A proposed class action alleges certain 2018 and 2019 model year Volkswagen vehicles are predisposed to suddenly and unexpectedly stall and stop during normal operation.
The 60-page complaint out of New York claims Volkswagen has known yet actively concealed that 2018 and 2019 model year GTI, Golf, Jetta, Passat and Tiguan vehicles equipped with 2.0-liter TSI engines can stall without warning. According to the suit, the apparent stalling defect poses a significant danger to drivers, passengers and pedestrians in that other vehicles can collide with an affected Volkswagen after it’s stopped moving.
Moreover, the plaintiffs argue the engine stalling defect diminishes the intrinsic and resale value of affected manual and automatic transmission Volkswagen models. The consumers claim neither they nor other Volkswagen drivers would have bought or leased their vehicles—or paid as much as they did for the cars—had they known of the engine stalling issue.
Despite possessing awareness of the problem for some time, Volkswagen has been “unable or unwilling” to fix the stalling issue once it manifests, the lawsuit claims. Per the case, many Volkswagen owners and lessees have communicated with defendants Volkswagen Group of America and Volkswagen AG with regard to the engine stalling defect, yet the automaker has “failed and/or refused” to fix the problem free of charge while often conveying that an affected vehicle is operating as intended and therefore cannot be fixed under warranty.
According to the complaint, the actuator solenoids—components essential to a car’s variable valve timing system, which enables an engine to produce better fuel economy—in affected Volkswagen models are unable to accurately correct and adjust the timing of an engine’s camshafts as required to properly execute a combustion cycle. As a result, the suit says, an affected engine’s combustion cycle cannot be completed, leading affected Volkswagens to suddenly and unexpectedly stall.
The lawsuit, which includes reams of complaints submitted by Volkswagen drivers online and to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, stresses that the plaintiffs’ experiences with their vehicles are “by no means isolated or outlying occurrences.” According to the suit, Volkswagen has “evaded its warranty obligations” by failing to inform drivers of the engine stalling defect and blaming the issue on driver error when an affected vehicle is taken in for repairs.
“In many instances, consumers have incurred and will continue to incur expenses for diagnosis of the defect (despite such defect having been contained in the Class Vehicles when manufactured by Defendants) and repair and replacement of the damaged engine components, without addressing the underlying defect,” the complaint says.
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