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rustomatic
rustomatic Reader
4/29/21 2:39 p.m.

Just know what you're buying.  I've owned several of these over the years, and I never uncovered something that I thought was terrible or fishy.  I own one now; the only reason that it was "salvaged," which is called "rebuilt" in my current state, is because I bought it from a guy who owned a recycler (junker).  He bought it through his business, via auction (at auction because of probate sale).  At any rate, there was never any wreck, but I'm stuck with a stupid title that will forever render the value lower . . .

Curtis73 (Forum Supporter)
Curtis73 (Forum Supporter) MegaDork
4/29/21 4:46 p.m.

In reply to rustomatic :

Much truth.  Ex wife had a Tercel that was depreciating fast.  I kept the full coverage for two reasons: A) I figured as soon as I dropped it, it would get stolen or crunched, and B) my ex was a terrible driver.

It got a ton of hail damage.  Nothing wrong with it, just looked like a golf ball.  I made a claim, they totaled it and offered me a $500 buy back.  So I got a check for $2500 which was $3500 minus deductible (500) minus my buyback (500) and I kept the car.  We shopped for a new something while the car sat on CL for 9 months for $800 figuring I'd take the first $500 offer.  I never even got lowball offers, just nothing.  I had one college student interested for a while, but it was in L.A.  Why would anyone look at an R-title Tercel when there were thousands of other cheap econoboxes for sale in L.A. metro that didn't have an R-title?  People didn't even view it as something they could get for cheap because of the title, they completely ignored it

She finally drove it into a concrete wall on the 134 in Pasadena (she was fine) and I was there before the tow truck with the title.  I yanked the stereo out of the dash, signed the title, and off it went.

AnthonyGS (Forum Supporter)
AnthonyGS (Forum Supporter) Dork
4/30/21 12:02 a.m.

You will never overcome the stigma that insurance companies and Carfax have put on these cars.  Never.  They did it in order to maximize their profits, but people today no less than zero about cars.  I have a meme handy that I may post later.

In the early 70s owners manuals told you how to adjust the valves, now they tell you not to drink the contents of the battery.  The same people that need to be told not to drink the contents of the battery work in insurance and believe a Carfax is 100% gospel truth.   A tire shop and Carfax just burned me for several grand at least. 

I also have a Miata with an R title that will never sell for what it should  Why?  A super mild rear ender that the insurance deemed a total loss.  The only part that needed to be replaced is filler panel between the tail lights. 

Dealers and insurance companies don't want John Q. Public or Mary J. Public driving a perfectly rebuilt old car when he can drive a brand new car instead! 

I've also lost count of how many severely damaged and poorly repaired cars I've seen with clean titles and clean Carfax reports too.  I actually drove 700 miles to pick up a clean correct color Laguna Blue Miata NA chassis to replace my R titled tub only to find out it had been hit harder in many more spots and poorly repaired.  It had a Clean title, clean Carfax and was a terrible car.  The body work was so poor that parts of the bondo had fallen off and it was rusting in the damaged areas.

Honestly, R title cars are never worth the hassle, not even the good ones. 

 

californiamilleghia
californiamilleghia SuperDork
4/30/21 12:15 p.m.
AnthonyGS (Forum Supporter) said:

Honestly, R title cars are never worth the hassle, not even the good ones. 

Problem is they are probably worth 40-50%  of  low retail , but sellers want 80% , 

I buy   my driver cars with the idea that I will be the last owner , and pic a part will get them after me , 

so a branded title is not going to matter , but this was Pre Covid , who knows anymore ?

 

Curtis73 (Forum Supporter)
Curtis73 (Forum Supporter) MegaDork
4/30/21 12:23 p.m.

In reply to AnthonyGS (Forum Supporter) :

My Tercel wouldn't sell because of R-title due to hail damage, but I once helped a guy fix a W210 that had been T-boned but never reported.  The W210 had a clean title even though it had been nearly folded in half, but my Tercel golf ball?  Must be avoided because "R"

Curtis73 (Forum Supporter)
Curtis73 (Forum Supporter) MegaDork
4/30/21 12:26 p.m.
californiamilleghia said:
AnthonyGS (Forum Supporter) said:

Honestly, R title cars are never worth the hassle, not even the good ones. 

Problem is they are probably worth 40-50%  of  low retail , but sellers want 80% , 

I buy   my driver cars with the idea that I will be the last owner , and pic a part will get them after me , 

so a branded title is not going to matter , but this was Pre Covid , who knows anymore ?

 

Worth has nothing to do with it.  When you reduce your viable purchasing audience to nearly zero, what people actually pay is far from that 40-50% worth that some website might say.

Is a Tacoma with the same mileage really worth twice a comparable Colorado or Ranger?  Nope.  It's just that people are willing to pay more.

AnthonyGS (Forum Supporter)
AnthonyGS (Forum Supporter) Dork
4/30/21 2:17 p.m.
californiamilleghia said:
AnthonyGS (Forum Supporter) said:

Honestly, R title cars are never worth the hassle, not even the good ones. 

Problem is they are probably worth 40-50%  of  low retail , but sellers want 80% , 

I buy   my driver cars with the idea that I will be the last owner , and pic a part will get them after me , 

so a branded title is not going to matter , but this was Pre Covid , who knows anymore ?

 

And there's the problem.  You made a blanket statement that they are worth 40-50% of retail.  I own a really nice super clean Miata worth more than many with clean titles that has had far less damage over it's lifetime.  
 

There are scads of classic muscle cars that sell for big bucks that would be worthless if the R title was a thing 25 years ago.  

R titles are a thing because insurance companies, auto makers and municipalities make money on it and we live in an overly litigious society.  

Each used car is it's own unique case.  Making blanket statements about values based on lazy insurance company policy is short sighted.  It also legitimizes the problem.  
 

And you know who suffers for it?  You the car hobbiest.  
 

This is also why it's never worth the hassle.  Once the internet says it's only worth half without considering any details, details no longer matter.  

Loweguy5 (Forum Supporter)
Loweguy5 (Forum Supporter) Reader
5/1/21 8:04 a.m.

In reply to Blaise :

Speaking as someone working in the car business 20+ years, run screaming from R cars.  First off, the general rule of thumb in the business is that a repaired "R" car is worth half.  That's why you see so many cars with a market value of $14k looking to get $11.  They are trying to make a profit.

They leave you with a much narrower market when you are ready to sell.  Say you buy the nice $14k car and something happens and you need to dump it quickly.  Many dealers will write you a check on the spot.

With an R, that will not happen and it may take months to find a buyer.  If you are going to build an off the road full on track car, I endorse rebuilds.  Otherwise I stay far far away from them.

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