Carcraft Complaints

Several years ago, back in 2004, I was looking to buy a new car. My Ford Capri had decided enough was enough and it’s daily 80 mile round trip from Newport to Bristol was too much for it. Being the ‘over the top’ person I am I looked to a BMW Z3 for my second car.

No sense letting the grass grow eh?

So, armed with my Parkers guide price for each model dating back to 1996, and the average mileage to expect for the year, I looked around a few garages for a Z3. One such garage I looked at was the Carcraft centre in Newport. Now, before I went I researched on the Internet (as I do) and read an awful lot of negative comments about Carcraft. Many of the comments said the same thing; their cars were over priced and well over average mileage.

I thought I’d give them a chance anyway.

I went in and was immediately set upon by this car dealer who wouldn’t let me enter the warehouse until I’d given him my name, address and phone number. No matter how much I said I wasn’t interested, he wouldn’t take no for an answer. Reluctantly I gave him the info he wanted and proceeded to look at the cars.

They had a few BMW Z3 models, one in particular I quite liked the look of however the price was high for the age and it had some damage to the drivers side front panel.

When I inquired further I found the Mileage was 20,000 miles over average for the year. I figured there was some room to barter here, with the mileage and the scratches to the bodywork.

I approached a salesman and explained my position, how I’d researched the value of the car and the average mileage, then told him what I thought the car was worth.

Do you know, he didn’t even reply to me. He just turned his back and walked away. I couldn’t believe how rude this guy was. Not a word. He wasn’t even a junior, he was a senior salesman as I’d been told I needed to speak to him if I wanted to discuss the price.

It seems what I’d read on line was true. Carcraft sell high mileage cars for extortionate prices. They rely on people struggling to get finance in order to rip them off with their ‘offers’.

Has anyone else had any experience with Carcraft? I’d love to know if my experience was a typical one.

I later bought a Z3 from a garage in Bristol, £3,000 cheaper than the one in Carcraft, no damage and with over 30,000 less miles on the clock.

Darren Jamieson, aka MrDaz, is the Technical Director and co-founder of Engage Web and has been working online in a career spanning two decades. His first website was built in 1998 and is still live today.

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19 thoughts on “Carcraft Complaints”

  1. The only good things I’ve ever heard about CarCraft have been in their own adverts. Don’t they trade on the fact that they can offer plebs 30% credit rather than on the value of their cars ? I mean, look at

  2. their website with it’s big flashing “apply for finance” button in the middle of the navigation.

    The guy probably just saw you as;
    a) someone who knows how to haggle and won’t be bullied into making a purchase,
    b) someone who won’t be needing finance, and so
    c) not likely to get him much commision.

    Sorry about the double posting, finger slipped!

  3. any person with any knowledge means more work and more hassle for a salesman. you are only probs 20% going to buy, so they will work with the suckers instead. standing your ground is the exact way to deal with salesmen like this.

    had a similar experience myself years ago when i walked in to an arnold clark centre with cash (in notes) for a brand new fiat punto (the day the new model came out) but the sales guy spent 20 minutes trying to make me have finance. They just DID NOT WANT to take my ready cash from me as it mean less for them.

    absolute scum

  4. BAD BAD BAD BAD. We bought a Freelander for £10,000 (Later found out they were going for £6500 Private) OK… So lesson learned. We’d part ex’d our Picasso and got £3500 for it. (It was on their forecourt next week for £6500… OK.. So they are a business and there to make money.

    Now for the real issues. 120 point check???. Our Freelander required a full service to uphold the (Carcraft NAC) warranty so we splashed out and took it to Landrover because my wife would be driving this car with my young son on board and we had to be sure everything was OK. The report came back from Landrover that the vehicle was not road worthy and required £450 of repair to get it so. Carcraft willingly paid for that so I was just pleased that we didn’t have to pay the bill.

    We took out their 1 year warranty for just under a grand. I read it and it stated that they would only cover up to £750 of the cost of any repair. I was about to walk out of the door because, as I explained to the sales guy, if the head gasket goes it’s going to cost me a lot more than that. The sales guy went on to assure me that the £750 bit was per part repaired. I.E. If your head gasket goes it would cover each part of the engine that was damaged as long as each part didn’t exceed £750.

    On the strength of this we went ahead. We were in there for 9 LONG hours. We were told we were getting £2000 cash back. Realized two months down the line that they had just added £2000 to the back end of the loan in an unobvious cleaver way.

    8 Months down the line, head gasket went. Took it straight to Landrover as I have this fantastic warranty that would cover everything. Landrover called me back a day later to tell me that the cost of the repair was just over £2500 and Carcraft would cover £750 of that cost. Getting worried now. I called Carcraft and spoke to the big boss(I think). He informed me that they would never had said anything other than they would only cover up to £750 of a total repair and that it was my word against his sales guy(When these sales are taking place they are in an enclosed room so nobody else can hear anything).

    Anyway, £2000 3 weeks before Christmas. Thanks Carcraft. That was sure a year to remember. I was told by the guy who delivered my car back from Landrover that he see’s at least two of these blown head gaskets per week and that I should get rid of the car asap because it could go at any time again.

    I sold the car 2 weeks later and got £5500 for it. I am still paying the remaining £6500 I owe on the car to this day.

    It only had 50K on the clock and a full Landrover history. I’m not blaming Carcraft for the inherent Head Gasket problem on the K series engine, but I am MAD at Carcraft for making me feel such a Fool. Yes… I feel so so stupid because I was, obviously, stitched up big time and fell for everything they told me.

    I don’t take comfort in learning that thousands of other Carcare customers are having the same such experiences now and in the past.

    Carcraft is a good place to visit if your not sure what sort of car you want or you just want to browse but I would Highly recommend that if you do buy from there, take you own mechanic and use cash but before you do buy, check Autotrader. I GUARANTEE you will find the same car for at least £2000 less than Carcrafts price.

    Many thank for listening to me.


    Un-happy Carcraft (customer)

  5. Interesting responses. I bought my Rover 75 1.8T from Carcraft in Birtley (North East). They were absolutely gutted when I actually qualified for the zero percent deal they had on it !!!. As you say – they are used to plebs who they can scam. I did take the 3 year NAC warranty and now (nearly one year later) the head gasket has blown. It’s in the garage now and NAC have been contacted with regard to the £ 408.00 fee to repair it. The car was serviced well within the time/mileage limit stipulated by a Rover ‘dealer’. Interestingly the car had never had the plugs, pollen filter, etc.. changed in 40000 miles of use….. It also had the guts taken out of the thermostat and was running minus these parts. Let’s see what NAC’s response is to the completely legit head gasket claim….. Normal wear and tear ??? – just let them try that one !!!.

  6. Has anyone had Problems with CARCRAFT where the salesperson has passed the clients personal details onto a separate motor dealer?
    My mate has just been ripped off by these monkeys. A private dealer phoned him and said “”As you failed the finance from CARCRAFT we can offer you a good deal. We have all your details so we can do the paperwork for you.” These details were only given to CARCRAFT.

  7. Just came across this very interesting blog entry, and am surprised that nobody has anything decent to say about Carcraft: I think it goes to show that their adverts just blow things out of proportion and, when looking back, it all seems too good to be true. A bit like the negative reviews I was reading earlier…

    My experience of Carcraft was in the summer of 2005. I went to the Leeds showroom along with my mum, who was looking for a new car. As someone who always kept his eyes out on car deals, I suggested we try Carcraft out; after all, they were the type of people who had what we wanted- 0% over several years, which in theory meant we could buy a newer car for once. We had nothing to lose…

    We got there in the late afternoon and, before we knew it, we had a typical Yorkshire car salesman wanting to see a deal through. Yorkshire aside, he was still a salesman: flashy suit, cufflinks, swish tie and shirt and incredibly shiny brown/red shoes, he somehow forgot that I wasn’t the one buying! My mother and I weren’t at all impressed with the prices either, considering age-price-mileage, which are three essential criteria. The prices were well above retail value, and that’s the catch: they’re not really giving you 0% because the inflated price is really the interest they’d make otherwise, only nobody seems to realise.

    Admittedly, a friend had purchased a brand new Mazda MX5 some months earlier from JCT600, an actual Mazda dealer on 0% finance, for a good price, ex-demo (always worth looking for) etc, and when I asked if he’d considered Carcraft, he was bitter about them and told me to steer clear of them due to exactly what I’ve mentioned above! I mean, this being 2005, a 1999 Proton (something or other) was there at over £2,000. That’s one example they typically have of a rubbish car at an extortionate amount- but people are blinded by being able to get 0% finance on a used car and fel like they have to settle with Carcraft because they won’t find better elsewhere.

    I recall getting into a 54-reg Ford Mondeo TDCi Ghia X, priced at almost £17,000 and with around 30,000 miles on the clock…above average for its age. I just wanted a feel for a car I’d liked, and sat inside it, played around with the toys etc. The dodgy salesman saw me and made me get back in and again started pitching it to me, showing me how brilliant the sound system was, how there was no vibrating from the speakers, turning the volume and bass up to full. I honestly couldn’t care less, but he was clearly the type who’d pick a victim.

    They also had a clever ‘test drive as many cars as you like’ gimmick, but please don’t fall for any of this (they were reluctant about this when I asked!) or any of the gimmicks car dealers give.

    I’d only recommend Carcraft as a way of passing time with your mates, on your way to another place or just to get a feel for a car you’re planning on getting, but don’t buy from them. Going private is always best.

    I think Parker review pages are always the most impartial for advice. Whatcar is far to biased towards German cars and refuses to acknowledge anything good about any other make they decide to hate.

  8. Hey Andy, good points one and all.

    I have realised one thing since I wrote this post. Carcraft pitch themselves at people who can’t get car credit anywhere else, so their ‘deals’ are made to seem good to the stupid.

    They’re like the Brighthouse of the car world. They’re expensive, they’re selling shit, they have bad credit deals and their staff are slimey – but they sell to people who just can’t get the credit anywhere else.

  9. I hate car craft! in nov 2007 i bough an mg zr 120 1.8….so i thought! when i received the log book they had actually sold me a 1.4 zr 25!! the wrong car! they still have not cancelled it today!.
    however driving the car home it started to make funny noises…the next day it went back to the garage they said it was something to do with the cooling system???? my boyfriend suspected head gaskett…we took the car bak 3 times b4 the head gaskett finally went! i tried so hard to get this void contract cancelled but they were having none of it! they said it was jjus a miss print in contract!! miss sell more like!!
    anyway after the head was fixed 2mnths later the cam shaft went!! this company is the biggest loads of sh** iv ever heard of…the warranty is crap not worth the paper its written on! they said i had a top up loan with a company called all in one finance,,,,this company DOES NOT EXIST!! its car craft! anyway i am taking legal action against them now as not only has this caused stress but money and me havin to ensure THEIR courtesy car twice!! WHAT A JOKE!!!!!!!!!

  10. I visited CarCraft on the 21/02/2011 as i applied for a Renault Megane 1.6 sport Hatchback online, after completing all the paperwork for a finance programme the payments would be £98 a month, affordable i thought. After 3 hours they then came back to me and told me my finance had been rejected and they would offer me another car, i was disappointed as they offerd me a Vauxhall corsa 07 Plate. Never the less i agreed and was told the payments would be £157 a month, Pricey i thought, but accepted the offer. After signing all the papers for the finance plan i then left and picked the car up the next day. After looking through the documents at home i then found another document with a 2nd Credit agreement which i was unaware off, this had now brought the price up to £245 a month. I was also told 4 Years guarantee had to be part of the programme but i could cancel it over the phone. I phoned NAC and tried to cancel the 4 years guarantee which i was paynng £1295 for when i was also told i was payin another £1295 for guarantee on the Renault Megane which i didnt even buy. I have taken the car back to carcraft and ask for the whole finance programme to be cancelled, they are looking into it with head office but i have been told i may still have to £7000 for the interest. adding all of this up i was exspected to pay just over £17000 for a car not even worth £5000.

    STAY AWAY FROM CARCRAFT – because once your in it, its hard to get out of it.

  11. Hi,
    I got an online valuation for my Limited Edition Madza 3 Sport, 6180, wasn’t happy with it so left it. 1 hour later I got a phone call asking why I didn’t take any further steps, I told the guy straight that I wasn’t happy with the valuation, as car is top spec stc. He persuaded me to go in to the Birtley showroom, so I did. Valuation was redone and they offered me £7100, as they didn’t have any cars that I liked I left it!!! I left my details with the car I was interested in and asked them to contact me, 3 weeks later I found they had a car in that I wanted (same as details given) so I rang them, was told they would ring me back within 1 hour!! 6 hours later NO CALL, so i called them, was told the manager wasn’t there to OK “the deal” and she would ring me back 10.30am next morning. 11am give them their dues, they did ring me back but instead of it being the person I spoke to the day b4 it was some smarmy bloke. He was rather rude and blunt and said my car was valued lower than last time, would I be interested in finance??? NO would I be up for adding cash to my car??? NO!!! he then said well personally I don’t think your car is worth as much as it was valued at, when I pointed out why value it at that price then??? he came back with well prices change month by month! OK I said not even 1 month has passed!!! what do you say to that??? Ohh I will have to have another word with the manager and get back to you!! OK I replied: but I tell ya what! Get ya manager to ring me NOT you!!! I am still awaiting the phone call!!!! and after reading all this and what I’ve experienced so far I am considering telling them where to go!!!

  12. I bought a 57 plate audi from carcraft and i have had it a month two days ago the front left gave way whilst driving wich caused me not to be able to turn right and made me colide with the curb as i was going round a round about at the time, car craft recovered my car and now have said they take no responsibilaty for the accadent and will not fix the car even though i have the gaurantee and paid extra for platinum cover. they now want money for the recovery ov my car and still expect me to pay for the car pluss the payment ov the repair. the car when i bought it had a months tax on and only one key and 63000 miles wich i didnt know until i drove it away. my advice to every one DONT GO TO CARCRAFT

  13. carcraft…..what a &*(*& joke they are! after being told our credit agreement was all in place and asked to go to my most local showroom and its still 40 mins away we had picked a car only to be told NOOOOO so we picked another one only to be told after 7 and half hours of waiting about all day that we couldnt get it even though we had signed all the paper work to say it was sorted. what an absolute joke they are and i would not recommend anyone to use carcrap =] as they offer the most shocking customer service skills…basically total rubbish. If you have a day to kill doing nothing then yes go sit at carcrap and put ya feet up because thats pretty much all there is to do oh and not forget ting to WAIT.

  14. Friend recommened carcraft so went to carcraft lakeside Nov 2011 to look for a Corsa. Firstly I was just looking to see what cars were available and check the interest rate and repayments. Whilst chatting with the salesman I saw a corsa 57 plate car looked a bit shabby although car was cleaned on outside the inside was not cleaned looked like dog hair on seats and the boot was dirty but just thought that car had just arrived as according to salesman car arrived that morning. Whilst talking with the salesman he said that if I wanted the car released that day I would have to pay a £150 release fee ( Yea right he thought I was born yesterday) asked him how much the finance would be but he said that the paperwork would be explained in details. the car was valued at £5996 by the time they had sorted the paperwork out it was £9445 plus paperwork fee and release fee even though the car was there. Oh the warranty they tried shafting me was a complete joke nearly a grand they must have thought I was stupid. Warranty wise quoted me pay as you go £48 per month these wankers tried to give sell me a warranty for just under a grand. The best bit was they said that I did not pass there credit check even though they said they credit checked me but whilst I was outside I phoned experian credit agency and they said that no one had done any credit check lol so there basically liars. The best bit was that they could still help me but the interest and repayments would be higher yea right.

    Left Carcrap that day and went to a Vauxhall dealer and bought a car on my shite credit rating at 0% finance so much happy.

  15. the idiots r not returning my deposit……….. i have told them to cancel my application kuz i got refused n now they refuse to give my finance

  16. My fiancee and I went to carcraft today and whilst they were a touch too much for me they guy seemed helpful explaining where to find the cars and which types are where. Anyway I was after a BMW 1 series so was looking around at them. The guy was sniffing about constantly and even forgetting my name and remembering my fellers (despote the fact I was looking/ buying). But anyway, we test drove the car and then moved to the dreaded ’round table’. He tried to. Convince me that the deal is only good with him and right now. I said I wanted to see numbers for what finance would be and so on. He tells me and I um and ar. i know i have to doscuss it with my mother and tell the guy this. He then askes me several times what it would take for me to take the car and not tell my mum! Irrisponsibe trying to play on mu youth here. Then thr manager comes over and says that he’s knocking loads off the car here and i need to snap his hand off! Car 09 plate with scratches black deisel and £13000. Same or similar car at BMW dealer (which will be top buck) £11000. What a laugh.

    BEWARE young people being forced into a ‘deal’ sometimes you have y
    To step back. Anyone who would say ‘don’t tell your mum amd we’ll do a deal is not trust worthy’.

    I didn’t buy the car but have recieved a text and 2 phone calls that evening.

  17. Hi my name is John I would just like to say that I all so have bought a car from car craft and would warn anybody that is thinking of buying off then not to I have had nothing but trouble with my car and the customer service and after sale is terrible my car has been in for repair no less than ten times and every time u mention about compensation it’s the same crap I’ve heard people call them carcrafty and know I see y all I can say is if u are thinking of buying a car go somewhere else

  18. Well 5 years ago took out a car loan via Car craft for a Land Rover and 3 years in it started playing up so it was part ex for a car.

    So far 2 years in the cars working a treat, no problems plus we have a great Part Ex deal from Car craft and had a great service.

    Don’t know if it was because we was past customers but the deal and service we had was top notch and the branch was Newport.

    So far no complaints from us.

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