Swedish court decision a victory for the aftermarket

The independent aftermarket representative body has said the upholding of a conviction by the Supreme Court in Stockholm against Kia Motors is a major victory for the independent automotive sector.

The Swedish court dismissed Kia Motor's petition to appeal against its conviction in December 2012 for breach of competition in the Swedish market on its seven year new car warranty.

Under the EU Motor Vehicle Block Exemption Regulation 461/2010, manufacturers have a duty to honour the vehicle's warranty when it is serviced outside of the dealership, and non-OE parts being fitted onto a vehicle is an insufficient reason for the warranty to be declared invalid.

Kia Motor's seven year warranty terms had stated "it is a requirement that any prescribed service is performed by a brand authorised workshop".

Aftermarket body the SBF, which like the IAAF is also a FIGIEFA member, reported Kia to the Swedish Competition Authority, which agreed the terms were likely in breach of Block Exemption Regulations. Following this, the SBF sued the vehicle maker in the Swedish Market Court which then convicted Kia Motors for breach of competition.

The IAAF is calling on the independent sector to inform the federation when car manufacturers and their dealers are miscommunicating information to motorists regarding their rights under Block Exemption legislation.

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