Purchasing a vehicle is a significant expense, even if you plan on visiting a used car dealership. Just because you’re purchasing second-hand, that doesn’t mean you should be sold a substandard product.
The vehicle you leave with should be safe and as described. Usually, this is precisely what happens but that’s not always the case.
Auto dealership fraud occurs when salespeople use dishonest and underhanded tactics to sell you a vehicle. Outlined below are some of the more common fraudulent tactics applied by auto dealers.
Hiding mechanical faults
The dealership may have informed you that the vehicle has passed safety tests and inspections. According to them, the engine is sound and the brakes work as they should. Unfortunately, a matter of hours after you’ve left the lot, your car breaks down. There’s an oil leak that has not been reported.
Sometimes, auto dealerships will apply temporary fixes just to get rid of the vehicle. If the vehicle was sold to you as safe and roadworthy, such conduct may amount to auto dealer fraud.
Hiding the true mileage
Used cars are bound to have significant mileage on their meters. Generally, if this isn’t excessively high then there’s no issue. However, high-mileage cars are less desirable, and auto dealers know this.
One fraudulent tactic that may be applied is rolling the numbers back on the odometer. This gives a false reading of mileage which gives the buyer the impression that the vehicle has done fewer miles than it really has.
As a consumer, you have legal rights. If you believe that your auto dealer acted fraudulently, be sure to look further into your options.