Tips for preventing kitchen fires
Computer, health, sales firms lead in offering telecommuting jobs

General Motors, dealers agree to let car buyers know about unrepaired safety recalls

Dealer AutosGeneral Motors Co., Jim Koons Management Co., and Lithia Motors have agreed to settle charges they deceptively marketed their used cars when they made claims about their comprehensive inspections.

Many of the cars they advertised as having undergone thorough inspections still had open recalls for safety-related defects, including recalls for defective ignition switches – a fact they didn’t make clear to prospective buyers, the Federal Trade Commission said Thursday.

Dealers aren’t required to – and sometimes can’t – fix manufacturer recalls on the used cars they sell. But if they say they’ve done an extensive inspection on a car, the FTC says they also need to say whether there are still unrepaired recalls.

That way, buyers know to get them fixed, or can decide to buy another car instead, said Amy Hebert, consumer education specialist for the FTC.

Under the settlement, the companies must stop making deceptive claims about their recall repair practices, and must notify recent customers who may have bought a used car subject to a recall.

When you shop for a used car, keep in mind that federal law doesn’t require dealers to fix recalls. The FTC advises consumers to:

  • Ask questions. Ask the dealer if the car you’re considering has a recall, and whether the dealer will fix it before you take the car home.
  • Check for yourself. Take down the VIN number of a car, and enter it at the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s recall look-up website safercar.gov. You also can get information to help you follow up with a manufacturer or dealer about a recall.
  • Check out the vehicle history report. The report will tell you about a car’s title, odometer, theft, or salvage history, and might also provide recall information. Ask your dealer – they’ll often provide them for free. For links to companies that sell the reports, go to vehiclehistory.gov.
Copyright 2016, Rita R. Robison, Consumer Specialist

Comments

Feed You can follow this conversation by subscribing to the comment feed for this post.

Verify your Comment

Previewing your Comment

This is only a preview. Your comment has not yet been posted.

Working...
Your comment could not be posted. Error type:
Your comment has been posted. Post another comment

The letters and numbers you entered did not match the image. Please try again.

As a final step before posting your comment, enter the letters and numbers you see in the image below. This prevents automated programs from posting comments.

Having trouble reading this image? View an alternate.

Working...

Post a comment

Your Information

(Name and email address are required. Email address will not be displayed with the comment.)