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Car totalled in accident: Owner wants to get it salvaged & repaired

My cousin was lazy enough to neglect taking insurance. Now he wants to salvage the car, repair it and use it.

BHPian dsuman recently shared this with other enthusiasts.

The above pictures and my posts here and here shall give you a fair idea. The car is in a Vijayawada Police Station and the Police have cleared the vehicle to be taken away if required since there was no 3rd party involved.

Background: This is a Mahindra Quanto bought in May 2013. I used it for 8 years, 1,30,000 kms and sold it off to my cousin in September 2021. The car met with an accident on 31 March. My cousin and family are ok now. My cousin was lazy enough to neglect taking insurance. Now he wants to salvage the car, repair it and use it.

Since I am the go to person for automobiles in my family, my cousin reached out to me.

My suggestions and warnings:

  • The A Pillar and roof are damaged. Not advisable to restore it. Sell the working parts to a garage.
  • The shape cannot be restored to factory original. Hell we don't even know if the car will travel in straight line.
  • We don't know what problems the engine and related components will show.
  • Buy an old jeep body and put in the Quanto engine and gearbox and use it.
  • Convert the Quanto to open top and use it just like a Jeep.

His rational is:

  • Its his first car.
  • He lost his mother in that car so he wants to keep it as a memory.
  • His family will never allow him to buy any other car in his lifetime but he understands the importance of carrying his family in a 4 wheeler than multiple 2 wheelers.
  • He treats the Quanto with extreme respect. He still believes and says "It was the Quanto which saved his family from death. If it had not been a high vehicle, all of them would have perished". If I had not sold him my Quanto he would have bought a Swift for which he had paid an advance and cancelled.
  • He is a farmer and wants to at least use the car for carrying farm produce etc. He also owns a Tent House Supply Business so it can be put to use there as well.

I have told him it will be best we leave the car to rest In peace but he wants to bring it back to life.

So guys what are the possibilities assuming he will use it on rural roads and in his farmlands/Tent House Supplies.

Also the car is still on my name so once the car is restored can it be registered on my cousin's name albeit with modifications. I was contemplating canceling registration but now its a new dilemma for me.

Here's what BHPian Maverick5490 had to say on the matter:

Rather than a memory, it will be a grim reminder of what happened. The damage is way too much and not worth bringing the vehicle back to life.

Here's what BHPian IshaanIan had to say on the matter:

I am sorry but having read about the accident from all your posts and your statement about him not even taking insurance, I feel that your cousin should ideally be banned from driving itself. Sounds like an extremely careless and negligent person from whatever I have read. Or atleast someone who does not fully appreciate what it means to drive a vehicle, share the road appropriately with other users and transport people responsibly. I mean is it not criminal to be roaming around without insurance?


As for restoring the Quanto, it looks to be impossible from the photos but you will be surprised what a good independent garage can do so perhaps if one is hell-bent on using it, take it to the most reputed independent garage in your part of the country and have them sort it out.

Here's what BHPian anjan_c2007 had to say on the matter:

Since you are based in Vijaywada there should be a Mahindra dealer there. Dealers have a good networking with other dealers for the same company especially in the vicinity. You can show photographs of the Quanto to the dealer and talk to him about resurrecting the machine. If he says it will be OK and if the budget suits your cousin the Quanto can be shifted to the Mahindra dealer's premises. He can be requested to source spares either from his dealership or from neighbouring dealers possibly including Chennai (where there are better chances to procure body panels and other spares). There could be a chance that a full spare body is also available though in some repairable condition. The Quanto can be surely brought back to life and since your cousin is too attached to it, let him explore all options.

Here's what BHPian ajmat had to say on the matter:

Don't even go there! Whatever emerges will be unsafe and cost far more money.

Whatever you spend as a memory would be better spent in a charitable gesture in the name of your cousins mother - sponsoring a child or renovating a school. Those have perpetuity, the rebuilt Quanto might be dead on arrival.

Here's what BHPian ninjatalli had to say on the matter:

9 year old vehicle with nearly 150,000 kms on the odometer. In a huge accident that was heavily and structurally damaged. With family member(s) brutally hit & lost in that accident. With a driver who oversped, didn't renew his insurance, didn't get his passengers to follow rules and wear seat belts.


That is a recipe for disaster. I have no idea on the financial hit your cousin is going to take to get this car back to a running state but he would probably get a used Quanto with an additional lakh thrown in over the repair cost (or a decent similar sized used car/van). Given his requirements are basic (/Farm work related), several other vehicles will suit his requirements. Please give him the right advice and do not let him put his and his family members again in trouble. As far as I can see, you rightfully can lead him on making safer decisions than just answering his immediate automobile queries.

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