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Thread: Rust/Corrosion Indicated On Auction Sheet

  1. #1

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    Default Rust/Corrosion Indicated On Auction Sheet

    As most of you know I am in the process on buying another JDM. My question is, has anybody purchased a car from auction that stated rust and corrosion on the undercarriage? If so, do you regret buying it? Was it worse then expected?

    I have been told that some auction houses are real fussy with there auction sheets and some are not. With that being said one would think rust/corrosion could be as little as surface rust on exhaust system or maybe as severe as a hole in the floor. How does one know if its a red or green light to take a chance and bid on a car?

    Unfortunately there is never any pictures of the underside of the car to go by.

    Any insight would be much appreciated.

    Note** Car is at USS Tokyo but was previously at Sapporo (Northern Japan)
    2017 Civic Type R FK8 R-01546
    1996 Honda Integra XI J Series Swap ITR Clone

  2. #2

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    It depends on a few things.

    Auction House – yes some are more fussy than others, it is the auction houses that are not fussy you have to avoid.
    How it is written on sheet – most vehicles of age will have under body rust and it will be mentioned on the sheet as underbody rust if it is one of the better auction houses but in general it is nothing to be concerned about but as I say, it depends on a few things. If it has corrosion mentioned, then “my” alarm bell starts to ring no matter what.
    If it mentions rust and painted then my alarm bell goes off even more and I tread carefully depending on the make/model even if it is at one of the better auction houses.
    Make/Model – some vehicles are affected more than others with rust and the key is knowing which make models are and where the common affected areas are on them.
    Your Agent – probably the main key to it all, he/she should be able to guide you if they know what they are doing and not dependent on getting their agents fee too much. Some agents will talk things down so you bid and some will not.
    USS Auctions – some USS auctions (including USS Tokyo) have an inspection/photo service where your agent can request for an inspector to check and photograph certain things on a vehicle for you. I use this a lot with vehicles like R33 GTR Skylines to make sure the front strut towers are not rusting. However, the service is not free so a lot of agents will not mention this to their customer/s but saying this, some agents use this service also to make out they have staff at the auction/s checking in person when really they don’t. I do not know how many times I have seen agents say they have staff at all auctions……… really…… over 130 different auctions per week spread across Japan and you have staff at each of them in the hope they may secure a vehicle.

    My opinion.

    If the vehicle is at USS Sapporo then you tread carefully, if it has any mention of rust then unless you have big b&lls I would leave it. Even when I am buying for stock where I have the ability to resell the vehicle here back at auction if it is a rust bucket, I myself will not buy from there and normally advise my customers the same. Maybe I miss the odd good one but when I am spending other people’s money (buying the vehicle out of auction for them), I would rather miss the odd good one rather than the customer crying after the vehicle has been delivered to my yard and inspected. If it has to go back to auction the customer is set to lose $$ based on transport costs, auction costs (buy & sell) and the hope of it selling close to what it sold for prior. If a vehicle sells at USS Sapporo and then turns up at another auction house a week or two later, nine times out of ten it will not sell for the same amount……everyone is scared of it now plus the good agents that know the system know what is going on.
    Out of 100 vehicles I buy, on average 5 have to go back to auction and normally this is because the customer/s do not take my advice when I advise them not to bid on the vehicle. Normally prior to auction their comment is “it looks good in the auction photos”……my answer to this is “they all look good in the auction photos”.
    If it is a super rare vehicle or you have a bank manager as a wife/husband then you may take the risk, I will not when it is not my money.

    Any way, just my 2 cents.

  3. #3

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    Thank you Mark for all of the information, it defiantly breaks it down and makes it easier to understand how everything works. I appreciate your explanation.

    I ended up passing on that particular car I mentioned above, there were to many red flags. That same car is still up at auction and unsold.
    It is a 2001 SZ-R Supra with 97K if you were wondering which vehicle.
    2017 Civic Type R FK8 R-01546
    1996 Honda Integra XI J Series Swap ITR Clone

  4. #4

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    What grade is the car

  5. #5

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    I just want to point out even high grade cars can have significant rust that would cost a fortune to fix and or make it impossible to pass inspection.
    I would only bid if I was confident and verified the rust was minor and cosmetic on the underbody and was not eating away at the body or panels.

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