Automotive

Advice Needed: Buyout vs Return

  • Last Updated:
  • Jul 13th, 2020 7:08 pm
[OP]
Jr. Member
Sep 10, 2006
157 posts
45 upvotes
Toronto

Advice Needed: Buyout vs Return

This is our first time leasing a car (2017 Audi A4 Quattro Technik Demo) and now we are reaching the end of the lease term.
Overall we are happy with the vehicle but there are some factors I am debating to whether return the car or buy it out.
Hope the experts here can shed some lights and share some experiences.

Some facts
- Total KMs at Lease End is 52800 and we are only at 33000 now
- Had 1 accident (not at fault). It was hit by another car in the parking lot; small damage on the side though
- we also did some cosmetics repairs to the car over the years, including
- replaced the passenger side mirror
- replaced the rear passenger side tail light
- fixed dent / scratch on the hood
- fixed dent / scratch on the body (both sides of the car)

still one thing pending to be fixed - the chrome grille; it is not very visible from appearance but you can tell when turning on the front view camera
and it will cost a leg to fix it (~$2k)

my main struggle is...
if returning
- likely need to pay the $2k to fix the chrome grille
- did not fully drive the car (20k less than the target)
- still need to buy another car
buyout price is $28k and a comparable car costs about $33k on autotrader

if buying it out
- would the accident record + all the repair history have a bad impact to its resale value in the future

thanks a lot in advance!
Last edited by No.6 on Jul 10th, 2020 2:01 pm, edited 1 time in total.
36 replies
Deal Expert
User avatar
Jul 30, 2007
31877 posts
18865 upvotes
Toronto
if there is something else you want to drive, then it's a good time to do so.

I say it's not a keeper, I suggest to just pay/fix the damage and hopefully, that's all to it.

If you opt to just keep it and still have a vision to sell not too long after the buyout, then the resale/trade in value will play a factor.
Last edited by booblehead on Jul 10th, 2020 11:17 am, edited 1 time in total.
Deal Addict
Jan 17, 2009
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Toronto, Ontario
Really depends how long you think you would keep it for afterwards and your financial situation.
Deal Fanatic
Aug 29, 2011
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What's the long-term reliability like on these vehicles? Rule of thumb used to be to get rid of your Audi once the warranty ran out.
Deal Fanatic
Dec 24, 2005
5764 posts
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you have a heck of a lot of damage for 33000 km

i would return and start again
[OP]
Jr. Member
Sep 10, 2006
157 posts
45 upvotes
Toronto
thanks!
have been thinking about getting a smaller car like a mini cooper so that my wife can drive it with more confidence.
if keeping it, i am not planning to sell it in the short term
booblehead wrote: if there is something else you want to drive, then it's a good time to do so.

I say it's not a keeper, I suggest to just pay/fix the damage and hopefully, that's all to it.

If you opt to just keep it and still have a vision to sell not too long after the buyout, then the resale/trade in value will play a factor.
[OP]
Jr. Member
Sep 10, 2006
157 posts
45 upvotes
Toronto
thanks for the advice.
true. will definitely think about that.
milolai wrote: you have a heck of a lot of damage for 33000 km

i would return and start again
Deal Addict
User avatar
Jul 20, 2016
1134 posts
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A4 on a 39mo lease? so many of these 1st model year B9 leases are gonna hit the used market this year which is gonna jam resale value even if you might have small gains from the lower mileage but there's also a collision on record so who knows

and since you've gone down the the first half of the dark path known as leasing, why not do the other half that is churning another lease and repeat ;)
Deal Addict
Jul 21, 2009
1489 posts
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What exactly is wrong with the chrome grill? Is it bent and blocking the front camera?
mrweather wrote: What's the long-term reliability like on these vehicles? Rule of thumb used to be to get rid of your Audi once the warranty ran out.
Mine has 90k on it and has had quite a bit of work done on it all covered under warranty. Compared with my last car (2012 Hyundai Elantra) that had no work done except for oil changes for 7 years. Bigger items being battery replaced at 40k, water pump and control arm replaced at 60k. Engine has been solid and the warranty service was exceptional.

IMO if buying a newer Audi for long term out of warranty ownership then don't option the driver assist and HUD packages as that adds a lot of cost to do work on.
Deal Fanatic
Jul 26, 2007
6683 posts
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If mechanically, the car is maintained and sound well, keep the car. You caused most of the body damages and can't say you won't on next lease and you are right back where you are now after 3 or so years.
[OP]
Jr. Member
Sep 10, 2006
157 posts
45 upvotes
Toronto
exactly. it is bent and the front camera is partially blocked. was told that the entire chrome grill needs to be replaced Crying Face
i agree. the more high end technologies it has, the more expensive to fix things.
worrying that one day the vitual cockpit will break and who knows how much it will cost to fix that
submarine wrote: What exactly is wrong with the chrome grill? Is it bent and blocking the front camera?



Mine has 90k on it and has had quite a bit of work done on it all covered under warranty. Compared with my last car (2012 Hyundai Elantra) that had no work done except for oil changes for 7 years. Bigger items being battery replaced at 40k, water pump and control arm replaced at 60k. Engine has been solid and the warranty service was exceptional.

IMO if buying a newer Audi for long term out of warranty ownership then don't option the driver assist and HUD packages as that adds a lot of cost to do work on.
[OP]
Jr. Member
Sep 10, 2006
157 posts
45 upvotes
Toronto
thanks!
yeah that's exactly the struggle i am facing.
the car is mechanically maintained and sound well.

just not sure if i want to lease another car... feeling its such a rip-off
if owning the car, i can be lazy and not too worry about repairing it, but for lease i feel that i have to get it fixed

have been thinking about getting a smaller car (mini cooper) so that the wife has less chance of getting it scratched. lol
peteryorkuca wrote: If mechanically, the car is maintained and sound well, keep the car. You caused most of the body damages and can't say you won't on next lease and you are right back where you are now after 3 or so years.
Sr. Member
Mar 22, 2004
692 posts
494 upvotes
London, ON
The biggest question that hasn't been answered is what is your buyout compared to what a similar model costs on the market? If the buyout is equal or more, then it makes no sense whatsoever. The accident(s) will show up on the CarFax, and dealers/private buyers will use it against you when trying to trade/sell it. Even a small incident usually shows up as a pretty big claim. I wouldn't be surprised if CarFax showed $5k or more for "small damage on the side".
Deal Fanatic
Jul 26, 2007
6683 posts
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ncnmra wrote: The biggest question that hasn't been answered is what is your buyout compared to what a similar model costs on the market? If the buyout is equal or more, then it makes no sense whatsoever. The accident(s) will show up on the CarFax, and dealers/private buyers will use it against you when trying to trade/sell it. Even a small incident usually shows up as a pretty big claim. I wouldn't be surprised if CarFax showed $5k or more for "small damage on the side".
So what the buyout is greater then another similar used car that you have no idea who or what drove it even if it has cleaner Carfax. You drove the current car from new and knows most faults like the cosmetic damages. That along is worth the premium when thinking of returning and buying used.
Sr. Member
Mar 22, 2004
692 posts
494 upvotes
London, ON
peteryorkuca wrote: So what the buyout is greater then another similar used car that you have no idea who or what drove it even if it has cleaner Carfax. You drove the current car from new and knows most faults like the cosmetic damages. That along is worth the premium when thinking of returning and buying used.
Sure, but it comes down to numbers. OP never stated what the numbers are, and his car sounds pretty far from being "mint".
Deal Addict
Jul 21, 2009
1489 posts
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No.6 wrote: exactly. it is bent and the front camera is partially blocked. was told that the entire chrome grill needs to be replaced Crying Face
i agree. the more high end technologies it has, the more expensive to fix things.
worrying that one day the vitual cockpit will break and who knows how much it will cost to fix that
I would take the car to a indy shop to see what kind of quote they can give to fix that. That way you have a cheaper option to return the car if you go that route.
Deal Expert
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Oct 6, 2010
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I'd try and bend that sucker and free up the camera view before investing into a new grill. That's crazy pricing.
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Member
Oct 24, 2018
384 posts
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The OP could try to find a scrap yard grill where the vehicle has been rear ended. Probably half the cost of a dealership repair.

Obviously I have no idea of the situation, but in my 30+ years of owning cars I've never had one that has needed repairs like the OP describes, scratches on front, both sides, mirror, tail light, especially on vehicle of that age. Sure things happen, and can't control the actions of others who damage your vehicle, but if one of the drivers isn't confident driving then that can be remedied.

Make it fun for the both of you and attend a driving course/school together, play it like it is something you want to do for fun and ask your partner to join you. There are lots of different types of schools around Toronto, track days or rally courses, extreme weather training, even training done by manufacturers for their customers. They can be a lot of fun, and learning how to handle a car in a controlled environment with professional instructors really improves the skill and confidence of a driver. Also, it is cheaper than fixing your car as the courses probably cost less than a side mirror......

Personally I think all drivers should be forced to take driving courses every few years in order to keep a driver's license, and winter driving courses should be mandatory in Canada. That is just my humble opinion though.

I'm not trying to cause offense, just making a suggestion that I have seen work well in the past for drivers who lack just a little confidence.
Deal Fanatic
Jul 13, 2009
5069 posts
3251 upvotes
Do you have lease end protection? I'm guessing not as you already paid out of pocket for all those repairs.

If this was 33k KM and no accidents, no damage, it would be worth buying back to sell privately.

As for feeling ripped off, it's a lease. You rented a car to enjoy for those years.
[OP]
Jr. Member
Sep 10, 2006
157 posts
45 upvotes
Toronto
"I wouldn't be surprised if CarFax showed $5k or more for "small damage on the side"." - totally agree.
buyout is $28,000 and checked similar cars on autotrader its about $33,500
https://www.autotrader.ca/a/audi/a4/nor ... 3&sprx=100
ncnmra wrote: The biggest question that hasn't been answered is what is your buyout compared to what a similar model costs on the market? If the buyout is equal or more, then it makes no sense whatsoever. The accident(s) will show up on the CarFax, and dealers/private buyers will use it against you when trying to trade/sell it. Even a small incident usually shows up as a pretty big claim. I wouldn't be surprised if CarFax showed $5k or more for "small damage on the side".

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