‘Smoking engine scammers’ targeting motorists selling cars

Reported cases revealed as scam following visit to local garage

‘Smoking engine scammers’ targeting motorists selling cars
Image: Bigstock.

A coolant scam is increasingly being used to target motorists selling cars.

The scammers are arranging to view and purchase cars advertised on Gumtree and Auto Trader.

Once at the seller’s address, they pour coolant over the engine before offering the seller a lower price than advertised.

One victim was targeted when a scammer went inside his home to view the vehicle’s paperwork and on returning to the car another man was looking under the bonnet, the Daily Echo reported.

When the car started smoking during a test drive, the victim was offered a lower price, which he refused.

Garage reveals scam

He took the car to a local garage where it was confirmed that coolant had been poured over the engine.

In Dorset, scammers poured oil over an engine in an attempt to buy a car for a lower price but a local garage confirmed that there was nothing wrong with the car.

Motorists in Dorset are being warned to look out for two men between the age of 40 and 50, one dressed in smart clothing and the other wearing a suit.

A third person is described as a male teenager wearing a Superdry jacket.

Police community support investigator Kate Hann of East Dorset Police, said: “I would like to hear from anyone who has put a car up for sale recently where the buyers have acted in a similar way, or recognises the men described from similar circumstances.

“I am also keen to remind anyone selling their car to be aware of anyone operating as described and report any suspicious activity to police.”

Are you aware of similar scams in your area? Share your comments below.

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