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Class action lawsuit levied against Mercedes-Benz for alleged emissions-cheating devices

The firm behind the suit reportedly requests either a recall or a free replacement program, even though Daimler claims the suit is wholly frivolous.


Another day, another lawsuit related to alleged misdeeds with diesel engines. This time, the law firm Hagens Berman Sobol Shapiro has reportedly filed a class action lawsuit against Daimler, alleging that its US Mercedes-Benz diesels contain defeat devices aimed at bypassing emissions regulations.

Automotive News reports that the suit, which started with a claim from an Illinois owner, says Mercedes cars use a device to emit more than is legally allowed in certain conditions, like when the temperate drops below 50 degrees Fahrenheit. The suit reportedly requests either a court-ordered recall or free replacement vehicles. It covers a wide variety of Mercedes vehicles, including crossovers and sedans.

The law firm reportedly uses two publications to reinforce its claims -- an article in Germany's Der Spiegel and a study conducted by TNO, an independent organization.

Naturally, the automaker isn't about to take this lying down. Automotive News quotes Daimler spokesman Joerg Howe as saying, "All our vehicles comply with regulatory frameworks...All our vehicles are certified according to the laws." Mercedes did not immediately respond to our request for comment.

In fact, Daimler's already addressed this allegation in the past. Back in January, Daimler responded to the TNO study with a complete rejection of the claims. "We would again point out that it is common that deviations occur in real driving conditions compared with the certified norm values," Daimler stated. "That is no reference to manipulation; they result primarily from conditions different to the legally-prescribed laboratory conditions."