Remote control car specialists HPI have, for some unknown reason, been looking into whether or not that second-hand car you were thinking of buying might have been stolen, or been written off, or have some outstanding finance owing on it.

Clearly, none of those things would be good. So you’d want to know about it before you went ahead and authorised that PayPal transfer, sat back, and waited for Andrew from Birminghand, Englan to deliver it to your door as agreed.

You’d probably be prepared to pay good money for information like that, wouldn’t you? Maybe to someone like HPI who apparently are really good at checking things, as well as flogging RC cars. Well, Bankstone News can save you the trouble. It turns out whichever used car you’re looking at almost certainly was stolen, or glued back together, or not entirely paid for, or whatever.

So before you go wasting your money clicking on that HPI health check button, purely to confirm what you can basically take as a given, just reflect on the following statistic provided by HPI themselves. They claim to identify no fewer than 74 stolen vehicles up for sale every day. And you can almost certainly bet, it’s not the same 74 vehicles again and again.

According to BodyShock magazine, from whom we nicked this story, HPI find exactly 1,771 cars on sale every day that have previously been written off. You or I might think that astronomical figure pays eloquent tribute to plucky Brits’ resourcefulness in giving totalled motors a new lease of life. But apparently their new owners are often less than thrilled when bits start falling off – or when the chassis folds in on itself half-way along the A6177. There’s no pleasing some folk!

HPI spokesperson Fernando Garcia, who sounds a touch foreign, but let’s give the lad the benefit of the doubt, empathises with persons attempting to purchase a second-hand motor vehicle, which he imagines must already be “very stressful without the additional headache of whether or not the vendor is trying to rip you off,” which, clearly, we’ve pretty much established he is by now!

Señor Garcia finds it worrying, for instance, that “clocking costs UK motorists more than £800m every year” yet 46% percent of drivers don’t even know what ‘clocking’ means. Bankstone News, of course, knows exactly what it means. We’d explain it to you now, but we’d risk missing first orders down the Badgers if we got bogged down in lots of needless explainage.

“It’s easy to be taken in by these common scams,” Nando warns. But, he urges, more encouragingly, “it’s also easy to protect yourself by doing just a few key things before buying.”

That’s reassuring, then, isn’t it.

Must dash!


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