Every year around this time friends and family members who claim to have the inside track into buying cars will tell you that your preferred dealer should be able to allow you buy today, license next year. The ‘bonus’ they say is, is that you get a 2015 registered car instead of a late 2014 model.
Chad Smith, Dealer Principal of CMH Midrand explains, â€œThere is one major problem with this process. It is in fact illegal.â€
â€œFirstly, when a customer signs an undertaking with the bank, the dealer agrees with the bank that the vehicle will not leave the premises until such time as it is duly registered. In the case of the above, if you the customer to do take the car (unregistered) and have an accident the bank will hold the dealer accountable for the loss. Dealer loses.â€ Smith continues.
â€œSecondly, should the dealers put a permit on the vehicle and only submit the papers to the licensing department next year, in theory this is fine â€“ the vehicle will be registered as a 2015 vehicle. However, and this where you need to take note, should you have an accident in their car and someone in the accident is killed, the dealership and you will have committed fraud as the papers were not duly submitted and the car was in fact not licensed. Dealer and customer lose.â€
â€œThe biggest concern is that this will then be treated as a criminal case for all involved, dealer principal and the customer.â€ Chad emphasises.
So in the end, this practice is illegal. And while the age of a car is taken into consideration when selling it on, itâ€™s not so much the age that plays the biggest determining factor but rather the mileage. So play it safe, register your car and look out for dealers wanting to tell you otherwise.