Know Your Rights: How To Reject A Faulty New Car

how to return your new car

Buying a new car should be an enjoyable experience, but sometimes it can go wrong. It could break down or you could be regularly experiencing issues. So what are your options? Well the good news is that the rights are all on your side whether you decide to stick with it or reject the vehicle. Here are the facts and options you have when the new dream car turns into a nightmare.


Bought a Faulty Car?

If you’ve bought a car that's faulty or unfit for purpose, you are well within your rights to reject it. A vehicle should always be ‘satisfactory quality’, meaning it should be able to complete journeys without breaking down.

NOTE: The Consumer Rights Act 2015 does cover new and used cars bought from a trader (a franchised dealer or independent garage) but does not cover vehicles bought by private sale, vehicles bought at an auction or vehicles bought for business use.


What Are Your Rights When Returning A New Car?

Under the Consumer Rights Act, if the vehicle goes wrong within the first 30 days of ownership, you can simply reject it for a full refund. If a fault develops after those 30 days but within the first six months, the dealer gets one chance to fix it. If they fail to do this, you’re entitled to a full refund, or a partial refund depending on the amount of use the vehicle has had.

Although you can reject a faulty car it is usually best to let a dealer remedy any problems first. Make sure you get any work agreed in writing and in the vast majority of cases any work should be covered by the warranty.


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How Long Do You Have To Reject A Car?

If you choose to reject a vehicle, it must be done within the first six months of delivery. All you need is your car, the keys and documentation and take it to your dealer along with a letter outlining the reasons for rejecting the vehicle.


How To Reject A Car On Finance?

However, if the car is on finance, you are not technically the owner, just the registered keeper. You’ll need to contact the finance company who will then negotiate with the dealer. If you are experiencing problems during this process then you can contact the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) or Trading Standards. 

Regardless of the vehicle, don’t be in a hurry to reject the car, it should always be a last option. If, given the opportunity to sort out the issue, the dealer becomes obstructive, unhelpful, or more precisely, can’t fix it - then you should take the opportunity to reject the car and start again with another. 

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