As Mercedes-Benz’s parent firm Daimler is now being investigated for alleged emission cheating overseas, it has stirred up some controversy in South Korea as well. Customers are asking questions if they should cancel their orders and some consumers are preparing for filing a civil action against the company.
According to industry sources on July 24, some dealers of Mercedes-Benz Korea were swamped with inquiries on the order cancellation. Diesel engines which are now under investigation include 2.1 litre (2,143 cc) 4-cylinder OM651 engine, which powers 220d and 250d, and 3.0 litre (2,987cc) V6 OM642 engine, which powers 350d. It means that nearly all cars selling in South Korea are affected such as the GLA and GLC SUVs and C-Class sedans except for the new E-Class
Customers are considering the cancellation of their orders due to concerns over tarnished reputation when Mercedes-Benz decides to halt sales according to investigation results of the Environment Ministry of Korea. It can develop into Volkswagen’s diesel gate. In fact, a considerable number of inquiries are posted on the website of Club Benz, the nation’s largest Mercedes-Benz car club with 150,000 members. A member posted a question, “I ordered the GLC 250d Coupe but I should cancel it. Shouldn’t I?” Another member also posted, “Is it possible to cancel a customized order?”
Some consumers will file a class action suit. Law firm Barun, which has led a class action against Volkswagen Korea earlier, is preparing to bring a civil action against Mercedes-Benz Korea. An official from Barun said, “If the company has manipulated its emission tests, consumers can receive compensations.” An official from the industry said, “The government and consumers that have learned from the Volkswagen scandal, are highly likely to take strong action.”