AUTOHAUS PRE PURCHASE INSPECTIONS
Make sure you know what you’re getting into!
• Is it really such a problem?
• Knowledge is power
• What if the report is unfavourable?
• Case study
A pre purchase inspection performed by Autohaus Hamilton can be the difference between a dream car and a nightmare. Hidden damage or lack of correct maintenance can have a catastrophic effect on a Porsche. Having a qualified technician with the experience and specific product knowledge inspect the vehicle can literally save you thousands of dollars.
Is it really such a problem?
Although the vast majority of Porsche owners give their cars the care and maintenance they require, there are also those who will drive their car for a number of years spending no money on required repairs or general maintenance. When confronted with having to spend thousands or even tens of thousands to make things right, rather than paying for their shortfalls they choose to sell the car to some unsuspecting buyer.
This is where the pre purchase inspection comes in. It means you can buy with peace of mind. The result ? Porsche ownership will be the enjoyable experience it should be.
Knowledge is power
Whether you are buying a car privately, from a German car dealer or Porsche main dealer, it is vitally important to have the car inspected by someone that is entirely familiar with that particular model Porsche.
Remember, with private sellers the reliability of the information they give you about a car is only as good as the judgment they displayed when they purchased it. It is not uncommon for us to inspect vehicles for existing owners and find a multitude of sins that they had no idea of.
You might think that when buying from a licensed car dealer or a so called ‘German Car Specialist’, the buying process would be less fraught with danger. Generally this is the case as most dealers prefer to buy and sell good cars that won't bounce back for warranty claims. The problem is that dealers often buy cars from all over the country sight unseen. So they rely on the information given to them buy a seller who is seldom a marque or model expert. Many do the right thing and repair the car; but others try to move it on as is.
At Porsche main dealers, it very much depends on the model of car as to whether they are going to be able to give you an expert evaluation of the car's condition. From personal experience, not all main dealers have staff that are expert on models older than 10 to 15 years; they provide an excellent level of expertise on newer model cars but often not the same level of expertise on older model Porsches.
At Autohaus Hamilton we have technicians who are experts in every model 911, all the way from mid 1960 cars to the latest 997, Boxsters and Cayennes.
What if the report is unfavourable?
Inevitably, some of the inspection reports we complete are unfavourable. If that happens, don't feel dejected. Regard it as part of the buying process that must be completed prior to making a major investment – a kind of automotive 'due diligence'. All cars have problems, even some relatively new ones. Some problems will be major and some will be relatively minor. But the most important thing we recommend to people is that they buy the best car their budget will allow.
With a pre purchase inspection, repairs are known and can be budgeted for. Costs can be spread out over a period of time during which the vehicle can still be driven and enjoyed while being returned to its former glory.
But those who buy their car privately on the weekend and then arrive at the Porsche specialist for a ‘Post Purchase Inspection’ on Monday more often than not leave disappointed after being told their car has many hidden problems they hadn't bargained for.
We don't only perform pre purchase inspections for private buyers. If you are buying a Porsche from Autohaus Hamilton Sales we perform them for you. Every car that passes through our showroom whether we own it or are consigning it on behalf of the owner has had a thorough inspection carried out.
Case study: A 911 bought without a pre purchase inspection:
We recently inspected a car bought by a person who has owned many Porsche 911s, both old and new. So if anyone was going to get it right you would think they would stand the best chance. Unfortunately, that's not how it turned out. This car looked great on the outside, had all the correct documentation and all the factory delivery stickers were in the right place.
Underneath, however, was a different story, it had received a major hit in the rear side of the car to the extent that the side chassis rails were no longer straight and the rear torsion bar and rear suspension mounts had been torn from the underside of the car – the photo tells the story.
The moral of the story is that there is no substitute for being able to lift a car up on a hoist in a professional workshop and have someone that is expert in that particular model inspect it thoroughly.
This picture shows the side rear suspension arm attached to torsion bar 20mm below level of chassis
floor above i.e torn downward. It should be flush with the floor of the car.