Daily Management Review

EU Court Orders Mercedes To Pay Compensation In Diesel Lawsuit


If a purchaser experienced damages as a result of Mercedes Benz's improper installation of devices that reduce exhaust recirculation in diesel vehicles, the carmaker will be required to make restitution, judged the Court of Justice of the European Union (ECJ).

An owner of a used Mercedes initially brought the case before a German judge in Ravensburg. When temperatures dropped below a certain range, the exhaust recirculation system in the car reduced recirculation, which increased nitrogen oxide emissions.

The German court asked the ECJ if, in accordance with EU law, the buyer of a car fitted with such a device is entitled to compensation from the manufacturer, and how such compensation should be determined.

The ECJ said Tuesday that car owners have such a right, and that EU member states are responsible for enforcing it.

Earlier, the German federal court rejected the plaintiff's claim for damages, stating that the carmaker can only be forced to pay if such damage was caused intentionally.

Last June, however, an ECJ advisor argued that both intentional and negligent damages are compensable in this case.

The German Federal Court has scheduled a follow-up hearing for May 8 to discuss the implications of the ECJ verdict for German liability law.

source: dw.de