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Dealer misstated odometer miles on new car

stratojohnstratojohn Posts: 2
edited August 2015 in General
We need opinions on what to do if a dealer sells you a new car that has more miles on the odometer than what we were told and than what is on the sales contract.

We just bought a new Fiat 500X Trekking from Fiat of Maple Shade in N.J. The salesman said it had 23 miles on it, and the sales contract states the same. I didn't notice the odometer reading on the test drive.

On the drive home, I saw the odometer was at 270 miles. We drove the car off the lot after-hours on a Saturday, so I couldn't take it back. However, the salesperson followed us home to get the title for our trade-in, and when I told him about it, his attitude was "Whoops, my mistake." I told him we would resolve the issue on Monday.

My wife is upset about this, and while 270 miles may not be totally unreasonable for new-car miles (but I'm not sure), I figure my options are:

* Ask for the transaction to be voided and get our old car back. There were other things I didn't like about the car-buying experience there. We would get the same car somewhere else.
* Ask for the dealer to exchange the car for an identical one with fewer miles
* Keep the car and ask for some of compensation for the contract breach and for the extra miles on the car.
* Contact the N.J. Office of Consumer Protection.

We would love to hear what you would do if this happened to you.

Comments

  • carboy21carboy21 Posts: 760
    Knock off 500 bucks from the sale price. Least hassle free option.
  • steverstever Posts: 52,462
    edited August 2015
    270 miles is nothing. $135 at fifty cents a mile is about what the IRS would pay for "usage". Consumer protection is likely going to tell you the "clerical" error is minimal.

    I'd be happy if the dealer offered me a free oil change or two but I don't think it's that big of a deal.

    If the 500X was advertised on their inventory somewhere with the VIN, you may want to check that to see if they sold you the same car you test drove and didn't pull a switcheroo on you (270 miles could explain a dealer swap).
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaPosts: 64,490
    I'd ask for a free oil service or perhaps some accessory item from the gift shop. I don't think any government agency is going to be too interested in such a small error, although it is annoying.
  • kyfdxkyfdx Everywhere, USAPosts: 127,848
    stever said:

    270 miles is nothing. $135 at fifty cents a mile is about what the IRS would pay for "usage". Consumer protection is likely going to tell you the "clerical" error is minimal.

    I'd be happy if the dealer offered me a free oil change or two but I don't think it's that big of a deal.

    If the 500X was advertised on their inventory somewhere with the VIN, you may want to check that to see if they sold you the same car you test drove and didn't pull a switcheroo on you (270 miles could explain a dealer swap).

    The IRS reimbursement (and, I think it's around 57 cents/mile now) is designed to reimburse all costs for driving those miles (gas, depreciation, maintenance, tire wear, etc).

    Since it's a small amount of miles, you might get $100, just for the mistake... but, actual reimbursement for the mileage would probably be $0.20/mile or so..

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  • stratojohnstratojohn Posts: 2
    edited August 2015
    Thanks all for the feedback. I'd be more willing to give the dealer the benefit of the doubt on the mileage if they also didn't make another "clerical" error at settlement by trying to charge us an extra $1,000. I appreciate everyone's perspective on how big of a deal I should make out of the mileage (or breach-of contract) issue.
  • carboy21carboy21 Posts: 760
    edited August 2015
    I would not accept this 270 miles error as small. I prefer a brand new virgin car and not some demonstrator driven by 25 customers. I am checking out 3 Golf TDI 2015 and they are each priced according to the mileage on them even though new. The one that has 500 miles and is priced 400 dollars less then the one which is 0 mileage. When I buy I see that the car is not a demonstrator and had 0 mileage or ask for a discount
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