Pre-owned luxury cars are quite popular among buyers who want to get more value for the money they spend. Besides avoiding depreciation that takes place in the original value of new cars, the large selection of used cars is another reason making pre owned cars a worthy purchase. However, finding and buying a pre-owned car is not as easy as it might seem. It is understandable to have some apprehensions and doubts regarding the condition of a used car; that is why it is crucial to put in some effort and time to carry out a careful research about the car before making an offer. Mentioned below are some very important things to check in pre-owned luxury cars.
• Initial inspection
Personally visit to check the car you are planning to buy to look for any visible signs of damage. Almost every vehicle has some imperfections, which can be easily repaired. However, you should avoid buying a luxury car requiring repairs which can be extremely time consuming and expensive. You should take a close look at the vehicle and look beyond the surface. If you notice any major dents or poor paint job, then it might hint at a cheap repair or accident. Another thing to look for is the presence of rust on the body, frame and underbody. Applying a fresh coat of paint to mask rust is a common trick used by sellers, which an experienced mechanic can help you find out. After inspecting the exterior, check the interior. The odometer and speedometer should work well and report correct measurements. The tires should be analyzed diligently to check the level of wear and tear, as unevenly worn out tires mean that the suspension or wheels are out of alignment.
• Condition of the engine
The next highly crucial thing to look at in pre-owned luxury cars is the condition of the engine. Look under the hood and if you see a dirty engine then it might signal at lack of maintenance. Similarly, presence of stripped or rounded nuts and bolts could indicate poor repair work. If the spark plugs appear newer than the other engine parts, then it is a good sign because it means that the previous owner has ensured regular tune up and maintenance of the car. Now, turn the key and notice the time it takes to start the car or any unusual noises coming out of the engine. Also look for smoke coming out of the exhaust, which might point towards internal problems requiring complete engine overhaul.
• Test drive
The final and equally important thing is to take the car for a drive, as this way you can come to know a lot about the vehicle, such as transmission, brakes and alignment. Once you are behind the steering, keenly observe the controls and performance of the car and pay special attention to any clunks and groans, as such noises can indicate several underlying issues which, although repairable, can consume a lot of your money and time.
Does the wiper, lights, air conditioner and sound system work properly? Especially notice any drop in the performance of the engine when the air conditioner is turned on. Now check the transmission, as there should not be any louder or clunking noises when switching gears in a car that has automatic transmission. Similarly, the gears should smoothly shift in manual transmission and any grinding sound could point towards bad synchronization. The next thing to look at is the alignment and it can be tested by taking your hands off the steering wheel while driving and noticing if the car gets pulled in any direction. Properly functioning brakes are crucial to enjoy a safe ride, so be aware if the car gets pulled into a side or shudders when you hit the brakes. This might be because of the lack of hydraulic fluid or the brakes could be loose. When you apply the brakes, the pedal should feel firm and if it does not, then the master cylinder might need to be replaced.
Besides the things listed above, it is suggested to ask for the repair history of the car, whether you are buying it directly from the owner or through a dealership. Going through the report can shed light on a lot of things about the damages and repairs a car has received and thus save you from making a regretful decision.