Toyota Land Cruiser Before and After Pictures Show Why You Can Never Trust a Salvage Auction

Now you see extensive body and frame damage, now you don't. 

TempVIN | Copart

Whether or not it's a particularly active year for hurricanes, a suspiciously cheap vehicle in decent shape at a salvage auction is rarely the value it represents. And as this video shows, even something as durable as a low-mileage Toyota Land Cruiser is still potentially hiding some ugly, ugly secrets—a rollover crash, for example.

YouTuber Samcrac highlighted this Copart listing for a 2016 Toyota Land Cruiser located in Newburgh, New York with the microscopic starting bid of $60 and equally-tiny 212 miles on the clock. Though the ad describes both side and front end damage, the SUV looks to be in great shape save for a wrinkled right-rear quarter panel. Same with the interior, which appears flawless except for a large tear in the headliner and seat bolster caused by the right side curtain airbags inflating.

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Given the Land Cruiser's legendary reputation for toughness and longevity, this might seem like a pretty good deal to you. A little cosmetic surgery, and you've got yourself an off-road tank at a steep discount. But as Samcrac points out, things aren't want they seem.

There are a few telltale signs he picks up, like the misaligned hood and dodgy respray job along the side. It's googling the VIN, though, that reveals what really happened to this poor truck. As he shows, and you can try it yourself, the very first image shows the it with heavy front end damage, a scraped-up side, and most importantly, a caved-in roof. This Land Cruiser was absolutely rolled, and as the vehicle history report shows, it happened exactly eleven miles after the new owner drove it off the dealer lot in 2016. A previous salvage auction listing shows even more pictures of all the carnage.

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Not only is the body all messed up (and in all likelihood, the frame too), but the interior is also a disaster area. It looks like every airbag deployed, and the seats are covered in shattered glass and suspicious-looking stains. If you have any doubt that this is the same car, Samcrac points out the quarter panel dent that's visible in the Copart listing can be seen in the wreckage pictures as well.

The $60 opening bid is probably a couple digits off the eventual selling price—if that still seems like a steal, just ask yourself, do you want to drive around in this all day? Even if you're not worried about the personal safety, just imagine the the chorus of squeaks and rattles that must accompany every single bump in there. Oh, the rattling.

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