Used Car Buyer's Guide

Serving Los Angeles, Riverside, Ventura, San Bernardino Counties & Nearby Areas of California

The FTC’s Used Car Rule requires dealers to include a Buyers Guide with every used motor vehicle they sell, including demonstrators, program cars, trucks and vans. Demonstrators are new vehicles that haven’t been leased, owned, or used as a rental by a consumer but have been driven by staff at a dealership. Program cars are current year model vehicles that have low mileage and were returned to the dealer from short-term rentals or leases. Buyers Guides are not required to be posted on some recreational vehicles or motorcycles, and any dealer that sells less than six vehicles annually.

The Buyers Guide must inform you:

  • If the vehicle being purchased is being sold with a warranty or “as is”;
  • Details regarding the major electrical and mechanical systems on the vehicle, including what major problems you should watch for;
  • What repair cost percentage the dealer will pay under the warranty;
  • That spoken promises between you and the dealer can be hard to enforce;
  • That any promises by the dealer should be in writing;
  • That you should have the vehicle inspected by an independent mechanic before you purchase the vehicle; and
  • That you should keep the Buyers Guide after the sale for reference.

When you are purchasing a used vehicle from a dealer, make sure you receive a Buyers Guide. It must show any changes that you and the dealer negotiated regarding the vehicle’s warranty. The Guide also becomes part of the sales contract and supersedes any contrary provisions. For instance, if the Guide states that the vehicle comes with a warranty, but the contract the dealer is offering states that the vehicle is being sold “as is,” the dealer must provide you with the warranty the Guide describes.

If you live in California and you are thinking of buying a used vehicle, it would be a good idea to read the Consumer’s Guide to Buying a Used Car in California by Howard D. Silver before visiting a used car dealership. Mr. Silver has years of experience representing people who bought a lemon vehicle from a used car dealer. To find out how he can help you, call (855) 341-2611 today.


Posted Date: 
Wednesday, February 18, 2015