It's been about 24 hours and I haven't heard back. I emailed the seller and called the number on the listing yesterday, and I just emailed again this morning.
I would call again except for one problem... I've got a nasty cold and lost my voice. I was pretty hoarse yesterday and I guess it's possible he couldn't understand my phone number on the voicemail. I did say it three different times because I was concerned it would be difficult to understand.
Anyway, he's added pictures to the listing. Here are some attached to this post for posterity.
So I finally got one response, just four words, "Where are you located?". No answers to my other questions. I responded with by telling him the area I'm in, and asked again for the VIN, and whatever maintenance records he has...
A VERY NICE HARD TO FIND 5 SPEED TURBO DIESEL WAGON,WELL TAKEN CARE OF AND SERVICE//LOADED AS WELL AS A 2003 TURBO DIESL WAGON GETS//POWER MOON ROOF/POWER WINDOWS AND LOCKS//RUNS LOOKS GREAT ,LOW MILES, CAR FAX CERTIFIED NO ACCIDENT WAGON//
I called and spoke to one of their sales guys, he said it's in good shape (of course... like he would say anything else! ). He said he has paperwork showing the timing belt and water pump were replaced in the last 40,000 miles. I asked him to fax me that along with the Carfax report that.
The Blue Book on this vehicle is $5980 to $7580, depending on condition. The Edmund's True Market Value is $6757 for a "clean" vehicle. So he's on the high end... but as others have noted, it seems that these vehicles sell for prices that don't necessarily align with their Blue Book or Edmunds.com values.
I feel somewhat wary about buying from a dealer... I don't know why, but I just feel like I'm more likely to get ripped off. I couldn't exactly tell you why. But maybe I'm just being paranoid?
Talked to the dealer a number of times. I haven't seen it yet but the only issue according to the dealer is a crack in the passenger rear view mirror.
The price we agreed to is $7000 out the door. $6785 purchase price, $200 doc fee, and $15 temp tags. Since I'm out of state I will have to register and title it in my home state. I've already talked to my DMV and figured out those prices as well (around $380).
Think I've done alright? I haven't actually seen it in person yet, and there's a chance I'll see it and see some major defect that causes me to cancel my purchase. But hopefully not!
try to get them to through in any accesories like monster mats, cargo nets, maybe lifetime oil changes or inspections. the price is not bad but that just seems alot to pay for a almost 10 year old car with over 100k. plus who knows about the condition of the clutch.
The repair in Aurora CO seemed pretty weird. I actually called that dealership, explained I was thinking about buying this vehicle, and that it seemed odd that it would have been repaired half way across the country from where it was titled (and is now available for sale).
The technician I spoke to was very courteous and helpful. He looked up their records, confirmed that they did work on this vehicle, that they replaced the head and the injection pump to the tune of $2000 (and remarked "it must be in great shape now that we've done that!" ). The vehicle was towed in, not driven in. We both thought the most likely explanation was that the was on a trip, the car broke down, and so he got it repaired at the nearest VW dealership.
It's only made it 2278 miles since that repair, so it seems like he basically drove it home and sold it almost immediately.
There are lots of records of oil and filter changes as well.
I'll definitely see if I can get anything else thrown in... in my very limited experience, thought, $7000 is a fair price for a TDI Jetta Wagon. I just missed a very similar one that sold for $7500.
Well, I have to admit this has been somewhat discouraging. Just to briefly recap, here's what I've learned about this particular 2003 TDI Jetta Wagon:
1) The timing belt job was done by Green Car Company, which has earned a bad reputation on tdiclub.com
2) Shortly after the timing belt was replaced, the vehicle was completely disabled, towed to a repair shop, and the engine head and injection pump were replaced
3) The owner then drove the vehicle home to DC, and sold it immediately. Sounds like he was dumping it. He had only owned it for two months at that point.
4) Based on the cost of the engine head and injection pump repair, it sounds like used parts were put in.
5) The timing belt may still not be done right, and there could be additional engine damage because of that.
6) I could easily get saddled with an unexpected repair bill of $2000+
I can't tell you how much I wanted to disbelieve what I've been reading and just go ahead and buy it. But I just can't bring myself to do it.
If I was a diesel engine mechanic, I would snap it up right now. But I'm not, and I don't have access to anyone at the moment who can look it over. If I can find a guru near this dealer, I may ask to take it there... but most likely this is going to be another "pass" for me.
Looks like I'll be driving my old gas Bonneville for a good while longer. :-/
My exact first thought on reading through the list of repairs on that car was "Hmm...timing belt done at some odd shop. I wonder if everything was replaced that should have been and if they did the job correctly". Then I saw the head replacement not long after and had my question answered. TDIs are picky little cars with their maintenance. It needs to be done on time and correctly, especially the timing belt job. Though I'm not sure why the IP would have been replaced when a timing belt job failed, so that raises another red flag to me.
TDIs command a premium for sure. They are good cars but maintenance is definitely key. If you do end up getting one, make sure you go through TDIClub's list of gurus and find one to help you with maintenance. They know the cars inside and out.
How much driving do you do? That is really what says if a TDI is really worth getting into. If its a lot of city driving or under about 15k a year, a TDI really isn't a great buy. Maintenance costs a little more (the correct oil is very important, fuel filters every 20k...) and of course fuel costs more, though you get more for your money. I thought about picking up a TDI after my Beetle was totaled last year, but between the price and how hard they can be to come by I passed and picked up my GTI. My husband snagged a TDI earlier this year for crazy cheap because the auto was trashed at 114k. But he's contemplating picking up something else. Not sure though. We don't drive all that much honestly so the extra costs are hard to justify.
We do love that TDI. We also have an old IDI (indirect injection) turbo diesel '84 Jetta. Diesels are great, but they certainly aren't for everyone.
__________________ Mine: 20th AE GTI, BMP, 123k, stock...for now His: '01 Jetta TDI, 122k, auto -> manual swap The project: '84 Jetta GL TD, Giles IP, 2.5" downpipe and exhaust, full rebuild done winter 2010/2011
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