Why did a dealer want me to wait three months to register an ex-demo car in my name?

A month ago I agreed to buy an ex demonstrator Fiat Spider 124. After I paid my deposit, the salesman called to tell me that he couldn't put the car into my name for three months. I didn't really understand why but I was concerned about the implications on my insurance of driving a car that wasn't registered to me. I pulled out and they refunded my deposit. In panic (because I needed a new car quickly), I bought a pre-registered Hyundai i20 very cheaply - which is alright, but not what I wanted. I now have money left to buy a classic convertible with and I will be less worried leaving the Hyundai at the station while I'm at work, but I still mourn for the Fiat. Did I act too quickly in pulling out of the sale?

Asked on 30 July 2017 by Paul Stopford

Answered by Honest John
The basis of the deal on the Fiat Spider was that it was registered as the dealer demonstrator and had to remain registered as the dealer demonstrator for another three months to qualify for whatever preferential price the dealer had bought it for. You would have had to legitimise the proposed deal with your insurer (no different from leasing a car) and would have had the worry that any ANPR tickets would have gone to the dealer as registered keeper and might not have been passed on to you as the 'driver' until additional penalties were incurred.

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