In most civil lawsuits, one party will attempt to have the case dismissed, the judge declines, and it's a nonevent.
But for five auto dealers attempting to sue India's Mahindra & Mahindra Ltd. for failing to bring its diesel pickup into the United States as planned, a federal judge's ruling to let the suit move forward is a rare bit of good news.
U.S. District Judge Thomas Thrash in Atlanta has refused Mahindra's request to dismiss the dealers' suit, which alleges that the company intentionally misled retailers into believing it planned to create a new U.S. truck brand.
Until now, Mahindra's dealers and its would-be U.S. importer, Global Vehicles U.S.A. Inc. of Alpharetta, Ga., have had no luck seeking legal relief.
A U.S. District Court in Missouri dismissed a dealer case against Mahindra last year, saying that the group's franchise agreement had been with the importer and not the manufacturer, and so they could not sue Mahindra. An independent arbitration panel in London also dismissed U.S. claims against the company brought by Global and its CEO, John Perez.