Bought far from perfect Elise-the law? - Ian D
A friend of mine has bought a Lotus Elise (about 4 years old) from a sports car specialist, the car came with one of those one page RAC reports (not a full car buying survey) stating no problrems, and all was well for 2 months and 600 miles, then one of the front tyres was wearing unevenly on the outer edge, she took it ot the local Lotus main dealer who checked it over and road tested it and said the handling was very poor, all four shock absoebers needed replacing as well as the goemetry resetting and 2 tyres replacing. On being informed, the specialist dealer says it is not his problem , the warranty company says it is not covered as ii is wear and tear.

Can someone please remind me of her legal rights against the supplying specialist dealer, I have done a forum search but could not find the threads I sort of remembered where it is up to him to prove the car was ok prior to sale...

Bought far from perfect Elise-the law? - Thommo
Six month implied warranty.

Get specialist report from main dealer plus estimate of cost to repair.

Ask specialist dealer to pay within 30 days.

Sue in small claims court.

Discussed many times on this site.
Bought far from perfect Elise-the law? - DavidHM
Sorry Thommo, it's not as clear cut as that.

There is no six-month implied warranty. What there is, and what sometimes amounts to the same thing, is that there is a reverse burden of proof so that the seller has to point to evidence that the goods were okay at the time of sale when a fault develops in the first six months, rather than the buyer having to prove that they were initially faulty.

However in this case, the dealer has the clean, "independent" report.

Therefore the buyer has to fall back on the general SoGA rights - namely that the vehicle was not of satisfactory quality. When such far-reaching suspension work is needed then there is an argument that if the suspension was just barely acceptable at the time of purchase, but it is no longer so, the car was not of satisfactory quality despite nothing actually being defective at the time. However that is likely to be a question of fact, not of law, and one which the Court may decide having regard to the nature of the transaction, the relative strengths of the parties and even the price paid.
Bought far from perfect Elise-the law? - Bill Payer
..and I would imagine that whether the shockers need replacing is very much a matter of opinion.
Bought far from perfect Elise-the law? - Dalglish
.. Can someone please remind me of her legal rights against the supplying specialist dealer


see honestjohn's soga 2002 amendments listed at

and faq no.2

2. How do I reject a duff car or get compensation for problems with a car I have bought from a dealer?

during the first six months:

the consumer returns the goods in the first six months from the date of sale and requests a repair or replacement or a partial refund. In that case, the consumer does not have to prove the goods were faulty at the time of sale. It is assumed that they were. If the retailer does not agree, it is for the retailer to prove that the goods were satisfactory at the time of sale. This comes from Sale and Supply of Goods to Consumers Regulations 2002, derived from EU Directive 1999/44/EU which became Clauses 48A to 48F inclusive of the Sale of Goods act in April 2003

after the first six months:

Under sale of goods legislation (Sale of Goods Act 1979, Sale and Supply of Goods Act 1994) consumers are entitled to expect that any goods they buy are of satisfactory quality. That is, that the goods meet the standard that a reasonable person would regard as satisfactory taking into account the way they are described, their price, and any other relevant circumstances, such as the fact that they are second-hand or used. ... ..

If a product that was not of satisfactory quality at the time of the sale is returned to the retailer, the buyer is entitled to a full refund (if it is within a reasonable time of the sale), or, if a ?reasonable time ? has elapsed, to a reasonable amount of compensation. The consumer needs to demonstrate the goods were not of satisfactory quality at the time of sale. This is so if the consumer chooses to request an immediate refund or compensation. It is also the case for any product returned more than six months after the date of sale.

If the amount is less than £5,000 and qualifies for the Small Claims Court then any decision made does not become case law.

However, if it goes to the County Court, then a decision does become case law. County Court rulings can be overruled by Appeal Court rulings which then become case law. And cases will be argued on the facts. So though the Sale and Supply of Goods Act may appear to give you rights, your true rights are governed by case law and asserting them can be very expensive.

Bought far from perfect Elise-the law? - bell boy
it wants four shockers?says a shocker dealer
it wants tracking........can happen to any car as soon as you drive over a bad pothole
it needs two front tyres..........probably as a result of the tracking being out.

i would have an independant garage check the shockers and if they are indeed all shot then i would ask original vendor with my evidence to change them

tyres and tracking i would live with and get down and get under next time i bought a s/h car especially a fast one that was probably on just legal expensive tyres at p.o.s.
Bought far from perfect Elise-the law? - Thommo
I know David.

Also without piling on anyone who buys a used Elise without a FULL inspection is a damned fool. They are essentially track day tools you can'tt live with them. Hell I'm 6'2" and I can barely get in to one. They are not every day cars.

Looks to me like the 'specialist' picked up a knackered track day tool cheap and then shipped it on to an unsuspecting wide eyed ingénue who 'thought it looked cute'. This is actually what this law was set up to stop.

Looks like a fair case to me and small claims courts usually sniffs out these guys as they usually settle up before having to explain to the beak how with all their 'specialist' expertise they missed all these faults.
Bought far from perfect Elise-the law? - T Lucas
Shockers,unless they are leaking is a matter of opinion,and can she prove she has not kerbed it in 600 miles.Thought not.
Bought far from perfect Elise-the law? - Lud
Shockers,unless they are leaking is a matter of opinion,and can she
prove she has not kerbed it in 600 miles.Thought not.

TL, yours is the second post to that effect.

Shot shock absorbers are not a matter of opinion. If you know how the car ought to drive, or even if you don't, a fast bumpy bend will tell you whether the dampers are working as they should. My daughter's Golf, a sweet example of its kind despite the treatment she gives it, originally came with shot back dampers. The rear would skip out a few inches on bumpy bends, not too frighteningly in dry weather but I worried about them overdoing it in the wet one day. Whenever the car went to the independent VW specialist who maintains it, I would mention this in a mantra. But no one changes them until they actually leak, or the rubber bushes break up or something of the sort.

Eventually this happened and they were changed, long after they should have been. The difference at the wheel is very obvious to me, but I'm afraid my wife and daughter haven't noticed.
Bought far from perfect Elise-the law? - No FM2R
DavidHM gives the law.

However, I'd say that Oldman gives the right way forward...

Bite on the tyres and tracking because that is wear and tear and unless she has whacked a kerb herself I would expect that the uneven wear should have already been showing as well as the general state of the tyres. If the wear was not showing 600 miles ago, then I suspect that she has indeed clumped a kerb or similar.

Get written confirmation that the shocks need changing and go and visit the supplying dealer with a strop on.

In both cases, as Oldman also said, do get the current verdict verified elsewhere, just to be sure.
Bought far from perfect Elise-the law? - Red Baron
Are all four tyres of the same brand? Even if they are, then someone may, 600 miles ago, have put on a set of new/nearly new/used to disguise the fact that the wheel alignment was out. So the current owner of the car may indeed not have kerbed them at all.
Bought far from perfect Elise-the law? - bell boy
and of course swapped the battery, wiper blades and the radio.........
Bought far from perfect Elise-the law? - Ian D
Thanks for the replies, the supplying dealer has offered to buy 2 new tyres and pay for the alignment. A colleague (a Lotus nut) has offered to fit 4 shocks if she buys the parts, so this is probably a reasonable compromise....
Bought far from perfect Elise-the law? - bell boy
yes happiness all round i think and everyone saves face.............good result.........

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