Legal rights after buying faulty used car

Hi HJ & Team.

A question regarding our legal rights. We bought, approximately a month ago, a 2006 Ford Fusion 1.4TDCi Zetec with about 70k miles on the clock. We paid approximately £2,200 less a £500 trade in from an old Renault Megane 1.9dCi which was giving us some electrical grief.

Fast forward to today and we have taken the car into a local mechanic after an extremely odd rushing air noise when accelerating. They very kindly put the car on a ramp for us and showed us the underside of the car, showing a loose bolt where the EGR valve is connected to the engine which might explain the air rushing noise. More of concern is the underside of the car is caked with relatively fresh, dry oil (mixed with dirt etc). The mechanic so far has suggested either this is a problem with a sump or the oil is coming from the "big end" of the engine (I believe related to the connection between piston and crankshaft though please feel free to educate me otherwise). The mechanic has suggested we contact the original seller as, if there is a fault with the big end, it may well make the car completely uneconomical to repair.

In this case, what are our rights should the seller, an independent dealer, prove difficult to work with? How would you go about dealing with this as we feel the car has been sold unfit for purpose.

Asked on 28 December 2015 by Kieran1602

Answered by Honest John
The oil cannot be coming from the 'big end' because, as you rightly state, that is where the piston con rods connect to the crankshaft inside the engine. It could be coming from a leaking sump gasket, or a leaking crankshaft end seal, or from another gasket of seal. Your rights are outlined here:
Dear Honest John,

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