Andrew Barry had a very lucky escape. Having decided to sell his Skoda Octavia ('brilliant car'), he decided that he’d quite fancy the Audi A3 Sportback. So after a couple of hours browsing the online classifieds, he thought he'd found the perfect car and called the (reputable?) dealership to arrange a test drive.
The first thing Andrew found out was that the car was a second-hand import from the UK, but that didn't worry him too much as the price was good and it looked like the car had a great specification.
He asked the dealer about the Vehicle Registration Tax (VRT) on the car and was told that this had been fully paid but when he asked about the V5 certifiicate (UK version of the logbook) for the car, he was told it had been sent off with the payment for the VRT and wasn't available but that the car had a full, up-to-date service history.
Undaunted, Andrew took the car for a test drive. He was so impressed that he agreed to buy it and placed a €150 deposit on the car to secure it.
Motorcheck Report Reveals True Identity
Just before completing his purchase, Andrew used Motorcheck.ie to check out the car and the results were startling. The UK registration that was on the car when he drove it and still visible on the online ad didn't match the A3 that he had put a deposit on. It had a completely different specification, a power output of 138hp that was very different to the 105hp car he had viewed.
Knowing that there's no such thing as a silly question, Andrew went back to the dealer and asked about the logbook and service history records. He was told that they were in a separate lock-up for safe keeping and weren't immediately available for his examination.
Sensibly, Andrew took a note of the chassis number on the windscreen on the car and noted the cars' UK registration, which turned out to be different to the chassis number confirmed by Motorcheck.ie.
Another check revealed that the UK registration corresponded to a completely different Audi A3 and the chassis number on the car he was looking at was one that has never been officially imported. Something was definitely amiss!
Needless to say Andrew cancelled the sale and saved himself not only losing the car he was due to trade-in, but the car he was set to buy too. This truly shows that doing your homework and research could save you thousands of Euro and acres of trouble.
Luckily Andrew has since bought himself an Audi from Audi North Dublin and is more than happy with it.
Best of luck with the new car Andrew!