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Judge denies Navistar’s bid to dismiss verdict on engines

Dec. 20, 2017
Judge denies Navistar’s bid to dismiss verdict on engines

A Tennessee judge has denied Navistar’s attempt to disapprove the jury’s $30.8 million verdict on behalf of a Tennessee-based trucking company in a case involving Navistar’s older generation of trucks and engines.

Back in August, a jury in Jackson, TN, found Navistar violated the Tennessee Consumer Practice Act, and provided Milan Supply Chain Solutions $10.8 million in actual damages and $20 million in punitive damages. The trucking company sued after purchasing 243 Navistar 2011 and 2012 International Prostars with Maxxforce engines.

Milan accused Navistar of failing to disclose that the Maxxforce 13 liter engine had defects. The engine used exhaust gas recirculation to meet federal emissions standards. However, Navistar later abandoned that technology after it failed to meet regulations.

On Dec. 1, Judge Roy Morgan of the 26th Judicial Court considered multiple motions by Navistar challenging the verdict awarded to Milan. Morgan stated the proof showed that Navistar knew before launching the trucks that they had issues with the Maxxforce engine but “took a course of action not to disclose and claimed it was just normal business practice.”

“We're disappointed in the jury's verdict and we will be filing an appeal," Navistar told Fleet Owner. "We have successfully defended similar claims regarding our MaxxForce 13 engines in several other jurisdictions, including dismissal of claims of fraud in courts in Texas, Wisconsin, Michigan, Indiana, Alabama, and Illinois. Navistar respectfully disagrees with judge’s characterizations of Navistar’s conduct and the plaintiff’s characterization of its employees. Navistar has and will continue to defend our products, our reputation in the market, and the integrity of our employees.”

In addition to damages, Judge Morgan added $1.337 million of attorneys’ fees to the award since the jury found Navistar’s conduct violated the Tennessee Consumer Protection Act.