closeup of odometer

Buying a Car with True Miles Unknown and Not Real Miles


True Miles Unknown (TMU) is the extra modest cousin of its way more blunt and outspoken relative, Not Actual Miles (NAM). These two phrases are used to explain a automobile that had one of some totally different sad events Happens with it.

Often seen abbreviated in categorized advertisements, TMU and NAM imply precisely what they describe: that mileage historical past is one massive fats query mark. It might solely be 83,000 miles, or it might be 283,000 miles. Your guess is barely pretty much as good because the homework you do. That homework begins with the automobile’s historical past (Carfax, AutoCheck, or publicly accessible information), besides, you may get caught.

  • In some circumstances, the unique odometer broke and was changed in some unspecified time in the future with a special mileage studying.
  • In others, the odometer remains to be damaged or it solely reads 5 digits – some automobile histories would say the automobile’s precise mileage “exceeded the mechanical limit.”
  • Occasionally, it may very well be proved that the odometer was turned again by a felony criminal to point out low miles.
  • Finally, it is attainable {that a} mileage error might have been entered on the again of the title – throughout automobile sale or switch – leading to a brand new title that now not reads “true miles unknown” or “actual miles not”.
  • Consider the supply if you happen to purchase a True Miles Unknown automobile. at auction, you may get it from a financial institution, authorities company, or a non-dealer that has no incentive to deliberately disable the odometer studying. I’ve seen some sellers massive and small tampering with the odometer… and it is by no means in your favor.
  • Private sellers are a very totally different animal. They are sometimes advised that their automobiles are of no worth if their automobiles have TMU/NAM marks on their titles. Many persons are promoting a real mile unknown automobile on-line as a result of sellers recurrently supply lowballs on these autos when it comes time to do enterprise with them.
  • Credit unions and banks typically carry TMU/NAM autos. I purchased a basic Ford Ranger from a credit score union that was marketed as 541,000 miles and “True Miles Unknown” on the windshield. I inspected it and located it was solely 54,100 miles.
  • Dealers are one other supply of TMU/NAM automobiles and vehicles. An proprietor Toyota Highlander got here in good situation with a married mileage historical past from a neighborhood dealership as a result of the supplier checked the fallacious field on the again of an out-of-state title.
  • Government auctions, auto finance firms and different native entities will typically have autos with TMU/NAM histories. I used to be in a position to decide up a 1994 Ford Explorer for $100 from a municipality in metro Atlanta with no keys or title and TMU historical past. I fastened a number of of these points and offered it for $2,000.
  • Purchasing a TMU/NAM automobile from a non-public social gathering may end up in an impressive deal which, as I discussed, may end up in individuals being advised that their autos are undervalued. Before you purchase it although, remember to get Carfax first and see if you happen to can estimate miles by estimating the annual mileage earned earlier than the odometer is an issue. An proprietor who drove about 15,000 miles a yr after which had nearly no improve in mileage a number of years later, in all probability drove the identical variety of miles throughout that point. I’ve gotten some wonderful offers this fashion over time.
  • As with any used automobile transaction, a good pre-purchase inspection can assist establish potential issues or deferred upkeep that won’t replicate the mileage studying (or lack thereof).
  • If you select to not do your due diligence or if you find yourself with a automobile that you simply assume was not correctly represented, be ready for a irritating authorized battle. Most states solely cowl damages you can show, and it’s tough to show {that a} vendor deliberately misled you. If you are ready to take action, you might pursue “triple” damages that features as much as thrice what you paid for the automobile, plus all different prices related to the lawsuit. However, amassing that cash is one other problem.

As a supplier, I do not like autos with actual miles unknown or actual miles as a result of I discover it extremely simple to search out out with a Carfax historical past and an inspection prior to buy. Then I clarify that historical past to the shopper over the cellphone and electronic mail them a replica of the Carfax historical past earlier than they arrive to drive. That approach they know and perceive precisely what I discussed within the advert about mileage historical past. That groundwork makes an enormous distinction when shopping for a automobile labeled as True Miles Unknown or Not Actual Miles.

Removing uncertainty offers you a greater bang on your cash. So all the time dive deep and hint the historical past of the odometer. Also confirm its general situation with a mechanic who has extra skilled eyes than you.

This is the way you exchange the query mark that’s the mileage studying and the exclamation level.


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