Bought a brand new vehicle but the history shows a different owner

Joined
Jan 9, 2019
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#1
I took my vehicle in for a service at the dealership. This is a vehicle that was sold to me by the dealership as brand new and financed by my bank. I paid the full price for a brand new vehicle. However, the vehicle history (printed out by the dealership) shows another person's name as the vehicle's registered owner. Since the vehicle is new, my name should appear there. I am only listed as the service customer and not the owner.

Following this revelation, I took the morning off work to visit the vehicle licensing department where I showed the staff the vehicle history from the dealership and inquired about ownership. I was informed that this could be related to vehicle cloning (from my understanding this happens with pre-owned vehicles?). The licensing department ownership history shows my bank as the title holder, me as the owner, and three previous owners: the dealership where I bought the vehicle, as well as the manufacturer dealership (the HQ of this vehicle brand). I was also able to renew my vehicle license this year without incident.

I am obviously worried about all of this given the abysmal service I received from this particular dealership. What does it mean?
(a) Did the dealership sell me a pre-owned car as a new one?
(b) Is this some sophisticated vehicle cloning scam?

I would appreciate some guidance from anyone who has experienced something similar.
 

Pitbull

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Apr 8, 2006
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#2
If they sold it as new, and the Vehicle papers show Code 2. Take it back and insist they replace it with a Code 1.

New registration vehicles will be Code 1 - First owner. Any subsequent owners will show Code 2.
 

CT_Biker

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#3
) The licensing department ownership history shows my bank as the title holder, me as the owner, and three previous owners: the dealership where I bought the vehicle, as well as the manufacturer dealership (the HQ of this vehicle brand). I was also able to renew my vehicle license this year without incident.
AFAIK the car should be registered in the name of the dealer, for roadworthy purposes and insurance
 

CT_Biker

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#4
If they sold it as new, and the Vehicle papers show Code 2. Take it back and insist they replace it with a Code 1.

New registration vehicles will be Code 1 - First owner. Any subsequent owners will show Code 2.
I was about to add this to my comment
 

Sumen

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Mar 30, 2016
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#5
I took my vehicle in for a service at the dealership. This is a vehicle that was sold to me by the dealership as brand new and financed by my bank. I paid the full price for a brand new vehicle. However, the vehicle history (printed out by the dealership) shows another person's name as the vehicle's registered owner. Since the vehicle is new, my name should appear there. I am only listed as the service customer and not the owner.

Following this revelation, I took the morning off work to visit the vehicle licensing department where I showed the staff the vehicle history from the dealership and inquired about ownership. I was informed that this could be related to vehicle cloning (from my understanding this happens with pre-owned vehicles?). The licensing department ownership history shows my bank as the title holder, me as the owner, and three previous owners: the dealership where I bought the vehicle, as well as the manufacturer dealership (the HQ of this vehicle brand). I was also able to renew my vehicle license this year without incident.

I am obviously worried about all of this given the abysmal service I received from this particular dealership. What does it mean?
(a) Did the dealership sell me a pre-owned car as a new one?
(b) Is this some sophisticated vehicle cloning scam?

I would appreciate some guidance from anyone who has experienced something similar.
Is the third previous owner the name that appeared on the printout at the dealership or is the three previous owners "The Bank", "Dealership" and "Manufacturing brand HQ" ?
 
Joined
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Messages
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#6
If they sold it as new, and the Vehicle papers show Code 2. Take it back and insist they replace it with a Code 1.

New registration vehicles will be Code 1 - First owner. Any subsequent owners will show Code 2.
Which document document contains the Codes?
I bought this vehicle over a year ago but still have all the documents.
 
Joined
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#7
Is the third previous owner the name that appeared on the printout at the dealership or is the three previous owners "The Bank", "Dealership" and "Manufacturing brand HQ" ?
The licensing department showed 4 names for owners: the bank, me, the dealership where I purchased the vehicle, and the manufacturing brand HQ dealership. So 3 names are companies, one name an individual (which is me).
The printout from the dealership shows one name for owner. This is an individual (not me).
 

Drifter

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Dec 19, 2012
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#8
Could be a simple typo by the dealership when they entered the details. If the reg dept shows the correct info, dont worry about it. What was the delivery mileage?
 

Sumen

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#9
The licensing department showed 4 names for owners: the bank, me, the dealership where I purchased the vehicle, and the manufacturing brand HQ dealership. So 3 names are companies, one name an individual (which is me).
The printout from the dealership shows one name for owner. This is an individual (not me).
Then you got nothing to worry about since the licensing department has the correct details.

But what would I do is query with dealership as to why they have someone else's name on the printout.
 

Pitbull

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#10
Which document document contains the Codes?
I bought this vehicle over a year ago but still have all the documents.
The vehicle papers itself. You can draw a copy from the Licensing office. Original you can only get once you own the car outright. Bank has access to those.
 

envo

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#11
It's not a mistake or a typo or anything related to road worthy or some such.

Dealerships regularly "sell" vehicles to make targets put in place by the car manufacturer. So if you sell 15 Renault Kwids this month, you get a bonus of R80000 for example.

When they get to 14, but can't find a 15th buyer, the dealership itself "buys" the car, which means vehicle license/reg is done.

Sometimes these cars are also sold in between Dealerships if one needs stock of another but can't get it from the manufacturer.

Nowhere did you mention the ODO reading when taking delivery of the car, so I would assume it was low enough to be classed a brand new car, to you.
 
Joined
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#12
It's not a mistake or a typo or anything related to road worthy or some such.

Dealerships regularly "sell" vehicles to make targets put in place by the car manufacturer. So if you sell 15 Renault Kwids this month, you get a bonus of R80000 for example.

When they get to 14, but can't find a 15th buyer, the dealership itself "buys" the car, which means vehicle license/reg is done.

Sometimes these cars are also sold in between Dealerships if one needs stock of another but can't get it from the manufacturer.

Nowhere did you mention the ODO reading when taking delivery of the car, so I would assume it was low enough to be classed a brand new car, to you.
Are you suggesting that this vehicle was in fact not new and the manufacturer was defrauded?

The odometry reading was under 15km when I bought it (this can easily be tampered with though). The vehicle was supposedly ordered from the factory since I insisted on this.

Would the licensing department not have captured the details of such a sale (to meet manufacturer targets)? The ownership history begins with the manufacturer HQ dealership listed as owner and title holder, then the local dealership where I bought the vehicle listed as owner, then the bank listed as title holder, then me listed as owner.
 
Last edited:

Drifter

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#13
No, not at all. The licensing will only capture detail when it goes for first registration. I really think you are worrying about nothing.
 

SauRoNZA

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#15
What does the registration papers say?

The dealerships's own systems can easily be confused. Every time I take my bike in there is a confusion between two bikes assigned to my name.

More than likely the vehicle was brand new and was first registered to you (the bank would have objected anyway regarding the registration papers if it wasn't new) but there is a problem on their system.

Possibly it was pending sale to someone else and they got added. Or someone simply slipped on the VIN number entry.
 

SauRoNZA

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#16
Are you suggesting that this vehicle was in fact not new and the manufacturer was defrauded?

The odometry reading was under 15km when I bought it (this can easily be tampered with though). The vehicle was supposedly ordered from the factory since I insisted on this.

Would the licensing department not have captured the details of such a sale (to meet manufacturer targets)? The ownership history begins with the manufacturer HQ dealership listed as owner and title holder, then the local dealership where I bought the vehicle listed as owner, then the bank listed as title holder, then me listed as owner.
No it can't.

The registration paper will clearly show previous ownership and even registration numbers.
 
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#17
What does the registration papers say?

The dealerships's own systems can easily be confused. Every time I take my bike in there is a confusion between two bikes assigned to my name.

More than likely the vehicle was brand new and was first registered to you (the bank would have objected anyway regarding the registration papers if it wasn't new) but there is a problem on their system.

Possibly it was pending sale to someone else and they got added. Or someone simply slipped on the VIN number entry.
The bank has the registration papers since it is being financed. I have requested a copy. @envo suggestion about meeting sales targets seems plausible though.
 

Freddl

Well-Known Member
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Mar 13, 2017
Messages
206
#18
There should be only one registration on a new vehicle. I buy a new car every three years and not once have I received documents indicating a previous registration. There is something wrong here.

Dealerships have a habit of reselling a vehicle as new if it was returned to them as faulty. I once had to return a new car to the dealership because after a couple of weeks I noticed that the car had been in an accident. They replaced the car with a new one.

Three weeks later I got a call from the new owner to tell me that I had left my ID book in the car. When I questioned the guy it turned out that the car had been sold as new to him. The dealers excuse was that I had test driven the car and that is why my ID was in the car.

Also, manufacturers and dealers register car in their names as press vehicles or as demos. Later they turn back the clock and sell it as new.
 
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Messages
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#19
There should be only one registration on a new vehicle. I buy a new car every three years and not once have I received documents indicating a previous registration. There is something wrong here.

Dealerships have a habit of reselling a vehicle as new if it was returned to them as faulty. I once had to return a new car to the dealership because after a couple of weeks I noticed that the car had been in an accident. They replaced the car with a new one.

Three weeks later I got a call from the new owner to tell me that I had left my ID book in the car. When I questioned the guy it turned out that the car had been sold as new to him. The dealers excuse was that I had test driven the car and that is why my ID was in the car.

Also, manufacturers and dealers register car in their names as press vehicles or as demos. Later they turn back the clock and sell it as new.
I agree.

Dealerships are unscrupulous. I just happen to have stumbled upon the evidence of this nearly 2 years after purchasing this vehicle.

How can I avoid being tricked again into purchasing a used car as new?
 
Joined
Jan 9, 2019
Messages
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#20
The vehicle papers itself. You can draw a copy from the Licensing office. Original you can only get once you own the car outright. Bank has access to those.
The bank sent through the certificate of registration. I don't see any "Code" on it. Did you mean "Issue number"?
The issue number is recorded as "01"
The vehicle status is recorded as "new"
 
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