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Don’t buy from South coast Jap Autos


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Despite my Vellfire looking great externally I’ve discovered loads of problems after driving away from SW Jap Autos Southhampton. 
 

Told it was under sealed - No

upon private inspection - would fail or show advisories on rear bushes, rear shocks, split left windscreen blade, rear number plate bulb.
 

Intermediate steering rack had to be replaced, electric steering damper needs replacing, rear screen wash motor needs replacing, rear spoiler needs respaying due to paint fatigue. Milage 6 months ago upon MOT was more than mileage upon collection with no advisories., tyres bald upon collection. 
 

I travelled 120 miles to collect being told vehicles are ready to drive away. Despite being told we’re happy to fix the problems my argument is that why was it in this condition and you were happy for me to drive away but they have never responded to that question only saying we’re happy to fix it. 
 

steer clear. 

 



 


 

 

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Urrgh that's not great.  It's obviously not uncommon for these cars to have their niggles (they of course aren't new) but that all sounds rather unacceptable to me.

 

I do guess it's a bit of a case of buyer beware.....when I purchased ours (albeit privately) I really didn't check it over carefully enough and came to learn not long after the radiator was shot and had to be replaced at considerable cost.  That said and done I don't think the sellers knew/realised it was done and my own fault for not being more thorough.  Whilst it pays to still be cautious when buying a car through a dealer, you don't expect this kind of thing (not being undersealed when it's part of the sale, bald tyres etc).

 

In fairness consumer rights would allow you to reject the vehicle and receive your money back within first 14 days I'm pretty sure but expect that moment has passed.  Do you have a warranty with it?  Certainly given the level of issues the dealer should be working with you to addresses (either sorting themselves, or contributing/paying for the repairs to cover your costs).

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11 hours ago, Peterm69uk said:

Despite my Vellfire looking great externally I’ve discovered loads of problems after driving away from SW Jap Autos Southampton. 
 

Told it was under sealed - No

upon private inspection - would fail or show advisories on rear bushes, rear shocks, split left windscreen blade, rear number plate bulb.
 

Intermediate steering rack had to be replaced, electric steering damper needs replacing, rear screen wash motor needs replacing, rear spoiler needs respraying due to paint fatigue. Mileage 6 months ago upon MOT was more than mileage upon collection with no advisories., tyres bald upon collection. 
 

I travelled 120 miles to collect being told vehicles are ready to drive away. Despite being told we’re happy to fix the problems my argument is that why was it in this condition and you were happy for me to drive away but they have never responded to that question only saying we’re happy to fix it. 
 

steer clear. 

 



 


 

 

 

So sorry to hear about your situation.

 

How long ago did you purchase the van ?

What was, is, the warranty ?

 

I would be thinking about a chat with Trading Standards.

 

Maybe a chat with DVLA regarding the apparent clocking.

 

Swapping tyres after a sale is just despicable.

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Their web site asserts they are AA approved.

 

I would give the AA a call.

 

I seem to remember these guys are affiliated with another company that I know is (or was) very good.

I'll contact them and check the affiliation. Perhaps they will help.

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2 hours ago, Rojie said:

 

So sorry to hear about your situation.

 

How long ago did you purchase the van ?

What was, is, the warranty ?

 

I would be thinking about a chat with Trading Standards.

 

Maybe a chat with DVLA regarding the apparent clocking.

 

Swapping tyres after a sale is just despicable.

 

Firstly I love the van despite the problems 👍🏻

 

So yes I have a 2 year warranty with a third party up to the value of £2000, the intermediate steering rack is being replaced under warranty, although I've still not been reimbursed for that yet. The van was purchased in Feb and I didn't really drive it for a month as was very busy with work but had it inspected when the knocking noise was getting worse.

 

I was told when the car was up on the car lift that the bushes were pretty bad, how bad I asked, bad enough to cover them in black mastic to hide how bad they are. Because I was told it may not be an MOT fail, depends on the guy on the day, he said they should have been an advisory on the MOT, same with the rear shocks. So out my own money I had these changed as I thought I'm not taking it back to this company as they dodgy. Upon the bushes and shocks being changed I had a full health check and they picked up the other issues, wiper, washer motor and the knocking from the front steering column which is still not solved as I need the steering damper changed.

 

They replaced all 4 tyres but the question was asked why are they bald if it passed the MOT, they said they're not the original wheels 🤷 I contacted them telling them I wasn't happy and with the MOT discrepancy and bald tyres, has the cars milage been tampered with, no they said, its how the MOT centre does the KM to MPH conversion 🤔

 

With all this going on I was exchanging messages with the company but getting messages back like, there's no need to change the intermediate steering rack as there's a work-about, bring it back to us 🤔 told me to get the washer motor repaired through the warranty which brings me to my next point.

 

I told them I shouldn't be using the warranty to repair the car which should have been in a fit state driving away but they would never acknowledge my point and it was only when I left negative feedback on a review site, which they said they had seen, that the wanted to rectify the problems.

 

I told them the amount I paid for the car and all the repairs that need doing it was mis-sold and was happy to take a partial refund and I'd be happy but again the never replied to that comment.

 

 I want nothing to do with the company now.

 

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2 hours ago, pipsyp said:

Urrgh that's not great.  It's obviously not uncommon for these cars to have their niggles (they of course aren't new) but that all sounds rather unacceptable to me.

 

I do guess it's a bit of a case of buyer beware.....when I purchased ours (albeit privately) I really didn't check it over carefully enough and came to learn not long after the radiator was shot and had to be replaced at considerable cost.  That said and done I don't think the sellers knew/realised it was done and my own fault for not being more thorough.  Whilst it pays to still be cautious when buying a car through a dealer, you don't expect this kind of thing (not being undersealed when it's part of the sale, bald tyres etc).

 

In fairness consumer rights would allow you to reject the vehicle and receive your money back within first 14 days I'm pretty sure but expect that moment has passed.  Do you have a warranty with it?  Certainly given the level of issues the dealer should be working with you to addresses (either sorting themselves, or contributing/paying for the repairs to cover your costs).

 

It's a shame I didn't drive it for nearly a month, I'd have noticed the problems sooner but kind of put me off knowing things had been hidden and the milage discrepancy, just thought, yep you've been had, so very reluctant to go back to them.

 

Despite the problems I still love it but think its been clocked, it's done 55000, would you expect bushes/shocks/steering rack to be in those conditions? I wouldn't know as I'm not a car guy, very rarely lift the lid on the engine, if ever 🤣

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3 hours ago, Rojie said:

Their web site asserts they are AA approved.

 

I would give the AA a call.

 

I seem to remember these guys are affiliated with another company that I know is (or was) very good.

I'll contact them and check the affiliation. Perhaps they will help.

I may do that 👍🏻

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3 hours ago, Peterm69uk said:

 

It's a shame I didn't drive it for nearly a month, I'd have noticed the problems sooner but kind of put me off knowing things had been hidden and the milage discrepancy, just thought, yep you've been had, so very reluctant to go back to them.

 

Despite the problems I still love it but think its been clocked, it's done 55000, would you expect bushes/shocks/steering rack to be in those conditions? I wouldn't know as I'm not a car guy, very rarely lift the lid on the engine, if ever 🤣

Alot of places now convert the Speedo and odo to miles (as it's possible with the right kit).

 

If they are worth their salts they should be able to provide some form of proof of mileage (BIMTA certificate) that confirms the import mileage and what if converts to in miles (and what the odo should have read.

 

I think it's highly unlikely that it's been clocked, the wear and tear may well just be a sign of how it was used/driven in it's native Japan.  These things of course don't last forever and can fail.

 

Still think you should speak to them and see what they will do to rectify the issues as if they care one cent about their reputation I am sure they'll do their bit to put things right.  Failing that as Roger mentioned you could take it to Trading Standards with a view to them providing pressure to resolve the issues/facilitate a refund.

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33 minutes ago, pipsyp said:

Alot of places now convert the Speedo and odo to miles (as it's possible with the right kit).

 

If they are worth their salts they should be able to provide some form of proof of mileage (BIMTA certificate) that confirms the import mileage and what if converts to in miles (and what the odo should have read.

 

I think it's highly unlikely that it's been clocked, the wear and tear may well just be a sign of how it was used/driven in it's native Japan.  These things of course don't last forever and can fail.

 

Still think you should speak to them and see what they will do to rectify the issues as if they care one cent about their reputation I am sure they'll do their bit to put things right.  Failing that as Roger mentioned you could take it to Trading Standards with a view to them providing pressure to resolve the issues/facilitate a refund.

 

Japanese Auction sheets states 89640km - 55699 miles, MOT states 55722 but when I picked it up milage was approx 300 miles lower 6 months after the MOT with no advisories, what's it done in 6 months? be interested to read your opinion, or am I just being paranoid?

 

Pete

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5 minutes ago, Peterm69uk said:

 

Japanese Auction sheets states 89640km - 55699 miles, MOT states 55722 but when I picked it up milage was approx 300 miles lower 6 months after the MOT with no advisories, what's it done in 6 months? be interested to read your opinion, or am I just being paranoid?

 

Pete

Really hard to say Pete.  MOT stations do occasionally muck up the mileage..simply get it wrong when they type it in.

 

Alternatively may be that it was MOT'd prior to the mileage being changed to miles and the garage asked the MOT station to convert kms to miles and they got the calc slightly wrong?

 

For the sake of a few hundred miles honestly I would not worry about it, particularly given if the import mileage Kms to miles tallies.

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4 minutes ago, pipsyp said:

Really hard to say Pete.  MOT stations do occasionally muck up the mileage..simply get it wrong when they type it in.

 

Alternatively may be that it was MOT'd prior to the mileage being changed to miles and the garage asked the MOT station to convert kms to miles and they got the calc slightly wrong?

 

For the sake of a few hundred miles honestly I would not worry about it, particularly given if the import mileage Kms to miles tallies.

Appreciate your opinion 👍🏼

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49 minutes ago, Peterm69uk said:

Appreciate your opinion 👍🏼

No worries chap, horrible when youve spent hard earned money on something nice and it's not what you expected it to be.  It's not made any easier by these things, despite their popularity/increasing numbers in the UK being still relatively hard to source parts for at reasonable costs (and quickly).

 

I'm currently awaiting a wing mirror glass turning up from Japan......as it's not the sort of thing you can just go grab at a motor factors or Halfolds.....that was nearly 80 quid with freight......that said Toyota UK were selling one on line and it was nearly 160!  I was therefore happy to wait!

 

Definitely do reach out to the seller though, tell them how it is from your perspective and see what they do for you, you might be pleasantly surprised.  Definitely think they deserve at least one opportunity to make things good.  Failing that just go hard on them, perhaps with Trading Standards involvement and see if they can support you with getting the right outcome or worst case rejecting the vehicle on the basis it's missold and get your money back.

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I know it won't help you now, but for the benefit of other prospective owners, I always recommend an independent inspection before purchase

I used the AA or RAC. The written inspection was very thorough.

 

It cost about 300 UKP and It didn't find any issues, and I haven't found any since either.

Well worth the cost for the reassurance I received, or the bargaining power the report can provide.

 

When the odometer is altered from Km to miles, there is an opportunity for deliberate transposition errors !

 

How do you detect this ?

The (export) Auction Sheet; you must get a copy. No auction sheet; walk away.

 

If the odometer is falsified before auction you will never know; but afterwards, you definitely will from the km at export auction.

 

Regarding undersealing, a definite must for the UK.

Regarding the rear bushes. A common problem.

Mine were redone before purchase at about the same mileage as yours.

Preventative or required maintenance ? I don't know, but I know they were done.

I guess the previous use will effect this greatly (rear end loading) ; but you won't know that either.

 

You could also collect all the bills for rectification and open a case in the Small Claims Court.

 

Whatever you do, you will enjoy the vehicle when you have sorted the issues.

 

 

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I'll comment on the bushes . They are a common problem and not so much mileage related as age related . Especially a low mileage vehicle that has sat around a lot . One mot tester may say all is good , another one that they're shot . Also using the vehicle once it's been sat can cause issues with already soft bushes . Not defending the dealer , they clearly aren't doing things the right way 

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