Used Truck For Sale?

So you've seen a truck for sale and it looks like it's perfect for your business. The best thing you can do before purchasing a used truck is to check its vehicle history. Fortunately this is easy - all you need to do is enter the number plate or VIN in the field above and you will get a report showing odometer history, registration and RUC status, make, model, colour and more.

Before you even waste your time taking a drive of a truck, do a preliminary check.

Truck trailers

Trailer units should also be checked before purchase as they can have issues which mean you should not purchase them. Again, all you have to do is enter the number plate in the field above.

What can go wrong when purchasing a truck or trailer?

The main four issues you should be aware of:

  • Security interests
    These are unpaid loans secured against a truck or trailer. If you purchase it before the loan is cleared, there's a risk the finance company may repossess the truck or trailer to pay off the loan. There's nothing you can do about this, other than pay off someone else's loan yourself
  • Odometer fraud
    Older units are at risk of odometer fraud. It might say 200,000km, but it could have done 400,000km, so double check that the WoF/CoF history is solid, and that there are no warnings.
  • Wanted by the police
    It may sound implausible, but many stolen vehicles, including vans and trucks, are attempted to be sold by the thieves each year. If you buy a stolen truck or trailer, it will be repossessed and returned to its rightful owner, and you won't get any compensation
  • Imported damaged
    Some vehicles are imported damaged. If this is the case, you will need to check repairs have been carried out thoroughly and properly.

Minor issues you should be aware of:

  • RUC/Registration expiry
    This is easy to fix, but you don't want to have to pay any outstanding fees yourself
  • Incorrect details listed
    This can be changed by filing an MR16 form at an NZTA outlet such as a Postshop.

What types of truck can you check?

Tractor units and trailers by companies such as Mack, Freightliner, White or Kenworth. Dump trucks, logging trucks, pickup trucks and other general purpose trucks - anything with a road registration. Flatbed trucks, delivery trucks, vans, tipper trucks, horse trucks and other commercial vehicles in class 3 to 5.

Whether you're buying a small flatbed or a big tractor unit, don't purchase a truck before you have checked it out thoroughly.


We recommend that if you are in the trucking industry that you check out the NZ Trucking Association. Buying a used truck? Check any truck's history and information by entering the number plate into our web site.