Renault Considers Suing Whistleblower



Renault is considering taking court action against a former employee who has blown the whistle on alleged safety issues with one of its cars.

Graeme Holt was until recently a long-standing PR manager with the French company’sU.K. operation, but left his role just before the Geneva Motor Show. This week he appeared on a popular and highly respected British primetime TV consumer investigations show called Watchdog.


For the last year Watchdog has been reporting on claims that the Renault Clio II has an unsafe hood that can fly up into the windshield at speed because the catch fails. Renault has consistently denied there's been a problem, saying it was all down the customers not closing it properly. The complaints to Watchdog and Renault have now topped 1000, with many reports of accidents. Holt appeared on the show saying the car maker knows it has a problem and is gambling with drivers' lives by not issuing a recall.


Renault continues to maintain that the hood on the Clio II has no design or build defect. However, it’s now recalling more than 400,000 U.K. cars to have the system checked. Ironically, that’s all the Watchdog reporters were calling for when they first broadcast the story a year ago.


Renault refutes the claim that it is putting lives at risk or that there’s been a cover-up. Asked whether Holt could be sued for his comments a Renault spokeswoman said: “As this matter may be subject to court proceedings we would prefer to say nothing further at this stage.”

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