Second hand car trade after March 2003 - teabelly
As the rest of the EU has had this regulation since Jan 2002 ( and the whole of the EC consumer directive too) I wonder how second hand car trading has been affected in the rest of Europe? Is this just a cynical ploy to encourage people to go out and buy brand new cars and thus prevent the European motor manufacturing trade from slipping into recession? Are cars going to become the new throwaway accessory that is seen to have a lifespan of a couple of years beyond which the reliability can't be guaranteed so they will be disposed of? I am also concerned with the increase of the sealed for life units idea. I prefer to take my car to a one man band /independent to be looked after but if older cars disappear and newer ones are only serviceable by the manufacturer then I think we are going to be had by the wotsits as franchises could charge what they liked as there would be no competition to discourage them from doing so.

I unfortunately can't see any other way to make buying a second hand car less of a minefield. Consumers don't need to know the inner workings of a television set to buy one second hand so I don't see why they should have to know the exact inner workings of cars in order to buy one and not end up with a lemon. Or am I being naive here?

Second hand car trade after March 2003 - volvoman
Just another problem with the EU I'm afraid - if we all had the right to set and maintain own own laws major, increasingly global, manufacturers would find it much harder to exert improper influence in their own self-interest.
Second hand car trade after March 2003 - teabelly
I actually think it could have a positive effect on the the general quality of second hand cars available in a few years time. Manufacturers will have to turn out cars of better quality and reliability otherwise their franchised dealers will go bust very quickly. The japanese manufacturers will have very little to fear but I suspect that Peugeot/renault will be in deep trouble as they don't have a great reputation for quality cars. Perhaps cars will actually have fewer gadgets on them (which I would heartily approve of) as manufacturers can't guarantee that they won't go wrong in couple of years. If the price of new cars starts to fall substantially then they will be going for the short term gain in just making cars to last their initial warranty period. If on the other hand car prices rise then it is likely that improvements in quality are on the way or the extra cash is an insurance policy on future failures.

If I were an honest car dealer I would be putting my prices up to cover future losses and getting rid of anything off the forecourt that's anything other than pristine. I can also see the prices for trade in cars that are not spotless will plummet so owners that abuse their cars may find they won't be able p/ex them and it would be advanatageous to dealers to offer good deals to people they know look after their vehicles.

Second hand car trade after March 2003 - zm
Don't you think that major manufacturers quietly want their franchised dealers to go bust anyway?
Look at what Mercedes did about 18 months ago to their UK dealer network, apparently in the name of 'customer service', but actually in the name of 'self service'. Why, you ask? Because with having to drop retail prices the cost price to the dealer also had to be dropped, reducing the manufacturers margins.

Simple solution; sack the dealer network, take over the outlets and slowly start putting prices up again to restore profitability and have tighter controls on retail prices (no shopping around between dealers); it all stinks.

Second hand car trade after March 2003 - bazza
Excuse my ignorance here, but what is changing in March 2003? Have I missed something big, I've largely given up on the news and papers these days, they make me depressed!:-)
Second hand car trade after March 2003 - BrianW
In a nutshell, traders must give a six month warranty on any vehicle they sell.
Second hand car trade after March 2003 - RichL
Cue another drop in the price of second hand motors, and even more dumped on the side of the road. :(
Second hand car trade after March 2003 - BMDUBYA
I remember reading an article about this on Richard Hall's superb website -

Second hand car trade after March 2003 - Andrew-T
I suppose it's just possible that people will buy fewer new cars as their old ones (still almost new) will be worth so little. Wouldn't put much money on it though.
Second hand car trade after March 2003 - BrianW
Surely what and when people buy is determined by the gap between what they can get in part exchange and the price of the new vehicle.

If p/e prices fall then new buyers will either hold off purchase or go down market until the gap becomes affordable.
Still learning (I hope)
Second hand car trade after March 2003 - Andrew-T
Baz - Read HJ's News Item on right : Trading in Older Cars .. ..
Second hand car trade after March 2003 - bazza
Thx folks

Baz (half asleep!)
Second hand car trade after March 2003 - Steve G
The biggest initial problem will be the 'trade-in' values.
Where will dealers dispose of their older p/ex's ?
Traders wont buy them (because they cant retail or trade them on),auctions will take them of course but who will buy at auction ? only leaves private buyers who probably make up 5% of the auction crowd.
Conclusion - perfectly good cars being worthless.
Its likely the only way of selling an older car for any kind of decent price will be thru private sales. Of course traders who masquerade as 'private sellers' wont be affected ,just the genuine ones trying to make a honest living.
Also many finance companies are now refusing to finance older vehicles.
Will be a interesting few months from March onwards.
Second hand car trade after March 2003 - brambob

At first sight this does look extremely worrying but I can't help feeling that there will be loopholes and workarounds that will be found.

From a buyer's point of view there may even be some opportunities. For example what about the impact on prices of higher value Prestige Cars which are the ones that are the most expensive to put right when something goes wrong. It could become possible to buy a 7/8 year old Merc/BMW for less than it is today.

Second hand car trade after March 2003 - Andrew Hamilton
Sounds great for the buyer of auction cars/vans. Still very happy with my reliable 12 year old LDV200 panel van and low cost DIY maintenance of 19 year old metro auto. Without all the fancy electronics you have long term reliability and easy fault finding at the small cost of slightly higher fuel consumption.
Second hand car trade after March 2003 - Tim Allcott
Workaround I've seen twice now (shows what sorts of car I buy) is that you buy a secondhand car 'sold as seen, for spares'. I know that's not likely to affect the top end of the secondhand trade, but might become a norm at the bottom...



Value my car