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Vulcan Motor Company, Norwich - Problems with a 2nd hand car sale


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I found a car on auto trader that I liked the look of. It was being sold by a car dealer in Norwich, some 60 odd miles from where I live.

 

I rang him and asked if I could go and see it and test drive it, and would I be able to take it away the same day as I lived so far and would be going up by train.

He told me it had failed it's previous mot which was done in 2020 and hadn't been re MOT'd yet but if I was committed to buying it he wanted £250 deposit to put it through the mot and get any work done on it and not let anyone else buy it in the mean time. I'd been looking for a car for ages and quite liked the look of this particular car which have been hard to find so I agreed.

 

It failed it's mot and there were quite a few bits that needed doing. New tyre, new wipers, repositioning of headlamp, new roll bar joints. A week went by and I booked my train ticket for the weekend. I emailed him to tell him I would be up at the weekend  and he told me I shouldn't have booked it. There were parts still waiting to come in.

 

The following week I rang for an update and was told one of his mechanics had had to isolate. He said he would let me know when to book. The week after that he called me and said it had got all the parts, the guys were back and he would have a day for me to collect in the week. He rang me on the Tuesday last week and said everything had been done. It would have its mot done either that afternoon or the next morning and would be ready for collection  so I booked my ticket for the next day. 

 

I emailed him to confirm and he rang me saying I didn't tell you to book your tickets! I told him I had taken the day off work now on his say so that the car would be ready (3 weeks after paying a deposit) and I would be up the next day. He reluctantly agreed but said I may have to wait around as his garage may have other cars to do. I arrived In Norwich about 1, plotted up in a pub then he came to collect me from the town around half 4. He showed me the new mot which had no advisories, we signed all the paperwork, I paid him the balance of the £3500 and off I went.

 

Driving home I heard what sounded to me like a knocking noise but wasn't sure if it was the rumble of the road so when I got him I text him (as he asked me to) to let him know I'd got home and that the car had driven lovely but I had heard this noise. I never told my son about the noise but asked him to have a drive of it and he came back and said there's a knocking noise, did you hear it? I never had a text, email or call from the garage. So all this was Wednesday last week.

 

Tuesday this week, the car was making a loud noise I described as scraping. It was really loud and didn't sound at all right. i text the garage and told him. He responded and said not to drive it but to get it recovered to a garage for diagnostics and to let him know what they say. I had my son drive it again and he came back and said it was a grinding noise, it was something to do with the brakes maybe.

 

I took it to my local garage on Wednesday and asked them to have a look for me. Thursday I called them and was told the rear caliper had ceased solid. They had replaced it for me at a cost of £190 + vat. I called the dealer and told him and he has said that as a gesture of goodwill he will offer me half the money.

 

I explained that having only had the car 1 week I shouldn't be expected to pay anything for a repair and he told me I should have taken back to him as if I bought something from sainsbury that was off I wouldn't have taken it back to tesco! I explained the car was unsafe to drive home let alone another 60 odd miles to him and having it recovered to him would have cost a fortune. He has told me to send him the bill and he will decide on what to do and let me know today.

 

Am I within my rights to insist he pays this bill or takes the car back?

 

Sorry for the long post but wanted to give you the whole story 

Edited by dx100uk
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Hi

 

Apologies, Vulcan Motor Company, Norwich

 

Yes by bank transfer, that was all he would accept - I have proof on my bank statement that this was paid

 

He has just emailed me back to say 

 

Quote

The technician - mot tester who worked on your Honda isn't back to work until Monday. I have asked for him to call me with his opinion, and the costs of a brake caliper and pads and labour. (the cost that I would pay in the trade to undertake the repair)
I will get back to you next week.

 

Edited by Fringer
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  • dx100uk changed the title to Vulcan Motor Company, Norwich - Problems with a 2nd hand car sale

The garage who fitted the new caliper said they could see quite a few new parts had been fitted

 

The garage still have the old caliper, yes. They have to pay a surcharge on them (about £50) so have said they will take a photo and send to me but unless I, or the dealer, want to pay the surcharge, they wont let me have it.

 

I hadn't read the risks about bank transfers no 😬

 

I would prefer to return the car now. The way this guy has dealt with this makes me not want to do business with him at all 

 

Does it complicate the matter that I have had the work done by a different garage as he implied?

Would that cause any problems with me wanting to return the car as he has the right to repair?

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Absolutely, sorry I missed that question

 

The MOT was carried out by his usual garage that he uses for MOTs 

 

I didn't actually ask the garage to fix the problem, just to check what the problem was but he misheard me and said that as it was so bad he had thought I wanted the work carried out straight away.

 

He said there is no way it should have passed the MOT

 

I did say this to the dealer and was told that was unfair thing to say and I cannot talk about things that have happened in the past? 

 

Could I, at this point reply to his email stating these facts and request a full refund?

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I can have the garage look over it again next week to see if there is anything wrong

 

The total amount of the car was £3,500

 

The bill from the garage was £190+ VAT=£228 which hasn't been paid yet so technically I am not out of pocket 

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I have emailed the dealer this morning with the following email

 

Quote

 

I have taken legal advice on this matter as I have experienced this problem within a week of buying the car of which I did tell you about a noise on the way home the very day I purchased the car.
Having only been offered half of the cost of repair which is totally unacceptable, I have been advised that I am entitled to return the car to you and receive a full refund, as well as the costs of the repair to be covered by you direct to Wivenhoe Autos who carried out the repair.
I have a photo of the caliper that was removed from the car which clearly shows this car was sold in an unroadworthy condition and therefore you have committed an offence under section 75 of the Road Traffic Act 1988.
I am working all week and therefore am only available to return the car to you on Saturday 4th December. Please confirm this is a suitable day for you.

 

 

 
and have had this response
 
Quote

I will hand this situation over to my solicitor, and they will deal with it accordingly, and in line with legal guidance, from here on out you will recieve a response directly from them, and they will be advising and answering all of your questions and e mails on behalf of Vulcan Motor Company Ltd. They have 14 days from the date of this e mail to respond.

 

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Letter of Claim

 

I am writing to you with regard to the above vehicle purchased from you on 17th November 2021.

 

The amount paid for this vehicle was £250.00 deposit paid on 28th October 2021 and the balance of £3,250.00 paid on the day of collection of the vehicle on 17th November 2021 giving a total of £3,500.00. A statement showing these amounts leaving my account is enclosed.

 

This vehicle was purchased after an MOT was carried out on the vehicle on the day of collection of 17th November 2021.

 

On the journey home a strange noise could be heard which was communicated to Matthew by text message. Originally I thought it was maybe the sound of the rumble on the road but having got the vehicle home, I asked my son to take it for a drive. He confirmed there was a noise. I did not receive a response from Matthew in regard to this message.

 

On Tuesday 23rd November 2021, driving home from work I noticed this noise had got extremely loud and again sent a text message to Matthew stating an awful ‘scraping noise’. Matthew responded asking me to take it to a workshop for diagnosis. He stated it would be better to get it recovered in case of causing any further damage and asked me to call him in the office when I had more information.

 

It was taken to my local garage and I was contacted by them on Thursday 24th November 2021 to advise that the rear caliper had ceased solid and had been repaired as was not safe to drive. I was advised of the cost for the part and labour which totalled £190.00 + VAT.

 

I contacted Matthew by phone and advised him of the outcome from the garage and was offered ‘as a gesture of goodwill’ half of the amount towards the repair. I stated I was not happy to pay anything towards a repair on a vehicle I had only had for 7 days. I asked if the car had a warranty and was told yes but i had not returned the car to Vulcan, I had had the work carried out elsewhere and had I have taken it back to him, he would have only paid trade prices to his usual garage for the repair. I did explain that the car was unsafe to drive and had I had it recovered to Norwich from Essex, it would have cost a lot of money.

 

Matthew then requested that the invoice from the garage be made out to his company and to send it over by email which was done later that evening. I received a response email stating Matthew would speak to the technician who worked on the car for his advice and trade prices for labour and materials and he would contact me the following week.

 

Today, I have emailed Vulcan Motor Company to advise that I would like to return the car for a full refund and I have been advised that it will passed to the solicitor for Vulcan Motor Company and I would only deal with them going forward.

 

Funds can be made direct to my account

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Ok understood

 

I have copied your letter word for word and am on my way to the post office to send recorded delivery

 

If bank transfer is not the way to go, what is when buying a new car? I thought I was doing it the right way, and he had a good reputation, I did check the garage out previous to purchase. 

I seem to have the worst luck with used cars. 
I bought one in June which also had a serious problem but luckily the dealer just said bring it back, I'll give you a refund, I didn't even have to ask that time! 

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I've had a response to my letter, by email

 

Quote

We acknowledge receipt of your signed for letter on 1/12/21

Along with your previous email dated 29/11/21 your letter has been forwarded to our law firm for legal advise, as in matters such as these the law is designed to protect both parties, when writing, receiving, and responding to letters, and the guidance for a response is usually 14 working days from receipt of any correspondence, as per my previous email all correspondence will be replied to by our law firm as they will be acting on our behalf at all times.

 

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I emailed the garage to ask them not to throw the caliper etc away in case it was needed and they have asked me to pay the bill and recover the costs myself even though the invoice was made out to Vulcan

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ok, have paid the garage - they have said if I want the caliper and pads I need to pay £50

would this also be recoverable from Vulcan and do I tell him that I have also paid that in the letter I am to write to him?

 

So if I don't hear from this 'legal team' within 14 days or he doesn't arrange to come and collect the car what happens then? 

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my letter reads

Quote

 

I am writing to advise that I have paid the garage for the repair to the vehicle XXX a total of £190+ vat 

 

I have also paid a further £50 for possession of the damaged caliper and brake pads whichI intend to also recover from you at the forthcoming county court action

 

yours 

 

 

is that ok? Should I include the invoices for both?

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this is the letter ready to send if ok 

 

 

Quote

 

Further to my letter of claim dated 30th November 2021, I am putting you on notice that I have also incurred additional expenses:

Expense one - £190+ vat  you are meant to explain what these expenses are

Expense two - £46+vat

 

I was obliged to incur these expenses because it is necessary for me to keep the car on the road and I did not want to keep the car in an unlawful condition thereby vitiating any insurance cover.

 

These expenses were necessarily incurred because of your uncooperative approach and the fact that you seem happy to have sold me a vehicle despite the fact that this is an offence under the Road Traffic Act as well as being in breach of your obligations under the Consumer Rights Act.

 

I shall be addressed  adding these expenses to the county court claim which I shall be bringing against you. Also, I may add the cost of insuring the vehicle while your refuse to honour your obligations.

 

In my recent letter I gave you a 14 day deadline and I am pointing out that the clock is still running and at the end of the 14 days I shall be issuing proceedings against you.

 

Yours sincerely

 

 

I will do the money claim online now - should I say that he offered me half ?

 

Edited by BankFodder
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Hi 

Letter was amended and sent recorded delivery on Saturday

I have also stopped using the car and emptied it out waiting for him to collect...

 

Is this explanation ok to put on the Money Claim?

Quote

I purchased a motor vehicle on 17th November which had received an MOT the day of purchase however, 6 days later on 23rd November after hearing an awful noise coming from the rear wheel and advising the dealer, he asked me to have the vehicle recovered to my local garage for diagnostics. 
The garage advised the following day that the rear caliper and brake pads had to be replaced as the caliper had completely seized solid and there were no brake pads left. I advised the dealer of this and was offered half of the cost toward the repair as a gesture of goodwill. I refused and requested to return the car to him for a full refund as he has sold me a vehicle in an unroadworthy condition and by the condition of the brake pads, it would appear the MOT either not correct or false. The dealer has now refused contact with me stating his legal team will be in contact.  

 

Edited by Fringer
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I have had a response from the legal team

 

Quote

We write to you on behalf of the above-named client in response to your letter dated 30 November, 1 and 4 December 2021.

First, we note on 17 November 2021 you purchased a Honda FRV registration number XXX for the price of £3,500.

At the time of sale the vehicle was over 14 years old and had an odometer reading of approximately 99,488 miles.

Patently the vehicle was well used and part worn at the time of sale and the issue of satisfactory quality must be viewed in such context.

We understand that on 25 November 2021, over 1 week and 366 miles after sale, you had the vehicle inspected at a local garage who advised that the brake calliper was seized.

You proceeded to have this item repaired at a cost of £283.20. As a result of the above, you now seek to reject the vehicle and receive a full refund of the purchase price, in addition to the repair cost incurred.

To be entitled to reject the vehicle in accordance with the provisions of the Consumer Rights Act 2015, the onus is on you to prove the vehicle is faulty.

As you have had the vehicle repaired and the vehicle remains fault free, you can no longer seek to reject the vehicle and receive a full refund.

As regards the cost of repairs, it is not accepted that our client has any liability to reimburse any repair costs.

Our client avers that the vehicle was fault free, of satisfactory quality and fit for purpose at the time of sale, as required. The vehicle passed an independent MOT on 17 November 2021 with no advisories and the vehicle was deemed roadworthy as a result.

Further, the vehicle passed a pre-delivery inspection without issue or incident, as required. Moreover, if the vehicle’s brake calliper was seized at the time of sale, it would not have been possible for you to cover some 366 miles before experiencing an issue. We are also in receipt of text messages sent to our client which confirm that on 17 November 2021 at 19:47, you confirmed that you arrived home safely and that the car drove lovely.

Evidently the vehicle has merely suffered an issue post-sale, which our client cannot be held liable for.

We refer you to Section 23(6) of the Consumer Rights Act 2015, which entitles our client to the right to a reasonable opportunity to carry out a repair themselves.

You did not provide our client with any opportunity to inspect or repair the goods themselves.

On 23 November 2021 our client specifically requested you to call them once a diagnosis had been carried out.

You ignored this request and proceeded to repair the vehicle with the expectation of our client to cover the cost.

Our client is not obliged to cover any third-party repair costs carried out without their knowledge of or consent.

Our client further avers that you have failed to mitigate your loss.

Our client would have been able to carry out the same repair at a significantly cheaper trade cost. Nowithstanding the above, as a gesture of goodwill only and not as an acceptance of liability, our client previously offered to contribute 50% towards the repair costs, which you declined.

To be clear, this offer now stands withdrawn.

For the aforementioned reasons, our client will not be accepting your rejection of the vehicle, nor will they be covering the cost of any repairs.

 

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