Helpdesk - Citroen C3 Picasso paint job problem

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  • New Citroen C3 Picasso arrives with poor paint job
  • Offered a re-spray and new bumpers, which is declined
  • Citroen offers a replacement C3 Picasso and three free services

Bleary eyed and weary after a 250-mile drive home to Kent after picking up his new C3 Picasso from Bentleys Citroën Warrington, Robert Day didn’t spot the Citroën’s patchwork paint until the cold light of the next day.

He was sure the car shouldn’t have a two-tone tint, and realised he’d been sold a Picasso with a paint problem; in daylight you couldn’t fail to see that the bumpers were a far lighter shade to the rest of the car.

He checked his rights under the Sale of Goods Act and contacted the sales manager at Bentleys informing him he would return the Picasso on Monday. He followed up his call with a letter explaining why he was rejecting it.

On Monday morning he drove the car back up to Warrington. However, despite admitting that the C3 Picasso did indeed have glaringly obvious miscoloured bumpers, the dealer refused to take the car back. Colour defects weren’t a reason for rejection, it claimed.

Instead, it offered to replace the bumpers or re-spray the car. However, Robert wasn’t convinced new bumpers would help, and he definitely didn’t want a re-spray; he’d paid for a Picasso with a perfect finish.

Adamant he was in the right, Robert handed over the keys and a copy of his rejection letter, left the car, caught the train home to Kent and called Citroën. Help wasn’t forthcoming, though, so he turned to Helpdesk.

We reassured him that the Sale of Goods Act applied because the car was patently not of satisfactory quality. Robert had done everything by the book, so we asked Citroën to look at his case again.

Citroën wasted no time, and that same afternoon offered Robert a new replacement C3 Picasso. It also threw in three free services, the Black Pack option, which includes black painted, diamond-tipped 17-inch alloy wheels and black painted bumper inserts worth £210.

‘I’m so relieved,’ said Robert. ‘I’ve owned seven Citroëns, and four of them were from Citroën Bentley, so I’m glad it all worked out okay.’

What if this happens to you?

  • Always inspect the car at the dealer before signing paperwork.
  • If you notice something later, take photographs of any defects and let your dealer know immediately that you want to reject the car.
  • Return the car with a letter confirming your rejection, and send copies to the manufacturer and finance company, if necessary.
We've prepared lots of useful advice, including a full guide on warranties that could help you with either a new or used car.

If you need our help, email us at helpdesk@whatcar.com with a few details and we'll be in touch.

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