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Thread: Used Car Yards

  1. #1
    1000+ Posts okalford's Avatar
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    Pardon me if this a dumb question but I'd be interested to know what others think. Is it possible to get a good car from a used car yard or are they mostly all sharks? I'm looking for a Peugeot and have only ever bought privately in the past. Also is there some sort of protection like they have to provide a warranty?

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  2. #2
    Gone Fishin' Ray Bell's Avatar
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    Used cars carry a warranty under law, but only over a certain price (used to be $1500, not sure now)...

    That was, I think, a 12-month warranty, but may have been a 3-month. Your local Consumer Affairs people will tell you.

    Then there are 'extended warranties'... these are basically insurance policies that you and the dealer more or less take out together. They, on the one hand, commit you to specific service commitments and on the other tie you to the dealer and a lot of heartache (my opinion).

    The specifically exclude basically anything that can go wrong that will cause the things they really do cover. Leaks, for instance, are excluded.

    A good thing if you happen to buy a car that's going to blow its engine for no known reason... otherwise just a waste of money.

    Now, as for the dealer-commitment warranty... well, the dealer has to allow for that in his price, doesn't he? As well as his rent, sales commissions, tarting up the thing so you'll like the look of it...

    You might find a good buy, but you're better off, in my opinion, to buy privately. And that, you will note, is not because dealers are sharks. If you strike a shark it's worse.

  3. #3
    Fellow Frogger! Ralph's Avatar
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    As Ray said, private buying can be better. You generally get the car for a cheaper price. It's a good idea to get the car inspected by a approved RACV/NRMA etc inspector, especially if you are paying a bit for it.


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  4. #4
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    Some dealers though (particularly one in Sydney - Damon Beck at Gladesville) - have a great reputation for selling good cars at good prices. The used car warranty provided by law by a dealer is 90 days in NSW - I think the car has to be under 10 years old and more than $10 000?

    I think I'd feel uncomfortable buying from a used car dealer who I'd never dealt with before though.

    Derek.

  5. #5
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    This question also sounds like “Is it safe to eat food that has gone past its best before date”. In some cases yes, in some cases no.

    Dealing with a dealer means that there is a possibility you are likely to be affored some sort of consumer protection. Buying privately means you have no consumer protection at all. The car could be rebirthed, still under finance, a cut and shut job or been subject to any other combination of nasty previous lives. Sure buying privately can be cheaper, but there may be a reason why it is cheap.

    Then again there are some nasty dealers out there, but there are also a lot of sharks in disguise as private vendors as well. Probably the closer you get to a franchised or long known reputable specialist the easier the dealing will be. Then again if you are shopping for a $1,500 runabout that is something that you may just have to take a chance depending on the quality of offering.

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    I just bought an Mi16 from a dealership - but it had just been traded and I was welcome to contact the previous owner. After a few questions to this guy, I was quite comfortable that he was not associated with the dealer. The car is top class. A few tweaks and a bit of pottering and it'll be a great car.

    As for warranty, in WA at least there's a mileage and age and dollar limit on warranties. Cars over $4000, less than 12 years old, and having travelled less than 180,000km have a statutory warranty. I think it starts at three months and goes up to 12 months over a certain purchase price - $18K?

    There's an implied warranty on the car's fitness for its intended purpose ('merchantable quality') over the statutory warranty as above. If the engine blows pretty soon after you leave you can argue that the car was not fit for its intended purpose, so long as there was no understanding about its condition - like, no evidence that you knew it was on its last legs, or your inspection should not have reasonably uncovered the faults.

    One thing with dealers is that you GENERALLY don't have to worry about the vehicle being encumbered, as that is meant to be their worry nowadays.

    My car had no warranty - and in fact you sign a standard fair trading document stating that you understand this - but I was comfortable that it was pretty good.

    Good hunting

    Stuey

  7. #7
    dbc
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    I bought my Peugeot from a used car dealer. I did not trust anything he said, had the car independently checked, and contacted the previous owner. In the end I offered him a lower price based on the minor work needed to fix a few problems. I think he was happy to see the car go because he knew next to nothing about Peugeots. The previous owner - a Peugeot enthusiast sold me on the car more than the dealer, who was a slippery character. I have had no problems with the car since. The dealer offered a 3 month warranty which was next to useless. He did however guarantee clear title.

    As I said at the start of this post, don't trust a thing most dealers tell you. Get the car independently assessed by the RACV, or better still there is a bloke in Melbourne named Elliott who runs a mobile car servicing business. He is a French car specialist - drives a Mi16 - and trained as an apprentice with Citroen. He would go through the car thoroughly for you and probably cheaper than the RACV. He operates The French Garage in Moorabbin servicing Pugs, Cits and Renault.
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    Whether it is a private car or used car dealer, it is always caveat emptor "buyer beware". I would like to see some form of service records and real receipts or at least be able to contact the previous owner or have it checked independently by a Pug specialist if it is an expensive purchase. I bought my pug from a used car dealer who serviced them but was a bit wary as well, their warranty was worth jack s**t when it developed coil and diaphragm problems during that period. I had it checked by my usual pug dealer and got it fixed through them imstead, paid the price and basically forgot about the used car dealer's warranty. Just my 2 cents
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