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Fuel Card Blog Update: Unscrupulous car sellers go to new lengths

The Fuelcard Company was shocked by figures from the used car website Trusted Dealers this week that suggest dishonesty among private car sellers is even more common and costly than we could ever have dreamed.

A survey of 2,000 motorists found that one in five people admit to lying when selling cars, with money listed as the main factor behind their dishonesty.

Oh, what’s that? Why didn’t you say so? If it’s about money, that’s perfectly fine…. NOT.

Really, how far are car sellers prepared to go to get rid? Pretty far, the research suggests, as the UK plummets into a pit of dodgy dealers prepared to bend the truth, with no care for the consequences to the poor hapless buyer.

Hiding existing faults was the most common lie, with 34 per cent designed to cover up mechanical issues and ten per cent hiding a poor service history. Over a third of private sellers said they had used diversion tactics to distract a buyer from a problem with the car. Neil Addley, managing director of Trusted Dealers, said: “Although the majority of lies covered small defects, a worrying minority were trying to conceal potentially serious problems.”

With nearly 6.8 million used cars sold in 2010, the findings suggest that 1.4m used cars are being sold dishonestly each year. That’s a whopping number and one that cannot be ignored.

Trusted Dealers has put together a free handy buyers’ guide to help car hunters sidestep the most common tricks and deceptions by roguish sellers. We are not saying all private car sellers who fib are ogres, but even a white lie could be very costly in the long run.

This is one of the cases where honesty really IS the best policy.


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