Lack of conformity and hidden defect of a vintage vehicle

7 janvier 2022 Equipe rédactionnelle

Lack of conformity and hidden defect of a vintage vehicle

Garantie des vices cachés et la prescription de cinq ans





Collector’s car enthusiasts, you must be especially vigilant when purchasing these passionate vehicles.

Passion makes you blind …

This common sense phrase should be in the mind of the collector’s vehicle enthusiast.


He knows that such an object of pleasure, which derives its quality from a maximum approach to its original state, must be over 30 years old.
Which means that the weight of the years has shifted to the bodywork including the underbody, the engine, and items of equipment such as engine light gauges and the like.


Before buying, this enthusiast blinded by this long-awaited vehicle will have to regain lucidity and perspicacity in order to better appreciate the qualities and faults of the coveted object.


Systematically, the judges recall in fact that the purchaser of a vintage vehicle must « be particularly vigilant » or « must carry out a meticulous inspection » and not rely on the mention of an advertisement « very good interior condition and exterior ”, eminently subjective, but not susceptible to being retained to consider that the vehicle, not presenting these qualities, does not conform.


The concepts of hidden defect or of compliant delivery, qualifying for the first the impropriety for the use for which it is intended or the reduction thereof and for the second a lack of conformity to the promised specifications, receive a strict interpretation in this case. collection vehicles.


Indeed, unlike recent automobiles, vintage cars are not intended to cover tens of thousands of kilometers per year on a daily basis at sustained (but legal!) Speeds.


However, these collector’s vehicles must fulfill a use which is admittedly limited but corresponding to that envisaged at the time of their purchase: leisure, tourist rally, exhibition, even museum.


And any problem prohibiting the use for which the collector’s vehicle is intended will be liable to be considered as a hidden defect or a failure to deliver compliant.


The Courts have already been able to characterize the existence of a hidden defect or a lack of conformity of a vintage vehicle, particularly in the presence of:


Defects conferring a dangerous nature in terms of active and passive safety, such as misalignment of the windshield, faulty fixing of the rear shock absorbers, leakage of the braking system, improper welding, …;

The need to change four shock absorbers, a disorder not detected by the technical control report;

The failure of a calorstat, not revealed by the faulty engine temperature warning light, causing the engine to overheat and then rupture of the cylinder head gasket and damage to the lower engine bearings, crankshaft, and piston bores;

Generalized perforating corrosion, caused by insufficient protection of the sheets linked to manufacturing technologies and designs of the time, masked by the presence of Blackson, in particular for a CITROEN MEHARI or an ALFA ROMEO SPIDER;

Of a JAGUAR type W4 150 ROADSTER 3.40 L whose sales announcement stated « under this huge aluminum hood hides a remodeled engine … Its quality is impeccable, the oil pressure at startup is more of 5.5 kg and does not drop below 6 kg when hot at 1,500 rpm ”but with inadequate assembly of the alternator, with significant noise from the crankshaft at 2900-3000 rpm, oil pressure insufficient or even non-existent at 1000 rpm (at idle), which allowed the judicial expert to conclude that the vehicle did not present the qualities announced in the advertisement.


On the contrary, the Courts have already considered that the collector’s vehicle presented neither hidden defect nor lack of conformity in the presence:


Minor defects (in particular caused by repairs involving poor workmanship) that do not make the vehicle unfit for its destination;

Apparent defects, such as perforating corrosion revealed by a normally careful examination of the visible areas and by a technical check already showing multiple corrosion.

The material is complex and of variable geometry. Therefore, before any purchase, seek advice from an expert specializing in vintage vehicles.

There are some very good ones who can also be Legal Experts, which will always be a plus.

Of course, the intervention of an Expert before the sale will cost you a few hundred euros, but could save you a lot of disappointments.


Be careful, this is not a panacea since, exceptionally, the Expert intervening before the sale may make an error of assessment on the condition of the vehicle.


Our Firm has indeed initiated proceedings against an Expert who gave an erroneous opinion of value of a vehicle from 1977 suffering from perforating corrosion masked by Blackson making it impossible to check the structure, this last point not having attracted the attention of the Expert.

If, unfortunately, your beautiful collector’s vehicle has hidden defect problems or a lack of conformity, seek advice from a Lawyer experienced in automotive matters and expertise.


SIRET ET ASSOCIES, with over 40 years of experience and real expertise in matters of hidden defect and lack of automotive conformity, will be able to provide you with useful advice.



Contact téléphone 02 51 05 38 23 et Mail :



Lack of conformity and hidden defect of a vintage vehicle


SELARL SIRET & Associés – RCS LA ROCHE SUR YON 390 567 519 – Numéro d’Identification Intracommunautaire FR 90390567519

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Avocat vice caché automobile
Avocat vice apparent
Avocat vice difficilement perceptible sans démontage
Avocat vice de fabrication
Avocat vice de conception
Avocat carrosserie structure
Avocat oxydation carrosserie
Avocat corrosion perforante carrosserie
Avocat Déformation de longeron
Avocat défaut d’étanchéité de toit
Avocat défaut de la pompe à huile
Avocat défaut de la pompe d’injection
Avocat défaut du système de freinage
Avocat défectuosité du moteur
Avocat rupture d’une bielle Fuite des injecteurs
Avocat défaillance de la fixation des soupapes
Avocat manque de fiabilité
Avocat défaut de direction
Avocat consommation excessive d’eau


Avocat problèmes de vices cachés
Avocat tromperie professionnel automobile
Obligation de sécurité de résultats du garagiste
Obligation de moyens du contrôleur technique
Professionnel de la vente et de la réparation automobile
Présomption de vice antérieur à la vente
Vice en germe lors de la vente
Dépôt vente Mandataire Mécanicien
Avocat vibrations excessives
Avocat courroie de distribution,
Avocat défaut du volant moteur
Avocat kilométrage trop important
Avocat corrosion du plancher et de la coque
Avocat moteur émettant des fumées importantes
Avocat tromperie, falsification du compteur kilométrique
Avocat droit automobile
Avocat litiges garagiste
Avocat consommation excessive d’huile


Clause de non garantie
Remboursement des prix
Remboursement des frais et des honoraires
Expert judiciaire ou amiable
Protection juridique Vendée
Assurance de protection juridique
Véhicule de collection en état de rouler
Usure anormale du véhicule
Avocat boîte de vitesses
Obligation d’information de l’acheteur
Vices difficilement perceptibles sans démontage
Pourparlers, prolongation du délai de deux ans
Prescription quinquennale
Réitération de panne auto moto
Frais d’Immobilisation automobile
Frais de gardiennage auto
Valeur de remplacement véhicule
Véhicule de remplacement ou véhicule de location
Litiges sur facture d’entretien