In early June of this year, customers of Dollar General joined together to file a class action lawsuit again Dollar General. Dollar General is accused of deceptive marketing practices when selling certain kinds of motor oil that cannot be used in cars built after 1930. In addition, they are also being sued for practices on motor oil that cannot be used in cars after 1988.
It is alleged that Dollar General is concealing their brand of oil with other types of motor oils which can be used in modern cars. The oil in question does not contain the necessary ingredients that modern cars require to function properly.
Dollar General contends that they did properly warn customers by noting on their back labels, “Caution: It is not suitable for use in most gasoline powered automotive engines built after 1930. Use in modern engines may cause unsatisfactory engine performance or equipment harm.” However, this quote alone is not satisfactory in the eyes of the customers. The attorney for one of the customers, Andrew Smith, makes the point that “if someone was going to sell motor oil for a 1930 or older engine, they would be marketing it to a very specific demographic of the consumer base and not hiding it with other motors in a Dollar General.”
Mr. Smith believes that the labeling is not enough as several individuals have put the oil in their cars only to see them get damaged as a result.
The argument in this particular case appears to be about the size of the warnings on the labels of the oil products. However, there is another question that has to be raised. Why was Dollar General selling essentially a specialized product to the public? As reported, the motor oils in question were only usable for cars before 1930 and before 1988. It is quite obvious that most people don’t own cars that old. In closing, the following question must be raised. Even with the warning labels, is Dollar General still responsible since they were marketing a very dangerous and hazardous product to modern vehicles?