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      01-25-2013, 11:26 AM   #14
Sir_Pigley's Avatar
United Kingdom

Drives: 525d M Sport
Join Date: Sep 2009
Location: Banbury

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Mostly, but I am amazed at the ineptitude of some people.

On my initial call I asked the seller for an honest appraisal of the car's condition, wheels, door dings etc. When he was a bit vague I asked him to go outside and check. He reported back that the only mark was a small 1" kerb mark on one wheel. I asked about options and whether or not the car had the "Park Assist" automatic parallel parking option fitted - he did not know.

It was such a good price I had to act very quickly and arranged that a friend of a mate would check the car out. He said it was all good except for an almost invisible door ding on the front passenger door. It's nearly 3 years old, but only done 20k miles so it's not going to be perfect so I accepted that it would be OK. However he also reported that on the way home the wife had badly kerbed another wheel.

So I tried to negotiate a bit of a reduction for that, but it was no go with the seller as he had had 6 calls that day for people willing to come down and buy it on the spot. So I agreed to buy it

So on collecting it:
  • They only had one key ready and could not find the other. It's been promised that if/when they find it they will send it to me.
  • The minor door ding stood out like a sore thumb to me - so why the seller had not commented on it I don't know. Anyway I think it can be addressed by dentmaster or someone. It's possible that most people would consider it inconsequential; after all it is not a new car.
  • There appeared to be quite a lot of point chips on the bonnet. However on closer inspection they seem to be dark green paint spots - they can be removed, so not a problem.
  • No car instruction manual and no service stamp book - however I had checked out service history with supplying dealer and all was in order there.
  • Nearside door mirror had a scrape exposing the black plastic underneath - about the size of a 5p piece. Smart repair will deal with that.
  • Stinks inside because some idiot has used shiny dash cleaning stinky chemicals - easy to deal with though
  • Front nearside bumper coner had a minor scrape on the plastic trim insert - again a smart repair will deal with it.
  • On seeing the bad kerbing that "the wife had done on the day my mate went to inspect the car" I can now actually see on the photo used to advertise the car. So I think the seller never checked the car over to give me an honest appraisal at all - liar.
  • They had forgotten to put the rear parcel shelf in the car - something I spotted as I was about the leave.
  • Rear offside tyre was nearly flat - on checking the tyres on the way home the highest pressure in the tyres was 1.6 bar when they should all have been 2.5 bar. The bad tyre had 0.6 bar in it.

As I went to leave I could not get the iPod connection to work with the stereo so I asked the wife if she could tell me - she said "Oh that's never really worked properly and can't operate whilst the sat nav is on. The sat nav isn't very good either".
So I called in at the supplying VW dealer on the way home. There I learnt that the car did have the parallel parking assist and that the reason that the iPod connection did not work was because they had the wrong cable! (They have had the car for nearly 3 years!).

So what amazes me is that people know so little about a car that they have had for 3 years and have not been properly honest with me. I guess we are not all car enthusiasts so perhaps I expect too much. Some of the details mentioned above may convey the impression that I am being a bit pedantic - perhaps that's true.

All of the above made me a bit grumpy on collection so I may have come across as a bit rude with them, especially over the missing key. I am always a bit like this and should behave myself - I think I set out with too high expectations, thinking that a car with only 20k miles is going to be almost perfect - when that's plainly unrealistic.

On the drive home the car was quieter and more economical that our existing one and it rolled less in the corners. The iPod music and the satnav operated without a hitch and I was quite impressed with it all. So I am actually very pleased with the car.

What's more a dealer has just posted an almost identical car for sale on Autotrader and they are asking 4.5k more for it than I paid (although their car has the DSG box).

A very long winded answer to a simple question, but in essence I am happy - it's just that the experience could have been so much better if the seller had known their arse from their elbow and been properly honest with me.

I should be pleased because I have gone from car with 68.5k miles to a car with 20k miles that is almost 4 years younger and with more spec for about a 5k cost to change. That equates to pretty cheap motoring in my view.

Last edited by Sir_Pigley; 01-25-2013 at 12:09 PM.