German sportscar maker Porsche has said that allegations of extortion and cheating by its former Indian importer, Precision Motors, are ‘completely frivolous’ and the company will soon seek to have the arrest warrants and criminal proceedings against its eight top executives, including global CEO and chairman Matthias Mueller, quashed in Indian courts.
This follows the appointment of Volkswagen Group Sales India in April last year as the sole importer of Porsche cars in India and the termination of the previous eight-year-old contract with Precision Motors, reportedly without any notice.
The Volkswagen Group owns Porsche and seven other car brands, including Audi, Skoda, Lamborghini, Bentley and Bugatti.
“The allegations in the criminal proceeding in which the court in Jaipur/India has issued the bailable warrants are in the view of Porsche baseless and without any material substance. Porsche is taking steps to have the warrants and criminal proceedings quashed within the applicable periods. Porsche's lawyers are confident to be able to demonstrate that the complaint is completely frivolous,” a company statement said.
The arrest warrants were issued by a Jaipur High Court order dated November 5, 2012, based on which local police and the CBI approached the Interpol to arrest the accused who were based out of Germany and the UAE.
Precision Motors had filed a case pertaining to “cheating, extortion, dishonestly inducing delivery of property, criminal breach of trust and criminal conspiracy” against Porsche.
Promoted by Mumbai-based Ashish Chordia, Precision Motors is also the Indian importer for other luxury car brands, such as Ferrari and Ducati. Sector experts say that following the legal dispute, the fate of the contract with Ducati may be a worry, given that the Italian sportsbike maker was also bought out by another Volkswagen Group firm, Audi, last year.
“We tried to speak to Porsche about the contract and fix our issues, but there was no response from them. We were left with no option but to approach the courts,” said a Precision Motors spokesperson.
In its media statement, Porsche, said that the case is based on a “purely civil dispute” brought to court by the former importer of Porsche AG following the ordinary termination of its importer contract by Porsche in 2011.