Landrover Freelander - Consumer Rights Act 2015 - Susan Kendrick

In October last year I bought a 6 year old Landrover Freelander from a registered car dealer for £15,600. The car was serviced, MOT'd and had a 6 month basic warranty. 29 days later the car broke down on the motorway. From the AA van I called the dealer and asked if I shold get it revovered to him and he told me I could take it to any garge, so I had it recovered to a Jaguar / Landrover specialist that I have used previously. After much diagnostic work and repairs including a new fuel pump, new ECU and fuel injectors, all costing me over £3,400 the car was back on the road. Twice we offered to give the car back to the dealer for him to look at and repair and twice he refused, saying that my garage had caused the fault. The warranty company refused to pay out as they initially said they would contribute @ £400 towards the fuel pump, but retracted this and said renewing the pump did not fix the fault so they would cancel my claim. They refuse to pay the repairs and I am proceeding the claim through what most know as the small claims court. I claim the vehicle was not of satisfactory quality, not as advertised (he said it had one owner when in fact it had two) or fit for purpose in that it broke down needing extensive repairs. I feel sure that I can take this to the court myself without getting expensive legal advice that I can ill afford but would welcome any help or advice you can offer.

For instance, the first line of the dealers Particulars of defene is as follow.

"This defece is served without prejudice to the defendants contention that the claim should be struck out as being insufficiently particularised and disclosing no reasonable course of action against the defendant. In particular stylised particulars do not constitute compliance witht the relevant positions of the Civil Procedure Rule"

What does that mean??

Id be grateful for any help. Many thanks for reading.

Landrover Freelander - Consumer Rights Act 2015 - Brit_in_Germany

Have you read this pamphlet?

www.judiciary.gov.uk/wp-content/uploads/JCO/Docume...f

Landrover Freelander - Consumer Rights Act 2015 - Cris_on_the_gas

You have not actually stated what you are claiming for.

From what you state above you have not made clear what you are claiming for. My understanding is:

1. £3400 for repairs to vehicle that the dealer did not want to fix and it would have been reasonable to assume the fault was present at point of sale.

2. The difference in sale price of a car with 2 previous owners rather than one. Not sure how you value this one.

Landrover Freelander - Consumer Rights Act 2015 - RobJP

I wouldn't be surprised if the sale advert actually said 'one PREVIOUS owner' - which can legally mean one owner PRIOR to the one currently on the logbook - so it's had 2 owners.

If that's the case, then you haven't got a leg to stand on with that side of things. Even if you did, for a 6 year old vehicle it would amount to buttons - £100 or so - for having 2 prior keepers rather than one.

By the reading of the respondent's letter, they're stating that you've left it rather 'woolly', which is meant by 'insufficiently particularised', 'no reasonable course of action against the defendant', and 'stylised particulars'. In other words, cut the flowery rhetoric, and stick to plain facts Some thing like :

That the defendant did provide a vehicle that was not fit for purpose, that the defendant is liable for the cost incurred in repairing that vehicle to make it fit for purpose, and that the sum involved is £XXX.

The warranty company is irrelevant - the selling garage is entirely liable for failures within the first six months.

Landrover Freelander - Consumer Rights Act 2015 - SLO76
I'd strongly advise seeking legal advice, at least speak to Citizens advice or your local trading standards to see if they might take the case on. Even a visit from the TSO's is often enough to provoke a favourable response.

This is a fine example of why you must return any faulty vehicle to the supplying dealer for them to arrange repairs. No matter what they tell you DO NOT hand it over to a third party then expect the dealer or warranty company to pay up for some grossly inflated repair bill another (possibly incompetent or dishonest though I make no accusation in this particular case) garage has presented you with.

The warranty firm must first authorise repairs after the dealer has called or submitted a claim along with a report on what is wrong. If you don't get prior authority beforehand then they won't pay out and I'm not sure they can be legally held for the huge cost of this repair as I believe it to be hugely disproportionate to what was likely wrong with the car though again I can't be sure. The terms for authorising work should be in the small print in your warranty documents.

Did you tell the repairing workshop to retain all the parts they replaced so they could be checked if the claim was disputed? If not then there's no proof the faults and expensive work they did on the car was actually necessary. Did they inform you that the warranty firm or supplying dealer would expect and require prior authorisation before work was carried out? If they didn't then they were either in the dark about the case or negligent in not telling you.

I'm curious how such a large bill was generated. Did they use the correct up to date diagnostic equipment to read the fault codes or have they simply replaced one bit then another until they cured it. It's not that uncommon in these to see cases of misfueling killing the high pressure fuel pump and injectors so perhaps someone prior to you has put petrol in it but there should have been no need to replace the ECU if this was the case.

What happened during the actual breakdown? Did the car just stop dead or was there any unusual noises beforehand? Ask them for the fault codes they found. It might be the case they haven't correctly diagnosed the fault and went on a merry quest to run up a big bill.

Sadly, I fear this won't be the end to your woes. Although the Freelander II is a much better car than its predecessor it is still well known for going wrong with a long long list of common faults. It's not a car I'd buy, especially when buying 6-7yrs old. A petrol Honda CRV or Toyota RAV4 would fill the role better.

Edited by SLO76 on 08/02/2017 at 14:52

Landrover Freelander - Consumer Rights Act 2015 - TedCrilly

You need to book 30 mins with a solicitor clued up in this area and have a cosy chat. Take all the bills and documentation with you and most importantly answer all the questions put to you honestly and accurately.

You might be in with a chance of something, you might not but one thing is for certain.....you need professional help.

Edited by TedCrilly on 08/02/2017 at 16:57

Landrover Freelander - Consumer Rights Act 2015 - TedCrilly

"The selling garage is entirely liable for failures within the first six months."

Not strictly true, the garage is responsible for faults present at the time of sale, not faults that develop after sale, even then considerations will be made for age/condition/cost.

Are you really saying that every vehicle sold via a trader comes with what is essentially a 6 month no quibble guarantee against all faults regardless of the vehicles cost, age and condition?

If I was to buy a 12 yr old £750 PX with 130k on the clock and no service history and 5 months later it dropped a valve. Would you expect recompense from the seller and for the courts to back me?

Dream on!!

Landrover Freelander - Consumer Rights Act 2015 - RT

"The selling garage is entirely liable for failures within the first six months."

Not strictly true, the garage is responsible for faults present at the time of sale, not faults that develop after sale, even then considerations will be made for age/condition/cost.

Are you really saying that every vehicle sold via a trader comes with what is essentially a 6 month no quibble guarantee against all faults regardless of the vehicles cost, age and condition?

If I was to buy a 12 yr old £750 PX with 130k on the clock and no service history and 5 months later it dropped a valve. Would you expect recompense from the seller and for the courts to back me?

Dream on!!

In simplistic terms, in the first 6 months the dealer has to prove the fault WASN'T present at point of sale, after 6 months the buyer has to prove the fault WAS present at point of sale.

If the fault can't be proved, whoever by, to have been present at point of sale then a subsequently developing fault has to be considered against the age, mileage and price of the vehicle.

Landrover Freelander - Consumer Rights Act 2015 - pd

"The selling garage is entirely liable for failures within the first six months."

Not strictly true, the garage is responsible for faults present at the time of sale, not faults that develop after sale, even then considerations will be made for age/condition/cost.

Are you really saying that every vehicle sold via a trader comes with what is essentially a 6 month no quibble guarantee against all faults regardless of the vehicles cost, age and condition?

If I was to buy a 12 yr old £750 PX with 130k on the clock and no service history and 5 months later it dropped a valve. Would you expect recompense from the seller and for the courts to back me?

Dream on!!

In simplistic terms, in the first 6 months the dealer has to prove the fault WASN'T present at point of sale, after 6 months the buyer has to prove the fault WAS present at point of sale.

If the fault can't be proved, whoever by, to have been present at point of sale then a subsequently developing fault has to be considered against the age, mileage and price of the vehicle.

Only if it is something which "a reasonable person would consider makes the item unsatisfactory" which, obviously, on a used car is a sliding scale on age, price and mileage as they are part or sometimes almost wholly worn out devices which are expected to need maintenance and worn out parts replaced. A seller is NOT generally responsible for bits which wear out through use and meeting the end of their natural life.

In simplistic terms, if you think you've got under comeback on the aforementioned hypothetical £750 130k car after 5 months it is b******s.

Landrover Freelander - Consumer Rights Act 2015 - SLO76
"Are you really saying that every vehicle sold via a trader comes with what is essentially a 6 month no quibble guarantee against all faults regardless of the vehicles cost, age and condition?

If I was to buy a 12 yr old £750 PX with 130k on the clock and no service history and 5 months later it dropped a valve. Would you expect recompense from the seller and for the courts to back me?"

Age, mileage and value are factors so no, a court will hardly rule in favour of you in such a case.

The problem with this case isn't however whether the dealer is liable to repair it. They are. The problem is the customer has had an unauthorised repair done by another garage who've run up a huge bill without speaking to the warranty firm or instructing the owner to speak to them. I fully understand why the dealer and warranty firm have rejected this insane bill.

I firstly doubt the need to have replaced half the parts they've billed for. It looks as if they haven't correctly diagnosed the fault and were at it, running up as much of a bill as possible. Correctly read fault codes (there must have been fault codes logged) should have directed them to any fault and they should then have made contact with the warranty firm for the go ahead first.

This to me looks like a costly reminder to people to read the terms on any insurance policy/warranty they buy, preferably before you buy it. The best that can be hoped for here is a contribution from the supplying dealer but don't expect to win the full amount back, I doubt a court would look on this without applying some blame to the customer.

On a further note, I suspect from the replacement fuel pump and injectors that this is a case of misfueling. If not by the current owner then by the previous.

Edited by SLO76 on 08/02/2017 at 20:15

Landrover Freelander - Consumer Rights Act 2015 - gordonbennet

You've covered it all SL076, the only spanners that should have been laid on this car were by the selling dealer's chosen mechanic, and it should have been returned to seller soon as it pegged out, i wouldn't have taken word of mouth authority to get it repaired elsewhere, i would have wanted written or email confirmation, the warranty (most are worthless) wasn't liable as such it was the selling dealer themself.

I agree with you about the bill to fix, it does sound like the knee jerck reaction to a misfuel, or maybe it was indeed misfuelled and run till it finally ground to a halt.

I think getting a judgement here is going to prove very difficult, if i was a dealer i wouldn't be shelling out money like that either for some figure seemingly plucked out of midair by a LR specialist, this is more than likely going to be an expensive lesson.

Edited by gordonbennet on 08/02/2017 at 21:39

Landrover Freelander - Consumer Rights Act 2015 - Avant

"From the AA van I called the dealer and asked if I shold get it recovered to him and he told me I could take it to any garage, so I had it recovered to a Jaguar / Landrover specialist that I have used previously."

Yes, I'll bet he said that - in the full knowledge that if you did go to another garage, you wouldn't be likely to succeed in a claim against him.

This may not help you, Susan, but for anyone reading this wanting general advice, it really is essential, if you have bought any faulty product from a dealer, to go back to that same dealer, with whom you had the contract in the first place.

Landrover Freelander - Consumer Rights Act 2015 - lordwoody

You could try posting here for some proper legal advice.. www.thelawforum.co.uk

Landrover Freelander - Consumer Rights Act 2015 - pd

With regard to the case, I'd agree with a lot of above.

Firstly, it sounds like the "speciliast" threw parts at it running up a silly bill. There is no way a ECU, injectors and pump all go together. Injectors and Pump maybe, but not ECU as well.

Is there anything in writing saying the seller authorised you to take it to a 3rd party? Did the owner and/or the 3rd party garage obtain permission from the selling garage to proceed with the work and the cost before they did it?

If not I have a feeling the seller will argue the specialist did not know what they were doing and they gave no approval for the work to be carried out so are not responsible.

Landrover Freelander - Consumer Rights Act 2015 - scot22

lordwoody, in the past I've recommended people on the lawforum to post here for better legal advice. Too many on the lawforum are pretending to be knowledgeable, very few qualified, and I have seen many patronising and unpleasant posts.

The only way to get 'proper' advice is by consulting a solicitor.

Landrover Freelander - Consumer Rights Act 2015 - pd

The reality is that most solicitors probably won't know much about the ins and outs of how the Consumer Rights Act works in practice with regard to used cars. Remember it is a bit of general legislation - not specific to cars at all.

There are several specialist legals firms who just do motor trade cases such as this - but as far as I am aware they all priortise working for the motor trade (i.e. the other side) than the purchaser.

It looks to me as if the seller has got specialist legal insurance to cover these sort of cases and these people tend to be pretty good as they work only with motor trade issues so be very sure of your advice before going all guns blazing.

Landrover Freelander - Consumer Rights Act 2015 - TedCrilly

Agreed, there is no substitute for professional advice.

I remember back in the day my old Dealer Principle would spend at least an hour on the phone almost everyday speaking with the various legal eagles helping him out with various issues, most of them consumer.

I wouldnt ever under estimate dealers and traders, particularly large and well established ones. They know the game better than anyone.

Edited by TedCrilly on 10/02/2017 at 13:40

 

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