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Tips for buying a car online #4802697
07/01/18 09:20 PM
07/01/18 09:20 PM
Joined: Jan 2017
Posts: 632
Melbourne, Florida
RichardS Offline OP
RichardS  Offline OP
Joined: Jan 2017
Posts: 632
Melbourne, Florida
the Buick is having continued, worsening transmissiom issues.

So itís newer car time, and I know I want a plug-in hybrid/electric of some sort. Iíd also like to be under 15-18k $, limiting my options to the volt and genlll prius plug-in (PiP).

Lots of volts here in central Florida, but hardly any PiPs, and most of them under 75,000 miles are in the center of the country or west coast.

What are the sort of things I should be asking the seller/dealership to ensure that I donít fly 2,000 miles from home and find out the car isnít what was represented.

All I can think of are a CarFax, and service records. Surely there are more, but none I can think of that a seller would agree on to close a sale with a stranger, especially a dealership salesperson.

Thanks everybody.


2008 Dodge Caliber SE 2.0 117k
4qt Imeditsu 0w-20, 1/2qt Mobil SS 5w-20 Fram HM

2003 Buick Century 107k
4.5q Havoline 5w-30 HM Fram XG
Re: Tips for buying a car online [Re: RichardS] #4802708
07/01/18 09:36 PM
07/01/18 09:36 PM
Joined: Feb 2009
Posts: 17,156
Michigan
daves87rs Offline
daves87rs  Offline
Joined: Feb 2009
Posts: 17,156
Michigan
Some of the bigger dealerships usually give you some time (3 days to a week,and/or so many miles) to give it back if it doesn't work. Have one of those about 19 miles from me. They tend to be an honest dealership for the most part, think they have only got one car back over the years.....

Think finding the right place would be the toughest part. Can't hurt to give them a call though...


Coming together is a beginning; keeping together is progress; working together is success.

Henry Ford
Re: Tips for buying a car online [Re: daves87rs] #4802716
07/01/18 09:42 PM
07/01/18 09:42 PM
Joined: Jan 2013
Posts: 161
Lake County, Ohio
ls973800 Offline
ls973800  Offline
Joined: Jan 2013
Posts: 161
Lake County, Ohio
Arrange to have an inspection done by an independent garage other than the dealership. The PPI (Pre Purchase Inspection)should cost around $100.00-$150.00 from what I have read. Yelp and Google can be used to find a shop local to the dealership where the car is. Make sure they not only check mechanical but also for paint and or body work.

Re: Tips for buying a car online [Re: RichardS] #4802719
07/01/18 09:46 PM
07/01/18 09:46 PM
Joined: Aug 2004
Posts: 19,990
CA
The Critic Offline
The Critic  Offline
Joined: Aug 2004
Posts: 19,990
CA
I am not familiar with the Volt, but the Prius Plug-ins can have some of the same issues as the regular Prius. Oil consumption, EGR clogging and headgasket failure (at high-ish mileage) The plug-in only makes the replacement battery more expensive, and the electric-only range is quite frankly, a joke.


2011 Toyota Prius - 173k - Various 0W-20 (Brew)
2007 Honda Accord 2.4 - 131K - Mobil 1 EP HM 5W-30
Re: Tips for buying a car online [Re: RichardS] #4802722
07/01/18 09:53 PM
07/01/18 09:53 PM
Joined: Apr 2012
Posts: 5,168
MA
Wolf359 Offline
Wolf359  Offline
Joined: Apr 2012
Posts: 5,168
MA
Yeah, usually when people buy long distance, you get a PPI at the dealership of the make of the car so they can scan for manufacturer specific error codes plus they know the model so can check for problems that normally occur on that model. You should also get someone else who can look at the car for you. When I was shopping for a car, I limited myself to a 500 mile range, but ended up buying a car a little over 200 miles away. That way I was able to check out the car myself. That's basically so you can spot things like mismatched paint/body panels and decide for yourself if you want to move forward or not.

Re: Tips for buying a car online [Re: RichardS] #4802734
07/01/18 10:05 PM
07/01/18 10:05 PM
Joined: Jan 2017
Posts: 632
Melbourne, Florida
RichardS Offline OP
RichardS  Offline OP
Joined: Jan 2017
Posts: 632
Melbourne, Florida
Dave,
Most of them do have a 3 day grace period, and I figured Iíd ask for one during negotiations if not. I dislike haggling on the price, so figured Iíd be happy with the sticker price if they give me a grace period. Iím just hoping to avoid finding out the bad news post-purchase.

Ls,
Great idea! Toyota offers one, so if itís coming from a no-name dealership, that would make it easy. Theyíd be East her good at identifying mild salt damage, Iíd suspect.

The_Critic,
Yes, the plug-in distance is something like 11 miles. Iím not too worried about that, my commute is only 12.5 miles round trip. The volt has a higher range, but once the ICE is on, the mpg is almost 20 miles less per gallon. The mpge of both are very similar, just with a much higher 110v charge time on the volt as compared to the Prius (3hrs on the Prius, 10-12 hrs for the volt).. Do you happen to know off the top of your head the head-gasket issue starts to become a possibility? The standard models Iíve seen offered have had much higher-than-average for a car that age mileage on the odometer. Iíve been surprised to see cars less than 5 years old with 200,000 miles or more.


2008 Dodge Caliber SE 2.0 117k
4qt Imeditsu 0w-20, 1/2qt Mobil SS 5w-20 Fram HM

2003 Buick Century 107k
4.5q Havoline 5w-30 HM Fram XG
Re: Tips for buying a car online [Re: RichardS] #4802740
07/01/18 10:11 PM
07/01/18 10:11 PM
Joined: Jan 2017
Posts: 632
Melbourne, Florida
RichardS Offline OP
RichardS  Offline OP
Joined: Jan 2017
Posts: 632
Melbourne, Florida
Wolf,
Yes, it sounds like a PPI would be a smart first move. I tried to keep my search under 300 miles, but most of them in that area that met my needs either had almost no miles on it (and priced above my budget), or were loaded down with 120,000-200,000 miles I think people in Florida buying hybrids were doing so because of long commutes. So Iíve had to look outside my geographical limit, or take a car that had significant more miles than Iíd like.

Iíd rather travel farther (I fly for free) than take something that doesnít check the correct boxes.


2008 Dodge Caliber SE 2.0 117k
4qt Imeditsu 0w-20, 1/2qt Mobil SS 5w-20 Fram HM

2003 Buick Century 107k
4.5q Havoline 5w-30 HM Fram XG
Re: Tips for buying a car online [Re: RichardS] #4802745
07/01/18 10:20 PM
07/01/18 10:20 PM
Joined: Jan 2011
Posts: 2,944
PV Az
AZjeff Offline
AZjeff  Offline
Joined: Jan 2011
Posts: 2,944
PV Az
You can always see if a local BITOG member can check it out. It happened recently with someone looking at a car in Phx and saved the buyer a trip.


86 Samurai 1.3 leftovers
14 RAV4 2.5 5W-20 PP
16 Silverado 1500 4.3, DI, AFM 5W-30 PP

The most important thing to do in your life is to not interfere with someone else's life. - Frank Zappa

Re: Tips for buying a car online [Re: RichardS] #4802760
07/01/18 10:46 PM
07/01/18 10:46 PM
Joined: Aug 2004
Posts: 19,990
CA
The Critic Offline
The Critic  Offline
Joined: Aug 2004
Posts: 19,990
CA
Originally Posted By: RichardS

The_Critic,
Yes, the plug-in distance is something like 11 miles. Iím not too worried about that, my commute is only 12.5 miles round trip. The volt has a higher range, but once the ICE is on, the mpg is almost 20 miles less per gallon. The mpge of both are very similar, just with a much higher 110v charge time on the volt as compared to the Prius (3hrs on the Prius, 10-12 hrs for the volt).. Do you happen to know off the top of your head the head-gasket issue starts to become a possibility? The standard models Iíve seen offered have had much higher-than-average for a car that age mileage on the odometer. Iíve been surprised to see cars less than 5 years old with 200,000 miles or more.


I would say that anything over 120k is fair game. Not saying it affects all of them, but it can happen. Book time to do one is about 20 hours so the cost far exceeds a hybrid battery. We just had a customer blow one last month, his was a 2012 with 153k. No warning whatsoever. Most of the failure reports on priuschat (and from some other communities) seem to be from vehicles with more than 120k miles.


2011 Toyota Prius - 173k - Various 0W-20 (Brew)
2007 Honda Accord 2.4 - 131K - Mobil 1 EP HM 5W-30
Re: Tips for buying a car online [Re: The Critic] #4802765
07/01/18 11:03 PM
07/01/18 11:03 PM
Joined: Apr 2018
Posts: 165
Wisconsin
Rmay635703 Offline
Rmay635703  Offline
Joined: Apr 2018
Posts: 165
Wisconsin
https://forum.hptuners.com/showthread.php?63020-First-Gen-Volt-Tune-(Volterado)

https://ve.simonandre.ca/module20/

https://www.voltstats.net/Stats/Details/1579

One major repair would wipe out any fuel savings on the PIP.

Further if your normal trip is 12 miles, what are all your trip distances?

Do the math, gas mpgs arenít why you buy a volt or pip, gas avoidance is why.

Next GEN II Volts are as cheap as $13,999 for a 2016, the Gen II gets about the same gas mpgs as a Gen II prii if you live in a warmer climate.

Ah well

Re: Tips for buying a car online [Re: RichardS] #4802907
07/02/18 07:46 AM
07/02/18 07:46 AM
Joined: Apr 2004
Posts: 7,748
New York
pbm Offline
pbm  Offline
Joined: Apr 2004
Posts: 7,748
New York
I know you didn't ask but I would consider a brand new Hyundai IoniqÖ.with the current 0% financing and new car warranty it might actually be cost effective.


'Journalism is Dead'
Re: Tips for buying a car online [Re: RichardS] #4802929
07/02/18 08:18 AM
07/02/18 08:18 AM
Joined: Jan 2017
Posts: 632
Melbourne, Florida
RichardS Offline OP
RichardS  Offline OP
Joined: Jan 2017
Posts: 632
Melbourne, Florida
The_Critic,
20 hours?! Holy [censored].

AZJeff,
Thatís actually a fantastic idea!

RMay,
The farthest I drive during the week is 5.5/6 miles to work, and then the same back home. Excluding Walmart, I have several grocery stores, pharmacies, and dollar stores between my house and office, and require no variance in distance for most of my shopping.

Once a week Iíll usually go to Walmart, and thatís 3.1 miles each way. About the same if I go to target, except target has chargers. So any of the PHEV available would be sufficient to avoid gas in my day-to-day

Now, the reason I care about has MPG is because about every 6 weeks I head to Orlando (140 miles RT), every 4 months to Ft Lauderdale (285 RT), and Tampa twice a year (260ish RT).

Those are long enough distances that no PHEV could do it on battery alone, and that far on gas means that the fuel mpg matters to me.

Pbm,
I wouldnít be opposed, but the Hyundai dealer here in town has only the Ďlimitedí available, and $32,000 is far too expensive for me. I donít want a 5-6 year loan if I can avoid it.


2008 Dodge Caliber SE 2.0 117k
4qt Imeditsu 0w-20, 1/2qt Mobil SS 5w-20 Fram HM

2003 Buick Century 107k
4.5q Havoline 5w-30 HM Fram XG
Re: Tips for buying a car online [Re: RichardS] #4803125
07/02/18 12:30 PM
07/02/18 12:30 PM
Joined: Apr 2018
Posts: 165
Wisconsin
Rmay635703 Offline
Rmay635703  Offline
Joined: Apr 2018
Posts: 165
Wisconsin


Still gotta do the math, I get the above all summer on my twice weekly ďlongĒ trip

Also What speed do you drive?
Both cars are greatly affected by speed but the Prius more so than the volt.

Next you can tune the Gen I Volt for 50mpg operation or 40ish mpg E85 operation.


I have free/nearly free charging on both ends.

If you scope out your destinations you may find what I have
THAT you can destination charge, even on a 240 mile round trip you may find mathematically that your cost per mile is within the margin of error between cars.

Last edited by Rmay635703; 07/02/18 12:30 PM.
Re: Tips for buying a car online [Re: RichardS] #4803307
07/02/18 04:02 PM
07/02/18 04:02 PM
Joined: Jan 2017
Posts: 632
Melbourne, Florida
RichardS Offline OP
RichardS  Offline OP
Joined: Jan 2017
Posts: 632
Melbourne, Florida
Thank you for the links, btw.

My speed varies based on traffic and number of lanes. Light traffic and 3 lanes, Iíll do 55 (the legal minimum), if there are only 2 lanes, or traffic is heavy enough that I become an obstacle that canít be easily passed, Iíll do 70, the legal max.

Sounds like with the appropriate tune, the volt might smoke the Prius thanks to the larger battery capacity.


2008 Dodge Caliber SE 2.0 117k
4qt Imeditsu 0w-20, 1/2qt Mobil SS 5w-20 Fram HM

2003 Buick Century 107k
4.5q Havoline 5w-30 HM Fram XG
Re: Tips for buying a car online [Re: RichardS] #4803411
07/02/18 06:31 PM
07/02/18 06:31 PM
Joined: Jan 2017
Posts: 632
Melbourne, Florida
RichardS Offline OP
RichardS  Offline OP
Joined: Jan 2017
Posts: 632
Melbourne, Florida
Pbm,
Just for kicks and giggles, I stopped in the Hyundai dealer on my way home. Plug-in versions arenít available on the east coast. But I did give one a spin, and I shouldnít have. Far nicer driving experience then what Iíve noticed in the Prius. But also $32k for the limited model, and they didnít have a blue, or SEL package on the lot.


2008 Dodge Caliber SE 2.0 117k
4qt Imeditsu 0w-20, 1/2qt Mobil SS 5w-20 Fram HM

2003 Buick Century 107k
4.5q Havoline 5w-30 HM Fram XG
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