NHTSA, Mercedes Benz Settle Dispute

By Staff Writer December 19, 2019

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration announced it had signed a $20 million settlement agreement with Mercedes Benz USA (MBUSA) to resolve Audit Query (AQ) 18-004, which NHTSA opened in 2018 to investigate MBUSA’s recall reporting and recall execution practices.

The settlement resolves the agency’s investigation into the timeliness and adequacy of MBUSA’s compliance with notification and reporting requirements applicable to vehicle safety defects and to noncompliance with vehicle safety standards. In addition, the settlement addresses concerns about the operation and functionality of MBUSA’s vehicle information number (VIN) recall lookup, a tool that is important for providing information to consumers about recalls affecting their vehicles.

Under the settlement agreement, MBUSA is subject to a total civil penalty of $20 million. This includes an up-front payment of $13 million, with an additional $7 million deferred penalty that may become payable if specified conditions are not satisfied. The agreement’s term is one year, with the option for NHTSA to extend for an additional year under certain conditions. MBUSA also agrees to meet regularly with NHTSA to discuss recall execution and reporting issues, as well as the performance of MBUSA’s VIN lookup tool.

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Last modified on Friday, 27 December 2019 14:43