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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello, I consider it a great privilege to be amongst Mini Cooper, users and enthusiasts! I look forward to learning and contributing to this Mini Cooper ,
In the meantime, I found this 2011 Mini Cooper s for sale,. It has been my dream to own it, and I think I just found a perfect opportunity to make that happen.

They asking price is $8,500 and it has 63000 miles with a Salvage Title.
If you guys have any suggestions on what to check.
Looking forward to joining this family, thanks
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What Birdcurtains said. Walk away.

General used car advice is to avoid mod'd cars, cars with accident damage (even if repaired), cars with stories, and cars with salvage title even if they have been "repaired".

Rule of used car buying is there is always another car. There is a car out there with your name on it. But it ain't (or shouldn't be) the car you are considering now.

Walk away from this car.
 

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If the repairs have been done properly (do not take word alone for that) and the price is right (lower then normal) then it's worth a look. At least have a drive to see what you think.
Hard enough to evaluate a used car with no salvage title. Salvage classification can arise from accident damage, theft, fire, or flood. There's just no way to be sure the car has been properly repaired. The severity of the damage and the age/miles of the car meant the insurance company was better off declaring the car a loss and sticking it with a salvage title than paying to fix the car.

My standard if someone asks about buying a car with a salvage title he shouldn't.
 

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On this car the valve stem seals will need to be replaced due to burning oil. They will have to remove the camshafts so while you're getting it done you should also get the timing chain and guides replaced as well. If you can do it yourself it will cost around $400 usd. If you're paying a mechanic then expect $2k. The high pressure fuel pump will fail and to replace is around $1k. The intake valves will build up carbon because it's a direct fuel injection car. You will need to get it walnut blasted maybe every 50k miles or so.

The salvage title wouldn't make me run away provided everything was sorted out properly. If there is body work done with body filler then expect the paint in the damaged area to last maybe 4 years or less,depending if you get freezing winter temperatures. If body work is done correctly it can last, but it's common for paint to bubble or peel in the damage area with age.
 

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Hey, welcome to the forum, As people mentioned here, not worth it to own a salvage title vehicle, but it's not always the case, My friend bought a salvage title toyota tacoma with a minor bumper damage, he is using it for a past 5 years, no problem at all, so it depends how badly damage the vehicle is, to know more about it, you have to ask the owner for the details, if the feel the owner is hesitating to answer or try to hide it, then you have to be suspicious, the other way to know more about the damage is getting the car report, there's lot of car report provider out there, (Carfax, Autocheck, I usually use "Instant VIN Report" it's cheaper) I always get the car report before purchasing the car, Hope it help you! Thanks.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Thanks everyone for your concerned, I try to find out more about the reason of the salvage title, seems like I will need to get the car report as @Wilson789 , suggested, and yes thanks for your advice and website suggestion, I will need the cheapest report possible, haha, I will let you guys know the update, thanks for your help guys
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 · (Edited)
So here is the report thanks to @Wilson789 for letting me know this Vehicle Report, I save some bucks on it. I got a discount as a new customer so I decide to get both report and window sticker., so in the report it mentioned mild damage but WOW, there's so many accidents on this car in 2 different state, but no major damage, what do you guys think? I also got the window sticker which is really cool, there's plenty of installed package on it.
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So here is the report thanks to @Wilson789 for letting me know this Vehicle Report, I save some bucks on it. I got a discount as a new customer so I decide to get both report and window sticker., so in the report it mentioned mild damage but WOW, there's so many accidents on this car in 2 different state, but no major damage, what do you guys think? I also got the window sticker which is really cool, there's plenty of installed package on it.
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It is not the insurance company's normal behavior to declare a car worthy of a salvage title with just mild damage. Someone selling a car with a salvage title will invariably claim "mild" or "minor" damage.

But the rule is everything a car sales man tells you is to 1) Get you to buy the car as soon as possible; and 2) Pay as much for it as possible.

Also, the reports are not always accurate. I had another brand of car involved in an accident. It was hit while parked. Long story short I had the car repaired and repaired to a very high standard. The car was but 2 months old when it was hit.

After about 18 months I decided to trade the car in. I had pics of the accident damage, a copy of the repair invoice (8 pages). I handed these to the used car appraiser at the dealer. He looked at the pics for a brief bit, and just glanced at the repair invoice then handed them back to me. I said they are copies for your records. He didn't want them. He checked out the car and it was fine.

Some time after I checked the traded in car out and lo and behold the CARFAX report did not list the accident. The car was repaired at a large (and good/highly regarded) repair facility. Further I filed and received a diminished valve claim against the at fault driver's insurance.

So the car had every reason to be listed in CARFAX's data base with an accident on its history.

With a salvage title the car will have severe stigma attached to it. No real trade in or private sale value.

Last but not least if you insist on proceeding be sure you can insure the car. Some insurance companies balk at insuring a car with a salvage title. The car was declared a total loss so if involved in a subsequent accident it would be hard to distinguish between previous (and neglected damage) and current damage.
 

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As @Rockster said, take precaution, before proceeding further, I see you also got the window sticker, lot of packages installed on this car eh. But yeah, lot of accidents reported on this car, if you are not in the rush, I suggest you to wait and keep checking for new post you might get a clean title with probably cheaper price.
 

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Sometimes when the mileage is low, it’s more telling that when it’s high. Quite often you’ll see these cars in the uk and they’ll have been driven say 8k miles a year and then for a year or cover less than 1k miles. End up with low mileage. Not sure if you can find out that sort of info, it’s on the annual MOT online. I would be suspicious on a low mileage car at this age, unless you can meet the driver in person.

The accident records are alarming! Although if you check the dates it looks like 5 accidents, perhaps they’ve put double on some dates because it involved other people. Still not very good and I’d want to see some paperwork like receipts or do some more research. I would imagine it’s someone that can’t park, but you never know.

The single most important thing with these cars is the service history. This is the slightly more reliable engine, the later n18, but it isn’t free from problems and this pretty much boils down to frequent oil changes. Mini said 10-12000 intervals, but it should be 5-6000 between oil changes. Not everyone knew this, but by 2010/2011 most people started to have an idea so my advice would be to avoid this if there’s no paper work regarding service history or the accidents it’s been involved with.

It’s a high price for the history, so find a private seller. If you want to get one on finance, be careful as you could end up paying for a car that you can’t drive because it’s off the road. But seriously wait or you’ll be the next sucker and won’t be able to drive it before spending another £2/3000 on the car and not have a car for a few weeks, maybe longer.
 

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Salvage title = walk away.

You can buy one in similar condition with a clean title, for the same price.
I agree for the southeast. That is low mileage for sure but should be able to find a 2011 S with clean title for that price. Key will be tracking down what type of maintenance or any mechanical validation checks (inspecting the valves, compression test, leak down test, inspecting the oil pan for bits and pieces) can be offered/documented. For the 2nd gens do plan on getting timing chain / tensioner replaced even at that low mileage because you dont know how the previous owners drove the mini (could have been spirited drivers or lazy sunday drives) or if they missed an oil change or two. Just sold my 2011 base with 100K for 6K in atlanta area.
 
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