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Jo C.
Jo C., Barrister
Category: Law
Satisfied Customers: 71048
Experience:  Over 5 years in practice
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My Land Rover Discovery developed a coolant leak at 47000miles

Customer Question

My Land Rover Discovery developed a coolant leak at 47000miles 18 months ago and has just had both the cylinder heads removed and skimmed to effect a repair, engine rebuilt etc. This has cost £4000, mileage now 60000. The dealership has contacted LRover Uk who say they will not contribute to this cost but will offer £2000 against a new car. I would prefer the former, have said so and emailed the CEO of Jaguar Landrover to this effect. No reply yet.

If they refuse do I have any recourse under the Sales of Goods Act or any other Consumer Protection legislation e.g. not fit for purpose. I would expect this engine to be good for over 300000 miles
Thank you
Peter Naylor
Submitted: 4 years ago.
Category: Law
Expert:  Jo C. replied 4 years ago.

Thank you for your question . My name is XXXXX XXXXX I will try to help with this.

In order to give you an answer tailored to your circumstances, I will just need to ask you some preliminary questions so that I can consider your position from all angles.

Did you buy it new?

Does it have a warranty?
Customer: replied 4 years ago.


Yes I bought it new at end June 2007 and before that bought another Landrover , Td5, from the same dealership in 2001. Both cars have been servcies/repaired at the same dealership.


There was a 12 months warranty, starting 06/2007, but I would argue that at this relatively low mileage there should not be a problem. This is a unique type of fault, rare and the dealership said it was a daunting repair. I saw the engine in bits in their workshop, am a chartered engineer, and would agree with that. It is clearly a manufacturing fault in the engine cylonder heads that has taken it time to come into effect.

Expert:  Jo C. replied 4 years ago.

What date did you buy in June 2007 please? I know its hard to ascertain but it might mean you are time barred.
Customer: replied 4 years ago.



The order was placed on 20th June 2007 and registered on 29th June 2007. i.e. 6 years ago exactly today - a coincidence. I have the docs. to prove this


The fault i.e.leak was first noticed at New Year 2012


Why would I be time barred - from what? please?

Expert:  Jo C. replied 4 years ago.

Thanks for the information.

Unfortunately you are out of time to claim against the sellers under the SGA. The limitation act and the EU directive gives you 6 years. I realise that isn't your intention at the moment but you had a much stronger claim against them.

Regrettably you are also out of time to claim against the manufacturer in negligence as the limitation act also gives you six years and the date of manufacture must have been before the date of purchase.

You could try to claim on the basis of the latent damages legislation by arguing that the fault has only recently become apparent to you by reason of the recent discovery. That is the only way this can be run at court.

There is an application you can make to extend time under the limitation act but its not the best argument here.

In truth if you have had this vehicle six years then even with low mileage they are likely to contest any claim. It is a small claims court sum so it would be cheap to issue. There is a risk that a court could say that this is fair wear and tear I'm afraid.

Hope this helps. Please let me know if you need more information.
Customer: replied 4 years ago.



I do not understand the point in your first para. above. The 6 years period only expires today and the car was ordered and registered within that period. Furthermore the dealership first tested for leaks in November 2012 i.e. 7 months ago and the repair work was executed within that period too being completed this week.


Please explain this disparity - have you fully understood the question?. I can understand your point about the manufacturer but in this case the engine is a Ford engine and Ford owned Jaguar Landorver until they were taken over by Tata group.


I feel certain that any self-respecting chartered engineer would not argue this was a case of fair wear and tear - tyres yes, engines no.

Expert:  Jo C. replied 4 years ago.
Time runs from the date of the wrongful act - the date of negligent manufacture or sale with faults.

The date you discover the faults is a non issue unless you can convince a court that latent damages apply which is unlikely I'm afraid
Customer: replied 4 years ago.



You say time runs from the "sale with faults"- the sale was within the 6 year period unless you can define the point of sale outside this period - if so how do your each such a conclusion

Expert:  Jo C. replied 4 years ago.
But unless you issue today you are out of time. Today is the 29 th.I suppose you could do that but then you would be vulnerable to arguments that you hadn't properly negotiated before issuing
Customer: replied 4 years ago.



Thank you. Clearly the UK doesn't work over weekends [ are you in the USA?] so I take your point, and I don't know what would be considered as a "proper negotiation" at law.

Just to recap they have already offered 50% of the repair cost [£2000]against a new car with a request from me to reconsider that and put this in the repair pot - to the CEO. I can't go higher than that and he has not replied yet. Perhaps he didn;t do so deliberately ??


If this does boil down to a legal definition of it being Saturday today and I am time barred, in effect because of the weekend, perhaps the law should be redrafted in favour of the consumer.


Do let me know what you think on this one - thank you again.

Expert:  Jo C. replied 4 years ago.
I'm in the uk

The issue isn't that its Saturday. Actually you could still issue online today.

The issue is that then they could say you haven't negotiated properly.

Thats quite apart form the substantive issue if this vehicle lasting 5 and a half years or thereabouts before the fault.