Used car scams: the cut and shut

If you’re not careful, you could end up getting two cars for the price of one when you next buy a used car.

Unfortunately, to be more accurate, you’re getting two halves for the price of one whole, because you could end up buying a cut and shut. Such vehicles are the result of two written-off cars being used to create one apparently good vehicle.

It works by welding the front half of a rear-ended car to the back half of a car that’s been in a serious front-end smash. 

Such vehicles are the result of two written-off cars being used to create one apparently good vehicle

The cars are cut up then welded together to create a car that looks straight. However, while the car may look fine, it’s a rolling death trap that’ll disintegrate in the slightest impact. To make sure you don’t get taken in by this scam, you need to look closely along the top of the windscreen as well as underneath the seats. 

It won’t take much to see the join from underneath, unless copious quantities of underseal have been plastered everywhere. Also look out for badly mismatched paint as well as overspray on the glass and trim; these suggest the car has been repainted at some point. Mismatched trim inside the car is another giveaway.