Man sues DVLA £150K after it stripped his car of historic status

Vehicle was registered as 1964 AC Cobra but DVLA later said the car was actually built in 2002

Man sues DVLA £150K after it stripped his car of historic status
Julian Seddon believed he bought a genuine AC Cobra because the logbook described the car's tax status as historic and stated that it was first registered in 1964. Stock image.

A retired film producer who bought what he thought was an authentic 1964 AC Cobra is suing the DVLA after it said the car no longer had historic status.

Julian Seddon had forked out £250,000 for the car but lost £150,000 when he sold it because the DVLA claimed that it was a mix of “old and new parts” built in 2002.

The 75-year-old, believes the DVLA was negligent in failing to warn about its doubts before he bought the car in October 2014.

Barrister, John Black said Julian “would not have purchased the vehicle” had he known that its status as a historic vehicle was “liable to investigation”

He explained that the purchase of an AC Cobra was made in good faith, partly relying on the integrity of its V5C logbook.

The DVLA is reported to be fighting the case, disputing that the car’s logbook could be taken as hard proof of its age and provenance.

Its lawyers insist that the DVLA does not owe a duty of care to car buyers.

Home Page Forums Man sues DVLA £150K after it stripped his car of historic status

This topic contains 4 replies, has 2 voices, and was last updated by  Lee Heywood 1 year, 1 month ago.

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  • #151582 Reply


    Surely a purchaser of a vehcle has a right to believe that the V5 logbook would be an authority to trust when looking at details like the date of registration ?

    And the VIN number does that not contain details of where the car was built and when?

    #151587 Reply


    It’s only as good as the info typed in .if I was spending that kind of money I would have had it inspected and investigated independently

    #151592 Reply

    Jason blackiston

    Steve is right in what he says. Get any vehicle verified. What it says on a logbook must not be taken as truth when it comes to classic cars and motorcycles. Things change so much over the years. I have seen bikes in which the only original part is the headstock or part with the number on it. There is an ethical notion that the V5 denotes an original vehicle. I have seen a Mini Cooper S dragged out of a farm yard with not one useable part on it apart from the engine block. It had papers and the old buff logbook after a complete “restoration” including a brand new body shell and every part new it is now in somebody’s collection as a totally original genuine car. Not DVLAs fault that this is on the market, the car club must of verified it at some point when it came to re-regeristing it under the “original” registration.

    #151593 Reply

    Lee Heywood

    They are trying to get up to speed on their historic vehicle malarkey. Most cars of historic interest have had lots of parts changed. Is the engine original if it’s had pistons changed. Or rings or even gaskets. The v5 should declare the original vehicle. It should be down to the owner / buyer to prove how original it is.

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