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What would you do, if, at the time of purchase the car has 25 miles on it? I started wondering where you would draw the line with the dealer. I suspect many of us would be pissed off but still purchase the car. How many miles should be expected to be on a new car? It seems like on a car like this, ( in the wrong hands), serious damage could occur if it was say heavily romped on for the first 20 miles. Something else to worry about for those insomniacs out there!
 

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Various German cars can have maybe 40 miles on the clock when delivered. Some companies also take samples out of a batch to perform an extended road test (lucky you). I'm not familiar with Lotus's practices, but it could be that 20 miles is nothing to worry about at all. We'll know more when the first cars arrive.

Yes, you worry way too much.

- J

PS: The car is new, I believe, until registered.
 

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I went for a ride in an Esprit that the dealer had just gotten in a few days before and it had 52 miles on it. I think we put about 10 miles on it, and I dont know if anyone had ridden in it previously. The dealer took it easy with the car since it was not broken it yet. I dont know if most dealers have gas pumps on site, but I'm sure that most cars are taken to a gas station and filled up before they are delivered, so this could add a few miles too.

There are more important things to worry than how many miles your car has on it.

Once I went to test drive a car and the speedometer was disconnected. Turns out they only had one car on the lot that was a stickshift and they said the owner of the dealership was letting his son use the car but I could take it for a ride. When I mentioned that the speedometer wasnt working the saleman stated, "Oh, we will fix that if you want to buy the car, we wouldnt sell a car that has anything wrong with it."

Um, isnt a few thousand miles intentionally not recorded on the odometer mean something is wrong? Needless to say, I never bought anything from that dealership.
 

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This is where the Black Box recorder could be used to an advantage. A Dealer could do a quick scan and say "See, no abuse yet." or a printout could show that those first 40 miles have not been proper and some agreement will have to be reached regarding warranty.

It's hard to say how many miles they will arrive with. Some may get a spin around the Hethel track, and some will likely get dealer jaunts like any other "new" car. I don't so much mind miles as improper break-in.
 

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My current car came with 6 miles on the odo. A car that was used for joy rides by mechanics or for test drives is not new by my definition. I know how people treat cars on test drives, it's probably about the worst thing you can do to a new car that's not broken in yet. If I found out that my car was driven more than absolutely necessary before delivery, I would probably reject it. For me the main reason for buying cars new is knowing that they haven't been abused.

Since each dealer is required to buy a demo, the temptation to use customer cars for test drives will hopefully be small.
 

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I used to think that 10 miles was the limit of being acceptable for a "New Car." But I have learned that those first 10 miles are probably some of the most abusive your car will ever see. You've got people at the port driving your car, the lot attendant who drives your car, and the technician who preps your car. None of these people are very careful. But with today's engine building standards, I'm a bit less worried about a few miles. Also see the thread on these forums about the Mototune break-in. It does have some merit to it.

With my former '03 Mustang Cobra, SVT engineers purposely uploaded a tune to the engine that ran the car pig-rich so the engine wouldn't be damaged in transit. The technician at the dealership would then reflash the ECU with the regular tune. The problem was that many of the catalytic converters were failing because the guys at the lot in Dearborn all the way through to the transport guys would flog those cars and load-up the catalytic converter. Even though my car was delivered with 4.x miles on it, it was pretty well run-in even before I got my hands on it. On the other hand, my '03 Mustang Mach 1 had 125 miles on it when I bought it. No problems at all and, beyond changing the oil at 250 miles, never worried about break-in.

The question is whether the Elise will have already been run hard before you even get it. I had heard that the cars are test-run on a track in Hethel before being shipped. If that's true, I'd suspect that you'll probably have a few miles on the odo and a partial "Mototune" break-in already done.

Bob
 

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rtking said:
The question is whether the Elise will have already been run hard before you even get it. I had heard that the cars are test-run on a track in Hethel before being shipped. If that's true, I'd suspect that you'll probably have a few miles on the odo and a partial "Mototune" break-in already done.

Bob
Every car on Hethel before delivery? That's an aweful lot of man hours for a production run of 6K and a small company like Lotus. I suspect it's cars pulled at random. Much like I get pulled randomly for search every single time I fly :D
 

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I think it was the Best of British video that claimed every Lotus had a full-toot run on the Hethel Dyno, and some were selected for track testing. Anyone remember for sure?
 

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Ground Loop said:
I think it was the Best of British video that claimed every Lotus had a full-toot run on the Hethel Dyno, and some were selected for track testing. Anyone remember for sure?
I do recall hearing that. Not sure if it's true, but it was stated every car coming off the line was given a run on the dyno or track.
 

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Im cleaning the house today so I just jumped on to look around real fast and havent read all the responses above so if I echo what someone else said I apologize.

I have a red and white striped miata that was used by Mazda to take to trade shows. It was their first R package so they added factory stripes and used it as a "show" vehicle.

I tracked the car down in a small berg called Elizabethtown Kentucky and made an offer on it. It was sold to me as NEW and had just over 2,500 miles on it. I asked how you can sell a car with 3,000 miles as NEW and they told me, but I forgot the explaination.

So, yes, a car with 40, 50, 100 miles...is certainly still able to be sold as NEW.
 

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The rule of thumb (from a legal standpoint of "new") is this: If a vehicle has never been titled before, then it can be sold as "New." The dealership probably acquired the car as part of their "inventory." When you came in to buy it, they assigned the title to you. That's when the car no longer become "New" anymore.

In those instances where cars have been taken back because a dealership couldn't finance a person, those cars are sold as "used" even though they may have only 30 or 50 miles on it. The reason is the same: Title has been issued to a person, so it can no-longer be sold as new.

Audi did the same thing with some of their slower moving models. They would encourage dealers to title the car to themselves, then sell the A6 sedans used with a whopping 12 - 15 miles on them. The benefit is that the cars sold at about what they would have normally (buyers negotiate the price down) but buyers felt like they were getting a better value because the cars were "Certified" and would have their warranties extended to 5 years/100K miles.

Bob
 

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Just saw a certified used Escalade yesterday with a sign on it-"5 year 100K miles" and was thinking that must be a heck of lot better than new! Was on 03 on loan to a customer of mine that just bought a new 'lade and XLR. I'd almost feel bad knowing I could of saved money and got a better warranty! (but not the tax write off)

My new Bug had miles on it when I got it. I think 40 something.

I used to work in the auto industry and dyno test runs were common. It was my neighbors full time job for GM Hydramatic.

I don't see a problem with running a vehicle in a fully controlled, standard test envirionment that is heavily monitered and recorded. I think a certain # also need to be run on the standard EPA test cycle too.
 

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I would expect less than 40 miles on a car sold as "new" and "not used for demo rides."

Another interesting question is, When do you stop describing your latest car a "new" car? Is it a matter of time or miles?

One month? Three months?
1,000 miles? 3,000 miles?

When does the new-car aura wear off?
 

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JonM3Coupe said:
Another interesting question is, When do you stop describing your latest car a "new" car? Is it a matter of time or miles?

One month? Three months?
1,000 miles? 3,000 miles?

When does the new-car aura wear off?
Your friends and coworkers will let you know:

You: "Hey, check out my new whip!"
Friend/Coworker: "Seriously, dude, it's like three years old now. And don't say 'whip'."
 

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my car i got from HRM had 9 miles on it.
i drove 100 miles home that day.
 

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My Elise had 5 miles on it when I took delivery. I find that when I order a car It will have less miles. When I buy a car off the dealer lot, I may get many miles. I bought an end of year model (Dodge Truck) and it had 200 miles on it. Another item, dealers sell cars used for tennis or golf events as new too.
 
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