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What Do You Think About a Car Dealership Selling Us a New Car That Has Been Wrecked?

Hi Tony,

I love your website. I wanted to see if you could offer some input regarding my new car purchase. My husband and I purchased a new Honda Accord. It has started making a squeaking sound in the rear end. We think it's the shocks.

Well, as it turns out this car has been wrecked prior to us buying it. We have noticed minor things that you wouldn't notice unless you suspected something was wrong and starting really looking at the car.

What do you think about a car dealership selling us a NEW CAR that has been wrecked? We are furious. We did get a CarFax report prior to buying this car and it came up clean. This car has not been previously owned. To us we feel that we bought a new car and should have been given a new car.

All we can figure is that maybe the car was wrecked during a previous test drive or something and that the dealership fixed the car themselves.

Any input would be greatly appreciated.

Thank you,



Hi Amber,

Thank you for your kind words about my website.

If in fact the car was damaged and repaired, and the dealer didn't disclose this to you before you purchased it, then this is serious.

It could be that the car was damaged as you say, in a test drive, or perhaps it was damaged while being shipped. However, Be sure you know what you are talking about before you accuse the dealer. Have it looked at by a reputable body shop for a second opinion.

Once you are absolutely certain, then go straight to the owner of the dealership. If this person is not available then go to the General Manager. Tell them you want the car replaced. After all, you paid for a new car.

You should also contact Honda. Your owner's manual should have some contact information in it. If you don't get any satisfaction then contact your state's attorney general's office for help. You may even have to get an attorney. Hopefully it won't come to that.

Good luck,

Tony Iorio

Response to My Answer:

Hi Tony,

I just wanted to let you know what happened with my "new wrecked" car.

First, my husband took the car to a body shop to have them look at it and give an opinion. They found numerous parts that were replaced. Just to name a few . . . front bumper, front grill, hood, rear bumper & trunk lid. The parts that had been replaced had RHDOT printed on the stickers instead of the VIN number that the other parts had.

Then, my husband took the car to a different Honda dealership than the one we purchased from so he could compare these stickers. He found that on a truly new car, the VIN number was on all body parts that could be replaced.

Next, he went to the dealership where we bought the car and they did confirm what we suspected. Apparently, the old general manager of the dealership wrecked a car on the front & the back. They stated that they thought the car was not going to be put back on the lot to be sold.

We did end up getting a new car. We had to wait a couple of days for them to find one like the one that we had. They did go out of their way to correct this situation. They lowered our amount financed and the interest rate on the loan.

We are happy with the outcome, but are still shocked that this could have ever happened. You just never expect to buy a wrecked new car.

I want to thank you for your e-mail last week. You gave us great advice on how to handle the situation.

Thanks Again,


My Follow-Up to Amber's Comments:

Hi Amber,

Thank God you got this problem squared away. It sounds like you and your husband did all the right things. Good work.

Of course, this crap they told you about them not thinking the car would be put back on the lot is a big lie! They knew exactly what they were doing. They thought they could get away with it, but you proved them wrong.

It sounds like they went out of their way to accommodate you. That's because they knew they could get in BIG trouble for not disclosing the damage to you. The state would probably come down hard on them if you had to file a complaint.

Not to mention any potential law suits from you!

All they have to do when they sell the car is be honest about it - up front - and show a potential customer what was done, and of course offer a big discount. Someone will buy the car under those circumstances.

When I was selling cars, the best month I ever had as a salesman was right after a big hail storm damaged every car on our lot. I'm talking dozens and dozens of hail dents on each car.

We were paid by our insurance company to repair the damage to each car, but instead we put together a big "Hail Dent Sale" and passed along most of the insurance money to the buyers.

People went crazy to buy these cars. Brand new cars full of dents! Go figure. I actually had customers fighting with each other over who gets a certain car. Others camped out in the cars until we could get to them. It was a frenzy like I have never seen before or since.

The point is that someone will buy that repaired car if they present it in the right way.

Good luck with your new car . . .

All my very best to you and your husband . . .

Tony Iorio

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