The reader needed the vehicle for a regular commute but now thinks he was mis sold a car. He says he told the dealer he needed to do a 140-mile each-way trip to work. In addition, he didn’t want to charge the vehicle to manage those 140 miles. The sales exec assured him the car would do at least 200 miles between charges. The reader went ahead and bought the car because of what the sales exec told him.
The first time he used it, he found that he had to recharge on his way to work. He now wants to reject the car because he thinks he was missold it. He believes it isn’t fit for the purpose he bought it for.
When he called the dealership to reject it, it told him the car would achieve the range the sales exec spoke of if he didn’t run the heating or radio and travelled at a lower speed.
The buyer followed that advice and managed 140 miles between charges but claims that he had to wear multiple layers of clothing to stay warm. In addition, he found the journey boring because he couldn’t make the most of the car’s features.
What is mis selling?
This is when you tell a sales person you want a product to fulfil a certain purpose and they sell you one that doesn’t do that. That sales person is essentially misleading you by giving you incorrect information. In other words, they are selling you a product that isn’t fit for purpose.
In car terms, an example might be you tell a dealer that you need a car for towing a caravan and they sell you one that you can’t fit a tow bar to. Or you say you need an EV that does at least 140 miles between charges and they sell you one that doesn’t do that.
What the answer was
The reader wanted to reject the car but the dealership wasn’t having it because the car could technically do the 140 miles without charging. The dealership also claimed that the buyer should have conducted his own research into the car before buying it.
The buyer contacted The Motor Ombudsman (TMO) to arbitrate in this case. This independent body investigated the details and decided that the reader could reject the car.
Why you can reject goods after mis selling
According to TMO, car dealers have a duty to assist buyers in getting as much information as possible about products during the buying process. They should give buyers sufficient information to make an informed decision. And the information they give to buyers should be accurate.
TMO concluded that the vehicle our bought reader wasn’t up to the job that he said he wanted it for. It added that the reader was entitled to reject the vehicle because the dealer misdescribed it to him.
It stated the dealer should give the buyer a refund for rejecting the vehicle, less a small amount for the usage he’d had from the vehicle.
I’ve been writing about cars and motoring for more than 25 years. My career started on a long-departed classic car weekly magazine called AutoClassic. I’ve since pitched up at Autosport, Auto Express, the News of the World, Sunday Times and most recently the Daily Telegraph. When I’m not writing about cars and motoring, I’m probably doing some kind of sport or working in my garden.