Q: Shop says tie rods, wheel bearings and motor mounts are going bad on a used Bonneville-salesman says not true because no noise

asked by on May 10, 2017

I was looking into purchasing the above car- being sold by a lot for $3500. I took it for a pre-purchase inspection by a reputable shop in town who told me it needs front rotors, front motor mount, left outer tie rod, LF bearing and has leaking valve cover gasket. I went back to the lot to inform the guy of this & ask for a discount on the car to cover the work estimated at about $1000. He refused & says these are not big issues & not true because there is no noise or rattling. He said shops will try to come up w/issues that might possibly happen in the future & will claim something is wrong on every car they see. He said it's a good car well worth what he's charging. The mechanic came up with a few other things like interior lights are out, 1 rear window not working, EVAP code PO440, trans pan gasket leak, but I am most concerned about the top things as they are safety & reliability issues. So wondering if this purchase is worthwhile?

My car has 116000 miles.
My car has an automatic transmission.

Based on data from the Kelly Blue Book database of used car transactions, if the car were in good condition (which it isn’t , obviously), it’s worth about $2,000. Given the number, and extent, of required repairs, $2,000 would be a generous and reasonable offer. At present, there is a substantial supply of used vehicles available, relative to demand, and thus not likely anyone will pay $3,500 for the car. At $2,000, if you can get EVERYTHING repaired for $1,000, including the EVAP code which MUST be resolved, it’s probably OK. I would ask the mechanic what the cause of the EVAP code is though because that alone could be a problem and again, a cardinal rule is do not drive a car around with the check engine light on. That is the proverbial slippery slope and if the car doesn’t work as intended, it will have to be repaired. So, the bottom line is, I wouldn’t go a penny over $2,000 and even that might be too much. If you have further questions or concerns, do not hesitate to re-contact YourMechanic as we are always here to help you.

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