Chicago-area auto dealer sues VW over diesel scandal – Chicago Tribune

Posted: Thursday, April 07, 2016

Chicago-area auto dealer Ed Napleton is suing Volkswagen in what he hopes will become a nationwide class-action suit joined by other dealers over the automaker’s handling of its diesel emissions scandal.

The highly unusual move — dealers don’t normally sue the brands upon which their business rely — reflects the huge slump in Volkswagen sales since it last year admitted it fitted software that allowed 600,000 of its U.S. market diesel-engined cars to cheat on exhaust emissions tests.

While Volkswagen dealers nationwide have been left with lots stuffed with diesel autos they can’t sell, and the tarnished Volkswagen brand saw worldwide sales fall for the first time in 13 years last year, Napleton says in a federal lawsuit filed late Wednesday that it has particular reason to be aggrieved.

On Sept. 15, fully two weeks after Volkswagen admitted to regulators that it had fitted “defeat devices” to cheat emissions testing, but three days before the scandal was made public, it sold the third-generation auto dealer an Urbana dealership for “top dollar,” the lawsuit states.

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