Blogs Car Info Our Show Deals Mechanics Files Vehicle Donation

Repair Body on 2001 Avalon Before Trade-In?

I am planning to trade in my 2001 Avalon which has about 102,000 miles, one owner, non smoking car. The inside is clean (carpets look fine), no rust and the engine runs great. The only problem is that I have some dings to the body and some scratches. I’d estimate about 3-4 dings. I am also missing on front left bumper a cosmetic “grill.” The Kelley Blue Book for “good” condition is $4750 and for “fair” condition is $4,300. Do you think that I can expect to get this much? I took it into a used car shop and he wanted to give me $2,200 (I walked). I have no idea how much body work costs but wondering if I should have the body fixed before trading in???

As a trade, I would not repair it. The dealer will reduce the trade in value be the amount it will cost him to do the repair. It will likely cost him less than it would cost you. This will give him a little more room for negotiations. That might end up being a better deal for you overall.

If you were selling it to a individual, then I would suggest having the work done.

If you’re trading I wouldn’t spend any money. If you’re selling privately I’d at least get an estimate.

Kelley Blue Book, and all other such price guides, are ESTIMATES, based on average selling prices for thousands, if not millions, of vehicles. Your vehicle may be worth more, or less, than KBB, depending upon its condition.

I’d fix the missing ‘grill’ if you can get the part for a reasonable $. Without seeing it, it’s hard to tell about the scratches and dings. Does it look OK from 10 feet? If so, I’d skip the body work, just get a good cleaning done inside and out.

You’d have a better chance of getting $4000 from privately selling it.
Let’s be honest though, it’s almost 9 years old now, and will probably go to auction anyways.

If you can get the grile for about $30 get it. Forget the dings and scratches.