In a world where new cars are becoming increasingly expensive and scarce, many consumers are turning to the second-hand car market as their only viable option. However, this surge in demand has also attracted the attention of criminals seeking to exploit unsuspecting buyers. One prevalent tactic they employ is odometer tampering, which involves winding back the mileage on used vehicles to inflate their prices. This unscrupulous practice has seen a shocking 400% increase in recent years, resulting in significant financial losses for unsuspecting purchasers.
Odometer tampering (Mileage Rollback / Odometer Rollback) is a serious issue with real economic consequences. Buyers are being swindled into paying higher prices for used vehicles that have deceptive mileage readings. In a 7 News report, a Subaru XV had 400,000 kilometres rolled back, leading to a sale price of $32,000—an $11,000 increase from its actual value. Such manipulations can have a substantial impact on people’s finances, causing them to suffer genuine losses.
Recognising the need for a solution, Service New South Wales has introduced a new feature on their website and app that empowers buyers to protect themselves against odometer tampering. Before purchasing a used car, buyers can now check the odometer readings recorded by mechanics during the vehicle’s last three registrations. By using this service, they can identify any suspicious spikes or irregularities in mileage that may indicate tampering. This crucial tool will help buyers make informed decisions and avoid falling victim to unscrupulous sellers.
Unfortunately the information provided is limited to information gathered during pink slip inspections which does not apply to vehicles less than 5 years old. So, if your vehicle is less than 5 years old, it is recommended to thoroughly inspect the log book for up to date servicing and avoid cars that do not have log books and service history. The log book contains essential information about the vehicle’s service history, previous owners, and recorded mileage at each service interval.
It is crucial for buyers to be aware of this fraudulent practice and take the necessary steps to protect themselves. By staying vigilant and using available resources, buyers can avoid falling prey to criminals and safeguard their financial well-being buying in the second-hand car market.