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Ben Jones
Ben Jones, UK Lawyer
Category: Law
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Experience:  Qualified Solicitor - Please start your question with 'For Ben Jones'
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Dear Sir/Madam, I own a BMW F800 ST motorcycle which I bought

Resolved Question:

Dear Sir/Madam,
I own a BMW F800 ST motorcycle which I bought from a local BMW dealer in September 2007 and have had it regularly serviced by the dealer since new. I recently sold it on eBay for £3000 but when the winner of the auction turned up, who happened to be a motorcycle dealer, he refused to pay for the bike on the grounds that it was not as advertised and had, in his view, a “piston slap” problem. (This is premature wear of the piston and bores of the engine). I took it to my BMW dealer the next day to confirm or otherwise and they stated verbally that, whilst the engine was making more noise than a new bike, it was perfectly serviceable and it was fair to describe the bike as in “good condition” for its age and mileage (22,500 miles). However, they admitted that there were some engine problems with early versions of my bike and offered to raise the issue with BMW (UK). After a few days BMW (UK) came back with a “good will” offer to cover 80% of the parts for repairing my engine, leaving me with the prospect of paying around £2000 for the remaining 20% of the parts and labour. I told them that this was not acceptable to me and I phoned BMW Customer Service direct yesterday but they said they would not improve on their “good will” offer.
I have done some research on the BMW Forums on the internet and it appears there was a problem with the early versions of my bike and the piston design was subsequently changed around 2008/9. In my view my bike should have been recalled, as it has been for a number of smaller issues over the last 6 years, as the engine is clearly suffering from premature wear and is not fit for purpose as it will fail much earlier in the bike’s life than it should.
I consider BMW should bear the full cost of repairing my bike. Am I right? If so, what should my next steps be please?
Many thanks for your help.
Yours sincerely,

Murray Trantor
Submitted: 3 years ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Ben Jones replied 3 years ago.

Ben Jones :

Hello, my name is XXXXX XXXXX it is my pleasure to assist you with your question today.

Ben Jones :

Is the issue with the manufacture or the repairs that have been undertaken since purchase?

Customer:

The issue stems from what I believe was a design fault in the early engines. I've always been very satisfied with the local dealer.

Ben Jones :

You will not have any rights against the manufacturer as your contract would have been with the dealer that sold you the bike. Any rights against the manufacturer would have applied under a warranty that they had offered, which is likely to have expired by now anyway.


 


In terms of your rights against the dealer, then when a consumer makes a purchase from a business seller, they will have certain 'statutory' rights under the Sale of Goods Act 1979 and the Sale and Supply of Goods to Consumers Regulations 2002.


 


The law states that the goods must be of satisfactory quality, as described and fit for purpose. If they are not, you will have certain legal remedies against the seller. The only time action can be taken against the manufacturer is under a manufacturer's warranty or guarantee. There is no protection against fair wear and tear, misuse or accidental damage, faults that were pointed out at the time of sale or if you change your mind and no longer want the goods.


 


If the goods are not as described, of satisfactory quality or fit for purpose, you have the following rights:


 


1. Reject the goods and request a refund - this is only possible if the rejection occurs within a 'reasonable time'. This period depends on the circumstances, although it is generally accepted to be within the first month after purchase, so must not be delayed.


 


2. Ask for a repair or replacement – if you are too late to reject the goods, you can ask the seller for a repair or replacement without causing any significant inconvenience.


 


The problem is that whilst you could have considered pursuing them for the costs of the repair or to try and get a replacement, you would be too late to do so now. If they refuse to assist you, then the only option for you would have been to take them to court to seek compensation for any losses suffered. However, there I a time limit of 6 years to make such a claim and if you bought the bike in Sep 2007, the time limit to claim would have been in Sep 2013, which has already passed so you would be time barred from pursuing a legal claim in the circumstances. Therefore, your best option is to continue negotiating and try to improve the offer they have made as you cannot legally force them to improve that.

Ben Jones :

Please let me know if this has answered your original question or if you need me to clarify anything else for you in relation to this? Thanks

Customer:

Dear Ben, What is my best negotiation point to use againgst either the manufacturer or the dealer?

Ben Jones :

against the manufacturer - this is really a goodwill on their part as they have no legal obligation to resolve this for you so be realistic with what you have been offered and remember that they could easily withdraw their offer at any time

Against the dealer - this comes own to the motorcycle not being of satisfactory quality and not meeting the requirements expected under the Sale of Goods Act, but as mentioned you would be out of time to pursue them if they failed to agree on assisting you

Ben Jones :

Please let me know if you need me to clarify anything further for you?

Customer:

Dear Ben,

Customer:

Dear Ben, That's fine. Many thanks for your help. I'll leave a positive review. Kind regards, Murray

Ben Jones :

You are most welcome and all the best

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