NEVER, EVER, EVER take ANYONE'S word about a used car!! I don't care who it is. I've seen this happen time and time again in my career. With Carfax doing title searches is easier than ever. Most importantly, take the vehicle to a mechanic and have it checked out. It will be the best $100 you could spend.
92 Volvo 740 Wagon aka "Mutt mover"