Used Car Dealers. The tricks part-ex punters pull and have you ever bought/sold a Duffer.

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by ringway, Sep 13, 2019.

  1. ringway

    ringway MB Club Veteran

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    I visit the Car Dealer Magazine forum, which is a useful source of info from what some may call the other side.

    Apart from the upper end smart showroom brigade, will used car dealers ever shake off the Arthur Daly image?

    I could actually sympathise with a dealer (especially small) if they sold a car and a fault unknown to them at the time of sale reared its ugly head, but I suppose it's all part of the game. They will also sell a car with known problems, but this may well be reflected by a low screen price... or not.

    The 3 month warranty is mandatory when buying off a trader and although some will give the likes of a Warranty Wise package costing the seller circa £380 with a used car, some traders are prepared take a chance and self insure, and that's when the sh!t can hit the fan.

    Dealers don't have it all their own way and it can be a tough game sometimes, especially with the high rates charged at the auction houses.
    I have a BCA account, and their charges make buying some cars difficult, especially if not a gold or platinum card holder.


    I posted this as a way of pointing to the entertaining thread linked here. :D LINK.

    At the end of the day, I think it's fair to say that the car dealers live in a dog eat dog world and some are hungrier than others.


    Also, while we are at it, have you ever bought (or sold!) a real lemon?
     
    Last edited: Sep 13, 2019
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  2. knighterrant

    knighterrant Hardcore MB Enthusiast

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    I worked for a used car dealer for ten years. Admittedly it was at the top end of the independent market, but at no time was I aware of a car being put on sale with a known fault. Of course they popped up from time to time, but were always dealt with immediately and mostly by the relevant main dealer at our cost. Intelligent buying seemed to be the answer because none of the cars received a specific multi-point check before being sold. As the owner said to me (a few times!) “If it was easy, everyone would be doing it”.

    On a personal level, I’ve bought a few lemons in my time and kicked myself for not spotting them beforehand. But they were all cheapies so not a massive loss.
     
  3. markjay

    markjay MB Club Veteran

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    Interesting thread.

    All the cars I bought second hand so far were good 'uns (touch wood).

    As for px-ing, well I didn't hand over cars with known faults, but I sold cars that were fine at the time of sale, but due to deteriorating overall reliability towards the end of my ownership, I knew they wouldn't stay in that condition for very long.....

    Said that, in all cases the dealers were totally disinterested in the mechanical condition of the px-ed car, they mainly checked the paintwork for stone chips and the wheels for kerbing, while the engine only got a cursory glance. And they wanted to see the service book. So I could have easily px-ed a lemon (if I had a lemon to Px).
     
  4. KennyN

    KennyN Hardcore MB Enthusiast

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    Part exchanged an Orion 1.6 Ghia for a Sierra 2.0 GLS i , the diff bearings were shot in the Orion causing the fiber speedo drive gear to strip in no time causing the speedo needle to bounce all over the place then stop working a short time later.

    I stopped in at a petrol station next to the Ford garage and replaced the gear drive gear (2 min job) prior to letting the sales guy test the car which was fine for about 10 - 15 miles which was more than enough time to see all was well and get the maximum trade in price against the Sierra.

    The next owner or the garage would have had a rather large repair bill to sort out the dodgy diff.:(

    K
     
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  5. OP
    OP
    ringway

    ringway MB Club Veteran

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    :D I think that one belongs in here, Kenny? LINK.
     
  6. SL500AMG

    SL500AMG Hardcore MB Enthusiast

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    I have a confession, I bought my youngest daughters Kia Picanto on good faith from a private seller a couple of years ago, seemed good about £700 below the average asking price it was about 10k above average mileage. I thought that's ok as daughter was going to learn to drive in it and mileage would be low balancing everything out.

    The previous owner said he was an Uber driver and needed something newer and was looking for an auto (sounded plausible).

    I have little car inspection knowledge but on a walk around all looked genuine with a couple of small dents. Took it for a short urban test drive all seemed sweet and by which time daughter was pleading with me to buy it as she had fallen in love etc.. The car was under £2k so did not feel I was risking much.

    The car only had 1 key but it was reliable started first turn and was economical.

    We did the deal, transferred the money and she took some lessons in it and we used it to occasionally ferry her to work.

    After about 18 months we noticed on a couple of occasions it failed to start but would normally after 2nd or 3rd attempt. Seemed it occasionally failed to recognise the key.

    We then noticed a patch of oil appearing under it and one day when my wife drove it she said she could not engage 3rd gear.

    Took it to my mechanic friend who inspected it and announced the gearbox had gone and needed replacing. Bought one from salvage and he fitted it. All ok after that for about 12 months.

    My daughter decided she couldn't master the clutch and abandoned lessons due to financials and stated she wanted to learn in an auto.

    We took the car over and it became my wife's run around. Wife is partially disabled and has an elbow replacement, she complained that changing gears hurt her elbow. She also said that the steering wheel started feeling loose and asked me to take a look. The wheels were on fine but tread very low on front so put it down to that.

    Then the poor starting issue returned about 2 weeks ago and I noticed the paint on the front wing had gone completely flat.

    I decided weighing it all up that either I needed to spend on the car (and still have a manual) or take it as devine intervention as time to swap it for an auto for the wife. We decided on the latter so I dug all the paperwork out with a view to selling or part exchanging it.

    It was only at this time that I bothered to check the V5 to remind myself how to complete the doc when its sold.

    To my horror I saw a small reference at the bottom saying salvage recovered. Thought this looked suspect and with some googling I found out the car was a Cat C write off!

    The penny dropped and suddenly the 1 key, oil seepage, gearbox issue and dull wing all made sense!

    We decided to px the car using the new car scrappage scheme but could not find anything suitable in budget without finance.

    The wife saw a used car at a local dealers she liked so we asked for a px valuation. We gave the dealer the reg number and received a valuation only 35% under the price we originally paid for the car. Was pleased with this and although we did not mention the Cat C we assumed the dealer would know from their HPI.

    We took the car along and dealer said looks like it has had an accident repair as bonnet was slightly out of alignment and they would need to respray the dull wing. Dealer test drove it and commented on the new battery we fitted 6 months ago. The dealer went online on his mobile and declared the vehicle was not taxed and had no MOT!

    This was clearly wrong and as I produced the MOT certificate the dealer announced he had put the wrong reg in his checker and all was ok.

    I am still wondering if the dealer knew it was a Cat C and had made so much on his sale that he didn't care or if he has a shock coming.

    The replacement car is about £500 over the competition advertised price but has only covered 7000 miles and is an auto which is very rare in small cars, I could only find 4x advertised in the UK of similar year and all were 4x the mileage so I would be surprised if the dealer had more than £1k in the sale.



    Sent from my SM-G955F using Tapatalk
     
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  7. Smart320

    Smart320 Hardcore MB Enthusiast

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    I hope given your previous experience of car buying you took proper expert along with you to give the new purchase a really good check over, or are we likely to see this thread resurrected by you in 12 months time?:wallbash:
     
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  8. SL500AMG

    SL500AMG Hardcore MB Enthusiast

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    Bought this time from trade not private using a full HPI check and mechanic inspection!

    Sent from my SM-G955F using Tapatalk
     
  9. Smart320

    Smart320 Hardcore MB Enthusiast

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    Was only joking but good to hear that history will definitely not be repeated
     
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  10. SPX

    SPX MB Club Veteran

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    Second hand car dealers do get a bad rep but where do you think those cars come from?!

    People who have chopped them in because they don’t want to repair them and let some other sucker have the headaches!
     
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  11. neilrr

    neilrr MB Club Veteran

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    I've had FAR worse experiences buying cars from private punters than from dealers. Some private sellers seem to think it's obligatory to behave like a complete **** when selling a car.
     
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  12. Smart320

    Smart320 Hardcore MB Enthusiast

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    That's why I have not ever bought privately, except once from a forum member which turned out to be a great car !
     
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  13. markjay

    markjay MB Club Veteran

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    I am very fussed about the cars I buy :)

    With dealers you can see several cars in one go until you find the one you like.

    With a private sale, I'd have to travel quite a lot before I find 'the one'...
     
  14. GM87

    GM87 Member

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    I tend to agree that there’s always a few that will tar the rest with the same brush.

    Personally I try to fix or (at the very least) fully explain any issues when selling as I’d always be worth selling what I had private. Not a avid believer in karma but it’s nice to be nice too and not have something come back on you.

    My most recent buying experiences have been small dealers which on the face prob looked a little shady to some people.
    First one was “my best friend” and honestly didn’t trust him, but I checked the car well.
    The most recent for the merc last week - can’t fault the guy, full detailed FaceTime walk around on the ramp, replaced a few consumables he didn’t have to etc.
    Full of help and info on the brand/platform/specific car.

    A good shout is the general level of car in stock for me - if it’s all or mostly good and similar level then the risk of them passing on problems tends to lessen.
     
  15. John

    John MB Club Veteran

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    I wish.
    I normally perceive all traders as sharks until I know different.

    But then again, I do the same with private owners too!

    I've known a fair few people discover problem with their car and they just trade it in or WBAC it.

    So I can well imagine traders get stung too just as much as car-buying punters.

    I've owned 17 cars now and overall have been quite lucky I think.

    The only issue which springs to mind is despite buying from a main dealer, my CL had a broken headlight support at the back of it and some minor damage in that metalwork behind the front bumper.

    The front bumper and bodywork was immaculate so it was either someone reversing into it slowly or it had a shunt previously albeit the panels / paintwork were immaculate - so my guess is the former.

    It wasn't obvious and I didn't spot this when I bought it but I was able to fit an old bolt behind it in such a way that the headlight itself naturally wedged the bolt in (as well as the thread of the bolt and gravity), and the width of the bolt meant the headlight lined up perfectly (which is how I discovered it was wrong).

    So I will never know if they knew or not but it wasn't worth a bag of sand to replace it as it was bound to get smacked had I - so a cheap fix.

    I get problems on cars fixed usually (always if mechanical) so it wouldn't really happen now but my first and fourth cars were sold with known issues in the 90s.

    The first one (1987 Opel Manta GTE Exclusive) had quite a list (burnt clutch, noisy prop, incorrect rear axle, keyed and repaired badly, steel spare instead of alloy, had been smacked at the front twice albeit not major, duff battery which I had on charge overnight for the viewing the next day).

    The fourth one (1990 Vauxhall Astra GTE 16V) had a really noisy fourth piston and I often drove it very hard from cold as I had no mechanical sympathy then.
     
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  16. Rory

    Rory MB Club Veteran

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    Where does this "3 month warranty is mandatory" come from? It's so often quoted, just like here, unequivocally. But it's not correct.
     
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  17. markjay

    markjay MB Club Veteran

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    I have always refused to purchase any warranty from the dealer. Luckily I never needed to, but had there been any issues I would have relied on my statuary right.

    But obviously this only works when buying from a reputable dealer who will still be there in 6 or 12 months time...
     
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  18. OP
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    ringway

    ringway MB Club Veteran

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    Whether a dealer offers a warranty or not, the purchaser legally has a warranty of (IIRC) 3 months when buying from a dealer.
    This can not in any way be signed off as "sold as seen" or "part exchange bargain", either.
    By law, whether or not a warranty is offed by a dealer, you have one by way of recourse if the car is a stinker.
    If the dealer doesn't want to play ball, he will have to if a legal body gets involved.
     
  19. Dryce

    Dryce MB Club Veteran

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    I think '3 month warranty' oversimplifies the situation.

    Consumer right act 2015 and buying used car summarised here:

    Your legal rights | AA
     
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  20. John

    John MB Club Veteran

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    I wish.
    I've always understood is as up to 6 months responsibility but not necessarily a warranty.

    The kind of warranty you get with a used car is usually crap anyway.

    I'd rather have the £400 off the car and go it alone with a reasonable slush fund or buy from a main dealer - unless I knew the trader well and knew for sure what the score was (i.e. whether the warranty was worth the paper it probably isn't printed on).
     
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