Repair Collision Damage or Junk it?

mxyplxFebruary 13, 2010

Well our pristine lemonzine got wrecked Thursday. Damage mostly underneath and the rear quarter panel. 1995 Crown Vic LX. 79,763 miles. Naturally the cost of repairs exceeds its value. Prior to the wreck the car was between 'good" and "excellent" condition judging by the questions on the Kelly Blue Book site. So let's say it would have been worth $2500. Conventional off-the-cuff wisdom says junk it and buy sumthin else. Maybe.

Here's my analysis based on approximate reasonable estimates:

Insurance company pays me 2500

I buy it back for salvage for 500

Have it repaired for 6000

Rebuild rear brakes for 500 They were scheduled for next month.

Re-smog, re-license re-register etc for 500

Total outlay $7500



We again have a good to excellent low mileage car. (For us - we can neglect the fact of the wreck)

It still looks like a modern car - good lines etc.

If cruising at 75 and you need 95 it's there right now.

Big V8 climbs our mountains like they were hills.

It's 15 years old - the yearly licence and fees are negligable.

It's got 2 electric seats - very important to us.

It will get driven maybe 2000 miles per year - half highway.

We are 77. Probly never get another car.

My wife's memory is going; learning another car would be tough. Real tough.

Gotta decide by Monday they tell me. Could we possibly buy an equivalent car for $7500?

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"Damage mostly underneath" is not enough info, especially for $6,000. As to whether you could buy a replacement, probably, depending on where you are. I see several online in various places:

    Bookmark   February 14, 2010 at 10:33AM
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Junk it. You don't have the only low mile crown vic in the world.

    Bookmark   February 14, 2010 at 2:55PM
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If your wife's memory is failing and can not learn to drive another vehicle, its time she quit driving, so you can eliminate that element from your equation. However, I think there are newer cars out there that are no more difficult to drive than the old Crown Vic. Maybe you can pick up another used Crown Vic.

    Bookmark   February 14, 2010 at 4:06PM
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Well I sold off that damned old junker. The drivers side sun visor clip was broken and the right headlight needed adjusting anyway. My wife drives only with supervision so she doesn't get lost.

Based on a previous posters comment and the fact the car only gets drove about 2000 miles/year now I am going to try going with just my P/U around town and for trips rent a car. I roughed out from 3 rent-a-car websites that 2 trips to Sacramento and one to the coast each year would cost about $1000 per year. Why buy a $10,000 car that mostly sits? Can always buy another heap later.

I could put $10,000 into a BAB @ about 5+% and get about 1/2 of that $1000 back each year.

    Bookmark   February 16, 2010 at 1:55PM
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