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Old 06-25-2008, 10:56 AM
 
Location: the D
347 posts, read 1,351,363 times
Reputation: 171

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My wife needs a car, and we're looking to buy a used 2005 car from a dealer.
We have never bought a used car before, so need some advice.

If the car is a lease returned vehicle with only 1 owner, and has done less than 50,000 miles, do I still need to get it checked out by a mechanic?
Or if it is a GM certified car, (yes, we're GM fans ) can I stop worrying about reliability or expensive future repairs?
If it helps, we're looking at Pontiac G6 V6 or Grand Prix base model since these are the only ones in our price range of < $15k
Thanks in advance
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Old 06-25-2008, 11:08 AM
 
Location: Chicago Suburbs
3,199 posts, read 4,292,783 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DDevil View Post
If the car is a lease returned vehicle with only 1 owner, and has done less than 50,000 miles, do I still need to get it checked out by a mechanic?
Still a good idea,it's used and anything could have happened in it's past life.
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Old 06-25-2008, 11:57 AM
 
Location: Southwest Pa
1,440 posts, read 4,389,907 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DDevil View Post
Or if it is a GM certified car, (yes, we're GM fans ) can I stop worrying about reliability or expensive future repairs?
You can never stop worrying about reliability or future repairs. Not on a new car can you stop worrying. One day every vehicle will develop a sudden urge to just................stop.

But you're under the 50k mark, probably some warranty left right?
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Old 06-25-2008, 12:00 PM
 
11,547 posts, read 52,826,824 times
Reputation: 16318
Always get a "pre-purchase" inspection from a mechanic you trust working on your behalf for a used vehicle purchase.

While the GM inspection and franchised dealer selling you the car is better than a private sale to protect you, the "guaranty" on such a deal is no better than the dealer standing behind it. Most of the original manufacturer's warranty will by now have expired, so there's no recourse there.

In my experience, most lease cars are considered to be "disposable" by the lesee, and don't get a lot of maintenance lavished upon them, nor any pride of ownership work. They've simply purchased transportation for a limited amount of time for a fixed price, and don't do anything more than is needed to return the car to the dealership without incurring additional fees at the end of the lease.

50,000 miles, however, is not a lot of mileage on this series of car ... approx 15K miles per year, not excessive. What you purchase in buying a "used" car is the remaining service life, which should be a lot more miles/years.
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Old 06-25-2008, 12:06 PM
 
Location: Kingman AZ
15,370 posts, read 38,932,188 times
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ALWAYS....I REPEAT....ALWAYS....get a carfax report.....it will cost you 30 some dollars for a 3 month subscription but it is well worth it......we passed on 3 cars for my G'son because they turned out to be PROBABLE Katrina cars.......
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Old 06-25-2008, 12:10 PM
 
8,777 posts, read 19,723,788 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dynimagelv View Post
ALWAYS....I REPEAT....ALWAYS....get a carfax report.....it will cost you 30 some dollars for a 3 month subscription but it is well worth it......we passed on 3 cars for my G'son because they turned out to be PROBABLE Katrina cars.......
As much as everyone sings the praises of carfax, they also miss things. Give the Vin# to your insurance agent and tell him to run a C.L.U.E. report on the car. Any payment made by an insurance company will show up on the report.
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Old 06-25-2008, 12:15 PM
 
Location: Kingman AZ
15,370 posts, read 38,932,188 times
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true, if the repairs were done by a small repair shop under "other than" insurance repairs....HOWEVER.....look at the registration history.....if it was registered in NO before Katrina [August 23 2005] and then somewhere else AFTER Katrina....it isn't worth considering.....

MANY of the Katrina cars were sold for salvage and then "repaired" by fly by night shops or individuals.

and within 3 months we'll have to worry about anything from the midwest.....
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Old 06-25-2008, 01:17 PM
 
Location: Londonderry, NH
41,478 posts, read 59,440,679 times
Reputation: 24856
Check the vin numbers as suggested. See if most of the parts are still there. Plan on buying new tires and maybe an alignment.

BTW - I bought my 1992 Buick Roadmaster Wagon for $1,500 5 years ago. It now has 180k miles and had its first would not start incident this week. Not great gas milage (20 mpg in the summer) but the difference between 1500 and 15000 dollars buys a lot of fuel.

Join AAA if you have old, not just used, cars.
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Old 06-25-2008, 01:59 PM
 
Location: the D
347 posts, read 1,351,363 times
Reputation: 171
Quote:
Originally Posted by dynimagelv View Post
ALWAYS....I REPEAT....ALWAYS....get a carfax report....
I have been looking at Carfax reports, and found a car with a report that says:
Accident - October 2005.
Carfax reported this on March 2008.
So if someone was looking at buying this car before march 2008, they probably wouldnt even know.

So looks like it is possible for Carfax to miss records.
As someone advised, the insurance companies can get a better report.

Thanks everyone for your responses, and I will make sure we dont get a car from Katrina land
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Old 06-25-2008, 06:58 PM
 
Location: Eastern NC
20,867 posts, read 23,338,270 times
Reputation: 18808
WhenI bought my Toyota, they had a document that guarenteed that it was not flood damage. It protected me. It is also wise to buy the extended warrenty on a used car because you never know how it was treated.
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