NEWARK, N.J. (CN) – A company that makes SilverStar halogen headlights rooks drivers into buying the product by making “grossly exaggerated” comparisons to its competitors on packaging materials and in video advertisements, a class claims in federal court.
Lead plaintiff Imran Chaudhri says Osram Sylvania and its subsidiary make misleading claims about the advantages of SilverStar headlights. The package says that, compared with standard halogen headlights, SilverStar bulbs are up to 35 percent brighter and wider, and they let motorists see up to 30 percent further down the road.
“But, buried in very small print on the back of the packaging Sylvania has a disclaimer that they are comparing the SilverStar headlights at 100% brightness and halogen headlights at only 80% brightness,” the complaint states.
These misrepresentations also appear in video advertisements for SilverStar Ultra head lamps, which an announcer promises are 50 percent brighter and wider, letting drivers see 40 pecent farther. But as the announcer makes claims like “See farther, see wider, see better,” tiny print on the screen tells customers to visit Sylvania.com/auto “for comparison information.”
The class wants punitive damages and injunction, alleging consumer fraud, unjust enrichment, misrepresentation and breach of express warranty. It is represented by Barry Eichen with Eichen Crutchlow Zaslow & McElroy of Edison, N.J.
Delaware-based Sylvania is the North American arm of German manufacturer Osram, a Siemens company