Can you return a secondhand car in South Africa?

Yes, as the vehicle buyer, you have the right to return the used car to the dealership within six months – but only under certain conditions, excluding wear and tear. This is referred to as the implied warranty according to the consumer protection act(CPA). In terms Section 56 of the Consumer Protection Act there exists an implied warranty in any transaction or agreement pertaining to the supply of goods to a consumer.

What is Implied warranty?

According to Section 55(2) of the CPA (Consumer Protection Act 68 of 2008), every consumer has the right to acquire items that are of high quality, long-lasting, and defect-free.

You have options under the CPA if your used car does not meet these requirements for quality.

In accordance with Section 56(2) of the CPA, a consumer may return goods to a provider without incurring a fee and at the supplier’s risk and expense within six months after receiving a used car if the car does not meet the standard of quality specified in Section 55. and the provider MUST, UPON THE CONSUMER’S REQUEST, EITHER REPAIR OR REPLACE THE VEHICLE OR REFUND THE CONSUMER.

It is important to note, however, that if a transaction for the sale of goods was completed and the seller duly informed the buyer that the goods are sold subject to certain defects and the buyer expressly or tacitly accepts the goods, the consumer will not be able to rely on the implied warranty later.

mercedes benz parked in a row
Photo by Pixabay

What does the implied warranty entail?

If you receive defective products, you have six months from the date of delivery to return them to the supplier without incurring any penalties, at the supplier’s risk, and expense. The consumer is legally permitted to ask for the items to be fixed, replaced, or refunded.

When a customer returns an item for repair and, three months later, the failure, defect, or unsafe feature is still present or a new failure, defect, or unsafe feature is found, the supplier has two options: either replace the item or give the customer their money back.

What about wear and tear?

white volkswagen beetle coupe parked
Photo by Magda Ehlers

You cannot return a vehicle because of wear and tear. There must be a proven flaw in the vehicle, or the buyer must demonstrate that the vehicle delivered to him was unfit for the purpose for which he purchased it. Examples of wear and tear components include, but are not limited to, brake pads, discs and drums, clutches, sparkplugs, air and fuel filters, and so on.

For the detailed steps to lodge a complaint against a dealership, see our article here:

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *