CHEATING CAR YARD UP DATE have your say in court

Submitted: Sunday, Jul 17, 2005 at 18:18
ThreadID: 24809 Views:2611 Replies:16 FollowUps:13
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Thanks for everyones help,
I thought I can let the readers tell the NISSAN DEALER what they think the difference between a car with log books is worth and one without, seeing they say it doesnt make a difference. Please if you could answer the following questions Ill keep them if I need to take them to court.

Which 4wd would you buy if two cars were identical one with log books with a full service history or one with dodgey books e.g not original with out a sevice history.

How much more money would you value a car with log books and a full service history to one with out.

And what do you think about a NISSAN DEALER that sells a car guaranteeing they have the log books for the car and then cant produce them after the sale.

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Reply By: 120scruiser - Sunday, Jul 17, 2005 at 18:33

Sunday, Jul 17, 2005 at 18:33
Take the car back and get your money back.
I think you will find a clause in the contract that gives a period where you can take it back if you aren't happy and get a refund. Not sure if there is a fee but it may make you sleep alot better.
AnswerID: 120802

Follow Up By: Member - Davoe (Widgiemooltha) - Sunday, Jul 17, 2005 at 20:59

Sunday, Jul 17, 2005 at 20:59
phew youd better be more well informed than that if you are about to go out making large purchases! once your signiture goes on that bit of paper thats the end of the story when it comes to buying cars there is no cooling off period and the car yard WILL hold you to the contract. Know a few people that thought like you that the bottom feeders will understand that you have changed yourmind BEFORE taking delivery - NOT A CHANCE!!
FollowupID: 375893

Follow Up By: Member - Blue (VIC) - Monday, Jul 18, 2005 at 10:56

Monday, Jul 18, 2005 at 10:56
Hi Davoe, when I signed for the Triton the salesman pointed out the rather large red paragraph stating that I had a 7 day cooling off period. Not sure if that only applies to new cars though...
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Follow Up By: Member - Davoe (Widgiemooltha) - Monday, Jul 18, 2005 at 15:17

Monday, Jul 18, 2005 at 15:17
Never used to be the case but my experiences arnt recent. Could also vary from state to state or even the dealers own code of practice. Sounds good to me though
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Reply By: Time - Sunday, Jul 17, 2005 at 18:33

Sunday, Jul 17, 2005 at 18:33

To me the books are all important.

I would not buy a vehicle without books, nor would I buy a vehicle with "recreated books". Doesn't matter how good it looks or how good the deal seems, there are always other vehicles out there that have a genuine service history.

Have you tried going to Nissan HQ to complain about the dealer? In your situation I would demand my money back.


AnswerID: 120803

Reply By: Mainey (WA) - Sunday, Jul 17, 2005 at 19:00

Sunday, Jul 17, 2005 at 19:00

“without prejudice”

Which 4wd would you buy if two cars were identical, one with log books with a full service history or one with dodgy books eg not original with out a service history?
….Only an absolute fool would buy the vehicle without the log books and also without the service history, IF the two vehicles were as you say identical, including appearance, options, Klms and price!
I question the terminology of your statement “with dodgy books eg not original” are you implying the log books are there, but they are ‘doctored’ or showing false, misleading or untrue information that the Nissan dealer has himself stated to you as being the ORIGINAL log books for the vehicle?

How much more money would you value a car with log books and a full service history to one with out.
….Depends on the warranty offered on both identical vehicles, as a warranty that is for 3 or 4 years and 30 to 40 thousand klms on a vehicle is consumer peace of mind as to the mechanical condition that can be expected, and if you have driven the vehicle and checked it out yourself and you are happy with it, then I see no reason to know the previous history IF it is a low Klms vehicle ??

And what do you think about a NISSAN dealer that sells a car GUARANTEEING they have the log books for the car and then can’t produce them after the sale.
….He did not give you the total package as you have been sold, which would have included the log books, as he stated to you he did have them, as to why he did not give you the log books is another question, if they NEVER existed in the first place and he lied to you just to make a sale then he is not worthy of retaining his Motor Vehicle Dealers Licence and a decision should be made to take legal action.

As to PAIN, appears you are going through it :-(
AnswerID: 120807

Follow Up By: rudu - Sunday, Jul 17, 2005 at 20:31

Sunday, Jul 17, 2005 at 20:31

$40,000 nissan patrol 80,000km dealership manager guaranteeing books are on there way with a full service history.This was the differance to purchase the car or not, Four months later given new log book with no previos owners name and one service hand written in, And told atleast you have somewhere to start. Dealership manager says log books dont make a differance to a sale at the most $500.00

As in life WHAT GOES AROUND COMES AROUND Ijust hope x2

FollowupID: 375889

Follow Up By: Member - DOZER- Monday, Jul 18, 2005 at 21:08

Monday, Jul 18, 2005 at 21:08
All crap asside....if you can get a 3 year extended warrenty out of them to make up for their lies, then do it and get on with life.
Make sure you threten to sue the sales manager personally if you have health problems that can be associated with the stress you are under because of him.
FollowupID: 376072

Reply By: Pedirka - Sunday, Jul 17, 2005 at 19:07

Sunday, Jul 17, 2005 at 19:07
Mate! there is no way that this cars value would be the same without logbooks. Without logbooks, there would be no way of gaugeing how well the car was looked after. Without logbooks, I would not rate this vehicle at all.

Without knowing how much you paid and what model you got, it would be hard to put a figure on the vehicle. My own opinion is I would not have considered to purchase in the first place.

This Nissan Dealer, if they are honest should back out of the deal quickly and give you your money back before you go to Fair Trading and/or court. The dealer certainly cant say they have logbooks when they have'nt.

Confirms what they say about some used car salesmen.
These guys are probably thinking they might have got away with it.
Also then can you trust the odometer?


AnswerID: 120809

Reply By: Diamond (Vic) - Sunday, Jul 17, 2005 at 19:50

Sunday, Jul 17, 2005 at 19:50
its really a no brainer.
1 vehicle has log books and service history.
2 indentical vehicle/ks no log books.probly an old renta car/mine vehicle thats why theres no books.
wouldnt touch vehicle 2 with a 10 foot pole.
price diference is imposible to say.
how much worse can a vehicle with no books really be(note sarcasm).
screw them in court coz they screwed you in the yard.
AnswerID: 120815

Reply By: Member Eric - Sunday, Jul 17, 2005 at 19:53

Sunday, Jul 17, 2005 at 19:53
send me a email and Ill give send a valuation on line no charge
AnswerID: 120816

Follow Up By: Member Eric - Sunday, Jul 17, 2005 at 19:54

Sunday, Jul 17, 2005 at 19:54
lol this may help

FollowupID: 375877

Reply By: Ted (Cairns) - Sunday, Jul 17, 2005 at 20:10

Sunday, Jul 17, 2005 at 20:10
There are HEAPS of cars for sale all over the place. Unless the car was worth below $5,000 I wouldn't even bother to look at something without logbooks. There are always other cars. Maybe if it was 40% below price? But only maybe, as I'm not rich enough to buy cheap stuff;-)

If the dealer has indicated in writing that he is selling "a car with logbooks" and then he only sold "a car" then he has not met his obligations under the sale contract.

Price of Car+(price of)logbooks= sale price

Price of Car=sale price-logbooks ??

You paid sale price didn't you?

IMHO, looks like he owes you some money, or the contract is void. I'd personally give him the car back and buy something else. There are a few halfways decent dealers around who credit customers with some intelligence. Do a search on this forum. Eg. PhilGilbert in Sydney is really good for new toyotas. No I don't work for them but I almost bought a car off them a few months ago.

AnswerID: 120822

Reply By: hl - Sunday, Jul 17, 2005 at 21:35

Sunday, Jul 17, 2005 at 21:35

If you're that fussed about a log book, you probably should not have taken delivery without it!
However, since you have that truck now and maybe even like it, consider this:
If it looks alright, drives alright and feels alright, just get the services done that you think it may have missed out on, right now.
A Patrol with those k's could have missed a few oil changes (bad), but otherwise, there is not that much "vital" stuff that needed to be done. First coolant change is at 80,000 or 4 years, same for brake fluid. Rear diff should have been done at 40,000. Front wheel bearings at 40,000, but if it hasn't been under water much, I would prefer that the dealer apprentices don't touch them. Anything else is probably in the category "be thankful nobody stuffed around with it".
AnswerID: 120845

Reply By: vitara - Monday, Jul 18, 2005 at 08:57

Monday, Jul 18, 2005 at 08:57
Hi rudu, mate nail them in court, wether your happy with the vehicle or not is not the issue. The issue is that you were promised the log books (GENUINE) not just a new book with an updated service history, and they didn't deliver what you were promised. As said how do you know what oil changes were or have been done, as we all know vital for diesels. As for the value of the vehicle hard to say but would definately make a difference to the value. I have a 89 hilux 2.8 diesel have every service stamped since day one 5K every receipt for money spent on the vehicle since new, air, fuel,oil, oil it'self,tyres, wheel alignments you name it it's there, I change the oil every 2500klms including filter (genuine), tell me that if my'n was sitting next to another hilux side by side same klms same age and looked just as good,same accessories, BUT the other one had no service history, no log books which one would you buy, Thats why mine has books because I won't purchase any vehicle without them full stop. If I ring up on the phone to ask a person about the vehicle the first thing I ask does it have up to date log books if not I say thankyou not interested.I dont even keep them in my glove box incase some one breaks into my car and takes them just for the hell of it. Mate take the (Excuse the expression) pricks to court and nail them to the wall there a@@holes for what they have done to you. Good luck Take Care Vitara
AnswerID: 120890

Reply By: Skinny- Monday, Jul 18, 2005 at 09:20

Monday, Jul 18, 2005 at 09:20
Hi Rudu, Thought the dealer may have the sense to let you out of the contract.

I would only buy a vehicle with log books and have walked away from good looking and well priced trucks because of them not having or having dodgey log books.

If money was an issue.....Since most problems that occur through poor servicing may cost big dollars you would have to be a gambling man to buy one without the books. If the truck was only 3 year old or so I think it matters less. If it is 6 years plus then I would guess most repairs could cost $5000 plus for major probelms.
I would need to feel the vehicle looked and drove ok and would only take the risk if it were say 20% below market value.

These vehicles are pretty good even if servicing has been let slip for a bit. But like all of us years of abuse take thier toll.

Any dealer who lies to make a sale and I ahve met many that I have uncovered their lies do not deserve to have a licence. LIES LIES LIES

My last piece of advice. You can't change the world and court is not for being right or exacting revenge. The only people who win are the lawyers.

Perhaps cut your lossed and ensure you let everyone know who the guy is and perhaps someone will pay him a visit.


AnswerID: 120891

Reply By: Member - Landie - Monday, Jul 18, 2005 at 09:33

Monday, Jul 18, 2005 at 09:33
Hi Rudu

Your best course of action is too talk to a legal firm (if you haven't already) that has expertise in these matters. Clearly the issue has caused you great concern, and if the legal firm believes you can mount a case against the car yard get them to write the letter to them.

A letter from a legal firm indicates you are serious about the matter and is more likely to get the attention you deserve.

AnswerID: 120894

Follow Up By: robak (QLD) - Monday, Jul 18, 2005 at 12:04

Monday, Jul 18, 2005 at 12:04

I'm with landie on this one. Get proffesional advice from a lawyer. My guess is, since your asking the question on this forum, that you haven't yet.

I don't know much about the law, but I can tell you that if you go to the magistrate and tell him or her that your mates on the forum reckon log books are worth $xxx, then they're going to think your an idiot and that you're wasting their time and your money going to court. The judges don't know how much log books are worth either, and they'll certainly give more credibility to the dealer, then to you.

You need to get a proffesional witness, like a car dealer, to give their opinion under oath in front of the judge. I'm sure the dealer will also get one of their mates to say that their only worth $500.

If the contract you signed said that you'll get logbooks then you've got them, haven't you? The dealer will say that they have fullfilled thair part of the agreement. The contract did NOT state that the logbooks have to be "to your satisfaction", or of a certain standard, right?

I know a lot of people tell you to fight this in court but it's not them that are risking loosing a lot time and money on this. Court is an expensive and tedious process. It could be six months before you even get a hearing.

My guess is, the dealer knows they're safe because you haven't got yourself a lawyer yet. They do this for a living so it certainly won't be the first time they've been threatened with court action.

Unfortunately, justice is a game only played by those who can afford it.


FollowupID: 375973

Follow Up By: Member - Landie - Monday, Jul 18, 2005 at 13:11

Monday, Jul 18, 2005 at 13:11
Worth noting - never go to court without a lawyer. The system will treat you as arrogant if you do.

I'm not a lawyer trying to drum up business, just seen plenty of examples of this........
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Follow Up By: rudu - Tuesday, Jul 19, 2005 at 12:15

Tuesday, Jul 19, 2005 at 12:15
Sorry but I dont think I explained it well,

We have been advised to take them to court from everyone e.g raa,mta,legal service,law firm, and make a claim they had 4 months to own up to the fact they didnt have the books thats why we didnt pull out of the deal,they kept saying they were on there way.The sale was on the condition it had books with a full service history, this was a written and verbal contract with a witnes. We had to take a small claims court order with a value on the books out to to get them to do anything. The problem is we have to show in court that when we go to sell the car or when anyone buys a car with out books its worth less. This could be to a private buyer or a yard,The NISSAN DEALER hasnt realy offered anything just that a car with books only makes about a $500.00 differance to a sale.
what I have to show in court is it makes a differance to me and anyone else and how much I think there worth.

Thanks for your replies.
like I say if it was the other way around the car yard would be after me for money.
FollowupID: 376154

Reply By: ev700 - Monday, Jul 18, 2005 at 10:20

Monday, Jul 18, 2005 at 10:20
Taking into account the advice of motoring organisations such as the RACQ and NRMA, I would not buy a vehicle without a demonstrated satisfactory service history. From the comments of vehicle manufacturers in service handbooks, I am convinced that poor servicing affects the life and value of the vehicle, and also has connotations for the safety of the driver and passengers.

Because of the distinct possibility that a vehicle could have been a hire car or could otherwise have operated in harsh conditions and without adequate servicing in accordance with the maker's specifications, a vehicle without log books would in my estimation be worth wholesale value only. As stated above I would not buy the vehicle, however a 20% reduction in price would be expected by others I have spoken with.

Dealers purport to be the experts on the particular make of vehicle and the representatives of the vehicle manufacturer. Vehicle makers limit the number of dealerships available and provide special rewards, incentives and other support to dealerships. A customer is informationally disadvantaged in negotiating with a dealer and has the expectation, promoted by dealers and manufacturers, that he/she will be a valued client and will be dealt with decently, responsibly and fairly in the purchase, ongoing servicing and maintenance, and eventual sale of the manufacturer's product.

Service records are a key control in the servicing and warranty of a vehicle and are relied upon by the dealer and manufacturer in the servicing of the vehicle and in any dispute with the client.

In view of thses points alone it would be unfair and in my view unconscionable for a dealer to warrant that a vehicle has log books available - and this also would be taken normally to means that the dealer had secured possession of service history and (that) service history met the manufacturer's standards) - and then supply substitute records which do not meet the dealer's nor the manufacturer's own policies for the completion and maintenance of satisfacory service records. There is also the point that dealers do not rely entirely on paper documents but have access to electronic records via the dealership network.

I believe the dealer and indirectly the manufacturer have a responsibility to provide frank and full advice to an intending purchaser of any known detriment to the operation, safety and value of the vehicle prior to sale.

So in answer to your question, I am not satisfied that the dealer has taken all steps available to it to resolve your dispute and I regard its conduct to date as related by you to be unfair, bullying and probably unconscionable.

I do not think quantum of loss needs to be addressed until the dealer has convinced the Court or independent arbiter that it has exhausted all reasonable steps to procure the service history.

AnswerID: 120899

Follow Up By: hl - Monday, Jul 18, 2005 at 11:52

Monday, Jul 18, 2005 at 11:52

Seems like most of you fellows have an awful lot of faith in dealer service. I could tell you a few stories about what happened to my (new) cars that were serviced by franchised dealers. To be fair, most of them do actually change the oil (but don't bet on it). As for the rest,
I have had over the years:

Batteries overfilled (with acid leaking into the battery tray)
Wrong coolant
Wrong grease put in balljoints
Stuffed wheel alignment (it was ok before they touched it)
Handbrake cable adjusted too tight (rear brakes were smoking)
Radiator cap left off
Engine stuffed because someone turned it over without timing belt in place.
And probably a few more I can't remember. And, these were all vehicles in new car warranty!


( I do agree it is a very poor showing on that dealer's part if the book was promised)


FollowupID: 375972

Follow Up By: ev700 - Monday, Jul 18, 2005 at 12:58

Monday, Jul 18, 2005 at 12:58
I agree with you however he has to compare what should have been with what was.

My wife's Falcon has suffered problems immediately after servicing but otherwise performs faultlessly.

Two months ago it went in to an RACQ authorised repairer for service and auto transmission flush through. When it came back it leaked transmission fluid over the garage floor. Took it back and the claim was that a 'top seal' was faulty. Had to pay extra, what other choice was there?

Had I not seen the fluid on the floor the wife would have driven the car until the transmission suffered damage - there is no dip-stick to check.

The repairer also had to replace the wiper rubbers they had replaced during servicing. These were cut much too short and popped out. Now notice a deep scratch where the outside edge of the wiper cut the screen on the LH side.

You wonder how many accidents and damage are caused by poor quality control of vehicle servicing. As usual, those who cut corners give the others a bad name.

FollowupID: 375985

Follow Up By: hl - Monday, Jul 18, 2005 at 13:17

Monday, Jul 18, 2005 at 13:17
Yes, I fully agree, and given a choice, of course I would prefer a car with documented service history.
But, at the end of the day, it does not necessarily mean everything was done right. With a fairly new car like that one, the only major issue would be missed oil changes, the rest I would not worry too much.
You could possibly tell by checking for sludge in the oil filler cap if it had no oil change for a long time. Also, varnish on the dipstick can be a tell-tale.
Interestingly, an aquaintance of mine had bought a 4.2 Patrol diesel some years ago and he noticed rather a lot of sludge in the sump and rocker cover. The car had done about 120,000k and it sure looked like it had minimal oil changes. He cleaned it all out and the car did another 200,000km before he sold it without any major dramas!

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Reply By: dezmo - Monday, Jul 18, 2005 at 14:17

Monday, Jul 18, 2005 at 14:17

I am sorry to read about your predicament. For you to go to court you need EVIDENCE. Certainly records from a post like this will not carry any weight in court.

From what i have read you seem to be running this case in contract law . I am by no means an expert in this area but as a minimum you will need to establish:

(a) existance of a contract
(b) the log books being an essential term of the contract
(c) a breach of the term
(d) the benefits of a particular remedy ie damages/rescind the contract

The breach element may be able to be made out on the contract. Read it all very carefully. Was the provision of the logbooks an ESSENTIAL TERM? When were they to be provided by etc ?

Secondly, did the contract specify what would occur if there was a breach of a term of the contract ie. a right to rescind the contract within a certain time period etc.

If you are attempting to establish the damage i would obtainat least three written appraisals from registered valuers. These WRITTEN appraisals should be very SPECIFIC and relate to your vehicle. It would be ok for the valuers to provide a range in depreciation ie worth $1500-$3000 less.

For my two bobs worth I think the court would be reluctant to award you "damages" in such a case. Should you want to rescind the contract (get your money back and give back the car) i think you may have a reasonable case.

While i do not wish to discourage you, be warned contract is a technical and complex area of the law.

What Court are you going to? What are the costs rules for this Court ie if you loose are you going to have to pay the other parties legal costs? Be mindful of this.

Getting a lawyer may be a good idea, but representation and advice is unlikely to be cheap. You need to try and weigh up the risks and the econmics of the case (which i appreciate is very difficult). A lawyer may say you have a weak case and certainly do not give a guarantee of success? If you win and it is a no costs award jurisdiction the lawyers fees may be more than you are awarded.

Have you looked at the TRADE PRACTICES ACT, if not see it here at:

You may find these laws are a more effective way of protecting your rights. In particular consider Section 52 (misleading and deceptive conduct) and Section 82 (damages).

This is a commonwealth act and you may not be able to rely on these laws in the state court you are going to? If your not sure call the court and ask if they have jurisdiction to hear a matter under the TPA.

Good luck. My advice to you would be to put pressure on the dealer and try to SETTLE.

Be careful going to Court. You wont get justice and if your lucky you will get the law.

AnswerID: 120921

Reply By: Photoman - Monday, Jul 18, 2005 at 14:48

Monday, Jul 18, 2005 at 14:48
Hi Rudu

I've been watching you story with interest as I had the exact same thing happen, NISSAN To!!!! , but at the time I didn't have the head space to follow it up, (Plus the Pathfinder I traded was on its last legs)....

Anyway, My advice.... Make an Appointment with your local Chamber Magistrate, they will tell you if you have a case and can be very helpful, I have even had the write legal letters for me!!! This is a free service, and will give you an Idea if you should follow through or swollow and walk away.

if its worth chasing, then call the "Civil Justice Centre". They will "invite" the dealer to a mediation and thy have 2 weeks to reply. They probably wont, but it is all recorded, so if you do take it to court, you will have a clear history of trying to resulve the problem and it will apper to the judge that you tried to avoid court but were left with no option by the dealer, Judges hate people using courts to setle pety matters unless its a last resort.

If you follow this path it may

1 avoid getting to court
2 lessen the cances of you loosing
3 lessen the risk of you being landed with "expences" for both parties.

I've followed this prociedure for a number of problems with and it has worked every time
AnswerID: 120929

Reply By: Member - Bradley- Monday, Jul 18, 2005 at 16:58

Monday, Jul 18, 2005 at 16:58
Log books are nice, but dont put absolute faith in them as the 'gospel' , for one they wont tell you if its a lemon and spent half its life in the shop getting warranty repairs done, and they also can be 'sweetened' up easily.

eg - i did a service on a traded in vx commodore once, 40,000k , NEVER serviced !! About 2.5 litrers of black tar came out of the sump, and bugger me, a week later it turned up out in the yard all detailed up and meeting the guise of a "holden approved used vehicle' WITH a full comprehensive service history all stamped up nicely... I doubt brocky would put his thumb up to that one :-)
AnswerID: 120957

Follow Up By: MichaelN - Friday, Jul 22, 2005 at 12:22

Friday, Jul 22, 2005 at 12:22
hahahaha .. thats hillarious ! very dodgy .. but still hillarious.
FollowupID: 376752

Reply By: Member - Jeff M (WA) - Monday, Jul 18, 2005 at 17:58

Monday, Jul 18, 2005 at 17:58
I'll keep it simple for you:

1. I probally wouldn't buy the car at all without log books, not for that kind of money anyway ($40,000).

2. I'd have to be swayed pretty heavily to buy it, they'd have to offer me at the VERY LEAST $5000 off the going price, and even then I'd proablly still look around for a comparable vehicle and pay the $5k more. I'd feel happier that way.
AnswerID: 120968

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