Driving a secondhand deal and avoiding scams

Checking the car boot and under bonnet can show if a car has been bodged to get it on the road

With 5.6million secondhand cars sold last year, the market is three times the size of that for new cars and dominated by private sales... although dealer sales offer better protection against payment scams.

Losing both car and money in a private sale is a key fear for many people and few payment methods are 100% secure but there are a host of other arnaques included some which dealers are blamed for.

They range from wrecks tarted up for a cheap sale; speedometers wound back; missing papers, especially the carnet d’entretien logbook, repair bills and contrôle technique; extras that are not on the car, and receiving only one set of keys.

Car sales website La Centrale found in a survey that 84% of French people thought secondhand sales were a con... and the DGCCRF consumer protection agency backed this up with checks showing one in two of cars sold by dealers had a fault ...

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