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Thursday, October 21, 2021

Qatar shuts main Toyota showroom, two dealerships for ‘commercial fraud’

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Toyota showroom
Toyota showroom

With reporting from Riham Sheble and Chantelle D’mello

Qatar’s main Toyota/Lexus showroom on Airport Road has been closed for one month for violating consumer protection laws, the Ministry of Economy and Commerce has said.

The closure of the Abdullah Abdulghani & Bros. dealership, which took effect yesterday, May 28, also affects two Toyota dealers on Salwa Road.

According to the MEC, which posted the closure on social media, Toyota had apparently been selling cars to consumers as brand-new, without telling them that they had been in accidents before and were repainted/repaired before sale.

In addition to the main showroom, two Toyota dealers – Altadamon Motors and Trading Co. and Al-Tariq Automobiles Trading Co. – have also been shut for a month.

Other companies

This is the fourth company in Qatar to face such a closure in the past six months.

In January, Domasco Honda’s main showroom at TV Roundabout was shut for a month for the same offense.

And two weeks before that, the Chrysler, Dodge, Jeep and Ram dealership on Al Matar Street, near the old airport, as well as the Nissan dealership on Salwa Road, near Ramada Junction, were hit with the same penalty.

Closed Honda dealership.
Closed Honda dealership.

Each time, consumers expressed disappointment in the dealerships, saying their trust had been rattled when it came to buying cars in Qatar.

However, some in the auto industry have suggested that the transgressions may not be as serious as they sound.

Speaking to Doha News at February’s Qatar Motor Show, Declan McCluskey – the general manager at Saleh Al Hamad Al Mana Co., which operates the local Nissan dealership – said that the incident related to two Nissan Sunnys.

“One had a scratch on the front bumper, and the other on the rear. Damages like these occur all the time as cars are being transported from manufacturers to retailers, and as a distributor, we fix the cars before putting them in the showroom,” he said. “All prior damages are disclosed to any potential buyer. In this case, one member of the staff forgot to mention the damages, and when the (inspectors checked our books, it came to light.”

Companies that do not make consumer aware of prior repairs are apparently violating Article 7 of Law No. 8 of 2008.

This provision obligates suppliers to provide information on the type, nature and components of a product on its label. According to the law, suppliers are also prohibited from describing, advertising or displaying products using false or deceptive information.

Toyota’s service centers and other locations appear to be unaffected by the latest closures.

To file complaints about suspected breaches in the consumer protection law, residents can call the MEC at 8005000 or email info@mec.gov.qa.

Thoughts?

18 COMMENTS

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Shanawaz
Shanawaz
6 years ago

What a shame ? How can one buy cars with trust? Mere shutdown is insufficient; people should be compensated for being cheated.

Khalifa
Khalifa
6 years ago
Reply to  Shanawaz

My friend’s car got checked in a garage 1 month after he bought it from the dealership, they told him it was repainted in 2 different locations.

Mr. Reason.
Mr. Reason.
6 years ago

Damn!

Yacine
Yacine
6 years ago
Reply to  Mr. Reason.

You just bought one from them? Poor you!

Mr. Reason.
Mr. Reason.
6 years ago
Reply to  Yacine

Na man not a toyota guy 🙂

Yacine
Yacine
6 years ago
Reply to  Mr. Reason.

Haha good for you! me too and my German brand hasn’t been caught cheating yet. Let’s wait and see 🙂

thedrizzle96
thedrizzle96
6 years ago

I wonder how the new law that was mentioned on here the other day about opening up the sale of cars by non-exclusive dealers; certainly make it more difficult to enforce, but it begs the question if more competition and lower prices will make consumers less inclined to care about touched up shipping marks

terracotta
terracotta
6 years ago
Reply to  thedrizzle96

the law was passed in 2002.

greg
greg
6 years ago

How can we know if the new car has been repainted before buying it?

Yacine
Yacine
6 years ago
Reply to  greg

You can’t . You have to buy it first and then take it for inspection.

Akmal farah
Akmal farah
6 years ago
Reply to  greg
Saleem
Saleem
6 years ago

So far how many dealers have been shutdown? Aside from Al Mana and Abdul Ghani, has there been more?

Yacine
Yacine
6 years ago
Reply to  Saleem

Nissan, Toyota, Honda, and Dodge

al-Lalal
al-Lalal
6 years ago

The problem is that the buyer doesn’t know if the damages and repairs were major, or just a minor touch-up. The seller should pay for independent inspections for all cars sold and make restitutions for lost value; that would teach them a lesson.

terracotta
terracotta
6 years ago

the notice says two weeks, then how it becomes 1 month?

Big Sumo
Big Sumo
6 years ago

They should be shutdown for selling cars with indicators that don’t seem to work

R.D.H
R.D.H
6 years ago
Reply to  Big Sumo

and full beam that seems to start flashing when you speed

Whatever
Whatever
6 years ago
Reply to  Big Sumo

Gulf Spec
– No indicators
– High beams always flashing
– Fog lights permanently on
– Loose steering causing constant random lane changes
-Blacked out windows for bad visibility

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