A USED-CAR dealership has defended itself against allegations that it sold a Tamworth man a “lemon” during a visit to the region.
Danyle Elsley maintains he has had nothing but trouble with the Nissan Pathfinder purchased when Australian Fleet Sales (AFS) came to Tamworth a year ago.
The 38-year-old father says he rues the day he went rubbernecking at the road show and left with a car he claims does not work and a massive loan he is struggling to repay.
“This was the worst decision of my life ... it’s destroyed me,” he said. “I’m born and bred in Tamworth and I know now I should have shopped locally.”
But AFS director James Keepkie vehemently denies all of Mr Elsley’s claims and insists the company has fulfilled all its obligations, including twice repairing the vehicle even though the statutory warranty period had expired.
He also said that following mediation, the NSW Consumer, Trader and Tenancy Tribunal had dismissed Mr Elsley’s claims in July.
“AFS maintains Mr Elsley has a mechanically sound vehicle,” he said. “In fact, Mr Elsley would have even acquired his own roadworthy certificate in February 2013 – some five months after the initial purchase of the vehicle to re-register his vehicle.
“AFS believes that it has done more than is required by law. That being said, we try to go out of our way to ensure all customers are happy and excited about their purchase.
“It is a company policy to assist our customers where we can.”
Mr Elsley says back on October 22 last year he was about to walk out of the yard empty-handed when an AFS salesman offered him an $8000 trade-in on his car.
The self-employed businessman thought that would bring the cost of a Nissan Pathfinder he fancied down to $33,000 and signed the paperwork.
It was only a couple of days later when he realised he had only received $1000 for his car and had signed up to a $58,000 finance deal.
Mr Elsley tried to cancel the deal but was told it was too late. He did, however, accept an offer of $3000 more towards the trade-in.
But Mr Elsley claims that since taking possession of the car it has been beset by engine trouble, with a local mechanic even describing it as a “lemon”.
Mr Elsley has sought legal advice and is keen to hear from any other locals who might have a dispute with AFS.
“I want to see if they’ve been affected the same as me. I’ve got a lawyer who’ll be representing me, but if there’s other people in the same boat as me, we’ll be more looking at a class action,” he said.