Over a dozen car dealers across the country have launched legal proceedings against Toyota Ireland, claiming the firm is discriminating against them and is in breach of competition laws.
The 15 car dealers, who have also lodged a complaint with the Competition and Markets Authority, claim that Toyota Ireland is discriminating against them in relation to the criteria for appointment as authorised repairers for Toyota vehicles.
They say the firm is imposing a disproportionate cost burden on them in relation to the training of technicians. They also claim the company has imposed restrictions on signage on the dealers' premises.
They had been authorised repairers for Toyota for many years but are now required to meet a range of demands to continue in that role. The dealers say the system is discriminatory.
A spokesman for the dealers declined to comment on the exact nature of the alleged discrimination, saying it was a matter for court.
A spokesman for Toyota Ireland said it "strongly refutes the claim made", adding that it is "satisfied that it has at all times complied with competition law and the terms of its agreement".
He said it "intends to vigorously defend its position against what it regards as an unmeritorious claim".