Don’t Want To Buy A Rebuilt Salvage Vehicle

Not sure if anyone would be interested in replying, but here goes: looking at a 2008 Toyota Solara w/37K miles. The owner disclosed the rebuilt title and I pulled a CarFax (which I would have done anyway). It was totaled out in 2013 with 19K miles after its 3rd accident – apparently the 1st owner couldn’t drive far w/o crashing the car.

A Rebuilt Salvage Vehicle
A Rebuilt Salvage Vehicle

I’ve driven the car and it feels fine – but then again I’m not sure if I would pick up on an issue that was less than obvious. Current owner put me in touch w/the collision shop owner who bought the car at salvage and did the rebuild work. He tells me there was no damage to the frame although he replaced the hood, left quarterpanel, headlight assembly etc.

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Current owner had seen the pics of the damage but the collision guy doesn’t have them anymore. Per CarFax air bags did not deploy in any of the accidents (not sure if that really tells me anything).

Question: Should it make me feel any better that the car is 18K miles further down the road and seems to be doing fine? My plan would be to keep it for as long as it runs. He’s asking 7K, KBB indicates a private sale px of $9500 in poor condition, so maybe that’s still high. Any thoughts?

Yes, I do, which I would do for sure if I decide to proceed any further. First I want to call my insurance co tomorrow to see if there are limitations on the coverage I can’t live with etc. I’m in MI like you, so I’m wondering – do you know if I can request a copy of the Application for Salvage Value Inspection form (TR-13A) that was filed with the secretary of state? That might give me more confidence in knowing the extent of the repairs that had to be done.

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I don’t know if you can get that or not. But definitely check with the insurance company. And – like I point out in the article – remember that the salvaged designation does not mean it has been cleared as roadworthy etc. It just means that the car is “complete” and was not rebuilt with stolen parts.

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