The owner of a servicing company for luxury cars is admitting he "might have" driven his customer's Lamborghini at speeds of up to 170km/h.
Aucklander Chris Mosley was the proud owner of the country's first twin turbo Lamborghini.
He bought the 2017 model Huracan Avio, which is valued at $479,000, earlier this year through his company DNSNZ Imports.
He had hoped Taupo tuning business Power Torque could transform his pride and joy into a faster and lower machine. The car was the first of its kind in the country and was being fixed with a kit the company had imported from the US.
But according to Power Torque owner Chris Timmerman the business deal quickly went "pear shaped" and Timmerman is now threatening to sue Mosley for defamation and $58,000 of unpaid bills.
Timmerman said Mosley texted him about the extra parts for the car arriving on July 25. He started working on it at the start of August.
"Obviously I get really excited - I'm a German-Italian petrolhead," he said.
He and his team at Power Torque fast-tracked the work and Mosley picked up the modified car from the garage several weeks later.
He initially seemed happy with the work, Timmerman said, which was of an "extremely high" quality. But soon after this Mosley discovered several issues with the modifications as well as the process undertaken by Timmerman's team.
Mosley said he assumed the company would run his luxury car on a dyno machine as part of the tuning process, as well as running it briefly on the road.
"But when I picked the car up from them it had another 600km on the speedo than it did when I dropped it off", he said.
He said he also discovered it had been driven at speeds of up to 170km/h.
Unbeknown to the team at Power Torque, Mosley said he had an aftermarket GPS system, which showed him the car had been driven to Rotorua and back - twice.
The car enthusiast assumed Timmerman's team had taken his car on a joy ride and he wasn't happy about it.
Mosley wasn't sold on the company's claim that most of the added mileage was done on the dyno machine, either. He said his suspicions were confirmed when weeks later he noticed a picture of his Lamborghini down a side street in Rotorua.
When asked by the Herald if he or his workers had driven the car at speeds of 170km/h, Timmerman was hard to pin down.
"We might have.
"But we pay a lot for insurance," he said.
Timmerman said the abusive text messages and Facebook posts started in early October.
A post on Facebook with "wild" accusations about what his team had done with the car was particularly damaging to his client base, he said.
"We've done some calculations and I think the total damage - not taking into account the damage to my reputation - is 200K plus."
Timmerman said he was also shocked to discover Mosley had a "really nasty past" full of drugs, money and jail time.
He had been jailed around a decade ago for dealing class A drugs and carrying a pistol.
"He said he has learnt from his past and is bettering himself ... but I find that really hard to believe," Timmerman said.
He had employed the services of a lawyer, who had sent a letter to Mosley demanding payment of an outstanding $58,000 and threatening defamation action for the Facebook posts.
The letter also said Timmerman was calculating the damage suffered, which was expected to be "significant".
Timmerman had also filed a police report about Mosley's threats and intimidation online.
Mosley, on the other hand, said he'd spoken to the Motor Trade Association about the incident. He said he felt that he'd been wronged but he had all but given up on the company rectifying the situation.
"The damage has been done."