Auto dealers put on notice by ACCC in warranty crackdown

Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC)

Dodgy new car retailers who misguide consumers about guarantees, warranties and fuel usage promises have been put on notice by Australia’s competition watchdog.

Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) discovered lots of makers have failed to ensure that standard customer guarantee rights are factored into their complaints managing systems and that some new buyers are losing out to dubious practices.

The ACCC stated complaints regarding new car manufacturers and retailers have risen to over 10,000 during the last 2 years, highlighting extensive customer problems in the industry.

ACCC chairman Rod Sims informed the ABC’s AM program that producers and dealers who misguide consumers about their rights for repairs, refunds and replacements will deal with more heat.

“We think consumers are getting a pretty bad deal with new automobiles, they’re not getting their customer guarantees which suggests they do not get all their rights in terms of replacements or refunds,” Mr Sims stated.

“They’ve got to comprehend that consumers do have guarantee rights.”

In one case mentioned in the report, a female buyer with transmission issues was informed by a Ford dealership she should “drive more like a man” after her efforts to have a known problem fixed.

“That’s amazing and it reflects a variety of social attitudes that’s for sure. To say that to somebody shows a reasonable bit of disdain for the client,” Mr Sims said.

Until now this year the ACCC has done something about it against a number of manufacturers consisting of Ford, Holden, Volkswagen and Audi.

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