The consumer’s issue:
“I am unhappy, as I believe that the vehicle I purchased was not subject to satisfactory checks prior to me buying it. Since I got it, I have had issues with the wheel alignment, wiper blades, headlights, air con re-gassing and the front and lower suspension arms. I am therefore seeking a refund of the money I paid to have these problems rectified.”
The accredited business’ response:
- We maintain that we have been completely transparent with all the work that has been documented and carried out to the customer’s car.
- We did complete a steering wheel check and our controller verified that this was within the vehicle manufacturer’s tolerances.
- The wipers were tested and found to be functional and operational in line with manufacturer standards.
- We agreed to cover the full cost of replacing the headlights at our expense, and the air conditioning was found to be fully functional pre-sale.
- An MOT was carried out on the car, and as part of the pre-owned assessment, the suspension was also inspected and met the manufacturer’s specifications.
- The consumer has a two-year warranty that covers the car’s principal components, including suspension and air conditioning, if manufacturing defects are found.
The adjudication outcome:
- The Motor Ombudsman adjudicator agreed that the customer did have a valid warranty that he could have claimed under. However, warranties are in addition to his legal rights, and the consumer pursued this as a sales issue, seeking reimbursement for the repairs under the Consumer Rights Act which he was entitled to do.
- The adjudicator decided that a reasonable person would not accept this vehicle as satisfactory quality given the magnitude of issues present.
- The adjudicator did not believe that the car’s price was lowered to reflect the issues raised, as the business maintained that the vehicle met all pre-check requirements.
- As such, the adjudicator did not believe the car was of satisfactory quality and recommended the business reimburses the consumer for the money he had paid to get the vehicle fixed.
- The customer and accredited business accepted the outcome as recommended by The Motor Ombudsman adjudicator. The business accepted on the condition that the consumer provided them with invoices for the repairs. These were supplied by the customer who was then refunded in full and the case was closed.