By Yadarisa Shabong
(Reuters) – Aston Martin is suing a Swiss car dealer for alleging withholding customer payments for its $ 3 million Valkyrie sports car, the luxury automaker said Tuesday.
The London-listed company has also terminated its trading agreement with the dealer Nebula Project AG and has declared that it will now accept customer deposits for special vehicles such as the Valkyrie directly instead of involving a third party.
Aston Martin is also terminating contracts with AF Cars AG, which operates the UK automaker’s St. Gallen dealership in Switzerland and is run by Nebula board members, as some cars were sold in violation of dealer agreements.
Nebula and one of its board members, Andreas Baenziger, did not immediately respond to email requests for comments. Florian Kamelger, another board member, said in an email that Nebula would release a statement later Tuesday.
“Both Aston Martin and its customers are affected by the behavior of Nebula Project AG and its board members,” Aston Martin said in a statement.
A source close to Aston Martin said the case would be filed with a Swiss court on Tuesday, although neither the source nor the company disclosed the amount of the damages sought.
Aston Martin’s statement said it could expect a loss of £ 15 million ($ 21 million) on its 2021 results due to the allegedly withheld payments, but added that it was on the right track, to meet financial expectations for the year.
The shares of the FTSE 250 company fell 1.9% to 1,897.5 pence by 0747 GMT.
The Valkyrie is a limited-edition supercar that uses Formula 1 technology and sells for about $ 3 million, though the company has not given an official price. The company announced that the first deliveries for the second half of the year are on schedule.
Aston Martin said it would work to ensure affected customers get their Valkyrie cars as planned, even though the company didn’t receive all of the money.
($ 1 = 0.7191 pounds)
(Reporting by Muvija M and Yadarisa Shabong in Bengaluru; editing by David Goodman)