Car 'cloners' target prestige cars
- Mercedes C-Class tops hit list
- Audis and BMWs in top 10
- Consumers warned to check cars carefully
- Sneak preview of all-new C-Class
- Mercedes C-Class: what readers think
- Mercedes C-Class coupe: how it may look
- C-Class AMG breaks cover
- Mercedes theft gang mastermind jailed
- What Car? checklists
- Premium car prices to soar by £2500?
- Fastest Audi TT breaks cover
- Mercedes nets safety award
- Audi A4 gets two new entry-level models
- First image: Audi TTRS
- Audi confirms TTS pricing
- Audi TT gets first diesel engine
- Congestion charge-busting BMW on the way
- What Car? TV: M3 new vs used
- New tax-efficient A4s here by summer
- Is BMW building a supercar?
- First drive: BMW 320d Convertible
- Audi A4 gets efficient new engines
- Face-lifted BMW 3 Series revealed
- New engines for Audi A4 and A5
Car thieves are targeting prestige cars then changing their identities to sell them to unsuspecting buyers.
The Mercedes C-Class is the most popular model with criminals, according to vehicle history check provider, HPI. One in 10 cloned vehicles it uncovers is a Mercedes C-Class. Other upmarket models in its top-10 include the Audi A4, the Audi TT and the BMW 3 Series.
To disguise the fact that the cars have been stolen thieves 'clone' them – the car crime equivalent of identity theft. The number plates and VIN (Vehicle Identification Number) are replaced with those from a similar vehicle of the same make and model.
Used car buyers are being urged to watch out for cloned vehicles. Advice includes:
• Be vary wary of a car which is offered for much less than it's true market value.
• Check that the VIN tallies with V5 registration document
• Even if it does, be cautious if there are signs that the VIN plate has been tampered with.
A history check may not reveal if a vehicle has been cloned. However, HPI's guarantee offers up to £30,000 back if a car which has been checked turns out to have been cloned.
Used cars for sale
Reviews and News
Our reviews are based on hard data and thorough testing in the real world.
Up to the minute news from around the globe