In a statement Stellantis said, a French court has charged its unit, Peugeot, with consumer fraud and ordered the company to provide $36 million (30 million euros) in in guarantees for potential payouts.
The charge, part of a diesel emissions probe has significant consequences for the company.
Furthermore, the Judicial Court of Paris has also ordered two other units of Stellantis, FCA Italy and Citroen, to appear in court over the coming weeks as part of the same investigation, said the company.
The investigation into Peugeot focuses on older diesel vehicles sold in France between 2009 to 2015 and stems from a wider probe French authorities launched in 2017 over alleged diesel emissions cheating test by diesel vehicle manufacturers.
Peugeot was assessing its defense options in the case, said Stellantis.
“The companies firmly believe that their emission control systems met all applicable requirements at the relevant times and continue to do so and look forward to the opportunity to demonstrate that,” said Stellantis, which was formed earlier this year after a merger between Fiat Chrysler and the French PSA Group.
Earlier on Tuesday, a French court charged Renault with alleged deception and manipulation of test results for some of its older diesel vehicles.
Reports from the investigation dating back to 2019 show, French prosecutors found that on-the-road nitrogen oxide (NOx) emissions, for some of the cars produced by the two company were more than 10 times the regulatory limits for some models.
($1 = 0.8213 euro)