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Press Release

For Immediate Release:
March 30, 2016

Office of The Attorney General
Robert Lougy, Acting Attorney General

Division of Consumer Affairs
Steve C. Lee, Acting Director

Division of Law
Michelle L. Miller, Acting Director
  For Further Information and Media Inquiries:
Lisa Coryell (973) 504-6327

New Jersey Division of Consumer Affairs Files Action Against Bergen County Used Car Dealership for Alleged Consumer Fraud and Motor Vehicle Advertising Violations

View Complaint

NEWARK – The New Jersey Division of Consumer Affairs has filed an action against European Auto Expo, LLC, a used car dealership in Lodi, alleging that the dealership, among other things, failed to honor its advertised prices for vehicles, omitted important explanatory disclaimers from advertisements, and obscured pricing details with misleading fine print.

The state’s eight-count complaint, filed in State Superior Court in Bergen County, alleges that European Auto Expo violated the Consumer Fraud Act, the Motor Vehicle Advertising Regulations, the Automotive Sales Regulations, the Used Car Lemon Law (UCLL) and UCLL regulations.

The state seeks consumer restitution, reimbursement of attorneys’ fees and costs, and civil penalties for each violation of the statutes and/or regulations committed by European Auto Expo.

“This action reflects our continued commitment to enforcing the laws in place to protect consumers as they navigate the often-stressful process of purchasing a used motor vehicle,” Acting Attorney General Robert Lougy said. “Unscrupulous dealers who use bait and switch advertising tactics or otherwise defraud consumers will be held accountable.”

The complaint also alleges that European Auto Expo engaged in several other deceptive business practices in connection with the operation of its used motor vehicle dealership, including:

  • Selling a consumer a used motor vehicle without disclosing that the odometer had been rolled back more than 60,000 miles;
  • Failing to disclose accident damage or other mechanical problems to consumers before purchase of used motor vehicles;

  • Requiring consumers to finance used vehicles by retail installment contracts, or purchase aftermarket service contracts, in order to get the vehicle at its advertised price;
  • Selling used motor vehicles without providing the required statutory written warranties;
  • Offering used motor vehicles for sale at the dealership location that did not have prominently displayed the Federal Trade Commission Used Car Buyers Guide;
  • Charging fees for documentary services without itemizing the price for each actual documentary service performed; and
  • Requiring consumers to sign blank sales documents.

“Deceptive advertising and sales practices will not be tolerated,” said Steve Lee, Acting Director of the New Jersey Division of Consumer Affairs. “Consumers shopping for a used car or truck are entitled to honest advertising, and appropriate disclosures as to warranty, price, and prior vehicle use and damage. Any dealer that tries to deny consumers this essential information is violating the law.”

Investigator Kelly Fennell in the Division of Consumer Affairs Office of Consumer Protection conducted the investigation of European Auto.

Deputy Attorney General Russell M. Smith, Jr. in the Consumer Fraud Prosecution Section within the Division of Law is representing the state in this action.

Consumers who believe they have been cheated or scammed by a business, or suspect any other form of consumer abuse, can file an online complaint with the State Division of Consumer Affairs by visiting its website or by calling 1-800-242-5846 (toll free within New Jersey) or 973-504- 6200.

Follow the Division of Consumer Affairs on Facebook , and check our online calendar of upcoming Consumer Outreach events.


Last Modified: 3/30/2016 12:33 PM