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Best option for selling a non-drivable car

So, I have a 2002 Audi A4 3.0 with CVT. The transmission is failing (does not engage when going from reverse to drive and also fails to engage after stopping at a light) and, as we all know, CVTs are pretty much DOA once they begin to malfunction. Both the dealer and an independent transmission shop that I trust say it’ll cost about $7,000 to replace it. The car is worth about $5,000 in working condition, according to Kelly Blue Book, so I can’t see putting another 7 grand into it. It breaks my heart to do it, but I feel my only option is to get rid of it.

I’m looking for suggestions on the easiest way to go about that. Sell it to a junk yard? Take what I can get for it in trade, assuming a dealer would want it? It is reasonable to expect to get a couple of grand for it? It’s in good shape otherwise. Leather interior is in good shape, engine and brakes are good, body has very minor dings and scratches.


I really doubt that a dealer would want the car. When you trade a car, there are actually two transactions: 1) you are buying a car from the dealer; 2) the dealer is buying a car from you. The dealer doesn’t want your car. He will jack up the price of the car you want to buy to give you a trade-in and it might be more than if you bought his car straight out.
You might advertise it on Craig’s list. Some Audi enthusiast may want it for the parts. As you already know, it isn’t worth spending $7000 to obtain a car worth $5000.

@Triedaq is right. The only other suggestion I have is that you MIGHT find a good used transmission at, but consider that many of those in ten year old wrecked/salvage cars will have as many miles on them as yours has. If you buy a used one, be sure they give you a good warranty on it. Some will give up to six months, but most are 30 days or 1000 miles, whichever comes first. Get one with a six month warranty, and then start looking for a new car.

Another option is to donate it. If you find someone that uses the car themselves, you can deduct fair market value. If not, they will give you a receipt for what they sold it for, and that is your deduction.

It is worth a shot on craigslist, I would consider it for a fun project car, make me an offer I can’t refuse!

A vocational/tech school is another choice for getting rid of it. Students will get a chance to learn how to work on the car and you’ll be rid of it.

The vo-tech school might qualify for the fair market value deduction. You should check federal tax laws to make sure.

List it on craigslist as a “Parts Car For Sale”…Ask $1500. You can always come down…Take some decent pictures and post them in the ad.

Thanks for the feedback, folks. I’m going to explore the Craigslist option and maybe call a few auto salvage yards.