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What has Honest John been asked this week?

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A dealer bought an old vehicle from me - do I have to refund him after he found rust?

I had an 18 year old campervan up for sale. A dealer inspected it and reduced his offer by £500 because of some bodywork rust, this was agreed. He bought it, then contacted me to say there was more rust than he thought (all visible) and that I should make him a refund to cover the cost of its treatment. He claims my advert, said it was in good condition, which it is for an 18 year old vehicle. What is my responsibility?

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Could you recommend wheels and tyres for a smoother ride on a Volkswagen Golf GTI?

We've now had our new Golf GTI for about a month, it really is terrific, smooth and great fun. But it has one minor issue, we are finding the ride too firm around town, especially on poor surfaces. Can I change the wheels for smaller ones, with perhaps the Michelin Cross Climate tyres (ready for winter) and more kerb protection? It has the standard 18-inch wheels fitted.

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Is there an alternative to diesel vans to avoid the diesel penalties in the UK/EU?

My son is a mountain biker and is wishing to convert a commercial van to sleep in and service his bike whilst visiting courses around Europe. He is looking at a long wheel base, super high roof 2013 Mercedes-Benz Sprinter 312 2.1-litre. Is this a good choice for his intended use? Secondly, given the way diesels have become targeted as polluters, should he avoid diesel vans for private use? I am worried that the UK and EU will begin to penalise such vehicles in the near future pretty drastically. Any suggestions on alternative vans?

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Could you recommend a petrol towcar to replace my diesel Hyundai ix35?

I tow a 1500kg caravan with a diesel Hyundai ix35 2.0 4WD. I have already experienced an EGR problem which culminated in a frightening journey with the caravan. I have been considering petrol alternatives, which appear few. A salesman is pushing a SEAT Ateca 1.5 TSI 150. I always consider cubic capacity a must with towing, and although engines are changing I just think this one would be working too hard. Perhaps the KIA Sportage GT 1.6 turbo petrol would be good. Do you have any advice? I tow about 3000 miles per year, with a further 9000 mainly motorway miles.

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What is the procedure to keep a car after a write off?

My aunt (aged over 70) had a small accident. She pulled out and a car grazed her - it's my aunts fault. Her drivers side wing got swiped - its minor damage and the cars not worth much. The insurance company has said it's beyond economic repair and offered her £900. She wants to keep the car and the insurance company said that's fine - offered her £600 and she can keep the car. However, I think they would still write the car off. Am I correct? She is asking me for advice before she makes a decision. She wants to keep the car, as is, and keep it on the road and fix the minor damage herself. If she takes the £600 how does she still use the car? Could you help me by outlining best course of action.

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Who is liable for accident damage on a building site?

My son works as a joiner on a building site. Today a forklift driver backed into his car and caused damage to tailgate, window and bumper. When the forklift driver told him what he'd done, my son asked who would sort out the damage to his vehicle. After some discussion between various site managers (as there is more than one company working on the site), he was told by the forklift driver's manager that his car should not have been parked there, it should have been parked in the car park. My son told me he doesn't park in car park because it is miles away and he would be losing money running back and to for tools all day. Surely, somebody is liable for the damage, whether it should have been parked there or not. Please advise what we need to do.

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Is there a petrol alternative 4x4 to replace my Land Rover Freelander?

I currently drive a Land Rover Freelander 4x4 diesel, which is used around muddy fields and stables. Is there a petrol alternative which I should look at in case the current anti-diesel uproar escalates to increased taxes/bans. I appreciate there are lots of AWD cars out there but I do like the 4x4 as apposed to the 'all terrain' control versions.

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Is it standard practice for the limiter to be removed during the emissions fix?

Our 2012 diesel Volkswagen Caddy had its emissions fix and, a week later, it refused to start. RAC identified it as the ERG valve. Volkswagen said to bring it in for a diagnostic test which would be FOC if it was the result of the fix. Surprise, surprise, it was a coincidence. So I've been charged £90. They then quoted £900 for the part and also took the limiter off during the fix. They didn't advise that this had been done, is this standard practise? Any idea how we should proceed?

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Has the emissions update ruined my SEAT Ibiza?

I had the emissions update on my SEAT Ibiza 1.6 TDI Sportrider. Eight weeks later, the turbo blew. SEAT tried to blame me by saying there was too much engine oil. I got an oil sample done and the oil was diluted with diesel. From what I have researched, the update injects more fuel now. I truly believe that this update has ruined my car. What do you advise?

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Could you suggest something sporty, with good performance, that isn't too expensive?

My partner has owned her Puma from new for 17 years, but it's now ready for changing. She loves it and wants something close to it. She wants something easy to drive that has four seats, sporty looks, good performance and isn't too expensive. What would you suggest?

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I don't use my Mazda MX5 very much - is the lack of use enough to flatten the battery?

I have a Mazda MX5 1.8 which has done 21,000 miles since I bought it new in 2005. Last week its third battery (27 months old) was completely flat. I had driven it on country roads for about 30 miles, seven days before that. So I was surprised. On the other hand, I only use it about once a week and then only for a short journey. Do you think this relative lack of use, and the fact that the battery is only half charged most of the time, is cause enough for the short life of my batteries? The MX5 takes a small battery, as I'm sure you know. Do small batteries have shorter lives? I don't use the heated seats and seldom use the heated rear window or the fan.

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Should my next car be petrol or diesel?

I'm looking to buy a new car over the next few months, I do about 13,000 miles a year and am unsure what will be more cost effective. At the moment, I drive a 2007 Ford Fiesta 1.4 TDCi but I'm looking for something a bit bigger. I'm uncertain about which fuel to go with.

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Should I swap my Audi A6 TDI for a petrol Audi A4 Avant?

I currently have an Audi A6 TDI 190 and I'm nearly halfway through my PCP. I'm considering swapping for an A4 Avant, but is the TFSI petrol (252 Quattro) a good choice over the 190 diesel? I do 12,000 miles a year with occasional long trips, but on a daily basis 10 miles a day to work.

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Buying a small to medium sized crossover, which would you recommend?

I'm looking to sell my wife's Mitsubishi ASX 2 1.6, which we've had from new for five years now. I've been considering leasing, from new, either the Seat Ateca 1.0 TSI SE or the Suzuki Vitara 1.6 SZ-T 2WD. Which of these would you recommend?

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How much is my Peugeot 205 CTI cabriolet with a dimma kit fitted worth?

I have a Peugeot 205 CTI cabriolet with a dimma kit fitted. My husband started to restore but couldn't finish it. I don't know where to begin. Please could you advise. What is it worth? Is it worth restoring? How much will it cost to restore? Please help so I can make a decision.

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Do you know of any issues with the Fiat Doblo van?

I'm thinking of purchasing a secondhand van, it's a Fiat Doblo 1.6 diesel L2. Do you know if they have experienced any engine/gearbox, or other problems, with these?

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I unknowingly bought a pre-registered car - what are my rights?

I bought a car two months ago and haven't received the registration document. I've contacted the DVLA and found out that they don't have my car details on their system. I contacted the dealer and was told that the V5 document will take 180 days to receive. When I took the delivery of the car, I was not given the section 10 (V5C/2) actually I didn't have knowledge on it. When I called the dealer, I was told that its a pre-registered car and when I looked it up on the internet I came to know what it meant. Please advise on this. What are my rights?

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What is the value of a Daimler Majestic Major?

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