Brand New Car that is 2.5 years old!

American vehicle. Built in the Fall of 2006, been sitting since. 7 miles on it. 50% off sticker. I’m going to take a look at it because I feel I HAVE to. I’ll be armed with a very long checklist to test out of the features (of which there are many). Other than the obvious stuff like dry-rotted tires and maybe a tired battery, what could possibly be wrong with this vehicle???

My thought is the brakes would be the most prone to any problems, dying to know make model and color. What warranty are they offering?

It’s the standard (full) American warranty. The vehicle has never been titled. So I guess that helps, but I don’t want to buy a vehicle that’s going to be in the service center all the time for warranty work, either. This would be the fourth new vehicle I’ve bought in my life and none have any done any time in a dealership for warranty work. One went in for an airbag check, but that was it. As far as the make, model and color, I’ll post that after I visit to do my inspection. I’ll just say that it’s not a vehicle many people want, so that’s part of the reason it’s still around. Plus, this dealer had several of these things on his lot at one point and this probably the ugliest of the bunch.

Brakes will surely be on my checklist.

Here’s what I’m thinking could be a problem:

1.) Electronics - the vehicle has probably been jumped several times over the past 2+ years. Gotta wonder if this could cause damage somewhere.

2.) Metal corrosion - What if the lubricants have been sitting in their respective pans for a LONG time? Could simply turning the engine over so infrequently have already caused some internal damage?

One other thing I thought of: is it possible to tamper with an electronic odometer? Would a dealer know how to reset an odometer? Could the computer be replaced to reset it? It’s really hard to believe that a 2.5 year old vehicle would only have 7 miles on it! That’s maybe ONE test drive!

JMHO, but I don’t see many problems lurking on this vehicle other than a faulty battery; unless that has been replaced. Two and a half years is not that long; 4 or 5 would be a different story.

You might contact the regional office with the VIN and see what they say about this vehicle. If there is any history of it being sold, laundered title, etc. or anything shaky about it then the records should reflect it.

With only 7 miles and a 50% discount I would say you have to seriously consider the vehicle if everything checks out fine.
It is unusual (VERY) for a dealer to have what is called a “Lot Lizard” sitting around this long because car sales are all about cash flow in the here and now.

It could be the wrong model, built by the wrong builder. The fact that you did not name the car is the first bad sign.

2.5 years is not all that long. Under otherwise normal conditions I would jump at the 50% off. However consider the real possibility that is may have been flood damaged or suffered some other damage. Unless you know why it has been on the lot for 2.5 years I would worry about what they (or you) are not telling us.

Tyres will not be dry rotted in 2.5 years any more than if the car was in service.

Like Joseph, my concern would be why it’s been on the lot so long. Your not having told us the make or model also makes me suspicious.

In addition to the vehicle, be concerned about getting title. There may be a hidden documentation problem.

Somebody’s wise old grandmother once said, “There’s a lid for every pot”, in reference to finding a mate. Along those lines, questions have to be raised about the reasons for this car not finding a buyer for such an extended period of time.

My feeling is that this car must have something REALLY unappealing about it for Colt Hero to be the first person in 2.5 years to find this vehicle desirable, and he/she may not yet have uncovered what that unappealing factor is.

If this vehicle has a timing belt, it is now 2.5 years closer to needing that part replaced, along with the serpentine belt(s), the tires, and any other rubber parts. 50% off the sticker price sounds appealing, but in reality, that price may not be much cheaper than a comparable vehicle that has been driven for 2.5 years.

It may be a genuine bargain, but I am of a suspicious nature, and I would be wary of a vehicle that nobody else wanted to buy for 2.5 years.

I bought a new, one year old dodge pickup and had a backyard mechanic friend of mine check it over. I didn’t realize till i’d had it awhile that it had probably been in an accident - (the tailgate didn’t close properly, because the whole vehicle was out of whack - eg. gaps bigger on one side of the hood than the other). Realized much later my “friend” probably set it up and got a kickback from the dealer for bringing in such a sucker. If you want it, get it inspected at a reputable mechanic that is not recommended by the dealer. It is worth the money when you are spending that much. By the way, the truck actually worked fine for me (except for the tailgate) and I traded it in to a dealer after 3-4 years when my needs changed for book value.
but still. I was lucky – and if I’d kept it along time, who knows what might’ve gone wrong. If the dealer won’t let you take it to an independent mechanic - walk away and don’t come back!

Never heard of a "standard (full)American warranty) as they are all different in some way but I am sure you will sort this out.

You fear the car may have damaged electronics or internal engine damage from sitting,what tests could you perform that would aleviate your fears in these areas? nothing for the electronics and only a teardown for the engine internals. And you have fears about the mileage being accurate, listen to yourself and walk away from this one,you will always be wondering

A new car will not deteriorate excessively in 2.5 years, and the tires certainly don’t “rot” during this time. I would be worried that this car may have been in a flood, such as Katrina!

I would very carefully have it checked out for water damage before even considering going any further.

If it’s an ODD model, it could sit on the dealer’s lot for a long time. Chrysler once built a lot of cars without power steering when their supplier went on strike, and had great difficulty moving these otherwise well equipped units off the dealers’ lots.

Some interesting comments. IF the car seems OK and you buy it I think you’ll be OK. Get the oil changed at about 1,000 miles. I’d change out the brake fluid in about a year or so also. To check out car prior to purchase a CARFAX report will show you what dealer it was originally sold to and build date. If the car was delivered to a dealer different than the one you are purchasing from that may be another red flag. Have the car checked by an independant mechanic if you have any doubts, it’s worth the money. Tires, coolant, transmission fluid, should all be fine. If the battery was not replaced it may be fine if it holds a charge. If it runs OK then the gas hasn’t gelled up the fuel system. Burn up the gas in the tank quickly and get some fresh gas in there. Good Luck.

What car could this possibily be? It would have to be the least popular American car,has to be something from Chrysler,whats your guess? OP we deserve to know,what is it? I have never heard of a deal like this before. How did the Dealer come upon this car? did they order it? Why such a secret?

The Chrysler Crossfire Which was a 35 to 40 grand car made with Mercedes Benz parts are going used with less then 20k miles for about $13.000,00. This sounds like a very intriguing commuter car as compared to a econo box for the same cost.

I’m telling you - you’d laugh if I told you the vehicle make and model, then you’d say, “well, no surprise it’s half price…!”. As far as the vehicle being transferred from another dealer, I’m pretty sure it’s an original dealer purchase - but I’ll be checking the sticker to make sure. The reason I’m pretty sure is I actually came across this vehicle last summer when I started my preliminary search for my next new vehicle purchase. I always buy new leftovers, so last year I was searching for '07 leftovers. Searching for a vehicle to purchase is a major undertaking for me (but I like doing it and think it’s kind of fun). I locate all inventories for hundreds of miles and build a binder full of spreadsheets for each vehicle I locate. Then I send out offers and receive counter-offers. The counters I was getting last summer didn’t WOW me, and since I didn’t NEED to buy a new car at that time (and I still don’t), I decided to pass and wait until this year when I would then go through the whole process again for '08 leftovers. Come the new year, however, I decided to shop other vehicles - and actually ended up with a couple of acceptable counter-offers for those, but a test drive put the brakes on that and I was back to square one again. SOoooo, I pulled out my '07 binder and started looking into the possibility that some of these leftovers might still be leftover. Turned out THREE were! So, amidst quite a bit of laughter, I sent out outrageous half-price offers on all three, with this vehicle coming back at about $1k more than my asking price (it’s actually 49% off sticker, not 50%). Of the other two, one was absolutely unappealing and may never sell, while the other was equally appealing, but the dealer wanted $5k more! It may turn out that once I arrive to check this vehicle out, the dealer will tell me that he can’t sell me the vehicle at the price he quoted blah, blah, blah, in which case I’ll just laugh, get back in my car and go home. As I stated above, I don’t NEED this vehicle. It’s just time to consider buying a new vehicle by my personal metrics. The other thing is, there’s not a lot of support in the house for buying this vehicle. Still, I HAVE to investigate this - if only to expose the dealer as a fraud! Whether I buy this vehicle or not, I think the trip will be interesting. I’ve got my very detailed checklist built - which starts with a visual external inspection, proceeds to a visual cabin inspection, engine compartment inspection, stationary electronics inspections (windows, locks, radio, etc.), then road test. Finally, I’m going to have them put it up on a lift so I can inspect the underbody. I figure if they REALLY want to get rid of this vehicle, they’ll be willing to do almost anything I ask them to do…

We have been had by a game player. Why such a secret as to what kind of car? Because it’s all a game.

Yep, I have some ideas of things to check, but I am not saying a word until he tells us the make and model.

Let’s save our advice for someone who isn’t going to play childish games.

Tell us what kind of vehicle this is and the approx. price. You’re certainly not going to get a snide comment out of me.

Seven miles on a 2.5 year old car with 50% off means one has to give some real serious consideration to this vehicle no matter what make it is.

While it’s amazing to me a dealer has actually allowed a few cars to linger around this long instead of dumping them off there may be one other angle at work here.
You appear to have made on-line offers and the dealer is roughly in the ballpark with you right now on the price.
When you show up at the lot THAT is when the thumbscrews may be applied and the price may take a significant leap upwards.

In OK they have laws against “bait and switch” tactics but it happens every day no matter what the law states.

Did they still make the Pontiac Aztec in 2007? If so, this may be it. They were ugly! At 1/2 price for a new one, maybe I could live with that?

Is half price really a bargain? Most domestics are very overpriced and plummet in value used in 2-3 years old anyway.