Autotrader Q&A – Recalls, Hybrids, the VAT Rise & the 60 Plate

I sat in on a Twitter Q&A (#AskAT) with Auto Trader Used Car Editor Stuart Milne this morning and picked up some interesting tips and information that answers some questions I received recently. Here goes – in no particular order.


Q: Are recalls always dangerous problems & is the fix free?

Autotrader: Not always; they’re usually safety related, but not always dangerous – I had a car recalled for a new radiator cap!

(I can add that manufacturer recalls are normally fixed for free)

Q: If you are the second owner (e.g. you buy a nearly new car) how will you know about recalls?

Autotrader: Take a look at – you can search for recalls affecting the model you’re buying (the link to vehicle recalls is on the right under “Do It Online”)


Q: I’m wondering about buying a hybrid but not sure whether to wait a bit longer for newer models/more choice.

Autotrader: They’re getting better all the time. Peugeot 3008 diesel electric hybrid will launch soon – looks very interesting – see here for more details:

VAT Rise & Used Car Prices

Q: One of my readers asked whether car dealers will pass on the VAT rise in the new year or absorb it with discounts?

Autotrader: More on this at – I’d expect used cars to increase in price slightly.

(It’s worth having a read of the link – but the main point is that VAT is charged when a new car is delivered, not when it is ordered – so if you order a new car before the VAT rise but it isn’t delivered until after the VAT rise in the new year, then you wil pay 20% VAT anyway…) On top of this, many manufacturers have long delivery times at the moment.

The 60 Plate

Q: Is it too late to get a 60 plate car on 1st September?

Autotrader: Any new car ordered now won’t be delivered for a few weeks, but its worth talking asking dealers about it.

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