Caperix New Reader
10/16/22 8:59 a.m.

I have been on the lookout for a facelift, 2009 to 2012 BMW e91 wagon with sport package for some time now.  I found one at a used car lot 2.5 hours away, so after confirming they still had it I drove up to take a look at it.

When I got there & found the car it was covered in pine needles like it had been sitting for months.  The car had every light in the dash on with a long crank.  I suspect broken vanos bolts but they said its a crank sensor that they will install tomorrow & they have just been clearing it.  Why If someone said they were driving a long distance to look at a car they would not make sure that it runs first is beyond me.

Needless to say I am still looking for a car.

TJL (Forum Supporter)
TJL (Forum Supporter) Dork
10/16/22 10:01 a.m.

I like that they admitted they were just clearing the codes to try to sell it. Classy. 

when i worked at a ford dealership(and its this way at about all dealerships), if a trade in would pass the safety inspection,  the dealership sold it. If the vehicle had too many issues to fix, it was sent to auction and ended up on a buy here/pay here lot. So, i automatically ignore anything at a small lot. 

buzzboy SuperDork
10/16/22 10:54 a.m.

I bought my BMW from a small town small lot(not a BHPH though). I'm not going to say he was disingenuous but I'm pretty sure the AC was charged right before my visit and the tires were 9 years old. I think I'll stick to private sellers whenever possible.

einy (Forum Supporter)
einy (Forum Supporter) Dork
10/16/22 2:51 p.m.

My brother just had two different 2 Series BMW's delivered to his home by Carvana.  First one puked oil all over his garage floor on its first night there.  Second (replacement) one arrived with a Christmas tree display of warning light illuminated.  He's punting with that supplier and looking elsewhere instead.

AnthonyGS (Forum Supporter)
AnthonyGS (Forum Supporter) UberDork
10/16/22 8:12 p.m.

Repair shops are no different these days.  I just found out they will have my car another month. They've had it two weeks and done zero except back and forth with insurance.  To top it off, zero body damage.  It's not a difficult job but they are going to make it hard.  

triumph7 HalfDork
10/16/22 8:37 p.m.

Hey, at least the car actually existed!

A few years back we were looking for a Miata and found one at a really good price.  I called and discussed the car with a sales rep up to the point of giving a credit card number to hold the car.  After driving from Cincinnati to Chicago, we got five different stories of where the (nonexistant) car was.  "Oh, we will help you out with any other car on the lot!"  Do you have another Miata?  "Well, no."  Then you can't really help us, can you? 

To rub salt in the wound, we hit a pot hole, well more of a crater, on an Illinois interstate that bent two wheels on MY Miata.

Tyler H
Tyler H UberDork
10/17/22 10:48 a.m.

Unless you need creative financing options, used car lots aren't selling what you're buying.  The cars and prospective buyers are going to have some baggage.

volvoclearinghouse UltimaDork
10/17/22 10:55 a.m.

I had an OK experience at a local small dealership.  I was looking for a truck to replace my well-worn out '93 K3500.  Trucks were tough to find in any condition, for a decent price.  I found the exact spec truck - crew cab, long bed, full ton, single real wheel, 4 wheel drive, gas engine - I wanted, called the guy, went up to see it, he let me test drive it, and I bought it and drove it home.  It wasn't perfect, it had a cracked mirror and was throwing a TPMS light and a service trailer brake light, but it was as-advertised and has been pretty reliable for me.  It failed MD inspection due to a non-functioning parking brake, which I fixed, but otherwise I feel like I got an OK deal in a tough market.  

Toyman! MegaDork
10/17/22 11:02 a.m.

I've bought several cars from small lots.

One is a small lot that stocks work trucks and such down the street from my office. I've bought 4 vehicles from him over the years. Zero issues, reasonable prices, and easy purchases.

The other is down the street from my house. I bought two from him. Again, zero issues, reasonable prices, and easy purchases. 

I also bought my last car from Carvana. The price was a little high but zero issues and probably the easiest vehicle purchase I've ever done. I'm shopping them for a minivan for the wife now. 

Don't count out the little dealers. They aren't all bad. Much like private sellers, there are some you don't want to deal with and there are some you do. I'd rather deal with them than the sales idiots at Rick Hendrick. 

I will say, don't finance with them. Bring cash. 

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