Audi is accused of CO2 emissions cheating on certain gasoline-powered models with automatic transmissions. The company is facing several class action lawsuits filed on behalf of consumers who purchased or leased one of the affected vehicles.
According to the lawsuits, Audi installed a software “defeat device” on its 2012-2016 A6, A7, A8, Q5, S4, S5, S6, S7, and S8 models and 2012-2017 Q7 models equipped with a gasoline engine and an AL 551 or DL 501 automatic transmission. This defeat device was designed to lower the vehicles’ fuel consumption and emissions levels during inspection, causing them to emit lower levels of carbon dioxide (CO2).
The defeat device in the affected Audi models is able to detect when a vehicle is undergoing emissions testing by monitoring movements in the steering wheel. When the device determines the car is in the lab, it switches the engine into “low rev” mode, which lowers the vehicle’s performance, thereby cutting its fuel consumption and emission levels. When the car is operated under normal driving conditions, the device switches back to normal operation, improving performance but also increasing fuel use and emissions.
Officials with the California Air Resources Board (CARB) have reported that the emissions defeat device has been used on “hundreds of thousands” of Audi gasoline powered vehicles. Although the Audi A6, A7, A8, Q5, Q7, S4, S5, S6, S7, S8 models are the only vehicles that have been found to be equipped with the CO2 defeat device at this time, attorneys representing Audi owners have stated that other models may also be implicated in Audi’s emissions cheating at further tests are conducted.
The German newspaper Bild am Sonntag has reported that Audi officials were well-aware of the company’s emissions cheating activity with the affected gasoline models. According to internal documents uncovered by the newspaper, Audi’s chief of powertrains, Axel Eiser, reportedly stated that Eiser stated that the defeat device needed “to be designed to be 100% active on the dyno, but only 0.01% in the hands of the customer.” Eiser was later made head of all powertrains at the Volkswagen Group after the company removed most of its leadership following the Dieselgate emissions scandal.
Following news of Audi’s emissions cheating on its automatic gasoline models, several class action lawsuits were filed against the company on behalf of consumers who purchased or leased one of these vehicles. The lawsuits allege that Audi deliberately misled consumers about the value of their vehicles by concealing information about its emissions cheating and the actual CO2 levels emitted by the affected models.
Under federal law, car manufacturers are required to inform consumers about the emission levels and fuel efficiency of new vehicles sold in the U.S. Because of Audi’s emissions cheating, the lawsuits allege that the company gave drivers false information about the performance, fuel efficiency, and pollution levels of vehicles that were equipped with the defeat device.
The class action lawsuits against Audi allege that the company misled consumers about the value of their vehicles by its false statements regarding emissions and fuel efficiency. Drivers who purchased or leased one of the affected models were overcharged for their vehicles, the lawsuits allege, and may suffer a decrease in the value of their cars as a result of Audi’s emissions cheating. Drivers have also been forced to pay excessive fuel costs as a result of the difference between the marketed and actual fuel efficiency of their vehicles, and may be forced to pay additional costs to bring these models in compliance with state or federal emissions laws.
If you purchased or leased one of the Audi models affected by the company’s emissions cheating, you may qualify to file a lawsuits over the lost value of your vehicle and other additional costs. For more information about whether you may qualify, contact the law firm at Heygood, Orr & Pearson to receive a free legal consultation about filing a case.
The lawyers at Heygood, Orr & Pearson have already represented hundreds of Audi and VW owners affected by Volkswagen’s emissions cheating during the Dieselgate scandal. Our partner, Michael Heygood, was one of just a handful of attorneys selected to join the Plaintiffs’ Steering Committee that it helping to oversee the Multidistrict Litigation against Volkswagen in California.
To speak with a lawyer about your vehicle and to learn more about filing a claim, contact Heygood, Orr & Pearson by calling toll-free at 1-877-446-9001. You can also reach us by filling out the free case evaluation form at the top of this page.