Daimler’s Bill for Emissions Cheating in U.S.: $2.2 Billion
If a major car manufacturer is willing to cheat emissions tests and lie to regulators, what does that say about how the company treats the people who drive its cars?
Daimler, the company best known for the Mercedes-Benz brand of vehicles, is paying $1.5 billion to settle investigations by the U.S Environmental Protection Agency and others, Jalopnik reports. The German auto manufacturer is also ponying up another $700 million to settle a separate class-action lawsuit.
The settlements stem from the “dieselgate” scandal in which Daimler and Volkswagen allegedly sold cars and vans in the U.S that were specifically designed to cheat federal and state emissions standards.
“With the proposed settlements, the company takes an important step towards legal certainty with respect to various diesel proceedings in the United States,” Daimler said in a statement announcing the deals.
The payouts come at a tough time for Daimler and other car makers around the globe, as the Covid-19 pandemic has wreaked havoc on vehicle sales. But the total amount is only a fraction of the more than $20 billion that Volkswagen has been forced to fork over to resolve similar investigations and lawsuits in the U.S.
EPA investigators in 2015 caught Volkswagen deliberately misrepresenting emissions information about diesel vehicles. They also found that the company was tricking vehicle emissions systems to give false reads, below emissions limits.
The difference, as the New York Times points out, is that Volkswagen fought the allegations and misled regulators before coming clean. Volkswagen’s settlements also involved 600,000 cars, more than double the diesel passenger vehicles sold by Mercedes-Benz (250,000) in the U.S.
Legal Protections for Car Owners in California
The cheating scandal raises serious questions about Daimler and how the company does business. It also comes as Daimler and many others have been forced to recall a number of cars for serious defects that pose safety issues.
Fortunately, the California lemon law protects many car owners in the Golden State. It requires car manufacturers to make a variety of repairs on vehicles while they are under warranty and to buy back or replace cars that the company is unwilling or unable to fix.
If you are a California car owner whose vehicle has been recalled or is otherwise defective, you have the right to ensure that the carmaker is held responsible. A California lemon law attorney can help.
Talk with a California Lemon Law Attorney
The California lemon law lawyers at the Bickel Law Firm have represented hundreds of clients in defective vehicle cases throughout the state. We take the time to understand each individual client’s unique circumstances and we work aggressively to resolve these cases for the people that we represent.
Our offices are conveniently located in Los Angeles, San Diego and San Francisco. Call us at (888) 800-1983 or contact us online to speak with a California lemon law attorney.