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Buyer's horror: I've got a cloned car!

2014-07-16 12:58

WHAT DO YOU MEAN IT'S CLONED? A Wheels24 reader has found himself in a predicament and found he had bought a cloned car. Image: Shutterstock

Wheels24 reader ANDRE DU PREEZ has found himself in a dilemma with a cloned car and it's costing him a fortune.

Here's what he has to say:

I bought a Toyota Hilux D4D and drove it for two months and decided to sell it due to my interest in a Ford F250.

I took the Toyota for an AA test and nothing picked up on the system. The car dealer who had bought it from me also took it for an AA test and registered it on their name. Two months later they phoned me to say it's a cloned car?


It's costing me an extra R40 000 in lawyer's fees (and counting) to sort this matter out. Is there anything I can do? The system? Can it fail twice on registering the car?

We not police to identify or look on the system to see if there is a problem, we as public are trusting the system when we register a car to tell us there is a problem. Can anybody help, please?

Wheels24 contacted the Automobile Association of South Africa but we've yet to hear back from them as the new spokesperson could not assist with a sufficient response. We then asked the former AA expert... that's Gary Ronald (retired) who said: "Normally all that is required is for the vehicle to be re-registered if its a case of duplicate registration. Usually relatively pain free. However it would need a SAPS clearance and possibly be reclassified code 2 or 3. Depends on what was cloned.

"If the dealer has already registered the vehicle and it is on Natis then there may be other issues we are not aware of. He can also try calling the spokesperson at the Department of Transport on 021 331 3000."

Rohan Apollis from Motorlease, a vehicle finance company and dealer in Cape Town, said: "It's rather difficult to give a straight answer because we're not sure if the reader had purchased the vehicle cash or if it was financed. If it was financed, he would have to go and make some noise at the bank or take it up with the dealer where he had initially bought the Hilux. There's no easy way about this as there are many variants that could come into play.

"It would be best to refer Du Preez to the consumer protection act of 2008 which promotes and protects the interest of all consumers against unfair business practices."

If the AA ever gets back to us, we'll update the report.

Has this happened to you? Have you been a cloned car victim
? Email us and we'll publish your thoughts or use the Readers' Comments section below...

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