A Birmingham trader has been ordered to pay £11,623 after being found guilty of misleading a customer over the condition of a replica Ferrari at Birmingham Magistrates Court today (30 November 2015).
Sajid Ramzan, 34, who ran A45 Motor Centre, based at 1200 Coventry Road, Yardley, was found guilty in his absence of five offences under the Consumer Protection from Unfair Trading Regulations 2008. He was fined £5,000 and ordered to pay court costs of £6,503 plus a £120 victim surcharge. The car was also subject of a forfeiture order.
Birmingham City Council brought the case after Trading Standards officers carrying out a forecourt inspection on 11 June 2014 found that an Italian replica Ferrari F335 GTS on sale had travelled 183,000 miles – 100,000 more than was displayed. The vehicle was also an undisclosed Category C insurance write off.
Further checks also revealed the red car was originally yellow, only had a 2000cc engine capacity rather than the advertised 3.5l, and was dangerous and unroadworthy – but advertised as being in ‘excellent condition’.
Trading Standards officers returned to A45 Motor Trade on 13 June 2014 to seize the fake Ferrari – and pointed out to Ramzan that simple checks had highlighted the mileage discrepancy and its write-off status.
Cllr Barbara Dring, Chair of the city council’s Licensing and Public Protection Committee, said: “People are entitled to honesty when buying vehicles and the lesson for consumers in this case is to thoroughly check the car you are looking to buy and verify the information provided is accurate and genuine.
“While Ramzan did not alter the car’s mileage he failed show due diligence in terms of thoroughly checking its history before advertising it for sale, and therefore misled a potential customer into thinking the car was in an excellent condition when it was actually dangerous and unroadworthy.
“When consumers unwittingly buy a ‘clocked’ vehicle not only is the mileage wrong but it is misrepresented, and as such could also have major mechanical problems that could put passengers’ safety at risk and lead to expensive repair bills. Consumers are advised to check a vehicle’s history before buying a used car, to be sure they’re buying what they think they are buying.”
A45 Motor Centre was able to continue operating during this investigation but is no longer trading as a business. A new, entirely unrelated, business now operates from this premises.
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