Thinking of buying a 2005 black prius for about $5900

Discussion in 'Gen 2 Prius Main Forum' started by Kite23, Dec 28, 2014.

  1. Kite23

    Kite23 New Member

    Joined:
    Dec 26, 2014
    4
    0
    0
    Vehicle:
    2005 Prius
    Its a salvaged title and has had the front bumper and hood replaced. The total miles are 108,000. Should I jump on it? I've always been a fan of the prius and have lurked around looking for a cheap buy. Has there been anything wrong with the 2005 models? I know the gen 1 priui had a transmission problem that I've heard of.
     
    #1 Kite23, Dec 28, 2014
    Last edited: Dec 28, 2014
  2. Kite23

    Kite23 New Member

    Joined:
    Dec 26, 2014
    4
    0
    0
    Vehicle:
    2005 Prius
    Bump help a prius believer out?
     
  3. Daddy Dave

    Daddy Dave Member

    Joined:
    Sep 19, 2010
    94
    38
    0
    Location:
    Sheridan, WY
    Vehicle:
    2010 Prius
    Model:
    III
    Check this out. They are very reliable cars. 108k is low miles for a 2005. Keep in mind with the age of the car the HV battery may need to be replaced at some point. Expect $1000 - $1500 if you do the work yourself. The car should go to 300k+ miles easily.
     
  4. Kite23

    Kite23 New Member

    Joined:
    Dec 26, 2014
    4
    0
    0
    Vehicle:
    2005 Prius
    man thats a big jump between the '05 and '06. Was there any reason for the change?
     
  5. JimN

    JimN Let the games begin!

    Joined:
    Nov 26, 2006
    7,028
    1,101
    0
    Location:
    South Jersey
    Vehicle:
    2010 Prius
    Model:
    V
    Why was the car written off? No insurance company is going to total a car for a hood & a bumper.

    Are you going to be able to get it insured? Is the insurance rate the same as if the car had a clean title?

    I found four 2005's with less mileage for under $8000 through truecar.com.

    Whatever warranty was left is voided. If you have the aptitude, time, money, and desire to handle a project car then maybe a salvage is for you. However $2100 won't last long when something major needs to be replaced. I believe this car is overpriced but may be worth $3950 but not to me.
     
  6. Patrick Wong

    Patrick Wong DIY Enthusiast

    Joined:
    Mar 8, 2008
    18,050
    6,022
    0
    Location:
    Green Valley, AZ
    Vehicle:
    2015 Prius
    Model:
    Two
    In general I would say that a salvage vehicle is a poor purchase choice, unless you

    1) are competent to evaluate the repair quality
    2) can determine whether shortcuts were taken (for example, missing airbags, installation of used parts vs. new, etc.) and if so, can decide whether those shortcuts are acceptable given your concept of minimum required vehicle safety
    3) can see whether any repairs remain to be performed, and if so, you do not need to rely upon Toyota dealer service to perform said repairs
    4) recognize that the resale value of a salvage vehicle is nominal, therefore don't change your mind after buying it.

    If any warning lights remain on when the car is READY; if there are any obvious electrical glitches; or any sign of flooding damage, do not buy the car.
     
    #6 Patrick Wong, Dec 28, 2014
    Last edited: Dec 28, 2014
    GrGramps likes this.
  7. Yakoma

    Yakoma Active Member

    Joined:
    Oct 17, 2014
    470
    118
    0
    Location:
    ATL-ish
    Vehicle:
    2008 Prius
    Model:
    N/A
    I speculate that when an insurance company is looking at a 2005 Prius with a wrecked bumper, hood and possibly headlights, they look at the repair cost but also consider the possible longevity of the car. Given the general skepticism about the life of the hybrid battery (not here, just in the general population) and considering that the cost of the repairs will be near full retail/dealer prices, I imagine it's a safe and simple call for the insurance company to declare "total" in this situation.

    (assume retail pricing)
    $3000 battery
    $500 headlights
    $2000 hood and bumper repair
    ------
    $5,500 TOTAL

    KBB - $5,000 (trade-in value, GOOD condition)

    The upside to the informed and mechanically-inclined buyer - as noted by Patrick above - is that they may be able to find good value in a totaled Prius.
     
    #7 Yakoma, Dec 28, 2014
    Last edited: Dec 29, 2014
  8. Kite23

    Kite23 New Member

    Joined:
    Dec 26, 2014
    4
    0
    0
    Vehicle:
    2005 Prius
    This car would become my workhorse. I am going to go look at it tomorrow. Most of the Pri in my area are selling around $7000
     
  9. ericbecky

    ericbecky Hybrid Battery Hero

    Joined:
    Mar 12, 2004
    4,201
    2,942
    1
    Location:
    Madison, Wisconsin
    Vehicle:
    2005 Prius
    Model:
    Two
    Be wary of salvage cars you purchase on your own. Looks can be deceiving.

    I just had a customer who bought a salvage Camry Hybrid. It looked like a good deal with minimal damage.....
    Except now it turns out it may have a bad main harness. $2,500 part plus days of labor to replace the 100+ wire harness. I thinl the dealer quoted about $5,300 to replace it. The guy is losing his shirt on this one.

    Where are you located? There is a reputable guy who sells previously-salvaged Prius for decent prices.

    Edit: I just saw a 2007 Prius in my area, 188,000 miles, non-salvage, for $4,800
     
  10. JimN

    JimN Let the games begin!

    Joined:
    Nov 26, 2006
    7,028
    1,101
    0
    Location:
    South Jersey
    Vehicle:
    2010 Prius
    Model:
    V
    Insurance is a dollars and cents business where potential longevity doesn't matter. If a vehicle can be repaired for $1 less than it would cost to total it then it'll get repaired.

    The traction battery wouldn't be affected by damage at the front end. If the adjuster included headlights and surrounding damage that got the car totaled then either this damage really didn't exist (not likely), wasn't repaired, or not repaired properly.
     
  11. Scallywag

    Scallywag Member

    Joined:
    Feb 23, 2013
    107
    21
    0
    Location:
    Columbus, OH
    Vehicle:
    2005 Prius
    Model:
    N/A
    With gas prices as low as they are currently, Prii are cheap. I'd recommend avoiding the salvage title and looking elsewhere.
     
  12. exstudent

    exstudent Senior Member

    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2009
    2,207
    841
    0
    Location:
    Torrance, CA
    Vehicle:
    2007 Prius
    Instead of you looking at it. Pay money and have a trained professional do a through inspection: look, drive, and tech stream software diagnosis it. Maybe this would be a $300-$400 cost? I'm assuming this inspection cost would be a fraction of your purchase price, maybe 10%, but money well spent IMO.
     
  13. exstudent

    exstudent Senior Member

    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2009
    2,207
    841
    0
    Location:
    Torrance, CA
    Vehicle:
    2007 Prius
    How much did the person pay for the junker? Guessing he's selling it as a parts car now?

    Would the techstream software pick-up on a bad harness b/c connections would be absent or intermittent when the long diagnosis program is run?
     
Loading...