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Warning issued over clocked cars

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Car dealers have been urged to validate a vehicle's mileage after a report revealed that one in 17 cars in the UK are clocked.

The Vehicle and Operator Services Agency (VOSA) revealed that one in 39 cars that undergo an MOT have had their mileage altered or clocked, but vehicle information experts Hire Purchase Investigations (HPI) found that the figure is closer to one in 17.

The difference in figures is because the VOSA data does not include information on MOTs completed on vehicles prior to 2005 or on vehicles less than three years old.

Motorists who unknowingly end up buying clocked cars, risk making their car insurance cover invalid.

Daniel Burgess, automotive director for HPI, said: "Unwittingly part exchanging a clocked car is a very real risk for retailers. With the tools to adjust mileages so easily available on the web consumers are just as likely to be the clocking cars as unscrupulous traders, doubling the danger to dealers."

"Not surprisingly the Office of Fair Trading has clearly stated that mileage disclaimers are not enough and to meet due diligence you must prove you have done everything in your power to validate a car's mileage."

If a vehicle has had more than one keeper or if a discrepancy has been shown, HPI's mileage investigation team will check all avenues to correctly validate the vehicle's mileage, giving dealers confidence in the quality of its stock.

© Press Association 2011