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Daimler is a German multinational automotive corporation headquartered in Stuttgart. It is the 13th largest car manufacturer and the largest truck manufacturer in the world.
In a statement on 26 September 2015, just days after the VW ‘Dieselgate’ scandal had come to light, Daimler’s CEO, Dieter Zetsche stated publicly that a “function that limits emissions treatment performance was not used in Mercedes-Benz vehicles.” However, since May 2018, Germany’s road vehicle authority (“KBA”) has issued several recall orders after claiming to have discovered defeat devices in Daimler vehicles.
Daimler has also been subject to a fine of EUR 870 million by the Stuttgart prosecutor’s office in September 2019 in relation to the certification of diesel vehicles that did not meet regulatory requirements in terms of NOx emissions output. Consumer cases against Daimler are currently ongoing in Germany.
In the US, on 13 August 2020, Daimler AG and its US subsidiary Mercedes-Benz USA LLC announced they had reached an agreement to settle civil and environmental claims relating to defeat devices in approximately 250,000 vehicles. On 14 September 2020, US authorities, including the Department of Justice (DOJ), confirmed this settlement. Daimler expects to pay approximately USD 1.5 billion in settlements with US regulatory authorities and a further USD 700 million to settle a pending class action before the US District Court for the District of New Jersey.
At the end of December 2021, a group of investors advised and assisted by Deminor Recovery Services registered their claims against Daimler with the model case proceeding (‘KapMuG’) before the Higher Regional Court of Stuttgart. Deminor advised claimants to register their claims rather than issuing proceedings given that several key procedural and substantial issues remain uncertain. The registration has the effect of tolling the statute of limitations, while preserving the possibility to issue proceedings once further evidence against Daimler emerges, and some of the key outstanding questions are resolved.