Published in the November 2013 issue of “Die Porsche Kassette”
So, you want to buy a used Porsche. Good for you!
Porsches are one of the best cars to purchase used for many reasons, among them:
• Porsches make the best mid-life crisis fulfillment, I know, I’ve had nine ... cars, not mid-life crises
• Porsches are generally well-cared-for cars by their owners
• Porsches are built to last
• Porsches look great ... especially the oldies
• Someone else took the new car depreciation hit
This is one of the best times to purchase used because it’s a buyer’s market, but the experience could get overwhelming if you don’t have a plan.
There are a bunch of questions you need to ask, such as:
Which car do you want?
Are you looking for a sporty two-seater (Boxster/Cayman) or do you need the rear seats in the Carrera?
Maybe you’re looking for the comfort of the Panamera or the utility of the Cayenne.
You should have your wish-list of what you want and which are the must-haves (options, engine/HP, transmission, colors, etc.).
Where do you find it?
There are several places where you can go look, such as: Cars.com, AutoTrader.com, CraigsList.com, eBay.com, and multiple Internet boards such as PedrosBoard.com, Rennlist.com, PCA.org, etc.
You can look in your geographic area, but if you don’t find your dream Porsche, extend the search area. Many buyers have realized that their particular location might be a detriment to their search so they have started looking in the two heaviest-populated Porsche regions in the world: Southern Florida and Southern California. The other advantage of looking in these two areas is that the winters are very mild, thus there are many cabriolets available and there is no salt/slush on the roads making for a cleaner undercarriage with very little metal corrosion and paint damage.
When buying a pre-owned car you can buy form the owner/seller or through a dealer.
Whatever you do, make sure that you get a PPI (PrePurchase Inspection) from an independent and reputable source. A knowledgeable inspector can save you thousands of dollars and thousands of future headaches for a small investment.
Not every mechanic is a good inspector. Good inspectors specialize in air-cooled, water-cooled, mid-engine, SUVs, etc. Every one of these cars has it’s own nuances and quirks and it takes a real expert to find them and put them in the PPI report so you have the correct information. For instance an air-cooled specialist may not pick up the fact that a water cooled car is leaking from the IMS bearing instead of from the rear main seal, and that makes a BIG difference.
Also, in the recent past there has been an inordinate amount of water-damaged vehicles due to floods and storms. You need to make sure your next purchase is not one of them. Right now flooded cars are “washing up” all over the country: TX - 30,000, NJ - 28,000, PA - 13,500, KY, IL, LA, and NY - 10,000 each, FL, MS, VA with 8,000 each! These figures are water-damaged cars that were put back on the roads!
A proper PPI will also include multiple photos and a written report which explains, among others, the condition of the exterior (OEM, paint thickness measurement in every body panel, whether it’s been resprayed, if it’s had any body work/accident), the condition of the interior, of all of the electronics, the powertrain (engine, transmission, suspension), etc.
The PPI will also tell you which factory options came with the car.
You should also get a list of the cost of any repairs required and a fair market value of the vehicle which will help you make an informed decision.
When purchasing a used Porsche, the only time you do not need a PPI is when purchasing a CPO’d (Certified Pre-Owned) Porsche from a Porsche Dealer. A used Porsche will have to be put through a battery of tests to be a CPO’d car, and will need to meet special requirements that Porsche demands plus it will include a very thorough warranty valid at any Porsche Dealer.
Many people rely on just a CarFax to make their used-car buying decision. Although a CarFax is a good resource you need keep in mind that the CarFax will only show the information that has been reported to them and there’s a lot of information that never gets reported.
So, what are you waiting for?
Go to your laptop, tablet or smartphone and let the searching begin!!!!
Good luck hunting.
To learn more about PPIs and used car purchases, please visit my website at: wwwPedrosGarage.com.
Ⓒ2013 Technolab / PedrosGarage.com