Advice on buying a car with replaced strut assembly, steering knuckle and control arm

toyota
corolla

#1

We are thinking to buy a Toyota Corolla 2004, which had taken a hit recently while parking. They had replaced the control arm, steering knuckle, strut assembly, the ball joint and the stabilizer link. How bad could be the long-term damage and would it be safe to drive such a car?

Thanks in advance


#2

Pay to have it inspected by a collision repair shop. That is the only way to get accurate answers. If they did it their selves I wouldn’t even be interested.


#3

+1 to Volvo’s post.
The first thing that comes to my mind is “why are they selling it?”.
I’d keep looking, but that’s just me.


#4

Sorry I haven’t described the situation accurately. The repair was done a while ago (March 2015) and they’ve been driving the car since. They are selling it because they leave the country. We are worried that there was a structural damage and it would not be safe to drive the car (if for example there is an accident etc.)


#5

A control arm is one thing. A damaged strut and knuckle is something altogether different and not in a good way.
Damage to the latter two things means a hard hit.
There could be damage to the subframe and/or strut tower. You might look the strut tower (the part under the hood to which the top of the strut is attached) over very closely for any tiny signs of cracked paint. Cracked paint can be an indicator of severe head to the body shop time.

The fact they’ve been driving it means nothing and I agree; have a quality body shop look the chassis over.

If you want to do a rough DIY test which may reveal problems take a tape measure and measure from a common point on the front wheel to the rear wheel on the same side. Repeat the process on the other side.
If the tape shows an inch difference or whatever it might be best to run.


#6

If this is a Craigslist ad selling because leaving the country is one of the major red flags of shady transactions.