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MAIN LINE HONDA CAR BUYERS DUE REFUNDS, COUPONS UNDER AGREEMENT

 HARRISBURG, Pa., Aug. 11 /PRNewswire/ -- About 700 consumers who bought vehicles from a Montgomery County car dealership are each eligible for a $25 refund and $270 in coupons under a court agreement negotiated by Attorney General Ernie Preate Jr.'s Bureau of Consumer Protection.
 The agreement settles allegations that Main Line Honda, 123 E. Lancaster Ave., Ardmore, improperly added a $310 "destination and handling charge" to the price of vehicles it sold from September 1991 through August 1992.
 Preate said that during that period the dealership was operated by Martin Inc., which was owned by the late Martin Lustgarten. Main Line Honda has been owned and operated by Scott Imports Inc. since Sept. 1, 1992, according to the agreement.
 The agreement, an "assurance of voluntary compliance," alleges that the destination and handling charge added to the sales contracts in question was not included in the dealership's advertised prices and in prices initially quoted by salespersons to customers.
 Preate noted that under the state's Automotive Industry Trade Practices Regulations, all charges which are "necessary or usual prior to delivery" of vehicles must be included in the advertised price.
 Under terms of the agreement, Main Line Honda will mail letters to the approximately 700 affected purchasers and offer them each a $25 refund and coupons worth at least $270 toward the purchase of various goods and services, such as oil changes and car rentals, at the dealership.
 Consumers who decline the offer reserve the right to bring their own legal action against Martin Inc., according to the assurance.
 Preate said the assurance, which was filed today in Commonwealth Court, was negotiated by Deputy Attorney General Nora A. Dowd of the Bureau of Consumer Protection's Philadelphia office.
 Named as respondents to the action are Martin Inc., Martin Lustgarten's estate and Scott Imports Inc.
 Dowd noted that the signing of an assurance of voluntary compliance is not an admission of wrongdoing.
 /delval/
 -0- 8/11/93
 /CONTACT: Jack J. Lewis, assistant press secretary of the Office of Attorney General, 717-787-5211, or at home, 717-657-9840/


CO: Pennsylvania Attorney General's Office; Main Line Honda; Martin
 Inc.; Scott Imports Inc. ST: Pennsylvania IN: AUT SU:


LJ -- PH019 -- 1720 08/11/93 13:20 EDT
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Aug 11, 1993
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