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Old 08-28-2010, 03:59 PM   #1
Ryanz
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How much is my 2003 Ford Focus worth?

Ok so I'm in the market for a new car, and I want to trade in my 2003 Ford Focus ZX3. I took it to carmax and they quoted me $750....wayyyyyy short of what I was expecting. But maybe I'm the one who thinks his car is worth more than it actually is. So I need your help. Let me give you some specifics

Yellow 2003 Ford Focus ZX3
  • 160,000 miles
  • Has the all-too-common transmission problem which makes it shift stangely
  • Exterior is in good condition...very few dings
  • interior has a few stains on the front seats, and none in the back
  • driver side window won't stay up (I have cardboard stuck in there to keep it up)
  • Low profile tires and it has actual rims...not caps

Things I've put into the car:
  • Installed MP3 stereo
  • New ceramic brake pads
  • Shocks and struts all have been replaced
  • Replaced the motor mounts

I dunno...I was expecting $1.5k at least for my car...so when he showed me $750 I was kinda shocked. I mean...I pay $400 just to get my tires changed. Am I being unreasonable? Is $750 a good trade in for the amount of miles + the transmission problem my car has? Can I try and find a new transmission at a junk yard and get more money out of my car by replacing the broken one? I need all the help I can get here...and I'll be happy to answer any additional questions. Thanks in advance.


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Old 08-28-2010, 04:14 PM   #2
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Carmax low balls people because they need to make a profit off everything they sell. The rule of thumb is that Carmax will give you for your car half of what you can get if you sell it it privately.

So yeah, $1.5k is about right. Screw Carmax.
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Old 08-28-2010, 04:31 PM   #3
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it all depends on the person or dealership. you have almost twice the miles i had when i traded my focus in, but i'd say mine was in worse shape. the front bumper was bent in from hitting a ditch and bent the radiator support almost back against the engine, the rear bumper was banged up from where a friend rear ended me and i decided to not screw him over, scratches all over the rest of the body. the clutch was "slipping" so bad that it couldnt be even be launched at 50% throttle or shifted hard into second, it was leaking coolant from the motor to where it was empty in less than 2 days. the interior had cigarette burns and stains on the carpet and a messed up drivers door............

the dealer still gave me $2000 on the trade-in. when i checked KBB for a trade in value before i took it there, it wouldnt even give a value since it was in such bad shape and would need to be looked at. so in short.............carfax is screwing you, and not the good way either
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Old 08-28-2010, 04:34 PM   #4
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813$ is trade in value on KBB (kelly blue book) since your car has a couple defects (transmission, window, etc) I listed it as fair condition also since you said it had a couple small dings. i listed it as a manual cause im not sure which one you have.

also i listed it with 160K miles and with the stock equipment (all that they can count for) and here is the result.

http://www.kbb.com/used-cars/ford/fo...mileage=160000

i would say fix the window, and the tranny and you can get the 1.5K you wanted out of it.
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Old 08-28-2010, 04:37 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by xecutionr View Post
813$ is trade in value on KBB (kelly blue book) since your car has a couple defects (transmission, window, etc) I listed it as fair condition also since you said it had a couple small dings. i listed it as a manual cause im not sure which one you have.

also i listed it with 160K miles and with the stock equipment (all that they can count for) and here is the result.

http://www.kbb.com/used-cars/ford/fo...mileage=160000

i would say fix the window, and the tranny and you can get the 1.5K you wanted out of it.
well, if you push the dealership for a halfway reasonable price, they will work with you. like i said.........i wasnt even given a price by KBB for my last focus and they gave me 2 grand for it. they offered $1500, but i told them i wouldnt do it unless they gave me 2 grand.......and they did.

so OP i'd say you should at least get 1,500 if you traded in
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Old 08-28-2010, 04:42 PM   #6
Ryanz
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Carmax had the best price for the car I was looking for. $13,999 for a Orange Honda Fit Sport with 20k miles on it. All the dealerships I've looked at have it for about $1000 more.
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Old 08-28-2010, 05:46 PM   #7
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Private party is better for more money. If you want to sell it fast and easy, go to Carmax, but don't expect much for it (like you saw)
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Old 08-28-2010, 06:09 PM   #8
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EGZ is correct.

I'm not much of a mechanic as everyone prolly knows, but I did sell cars for awhile. With the slump in the new car sales division for most makes they are really pushing used or pre-owned vehicles for the sales team to move. You can expect that if they offer you $750 then they will fix the defects and mark up the car you sold them for $750 for approx $3500, even with the 160k on the odo, give or take. Don't settle for less than $1500, if you will fix up the "defects", i.e. window and clean up the stains as best as possible, and like EGZ said a private sell should net you that much give or take.

also, if selling as a private seller be sure to list the upgrades/replaced parts you've done like you did in the post... good luck!
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