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Arnold Clark - Help please!!!

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I purchased a VW GOLF GT TDI 2.0 from Arnold Clark on 22nd January, 2009, about 5 weeks ago. All sounds normal but as this car was delivered from another branch so i didn't get a chance to take a look at it and collected it in the evening.


1) The next day I noticed that the Mileage was 39,212, this was surprising as my paperwork states the mileage I purchased the car at was 37,168 - is this legal?? The car was also filthy with footprints on the ceiling, loads of dog hairs, scratches and white stains on the seats, has his car been used since it was initially brought into Arnold Clark by the original owner.


When I went back the next day I was told that this wouldn't affect the selling price and not to worry about it.


2) The car had no handbook or service history... When I asked the salesman at the time, I was told that they probably had it at the garage where it was stored and they would contact the garage and have it sent out to me.


I phoned yesterday after finding out the rear left passenger seatbelt is not there and was told to ring servicing to have it repaired. Isn't this a health and safety risk, and would this constitute the car not being fit for purpose in terms of the sale of goods act. I also asked about the service history and handbook which was going to be chased up but was told that there was no service history or handbook with the car.




3) I found the back seats were wet when I got in the car this morning and traced the leak from the boot door. Upon looking closer this looks more and more like an accident repair from a rear shunt. And I found dry vomit behind the spare tyre.


This really looks suspicious to me and I am getting closer to taking this right back to the showroom and asking for my money back. I appreciate that I should have given this car a thorough check after all the horror stories I have heard about arnold clark, but wrongly trusted the garage.


please can anyone offer me advice on this??:(



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The seat belt missing means you are driving an illegal car as the MoT certificate you should have is not valid.


Take it right back to them with a list of the problems, tell them you want it sorted and the car valeted or you will take it to the VW dealer to be fixed and bill them for the repairs.


If it was advertised as full SH, then demad the books.

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So you bought the car without seeing it, and collected it in the dark:eek:

Surprising as it might seem the seat belt is not needed for a mot, if it has 3 rear seats and 1 has a 3 point inertia belt, only 1 of the other seats need a belt.(was when I last tested).

Sounds like you need to give it back and get your money back if possible, I don't know the law for this, but if the mileage is higher than they said by 2k, then that could be the get-out.

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my fault for not checking the car out, hands up for that, i didn;t stop to think that arnold clark for all their seemingly professional image would try to fleece me like that. i'm going to phone trading standards on monday to see if I do have a case for mis-selling regarding the mileage under the sale of goods act.


thanks conniff, i know if I am driving with 3 passengers in the back then I am automatically breaking the law so will be taking the car into Arnold Clark on monday morning, i'm going to get under the car tomorrow morning and have a look for anything that might show any accident damage too.


will keep you guys posted

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just read this on another site


"I purchased a car and also bought a Service Plan for the car. The Service Plan was included in the Finance Agreement.

After 2-1/2 months of problems we rejected "resinded" the car. We chose another car from stock and are happy with it.

There was outstanding finance of approx £1000 and the dealership called and asked us to pay this off as it was tied to the car and they could not sell the car onwards. I called Consumer Direct and asked them how I stood thinking why should I pay for something which is useless to me and not refundable or transferable to our new car.

I was told that when the car was rejected the whole deal including all finance and service agreement was void as it falls under the Consumer Credit Act 1974 section 75 and also under the Sale of goods act 1979 as ammended.

I called the finance company and they told me it is up to the Dealer to inform the finance company this has happened and the dealership is the only person who can cancel the finance even though the finance is in my name.

In one way it is a bad idea to put the service agreement in with your finance due to the fact if you trade in the car you cannot transfer it to your new car. In another way it is good that I did this because when I rejected the car then everything is then void.

This also shows that the dealership either new this and tried to get me to pay it off so they didn't have the hassle of this or they don't know which is even worse!!

I am now waiting on the dealership to sort this out!!

star.jpgstar.jpg at 23rd Oct 2008, 01:14PM""



As it has only been 5 weeks I am entitled to reject this car, so that i sgoing to be my next step, i'm beginning to wish i never went to this place!!!

Edited by freakyleaky
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thanks conniff, i know if I am driving with 3 passengers in the back then I am automatically breaking the law


Actually, you're not.


Seatbelts only have to be worn if fitted. There is no requirement for a third seat belt in the rear of a vehicle and providing it is insured and type-approved for the extra passenger, you are perfectly legal - if foolhardy.

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It's not a third belt that's missing, it is one of the rear belts. If I remember correctly up to 1981 it was front belts only and from 1981 they had to be fitted in the back as well.


Corect me if I'm wrong please.

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Hi guys,

It is not the third seatbelt that is missing, the middle one and the one behind the driver seat are present, in a 3 door car you would only expect to fit two people in the back and hands up for anyone willing to sit in the middle??

So that must breach the sale of goods act stating goods must be fit for reasonable purpose.

However I’ve managed to dig this up last night:

The Consumer Protection from Unfair Trading Regulations 2008 have replaced the Trade Descriptions Act. This is a wide-ranging piece of legislation which makes it a criminal offence for a trader engaged in commercial practices to mislead in respect to goods and services. The misleading element could be in the form of an actual action or description, or in the omission of facts about the goods or services.

Odometer readings

The mileage indicated by the odometer of a car is a description. It will be regarded as an accurate indication of the distance traveled by the vehicle, unless positive and effective steps are taken to ensure that customers are informed that it is meaningless and not to be relied upon.

You must make it clear to customers if an odometer reading is incorrect. Letting the consumer see the incorrect mileage can be a misleading action as can any verbal or written statement. Not telling the consumer that the mileage is incorrect can be a misleading omission.

What are the offences relating to mileage descriptions?

Making a misleading statement by any means: this could include altering an odometer reading (e.g. from a higher to lower figure or to zero)*, or making other false claims (written or oral) about a vehicle's mileage.

Supplying or offering to supply a vehicle that has been subject to a misleading action or omission: this could include simply having the vehicle on the forecourt or selling it with an incorrect odometer reading.

It is also an offence to include a false mileage in an advertisement or on, or near, the vehicle, for example, 'low mileage' stickers.

On the odd occasion when a car is offered for sale and its odometer unit is found to be faulty and needs to be replaced - either with a new or second-hand unit, a trader must disclose the true mileage and the reason for the difference to any prospective customer.

What are the consequences of non-compliance?

Failure to comply with the Consumer Protection from Unfair Trading Regulations 2008 is a criminal offence. The maximum penalty on conviction at a magistrates' court is a fine of £5,000 per offence. The maximum penalty on conviction in a crown court is an unlimited fine and/or two-years imprisonment. In addition, a trader may risk losing his consumer credit licence. It is also possible for a trading standards authority to take injunctive action against the seller.

The offences described at points two and three above would apply even if a trader did not know that the indicated mileage was incorrect, however, the Regulations also provide for a defence. The legislation requires traders to take responsibility for descriptions applied to vehicles by having checks in place regarding their accuracy.

This is my plan of action, tomorrow I am going into the dealership and will ask for the sales manager, I am going to explain that:

“when I checked the car out the day following my purchase – 23rd January 2009 I noticed there was no service history or vehicle handbook in the car and it was 2k miles more than the mileage stated on my invoice and warranty documents. I did go into the dealership on the 26th January 2009 and spoke to the salesman who sold me the car, he said he'd contact the branch and chase up the documents and not to worry about the 2k miles, he also ignored what i said about the car being absolutely filthy. I waited for the salesman to call back with no luck. Last Wednesday 25th February 2009 when attempting to secure a child I found there to be no seatbelt on the seat directly behind the front passenger seat. I promptly reported this to the same salesman on the morning of 26th February 2009 who advised that I would need to speak to the servicing department and when I asked about the service history he said there was none and that he was trying to get hold of another handbook.

On the 28th February 2009, I discovered a strange smell coming from the vents and assumed a problem with the AC, however when I looked at the back I found that the seats behind the front passenger seats were wet. I had a look in the boot and found that the left hand side was all wet and when lifting the cover the spare tyre and surrounding areas were also wet. I immediately called Arnold clark and was told the salesman would cal me back. However the receptionist called back as the salesman had told her to tell me that I needed to speak to servicing”

Upon taking a further look I have found that there is evidence of welding infront of the spare tyre where the bootlid would be closed. The nuts which secure the hinges for the bootlid are scratched, indicating the bootlid has been previously removed, there is a visible gap between the rear nearside tyre and the panel above of up to 3cm when compared to the opposite side. This all points to an accident repair!!

On this not I am going to quote the sale of goods act and focus on the missing seat belt and I also will point out that the bottom part of the back seat isn’t secure on that side.

I am also going to state the above act “The Consumer Protection from Unfair Trading Regulations 2008” when I refuse repairs and reject the car. I am going to demand total refund or a replacement vehicle of the same value which I will scrutinize fully in daylight and have an RAC inspection before accepting.

Any advice on this will be appreciated, I am going to phone trading standards first before going to the dealership.





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I've just spoken to consumer direct and the finance agreement is voided by the incorrect mileage under the

Supply of Goods (Implied Terms) Act 1973 – Hire Purchase Agreement



I am eligible to recover all payments and my deposit :) will let you know if this actually happens

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Good on you ! Keep us updated.












If I have been helpful please tip my scales


Any advice/comments I give are based solely on personal experience, if in doubt please consult an expert.

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For reference, below is a copy of the letter I sent out yesterday - heres hoping :confused:

Dear Sir/Madam,

Finance Agreement Number: XXXXXX

Supply of Goods (Implied Terms) Act 1973 (as amended)




On 22nd January, 2009, I entered into a Hire Purchase agreement with you for a Volkswagen Golf 2.0 GT TDi from Arnold Clark Automobiles Limited.

The following problems have arisen:


  • The hire purchase agreement, used qualifying vehicle invoice, Arnold Clark warranty and servicing documents state the mileage at time of purchase was 37,168. However on the day following purchase I actually looked at the odometer and saw that the mileage was actually over 39,000. I pointed this out to the salesman 'Chris Fish' (who sold the car to me) and the fact that there was no service history or handbook with the car I was told not to worry about it. I have since found out that this is criminal offence.
  • There is no seatbelt on the rear left passenger seat, this is another breach as the car would not pass its MOT and is therefore not roadworthy or fit for the purpose.
  • There are signs on the rear nearside of the car to suggest this has been involved in a RTA and subsequently repaired. However I was left to discover it over this weekend and not informed at the time of sale.




I have taken legal advice as a number of problems have become apparent in the 5 weeks that I have been in possession of the car. I was informed that the misleading information regarding the mileage of the car contravening the Supply of Goods (Implied Terms) Act 1973 (as amended). I was not given the opportunity to test-drive the car only told that it was ready to pick up on the evening of 22nd January, 2009. Unfortunately I was unable to carry out an inspection of the car until 25th January 2009, since then I have been contacting Arnold Clark and who have avoided me on every issue, and recently told me to speak to servicing. I have been advised today that it is you responsibility and not the dealership to resolve this matter hence this letter today.




I have stopped using the car following the legal advice but will continue to make payments under protest although none are due within the next 14 days. I expect all advanced payments including my deposit, last months payment of £261 and subsequent monthly payments to be refunded fully. The mileage is currently 40,267 as of 2nd March 2009.

I understand that under the above legislation, it is your responsibility to resolve the matter and would therefore ask that this is done within the next 14 days. You can contact me on XXXXXXXXXX




Yours Sincerely

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  • 3 weeks later...

i got a phone call yesterday from the General Manager at Arnold Clark!! the mileage discrepancy cannot be defended so I said I want a refund and he's sorting it, lets see when I actually get my money

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  • 3 months later...

I did get a full refund as all my threats went via the finance company. Although I had them on a technicality with the odometer reading so they had no leg to stand on. I should have gone to watchdog just to let people know how bad this company is!! Went to the garage last week and all the salesmen just scarpered rapidly haha

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