Santa Ana, California – Consumer-rights firm Hagens Berman and business litigation firm, Quinn Emanuel, today filed a motion in their national lawsuit against Volkswagen asking the court to order Volkswagen to provide owners of the tainted CleanDiesel cars an immediate buyback offer at the Kelley Blue Book value of the their cars as of Sept. 2, 2015 – the day before Volkswagen admitted to regulators that it had purposefully installed and used illegal defeat device software in nearly 500,000 vehicles sold in the United States since 2008. The defeat device software masked the vehicles’ actual emissions, allowing so-called CleanDiesel vehicles to emit oxides of nitrogen (NOx) at levels 40 times higher than legal limits during normal use.
The preliminary injunction motion, filed in federal court in Santa Ana on Oct. 12, 2015, seeks the buyback remedy following the automaker’s admission in congressional testimony on Oct. 8, 2015, that it purposefully cheated emissions regulations and would not even begin a recall and repair process until 2016, with the process taking at least a year to complete. Volkswagen has admitted it intentionally employed the cheating software for at least the last six years, knowingly deceiving drivers and emissions regulators while charging thousands of dollars more for the CleanDiesel engines over the same cars with standard gasoline engines.
“Consumers paid thousands of dollars more for supposed CleanDiesel technology believing Volkswagen’s advertisements and warranties that the cars conformed to emissions regulations, and that they were reducing their impact on the environment,” said Steve Berman, managing partner of Hagens Berman. “It is simply not good enough for Volkswagen to say ‘sorry, we admit we cheated, but please continue to drive your illegally polluting cars for months or even years before we do something about this.’”
“The resale values of the tainted CleanDiesel vehicles have dropped on average a staggering 13 percent since the disclosure of the emissions fraud,” noted Berman. “That is a loss caused exclusively by Volkswagen that its customers should not have to bear. We are asking the court to make Volkswagen turn the clock back, and make consumers whole as if it had not perpetrated the greatest vehicle emissions fraud in history.”
From reference to Volkswagen’s MSRP on its website, vehicle owners who purchased Volkswagen’s diesel vehicles paid anywhere from $1,000 to $7,000 more for vehicles with the diesel engines, as opposed to the same models with standard gas engines.
“Consumers who paid thousands extra for the so-called CleanDiesel engine did so because they cared enough about the environment to walk the walk,” said Quinn Emanuel’s managing partner, John Quinn. “Now, perversely, Volkswagen is forcing these same drivers who have shown they genuinely care about the environment to be among the worst polluters on the road while VW takes months or years to come up with a fix. Fairness dictates VW should be stuck with these illegally polluting vehicles, not the loyal consumers VW duped.”
According to the EPA, Volkswagen installed its deceptive software, called a “defeat device,” in at least the following diesel models of its vehicles: Jetta (model years 2009 – 2015), Beetle (model years 2009 – 2015), Audi A3 (model years 2009 – 2015), Golf (model years 2009 – 2015) and Passat (model years 2014 – 2015).
After receiving thousands of inquiries from outraged owners of VW and Audi CleanDiesel cars, Hagens Berman and Quinn Emanuel are continuing to expand their lawsuits and are seeking information from affected owners in all 50 states. If you own one of the vehicles listed above, contact our legal team now.
Hagens Berman launched a VW owners’ resource hub to help guide owners of affected Volkswagen and Audi vehicles through the process, including a Volkswagen/Audi lawsuit FAQ about the case, what recoveries VW owners may expect, and the litigation process.
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About Hagens Berman
Hagens Berman Sobol Shapiro LLP is a consumer-rights class-action law firm with offices in 10 cities. The firm has been named to the National Law Journal’s Plaintiffs’ Hot List eight times. More about the law firm and its successes can be found at www.hbsslaw.com. Follow the firm for updates and news at @ClassActionLaw.
About Quinn Emanuel
Quinn Emanuel is a 700-lawyer business litigation firm. With 18 offices globally, it is the largest law firm in the world devoted solely to business litigation. Firm lawyers have tried over 2,300 cases, winning 88.2% of them. Four times the firm has been voted one of the four “most feared” firms by General Counsels at Fortune 500 companies — the lawyers they “least like to see” on the other side. Further information is available at www.quinnemanuel.com.