Audi and Volkswagen Timing Belt Class Action
On June 22, 2007, Pearson Warshaw, LLP filed a class action lawsuit against Volkswagen alleging that the service manual incorrectly states the inspection and replacement interval for timing belts on Audi and Volkswagen branded vehicles equipped with a 1.8 liter turbo-charged engine. The complaint alleges that the timing belts fail prior to the service interval, as stated in the owner’s manual. Plaintiff, on behalf of herself and the Class, is seeking reimbursement for the damages incurred relating to timing belt failures. Additionally, the complaint seeks an order requiring Volkswagen and Audi to update their owner’s manuals to require periodic inspections.
The parties have reached a class-wide settlement regarding the Volkswagen timing belt and Audi timing belt failures. Preliminary approval of the settlement was granted by the court on May 19, 2008. Claim forms, class notice and other documentation were mailed on August 1, 2008. The court will hold a hearing for final approval of the settlement on November 3, 2008. The vehicles included in the settlement are the 1999 Volkswagen Passat and the 2000 – 2003 Audi A4 and Audi TT vehicles equipped with the 1.8 liter turbo-charged engine.
The parties hired a Settlement Administrator to handle the notice and claims review process for Volkswagen timing belt failures and Audi timing belt failures. The contact information for the Settlement Administrator is:
P.O. Box 1937
Faribault, MN 55021-7192
Toll free: 1-877-465-4899
Complete details regarding the terms of the settlement were sent in the Volkswagen Notice and Audi Notice to owners of the class vehicles via U.S. Mail on August 1, 2008. However, to summarize, for qualifying class members, the settlement provides: (1) 100% reimbursement for reasonable Covered Engine Damage relating to timing belt failures, including repairing the vehicle, towing, alternate transportation, and lodging expense; (2) an extended warranty; and (3) a revised maintenance program. Please review the terms and conditions contained in the notices.
Copies of the Class Notices and Claim Forms are available here:
- Volkswagen Timing Belt Failure Notice
- Volkswagen Claim Form
- Audi Timing Belts Failure Notice
- Audi Claim Form
On November 3, 2008 counsel for Volkswagen and the class attended the final approval hearing. One of the 29 class member objectors also attended the fairness hearing. The court deemed the objection of the attending class member “well taken” and stated that it was not going to “presently approve the settlement without prejudice.”
As a result, the distribution of reimbursement monies to those class members who submitted claims cannot proceed at this time. Both Class Counsel and the attorneys for Volkswagen are working together to address the objector’s concerns .
A copy of the minute order, served on November 10, 2008, is can be downloaded by clicking here.
FEBRUARY 2009 UPDATE REGARDING FINAL APPROVAL OF THE SETTLEMENT
On December 15, 2008 the court granted final approval of the class settlement.
On February 27, 2009, the settlement administrator sent settlement checks to those class members who submitted timely and valid claims.