Another proposed class action has been filed against Audi, BMW, Mercedes-Benz, Porsche, and Volkswagen – the 'German Five' – alleging the auto manufacturers engaged in an illegal scheme to suppress competition and raise the prices of their vehicles.
Another proposed class action has been filed against Audi, BMW, Mercedes-Benz, Porsche, and Volkswagen – the “German Five” – alleging the auto manufacturers engaged in an illegal scheme to suppress competition and raise the prices of their vehicles. This case, filed in Illinois, is one of many lawsuits recently brought against the automakers that claim the companies, since at least the 1990s, have conspired together in a series of secret meetings to fix the cost, suppliers, and technological innovation of their cars, allowing them to charge “supracompetitive” prices for “supposedly premium German engineering, innovation, and performance.”
German publication Der Spiegel reported that the Daimler and Volkswagen defendants have, following the European Commission’s July 2017 announcement of an investigation into “allegations of an antitrust cartel,” produced evidence of the companies’ anticompetitive behavior “in hopes of leniency.” The case alleges that the automakers colluded on various aspects of car design, including the size of AdBlue tanks in cars with diesel engines and the top speed at which a vehicle's convertible top could be opened or closed.
The suit argues that consumers were the victims of the defendants’ supposed behavior and were unlawfully forced to pay a higher price for German vehicles than they would have in a competitive market.
The complaint names the following defendants:
Audi of America, Inc.
Audi of America LLC
Bayerische Motoren Werke AG
BMW of North America, LLC
Mercedes-Benz USA, LLC
Mercedes-Benz U.S. International, Inc.
Mercedes-Benz Vans, LLC
Dr. Ing. h.c. F. Porsche AG
Porsche Cars of North America, Inc.
Volkswagen Group of America, Inc.
Camp Lejeune residents may soon have the opportunity to claim compensation for harm suffered from contaminated water.