While Australia is still considering stronger consumer laws covering seriously defective vehicles, riders should do their best to avoid buying a “lemon”.
The best way to do this is to get a quick online report from the Personal Properties Security Register or QuickRevs on the motorcycle’s history, including:
Written off records
Stolen vehicle check
Be aware that this replaces the previous REVS check. Avoid using any sites with website addresses that seem like a REVS check as they are spurious and will cost a lot more.
Some of them have extra information, but most don’t.
Meanwhile, Australia needs tough “Lemon Laws” or consumer protection laws that provide a satisfactory repair, full refund or replacement product for a major consumer expense item such as a car, SUV or motorcycle deemed to repeatedly fail to meet acceptable standards. They extend beyond normal warranties and consumer laws.
Australia currently does not have Lemon Laws, but has the Australian Consumer Law (ACL) which is designed to protect the rights of new car buyers only. Yet not one owner has been granted a replacement vehicle or a refund since the ACL came into effect in 2011!
It also doesn’t mention used vehicle warranties or motorcycles.
They are hardly Lemon Laws.
The ACL is being reviewed by the Consumer Affairs Australia and New Zealand (CAANZ) which has released an Issues Paper with submissions now closed.
Several countries such as the US (since 1975) have varying Lemon Laws that set limits on the number of:
- faults a new or warrantied vehicle can suffer;
- unsuccessful repair attempts on the same problem;
- days a new or warrantied vehicle can be off the road for repairs.
Where these limits are exceeded, the Lemon Law requires the manufacturer or supplier to give the consumer a replacement or refund.
The Consumer Action Law Centre is proposing a term that defines lemons as “vehicles which have been repaired at least three times by the manufacturer or importer that are still defective – or if the vehicle is out of service for 20 or more days in total due to a defect”.
Meanwhile, if you have bought a motorcycle you believe is a lemon that may be covered by the current ACL, these are your contacts for complaint:
- NSW Fair Trading
- Victoria Consumer Affairs
- Queensland Fair Trading
- SA Consumer and Business Services
- WA Department of Commerce
- Tasmania Consumer Affairs and Trading
- Access Canberra
- NT Consumer Affairs
Have you got a motorcycle that is a lemon? Tell us all about it in the “Leave a reply” section below or send us an email.