Used car quits, buyer takes car lot to court
ZACHARY - If a deal sounds too good to be true, it probably is. It's a hard lesson that plenty of people learn when they buy a car from a used car lot and these types of calls are frequently made to 2 On Your Side.
The story often involves a vehicle that worked well for a couple of days and then suddenly stopped working. Sherry T. Johnson contacted 2 On Your Side after she says it happened to her.
In January, Johnson went looking for a new car to help with her commute. Her commute consisted of a six-mile walk to work and a six-mile walk home from work. She says someone recommended she shop for a used vehicle at Unique Autos in Zachary.
Johnson took a 2006 Lincoln Zephyr for a test drive and says it drove just fine. Unique Autos tells 2 On Your Side the car she test drove and soon after purchased, was a repossessed vehicle. Johnson spent $2,000 on the car and agreed to purchase it "as is" after her mechanic gave it a look over. Two days later, she says the oil light went on and it ran out of gas. She had it towed to a mechanic only to learn her new investment would cost her a lot more. She was told by a mechanic that the car needed a new motor.
"That's why they sold it to me at the price they sold it to me," said Johnson. "I didn't know. I didn't pay attention to it."
Unique Autos says Johnson caused her own demise to her motor because it was overfilled with oil. When Unique Autos attempted to rectify the situation, it says Johnson took it upon herself to fix the situation. It didn't find out what happened until later and says there never was an oil leak, it was overfilled.
Johnson decided to make calls to the Louisiana Used Motor Vehicle Commission, the Better Business Bureau and took a trip downtown.
"I went to small claims court and filed a suit against Unique Autos," she said.
The auto shop says Johnson ended up filing in the wrong court and to save them both money agreed to settle out of court for $750. While that didn't make Johnson whole, it helped with paying for part of the new motor.
Unique Autos says it had other vehicles to offer her, but Johnson was unable to get financed on those options.