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Thinking of purchasing a 2008 MKZ-what should I know?

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Greetings-I am considering going to check out a 2008 MKZ that recently was put up for sale in my neighborhood. Here is what I know about the car:


-It was in a minor accident that damaged front bumper cover, driver's side fender, and hood. Not sure about non cosmetic damage but owner says car still runs/drives perfectly.

-160k miles

-New tires

-New rear brakes

-Fresh oil change

-Claims that car leaks nothing

-No warning lights on dash

-Claims all options work correctly

-Asking $2100


I know that this car, like most other modern cars, is going to have certain things that are a pain in the ass, things that are expensive to fix, etc...... but I honestly have no knowledge of cars like this (I've driven Dodge minivans for years) and am hoping that people who do have knowledge can help me out.


Given the info available does this car seem like a good deal?

What should I ask?

What should I look for?

Is this likely to be a money pit?









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Hi ckm and welcome to the Lincoln MKZ Forum. Take the car to a mechanic/tech you trust and have them give it a good used car inspection for everything, including stored DTC codes. And additionally in this case, especially for hidden damage from that accident.


Look up the book value on KBB.com, NADA.com, Edmunds.com to get a general idea of the true value, in the condition it is in. Accident, rear quarter panel damage/rust, clearcoat paint delamination, whatever else is not right/inoperable, broken etc. etc.


Give it a long test drive. Check all fluids for leaks, color, smell, etc.


Check the engine compartment, underneath, rear differential/PTU etc. for leaks (if AWD). If the engine compartment and underneath the vehicle looks recently/unusually clean, you should assume it has leaks and the owner had it cleaned to hide them. Since it is  in your neighborhood, check the ground in the area where the car is normally parked too. Leaks on the ground? Leaks in the car.


Check the operation of the brakes, transmission, steering components, etc.


Take a look through the Owners Manual to acquaint yourself with the features and accessories and how they work.  Download the Owners Manual here: https://www.fleet.ford.com/parts-service/resources/owner-manuals/


What condition are the tires in? if they are worn and need replacing soon, that is a $800-$1,000 bill on top of your purchase price.


Check all features, headlights, tail lights, wipers, turn signals, accessories, components (Climate Control, Audio system, etc. etc.etc., to be sure they operate correctly. Is that left front headlight unit broken? If yes, they are expensive to replace and difficult to find.


That is all for starters. I am sure others will have their own suggestions too.


Feel free to ask any questions you may have, let us know how you make out and good luck.

Edited by bbf2530

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bbf2530 has provided a good overview for you to follow.  It's difficult to put a value on this car in light of the damage and mileage.  You also haven't provided details in the way of options, e.g. moonroof, upgraded audio, navigation, AWD, etc.  According to NADA, at this mileage and in rough condition, trade-in value is $1300.  They don't give a value for rough retail. Again options are unknown, so that  couldn't be figured into the price.


If you buy the car, are you planning to repair the accident damage?  If so, the cost of the collision repair at a body shop could exceed the value of the car.  Also, is that rust over the right rear wheel or a reflection of something?  Same for the left rear quarter.  Is that a reflection or scrapes/dents?


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Just a rough guess, but you're looking at around $3k at a body shop to fix that damage. So unless you can fix it yourself, you should be planning to drive as is. But if you're looking for cheap transportation, and the car checks out mechanically, you could always offer him a little less and you probably get some good use out of it. 

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