As a community of car owners and drivers in India we've collectively had our fair share of experiences being scammed by con artists on the road. There is a barrage of scam threads all over the forum, and many of our members & readers would have had first-hand experiences of being duped inadvertently.
However, there is no single consolidated list of scams to warn you about what to watch out for, and how to avoid getting scammed yourself. This thread sorts through the variety of scams that motorists face, and tells you how to avoid them.
The list has been broken up into scams related to...
Scams related to buying a car:
Registering a car with the next model year on the RC.
Dealer sells you a demo car / damaged car, for the full brand-new price.
Dealer says he can get you a small discount if you provide your previous car's RC documents.
Dealer overcharges you for Road Tax / Insurance, also illegally collects "handling chages".
Someone advertises (usually online) to sell an almost-new immaculate car for a throwaway price.
Bogus insurance papers provided, or reduced coverage.
Scams related to driving on the road:
Now that you have got yourself a genuinely good car, and paid exactly the right amount for what you bought, it's time to drive it on the road. Here, again, are thousands of con artists trying very hard to relieve you of your hard earned money.
You are cheated in (quantity or quality) when buying fuel.
Lone drivers, especially women, are easier targets for false accusations, physical intimidation and theft.
Theft of fuel from your vehicle at a parking lot, or at the service workshop.
Puncturing your tyres, to make money by repairing them.
Luggage theft from your car's boot under the guise of a security check.
Toll plaza personnel charge you more, or even less than the published toll fee.
Crooked policemen try to reprimand you for breaking the law, when you're innocent.
Scams related to ownership, service & repair:
It is not just strangers on the road who try to make a quick buck by scamming you. You tend to whole-heartedly trust those who take care of your pride and joy - and the same 'trustworthy' people insuring and servicing your vehicle are just as guilty of knowingly trying to defraud you.
Pay for a complete oil change, but you don't get what you paid for.
You are advised to unnecessarily replace your clutch during a service.
You are advised to service your car more frequently than is recommended by the manufacturer.
Service centre replaces good parts of your car with bad ones, or uses your car for joyrides.
Warranty exclusions on plea of 'wear and tear' parts.
Scams related to selling your car:
The new owner does not transfer the vehicle's registration to his name.
Buyer uses a forged mode of payment (eg. fake demand draft).