It has come to light that at least one car rental company in Iceland has deliberately rolled back odometers on their vehicles without disclosing the true kilometrage to their customers. Police are investigating the matter, and the company in question contends this was the work of a single employee, who has since left the company.
The matter was brought to light by Kveikur, an investigative news programme on the pubic broadcasting network RÚV. In documents Kveikur received, and in an interview that the whistleblower gave, the company Procar reportedly dialled back odometers on a number of vehicles, sometimes by as much as 80,000km.
Jóhann Fannar Guðjónsson, a lawyer for the Icelandic Automobile Association, emphasised that the practice of rolling back odometers in not only dishonest; it is also potentially dangerous. In addition, it is also not incredibly difficult. Kveikur reported that it took them all of ten minutes to find devices online that can, and do, roll back odometers.
In a statement Procar sent to reporters, they contend that rolling back odometers was the work of a single employee who worked for the company from 2013 to 2015, calling it “an error in judgement” on the employee’s part. That person is no longer with the company nor involved in any of their operations. Furthermore, they contend that an independent party will calculate the amount of restitution that should be paid to former customers of Procar.