In the wake of recent investigations by the European Commission into alleged price-fixing among prominent tire manufacturers, major players in the industry find themselves embroiled in a similar legal battle in the United States.
Pirelli, Continental, Michelin, Nokian, Bridgestone, and Goodyear have been sued in a U.S. federal court for their alleged involvement in anticompetitive practices, specifically price-fixing, reported Reuters.
The class-action lawsuit, filed by a California resident in Manhattan federal court, targets these tire giants and seeks class-action status for U.S. purchasers of tires dating back to January 2020. The suit alleges that the companies colluded to artificially raise and maintain high tire prices, affecting a wide range of vehicles, including cars, trucks, and buses.
The lawsuit is significant, considering the scope of the alleged misconduct, which spans several years and potentially involves a vast number of tires. The plaintiff claims that public communications played a role in facilitating this collusion among the tire manufacturers.
Responding to the allegations, Continental emphasized its commitment to compliance, stating, “We have a zero-tolerance policy when it comes to compliance and thoroughly follow up on and investigate all alleged allegations.” However, the other defendants, including Pirelli, Michelin, Nokian, Bridgestone, and Goodyear, either declined to comment or have not yet responded to requests for comment.
This legal action in the United States closely follows the European Commission’s announcement of an investigation into potential cartel behavior among tire manufacturers. The convergence of these investigations on both sides of the Atlantic underscores the gravity of the allegations and the heightened scrutiny faced by the tire industry.