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  1. #1
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    Yes | No

    A hypothetical question.

    Not knowing the legal system over here in the US... Would one have to disclose the potential frame warping issue to a potential buyer if we were to sell the car?

    This is purely hypothetical as I have no desire to sell. BTW: Actually had the pleasure of following my car on the road for the first time; They really are something special - IMHO it's still the best modern roadster.
    2001 Silver/Red


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    Yes | No

    Do you "Know" there is an issue?

    Many things get posted on the internet, accurate and inaccurate. We have yet to see any scientific analysis of this issue. The only thing official that we have seen is a letter in German to a club in Germany, purportedly saying that BMW AG sees no safety issue in the continued operation of the car. I'm not trying to state that there is NO issue, but I am also saying that there may not be one, I don't know. Time will tell.

    If your car is undamaged, from whatever cause, what is there to reveal at this time? Should you mention that the window sticker misstated the presence of an LSD at the time of its initial sale to you?

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    Yes | No

    Above and beyond legal considerations there (m)

    are ethical considerations. The litmus test is the golden rule of "do unto others as you would have others do unto you."

    If you know that the potentiality for a problem exists, however remote, how can you ethically justify not disclosing it?

    I suspect that if you put 100 rational human beings in a room, at least 99 of them would say that they would like to know whether a potential problem exists. Do onto others...

    The mere fact that the question of whether to disclose or not was posed suggests that it should be.

  4. #4
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    Yes | No

    Re: Above and beyond legal considerations there (m

    I absolutely agree vis-à-vis the ethics.

    My question was re the legality - sometimes legality and ethics do not necessarily go hand in hand...

    2001 Silver/Red

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    Yes | No

    So I pose the question again

    Would you reveal the LSD "issue"?

    It depends, in my estimation, on your view of the matter.

    I do not disagree with the view that "when in doubt, disclose" as the moral high ground. OK so now at what level do you disclose? "There may be an issue." "There is an issue." "There is a serious issue." "The issue is so serious that many owners will not drive their cars." "Some owners allege there is a design flaw when the assumption is the damage is a normal result of encountering a road hazard and/or driver abuse."

    My concern is not to give into "Internet Madness" until I know the facts.

  6. #6
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    Yes | No

    Absolutely, you must reveal the LSD issue. (m)

    Perhaps the potential buyer read that Z8s came with LSD based on the information BMW provided and does not the truth. Again, "do onto others..." I imagine you would like to know the truth. I sure as heck would.

    If you are of the opinion that there is no structural problem and that all the buzz regarding this issue is just Internet hype, then that's exactly what you tell the potential buyer. However, not mentioning it would be unethical. Armed with that information, now the potential buyer can do his/her own research and come to his/her own conclusion.

    BTW, considering that Z3s, M3s and some other BMWs have known structural issues similar to the Z8's "seems to suggest" that the problem is real. Admittedly, at this point to evidence is sketchy at best. I'm of the opinion that the problem is real and quite serious if not dangerous based on the aforementioned other models, but I can certainly see if at this point you have a completely different view.

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    Yes | No

    Re: Above and beyond legal considerations there (m

    I'm both a law professor (and former trial lawyer) and a business ethics professor. Here's a case in which the law and ethics overlap reasonably well. That 99% of people who'd want disclosure probably reflects the attitude of most juries (and hence, their attitude to you should you be sued for damages for non-disclosure).

    The basic fraud rule says you have a duty to disclose matters that are material (that is, had the facts been known at the time of sale, would the price have been substantially effected?) and not amenable to discovery by a reasonable inspection (reasonable being defined as within the competence of the buyer in question). We can obvious argue about materiality and what constitutes a reasonable inspection (do buyers have an affirmative duty to search the internet for information?) - that's what lawyers are paid to do - but I'd guess you'd lose this one more often than you won it, and note that the costs of defending are significant even if you win.Mike Metzger
    2002 Z8 (silver/black)
    2006 650 sport coupe (silver gray/chateau)

  8. #8
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    Yes | No

    One issue I've been thinking about a lot

    is the following:

    Most of us believe that there is some kind of problem. Some call it a design flaw.

    What do you do if BMW lawyers get at you for making derogatory statements about BMW and their cars, pointing out that sales have been affected, and more damages?

    I can only talk about the damage on my car (which I have seen and measured, although there may be more than I know by now), and I have an idea how it happened.

    Apart from that all I can say is that others talk about similar damages, some by mere eye-sight, others by thorough examination.

    So probably as a law professor you can shed some light on this situation, which may result in certain risks if a design flaw can not be proved.

    Cheers,
    Dieter

  9. #9
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    Yes | No

    Re: Above and beyond legal considerations there (m

    I summit to you that in this country that which is legal is suffocating that which is ethical. In order words, there is/are an awful lot of people and corporations denying, hiding, etc. facts that they know are true because of the fear of legal retribution. For example, car companies denying flaws known to them because to admit the truth would open them up to a slew of lawsuits.

    I say this country because I don’t know whether this is true of Britain, Germany, etc. and while I suspect that some of the same is going on there, I also suspect that it’s not to the same degree.

    The quandary that I find myself in is whether it’s the lawyers’ fault because they are driving frivolous lawsuits, or are they simply agents of a system that’s out of control. I suppose that it’s a bit of both.

    The real issue is that a society where ethics are secondary because “practical” concerns overwrite it is in serious trouble. I see the realities of having to hide the truth if you have a fiduciary responsibility to your shareholders, people like you and me, and not doing so can mean being out of business and betraying that fiduciary responsibility. Unfortunately, the fact that we got to this point is the troubling part.

  10. #10
    oab
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    Yes | No

    I'd agree (I think) with Bob...Tell them what!...

    it is a used car...here are my experiences its your money (buyer) take it to a dealer and have it inspected if you want but here it is AS IS...pretty, ugly, twisted, straight, LSD, open diff...whatever

  11. #11
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    Yes | No

    Re: Above and beyond legal considerations there (m

    Many thanks Mike - and I really must apologize for the legal/ethics dig!2001 Silver/Red

  12. #12
    Z8Eldred a.k.a. The Mudman
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    Yes | No

    Agree. I continue to drive the snot out of my car.


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