— Volkswagen CC suspension problems are being heard in court as owners complain about tires that wear and cup because of suspension defects.
The plaintiffs say 2009-present VW CC cars have suspension systems that cannot be adjusted properly, causing the tires to prematurely wear and causing owners to constantly replace the tires.
The alleged CC suspension issues are caused by the camber, which is the amount of angle the tire slants away from the vertical axis, but the incorrect camber causes the tires to cup and makes driving a dangerous chore.
The plaintiffs say a suspension system designed correctly allows technicians to adjust the camber when the cars go out of alignment, a common problem that can occur from normal use.
However, the lawsuit alleges the front camber on the CC cars cannot be adjusted at all, and the rear camber cannot be adjusted sufficiently to keep the tires from wearing. This causes owners to replace the tires, only to watch as the new tires wear down.
VW has allegedly offered no solution to the suspension and tire problems and has allegedly told dealers to conceal the defects by telling CC drivers the premature tire wear is caused by erratic driving or bad tires.
The suspension lawsuit alleges one permanent solution is to remove the existing control arm assemblies and replace them with different control arm assemblies that allow for sufficient adjustments to the camber.
Adequate aftermarket control arm assemblies exist and have existed on the market and could have been used by VW dealers to repair the cars and VW allegedly knows it, but the automaker has never even issued any technical service bulletins to dealers because it would be an admission of the suspension defects.
The plaintiffs also claim Volkswagen has a warranty that doesn't cover tire wear or driver error, meaning the automaker gets out of paying for anything by blaming the tires and drivers instead of the suspension design.
Among the named plaintiffs is Matthew Martino, who leased a new 2013 Volkswagen CC Sport in June 2012.
In August 2013, Martino brought his CC to the Volkswagen dealership where he bought it for its 30,000 mile service and was told the inside of the front left tire on the CC was completely worn and the rear tire was worn and cupped.
The dealership recommended two new tires and an alignment because there was "rim damage" that caused the tires to wear. The plaintiff asked if his warranty covered the replacement tires and technicians said it did not.
In April 2014, the plaintiff bought his CC back to the dealership and was told all four tires were worn and cupped and needed to be replaced. Again the plaintiff was allegedly told damaged rims were the cause, even though Martino noted no damage to the rims.
In December 2014, Mr. Martino skipped the dealer and instead took his car to Firestone to replace the brakes. Firestone informed Martino that all four tires were again cupped and worn and needed to be replaced. However, when the plaintiff asked Firestone about the cause of the worn tires, he was told the CC suspension was causing the problems.
Then came June 2015 when Martino attempted to surrender the leased CC car but Volkswagen refused to accept it. The lawsuit says Volkswagen’s representatives said they couldn't take back the car because it needed new tires and wheels.
Still stuck with the car, the plaintiff took it to a VW dealer in November 2015 when technicians said two of his tires needed to be replaced. Mr. Martino specifically asked the dealership if there was a problem with the design of the vehicle’s suspension and was told there were no problems with the suspension.
The dealership allegedly suggested that Martino replace the struts and mounts on his front left and rear tires, so he took the car to Firestone which replaced the struts and mounts on his rear tires. Nonetheless, in February 2016 and then again in January 2017, the plaintiff had to replace a total of six more worn and cupped tires.
In January 2017, Martino brought his CC to a Volkswagen dealership and specifically asked if the problems he was experiencing with his tires could be caused by the setting on the car’s camber or a defective suspension design, and he was told the problems were not caused by a suspension defect.
According to the lawsuit, Martino has replaced all four of the tires on at least four separate occasions because of the suspension problems, allegedly at a cost of $800-$1,000 per tire, with alignment and balancing.
Volkswagen had filed a motion to dismiss the original lawsuit, but the plaintiffs amended the complaint. The newest version of the suspension lawsuit includes more claims against the automaker and adds more named plaintiffs.
The Volkswagen CC suspension lawsuit was filed in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Florida, Miami - Wilson, et. al., v. Volkswagen Group of America, Inc., and Volkswagen AG.