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2006 Salvage / Rebuilt, rebuildable title Prius

Discussion in 'Gen II Prius Main Forum' started by dersimden, Jul 1, 2011.

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  1. dersimden

    dersimden New Member

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    I am currently looking to buy my first hybrid car. The prices are a little high for my budget. What are you guys thinking of buying a rebuilt Prius in general? Specifically what do you guys think of the following salvage:

    Attached is the photo of the damage. It has already been rebuilt. Does this 2006 worth around $11K - 50K miles on it?

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  2. cwerdna

    cwerdna Senior Member

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    Unless you have the skills and time to do your own repairs along w/a big budget, I'd walk away. Salvage title cars have virtually no warranty and who knows how good a job those guys did repairing it?

    You could get a car that gives you little or no problems. Or, it could be a nightmare and again, no warranty. Here's a recent story of a guy w/salvage car problems: http://priuschat.com/forums/gen-ii-...a2d-technical-opinion-deeply-appreciated.html.

    http://priuschat.com/forums/gen-ii-prius-main-forum/51021-i-just-acquired-new-project-vehicle.html is an example of case where the owner and his wife had the time and expertise to do their own repairs.
  3. firepa63

    firepa63 Former Prius Owner

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    Stay away from a salvage Prius...
  4. vertex

    vertex Active Member

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    Acutally, the damage on that one looks minor. I am suprised it was a salvage. I rebuilt one, and it has been OK since I finished it 2 years ago. You are getting it at a good price. If you are not knowlegable about body work etc. bring it to a mechanic you trust to make sure it was done properly. You are getting it at a lower price, it might be worth the risk. Also, you should be the type of person who will keep it for a long time, the lower resale value will hit you when you sell it.
  5. edthefox5

    edthefox5 Senior Member

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    The op says it's already rebuilt.

    But I still concur. Don't buy a salvage Prius unless your a wizard
    and a garage full of tools.

    Besides if you can go that amount of money you can get a real nice mint used car.
  6. Patrick Wong

    Patrick Wong DIY Enthusiast

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    Since you felt the need to ask this question, you should not buy a salvage Prius.

    If you are confident that you can deal with the thorny electronics and powertrain issues that may arise from intermittent connections resulting from wiring harness damage and incomplete repair, etc. then it might be OK to purchase such a vehicle.

    Do a search on PriusChat to find several stories from owners who purchased salvage Prius and later found that their cars had subtle problems that could not be resolved. The powertrain, ABS, and SRS systems are among the potential problem areas.
    1 person likes this.
  7. dersimden

    dersimden New Member

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    The car is already rebuilt. The guy who did it is an expert in hybrid cars and mostly works on hybrid engines. He has done many Priuses also. Although he naturally won't give any warranty, the car appears to be in very good shape now. The book value is at over 18K vs the 11K. This is almost 40% off. Looks like a good deal but I really can't decide :ballchain:
  8. dersimden

    dersimden New Member

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    You are right, I don't think I can deal with the electronics and mechanics of this car. As I said above, the rebuilder won't give any warranty, though. I can not decide between all these horror stories and success stories. Looks to me a little like a lottery.
  9. dersimden

    dersimden New Member

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    My budget is around 10,000. What mint used cars did you have in mind within that range (ps. I would like a hatchback)?
  10. dersimden

    dersimden New Member

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    Thank you all BTW for the responses.
  11. seilerts

    seilerts Battery Curmudgeon

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    I agree, the damage does not look too bad. But, the strangest problems to come through here have been salvage title or accident repairs done wrong. I have a friend with a salvage rebuilt 2007 and his only problem is the damned melted rubber on the hatch release, i.e. not related to the accident. The person with the P0A2D code went 25,000 miles before having a problem. Also, if the A/C was not repaired properly or has a slow leak, then that is a potential $2000 repair. It is a crap shoot, which means that you at least need to have some resources in reserve to fix it.

    Speaking of hatchbacks, have you shopped for a Toyota Matrix?
  12. brick

    brick Active Member

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    No way would I buy a salvage Prius, no matter how "good" the deal. Every time an unusual, expensive problem comes through here it relates to a car that was crashed.
  13. vertex

    vertex Active Member

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    Everything we do in life is a gamble. The risks we take are personal decisions. I don't go to casino's, play the lottery or poker. However, I made a calculated risk, bought a "totaled" 2006 Prius in 2008 & fixed it mostly myself, and have no regrets. Did I save enough money to justify the time I spent fixing the car and learning how it works? NO. But I loved the challenge, and enjoyed the project. Now I can help people on PC, what could be better?
  14. RobH

    RobH Senior Member

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    The biggest issue in buying an old or salvaged Prius is where you are going to have it serviced. Dealers don't repair parts, they replace them. That's a very expensive process, and if you must depend on dealers for service, then you're looking at expensive service.

    There are very few non-dealer places to get a hybrid serviced. I used to own a Saab, which despite traditional technology, had the same problem. There were a few dealers, and maybe a half dozen independent shops locally that would even accept the car for any service beyond the most basic. In the end, the car got towed to the wrecking yard with about 85,000 miles on it.

    So I would recommend that you identify the local mechanics who could service a Prius. I certainly wouldn't want to depend on a dealership for servicing a $10,000 car. Obviously the guy who rebuilt the car would be a first choice for future service. Are there any other local shops that deal with hybrids? Just ask anyone with a Prius where they get their service. Chances are high that they've only had scheduled oil/filter/tire service, and have no idea what else needs to be done or its price. Call up a few local shops that service Toyota or other Japanese cars. You might even try places that service Lexus, as they are less likely to be afraid of the technology.

    If you are satisfied that you can get the car serviced by several non-dealer mechanics, then I would tend to say that $11,000 for an $18,000 car is a good deal. A well maintained Prius can easily go 150,000 miles with nothing but scheduled service. Make sure the inverter coolant pump has been upgraded (free at the dealer), and expect to change the 12V battery soon if it hasn't been already. Maybe plan for a $1,000 fix for something not covered by the repairs, but I doubt that you'll have to use it.

    Edit: Oh, and check how many keyfobs the car comes with. The minimum acceptable answer is two. And they have to be already programmed for the car, not just a used one from another car.
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