FTC begins a lawsuit, claiming Volkswagen deceived customers with its ‘Clean Diesel’ campaign and caused ‘billions in injury’
Jimi Beckwith
30 March 2016

The US Federal Trade Commission will sue Volkswagen in the wake of the ongoing emissions scandal, alleging that the manufacturer misled customers with its ‘Clean Diesel’ advertising.

Citing "billions [of dollars] in injury" as a consequence of the ad campaign, the FTC said it was aiming to win compensation for customers who bought or leased a car affected by the emissions scandal. It also said it sought an injunction to ”prevent Volkswagen from engaging in this type of conduct again”.

The FTC put the number of vehicles implicated in the scandal at 550,000, with an average price of $28,000 (around £19,500), with the most expensive affected Audi models topping $100,000. The expected cost to Volkswagen has not been announced, but it’s likely to be linked to Volkswagen’s claim that the cars would have high residual values.

The adverts in question included TV spots aired during the Super Bowl, as well as other advertising methods, including social media and print campaigns. The main message of the adverts was the lessened environmental impact inflicted by the diesel engines, which, in fact, were fitted with defeat devices used to disguise the cars’ emissions under testing.

The FTC is a US government agency, set up to protect consumers, and prohibits "unfair or deceptive acts or practices in or affecting commerce".

A Volkswagen spokesman said: “Volkswagen has received the complaint and continues to co-operate with all relevant US regulators, including the Federal Trade Commission. Our most important priority is to find a solution to the diesel emissions matter and earn back the trust of our customers and dealers as we build a better company.”

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Comments
9

30 March 2016
Dodgy practices with the diesel technology helped Volkswagen climb to the pole position in European sales charts but there is not a single authority in Europe that has so far challenged this mighty corrupt car maker. They have even been allowed to carry out their own investigation into their own corruption. How does that work?

30 March 2016
fadyady wrote:
Dodgy practices with the diesel technology helped Volkswagen climb to the pole position in European sales charts but there is not a single authority in Europe that has so far challenged this mighty corrupt car maker. They have even been allowed to carry out their own investigation into their own corruption. How does that work?
Fadyady VW is not carrying out the investigation into why the "cheat" software was installed. VW in co-operation with various German state and federal authorities has appointed an American firm of lawyers to carry out the investigation so the American authorities can see the investigation is carried out in a way deliberately that does not allow any suspicion that the Germans would whitewash any report to protect their industry. I know that this will not terminate your anti VW campaign but it may prevent your repeated posts on the subject being believed by anybody. It will be interesting to see how a court views VW's advertising clean diesels being sued when according to Wikipedia petrol cars produce up to 28 times the amount of deadly poisonous CO as a diesel car . Also how have any US buyers of diesel been conned or suffered a financial loss through VW's advertising. I presume that in America diesel cars enjoy far lower depreciation than petrol cars just like in Europe, just try trading in any car with a 2.0 litre petrol engine or larger, the dealers just do not want them sitting on the forecourt for months.

30 March 2016
In the states it is possible to sue for just about anything at all AND get the judge to agree a ridiculous compensation. Like the Lady who bought a Winnebago and whilst motoring down the road she left the drivers seat to go make a cup of coffee. She crawled out of the resulting wreck and promptly sued the makers because in the hand book it didnt distinguish being automatic and actually driving the damn thing. She got 1.5 MILLION bucks and a new Wini !! This is really true I didnt dream it up

what's life without imagination

30 March 2016
The Winnebago story has been disproved so many times it's ridiculous. Never happened; she didn't get 1.5 million bucks and a new RV. You may not have dreamed it up, but someone back in the 1970s did and it has been repeated ever since.

30 March 2016
Let's try to a bit more accurate, shall we? In the States, it is very easy to sue someone. However, it is NOT that easy to actually get the case into court or to win. Also, to suggest that it's "easy" to get any judge to agree to ridiculous compensation is stretching the truth significantly, and suggests that the process is different from what it is. The reality is that there are SOME cases that are absolutely absurd and make it to court anyway, and ridiculous awards are made. This certainly does happen, and it happens more than it should. HOWEVER, because these examples are so absurd, they nearly always make the news and are widely reported. The result is that people, especially those who don't live in the US, think that these cases are the norm. They're not. Regardless, to suggest that VW acted in any way other than reprehensibly -- it committed fraud with clear intent to deceive governments and customers -- is beyond absurd. The problem here isn't the US being too litigious -- it's other governments NOT caring enough to do something about a truly staggering and historical case of corporate fraud and deception.

30 March 2016
I know a guy who was caught driving drunk on the Great West Road. A subsequent blood test found him 11 times over the limit. There was no question of his innocence but he got away without penalty because his lawyer proved that the police did not complete the procedure. Volkswagen is employing similar tactics in Europe. There is no denying they have cheated the system blind but they know the cheats to fool the authorities.

30 March 2016
Ady, Do us all a favour and confess the reason for your hatred of VW please. You comment on every single thread. Can you admit it and explain it? You're desperately boring.


db

30 March 2016
It seems amazing that some people can stand up for what is a multinational car manufacturer that has created brand a smoke screen of brand led buyers. No matter how good the brand makes you feel the company ethos is utterly disgusting if they think it was and still is to an extent we do not yet know, ok to cover up and lie, then I for one would body swerve their products. Its quite ironic because some of their products are now in their latest generation of shared floorplans and drive trains catching up with the rest, pity the styling is photocopy dull though. Europe should but wont take them on just like our government still haven't sorted out the bankers who have left us all a nice legacy of debt but kept their bonuses! Capitalism needs checks and balances this is unfortunately left to the courts and lawyers in America(banks have been fined more there than anywhere else and we as tax payers have indirectly stumped up!) ironic or what !!

30 March 2016
Europe won't do anything because simply put, Europe is really run by Germany, since VW has such close ties with the German government (also rememeber all the dodgy going ons VW had with bribes and stuff), they are not going to get investigated properly, whateevr they are doing now is for show only. VW is too important to the German economy. On a seperate note Germany hides behind the Euro to sell its cars in Europe and around the world. For the above reasons VW will get away with it in Europe...

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