Getting scammed by the car handler

36 posts in this topic

I bought my first used car of my life a couple of months ago (zero knowledge on cars and its parts), and it has been a bad experience ending with a very bad situation right now. I live in Kaiserslautern and bought my car from a dealer in Neustadt. Following events happened:

 

- Saw a decent deal on a used car (Nissan Tino - 2004) from an handler in Neustadt (40 km from Kaiserslautern). Specifically this is the dealer - https://haendler.autoscout24.de/nurten-arallara-transporte/bewertungen##melden0

- The dealer appeared very friendly. The car drove good, but when listening to the engine carefully we could hear slight rattling. It was not loud at all and we chose to ignore it (you won't pay attention if driven normally).

- We asked the dealer if there was any problem with the engine (because of the slight sound and in general). The dealer said the engine is very good no problem at all.

- The dealer offered two prices - one with guarantee for 6 months and one without guarantee (400 euros difference) - I chose to go with guarantee. I payed by cash as asked by him.- He gave buy/sell contract with 'Kaufvertrag fur ein gebrauchtes Kraftfahrzeug' with verkaufer as 'privat'. A screenshot of the contract is attached in this post. He said this is sufficient for the guarantee and just call him if anything goes wrong. I trusted him because of his friendliness. 

- Because I said that I would take the car on the next day with the documents and licence plate, he offered to 'deliver' the car by a tow truck to Kaiserslautern, as his truck is going through Kaiserslautern any ways in the afternoon. I refused and drove the car by myself next day.

- The rattling sound increased over time of one month. I finally got a 'check engine light' one morning after a jerky start.

- I called the dealer and he said he is Greece and I can bring the car back to him after two weeks. I meanwhile researched the sound and the common problems that could happen and found it could be a loose timing chain (expensive repair?).

- I went to the dealer with my car and suggested that this could be maybe because of the timing chain.

- After listening to the sound he said it indeed is timing chain issue and he will replace it. He will also do an oil change and I should pay him 50 EUR. Overjoyed by the fact that he is going to change the timing chain (which is an expensive job) I agreed to pay him 50 bucks.

- I got the car back after a week, it had the same rattling sound! Nothing improved. The dealer said that it is probably from the valve and I should come back after driving 1 thousand kms as he do not want to open the engine so soon again. He also said that he did a oil change and oil filter change. 

- I drove back the car to Kaiserslautern. On the same evening, when I started the car I got 'low oil pressure' light! I checked the dip stick, and there was enough oil in the engine.

- I called the dealer and he said said he has forgotten to 'reset the computer' after the oil change, which caused the light. I told that it is the red 'oil lamp' light and not a service warning.

- He specifically instructed me to bring the car back to him as it is a small problem in the filter or somewhere and he will fix it.  I told him that low oil pressure is a serious warning, and I don't want to drive 40 km with this warning light. He said it is not a big deal as there is oil in the car, but he will call me back. He did not call me back.

- I took the car to a local garage (werkstatt) 1 km from my place, they checked and said that there is too much oil in the engine. I saw it too, it was way above the maximum limit. They sucked some oil out till the max limit in the dipstick, but the oil pressure warning light did not go out. They asked who did the oil and filter change, and I should take the car back to them as they should bare full responsibility if something goes wrong in the engine because of their bad filter/overfilling/oil. 

- I brought the car home thinking of a way to take it to the dealer. I definitely didn't want to drive 40 kms with low oil pressure light. 

- Next morning just to check if sucking up excess oil made any difference, I started the engine, the light was still there and suddenly the engine died! It won't start again!

- Wrote my dealer that my car won't start and if it is possible for him to tow it back (knowing that he has a tow truck which he offered during buying). He said that he will try as he is in Greece (again!?). I didn't get any reply from him again.

 

Now I feel stuck in a very bad position. If the engine was seized due to the low oil pressure (which is what I think happened), the car is completely worthless now. But at the same time this happened completely because of the fault of the dealer, and whatever I did was to minimize the damage. I didn't drive it back to his place which I was clearly instructed. I also think that the rattling noise was because of the problem in the engine than any other reasons like timing chain/valve etc. Which was clearly 'hidden' from us when I bought. It is a pre-existing condition and cannot happen within 2 months of driving (less than 500 kms). I'll face the dealer in person soon, but before I do that, I want to clear up some of the questions I have.

 

- Is the contract ('Kaufvertrag fur ein gebrauchtes Kraftfahrzeug' with verkaufer as 'privat') good enough to pursue the legal 6 months guarantee?

- If so, can I pressurize the dealer to take the car back and give me back my money (with a negotiation of the usage of 2 months)? Or at least make him fix (by some other cheap engine or something), so that I can sell the car later?

- If he completely refuses to fix, what would be a good ground for me to stand. Can I get a lawyer or something?

- What would be good thing to do now in general?

 

Thanks!

 

 

 

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What do you expect from a 14-year old car?

" Im Durchschnitt wird ein Auto heutzutage 12 Jahre gefahren, bevor dieses auf dem Schrottplatz landet. Das Durchschnittsalter der Fahrzeuge, die heutzutage in Deutschland auf der Straße zu finden sind, beträgt laut dem Kraftfahrt-Bundesamt acht Jahre. Im Jahr 1995 lag das Durchschnittsalter noch bei 6,8 Jahren. "

https://www.autohof-guide.de/fahrzeug-lebensdauer.html

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14 minutes ago, AnswerToLife42 said:

What do you expect from a 14-year old car?

 

A 14 year old car with 139.000 km. If it has been regularly maintained, it should serve at least 100.000 km more...

I see lots of 20+ year old cars outside.. I believe mileage and maintenance matter more..

 

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I drive a 20 year old car with 200000km.

However, I would never exchange it for a 14-year old car with an unknown history.

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I also drive a 28 years old VW T3 (diesel) with a... well... most like 500,000km.  Runs very well, but I do baby it.  I was in the shop this morning to have summer tyres placed.  My mechanic looked over it (TüV appt next week) and he is always in awe on the condition - technically.  Does need a new paint job and it's not cheap!

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Many of my friends use old cars like 18 years and 20 years. I don't really think that is the issue. The issue is I was sold a car with a bad engine and was not told. I also additionally paid for the 'guarantee' for the first 6 months, and the handler is ignoring my calls.

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On 5/4/2018, 3:04:19, RedMidge said:

Lawyer up.

 

(Warning to others- get a mechanic to check car before buying)

Any tips of getting a lawyer? Any link/directions that I can get myself started?

Or at least have a ground before I meet him?

 

Thanks,
Kripa

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On 5/4/2018, 3:47:48, AnswerToLife42 said:

I drive a 20 year old car with 200000km.

However, I would never exchange it for a 14-year old car with an unknown history.

 

Correct, of course there are cars out there with a high mileage, but they are been taking care of.  One of our cars is a T4 with over 300K km, but we do maintain it properly.

 

When you buy a car with high mileage without a full history and without checking it properly you are basically buying a lottery ticket.  

 

Some people simply never maintain their cars and they sell them when they start to give problems.   

 

A 1700 EUR car that the salesman was willing to sell for 1300 EUR without any guarantee smells like problems.

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Nobody would give a garantee for such a cheap/old car.

Should there be a problem with the gearbox 5 month after the sale, the vendor possibly would have to fork out 3000€.

The shops that did that in the past are surely all bankrupt now.

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49 minutes ago, krips said:

Many of my friends use old cars like 18 years and 20 years. I don't really think that is the issue. The issue is I was sold a car with a bad engine and was not told. I also additionally paid for the 'guarantee' for the first 6 months, and the handler is ignoring my calls.

 

I don't find any reference to a guarantee in the contract you've signed. It seems to me you haggled the price up by €400 and that you'll never get your money back. Or are you ready to pay the lawyer fees and go to the last mile with this guy? He's not likely to comply right away with whatever demand your lawer makes in his first letter.

 

Over-friendly used car sellers are friendly mostly because they really want your money, and when buying (very) cheap you get what you pay for.

 

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1 hour ago, AnswerToLife42 said:

Nobody would give a garantee for such a cheap/old car.

Should there be a problem with the gearbox 5 month after the sale, the vendor possibly would have to fork out 3000€.

The shops that did that in the past are surely all bankrupt now.

 

Any dealer must give a 1 year guarantee for such a car. The fault must have been there at the time of sale. If a fault occurs within the first 6 months it is assumed that it was already there, after the first 6 months the buyer has to prove that it was there at the time of sale - so in reality the guarantee is 6 months. Dealers/Companies cannot avoid this guarantee.

If the car cost 1750 and the gearbox costs 3000 the dealer would, at most, just give you back the 1750, he's not going to repair at a greater cost than the cost of the car.

 

The problem I see here is that the contract seems to be a private sale, not from a dealer.

 

At this point it's very tricky: How was it advertised? Did he buy it himself as a private person or did his company buy it before selling it to you? Does he do this regularly? (in that case it might be considered a business anyway) etc. etc.

 

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Only private persons can sell a car without garantee.

That's why dealers only sell old cars "im Kundenauftrag", meaning you buy the car from the previous owner.

No reputable dealer will sell old cars. Too risky.

 

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2 minutes ago, AnswerToLife42 said:

Only private persons can sell a car without garantee.

 

 

Warranty, not guarantee. Guarantees are always voluntary, warranties are not. 

 

Clearly the op was scammed here. But he made it easy for the scammer, not reading/understanding what he signed.

 

On 4.5.2018, 12:23:56, krips said:

I bought my first used car of my life a couple of months ago (zero knowledge on cars and its parts), and it has been a bad experience ending with a very bad situation right now. I live in Kaiserslautern and bought my car from a dealer in Neustadt. Following events happened:

 

- Saw a decent deal on a used car (Nissan Tino - 2004) from an handler in Neustadt (40 km from Kaiserslautern). Specifically this is the dealer - https://haendler.autoscout24.de/nurten-arallara-transporte/bewertungen##melden0

 

The seller named on the contract is a different person. Presumably the last owner (as ATL42 suggests). 

 

On 4.5.2018, 12:23:56, krips said:

- Is the contract ('Kaufvertrag fur ein gebrauchtes Kraftfahrzeug' with verkaufer as 'privat') good enough to pursue the legal 6 months guarantee?

 

No, sorry. The contract is completely useless – it's a private contract with a different person than the dealer and it's   without any warranty. 

 

On 4.5.2018, 12:23:56, krips said:

- If so, can I pressurize the dealer to take the car back and give me back my money (with a negotiation of the usage of 2 months)? Or at least make him fix (by some other cheap engine or something), so that I can sell the car later?

 

No, no.

 

On 4.5.2018, 12:23:56, krips said:

- If he completely refuses to fix, what would be a good ground for me to stand. Can I get a lawyer or something?

 

Pay it off as 'Lehrgeld'/instructive money. Paying for a lawyer will only add costs. Next time take someone with you with knowledge about cars and better reading abilities. Don't sign contracts you don't understand. 

 

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19 minutes ago, msam said:

 

Any dealer must give a 1 year guarantee for such a car. The fault must have been there at the time of sale. If a fault occurs within the first 6 months it is assumed that it was already there, after the first 6 months the buyer has to prove that it was there at the time of sale - so in reality the guarantee is 6 months. Dealers/Companies cannot avoid this guarantee.

If the car cost 1750 and the gearbox costs 3000 the dealer would, at most, just give you back the 1750, he's not going to repair at a greater cost than the cost of the car.

 

The problem I see here is that the contract seems to be a private sale, not from a dealer.

 

At this point it's very tricky: How was it advertised? Did he buy it himself as a private person or did his company buy it before selling it to you? Does he do this regularly? (in that case it might be considered a business anyway) etc. etc.

 

I am also concerned about the contract itself. It has the verkaufer as 'privat'. I wonder if the contract looks different when you buy from a dealer, and if so, how does it look like.

 

The car was advertised in autoscout24. I don't have much knowledge on the process he went before selling me the car. But he definitely has a page in autoscout24 (https://haendler.autoscout24.de/nurten-arallara-transporte/), a small office, and a decent sized garage. 

 

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5 minutes ago, krips said:

I am also concerned about the contract itself. It has the verkaufer as 'privat'. I wonder if the contract looks different when you buy from a dealer, and if so, how does it look like.

 

The car was advertised in autoscout24. I don't have much knowledge on the process he went before selling me the car. But he definitely has a page in autoscout24 (https://haendler.autoscout24.de/nurten-arallara-transporte/), a small office, and a decent sized garage. 

 

 

According to your contract you didn't buy from Nurten Aral but from that greek guy, Arnastiakis Emma??? or whatever his name is, living is Haßloch, not Neustadt (zip code 67454). 

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15 minutes ago, AnswerToLife42 said:

Only private persons can sell a car without garantee.

That's why dealers only sell old cars "im Kundenauftrag", meaning you buy the car from the previous owner.

No reputable dealer will sell old cars. Too risky.

 

My contract does not show "im Kundenauftrag", but has verkaufer as 'privat'. I'm not sure if it means that I'm buying the car from him privately. In that case how does a contract look like if bought from a dealer?

 

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8 minutes ago, krips said:

My contract does not show "im Kundenauftrag", but has verkaufer as 'privat'. I'm not sure if it means that I'm buying the car from him privately.

 

 

It means exactly that. You bought the car privately from that greek guy. 

 

8 minutes ago, krips said:

 

In that case how does a contract look like if bought from a dealer?

 

 

Different. Here's an example. And another example.

 

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14 minutes ago, someonesdaughter said:

 

Warranty, not guarantee. Guarantees are always voluntary, warranties are not. 

 

Clearly the op was scammed here. But he made it easy for the scammer, not reading/understanding what he signed.

 

 

The seller named on the contract is a different person. Presumably the last owner (as ATL42 suggests). 

 

 

No, sorry. The contract is completely useless – it's a private contract with a different person than the dealer and it's   without any warranty. 

 

 

No, no.

 

 

Pay it off as 'Lehrgeld'/instructive money. Paying for a lawyer will only add costs. Next time take someone with you with knowledge about cars and better reading abilities. Don't sign contracts you don't understand. 

 

 

That would be really bad, if it ends up in this way. Nothing in Germany protects people scammed like this? I'll not mind paying a couple of 100 bucks to lawyer for a peace of mind and standing up for myself. But I have no idea how much does it costs to get any type of lawyers.

 

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