Car buyers taking risks in bid to beat recessionSurvey shows drivers are prepared to cut corners

27 March 2009

Used-car buyers are taking risks to save money

Used-car buyers are taking risks to save money

Car buyers are taking risks in a bid to save cash during the recession, a new survey has revealed.

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More than a quarter of drivers would be willing to buy a used car from an unknown seller, the poll for found.

And as many as 10% of those questioned said they would be prepared to buy a car without a full service history if the price was right.

Confusion over used cars

A further 2% of the 1,642 drivers polled said they would even pay over the phone for a vehicle they hadn’t seen if they thought it would save them cash.

The survey also revealed that 60% of drivers don’t know how to check that a car is safe and legal, and that the majority of drivers are confused about logbooks, vehicle identification numbers and mileage checks.

An estimated 160,000 cars are stolen in England and Wales every year, with around 19,000 later offered for sale.

Illegal cars

Katie Armitage from said: ‘There are around seven million used cars bought and sold every year at an average cost of £5000. If your new car is found to be illegal you lose this money outright without hope of redress.’

To protect yourself from dodgy private sellers, make sure you read the Which? guide to buying a used car. And, if you do end up with a troublesome car, Which? has expert advice on your rights.


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