Current-model Vehicles - the Chinese Toasters of today.

Submitted: Wednesday, May 11, 2016 at 14:50
ThreadID: 132376 Views:4113 Replies:4 FollowUps:11
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If ever there was an indication that todays vehicles are rapidly approaching "throwaway toaster" level, then this would have to be it.

Here's a Prado in a salvage auction with a bit of RH frontal suspension and panel damage - that would normally appear to be quite repairable to me.
The impact hasn't even been enough to set off the airbags - yet the vehicle has been classed as a Statutory Writeoff - that means totally unrepairable, and for scrapping only.

Written off Prado

This is a just-over-3 yr old vehicle, with 49,000 kms on the clock - and I think this is pretty disgusting for a brand that has a reputation for quality and long life of its products.

Perhaps there's some major body impact that has seriously impacted the cabin and made it too costly to repair - but with one of these things still valued at around $40,000 with those kms, I struggle to see what kind of damage would make it a total writeoff.

Cheers, Ron.
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Reply By: Member - Boobook - Wednesday, May 11, 2016 at 15:16

Wednesday, May 11, 2016 at 15:16
In the good ol days Ron, there would be little or no structural damage to the vehicle.

But the owner and all occupants would all have their head and spine smashed in.

Something has to give when there is a collision. I would rather current vehicle design where the car is designed to be sacrificed for the people inside than the old days where the toaster was preserved and the toast inside was toast!!

Pity though.
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Follow Up By: Member - Scott M (NSW) - Wednesday, May 11, 2016 at 19:12

Wednesday, May 11, 2016 at 19:12
Funny, I say that about my 40 series. One of these days I'm going to run into a tree, they'll wind up hosing me out of interior and driving the old girl away.

However for anything less than that, Roo strike etc. it's not the 40 that will cop it.
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Follow Up By: Member - Boobook - Thursday, May 12, 2016 at 07:28

Thursday, May 12, 2016 at 07:28

That is chinese for something like "Don't even think about it, and I take it back for you"

Kind of like 'that won't happen - touch wood'.

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Reply By: LAZYLUX16 - Wednesday, May 11, 2016 at 15:17

Wednesday, May 11, 2016 at 15:17
Bit wierd airbags didnt deplore ..Wonder if front end bent or chassis..?
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Follow Up By: Notso - Wednesday, May 11, 2016 at 16:46

Wednesday, May 11, 2016 at 16:46
Deplorable that they didn't deploy EH
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Follow Up By: Member - Boobook - Wednesday, May 11, 2016 at 17:01

Wednesday, May 11, 2016 at 17:01
Airbag deployment

Since the late 1990s, the effort has been to reduce the instances of airbag deployment, not increase them. The reason is airbags -- while they can save your life in a head-on crash -- can just as easily kill or injure you if they deploy under other circumstances.

While noting that serious airbag injuries are rare, NHTSA says they can happen.

"Serious or even fatal injuries can occur when someone is very close to, or in direct contact with an air bag module when the air bag deploys," NHTSA said.

With recent emphasis on preventing potential airbag injuries, and with onboard computers deciding to deploy or not to deploy, its perhaps not surprising that airbags don't deploy in every collision, even in ones where occupants think they should have.
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Reply By: Member - TonyV - Wednesday, May 11, 2016 at 17:55

Wednesday, May 11, 2016 at 17:55
Going on Redbook to see what the thing is worth.

New 2012 - $55,990 I suspect that its a fleet commercial purchase so no GST at the time and was brought at a lower retail price.

Private sale now $34-38k

Trade in $29-32k

If the repair is more than 60% of the lowest price it deemed not repairable.
Its worth more as parts.

I suspect a side impact and a bent chassis rail, possible front diff issue and the engine may have moved. But that's just a guess

Throw away ? Just about. :)
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Follow Up By: Ron N - Wednesday, May 11, 2016 at 22:24

Wednesday, May 11, 2016 at 22:24
I'm not sure about the figures you were looking at - it's an 11/2012 GX diesel sports auto Prado - which Redbook says was $58,490 MSRP.

The Manufactuer Suggested Retail Price for a vehicle excludes additional costs, such as options, dealer delivery, stamp duty, and other government charges, that may apply.

It's got a factory towbar and alloy roobar, and I reckon that rig would have been pushing well over $63,000 when it was driven out of the showroom, once the accessories, dealer delivery, stamp duty and rego was added.
They might have got a "previous-year-build deal" - but I doubt it - because Prados virtually have a waiting list. They certainly don't sit on lots waiting to be sold, like Chinese or French cars.

Redbook says the kms are now 60,000 to 100,000 on average - this one is well below average at 49,000kms. The private sale pricing is estimated at $40,200 to $36,400 - and this one, before the prang, would have brought top money, because it's very low kms and otherwise unmarked.

The only thing that I could imagine would make it unrepairable would be a major impact to the cabin.
However, the RHF wheel is still in place, only the tyre is flat - so the wheel hasn't impacted the cabin - nor, I would imagine, it has run over anything that would have damaged the cabin, or the damage would be visible in the drivers floor.

It's a bit of a pity I didn't see the auction ad until it was too late to inspect. However, if it wasn't sold today, it may still be there, and I might get a chance to take a look at it, just to see what it was that was deemed to make it unrepairable.

I did see a Citroen Berlingo van last year, as I was walking through the salvage yard - and I couldn't see much wrong with it - but it was also scrap.

I stopped to take a closer look and saw where it had taken a mild shunt up the rear - and the whack had rippled and crumpled the entire rear floor!

However, that's the sort of thing one expects from French crap, not the presumably better-built Toyota 4WD's.

Cheers, Ron.
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Follow Up By: Member - TonyV - Wednesday, May 11, 2016 at 23:12

Wednesday, May 11, 2016 at 23:12

I gave the manual not auto price for 2012, bar and tow hitch are giveaways on many Toyotas. If as I suspect it's a commercial/fleet car, less GST and fleet discount the purchase price would be many thousands less than the $58,490 MSRP, or $63k estimate.

We should be looking at trade in prices as insurance either auction or wholesale, they never retail vehicles.

As I said I can only guess what the real damage is, but obviously it is decided to be either uneconomic to repair or structurally unsound.

Hope you get a chance to have a look at it.
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Reply By: Malcom M - Thursday, May 12, 2016 at 07:25

Thursday, May 12, 2016 at 07:25
I would think that the chassis is now bent at that point which is a real pain to straighten.
If you don't get it right then the suspension / steering will always be wrong.

Its all about repair cost versus recovered dollars from the wreck sale. Would think they'd get quite a bit back from the wreck. Over $10K for the motor aloneif it is a diesel.
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Follow Up By: Ron N - Thursday, May 12, 2016 at 10:15

Thursday, May 12, 2016 at 10:15
Malcolm, I was under the impression that if a vehicle is repairable in any way, it will be sold with a "Repairable Write Off" description. This used to be a common description in the salvage sales.

I bought an Isuzu truck as salvage from Pickles in early 2015 that was an RWO - and I repaired it.
It passed over the inspection pit with no problem, and it's now registered and fully operational (it had moderate frontal damage).

AFAIK, when a vehicle is sold with a "Statutory Writeoff", it is because the damage is so severe, that it cannot be repaired to an acceptable safe standard - not because it's uneconomic to repair.

I did find out that NSW has a modified law (since 2011) that prevents any seriously damaged vehicle from being repaired, unless it falls into a few narrow categories.

I do know that the authorities are hot on any individual buying wrecked high-value vehicles - or showing intentions to repair them - to try and eliminate re-birthing of stolen vehicles, and to try and prevent backyard repairs with sub-standard components.

Cheers, Ron.
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Follow Up By: Malcom M - Thursday, May 12, 2016 at 10:35

Thursday, May 12, 2016 at 10:35
A bent chassis is a stat writeoff in Oz but it wasn't so long ago that you would take the body shell off, put the chassis in a jig and pull it straight again. Typical tolerance of +- 1mm.
Guess there are just too many shonky repairers who put stuffed cars back on the road.

I've had chassis straightened overseas. Done properly its fine but Oz now works to Lowest common denominator thinking. Not sure if thats a good thing or not.
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Follow Up By: Member - Boobook - Thursday, May 12, 2016 at 10:37

Thursday, May 12, 2016 at 10:37
There are specific rules about what makes a statutory write off

Even fress water inside the car above the sills!!

And this guide
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Follow Up By: GREG T11 - Thursday, May 12, 2016 at 21:34

Thursday, May 12, 2016 at 21:34
Is it just me or does the door look out of whack in the rear 3/4 shot ? Below the belt line.
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Follow Up By: Ron N - Thursday, May 12, 2016 at 21:57

Thursday, May 12, 2016 at 21:57
Greg, I can't see any door out of whack anywhere. Even the join line between the plastic bumper and the mudguard, on the LHS (usually the first thing to be disrupted in any bingle), is intact.

However, further close examination shows that the drivers side floor pan may have a ripple in it.
The floor mat under the pedals isn't sitting flat, but perhaps this is a normal part of the design - I'm not familiar enough with the Prado to know whether it is or not.

I do know that in the Kluger, the LH wheel well intrudes into the passengers left foot rest area, and this is a right PIA in the design, and it stops me from even considering buying, or even renting a Kluger, as I once did.

Cheers, Ron.
FollowupID: 869256

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