Volkswagen was the very first vehicle manufacturer to be named in the diesel claim scandal, after which the brand was found to have used defeat devices under test conditions to cheat emissions standards by achieving false results.
The vehicle software cheated air pollution tests by adjusting engines under test conditions to emit fewer pollutants, making the vehicle appear more environmentally friendly than it is – when, in fact, its pollutant levels were dangerous.
Since VW, many more manufacturers have been suspected of using the same cheating software to unlawfully pass emissions tests and mislead consumers. Investigations into many more brands are underway, and if proven, customers who purchased, financed or leased a diesel engine vehicle between 2007 and 2020 could be entitled to compensation – but how much, exactly, and who is eligible?
Who Is Eligible to Make a Diesel Claim?
- They bought or leased a new or second-hand diesel car or van from the implicated manufacturers between 2007 and 2020
- They would not have purchased their vehicle had they been aware of the potential flaw
- They paid more for the vehicle than they should have
- They paid a premium for a vehicle that they believed was more environmentally friendly than it truly was
- Their car or van had to be fixed to meet legal emission standards
- Any fixes from the manufacturers led to lower fuel efficiency or performance
While Volkswagen was the first to be implicated and forced to pay out significant amounts of compensation to the customers the brand misled through its use of defeat devices to cheat emissions testing, other manufacturers are also under suspicion. In the UK, these include:
- Land Rover
Several law firms are investigating the listed car brands, with more potentially being added as the joint litigation case unfolds.
How Much Could Diesel Claimants Receive?
Currently, there is no guarantee that the joint case against the listed manufacturers will be successful. But given the success of the case against VW and the Mercedes diesel claim in the US, it’s likely that there’ll be a favourable outcome for claimants.
As of yet, there’s no fixed compensation amount that claimants may receive; most diesel claims are still ongoing and in the investigation stage, meaning no set sum has been agreed on. That said, most law firms have provided an estimate of the value of compensation that might ensue – based on the diesel emissions claim against VW.
91,000 claimants will share in £193 million from Volkswagen, with an average payout of £2,100. Similarly, in the United States, Mercedes-Benz paid over $700 million in a settlement in their case against thousands of drivers. Looking at these previous cases, experts have estimated that the current ongoing claims against the listed brands could be worth anything from several hundred pounds to £10,000.
Furthermore, the joint litigation claim against the manufacturers is on a no-win, no-fee basis. That means it costs consumers nothing to join, and if the case is lost, they do not have to pay a penny. The only time claimants must pay something is if the case is successful; a small percentage of claimants’ compensation will be deducted to cover the representing law firm’s legal fees.