A Pretoria business manager has taken Renault South Africa to court to get her money back, claiming the new car they sold to her in December last year was a lemon.
Abigail Wentzel, 25, a business development manager, applied in the High Court in Pretoria for an order forcing Renault’s Zambezi branch to pay back the more than R256 000 she paid in total for her new Renault Kwid and offered to return the vehicle.
This week the court ordered Renault to file their affidavit opposing Wentzel’s claim within 10 days.
Wentzel said in court papers that there had been a rattling sound coming from the front part of the vehicle when she first started it on the showroom floor, but she was assured it was “a very common noise” on the Kwid and was just the navigation system starting up.
When the rattling sound got worse, her Kwid’s hazard lights started flashing and she realised the air conditioner was not working properly.
She phoned the salesman and was eventually told to bring the car in.
A mechanic told her the car had been sold to her with a faulty “module” which was replaced and that the central locking, which she did not even realise was faulty, was now functional.
Wentzel said that after collecting the car she noticed the Bluetooth system would stop working when the car exceeded 70km/h. She also noticed more defects, but was told to contact the motor vehicle ombudsman.
By then she had noticed that the brakes had been skimmed, the front window was rattling and the rear panels were loose. When she complained that the roof rails were coming off, the dealer “super glued” them in place.
Wentzel said when she phoned the dealer after the emergency immobiliser suddenly went on, she overheard a technician saying “a f****n Kwid again”, confirming her fears the model had known defects.
She said the dealer principal had offered to buy the car back at its “blue book” value and sell her a used Renault Clio “demo model”, but this would be to her detriment.