govt mulling 'lemon' law to protect second-hand vehicle buyers

KUALA LUMPUR: Buyers of second -hand vehicles may be protected against buying ‘lemons’ (vehicles in bad condition) soon, with the Domestic Trade and Consumer Affairs Ministry is looking into efforts to improve laws related to the sale and purchase of used vehicles.

Minister Datuk Seri Alexander Nanta Linggi, said this was important as it would protect consumers from becoming victims of fraud or having to bear losses when buying used vehicles.

He said based on statistics, from January to August this year, a total of 1,126 cases related to the sale and purchase of used vehicles were recorded by the Tribunal for Consumer Claims.

“As proposed by the consumer associations including FMCCAM (Federation of Motor and Credit Companies Associations Malaysia) the ministry should enhance the existing legislations including to introduce a lemon law.

“At the ministry level we have discussed (lemon law) and we are gathering industry players’ input,” he told a press conference after officiating at the launch of the AutoGen Plus extended warranty programme for used car owners here today.

A lemon law protects consumers who buy products that have a lifespan of more than six months such as cars, to address the issue of existing damage as well as the possibility of an accident and to make a claim for the defective product.

Commenting on the extended warranty programme, Nanta said the ministry supports any industry player who is prepared to improve the used car sector, especially in terms of consumer protection.

As such, he lauded the move to introduce the eAutoGen’s extended warranty programme.

“The programme covers two key areas which is the visibility of the used-car condition through inspection and ensuring the car is maintained and, the most important value-added point, the assistance to repair for a major breakdown involving transmission and engine,” he said.

Nanta pointed out that the effort would help boost domestic trade and provide better consumer protection, thus increasing trust, safety and confidence between buyers and sellers.

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