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Used car complaints continue to grow

Used car sales by independent retailers prompted the highest level of complaints in 2007 to the UK’s official consumer advice body Consumer Direct.

A record 41,800 complaints were dealt with in relation to used cars last year, rising by almost a fifth on the previous year. A further 13,322 complaints about second hand cars bought from franchise dealers was at number 10 for most complained about business. Independent garage repairs were also the cause of 15,253 complaints in 2007.

Michele Shambrook, Consumer Direct operations manager, said: "The rise in complaints in 2007 reflects a growing awareness of the service among the general public, as well as an increasing willingness among consumers to complain when they buy unsatisfactory goods or receive poor service.

"Consumers are finding that by arming themselves with information about their rights, they stand a better chance of resolving problems with shops and traders."

Consumer Direct, which is Government funded and offers advice on consumer issues by telephone and email.

Top 10 complaints in 2007

1. Used cars bought from independent traders: 41,880
2. Mobile phone service agreements: 34,679
3. TVs: 19,744
4. Mobile phone hardware: 17,760
5. Personal goods and services: 16,976
6. General building work: 15,598
7. Independent garage repairs: 15,253
8. Upholstered furniture: 14,024
9. Internet service providers: 13,536
10. Used cars bought from franchises: 13,322

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