An Auckland motor vehicle dealer has been ordered to pay a woman $45,000 for selling an unsafe, "DIY home-built-venture" motorhome.

Annemieke de Jong purchased the $45,000 Toyota Coaster motorhome on December 1, 2016 from Lifestyle Cars Limited on Trade Me after selling her home to travel around New Zealand.

The Trade Me listing advertised the motorhome as being very tidy and well looked after, saying "you could easily live in it for a long time".

However, less than two weeks after the purchase, de Jong emailed Lifestyle Cars to point out some problems with it.


She claimed the fridge, hot water boiler and fresh water tank were defective, while the doors and awning cover were faulty.

Having taken the vehicle to Total Autobody for a repairs cost estimate, de Jong was advised that there were serious safety issues with the vehicle and that wiring onboard was not only inadequate but unsafe.

Stephen Daly of Total Autobody provided a full report to the tribunal, concluding that it was not safe and would not comply with current regulations.

Daly described the vehicle as a "DIY home-built venture".

Lifestyle Cars director Robert Antunovich praised Daly's report as a "fairly thorough assessment" and did not wish to take issue with any of the findings or conclusions reached.

In its ruling, the Motor Vehicles Disputes Tribunal said the condition of the motorhome failed to comply with the guarantee of acceptable quality under s 18 (3) (a) of the Act.

The tribunal said it did not think that a reasonable consumer would regard this vehicle as acceptable with the defects that had been identified.

The tribunal upheld de Jong's decision to reject the vehicle and ordered Lifestyle Cars to refund her the full $45,000.