Litigation Customer sues Tesla Germany for “dubious sales practices”
A consumer bought a Model X from Tesla Germany in October 2020. Three months later, the new “plaid” version of the vehicle recently came onto the market. Why the customer is now taking this as an opportunity to take legal action against the brand.
Company on the subject
A customer is in legal dispute with Tesla Germany over a Model X. (Image: Tesla)
At the end of October 2020, a consumer bought a Model X from Tesla Germany. What sounds pretty unspectacular is now developing into a legal battle. What is the customer accusing the manufacturer of? As the law firm “Stoll & Sauer”, which represents the man, reports, he accuses Tesla of “dubious sales practices”.
According to this, the buyer had “asked Tesla” before buying whether a successor model was planned for the then current Model X or whether it could even be pre-ordered. Tesla Germany denied this. However, three months after the purchase, the manufacturer offered the new “Model X Plaid” on its website. “ The plaintiff would never have ordered the outdated model if he had known that a new one would soon come onto the market,” said the firm’s statement. In the lawsuit, the consumer is now demanding that Tesla take back the Model X and instead deliver a Model X plaid.
Tesla Germany itself did not want to comment on the case when asked with reference to the ongoing proceedings.
The law firm Stoll & Sauer rates the brand’s approach as “highly dubious”. Tesla deliberately provided untruthful information in order to be able to sell the old model before the new one is on the market.
The lawyers are certain that the importer already knew about the imminent start of the plaid variant at the time of purchase. Since the consumer had explicitly asked about it and Tesla had nevertheless denied those plans, there was a pre-contractual breach of duty according to §§ 280, 241 (2) BGB.
Lawyers demand questioning from Musk
The first reports on such models had already been issued in September 2019. At that time, Tesla boss Elon Musk announced the Plaid editions for Model S and X for about a year later via Twitter.
Manufacturers are not themselves obliged to indicate model changes. In the present case, however, the plaintiff’s attorneys are convinced that Tesla responded to the customer’s request with a deliberate false statement of fact.
The importer wanted to “secure its own profit interests”. Because the brand was aware that it could no longer sell older models as soon as new ones were available.
In addition, the plaid model is more stable in value than the customer’s Model X, with which the consumer only drove around 1,000 kilometers.
The law firm therefore filed a lawsuit with the Offenburg Regional Court on February 15, 2021. Stoll & Sauer also calls for a survey from Musk “in order to precisely clarify the flow of information between the German subsidiary and the US parent company”.