Automotive

Used car dealership did not disclose 10k wreck. Possible arbitrage opportunity?

  • Last Updated:
  • Feb 25th, 2020 7:10 pm
[OP]
Jr. Member
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Feb 22, 2020
118 posts
223 upvotes
Calgary

Used car dealership did not disclose 10k wreck. Possible arbitrage opportunity?

Hello everyone, I searched through the forums and mostly stumbled upon people discovering that their cars were involved in a wreck AFTER they signed the contract or bought the car. My case is thankfully different.
I managed to convince a used car dealer to drop the price on an SUV by almost 1.5k, which is around 10% of the sticker price. I did my homework beforehand and knew what the car was worth if it had a clean title and was accident-free. The price I managed to negotiate down to was only 700$ more than the market price listed on carfax's estimator. While I was a the dealership, I did my initial visual inspection where I took down notes, used a flashlight, test drive...etc. all the good stuff I learned from youtube and google. Knowing that I'm paying a premium for the ease of mind and legal protections offered through dealerships, I asked all the right questions (but did not record them) such as has the vehicle even been in a wreck (they say never and they can show me the clean carproof), was it a rental, how many previous owners...etc

After I got back home and seeing 6 other cars, I decided this was gonna be the one (it was mint clean for its age and perfectly fit my needs). So I bought a carfax for it and low and behold, the car has 10k in damage from a "LEFT FRONT CORNER" collision. I was pissed, so I looked it up and in my province MB, and found out that I am able to file a complaint against them since I have an archived link of the false-advertisement they have up on kijiji which explicitly says "clean-title and carproof".

Now here comes my question, should I just report them and move on? Or should I leverage this to my advantage as a true RFDer and demand the price to be dropped to 10k (sticker price 15.5k and carfax's estimator is 13.3k based on the VIN, excluding the damage report)?
If you suggest option #2, what would you recommend me doing? Should I ask them for the carproof and see if they provide me with a fake one, further increasing my leverage or should I just have a mechanic inspect it first to make sure the 10k damage was just bodywork and didn't affect the frame or mechanical components?

And let's say the mechanic clears it, do I send them my offer as well as confront them face-to-face or send them an email to keep a paper record in case they don't cooperate? Also, would this be considered blackmail or am I within my rights to demand a better price for not reporting them to consumer protection?

I know I'll be taking a hit in the resale value when I decide to sell it later on, but I'm planning on holding it for 10 years or so, so it doesn't really matter.

Looking forward to hearing your thoughts on this.
17 replies
Deal Addict
Jul 28, 2007
1353 posts
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If the ad says "clean title and carproof" that does not mean "no accidents". Clean title refers to the registration and carproof refers to them being able to offer you the carproof report, which it sounds like you didn't look at while you were at the dealership.

The only false claim sounds like a verbal one ("never been in a wreck"), but even that comes down to wording (a wreck is writeoff, not an accident imo) and that would be your word against theirs. You could ask for the carproof now and see what happens, but I'm guessing they will point out all of the above.
[OP]
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Feb 22, 2020
118 posts
223 upvotes
Calgary
I ended up deciding to drop the issue. I was just a bit butthurt that I almost got suckered into putting a deposit on this POS. Private sellers are no better, they ask for insane prices and refuse to budge thinking they can sell them for the same price as a dealer, where at least you have some legal protection with a dealer, whereas you're buying everything at your own risk from a private seller.

It's all so tiresome, can't wait for this ordeal to be over with.
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Dec 15, 2017
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Tell them you will buy the car if they put in writing in a document that the vehicle has had no accidents or wrecks. When they give you document go to OMVIC or whoever you have to go to and report them.
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Apr 16, 2007
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cedarleaf wrote: has the vehicle even been in a wreck (they say never and they can show me the clean carproof), was it a rental, how many previous owners...etc

So I bought a carfax for it and low and behold, the car has 10k in damage from a "LEFT FRONT CORNER" collision. I was pissed, so I looked it up and in my province MB,

clean-title and carproof".

Looking forward to hearing your thoughts on this.
Carproof and CarFax are two different entities.
There may be data on one that is missing on the other. It happens.

Moreover, who was the last owner before the dealership?
It's highly probable that the person did not disclose the accident when he traded it in. That happens a lot too.
The person buying the new car with a trade is not going to diminish the trade value, buyers do lie if not always lie about their trade.
Lastly, request to see the Carproof from the dealer. Note the date on it. Possible Carproof pull before the insurance claim reported.
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Mar 1, 2005
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mikeymike1 wrote: Carproof and CarFax are two different entities.
There may be data on one that is missing on the other. It happens.

Moreover, who was the last owner before the dealership?
It's highly probable that the person did not disclose the accident when he traded it in. That happens a lot too.
The person buying the new car with a trade is not going to diminish the trade value, buyers do lie if not always lie about their trade.
Lastly, request to see the Carproof from the dealer. Note the date on it. Possible Carproof pull before the insurance claim reported.
Carproof was bought by Carfax.
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Jul 5, 2011
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mikeymike1 wrote: Carproof and CarFax are two different entities.
There may be data on one that is missing on the other. It happens.

Moreover, who was the last owner before the dealership?
It's highly probable that the person did not disclose the accident when he traded it in. That happens a lot too.
The person buying the new car with a trade is not going to diminish the trade value, buyers do lie if not always lie about their trade.
Lastly, request to see the Carproof from the dealer. Note the date on it. Possible Carproof pull before the insurance claim reported.
Carproof doesn't exist anymore.. Carfax took them over.

But yes this could be correct - dealers get suckered by consumers all the time that have a recent accident that doesn't show on the Carfax during the appraisal. Car hits the dealer lot with a presumed accident free history, then it populates into Carfax after.
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Apr 16, 2007
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BeaverLiquor wrote: Carproof was bought by Carfax.
Yes but they operated independently for a short while afterwards
I think this is evident considering the OP stated the dealer he bought his car from was talking about 'CarProof' and the OP pulled a "CarFax" afterwards
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Mar 1, 2005
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mikeymike1 wrote: Yes but they operated independently for a short while afterwards
I think this is evident considering the OP stated the dealer he bought his car from was talking about 'CarProof' and the OP pulled a "CarFax" afterwards
Carproof was rebranded near the end of 2018 as Carfax Canada, dealer was trying to scam buyers with old reports.
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Member
Dec 1, 2014
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MusicBox wrote: Tell them you will buy the car if they put in writing in a document that the vehicle has had no accidents or wrecks. When they give you document go to OMVIC or whoever you have to go to and report them.
The buyer would be wasting his/her valuable time and knowingly entering into a legal battle when obviously it's much easier to walk away. Not worth it and plenty of other cars on the market.
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Mar 18, 2011
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In most cases, the dealer barely knows anything about the car. It's just best to get the carfax, inspect the car thoroughly (inside and out), test drive, and have a PPI done before you even consider purchasing it. Walk away if the dealer refuses any of these requests.
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Deal Addict
Nov 12, 2004
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xjesterxx wrote: Carproof doesn't exist anymore.. Carfax took them over.

But yes this could be correct - dealers get suckered by consumers all the time that have a recent accident that doesn't show on the Carfax during the appraisal. Car hits the dealer lot with a presumed accident free history, then it populates into Carfax after.
This is true, know of a case where a woman lied in writing to the dealership with a signature on a questionnaire. Also verbally in front of 2 employees when she traded in a SUV. Dealer had it sold it before it physically arrived. Rushed it through certification when it did.

Anyhow the new owner a couple weeks later took it to have custom mud flaps and fender flares installed. Asked the body shop are you sure you can match the paint on these add-ons... Body shop owner goes you are kidding right? New customers goes no why. The body shop owners goes well we PAINTED these 2 panels and blended them to match.....

What do you mean you painted them. This vehicle was in an accident we fixed it.

Jump forward to the court case when the dealership won in court for the costs of having to make it right with the new owner, against the woman who lied. Her lawyer was telling the dealership seriously give it up guys, NO WAY you can win.... Probably would have right but she had paid the body by cheque not cash.... Which funnily enough had a signature that exactly matched the one on the questionnaire avowing her vehicle had NEVER been in an accident to the best of her knowledge. (Probably did not hurt the judge and dealership owner were golfing buddies but it is a small town and everyone knows everyone anyhow)
Sr. Member
Nov 6, 2013
654 posts
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Pretty sure your only recourse would have been if you bought the vehicle and did not sign the Carfax MB Disclosure form. Dealer is required by law to inform the customer if a vehicle has been in an accident of $3,000 or higher.

If that happened, you have grounds.
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Oct 26, 2003
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Can you not look up the accident history using the Vin number? I know you can in Saskatchewan.
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OMVIC forced a dealer to buy back a car I bought a while ago due to undisclosed accidents, and they actually showed up on CarProof (when they were separate from CarFax,) but they didn't show up on CarFax (which is the report the dealer gave me.)
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May 23, 2008
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A "dealer" showed me once a Carfax report that showed the car had no accident. It had the right VIN.
When I got home, I checked Carfax myself with that VIN and I got a report that was showing the car was totaled and rebuilt.
The guy was good at Photoshop, not only at selling cars :)
So don't trust what the dealer show you.
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@RaidZero , Ask them to send you the url/link via email so you know it's current, though I guess that doesn't help a ton if your just initially looking...

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