About to purchase a car


#1

Hi Folks, I am considering buying a manual transmission 2010 Mazda Mazda 3i Touring. The Carfax does not have anything besides the last maintainance done by the dealer. Is that reasonable, should I be worried? I did test-drive the car and it feels fine. Thanks. UMIADE


#2

Carfax is often missing lots of information, although they try to convince you otherwise.

As with any used car purchase, your best bet is taking the car to a good mechanic for a pre-purchase inspection. A small amount of money spent now might save you from an expensive mistake.


#3

Yes, pay a recommended local mechanic to inspect it.


#4

In 1993 we purchased a 1979 Lincoln Versailles from our elderly neighbors. It was obviously in excellent condition with low miles. I still had it checked by our excellent independent mechanic shop. They gave it a total thumbs up. I thought at that time a Lincoln Versailles was just a Mercury Monarch with a Lincoln grill. It had a 351 cu in V8, Heavy duty suspension, 15 inch wheels, four wheel disc brakes, and 9 inch rear end. In 2 years we put nothing more than oil/ filter changes into it. We paid $4,000 and traded it in for a new 1985 Crown Victoria. The Ford dealer gave us $3,800. I guess we won on this one. $100 for a reputable independent inspection is well worth it!


#5

+1 for @lion9car and @jesmed1 .

You have to make sure that the mechanic is a good one though. My uncle just bought a 2004 Taurus (supposedly) that had been checked out by a mechanic at the dealership where he works. The Taurus was actually a 2002 model that had the driver’s door replaced which had a VIN # still attached. That’s what they assumed was the correct VIN. It was a private sale and he got a partial refund from the seller. When the title arrived…the mistake was discovered. I showed him the VIN tag below the windshield and they matched the title.


#6

Good ideas above, especially about taking the car to a mechanic for a professional look-see pre-purchase evaluation. Prior to that you might also look up what it says in the “Consumer Reports Guide to Used Cars”. Big-chain bookstores and most public libraries usually have it. You can see what other owners of this make/model/year have had problems with. Then you can ask the mechanic to pay special attention to those areas during the inspection. Best of luck.