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Hey all, first post here, and looking for advice.

I am looking at a 2012 Cayman S that has been nicely modified, but was also in an accident. Both the modifications and restoration post accident were done by what appears to be a reputable shop that specializes in exotic cars. I am told that the person in charge of the paint for the restoration is one of the few in the area certified by McLaren. The accident involved a street sweeper which was at fault, and whoever was responsible for the street sweepers insurance paid for the repair to the tune of $38,000, or so I am told. The car has about 45,000 miles on it and the asking price is in the mid $30K range.

The shop that did all of the work to the car: https://www.gmpcars.com/exotics/home

Photographic documentation of accident and repairs: https://photos.google.com/share/AF1QipONo3upJH_bR5fCGKjrnPJKXxPP97PSULu3IK-CEZ7PnS-YUs9ISyf93uiew25hyg?key=Unc4Vi1ZQTBXOHJaN1NJb1RDTkJoN1pBSTBUdnpn

Photographic documentation of mods: https://photos.google.com/share/AF1QipNc7SA6icg8ZH0mQd8FuYYJjbYCQIMkDFpyENPiUZ2Pimg-uHacYQZGYiKP7dhH-g?key=VmdNWmxYWDItRFFZQlRpMEhRU09RV1FNeFNJcVpn

List of Mods:https://photos.google.com/share/AF1QipNc7SA6icg8ZH0mQd8FuYYJjbYCQIMkDFpyENPiUZ2Pimg-uHacYQZGYiKP7dhH-g/photo/AF1QipOJVD2Uq2qxqIAWzLuinped0m_1phbsDf8XtB9O?key=VmdNWmxYWDItRFFZQlRpMEhRU09RV1FNeFNJcVpn
Suspension was replaced with Ohlins post accident. Tarrett drop links also added.

The seller claims there was no need for pulling on a frame straightening bench, and that the car does not have any issues post accident. Claims he is selling 4K miles after the accident to buy a GT4.

I do plan on calling the shop that did the work to ask about the car, as well as have a PPI done, but wanted to ask the forum what you all think as well. Would you buy a car that was in this kind of accident? Is the price fair given the extensive, and well done (I think) modifications? What further questions should I be asking?

Thank you in advance.
 

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Welcome to the forum!

Wow, that is one big scrape, just like a big can opener... personally I wouldn't, it will always be a repaired car, unless you keep it forever when you go to sell it the next buyer will need to be convinced just like you are working at now, convincing yourself that it is a good idea. :2cents:
 

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1st off, welcome to the forum.

There's a lot to unpack here. Since you're new to the forum, are you new to the Porsche world? If you are, then you should be made aware that selling a Porsche that has endured major accident damage is a tough sell. Porsche owners want clean histories with their cars. I bring this up because you'll have a hard time selling when that day comes. I'm sure you're saying to yourself that you plan to keep it "forever", so selling isn't a concern to you. Except 2 seater sports cars are lifestyle vehicles. Something in your life may suddenly change that makes this car not fit for you anymore - getting married, having kids, downsized from work, retiring to a smaller house, too old to get in / out, etc. That's why you see Boxsters and Caymans with lots of owners listed on their carfax. People buy them on a whim and find they don't fit their life anymore. You should always consider your future and how a 2 seater fits in it and how easy will it be to sell if something changes. Once again, this one will be a tough one to resell.

Which brings me to price. On a good day with no accident damage, that CS is probably worth $38-40K tops. Mods only add value if you already planned to add them. $3K off for the accident is not enough. Of course, $35 is probably his starting point and will certainly come down, but it's definitely not worth his asking price. And you're not going to have herd beating down his door to buy it so you have time to think about it.

Now lets look at the accident damage. The damage started at the front and worked to the back, rather than rear to front. Several tells for this:
(1) the damage on the mirror is on the front. If the damage occurred rear to front, the mirror would show damage in the glass area or been ripped off.
(2) the damage deepens from front to back until it reaches the rear tire. Damage lessens past the wheel. If the accident was rear to front, there would be more damage at the wheel and less in the qtr panel.
(3) the bumper cover hangs like it was ripped from front to back and the taillight isn't damaged.
There aren't any pics of the right rear wheel, but based on the alignment sheet, it looks like there might have been some damage to the RR wheel. And it appears the entire rear is shifted to the driver's side, which is odd since the the force of the accident should have pushed the left wheel inward.

So why focus on the damage and direction so closely? Because I'm calling BS on being hit by a street cleaner. In order to be hit from front to back, the cleaner would have been running in the wrong direction on the street. Most street cleaners I've seen have the driver on the right hand side so he can drive with the flow of traffic and see the curb. If they're cleaning into the flow of traffic, they become a traffic hazard and cities avoid those situations. If they were flowing in the direction of the traffic, no way they could cause the damage in those locations by suddenly seeing it and trying to avoid it. There would be more damage to the rear, not the side. And finally, with that much damage dollar wise, the city insurance agent would just scratch a check for the car and consider it totaled. It would have a salvage title (you don't mention the title condition).

So how did it get wrecked? Looking at the mods, my guess is at the track. It may have hit something with the right rear tire which caused it to spin and slam into a barrier on the left. The insurance situation makes sense too. Track ins pays and doesn't care what you do with the car. If you insure your car for $40K for a track event and have an accident, you pay the first $4K and they pay the next $36K. Owner may have taken that money and had the shop do the repairs. Total speculation on my part, but makes more sense than a street cleaner running into it.

Speaking of the repairs, it looks from the pics like the shop did a quality repair. But cameras have a tendency to make things look better than they are. I would be a bit suspicious of possible trans damage with the wheels being out of alignment like that. I'd check for leaks.

The bottom line is it's up to you whether you should buy this car. Only you know what your risk tolerance is. This one has a ton of risk associated with it. I could be off on where the accident occurred, but not on the direction of the damage (front to rear). I would ask for some documentation on the accident. There should be a police report if there was a street cleaner involved. If there isn't any documentation, then the seller might be fibbing and if he'll fib about that, what else will he fib about?

Good luck with your decision.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Wow, thanks for the extensive reply, lots of good insight there. I have followed the used Porsche market for a long time, but have not entered into ownership yet. Your pricing seems to be right in line with what I have seen. The modifications are extensive, and expensive, and do add some value for me. But perhaps not for its next owner... Many of the items installed are things I would love to have, but would never have paid for. My thoughts here were that I could get them on a used car at a steep discount compared to having them installed on a factory car, and be able to otherwise enjoy something I would not spring for.
GREAT eye on the damage front to back, I had not picked up on that. I will have to ask about a police report, I have not done that yet. I do not believe this happened at the track however. If you click on the first few photos in the gallery, they are actually short video clips. It shows the car at the side of a road, with sirens going nearby. This appears to be a road accident of some kind, whether it was a street cleaner or not I cannot say. The road surface looks damp and it appears to be raining.
Here is a quote from an email with the seller:
"involved in an unavoidable collision with a street sweeper veering into my lane, causing damage to the left front fender, the driver’s side door, the mirror, the rear quarter panel and taillight, and the rear bumper. In a complete restoration costing $38,956 paid for by the at-fault insurance company, the driver’s side door, the mirror, rear quarter panel, and rear bumper were replaced. The entire left side of the car, including the rear trunk and bumper, was repainted. The impact was largely absorbed by the wheels and the crumple zone panels. Since it is a unibody car, I cannot say there was no frame damage. What I can say, however, is that when the car was on the straightening bench, the measurements on both sides were identical and no straightening (“pulls”) was required. The pictures referenced below show a rail underneath running the length of the car; there was no evidence of damage to that rail. The most recent Carfax report lists the damage as “moderate”, noting that the air bags did not deploy. The restoration was done by GMP Collision of Novato, California, a shop specializing in exotic cars and certified to perform warranty and other repair work on McLaren’s. A copy of the invoice detailing the work involved in the restoration is available. I believe the restoration work is excellent."

Perhaps the cleaner was driving the opposite direction and the driver was distracted? Speculation of course... Have to see if I can get a police report. Thanks again for taking the time.
 

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Whatever hit that car literally chopped through the wheel spokes! Must have been going fast, or pinned the car to the curb?

Either way, let me put it to you this way: I paid way less than his asking for a 2011 Cayman S that was one owner, never wrecked, and in amazing condition. It just might be 'the car' but don't make an irrational decision because you think you'll never find a better example. You will if you're patient. If you do buy it, the price needs to come way down, and be prepared to have the same issue selling it if you ever decide to. If you can get a good deal, then you can at least beat on it at the track and not feel guilty!
 

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Yeah, they could have met driving on a street / road. That makes more sense since the street cleaner driver would have a harder time keeping track of his lane if he's driving a right hand vehicle on a street. And it would be a front to back accident. So that is more plausible. When you said a street cleaner hit it, I thought it was parked on the street and hit while the cleaner was cleaning.

What doesn't make sense is why they didn't total the car. Ins companies generally total a car when the damages are 75% or more of the value. This one would easily fall in that range. When they get to 75%, they figure there are enough unknowns that will pop up that will push it to 100%. The carfax goes to show you why you shouldn't put blind faith in them. That's easily 'moderate' damage. Caveat emptor when it comes to carfax.

IF you do pursue this one, have an over-rev report done since it's a manual trans.
 

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No. Too many unwrecked ones to choose from. It’s really hard to put a price on diminished value of any accident.
 

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I'll be listing this week my one-owner 2012 Cayman S, 33,00 miles, highly optioned, no accidents of ANY kind, full history of car from day 1...for a few grand more than the repaired wreck. You can do a lot better than that car.
 

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Hey all, first post here, and looking for advice.

I am looking at a 2012 Cayman S that has been nicely modified, but was also in an accident. Both the modifications and restoration post accident were done by what appears to be a reputable shop that specializes in exotic cars. I am told that the person in charge of the paint for the restoration is one of the few in the area certified by McLaren. The accident involved a street sweeper which was at fault, and whoever was responsible for the street sweepers insurance paid for the repair to the tune of $38,000, or so I am told. The car has about 45,000 miles on it and the asking price is in the mid $30K range.

The shop that did all of the work to the car: https://www.gmpcars.com/exotics/home

Photographic documentation of accident and repairs: https://photos.google.com/share/AF1QipONo3upJH_bR5fCGKjrnPJKXxPP97PSULu3IK-CEZ7PnS-YUs9ISyf93uiew25hyg?key=Unc4Vi1ZQTBXOHJaN1NJb1RDTkJoN1pBSTBUdnpn

Photographic documentation of mods: https://photos.google.com/share/AF1QipNc7SA6icg8ZH0mQd8FuYYJjbYCQIMkDFpyENPiUZ2Pimg-uHacYQZGYiKP7dhH-g?key=VmdNWmxYWDItRFFZQlRpMEhRU09RV1FNeFNJcVpn

List of Mods:https://photos.google.com/share/AF1QipNc7SA6icg8ZH0mQd8FuYYJjbYCQIMkDFpyENPiUZ2Pimg-uHacYQZGYiKP7dhH-g/photo/AF1QipOJVD2Uq2qxqIAWzLuinped0m_1phbsDf8XtB9O?key=VmdNWmxYWDItRFFZQlRpMEhRU09RV1FNeFNJcVpn
Suspension was replaced with Ohlins post accident. Tarrett drop links also added.

The seller claims there was no need for pulling on a frame straightening bench, and that the car does not have any issues post accident. Claims he is selling 4K miles after the accident to buy a GT4.

I do plan on calling the shop that did the work to ask about the car, as well as have a PPI done, but wanted to ask the forum what you all think as well. Would you buy a car that was in this kind of accident? Is the price fair given the extensive, and well done (I think) modifications? What further questions should I be asking?

Thank you in advance.
Not a chance in the world. Why would you purchase a trashed but repaired car for the same price or more than for a pristine car? To me, I would only purchase that car is it was $15K less and then only if I was desperate. It's not worth the risk.
MOO!
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Thanks for the responses so far. I assure you I am not desperate, and make no decisions in life hastily, especially a large purchase. I have spent the last 6 months or so researching, browsing for sale ads, and walking away from deals. Admittedly, I am picky. My ideal car would be either a Boxster S OR a Cayman S, Racing green with tan interior, manual, and well optioned, between 2009-2012. I have not found one. I would settle for a unique color other than green, but the interior, S model, and clutch pedal are musts. To those saying there are too many un-wrecked examples out there around the same price, I would tell you I have not found one that is not black, silver, or guards red. That is not to say I would prefer a wrecked car over a silver one, but I would take a wrecked one that was well and properly repaired with no ill side effects, IF that is even possible. That is why I come here, because I do not have experience with such things.
Another thing I would ask to those who have simply said no, did you take the time to look at some of the photo documentation of the repair? Is it possible it was done well to a point that the car is like new again? I honestly do not know which is why I ask. Would a PPI be able to determine any lingering issues?
And to those that say that there are many examples out there for a better price, did you see what all had been done to it? I realize that for the most part, mods do not significantly appreciate a used car. However, parts alone that have been added to this car total between 10-15K, conservatively (the Capristo valved exhaust is 5K on its own). Many of these are parts I would dream of adding to a car I hope to own someday, but would never spring for, as I am far to practical with money. I add "some" value to these items as I would get enjoyment out of having them on the car at a discounted rate. But lets be honest here, if you bought a $40,000 used sports car, and put more than half of that into it again in aftermarket parts and labor, I would bet you would try to get at least some of that back, and not simply sell it for whatever the rest of the factory optioned cars are going for.

I realize considering a car that was in an accident is not the most logical thing. But I come here to ask because
A. I have not found a unique color combo in the year range and with the features I need in the last 6 months
B. I do not know if it is or is not possible to bring a damaged car back to its original glory
C. I am hoping you all can give me an idea of what something like this should be worth, so after doing my do diligence, I have an idea what to offer, if it comes to that.

I just would hate to turn down a deal on a nice car that could POTENTIALLY be perfectly fine, for the price that most factory optioned cars go for, with lots of add-ons that I would enjoy, but miss out on by buying a factory original car. I would not meet the seller at his asking price of course. I hope all of this makes sense to you. I assure you I am simply trying to get reasoning for a "hell no" answer and not trying to talk myself into buying something that does not make sense. I want to know exactly why I am walking away if I end up doing so. If that reasoning ends up being high risk due to the impossibility of knowing whether the car is completely sorted, then so be it.
 

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Sorry I did not follow the details too much, just saw the damage pics. One questions for you - did the car need a frame repair? If yes - this is a sad, sad situation, because it is a beauty, ruby red metallic right? If the frame was untouched - I would take it, what a beast.
 

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You did ask for thoughts so that's what I've done. They are what I would do in this situation but I may tend to be a bit more cautious than some. You may look at differently.
With that said, the price you are quoted is in line with a non-damaged car. That just doesn't work for me. As someone else mentioned, selling it later will be very difficult & I'd expect you'd take a bath on it. The reality, in my eyes anyway, is that no matter how well it was rebuilt it's still been rebuilt. BTW, for a quick reference, I did a quick search and found a 2011 Cayman S 6speed at PCA for $32500.
YMMV
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Boski - The seller claims the frame did not require any pulling on a straightening bench. Had it required a frame repair I would not likely be pursuing.

MLCayman, I appreciate the thoughts. I would not consider offering the seller at his asking price due to the damage. What color is the Cayman you found at PCA? Link? I really do not want to settle for black or silver, or still damaged for that matter.
 

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The one on the PCA site is unfortunately black Basalt Black Metallic with a Stone Grey interior.
Here's the text description:
Super color combo. Really shows the Cayman curves. 6 speed manual, 3.4DFI, Bose sound, new Pilot Sport 4S tires, new shift cables and plugs. Headliner replaced. Clear bra and window tint, otherwise stock. Never tracked. No accidents, rust, or paint work. Fantastic southeast car. I'll probably regret this.
Mileage: 64,000
Exterior Color: Basalt Black Metallic
Interior Color: Stone Gray

Good luck with your search!
 

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My 981 Boxster S had been wrecked by the previous owner. I planned to daily drive and track it, so I was gonna depreciate the hell out of it anyway. It didn't bother me that it had earlier damage with good repair documentation. As long as the repair was good, it was good for what I was going to use it for. It wasn't going to be a museum piece.

I had a CPO-level PPI done at his cost by a local Porsche dealer. I got about $10-12K off on a direct purchase from the owner vs. a comparable CPO from a Porsche dealer. I paid $46K and Porsche dealers were were asking $58-60K for similarly-equipped/mileage CPO's.

So far, I've been happy with my purchase. I have put 34 track days and 45K DD miles on it - more smiles per mile.
 

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OP...it sounds like you are looking for support to go ahead with the purchase. While it may be a perfectly repaired car, there is risk that it isn't and issues will surface. Even if that's not the case, you'll have a very hard time selling this car down the road. If you plan to buy and hold it for a lot of years (7, 10?), that's less of an issue than if you buy and three years later want to sell.
 

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I looked a little more into it. I think this guy is trying to sell this car for a long time, I saw it a few months back. For the reasons mentioned above I am not surprised, as you can buy a non-damaged car for the same price. It is tempting, with the mods this car is worth north of 40k. On the other hand I am looking at the post-accident alignment and there is evidence of impact. You would have to talk with frame engineers - can the shown values compromise rigidity for example, because a common sense is that once metals undergo a plastic deformation its strength never comes back. It is important on track and during an accident.

Personally, I think I would pass! There would have to be an engineer to convince me otherwise, someone without a conflict of interest.
 

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Ive rebuilt a few totals with good success. They were cars that I built as keepers. Any car with that much repair work will take a big hit at selling time. That said, if you want a car with those exact mods and plan to keep it 100,000 miles, resale is not really a factor and it could be the car for you.
 

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Well you have read everyones opinion and mine isn't much different. First off I want to say I love the color combination it is beautiful! As to my story I was looking for a 981 CS several years back and ran into a CS in blue on black. Gorgeous car with all the right options. It had been on the market for several weeks which tweeked my concern. I contacted the sell and we met for a test drive. I was convinced I wanted the car and paid for a carfax and sure enough it had been in an accident. I called the seller and sure enough it had. This bothered me greatly since he had not been forthcoming when I test drove the car. Anyway, the car had been hit, supposedly at the Porsche dealer and it had taken out the rear quarter panel. The entire panel was replaced, painted, etc. (over $30K of work) All photos and paperwork was sent to me which I reviewed in detail. The seller started out at something in mid $60k. But as days passed he eventually lowered his asking to me to $55K. In the end I said no thanks for all the reasons that others have mentioned. About a year later I found a 2014 CS with less than 3500 miles on it for mid $60k. It had an original sticker of $95K and was CPOd. The Porsche you are looking at is indeed desirable but there are a lot of Porsche out there. Keep looking!
 

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Discussion Starter #20
Thanks all for the further input. I'm not ready to hang my hat up on it yet, though it may be off my head. I've got a call into the shop that did all the work, I am going to see what I can get out of them as far as whether they think the car was able to be made 100% whole again. I may also consult an independent alignment shop. If this all checks out, perhaps a lowball offer accepted would lead to me paying for a PPI. The seller has been very upfront about everything so far, which is encouraging. He also encourages a PPI. I live over a thousand miles away, so will ultimately be relying on the PPI heavily.
I do plan to keep whatever car I end up buying for a long time. The shortest period of time I have owned a car was about 8 years. Unless my life changes drastically, I can see keeping this car for a very long time and putting on lots of miles. So while resale is always relevant, it is not at the forefront of my concerns here. I just want to make sure the car drives and handles as it should.
 
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