Can I reject my new car?

After a new car arrived wrongly specced, and then was involved in a road accident, the owner asks if he has the right to reject the car...

Honda CR-V Hybrid

I recently bought a new Honda CR-V from Blackpool Honda. I had asked for a sat-nav to be fitted that did not depend on me using a smartphone, and I paid £1000 extra for this. However, when I went to collect the car, I found that the required sat-nav hadn’t been fitted. I was also only given one key, being told the second one was lost. 

I left the car with the dealership to have these issues sorted out and the salesman provided me with a courtesy car while the work was being carried out. A day later the salesman phoned me to tell me that while he was driving my car back to the showroom it had been rear-ended by another vehicle on the motorway.

He said the damage is "not so bad" and that they can repair it to "new" specification. My question is, after all the hassle I have had with this car, can I reject it?

Keith Lamb

What Car? says…

Although your poor buying experience has been compounded by an unfortunate accident, there are only three reasons a car can be rejected under the Consumer Rights Act 2015: if it’s not of satisfactory quality, is not fit for purpose or is not as it was described. 

We doubt the incorrect sat-nav and missing second key would be viewed as serious enough problems to warrant rejection – unless there is a valid reason why you are not able to use a car with a smartphone-based sat-nav. 

Examples of when you’d be entitled to reject include being given one that is not permitted to tow a caravan when you had specifically stated that as its intended purpose; or being given a three-door, manual car rather than a five-door with an automatic ‘box. Faulty cars can also be rejected, but only if the problem is serious, such as one that makes the car undriveable. 

So, although you’ve not been treated well, we don’t feel you have grounds to reject the car. We’d suggest you tell the dealership it needs to pay for a replacement sat-nav, and request a significant goodwill gesture, such as some free servicing, for example, to offset the issues.

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