Demos get a war­ranty

Pilbara News - - Lifestyle - Gwyn­neth Hay­wood Gwyn­neth Hay­wood is se­nior re­gional of­fi­cer at Con­sumer Pro­tec­tion.

Con­sumer Pro­tec­tion is again re­mind­ing buy­ers of demon­stra­tion ve­hi­cles they are en­ti­tled to the full term of the man­u­fac­turer’s war­ranty in terms of time, with the clock start­ing from date of pur­chase.

The war­ranty on a demon­stra­tion ve­hi­cle is only af­fected in terms of dis­tance trav­elled, with the odome­ter read­ing at the time of pur­chase al­lowed to be de­ducted.

For ex­am­ple, a five-year war­ranty is ef­fec­tive for five years from date of pur­chase.

A war­ranty of 100,000km would be­come 100,000km mi­nus, let’s say, 5000km on the odome­ter of the demo ve­hi­cle. The time as­pect is NOT up for ne­go­ti­a­tion.

Demo ve­hi­cles are of­ten an at­trac­tive al­ter­na­tive for con­sumers seek­ing a new car at a re­duced price but deal­ers should not be in­cor­po­rat­ing time re­duc­tions on the war­ranty as part of the dis­cus­sions for a cheap sale. This right is en­shrined in WA’s Mo­tor Ve­hi­cle Deal­ers Act, so it is il­le­gal for mo­tor ve­hi­cle deal­ers not to of­fer buy­ers the full time length of the war­ranty.

Like­wise for peo­ple who have bought a sec­ond-hand ve­hi­cle with the bal­ance of a new car war­ranty.

That war­ranty pe­riod should start when the ve­hi­cle was first sold to a cus­tomer, not when reg­is­tered in the dealer’s name or when it was or­dered from the man­u­fac­turer. If you are the first cus­tomer to own the car and the dealer or man­u­fac­turer claims that the war­ranty be­gan when the ve­hi­cle was reg­is­tered (usu­ally when it was de­liv­ered to the car yard) then this is mis­lead­ing and this tac­tic should be re­ported to Con­sumer Pro­tec­tion.

Also, deal­ers should not mis­lead the cus­tomer when ad­ver­tis­ing the sale of demo ve­hi­cles by sug­gest­ing that the full war­ranty is some­thing “thrown in” as a sales in­cen­tive rather than it be­ing the cus­tomer’s le­gal en­ti­tle­ment.

Of­ten con­sumers are not aware of this is­sue un­til they have to make a claim closer to the end of the war­ranty pe­riod and a dealer may say the war­ranty has run out, re­fer­ring to the reg­is­tra­tion date not the pur­chase date.

If dis­putes over war­ranties be­tween the dealer and con­sumer can’t be re­solved, con­tact Con­sumer Pro­tec­tion on 1300 30 40 54 and it will as­sist in re­solv­ing the mat­ter, which may in­volve re­mind­ing deal­ers of their obli­ga­tions un­der the law.

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