Used sports cars open to scams

Second-hand high-performance cars are increasingly becoming the focus of fraudsters, motorists are being warned.

Used high-performance models often attract scammers because of their higher values, while their rarity means vehicles that have been in a collision are sometimes illegally returned to the market, according to vehicle history check provider HPI.

Nick Lindsay, director of HPI, said: "Some buyers could be tempted by the thrill of the drive to rush into a purchase without checking the vehicle's history, especially if they spot a bargain.

"That could be a costly mistake as these vehicles are just as - if not more - vulnerable to the scams committed by criminals and unscrupulous sellers. Indeed, first impressions could definitely catch buyers out with the hidden dangers, such as insurance write-off damage or clocking, being missed unless an HPI Check is carried out."

He warned buyers that if a deal looks too good to be 1, it probably is, adding though vehicles might look good on the outside, they could easily hide a history that leaves them a danger on the roads.

Buyers should be particularly wary of vehicles advertised overseas where the seller requests money up front for any costs, and says HPI, always get a receipt for any deposit.

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