Buy or Not? 2010 Prius V ;Carfax Accident; 1st Owner/Great Maintenance

Discussion in 'Gen 3 Prius Main Forum' started by ElectricSpike, Nov 29, 2015.

  1. ElectricSpike

    ElectricSpike Member

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    Hi All - we need a car, and would love to buy a used Prius and could use some guidance about a particular car.
    Our Needs:
    We get a lot of snow - we will stay with 3rd generation (because of traction issues in 2nd gen.)
    I need a backup camera.
    Bluetooth for hands free phone use is important.
    We are committed to purchasing a Prius from a California Emissions State, for the longer hybrid warranty, as most of the cars we have been looking at have higher miles.

    We've done lots of research.
    For the features we need, a Model 3 and up is needed. We've looked at a few different dealers already. It is hard to find individuals selling 2010+ Priuses. A nearby large used car place that has very good reviews has a few Priuses (Prii?), but most are 2's - we found a 2010 that we really like; it has more than what we need, and it drives quite well. The price is very good, which helps us a lot with 2 kids in college.

    One major issue; there was an accident reported in March, 2012 on the Carfax. Nothing about the accident. No airbag deployment or "frame/unibody" damage listed. However, after the accident the original owner kept the car until now, had all work done on time, at a Toyota dealership. Oil changes at 5,000 on the dot. Any major services completed on time. Looks good (other than the accident) on the Toyota Owners' site, and on the CarFax. Always owned in Massachusetts. We can't ask the original owner. It has good miles (70,000) and great features. It looks well cared for, and the electronics work well. We will be taking it to a Toyota dealer to get it checked out.

    Maybe the accident wasn't that bad. Maybe it was. I wonder if it may not have been "totaled" because it was a year and a half "old" when it had the accident, and would have still have had a lot of value; It is a Prius V, with the LED headlights/light washers (why?)/fog lamps/17 inch wheels (dealer did not know this) along with Safety Connect and Navigation packages. The original MSRP would have been about $30,000. Or, the dealer priced it low because there is an accident report on the Carfax.

    Questions; 1) would you risk this? - would a dealer inspection satisfy you? 2) If there is no "frame" but a "unibody" how is damage determined by visual inspection? 3) I'm concerned that if the airbags did deploy, they could have been replaced by the "bad" airbags. Can the Toyota dealer check for this? There is no information about the accident fix on the Toyota Dealer site, even though all other maintenance work appears to have been done at the Toyota dealer.

    If we purchase, we will buy a second set of 15" rims with snow tires for winter, then switch for the 17" in summer. Costco makes this affordable. Good plan? Thank you for your advice!
     
  2. JimN

    JimN Let the games begin!

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    Welcome. It is either a V-NAV or a V-AT. Does it have the adaptive cruise control? The oil change interval is 10000 miles so it got more attention than most. Do the airbag lights illuminate when the car boots up? Does the front seat passenger trigger the airbag light?

    IMO the car wasn't totaled because the damage wasn't that severe. My 2010 has suffered two "collisions" (the horror!) as documented by the screw marks on the rear bumper cover and the scar from a license plate frame on the front bumper cover. I also had body work because it was sideswiped. Ask a shop to check it out. Pull the crap out from under the deck. Do you see over spray or anything that doesn't look original? You should have a spare tire, jack and a lug nut if it has the worthless locking wheel covers.

    If you can, test drive it in traffic with Radar Cruise Control on. Does it maintain speed & distance? Is it rock steady?

    It has headlight washers because Toyota included them. Maybe they are marginally useful. Mine aren't.

    Is it passes the inspection to your satisfaction then i would buy it if you are happy with the price. Daisy wrote the book on buying a used Prius. Most of it seems to be deciding what you are happy with accepting.

    Keep us posted.
     
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  3. ElectricSpike

    ElectricSpike Member

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    JimN, thanks for the help! Yes, the airbag lights light up. I wish that it had the Radar Cruise Control. It does not have the AT package. But overall it has more than what we are hoping to have, and fewer miles at a lower price.

    One more question - would you trust a Toyota Dealer's maintenance department to understand/evaluate body damage, or would you recommend another inspection at a body shop? I've contacted the Toyota dealer who serviced the car for years, and hopefully they will have more information than is in the Toyota Owner's site about the accident, but who knows if they will share.

    I will have to look at Daisy's posts. Thank you!!!
     
  4. Munpot42

    Munpot42 Senior Member

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    Most Toyota dealers farm out their bodywork, why not just go to a good body shop and pay $100 or so, worth it.
     
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  5. JimN

    JimN Let the games begin!

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    Holman & Liberty have their own body shops. Holman has about a dozen franchises so the body shop could be working on a BMW, a Ford, or a Prius. Holman's shop is located on their Ford property. Liberty has at least Lexus, Toyota & Scion.

    I'd go to the body shop. Can you get any info from your insurance company?

    A V-Nav was uncommon as my region didn't order them.
     
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  6. ElectricSpike

    ElectricSpike Member

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    Well, we are a little sad, but made the choice to not purchase the 2010 Prius V, not Five... The body shop person was fantastic, pointing out where the accident had occurred, where there was a slight mis-match of door versus body, and where there were small leaks because of those mismatches that we had not seen. There was a concern over those leaks and how they might effect the hybrid battery (because of the location of the leaks). There were also mis-matched tires - I'm not sure how much of a big deal that is, but the "service advisor" was concerned.

    We could not get any information on the accident from anyone. Our insurance company could not as well.

    It was comfortable, but there will be other Priuses out there, and maybe we can get a better deal at the end of the month. Thank you all!
     
  7. yeldogt

    yeldogt Active Member

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    So it was the larger hatchback -- That's the v (see below why it is v and not V so as to not confuse this thread). Do you need the larger one? I just bought a Lexus CT -- the back seat is a bit smaller -- we really like it and I see used ones going for good prices. They don't get quite as good MPG and our 11 Prius. -- but still up around 50
     
    #7 yeldogt, Dec 2, 2015
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 2, 2015
  8. Paradox

    Paradox Prius Enthusiast / Moderator
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    No, he is talking about the 2010 V. Notice uppercase V. The 'wagon' began as a 2012 model year and it is a lowercase v as in Prius v. 2010 Used uppercase roman numerals for model designation, then for 2011 it went to Two, Three etc.

    Yep, Toyota screwed that one up, lol.
     
  9. JimN

    JimN Let the games begin!

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    ElectricSpike, well at least you found a good body shop. Keep looking, you never know where one will turn up. Ask for quotes from the truecar dealers & get quotes from the internet sales dept. of your local dealers. Happy hunting.

    My concern about mismatched tires is that a wheel is out of alignment and will continue to chew up a tire forever.
     
  10. Mendel Leisk

    Mendel Leisk Sand Pounder

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    It's funny, our car, a Canadian Touring model, has a lot of the features of the US 2010 V, the LED headlights, 17" rims, fogs, etcetera. And it was in one semi-serious collision, I got hit on the rear drivers side corner, hard enough that the rear suspension was replaced (with all new components), and there was extensive body work on that quarter.

    The car is in perfect shape, no residual driving issues. But still, it's a bit of a crapshoot, you never know.
     
  11. yeldogt

    yeldogt Active Member

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    The naming is confusing ..... it should also be noted that we bought our 2011 --- in January 2012 --- and it had just arrived from Japan. The tsunami delayed the 2012's -- I don't know when the stopped making the 12's ... but they had to keep making the 11's past what is normal.

    I got extremely good tire life out of the 17' tires -- 90k .... and I like the LED headlights. The fogs are worthless and the inability to get the sunoof on our "five" did not matter .. as I did not want the sunroof. IMO the 1k price increase for a base "five" is worth the cost over the "Four". They did not make all that many.
     
  12. ElectricSpike

    ElectricSpike Member

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    Wow, lots of great input from this board. Thanks! I meant the 2010 Prius V, the liftback. I like the LED headlights as well, yeldogt. I've heard a lot about the headlight bulbs in the 4 and lower blowing quite a bit (and have seen many "replacements" when looking at a potential car's service/maintenance records on the Toyota Owners' site). We are looking for at least a model III/3 in a 2010+ - funny how the 2015 model 2 comes with everything we want - backup camera and bluetooth. I actually find the later models much more confusing to "figure out" what they come with - there are so many more choices.
     
  13. yeldogt

    yeldogt Active Member

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    I was just about to purchase another Prius Five a couple of months ago. I could buy it for a bit over 2k cheaper then I did the last one almost 4 years ago -- same 0% interest. I wanted the leather interior -- we have many drivers (business) and it gets a lot of use -- the leather is easier to keep clean. The only way to get the leather is to move up to a Four. The new ones don't have leather it's a vinyl. With all the glass I really did not need or want the expense of the sunroof ... so for the price of a Four w/o the roof .. I get the Five with the LED headlights/ wheels/ tires and worthless fogs.

    I ended up with the CT this time --- I'm sure we will buy another Prius when the 11 gets too many miles on it. I don't need the larger cargo area of the Prius v (lowercase v for the Prius v wagon).
     
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