PITTSBURGH, Pa. (WKBN) — Pennsylvania Attorney General Michelle Henry is suing a Pittsburgh automobile dealership, accusing it of selling subpar vehicles.

The lawsuit was filed against North Hills Auto Mall and its president Regis Mannke.

Henry said the dealership deceived consumers about the conditions of vehicles – which often broke down shortly after sales, or did not pass inspection, she said.

The suit also alleges that the dealership deceived consumers into believing they were purchasing vehicles in good condition and under warranty. The lawsuit says that the dealership had classified the vehicles as being sold “as is,” and the “warranty” was actually a limited service contract from a third party.

Pennsylvania law prohibits the sale of vehicles where the dealer knew or should have known about serious issues involving the offered vehicle – even if the vehicle is sold “as is.” 

“This is every used car buyer’s worst fear – paying hard-earned money and realizing soon after that the vehicle is in poor condition,” Attorney General Henry said. “My office has a duty to uphold state law and regulations that prohibit deceptive car dealers from swindling consumers in this fashion, and we will do everything in our power to uphold that duty. Consumers deserve nothing less.”

The lawsuit calls on the court to order Mannke and North Hills Auto Mall to:

  • Pay restitution to all consumers who have suffered losses;
  • Be permanently prohibited from doing business as a seller of motor vehicles in Pennsylvania or to Pennsylvania consumers, and engage in any practices that violate the Consumer Protection Law, Auto Regulations, the Vehicle Code, and/or the Board of Vehicles Act;
  • Pay civil penalties of $1,000 for each violation of the Consumer Protection Law and $3,000 for each violation involving a consumer age 60 or older.

According to the lawsuit, North Hills Auto Mall also required deposits of at least $500 to secure the availability of a vehicle and did not refund the deposit if, for any reason, the sale did not go through, the lawsuit stated, and violated the state Auto Regulations by failing to provide consumers with required documentation, such as the purchase agreement and warranty information. 

Consumers who believe they or someone they know may have been a victim of North Hills Auto Mall should file a complaint with the Bureau of Consumer Protection online, by calling 800-441-2555 or emailing scams@attorneygeneral.gov.

Repair facilities, dealers, or anyone else who may have information regarding the alleged business practices of North Hills Auto Mall or Regis Mannke should also contact the Bureau.