General Motors’ plans to compete with Volkswagen for sales of diesel-powered cars have been offset by a class-action lawsuit over emissions reporting.
While the Chevy Cruze Diesel has been targeted for years to challenge VW, GM is in a similar position now on NOx emissions reporting. A class-action lawsuit has been filed in California by the law firm of Hagens Berman Sobol Shapiro, claiming that GM has been using emissions-cheating software just like VW does. That results in more-than-allowed NOx to escape the tailpipe, according to the suit.
The Seattle law firm is asking GM to pay Cruze Diesel owners back the $2,000 premium they paid for their cars as well as punitive damages. GM disputes the claims made in the class-action lawsuit.
“These claims are baseless and we will vigorously defend ourselves. GM believes the Chevrolet Cruze turbo diesel complies with all US EPA and CARB emissions regulations,” GM said.
A $2,000 per diesel car settlement could be less than what VW is paying back to diesel car owners in the U.S. VW will reportedly pay between $1,000 and $7,000 to diesel vehicle owners, in addition to either fixing or buying back the affected cars. The VW settlement is still being negotiated for submission to a federal judge next week.
GM had been making claims in the past that the Chevy Cruze Diesel that the U.S. version of the car was cleaner that what it had been selling in Europe. Mike Siegrist, GM’s chief engineer behind the US version of the diesel engine, told AutoblogGreen in 2013 that the engine has better NOx control.
The Cruze Diesel had been gaining a lot of consumer interest in the U.S. market for its driving range and mpg.