The most common used car and bike buying scam

As criminals often tend to double their bad efforts at this time of year, there may be an extra spanner in the works for the new and innocent customer. It is always good to be on guard when purchasing a used car or bike and to double check all documents etc., it is doubly important at the end of year when scams are at their highest. These shady agents will do anything to get stock out the door.


The used car salesman gets a bad name in the press at times and it certainly doesn’t apply to all used car salesmen. The villains in the business unfortunately have cast a shade on all whether right or wrong. One of the best-known cons in the car and bike sales business is called clocking. This is when the odometer or mileage display system has been tampered with. Because low-mileage vehicles are worth far more money than high-mileage ones, the salesman will lower the mileage shown for greater profit. One way to make sure that the clock has not been tampered with is to check for evidence of the dashboard being unscrewed. Also, it is a good idea to make sure that the general wear and tear on the vehicle matches the shown mileage.


Cut and shut is the commonly known slang words for buying the halves of two cars which have been welded into one. A lot of would be buyers would not know what to look out for in this instance. These vehicles are a result of two half written off cars being patched together to make one deadly vehicle. If a car has been rear-ended, then the front of that car will be used as the good half and in the same way if a car has had a serious front-end crash then the back of that car will be used. These two halves get welded together. This type of vehicle is highly dangerous to drive as it will come apart at the slightest impact. Mismatched paint is the best way for checking this terrible scam.


In most cases when a car or bike has been stolen the thief will try very hard to give it a new identity to be able to sell it again. Giving the stolen vehicle the identity of a written off one is a very common trick. To avoid this the engine number and the chassis number should be matched against the registration.


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Photo Credit: Peugeot

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