ONE million drivers could get a payout worth as much as £2,500 each over allegations of car emissions test cheating.
Lawyers claim Vauxhall fitted devices to models like the Astra, Corsa and Zafira that helped pass the tests and that drivers were mis-sold their cars as a result.
Law firm Milberg London alleges 600,000 vehicles were fitted with what’s been called “defeat” devices which “cheated” emissions tests to meet legal environmental standards for cars.
It claims the drivers were mis-sold cars because they were more polluting than promised and worth less than the purchase price.
Drivers who bought or leased a new or used diesel Vauxhall between 2009 and 2019 could be due money back.
Lawyers are preparing legal action against the carmaker on behalf of those affected.
Vauxhall said in a statement: “Vauxhall Motors is not aware of any such claim and rejects any accusation of using illegal defeat devices. Our vehicles meet the applicable regulations.”
Fellow carmaker Volkswagen was discovered to have cheated emissions tests in 2015 in what became known as the dieselgate scandal.
The law firm, which is also representing Volkswagen drivers in the UK over dieselgate claims, is launching the Vauxhall Pay Up campaign to find those affected.
It is planning what’s known as a Group Litigation Order (GLO), which means the courts can treat similar claims as one rather than having hundreds or even thousands of separate individual claims.
The lawyers believe that over one million drivers in the UK are affected and that if the case is successful, they could be entitled to compensation of between 25% and 75% of what they paid for the car.
The average payout for each person would workout to be around £2,500.
There’s no guarantee this will happen – the legal process has many steps and is at the very begining.
Once Vauxhall owners come forward a court must first give the go-ahead for a Group Litigation Claim.
Edward Cardington, partner at Milberg London and lead lawyer for the Vauxhall Pay Up Campaign, said: “The Vauxhall Pay Up campaign has set out to prove that Vauxhall cheated both the emissions tests and hardworking British drivers.
“Motorists were promised a combination of low environmental impact and high driving performance that appears to have been impossible in real driving conditions.
“Put simply, clean diesel looks like a myth and Vauxhall’s cars did not provide the performance drivers paid for.”
“Anyone who bought a Vauxhall between 2009 and 2019 could be due compensation, and they can find out whether they might be eligible at www.vauxhallpayup.co.uk.
“My advice today is if you are in doubt, check it out. It costs nothing to take part in this group litigation; the risk is borne by the lawyers if we lose; if we win Vauxhall owners could receive thousands in compensation. In our view, there isn’t much to lose.”