Currently reading: Rental and fleet car mis-selling scandal could lead to compensation
Consumers who bought cars sold as having one owner only, which was actually a fleet or rental company, could be reimbursed up to 100% of the car’s value
Jimi Beckwith
News
2 mins read
8 January 2018

Buyers of used cars could be in line to receive compensation as advertising authorities clamp down on cars improperly labelled and sold as second-hand when the previous owner was a rental firm or other multiple-driver fleet. 

Up to 100% of the car’s value could be rewarded to misled consumers, depending on the details of the case.

The Times reports that the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) will warn manufacturers and dealers in the coming weeks not to mislabel such cars. 

Hundreds of thousands of consumers are potentially affected, having not been told that their cars, often advertised as having one previous owner, were formerly rental cars or fleet cars.

Last year, Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA) and Alfa Romeo were chastised by the ASA for this reason, having sold two cars that had been used for contractor training and company car purposes. 

The ASA asserted that cars from these sources “were more likely to have been subjected to wear and tear”. FCA subsequently revealed that interim measures had already been set up to stop the practice.

Campaign group Used Car Scandal, set up by the man who brought the case against FCA, has received around 200 further cases of this type, 

Following the FCA ruling, the ASA released the following statement: “If you’re a fleet operator selling ex-business-use vehicles, the ASA will expect information about the ex-fleet nature of the vehicle to be included in your advertising.  

“This is because it considers it to be material information that would influence a consumer’s transactional decision in purchasing a vehicle. Furthermore, if an ex-business use vehicle was used by multiple users while part of your fleet, that is also likely to be considered material information that must be disclosed in the ad."

The SMMT responded to the growing concerns, saying: "SMMT doesn't comment on individual ASA cases. Ex fleet vehicles can be a great used car choice, if as with any other vehicle it can be demonstrated they have been maintained and serviced properly and offer good value for money."

"We advise every consumer to carry out all the relevant background checks before committing to buying a used-car. Simple steps such as checking the log book, using the DVLA’s vehicle information checker and verifying MOT history can all offer peace of mind to car buyers."

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xxxx 8 January 2018

Buyer beware

It's the first question, who owned the car before, it's that simple. If garage doesn't know or don't want to tell you walk away.

As a footnote if you try to pass a car onto WeBuyAnyCar etc and they see a previous ex-rental owned car that was owned for 6 months they check it over more careful because ex-fleet/rental cars are sold on as repairables if they need to be taken off the road for some time.

If people aren't aware of the above I recommend they save for 6 more months and buy new or a pre-registered car.

Symanski 8 January 2018

The sensible one!

xxxx wrote:

As a footnote if you try to pass a car onto WeBuyAnyCar etc and they see a previous ex-rental owned car that was owned for 6 months they check it over more careful because ex-fleet/rental cars are sold on as repairables if they need to be taken off the road for some time.

 

And that's the problem.   When you go to sell it again, unaware you've bought an ex-rental, and the value is lower because of it.   You've paid a "one-owner" premium only to find when you sell you're getting the "ex-rental" offer.

 

Thank you!   I'm surprised the others above can't see that.

 

Marc 8 January 2018

Symanski wrote:

Symanski wrote:

xxxx wrote:

As a footnote if you try to pass a car onto WeBuyAnyCar etc and they see a previous ex-rental owned car that was owned for 6 months they check it over more careful because ex-fleet/rental cars are sold on as repairables if they need to be taken off the road for some time.

 

And that's the problem.   When you go to sell it again, unaware you've bought an ex-rental, and the value is lower because of it.   You've paid a "one-owner" premium only to find when you sell you're getting the "ex-rental" offer.

 

Thank you!   I'm surprised the others above can't see that.

 

How would anyone know?

scotty5 8 January 2018

Ignorance perhaps?

Symanski wrote:

xxxx wrote:

As a footnote if you try to pass a car onto WeBuyAnyCar etc and they see a previous ex-rental owned car that was owned for 6 months they check it over more careful because ex-fleet/rental cars are sold on as repairables if they need to be taken off the road for some time.

 

And that's the problem.   When you go to sell it again, unaware you've bought an ex-rental, and the value is lower because of it.   You've paid a "one-owner" premium only to find when you sell you're getting the "ex-rental" offer.

 

Thank you!   I'm surprised the others above can't see that.

 

Have you guys ever sold your car to an Auction site like WeBuyAny, We Want Any or others? It doesn;t sound like you have. You're asked to accurately describe the car and you are asked how many owners does it have. When they physically assess your car, you're given a price. At that point they've never even looked at the V5 so how on earth do they know who the previous owner is?

The majority of cars I've bought are either pre-reg, ex-demo, or Manufacturer management cars. Not once has anyone who I've sold the car to, whether it be an auction site, part-ex or dealer, asked who the previous owner was. Nobody is interested in that. As long as they have a good clean car with full service history that's all they're interested in.

I 100% agree with others. I'm the first to criticise salepeople for being economical with the facts, but if they correctly advertised their product as having one previous owner, they've done nothing wrong.

xxxx 9 January 2018

You're wrong.

"Have you guys ever sold your car to an Auction site like WeBuyAny, We Want Any or others? It doesn;t sound like you have." - Yes I have so you're wrong to start with. They looked at the V5 before looking at the car you dummy, said about the first owner being a company related to a rental company and they sometimes sell them early as it's not worth a rental car being off the road to be repair.

So before casting accusations about learn about selling cars first!

Marc 9 January 2018

xxxx wrote:

xxxx wrote:

"Have you guys ever sold your car to an Auction site like WeBuyAny, We Want Any or others? It doesn;t sound like you have." - Yes I have so you're wrong to start with. They looked at the V5 before looking at the car you dummy, said about the first owner being a company related to a rental company and they sometimes sell them early as it's not worth a rental car being off the road to be repair.

So before casting accusations about learn about selling cars first!

Just because you were doesn't mean to say others were. No, I never have, but the issue of selling the car on was not necessarily the point a few were trying make. The point was trying distinguish between an owner and a user. It may also not be entirely clear from the logbook or history checks. As you alluded to, a car may have been owned by a subsidiary of a rental firm, some are not even purchased by rental fleets, they're leased directly from manufacturers. The car I have now is registered to KIA, but I'm the user, after t it's 24 month hire period is up it will be fed into the approved used scheme, no one will be able to ID me as the previous user as I was never the owner, KIA UK fleet services is, or was.

fhp111 7 January 2018

Shock

A good chunk of cars are ex fleet vehicles.

If your happy with the condition and presentation of the car enough to purchase it and it causes no issues as a result of it being a fleet vehicle, I really can't see what entitlement you should have to compensation. Especially if you weren't bothered enough to try and find out about the previous owner when you bought the car.

Only if the car was physically advertised as "One Lady Owner" or "One Private Owner" or otherwise deliberately deceived should you have any right to some comeback. One owner is not deceptive for a fleet vehicle. Your V5 will show one keeper, and it won't have any effect on the future valuation of the car.

Having worked in the industry, fleet and ex rentals are no worse in general in terms of condition than most privately owned vehicles, which in many cases are a disgrace! They do however benefit from better servicing and maintenance in most cases.

Much fuss over nothing. Consumer rights in many cases are breeding entitled and moronic consumers who think its their god given right for everything to be somone elses responsibility.

Peter Cavellini 7 January 2018

To be honest.....?

Honesty, that’s what we’re talking about, Car vendors in the Eye of the Law at the moment haven’t broken any Law, yes the Car they bought might have been driven by numerous Drivers, some good some bad,but, if the Vendor gives a warranty with it or the balance of the Warranty left then to some extent there’s not much to worry about.

Marc 7 January 2018

Peter Cavellini wrote:

Peter Cavellini wrote:

Honesty, that’s what we’re talking about, Car vendors in the Eye of the Law at the moment haven’t broken any Law, yes the Car they bought might have been driven by numerous Drivers, some good some bad,but, if the Vendor gives a warranty with it or the balance of the Warranty left then to some extent there’s not much to worry about.

Quite right. Dealers are happy to advertise a car as a 'one owner' but sometimes are not so forthcoming as to who that owner was. But I'm still struggling to see how this can be so wrong, or wrong enough to describe it as a scandal. What's worse, a 6-12 month old ex hire car that's been valeted and had fluids checked every few days, serviced on the dot and any scuffs or scrapes sorted. Or a 2-3 year old ex pcp that's had family abuse, dog in the back and a patchy service history.

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