines that will follow.
About MLG Automotive Law
Located in Newport Beach, California, MLG Automotive Law is a full service business law firm, focusing on the automotive industry. MLG Automotive Law has litigated cases against nearly every major manufacturer, and is counsel on the GM ignition switch class action. Follow MLG Automotive Law on Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter.