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Old 01-13-2010, 10:17 PM   #1
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Bought used Camaro with previous tune - voided warranty?

No, this didn't happen to me. Mine was NEW. But, it's bound to happen to someone soon.

With USED Camaros popping up on dealer lots, there are bound to be some that appear stock but have previously been tuned, either by a professional or a novice with a programmer.

Even if the previous owner who tuned one of these set the car back to stock tune before trading it in, GM can still (supposedly) see that. So, if a subsequent owner has a warranty claim denied because of a tune that they knew nothing about, can they claim ignorance?

I know if I bought a used Camaro and had this happen, I'd be

So, who would be responsible here? If the used Camaro was a private party purchase, I'd think that the previous owner could be sued in civil court for the diminished value of the car and by not divulging that the car had been tuned. But, if the car was a trade in, should the Chevy dealers be checking for this and somehow "erasing" the fact that the car was ever tuned?
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Old 01-13-2010, 10:19 PM   #2
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Nope, what is done is done. Buyer beware..

But, if you could prove it small claims court.
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Old 01-13-2010, 11:08 PM   #3
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If GM did void the warranty, you would likely have a claim against the seller (whether a dealership or private party) of the vehicle for a breach of an implied warranty. In Louisiana, this would be known as a redhibitory defect which is defined as a hidden defect in a thing which either renders the car useless or diminishes its use to such an extent that you either would not have bought the car or would have bought it, but at a lesser price. If you could prove that there was a hidden/unknown defect (i.e. a tune that voids the factory warranty) then you could either have the sale rescinded or the price reduced by the value of the warranty (depending on the circumstances). While LA law is different than the other 49 states, there are similar provisions under UCC sales law which is generally applicable in the rest of the US.

Generally, the viability of this claim would depend on the actual contract you entered into when buying the car. Usually, used car contracts contain the clause "as is, where is, and without warranties," or something of this nature. Whether or not such a waiver of warranty is effective is sometimes a complicated issue of law. As an attorney, if I were in this situation I would argue that while I did buy the car "as is," as is included the remaining GM factory warranty. The practical problem is that most people are not lawyers, and it is not cost effective to hire an attorney to bring such a claim against a seller. The moral of the story is to ask the seller whether or not the car has been modified to such a degree that the factory warranty could possibly be voided. Further, you should get a writing signed by the seller stating that the factory warranty is still in effect. If the seller is unwilling to do this, don't buy the car.
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Old 01-14-2010, 12:36 AM   #4
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If purchasing a used 2010 Camaro (or any car for that matter), I would image that a buyer would NEVER think to ask such a thing as if the car was tuned, especially if buying that car from a dealership. It could be months or longer down the road when an unsuspecting owner takes his car in for a valve noise or blown motor and is given the bad news...

Sorry buddy, but you tuned your car.
"No, I didn't...what are you talking about?"
Well, our computer says you did
"Must have been the previous owner, but you guys sold me the car this way"

So, would it be a good idea for GM dealers to check their trade-ins (Not just Camaros) for tunes and NOT accept them if they are still under factory warranty?
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Old 01-14-2010, 07:39 AM   #5
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I wouldn't worry so much about hypotheticals.

If your buying a used car, the previous owner could have also thrown a crack pipe under the seat. I use to be a dealer tech, seen a million strange things. We had a used car once we couldn't get the dead fish smell out of, then we found all the dead minnows under the back seat.
Apparently someone's bait bucket spilled and they didn't bother to find all the missing fishees.

It's a what if, and a stretch. If it does happen, you sit down with the Service Manager and reasonable people can ussually work things like this out.
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Old 01-29-2010, 10:15 PM   #6
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Just from past experience, I have yet to see a car or truck under the mileage and age of a warranty, NOT have remaining factory warranty if its sitting in a dealers lot.
I've seen cars and trucks that were close to the end of their warranty, and the dealer serviced it, certified it, and gave it an extended warranty. You guys are a bunch of worry warts.

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