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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Help, husband and I bought a 97 GTS blue/white with 15,000 miles on it 2 weeks ago. (Mods....flywheel, headers, K & N). Heres the problem. 1 week after we bought it the speedometer and odometer stopped working. We took it to a Viper tech who looked at the PCM and said the car has 30,000 miles on it......the car was advertised as 15K and we were verbally told 15K....

What would you do? Any input would be helpful.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Well, it was a private seller, but it was on consignment with a guy who sells vipers on the side. I seriously don't think the consignment guy knew at all. We did do a carfax and checked to make sure all the recalls, etc had been done.
 

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This is from the Dept.of Justice:


Odometer fraud occurs when illegal changes are made to the mileage shown on a used vehicle's title and odometer. This is usually done to mask high mileage on late model used cars.

Odometer fraud is a serious threat to used car buyers that can cost thousands of dollars in frustrating breakdowns and repairs. When increased finance, insurance and repair costs are added, the loss to a consumer who purchases a vehicle with an altered odometer is considerable.

The very nature of the used car market makes it a prime target for fraud. The vehicle can change hands several times before reaching the used car lot and fraud can happen at almost any step in the process. Millions of vehicles receive new titles each year as they are sold at auction to wholesalers and dealers. Unscrupulous operators often commit fraud by recording lower mileage on the new title application, changing the odometer reading and cleaning vehicles so that their appearance matches the lower mileage reading.

In many cases, the dealer selling the vehicle to the consumer may not even be aware that the odometer was altered by a wholesaler or at the auction.

How can I identify odometer fraud?

Before purchasing a used car, take it to a reputable mechanic for an inspection. Ask if the wear on the car looks the same as the miles on the odometer. A mechanic can often spot telltale signs of excessive mileage.

The mechanic should also compare the vehicle identification number on the body of the car with that on the engine, and check the serial numbers of engine and other replacement parts against a replacement parts order book.

Other telltale signs of odometer tampering include:

Numbers on the odometer look misaligned, or the odometer does not work.

Missing screws or loose parts on the dashboard, indicating the odometer has been dissembled.

Non-original or mismatched tires on cars with odometer readings under 30,000 miles.

Old dated oil change stickers, repair orders or inspection certificates showing mileage inconsistent with the current readings.

A recent title, a title stamped "duplicate" or a title issued in another state.

Are there any laws that protect me against odometer fraud?

Yes. In 1972 Congress passed the Motor Vehicle Information and Cost Savings Act, popularly known as the Odometer Act, which may be found at 49 U.S.C. 32702. Under the federal Odometer Act it is unlawful to:

Advertise for sale, sell, use, install, or have installed, a device that makes an odometer register a mileage different from the mileage the vehicle was driven;


Disconnect, reset, alter, or have disconnected, reset, or altered, an odometer intending to change the mileage registered by the odometer;


With the intent to defraud, operate a motor vehicle on a street, road or highway, if the person knows that the odometer of the vehicle is disconnected or not operating; or


Conspire with others to violate the odometer law.

In addition to prohibiting odometer tampering, the law requires all sellers of used vehicles - including private individuals and those who transfer the car's ownership by means of a gift - to certify in writing that to the best of their knowledge the odometer reading is accurate.

Protect yourself. Take the car's serial or vehicle identification number (VIN) and the odometer reading. Then get a list of the previous owners from the Division of Motor Vehicle's Office. A few phone calls to previous owners can help you discover if the odometer reading is correct. Buy only from dealers who keep mileage records dating to the initial purchase of the vehicle. Do your math: a vehicle owner on average racks up between 12,000 to 15,000 miles per year. If the mileage seems too low to be true, be sure to check out the car's history.

What should I do if I have reason to believe that I have been a victim of odometer fraud?

Once you suspect that you have been victimized by odometer fraud you should contact an attorney promptly. Provide the attorney whatever evidence you have gathered of the possible odometer fraud. Your attorney will help you determine whether to file a civil lawsuit for damages against the dealer.

You also can contact the following:


The Auto Fraud Section of the Louisiana Department of Justice at 1-800-351-4889.



The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration at: NEF-20, 400 Seventh Street, S.W., Washington, D.C., 20590.



Your local FBI office or the Office of Consumer Litigation in the U.S. Justice Department, 550 11th Street, N.W., Washington, D.C., 2004.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Ok so here is the deal...we paid $44,000 for the car we thought had 15K miles but has 30K. We love the car and we don't want to get our money back but we do feel we should be compensated (monitarily) for him lying. But, if we keep the car and then go to sell it are we gonna be screwed cause of this??
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
I don't wanna bust anybody that could be potentially innocent (the guy who brokered the deal). Here is another twist though...my husband talked to a few viper techs today that said that viper owners are constantly switching out their PCMs. Since only a Dodge dealer can re-program or reset the miles on the PCM, if you buy a PCM from somebody else, the PCM will show the miles that it has on it...so they are telling him that there is no way to know unless the odometer had been rolled back. How the hell are you supposed to know how many miles the car really has on it???? So f'ed up!
 

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Don't assume the PCM mileage is right. PM me and I can put you in touch with a REALLY GOOD Viper tech and he can tell you if relying on the PCM is reasonable - I don't think it is.

So don't go too crazy - it might not be what it seems......
 

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It could have had the PCM swapped, or upgraded, or who knows. I wouldn't get worked up about it unless you know for sure that you've been defrauded - which I doubt you have been because honestly, the effort involved in rolling back the odom from 30k to 15k isn't worth the money difference.

Truth is, 30k is nothing on these cars. I have 30k on mine and its no different today than it was when I got it at 7500 - and thats after adding many track miles. As long as the car has good compression, clutch, tranny feel - just enjoy it (unless of course you are really sure you were mislead, which I'm not sure you were - at least I'd be surprised).

96s and 97s are in enough demand that there's no real reason to tamper with them. Hell, I don't see the point in tampering with any Viper.

Just do what you can, but don't jump to conclusions. Have you asked the original owner about it? I'd start there.
 

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Snake Bitten said:
Name names dammit!!!
:stupid: If you don't want to name the person that consigned it, name the owner. Hell, name someone...What state is this in? city? Give details because if this isn't an isolated incident than other potential buyers have a right to know. Jesus Christ, this is Viper Alley for gods sake, if you can't shit on someone here, where can you? /images/graemlins/smiles
 
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