Vehicle Trading Guides

Having worked successfully in car retailing for over 30 years I feel I’m able to talk from a position of experience, gained from the shop floor when I offer comment.

The retail motor trade has a love hate relationship with its customers. Sometimes this friction is due to unrealistic expectations of a consumer, we’ve all had them. However sometimes it’s due to the actions and omissions of the seller.

No one can tell a dealer/trader what to buy or even how much to pay for a vehicle.

However when it comes to selling a vehicle there are clear guidelines set out by:


Don’t take my word for it. Consider speaking to the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA), your legal advisers or even Trading Standards for guidance, on the questions of:


  • Should I disclose any taxi licensing information to a prospective buyer?
  • Should these ex-taxi/private hire checks form part of our due diligence checks?
  • What should I do If a customer brings back a car I’ve sold them saying I did not tell them it was an ex taxi, claiming they want their money back?
  • It takes around 15 seconds and a charge of pence to lookup a registration number on Vehicle Ancestrys exclusive data base. Is this  “An unreasonable expectation” for a consumer spending £1000’s? Our data is already searched over 500k times a month by the motor trade, so it’s not new.

How your decisions today

could impact

your decisions in the future.

How many times have you heard it said…

Consumer law “everything is always weighted on the side of the consumer”?

There are also breaches of “The Consumer Protection From Unfair Trading Regulations” (CPR’s) which could lead to a fine and prosecution if found guilty of any breaches (Failing to supply a buyer information he may rely on to make an informed buying decision).

There are many dealers with sales staff unaware of their obligations to disclose the truth about a vehicle. This includes being an ex taxi or ex “L” driver vehicle.

“Ignorance is no defence in law”

Motor retailers are using outdated provenance providers, they maybe the biggest names around but they’re missing millions of very important records. Like records of cars not showing on the write off register, millions of records of ex taxi, private hire & Uber vehicles. Thousands of other vehicles such as ex police, MOD, Highways vehicles and more.

It would be prudent for anyone involved in the motor trade to review their current provenace provider and take a good look at what is being offered within the reports of others & the “Next Generation” of checks.

In 2016 I had no idea that the write off register was a voluntary resource, which means 1000’s of cars don’t show. I was also unaware of how many main franchised dealers were selling previously licensed taxi/private hire vehicles.

We don’t supply a complete provenance check but these two companies do and much more data besides, most probably for less than you pay now?

I pioneered Vehicle Ancestry to help and support dealers/garages from unscrupulous sellers, both private & trade.


You don’t have to break links with your current provider either to access this data as we can arrange an API for big users or arrange access via a standalone look up system for the average dealer. If you sell an ex taxi or ex police car etc, a consumer can come back at any point to seek compensation or to return the vehicle.

Why Use Vehicle Ancestry?

  • Why pay the same price for an ex-taxi/Uber or ex-Public Sector vehicle?
  • Protect your future business. It’s cheap (pennies) and easy to register!
  • Sourcing good retail stock is difficult, so who wants to buy an ex-taxi/Uber or ex-Public Sector vehicle?
  • Nearly 300,000 hackney carriage and private hire cars are licensed every year, that’s over 1000 per working day! Many will work their way to a sales forecourt, Vehicle Ancestry can help you spot them.
  • Our service is designed to support those in the motor industry who would prefer to know when dealing with ex-taxis & public sector vehicles. Having this information to pass on to prospective buyers can only help to improve customer satisfaction.
  • Provenance checks can verify many things like vehicle details, outstanding finance, insurance data etc; however, NONE of the major provenance providers have access to our database which is in excess of 7 million records.
  • Our research has found that auction houses, manufacturers, car buying services and finance companies are selling ex-taxis & Public Sector vehicles to reputable dealers and independent garages. Some of these are less than 12 months old & under 20k miles. We can help you spot them.
  • All our Licensing information and Public Sector vehicle information is supplied direct from the relevant source.
  • Vehicle Ancestry is the only place to have licensing data from EVERY licensing council in England, Scotland, Ireland & Wales. Making us the biggest supplier of ex-taxi data to the motor trade.
  • The Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) has set guidelines for the sale of ex fleet/lease cars which includes taxis & Public Sector vehicles. We’ll help you spot them.
  • Our database is updated continuously with information. Perhaps that’s why the motor trade carry out over 500k registration checks every month with us.