(Washington, DC) – U.S. Senator Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.) issued the following statement today after the Federal Trade Commission approved a final consent order against BMW of North America for violating the Magnuson-Moss Warranty Act by telling their MINI division customers that BMW would void their warranty unless they used MINI parts and dealers to performance maintenance and repair work:
“Consumers have a right to shop around when their car needs servicing or repairs. Unfortunately, car manufacturers too commonly deceive, mislead and scare consumers into believing their warranties will be voided if they use a local shop. The unanimous approval of this final consent order should serve as a wake-up call to any car manufacturer who has misled consumers with false information to bolster their bottom line. The FTC’s action is a critical step in ending this shameful violation of consumer rights."
Last year, Senator Blumenthal sent a letter to FTC Chairwoman Edith Ramirez urging the Commission to take action to protect consumers against the explicit and de facto warrantor tying practices in the auto service and repair industry and ensure auto companies are adhering to regulations under the Magnuson-Moss Warranty Act.