Western Massachusetts car dealerships to pay $175,000 over allegations of deceptive advertising
BOSTON -- Four affiliated car dealerships in western Massachusetts have agreed to pay a combined $175,000 to resolve allegations that they regularly published misleading advertising, and failed to follow through on sales prices and promotions.
None of those dealerships is located in Berkshire County.
They include Country Nissan in Hadley, Country Hyundai in Northampton, Northampton Volkswagen and Patriot Buick GMC in Charlton, according to Attorney General Martha Coakley.
An assurance of discontinuance, filed Tuesday in Suffolk Superior Court, alleges that the four dealerships regularly ran deceptive advertising campaigns on television, radio, dealership websites, Facebook and Twitter.
"We allege that these car dealers were luring consumers to their showrooms with misleading advertisements and refused to make good on the advertised sales and promotions," Coakley said in a statement.
The settlement resolves allegations against the dealerships’ owners and operators Carla Cosenzi of Longmeadow and Thomas Cosenzi of West Springfield, along with their affiliated companies, Tommy-Car Management Corp., Tommy-Car Corp., Tommy Car Advertising Inc., T & C Auto Corp., Country Hyundai, Inc., and Patriot Buick GMC, Inc.
As part of the investigation, the Attorney General’s Office found that the defendants allegedly refused to sell vehicles in accordance with advertised terms or conditions.
The settlement requires defendants to pay the state $175,000 over six months and to permanently refrain from unfair or deceptive advertising practices in the future. The Cosenzis, who deny the allegations against them, cooperated fully with the Attorney General’s investigation.