A class-action lawsuit (87-ch-02033) was filed in the Circuit Court of Cook County, Chancery Division, against the manufacturer of Audi cars, alleging that the defendant knew prior to 1986 that the 5000S sedans with automatic transmission were dangerous and defective.
Audis are manufactured by a subsidiary of Volkswagenwerk AG of West Germany.The suit claims the Audis are defective due to a sudden acceleration of the autos without warning that has resulted in property damage, bodily harm and death in many instances. Furthermore, the suit maintains that Audi knew about this situation for at least several years prior to attempting any corrective action.
Filed by the Chicago firm of Holstein, Mack & Dupree on behalf of individuals Paul Perona and Herb Harris as well as Mr. Leasing, an Illinois corporation engaged in the business of leasing automobiles, the class action suit further alleges that the plaintiffs were "irreparably damaged when the said cars they purchased that were manufactured by the defendant were substantially diminished in value and were recalled for repairs by Audi."
The suit continues that the Audi 5000S sedans with automatic transmission were substantially diminished in value by the defective transmission, and the plaintiffs incurred costs in obtaining replacement vehicles while the defect in their Audi 5000S sedans was supposedly being corrected.
The suit maintains that Audi implicitly and explicitly warranted to the plaintiffs through advertisements, brochures and other informational items that the Audi 5000S sedans with automatic transmission are of the highest quality; meet rigid testing and specifications; meet high quality standards regarding safety and quality control; are "luxury" automobiles fit for safe operation by licensed motorists on highways and roadways; and will maintain high resale/trade-in value.
The suit alleges that these statements were made by the defendant for the purpose and with the intent of deceiving and defrauding the plaintiffs and to induce plaintiffs to purchase said automobiles.
The suit also contends that even though prior to 1986 the defendant was aware of the number of lawsuits alleging a defect in the Audi product, the defendant refused to take any corrective action and proceeded to sell the said car knowing this defect existed.
"We believe that the defendant has shown a total lack of ethical business practice in this instance. Consequently, Audi should be required to compensate for the losses incurred by purchasers of this luxury automobile," said attorney Robert A. Holstein of Holstein, Mack & Dupree.