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View Poll Results: The max km you are comfortable with, when buying used?
<25,000 km 170 27.38%
26,000 - 49,000 km 306 49.28%
50,000 - 74,000 km 67 10.79%
75,000 - 99,000 km 14 2.25%
I'm okay with 100,000+ km cars 64 10.31%
Voters: 621. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 21st February 2020, 12:12   #1
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Default Used Cars: Your upper limit for the km / odometer reading

As some of you know by now, I'm a big fan of pre-worshipped cars and there are many useful articles on Team-BHP listing the benefits of the same - sample thread (The 'not-so-obvious' advantages to buying pre-owned cars).

Say, you are out shopping for a pre-owned car this weekend. What would be the max km reading that you are comfortable with? Above which point will you say NO to even checking out a car?

My personal cap is 40,000 km. There is no scientific reason for it, but:

- I feel a well-maintained 30,000 odd km car can still "look & feel like new".

- 50,000 km sounds like too much to my ears. It's probably a mental block (similar psychological reason why many cars are priced at 4.99 lakhs instead of 5 lakhs).

I don't mind owning a 100,000+ km car, as long as a majority of those km have been driven by me & hence, I know the car's full history. But no way am I comfortable with buying someone else's high-mileage car.

On a related note, even though I'm open to <40,000 km used cars, the last 3 pre-owned cars I bought had ~3,000, ~7,000 & ~19,000 km on their odos .

Please vote in the poll

Last edited by GTO : 21st February 2020 at 12:22.
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Old 21st February 2020, 12:29   #2
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Default Re: Used Cars: Your upper limit for the km / odometer reading

In India I would almost never consider anything with over 49,000 km on the clock for a daily driver. Anything below that is fine. That's purely due to the poor road conditions and the climate. I always take my time finding good used cars and till date, my experiences have been good.

I will make an exception to this rule if I am looking to purchase a classic that will rest in the garage for most of the week, or it's a rare vehicle that I really want.

On the other hand, I would be very careful if I find a 10 year old car with less than 10,000 km on the odo.
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Old 21st February 2020, 12:45   #3
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Default Re: Used Cars: Your upper limit for the km / odometer reading

Very cool thread. I won't be comfortable beyond 49,000km unless I know clear history of the car, which in almost all cases is near impossible unless it belongs to our friends and relatives.

And also I am not comfortable with low mileage old cars(read >10years).

Interesting topic, thanks for bringing it up.
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Old 21st February 2020, 13:08   #4
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Default Re: Used Cars: Your upper limit for the km / odometer reading

As long as a car starts, runs, stops as it should, and has clean paperwork, I have no issues with the odometer reading. I do verify the service history and get the car checked, though. If a car that has run for 1,00,000 plus kilomteres has been properly taken care of, I see no reason why I wouldn't buy it.
I'm extremely particular about the paperwork though, if a brand new/perfectly running car has even a single shred of paperwork that's not in order, I'll walk away.

Last edited by boniver : 21st February 2020 at 13:09.
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Old 21st February 2020, 13:23   #5
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Default Re: Used Cars: Your upper limit for the km / odometer reading

Voted for < 25,000 kms although, to be honest, it depends on the car and the way it has been used. A couple of months back, I checked out a used Figo diesel for a friend. At genuine 30,000 kms, it was in terrible shape whereas another car parked at the same dealer, a Nissan Sunny, felt tight even after 1.85 lakh kms. The Sunny was also 5 years older than the Figo. It was a pleasant surprise when we came to know the odometer reading as the MID wasn't set to display total odometer during the test drive.

So it all depends on the upkeep and maintenance. I'm personally averse to used cars but a 2-3 year old car with 25,000 genuine clicks will be an ideal choice if there's no other choice. Even a 6-7 year old car with proper service records is acceptable but 20,000-30,000 kms would be the comfortable zone for me.

Last edited by self_driven : 21st February 2020 at 13:31.
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Old 21st February 2020, 13:36   #6
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Default Re: Used Cars: Your upper limit for the km / odometer reading

I think the big question to ask is, will you buy a 40k km driven example from a non enthusiast vs a 75k km driven car from a Bhpian, whom you know has maintained the car well?

Personally, I'd prefer highway driven cars which have done high mileage in very little time, say 50k kms in 2 years. Wear and tear will be very less, apart from better bargaining rights. These are rare cases but I guess they'll be worth. If anything was wrong, it would've already been replaced under warranty!
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Old 21st February 2020, 13:42   #7
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Default Re: Used Cars: Your upper limit for the km / odometer reading

Voted for 26,000 to 49,000.

Most of the used cars fall under this range. It is a perfect range as the price of the car also would have depreciated and insurance premium also will be low.
When I was in hunt for used Duster, I had the similar range in my mind. Fortunately, I got a Duster which was just 8500 kms on ODO. The model was 2016 registered and I bought in 2018 for 8 lakhs with one year warranty from Trident used cars. What more? I replaced steering rack in the warranty period. This part was defective and the first owner never took pain to get it replaced. May be he never noticed it.

Lesson learnt: Buy always used car from reputed sales and company owned used cars outlet. It might be slightly costly than the other outlets but it's worth every penny.
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Old 21st February 2020, 13:50   #8
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Default Re: Used Cars: Your upper limit for the km / odometer reading

Do we need another poll option: "I'm okay with 100,000 km Toyotas "?
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Old 21st February 2020, 14:30   #9
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Default Re: Used Cars: Your upper limit for the km / odometer reading

My Vote was for < 25000, since the chances of the car being sold for anything under that would most likely have warranty, less wear and tear, most recent tech and optimal depreciation!

Of course, all of this will depend also on how old the car itself is, and how well it been cared for. Therefore, in addition, I'd also consider an upper limit of 4 years for any used car I'd consider.
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Old 21st February 2020, 14:37   #10
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Default Re: Used Cars: Your upper limit for the km / odometer reading

I bought by Brio when it was 19K KM on the ODO and sold it with more than 50K. I have a limit of 30K KM however this option was not available so voted for <25000
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Old 21st February 2020, 14:49   #11
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Default Re: Used Cars: Your upper limit for the km / odometer reading

Voted for 2nd option, 26k to 40k kms.

But I would not go beyond 35k-37k kms.
Even with a low running, I would prefer if the car is more than 4-5 years old.

I don't know why I feel this, but its just out of my comfort level.

I had brought my first pre-owned car which was 4 years and 32,000 kms run.
Used it for a good 30,000 kms more before selling it. No major technical work was required during the ownership period.
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Old 21st February 2020, 15:01   #12
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Default Re: Used Cars: Your upper limit for the km / odometer reading

It is not just the mileage that matters, what matters more is how well kept the car has been. A diligently serviced car with 100k on the odo can be better than say a 40k recklessly driven ill maintained car. However, the likelihood of finding good cars diminishes exponentially with age and mileage.

My thumb rule is 50k and 5 years. That kind of balances depreciation losses and maintenance costs. Something like buy at 5 years + 50k (first owner) and sell at 7 years + 70k and keep lateral upgrading.

Last edited by Thermodynamics : 21st February 2020 at 15:06.
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Old 21st February 2020, 15:54   #13
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Default Re: Used Cars: Your upper limit for the km / odometer reading

I voted for less than 25000 because here you get a car that 95 percent gives you that new car feeling if it is properly maintained. You most probably get warranty also.In short a brand new like car with awesome savings.
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Old 21st February 2020, 16:04   #14
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Default Re: Used Cars: Your upper limit for the km / odometer reading

We have bought many used cars over the years and usually we look at relatively new cars with odometers showing less than 20k kms. The only exception was the Innova which had done 30k kms when we bought it used. But for the purpose of the poll, I would consider cars till the 40-50k km mark. Anything over that is a strict No for me as I feel the abuse a car suffers on our roads makes most components take a beating over that figure. Also the interiors too start showing off wear and tear which takes away from the pleasure of a owning a car.
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Old 21st February 2020, 16:26   #15
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Default Re: Used Cars: Your upper limit for the km / odometer reading

This is largely relative. I'll give 2 examples -

1. Last June, I bought a pre-owned, 2014 Swift Dzire AT for my other half. The car had 55000 kms on the ODO, but was clean on the outside, and the engine was running as tight as it would on day 1. I picked it up from a Maruti dealership and checked the entire service history of the car, which gave me peace of mind even if the ODO read 55,000 kms.

2. A few years ago, a close friend bought an Innova from some one in his family. He picked it up with 200,000 kms on the ODO, and all of us told him that it was a bad idea. Today, the same Innova has 450,000+ kms on the ODO, and still drives well.

Would I buy a diesel car with over 80-90000 kms on the ODO? Perhaps not. Unless I buy it from someone I know well and know the car's history well. Otherwise, nope. in the same breath, would I buy a W123/4/6 with over 100,000 on the ODO? Absolutely!
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