Case Study on Class Action Against Mercedes-Benz
9th January 2023
IN RE: MERCEDES-BENZ EMISSIONS LITIGATION
In July 2021, the U.S. District Court of New Jersey approved a settlement between Mercedes (Daimler AG and Mercedes-Benz USA together) and a class of its consumers in the USA over accusations of fraudulent conduct and breach of emission standards through the sale of their “Clean Diesel Blue TEC” vehicles.
The law firm representing the plaintiffs, Hagens Berman Sobol Shapiro LLP, claimed that Mercedes advertised the “Clean Diesel Blue TEC” variants as their “cleanest engines”. However, they alleged that tests conducted on the vehicles across a varying range of conditions revealed that Nitrous Oxide (NOx) emissions from the vehicles were significantly higher than the emissions standards. They claimed further that Mercedes installed defective emissions control systems in their vehicles, which in turn caused the stark differences in quantities of NOx emitted.
The parties were able to reach a settlement by way of which, the Mercedes Defendants have agreed to pay an amount of $700 million. The settlement would benefit both, the current and previous owners and lessees of the affected Mercedes vehicles. However, this was contingent on, among other things, the class members submitting proof of current or former ownership or lease of the affected vehicles, and proof of vehicle registration (including the date of registration).
Gerard Malouf and Partners have commenced class action proceedings before the Supreme Court of Victoria against Mercedes (Mercedes Benz Australia/Pacific Pty Ltd and Mercedes-Benz Group AG together) on similar grounds. GMP Law alleges that Mercedes-Benz violated both, the Australian Design Rules (the Australian emissions standards), as well as the Australian Consumer Law (by virtue of their fraudulent and deceptive conduct). Hagens Berman Sobol Shapiro LLP is advising GMP Law in the Australian proceedings.