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Discussion Starter #1
Hope you all can offer me some advise on a car I will look at tomorrow.

1981 308GTSI with 66,000 miles Red/Tan.

It is being sold by a local dealer who told me that he bought it at an auction(which worry's me a bit!)

The carfax shows it was a one owner car and never in an accident.

I saw photos and it looks immaculate inside and out.

Service records show that timing belt was done 10,000 miles ago.

A mechanic who repairs exotic cars (NOT a Ferrari Dealer or workshop) told me that the car seems perfect.

Finally, asking price of $29,000.

What are your opinions? Seems like a great car for a great price, but since this will be my first, I am hesitating to take the plunge!

Any advice or comments will be much appreciated!

Thanks

Frank
 

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Hope you all can offer me some advise on a car I will look at tomorrow.

1981 308GTSI with 66,000 miles Red/Tan.

It is being sold by a local dealer who told me that he bought it at an auction(which worry's me a bit!)

The carfax shows it was a one owner car and never in an accident.

I saw photos and it looks immaculate inside and out.

Service records show that timing belt was done 10,000 miles ago.

A mechanic who repairs exotic cars (NOT a Ferrari Dealer or workshop) told me that the car seems perfect.

Finally, asking price of $29,000.

What are your opinions? Seems like a great car for a great price, but since this will be my first, I am hesitating to take the plunge!

Any advice or comments will be much appreciated!

Thanks

Frank
Well first off have a PPI done on the car. It is the current condition that means the most on the car. The price is very nice:) Do you have any pictures of the car? So basically make sure a Ferrari mechanic takes a look at it. Well since I am more than inexperienced on the art of purchasing a Ferrari;) I would wait for everyone else's opinions.

Chris
 

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Hi Frank

Chris is barking up the right tree

Make sure the mechanic performing the PPI is un-incumbered by loyalties. They should be your mechanic, acting on your behalf, insuring your best interests and nobody else. While being a Ferrari mechanic with experience on this model is certainly best, I don't think its a requirement. Do your research, be aware of the limitations and weaknesses of the model and year your considering. Make sure the mechanic addresses each of them in addition to his opinion of the rest of the car.

Check out the Buyers Guides here in our members library for a great start

Good luck
Lane
 

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Discussion Starter #4
OK, I need some advise now and fast!! I am ready to buy the car, but I want to run this by you all.

I saw the car today, and it is in immaculate condition, inside and out.

The service records show a one owner car, BUT, the car last had a major service 10 years ago. In that 10 years, the car was driven only 15,000 miles, but the time frame bothers me. Am I right about this?

The dealers mechanic told me that the car is in perfect condition, and added that he took off the timing belt cover, and that the timing belt "looks new".

The nearest Ferrari dealer is 50 miles away from the car, and the seller tells me that it is too far to go to for an inspection. He added that I am free to bring my own mechanic (which I don't have available to travel) to inspect the car at the dealer/sellers showroom.

What do you all think??

Thanks!

Frank
 

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Frank, the belt sure will look new, but it is too old, so is the rest of the car. 10 years without a major service is too much, no matter the mileage.

If I were you, I'd never take it without a PPI. This car seems to be a bomb ready to explode in your hands.....
 

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I'm not sure I would characterize it as a bomb but rather a level of unknown. regarding the last major service...worst case...get it done yourself and include the cost in your "I'm willing to spend X on a 308" column.

I'm more concerned that "50 miles" is to much. Thats just silly. It makes me think he's trying to hide something. A little "I've got another guy I promised it too...it won't be here long" treatment. Call the Ferrari dealer and see if they can make the trip or send a trailer. If not, find a good independant willing to go there. The PPI remains your best defense against a lemon. forgoing that is your risk. Is it worth it?

Maybe I asked already...where are you?

If the car is mechanically as good as you think it is, I would hate to lose it because of a trust issue. Then again, lemons suck.

Lane
 

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Don't jump into anything without research and exercising options. Do some intel first before heading into the hot zone. Took me about 2 months of shopping around for my first one. Hell, it took longer for me to find my first ferrari than my wife :D

Oh, one more thing, the dealership can wait, if they are in such a rush to sell, buyer beware.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Thank you all fellas! I think that I will pass on this one, although I almost jumped on it!

I agree with all of your thoughts on the 10 year service gap, and I told the dealer that if he paid for a major service at a Ferrari Service Center I would buy the car---he refused. I don't think so much that he is trying to screw me, just that he dosn't know much about Ferrari's, or maybe he paid too much for the car to make a profit . Oh well...

For the future, how do I go about getting a PPI done??

Saint, I live just outside of New York City. By the way...the seller called me an hour ago to tell me that he had another guy coming to look at the car on Friday!
 

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Plenty of qualified guys near you for a PPI. Miller is just one source.

CT, NJ, or upstate?
If he bought it at auction...probably Manhiem PA...way more than 50 miles
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Saint,

I am close to Miller Motorcars and Wide World of Cars in Spring Valley, NY.

PPI...I think it stands for "pre-purchase inspection"...how do you arrange this service? Does this mean that the car is driven to a Ferrari dealer only, and left there for inspection? If so, what is the average fee for this?

After this experience, I am now leaning towards buying a car from a Ferrari dealer only...even if I wind-up paying more for the car, since at least I will know what I am buying. Am I off base with this?

Guy's, your imput is greatly appreciated.
 

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There are plenty of good independents along with the official dealers in your general area.

In terms of the PPI, if at an official dealer you will need to take the car there. Many independents will travel to see the car and then take it to a local garage to put it up on a lift.

RPM is not to far and they normally have some excellent cars:
http://www.rpmvt.com/ForSaleAll.html
 

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I addition....Miller has an enclosed car carrier used for pickup and delivery. They might pick the car up, do the PPI, and return it? Also see Frank Maderi in New Milford CT, an indipendant with a good reputation. Generally speaking a PPI cost between 3 and 5 hundred with an occasional 700. It is a detailed inspection of the internal and external features of the car. The more expensive ones will include leak down testing of each cylinder to verify valve seating/piston ring condition.

I'm not sure the one you were looking at was a "walk away". You did have some evidence that it was in good shape. Questioning that evidence is healthy. Perhaps some money back guarrantee if the inspection fails after purchase??

Lane
 

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Frank, how far are you from Deer Park? There is a dealer there, Cannillo Motorsports, that has a good reputation.

I don't know him and have never dealt with him, but I have heard of good experiences. His web site states that he is a real 308 fan, and his past inventory shows that he has sold quite a few 3X8s and Mondials. His 308 prices also tend to be close to 30k.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Tony,

I am close to Deer Park and I have been in touch with Michael Cannillo several times. He is a very nice guy and a straight shooter as well. he is looking for a car for me as well. Matter fact, he had one coming in that was what I was looking for but he sent it back because he didn't like the way 2nd gear felt. He took it off his web site, so I definetly have trust in him.

I called the dealer today and told him that I was passing on the car...he seemed a bit pissed, and didn't seem to get the major service issue. He kept saying that "this car was serviced only 15,000 miles ago", so I told him that if he paid for a major service I would write him a check right then. Oh well, I'll keep looking.

How do I find andarrange for a PPI with someone in my area?? I live outside of New York City.

Thanks
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Jazzy,

I agree. I don't think that he was up to no good, just that he dosn't know any better. I did tell him that the service will be an issue with the next buyer too...unless he dosn't know any better either.
 
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