You’ve probably heard the omnipresent radio ads by now. Indeed it seems that Cazoo adverts are everywhere currently. And buying a used car through Cazoo certainly has some possible benefits, but what about the history of the cars they sell? Can you be sure that Cazoo’s own “car history check” service is any good?
Here I assess what we know (and what we don’t…) about Cazoo and their vehicle history checks. It’s worth noting that we here at FreeCarCheck have no connection to Cazoo, and this article is a neutral assessment rather than a recommendation.
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Should I still order a car history check myself?
We really think so.
And you might think “well you would say that…”, but there are actually some very good reasons to do your own due diligence, rather than rely on a third-party history report.
Firstly, Cazoo don’t specify the company or service that they are using to check each of the vehicle’s history that they are selling. Is it an HPI Check by HPI, or some other proprietary service? It’s hard to tell, and our attempts to find out more have fallen on deaf ears sadly.
It could be that Cazoo have built their own HPI-style check solution, or are just using a generic industry standard system like a third-party API. It’s really hard to know where they get their car history data.
What isn’t covered in a Cazoo history check?
According to a Cazoo sales rep I contacted, their vehicle history checks only verify if the car has had any “major accidents” , and also if there is any existing finance on the car.
On the first point of major accidents: this wording is a bit misleading, and it’s rife across the industry. When companies say “major accidents”, what they actually mean is a recorded major accident. In many cases, even if the incident is declared to the insurer, they will not record it if the damage isn’t severe enough to write-off the vehicle. A repaired vehicle that was not recorded as a “loss” (for example: Cat D) will unlikely be recorded anywhere. As discussed in this article, there are only a handful of ways to find out if a vehicle has ever been in an undeclared accident – asking the vendor, and checking for receipts for work done being the main methods.
So if the only parts covered by Cazoo’s history checks are accident history check and a finance check, then all of the following are presumably NOT included:
- Police stolen checks
- Certificate of Destruction checks
- Cloned plate check
- Import checks
- Export checks
- Mileage Anomaly checks
- …plus loads more!
Order a full vehicle history report to include ALL of the above + all our other regular checks for only £9.95 (inc. VAT) – enter the vehicle reg to start.
Can Cazoo send me a copy of a car’s history report?
Strangely, it doesn’t seem like they will, although I am happy to be corrected here. I have requested a copy of each respective vehicle history check for several cars that are for sale on Cazoo right now, but so far haven’t heard anything back.
Perhaps if you actually buy the vehicle then you will be entitled to see Cazoo’s car history check data, but as I have not actually bought a car through them yet, I don’t know.
If you are aware of the situation here, please can you alert me in the comment section below.
Is this different to “service history”?
Yes, that is something else entirely.
Cazoo will send you the full service history report according to their website. This article is focusing on vehicle history i.e. HPI® checks.
So overall you may wish to consider buying a full vehicle history check, from us or another company such as HPI® Check; for ultimate peace of mind. There are plenty of risks associated with not knowing what you are buying – as we have discussed in other articles here before. While Cazoo seems like a great way to buy a used car, it’s still a potential case of “buyer beware” whenever you buy a used car and it’s certainly a good idea to go in with both eyes open.