Last post on Dec 11, 2012 at 7:27 AM
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Ford Thunderbird, Car Buying, Coupe
#24 of 63 Re: www.AutomobileInspections.com [jeff_the_chef]
by Mr_Shiftright HOST
Jun 10, 2010 (7:48 am)
Especially on the type of car where numbers are so important.
For a 1996 Toyota Corolla, maybe that other service would be okay.
To give you an idea, about 80% of the cars I am hired to look at are rejected by the prospective buyer. I think that represents two things: a), some buyers are just very fussy or b) the cars were misrepresented in the advertising and photos.
#25 of 63 Re: www.AutomobileInspections.com [jeff_the_chef]
Jun 10, 2010 (12:26 pm)
I too have used an Appraisal service twice (based out of Sausalito CA). Although the write up was very accurate and detailed, I concur with Shifty, talking to the person making the appraisal was a HUGE help for me. You can ask clarifying questions and get a general feel if your levels of "nit-pickiness" are in alignment. Just my 2 cents...
#26 of 63 Cars On Line.com
Aug 02, 2010 (7:40 am)
Has anyone ever used www.cars-on-line.com?
They are about middle cost $275, the sample report looks good (checklist and comments) and there are up to 100 photos taken.
#27 of 63 Re: Cars On Line.com [mechatech]
by Mr_Shiftright HOST
Aug 02, 2010 (10:20 am)
Not bad, really and 'better than nothing" -- but again, these are brokered inspectors, so you have no idea of the competency of the person doing the inspection, and cars-on-line doesn't either. Also, the values they state are not supported by any evidence---they seem pulled out of a hat. On what basis would you follow the value advice of these reports?
"JJ’s Auto Pre-Purchase Inspections does not do the inspection for you. JJ’s Auto Pre-Purchase Inspections is a company that facilitates the completion of your inspection through its affiliates, inspectors, or their contractors. The inspections are placed with an independent inspection service or contractor in the area where the vehicle is located."
I also found many of the comments rather useless:
'THE VEHICLE WAS TEST-DRIVEN APPROXIMATELY TWO MILES WITH SPEEDS UP TO 65 MPH. THE VEHICLE PERFORMED FAIRLY WELL DURING THE ROAD TEST. '
THE VEHICLE STOPS STRAIGHT WITH NO PULSATION. (???)
Which tells you what exactly?
Another problem I see here is this:
"Some orders will take between four days and up to a week. "
This simply is too long if the car is, in fact, a good buy. You'll end up out of luck.
Also the $275 is for a local inspection without travel. When you add a 100 mile trip, the cost goes way up.
#28 of 63 Re: www.AutomobileInspections.com [garv214]
Aug 03, 2010 (4:04 am)
I used cars on line some time ago to do an appraisal. I didn't understand how they arrived at the number without seeing the car but some how they put a value on it. I also had cause to used www.AutomobileInspections.com again a couple of weeks ago to check out an F355 Ferrari in Dallas that my wife is thinking about buying. I continue to be impressed with them and their reports. They are consistant and detailed. As for cost, $350 against a $60k purchase is not even 1%. A good deal IMHO.
#29 of 63 Re: www.AutomobileInspections.com [jeff_the_chef]
by Mr_Shiftright HOST
Aug 03, 2010 (9:25 am)
An inspector from an online internet service to inspect a Ferrari F355?
That's simply a waste of money IMO, other than to establish that the car exists.
There's no way a person not familiar with Ferraris (intimately) has a clue about these cars.
I'd advise you to never rely on such an inspection. Have the car sent to a Ferrari specialist in Dallas--there are a few good ones there. You could get burned big time if you don't.
#30 of 63 Re: www.AutomobileInspections.com [Mr_Shiftright]
Aug 20, 2010 (10:15 pm)
Automobile Inspections LLC in Hartford Connecticut... Ha!!!!
Absolutely hopeless. Had a Rolls-Royce inspected by them and they had no idea. Said they were experts but they had NEVER ever done a Rolls-Royce before. Automobile Inspections LLC claim to be experts in inspecting cars for pre-purchase but have totally unqualified inspectors who "guess" their way thru an inspection on classic cars. I had one done recently on a late 60s Rolls-Royce and I ended up spending 3 hours with an inspector explaining to him how different things on the car worked and were "supposed to be". I am a Rolls-Royce restorer of 30 years and the inspector not only did not understand the workings of the car and its various features but wanted to argue and dispute my understanding of them.
Needless to say the report was incorrect in its finding, was mis-leading and provided a very inaccurate over-view of the car. In this case, the car was a 100% original quasi show-car falling within the upper 10 percentile of examples and yet Automobile Inspections LLC, concluded it to be just a "good" car for driver purposes. This may not seem bad but the report seriously questioned the value of the car for an avid collector who engaged their services.
The guy who rocked up was driving a rusty 1990 Chevy pick-up with under-sized rims. What more can I say! He didnt even drive the car because he was "scared to".
Basically, they go thru a car and list anything they DON'T know as a fault, get paid their $350 and walk away with a "no responsibility" escape clause for any errors. Both the buyer and the seller agree that the reports are "arm-long" simply to protect Automobile Inspections LLC from any recourse from buyers (sellers are emphatically denied a copy and in fact any and all copying of a report is regarded as "theft of intellectual copyright" by Automobile Inspections LLC!) One has to ask what is the point, then, if no car gets sold because of such an over-cautious report that is not only incorrect but then cannot be shared, discussed or reviewed by any other party?!
When it comes to Classic cars, buyers want them as much as a willing seller wants to sell one. Classic cars are bought and sold out of "want", not "need". It is not like buying the next family car. What is the point of having an unqualified inspector carrying out an inspection on a car and erring on the side of negativity when he does not have knowledge on the car by providing a bad report. Who does this help? Only the inspection companies, perhaps, who get to do more reports because buyers and sellers do not conclude a deal. What a shame that such beautiful and stunning classic cars are not passed from one caretaker to another because of some ill-informed, uneducated and incompetent inspectors. I can only assume the ill-mannered personnel at Automobile Inspections LLC are most likely failures in their quest as mechanics in the real world and this is their "new job" - to scam a short-gain fee for their well below standard service. A not so lousy $350 at that! You would think for that price, they could do some internet research on the product or get a truly qualified person at that!
Automobile Inspections LLC - BUYERS and SELLERS beware.
#31 of 63 Re: www.AutomobileInspections.com [classic10]
Aug 21, 2010 (4:03 am)
It seems that you had a hard time (classic10). If I am reading your post correctly, you are the SELLER of the vehicle. It's unlikely that you would agree with the findings of any inspection - it is prepared for a car buyer after all. Your post sounds a bit like 'sour grapes' to me as your customer apparently didn't buy the car. I'm sorry, but I have wasted a LOT of money making trips to inspect cars myself (as well as on a couple using www.AutomobileInspections.com) only to find that an over-zealous dealer had hyped the cars true condition and as a result over inflated the price, then they were surprised when I walked away from the deal! Not one offered to compensate me for my wasted time or reimburse my out of pocket expenses. In one case I lost a $500 deposit because I was stupid enough to take the seller at his word. Well never again. I am currently in the market for a Corniche. I know Rolls Royces (I've owned 3 so far). I needed someone that could simply document the physical condition of the car, test the functionality of its systems and report thier unbiased findings. I can only say that I've used AutomobileInspections.com twice to look at cars that I couldn't get to myself and I found the reports to be very helpful in making my decision whether or not to make an offer on the car. The inspector didn't just report the faults but took me photos of what he'd seen, so I was able to make my own decision. On one occasion they inspected a car that I had previously seen myself. I couldn't come to terms with the seller to make the deal but I believe they found most all of the issues I did and a few I didn't. I wouldn't hesitate to use them again or recommend them to other members of the RROC (come to think of it, it was the RROC that turned me onto them!).
#32 of 63 Re: Classic car inspection? [diorije]
Aug 21, 2010 (4:13 am)
Have used www.AutomobileInspections.com on more than one occassion and was really happy with the product both times. They do use a checklist, but on my report there was also extensive notes and a TON of good photos. One of the managers also spoke with me after I received the report. All in all and I have to say he really seemed to know his stuff. I can't comment on the other two companies.
#33 of 63 Re: Classic car inspection? [jeff_the_chef]
by Mr_Shiftright HOST
Aug 21, 2010 (8:40 am)
This would be a completely inappropriate company for cars like Rolls, Ferraris, or other specialized classics, IMO. Probably okay for pickup trucks and more or less modern cars or the more common older American cars that don't require careful authentication.
You simply cannot address the needs of a situation with rare, complex or historically significant classic cars by using a national inspection service that hires brokers unseen and uncertified.