Where Can I Find Information About Buying Or Selling Cars?
NSX Classifieds Online
Newspaper Classifieds Online
Generic Online Classifieds
The larger online auction sites usually have a few NSXs listed at any given time.
Buyers Guides and Reviews
Dealer Invoice/Pricing Information
Information On Dealer Holdbacks
[BZA] I want to pass along some lessons I’ve learned about leasing. My wife and I lease all of our vehicles.
There’s nothing magic about putting more miles on your leased vehicle than the annual mileage allotment in the lease agreement, except the per-mile charge. You just have to get past the mental hurdle of going over the mileage. Now if you make it past this hurdle, you’re ready for the next point…
It may be cheaper to lease a vehicle for less miles than you’ll actually put on it AND pay the per-mile charge for the actual miles you drive. You have to do the math. For instance, it may be cheaper to sign a lease agreement for 10,000 miles/year and drive the car 15,000 miles/year and pay the excess mileage charge. AGAIN, YOU HAVE TO DO THE MATH!
Before we move on here let me define the "leasing company" to be anybody that is leasing the car to you, be it American Honda Finance, the bank, credit union or a company like GE Capital.
According to the leasing company, you have 3 choices at the end of the lease:
- Buy the car for the residual. Counterpoint: Don't pay the residual. Haggle with them over the purchase price. It's just another purchase transaction. Check the vehicle's actual market value.
- Turn it back into the leasing company. Usually the least-desirable "end game" as the leasing company may go over the vehicle with a fine-tooth comb and charge you for "abnormal wear and tear".
- Sell it yourself and pay off the lease. Counterpoint: Only if you're in an equity position. The leasing company may not have correctly guessed what the vehicle would be worth at lease end, a.k.a. "the residual". The vehicle may be worth less on the open market than the residual. Consequently you can let the leasing company take the bath by giving the vehicle back to them at lease end. The upside of this is your payments were low because the leasing company didn't expect the vehicle to depreciate so much. Bank mistake in your favor!
You can trade the car in at anytime, ANYTIME. The dealer you trade the vehicle in to pays off your lease, just as they would with a conventional loan. A common end game is to trade the car in the last month of the lease. This way the car never goes back to the leasing company and they never have a chance to ding you for all those "abnormal wear and tear" charges.
You can continue leasing the vehicle past the end of the lease on a month-to-month basis. Of course, the leasing company won’t tell you about this. They want you to lease another vehicle. You tell the leasing company you’re going to continue month-to-month and you continue paying your regular monthly payment. Trade the vehicle in or give it back to them when YOU’RE ready. Perhaps you’re waiting for the next-gen NSX and don’t want to buy/lease "something" until the V-8/V-10/V-12 400HP/500HP ceramic/aluminum completely re-designed/looks-like-the-old-one $65K/$135K monster hits the streets. The downside to this is you’ll paying slightly more than you normally would on a monthly basis because your payments were based on X months of depreciation instead of X+Y months; depreciation follows a logarithmic curve.
Leasing is just another way to finance a car.
What Is Acura’s "Pre-Owned Preferred" Program?
[A/H] ACURA OFFERS YET ANOTHER way of enjoying a unique and satisfying driving experience. Acura Preferred Pre-Owned Vehicles.
Acura Preferred Pre-Owned vehicles, available only at select Acura dealerships, are carefully screened and must undergo a rigorous mechanical and cosmetic inspection. Eligible vehicles must meet a strict factory-set standard that ensures unparalleled value, reliability and performance. In truth, not even every Acura is eligible to become a Preferred Pre-Owned Vehicle.
Depending on the model year and mileage of your Acura at the time of Preferred delivery, the owner receives the balance of any existing Acura new vehicle Limited Warranties. Plus the owner receives the Preferred Limited Warranty for 12 months or 12,000 miles, whichever occurs first, for 1993 or later Acuras with 50,000 miles or less.
And the owner pays no deductible charges for repairs covered under the Preferred Limited Warranty. In addition, the owner has the opportunity to extend Acura-backed protection with a 12-month/12,000 mile or 24-month/24,000 mile Preferred Acura Care service contract.
In addition to this, Acura Roadside Assistance and oncierge Service is provided at no additional cost for the entire period of the limited warranty. This special benefit includes 24-hour service through Acura’s toll-free number, towing, flat-tire change and lockout service, trip interruption benefits for warranted repairs and Trip Routing maps. For complete details on the Acura Roadside Assistance Program click to Owner Services.
[RCH – 99/3/15] Since the dealers do their own certification, make sure that you go over the check list with them. I bought a certified 94 from an Acura dealer in the Northwest. The brakes and tires were almost completely worn out. And there were many more defects. Luckily most of these are covered by the extended warranty.
It’s very tricky because the car is sold "as is". Once you buy the car, you pretty much have no say on the condition of the car even if it’s not up to " pre-owned preferred" standard.
What Are VIN Lookup / Title Check Services?
VINguard is a service which provides prospective buyers with a history of the vehicle including potential odometer tampering, flood damage and salvage title. VINguard data goes back to 1980. The service costs $19.95 whether you call (1-800-332-4699 6 a.m. to 11 p.m. Monday through Friday, 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. Saturday, 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. Sunday) or use its Web site (www.vehiclehistoryreport.com).
CarFax has reports for nine areas of potential concern. If there’s a problem in any of those areas, it gives a detailed explanation of the problem, such as that a salvage certificate was issued. CarFax data goes back to 1981. You can call CarFax at 1-800-346-3846 from 7:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. central time Monday through Friday. The charge is $20. Or you can reach CarFax via the Internet at http://www.carfaxreport.com 24 hours a day. The charge is $12.50.
[JR] I used Carfax when I bought my 94 NSX, although I didnt run the report until after I signed the papers! Smart, huh? Anyway – it also said potential odometer rollback – it showed registered inVA at 75K miles, and the odometer showed only 26K.
After a panic filled 3 day investigation, I finally found out that Carfax was wrong. Someone had put a 7 into the computer instead of a 2. The VA Dept of Motor Vehicles had the correct 25K in their computers.
One thing you can do is to call Acura customer service and ask them to look at the warranty service records – they have the mileage and the date that the dealer submitted the claim. This might give you some idea about the mileage and the time period. Good luck.
How To Fix An Incorrect CarFax Report
[JFE – 2000/7/24] In buying my car, I found that the carfax printout was incorrect and had to go through a correction process with them. I know that there are other people on the list as well that would like to get theirs corrected. So, I thought you might want to post the correction process on the FAQ’s for any carfax errors. The process is:
a) Contact Carfax through their website under "contact carfax" and send them an email telling them you would like to correct some data problems in your report
b) You will receive back a couple of forms. One will be the guidelines showing what types of data can be fixed and the other will be a form to complete and mail in with any supporting documentation possible.
c) After about a week, you should hear back from someone (I actually received a phone call) letting you know whether your data correction has been fixed or not.
One final note…in my case, I had a problem with the mileage that was reported. They had recorded 49,000 miles instead of 4,900 miles (big difference!). I just had to submit a copy of some service receipts from around that same date (give or take 6 months or so) as proof. Well, to correct the problem, all they did was delete that particular entry off the report. I asked them why they couldn’t just change the mileage to the correct number and they said that their process is to delete any invalid information completely out of their database. So now I know why some car reports seem to contain some time gaps in their history. Interesting.
[BZA – 99/8/18] Be advised that there is still a risk of getting a totalled vehicle even though Carfax shows a clean title. Case in Point: The ’97 NSX was totalled on January 9, 1999 in Phoenix. I know this because the car below used to be mine. I’ve cut and pasted the carfax report verbatim below.
When I read the lines,"RESULT: CLEAN TITLE HISTORY GUARANTEED FOR THIS VEHICLE " and "There could be other potential problems with this vehicle that have not been reported to Carfax.", I had to chuckle. At least they got the mileage on the odometer right. Caveat Emptor.
Vehicle ID: JH4NA2168VT000172Yr/Mfg: 1997 AcuraModel: NSXBody: 2D Conv. 2-seat carEngine: 3.0L V6 PFI DOHC 24VFuel: GasolineDriveline: Rear-wheel driveAspiration: NormalCountry Mfg.: Japan
RESULT: CLEAN TITLE HISTORY GUARANTEED FOR THIS VEHICLE
The VIN submitted was checked against the Carfax database to determine if any title document for this 1997 Acura was designated or marked with any of the following types of problems:
Salvage/Junk Title Checked. No Problem Title Found.Rebuilt/Reconstructed Title Checked. No Problem Title Found.Flood Damage Title Checked. No Problem Title Found.Damage Disclosure Title Checked. No Problem Title Found.Manufacturer Buyback (LEMON) Title Checked. No Problem Title Found.Exceeds Mechanical Limits Title Checked. No Problem Title Found.Not Actual Mileage Title Checked. No Problem Title Found.
For information on the Clean Title History Guarantee, see section 5.
RESULT: No odometer rollback detected in the Carfax database.
The VIN submitted for this 1997 Acura was checked against the Carfax database to determine if any reported odometer reading is less than a previous reading.
The Carfax database contains the following information about this 1997 Acura:
DATE ODOMETER INFORMATION GENERALREPORTED READING SOURCE COMMENTS
09/09/1997 84 Arizona First lien reportedMotor Vehicle Dept.Mesa, AZTitle #T13V972510351
09/09/1997 Arizona First lien reportedMotor Vehicle Dept.Mesa, AZTitle #T13V972510351
07/20/1999 16,954 New Jersey Title or registrationMotor Vehicle Dept. issuedFort Lee, NJTitle #JH4NA2168VT000172
07/22/1999 New Jersey Title or registrationMotor Vehicle Dept. issuedBergenfield, NJTitle #JH4NA2168VT000172
NOTE: You have significantly reduced your risk of purchasing a vehicle with a hidden problem. However, Carfax has not inspected this vehicle. There could be other potential problems with this vehicle that have not been reported to Carfax.
NOTE: Not all titles issued represent a change in vehicle ownership. For example, a title could be issued to reflect an address change or correction.
Carfax agrees to pay to the holder of this report 10% of the wholesale value of the car, up to $1,000, if Section 2 of this report indicates a Clean Title History and a Problem Title actually exists for this vehicle. A Problem Title is defined as a passenger motor vehicle ownership document issued by the state that bears the word or symbol signifying that the vehicle was salvaged or junked; rebuilt or reconstructed; flood damaged; disclosed as damaged; bought back by the manufacturer; odometer exceeds mechanical limits; odometer was not the actual mileage; or any other symbol or word of like kind. The individual or entity must have ownership of the vehicle in question at the time a claim is made. This offer is not valid with any other guarantee offered by Carfax.
For complete terms and conditions of the Carfax Clean Title History Guarantee ask your authorized Carfax subscriber for a Clean Title History Guarantee certificate, or a copy of "A Consumers Guide to Buying a Quality Used Vehicle." The terms and conditions also appear on the Carfax Web site at www.carfax.com or may be obtained by writing to Carfax.
CARFAX DEPENDS ON ITS SOURCES FOR THE ACCURACY AND RELIABILITY OF ITS INFORMATION. THEREFORE, NO RESPONSIBILITY IS ASSUMED BY CARFAX OR ITS AGENTS FOR ERRORS OR OMISSIONS IN THIS REPORT. CARFAX FURTHER EXPRESSLY DISCLAIMS ALL WARRANTIES, EXPRESS OR IMPLIED, INCLUDING ANY IMPLIED WARRANTIES OF MERCHANTABILITY OR FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE. CARFAX(R)
[MCS – 99/8/19] Yes, this particular ’97 NSX that Bill Zachar asked me to run back in June came back exactly as he stated, with no title problems found. However, he and I knew (after he filled me in) that this car was his and had indeed been totalled.
I immediately contacted Carfax directly regarding this and was informed that "totaled" and "salvaged" titles take a "while" for their database to update. I asked about how long is a "while" and was told it can be anywhere from 90 days to a year, with no guarantees! But I was assured that "eventually" it does get updated.
[email@example.com – 99/11/15] Just for laughs I ran my VIN against the CarFax database. The first screen told me: IMPORTANT!: While running this LemonCheck, CarFax identified 4 Vehicle History Records about this 1990 Ferrari Testarossa.
Reading this, I figured that there was something interesting that I didn’t know about the car. Wanna know what the "Important" history records were? The mileage for the last four emissions tests!! And this *only* cost $14.95. What a rip off!
Granted, I realize that not every car is going to have an interesting history. My objection is how they bait you by saying that they have "Important" information. I guess I was expecting a lot more information. Thought I would post this just to set expectations for folk who have never used this "service".
[JR] I used Carfax to check the VIN of my 94 NSX (you probably have seen my story), and they came back with a good report showing 6 or 7 entries, multiple states DMV’s, and even an entry for an auction sale.
I thought I would try VINguard and see if they had anything more. Hehehe, well, they only had 1 entry, the one where is was originally titled with 53 miles. Thats the only thing they knew about the car.
CarFax is $12.95 and VINguard is $19.95.
I wouldnt recommend that anyone use vehiclehistoryreport.com, since it did not even have the most simple data from the DMV's. Could lead you to think a car is just fine.
What About Third Party Sales?
[JT] Sold my NSX through its mention on the list. However, just a friendly word of advice to those of you solicited by CAC, as I was. They very aggressively hounded me via e-mail and phone with the promise to get me a buyer in very short order. I put them off for several days but finally succumbed to their promises. Their first priority was to get my credit card info and to hell with accuracy as they totally screwed up the copy and initial viewers got a very unappealling description (a list of OEM equipment present on all NSXs ie "loaded"). Net result: one inquiry in 5 weeks – a ridiculously low one at that. Bottom line — I threw out $188. To quote Ceaser,"race ipsa loquitor", or is it "caveat emptor", or "habeas corpus", or "semper fidelis"? Hey, it’s your money guys.