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Old 04-19-2006, 09:21 PM   #1
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Advice on purchasing a used Boxster, please!

Hey all, first time posting here. I recently came across what seems to be a really good deal on a 1999 Boxster. I'm 20 and never really imagined driving a Porsche anytime soon but I can't seem to pass this up! Its a silver 99 Boxster, only 6800 miles, triptronic, for 15k.. The only thing is, it holds a salvaged title. Now, I'd usually steer clear of anything salvaged.. but like I said, I'd hate to pass up such a good deal. I Carfaxed the VIN but it didnt pull up any details except for the fact that it was totaled, and granted a salvaged title in 2000. The mileage stayed consistent on all of the records Carfax provided so I'm pretty sure it's legit. I thought about taking the car into a nearby Porsche dealer for an inspection to see what they come up with but, I'd hate to spend $300 on a car that I'm not even positive about purchasing. Any recommended Porsche specialists around Long Beach, CA?

I have no experience with salvaged cars or even Porsches for that matter. If any of you can share some advice, I would greatly appreciate it. What questions should I ask and what signs should I be looking for. I test drove the car already but I don't really know what I should be looking for.

Thank you in advance!

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Old 04-19-2006, 09:26 PM   #2
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sounds scary. run.
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Old 04-19-2006, 09:37 PM   #3
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bro - first, welcome!

second - unless $15k is your ceiling, you can definitely find some early model 986's with fair mileage and maybe even certified extended porsche warranty for low to mid $20's.

it's very cool to be thinking about a porsche so early in life (a porsche you bought! not one that your mommy or daddy bought for you!), so don't taint it with a salvaged title.

i've heard from other soCal dealers, that Walter's in Riverside is usually their stiffest competition on price. Anway, good luck
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Old 04-20-2006, 04:49 AM   #4
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Dude, there is an old saying with cars. The cheapest one never is. If you buy that car you will run into so many problems down the road and have to spend so much money keeping it running that it will end up being way more expensive than paying 20k for a normal higher mileage one.

Plus you run into the problem of never being able to sell the car either. Nobody in their right mind would buy a salvage porsche. If you do and enjoy it great, but you'll be hard pressed to find another guy like you who would buy it. Thats why the car has had the same mileage since 2000. They fixed it and couldn't find anybody to buy it.


The problem with salvage is they inspect the car etc, but they don't ensure that it will last for any period of time, only that it's OK now. But even with things are off a bit, it causes rubbing here and creeking there, and eventually these problems show up as busted motor mounts, and worn tires, and worn out shocks, door rubbing etc.. ONce a car is smashed up it's never the same.
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Old 04-20-2006, 05:15 AM   #5
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I looked at an 04 with salvaged title, and was advised on this forum to run. I went to junk dealer who name was on title and he showed me pictures before the repair...I RAN!
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Old 04-20-2006, 05:51 AM   #6
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As a dealer, I will just say,



"Be afraid, be very afraid!"
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Old 04-20-2006, 06:29 AM   #7
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If you buy a Porsche at only age 20 you will not having anything else to look forward to in life.

buy an S2000
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Old 04-20-2006, 06:45 AM   #8
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I know how it is - here's this great "deal" and it looks good and you'd have a PORSCHE! But this is seriously a BAD idea. There are only so many things that a mechanic can check. Don't be the sucker the seller is looking for.

More than that, I've discovered that it's not a good idea to try to get in "cheap" into a sportscar. The old saying is, "If you have to ask - you can't afford it". Well, the Porsche saying should be, "If it's all you can afford - you can't afford it". These are expensive vehicles to maintain and insure. A rip in your top and you'll be out $2,000. Blow the engine? That will be a cool $13,000.

Now, if you can afford to maintain it - then you can afford to buy something that isn't a Salvage POS. You can get into a Boxster with decent mileage (less than 50,000) for under $20,000. If you can go mid twenties, you can even pick one up with a warranty.

Don't buy that POS. Don't do it. Move along - nothing to see here.
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Old 04-20-2006, 06:50 AM   #9
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As others have said, be afraid. But to add to that let me point out why you should be more afraid on a boxster as opposed to say a miata. Lets say the top is slightly out of allignment and its rubbing somewhere. Very soon you will need a new top. On a boxster that's about $1,400 on a Miata $400. Something is a bit off on the brakes. On a boxster that's a $600 repair on a Miata $300. In other words repairs on Boxsters (as well as most "high-end" cars) cost more. Thus you are opening yourself up to risk.

The other thing as you said, you don't know how it should feel. I suggest going to a Porsche dealer and test driving a couple of their used cars of approximately the same age. That way you will know what the car should feel like. Because of your age, I would recommend starting the conversation with "I have been looking at this silver 1999 for sale and before I buy it I thought I would see what you had". Then proceed to give them details about the car (EXCEPT the salvage bit, also I would up the price to $20K). That way they see you are a serious buyer and not just looking for a joy ride. Even if you decide not to buy the salavge one, you will walk away with the knowledge of what a good one drives like.
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Old 04-20-2006, 06:59 AM   #10
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Hi,

If you are dependent upon finding a Cheap Porsche in order to own one, then this is not the right Car for you at this time. And this is more germane to the discussion than the viability of a Salvaged Car.

There are many Salvage Cars which are put back together correctly and go on to give many more miles of driving pleasure. In fact, I have a friend who has a side business of buying Salvaged Exotics (Ferraris, Lamborghinis), repairing them properly and Washing the Title through another State before selling them. But, he has experts to call upon and doesn't buy just any Salvage Car, only the ones he knows can be properly restored. He just sold a Lamborghini Diablo which was totalled. He bought the Car for $30k, spent $56k having it properly repaired at a Nationally known Lambo specialist, and sold the Car for $92k. He suffers no moral conflict because he spends the $$ to get the Car right before selling it. In 10 years, he's never had a single dissatisfied customer. I would buy one of his Exotics without hesitation - I drove this Diablo and it's Showroom New in Fit, Finish, Performance, and Feel.

That said, having a Salvage Title will always have you looking over your shoulder, wondering if some future breakdown or failure is the result of the Car not having been properly restored or whether it's a normal failure. This is no way to enjoy owning a Porsche.

Bite the Bullet and either wait until you can afford a non-salvaged Car or carry a loan on one. As mentioned, you have plenty of time to get a proper Car which you won't have to spend needless energy worrying about...

Happy Motoring!... Jim'99
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Old 04-20-2006, 09:09 AM   #11
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"He suffers no moral conflict because he spends the $$ to get the Car right before selling it."

That is the biggest load of bull**************** I have ever heard.

Your friend should be a politician. Morals like that are right at home in Washington DC.

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Old 04-20-2006, 10:03 AM   #12
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Had I bought a $96,000 Lambo (or a $15k Boxster for that matter) with a clean title from State X and found out it was really a salvaged car from state Y that had a lot of body and mechanical work done to it, I'd be hunting your friend down with my lawyer!

There's a place for guys like this. It's called PRISON.
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Old 04-20-2006, 10:12 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brucelee
"He suffers no moral conflict because he spends the $$ to get the Car right before selling it."

That is the biggest load of bull**************** I have ever heard.

Your friend should be a politician. Morals like that are right at home in Washington DC.

Hi,

I hear you... but I didn't say they were My morals... But, in truth, after my Buddy's done with the Cars, they are not at all representative of a Car with a Salvage Title. These cars are quick to be titled as Salvage due to the ENORMOUS cost of setting them right. This also brings up the point that many insurance cos. are pretty free to lable a car as Salvage, which many simply do not deserve.

He's an Airline Pilot and so can fly all over the country seeking out these cars and he uses a Ferrari Restorer from SoCal and a Lambo Restorer from the SF area. Both of these guys are Nationally known and I'm sure you'd recognize the names if I wrote them, which I feel I must keep in confidence, but think of the two most prominant names you know and you'll probably be correct. The Cars undergo a thorough inspection and everything is set straight the right way.

And, he does this more out of a desire to save these cars than merely for profit. Two of his Salvaged Cars have gone on to win National Awards, one at the Corso d'Italiano at Pebble Beach in 2003. There are many Barn Finds in rougher shape, but without the stigma of a Salvage Title once they're restored. If you consider all the Leg work involved and the time delay between acquiring the Car and selling it, any profit he does make equates to much less than taking the same $$ and investing it in short-term Treasury Instruments. Like I said, I might find it hard not to disclose, but I also know that he's doing right by the Cars and the subsequent owners aren't being cheated relative to the Car's condition vs the price they pay, they are fully informed as to the extent of the work done, but he presents the Car with the Clean Title, not the Salvaged one. I suspect some probably would not want to know because of potential resale and the like...

Happy Motoring!... Jim'99

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Old 04-20-2006, 10:22 AM   #14
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" but he presents the Car with the Clean Title, not the Salvaged one. I suspect some probably would not want to know because of potential resale and the like..."

Just so you know, if your buddy was in CA and he was a dealer and he pulled this crap, he likely would end up in jail and having lost his dealer's license.

A dealer would be required to disclose this information in CA, if he knew about it. Failure to do so constitutes fraud and is a felony.

Moreover, the fact that your buddy does this intentionally is all the more agregious.

I don't question YOUR morals Jim, although I see alot of rationalizations in your statements.

I have no issue with a guy who rebuilds salvage title cars AND discloses this information. This allows the buyer to properly value the car.

To intentionally wash the title and then not disclose is pretty blatant fraud.

I really hope you buddy does some jail time someday.

Hey, this sounds harsh but as a dealer, I take this crap seriously!
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Old 04-20-2006, 10:24 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RandallNeighbour
Had I bought a $96,000 Lambo (or a $15k Boxster for that matter) with a clean title from State X and found out it was really a salvaged car from state Y that had a lot of body and mechanical work done to it, I'd be hunting your friend down with my lawyer!

There's a place for guys like this. It's called PRISON.
My sentiments exactly! Actually, I'd likely call my brother back in Jersey and that would be that!

Just kidding, I think!
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Old 04-20-2006, 10:24 AM   #16
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Does your friend disclose to the new owner that he has illegally washed the title across state lines? Does he inform the new owner that a good lawyer with a Nexus database subscription could find the true salvage title in the previous state, making the car worth far less than he paid for it with a clear title?

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