The consumer’s issue:
“I purchased a brand-new sports car in 2019, which came with diamond cut alloys. Shortly after I took delivery of the vehicle, I inspected the wheels and found that they were either all faulty, or had been refurbished at the factory. I was very unhappy about this, because I bought a new vehicle, so the wheels should also be new.
I raised a dispute with the vehicle manufacturer, but they rejected my complaint because they said they could not rule out that I had damaged the wheels myself. I know categorically that this was not the case. To resolve my complaint, I am looking for the manufacturer to replace the four alloys at no cost to myself so that I am not left out of pocket.”
The accredited business’ response:
- The consumer contacted us to inform us that the brand-new vehicle they purchased suffered from faulty wheels and that they believed them to be factory refurbished.
- We investigated this complaint and found that, as the vehicle had been used for almost 18 months prior to the consumer calling us, we could not know for certain that the fault with the wheels was not caused by external influences.
- For this reason, we decided not to contribute to the cost of repairs or replace the alloys under our warranty.
The adjudication outcome:
- The Motor Ombudsman adjudicator reviewed the evidence provided and concluded that there had been a breach of the Code of Practice for New Cars.
- The consumer had provided technical evidence which suggested the wheels had been reworked at the factory due to the facial runout being quite visible.
- This demonstrated that there was a fault with the wheels which was not the result of external factors and, as the vehicle was still within its warranty period, the manufacturer was liable for the costs of the repair.
- The adjudicator therefore recommended that the business replaced all four alloys on the vehicle at no cost to the customer.
- Both parties agreed to the adjudication outcome, and the consumer received the replacement of the four alloy wheels as recommended by the adjudicator, thereby closing the case.