True Car Buying Stories

"...he could have been driving around in a death trap!!" Letter we received from Helen March 2006, recalls her experiences of an HPI Check:

"...also your HPI car checks are fantastic, found out the 'to good to be true car' I put a deposit on yesterday was a write off 10 months ago, seller lied to me about this history, thanks for saving me a packet and possibly my 17yr old sons life, he could have been driving around in a death trap!!"


"I was shocked to discover that the Citroen Saxo had an unpaid loan still owing to the finance company." HPI customer 'A' from Bristol, recalls his experiences of an HPI Check:

"My wife found the perfect car for our daughter using an Intranet service at work. We contacted the vendor and were pleased to discover the 'R' reg Citroen Saxo was for sale at a reasonable price. As the car was located in York, we decided to do an HPI Check before travelling the long distance to view the vehicle. Working in the trade, I was aware of car crime and wanted to make sure that the vehicle was legal. Fortunately, taking full advantage of the HPI service, we discovered the information relating to the outstanding car finance agreement. Without HPI, my wife and I may have bought the Saxo only to discover that we did not legitimately own it. As it was, we came to a mutual agreement with the vendor and the finance house and completed the sale."

"I discovered that the MOT certificate had been stolen and the van had undergone a colour change." HPI customer 'B' from Weston-Super-Mare explains:

"I was trying to help my colleague buy a Transit van for his business. We went to view a vehicle that one of his friends was selling and, after a thorough inspection, we agreed that it looked good enough to buy. I asked to see the log book and to my surprise the vendor told us he didn't have it! Instead he produced a transfer that I recognised to be part of the V5. Having been a bank manager for many years, I am naturally suspicious and decided against buying the van. To satisfy my curiosity, I later called the police and they advised me to contact HPI and conduct a full HPI vehicle identity check to discover the true status of the van. I found out that the vehicle had been involved in an accident and had undergone a colour change. I also discovered that the MOT certificate had been stolen and therefore the vehicle may not be roadworthy. HPI advised me not to go ahead with the purchase."

"The V5 was one of a batch that had been stolen from the DVLA. Even worse, the car was a ringer." HPI customer 'D' from Darlington recalls how he avoided being fooled by false documents:

"I had advertised my car for sale and a potential buyer contacted me offering a Land Rover Freelander in exchange. I was interested in the proposition and agreed to meet him outside my home. I had a look at the Freelander and was impressed by its good condition and took it for a test drive. Pleased with the results, I asked to see all the documentation including the MOT certificate and the V5 registration document. For some reason my suspicions were aroused and I decided to call HPI to check the car registration, who confirmed that the V5 was one of a batch that had been stolen from the DVLA. Even worse, the car was a ringer - its identity had been changed to match that of a legitimate vehicle - and the stolen V5 was being used as part of the fraud."

"It was almost certain that the car had been 'clocked' by at least 8,000 miles." HPI customer 'E' from Hampshire tells of his relief that he had an HPI Check done:

"With a budget of £5,000, I read through various magazines looking for my ideal car. I saw one in particular that I really liked and went to the dealer to view it. It was here that I saw another car on the forecourt that really took my fancy, a Mercedes C Class. I decided that although the cost was way outside my original budget, at £9,000, this was the car for me. The mileage was very low compared to the age of the car and as there were no past MOT documents to help verify the actual mileage, I conducted an HPI Check. I'm so glad I did because HPI confirmed there was a mileage discrepancy. Naturally, I didn't buy the car - it was just too risky! I would definitely recommend carrying out an HPI vehicle data check to anyone who is looking to buy a used car."

If you have an interesting vehicle buying story that may help warn others send it in and we may publish it!