I have just bought a 2003 4Mo from an independant dealer. I was moving up from my Mk3 Gti and was looking for a clean V6 for a while but wanted black with black leather rather than tan or cloth. Saw one advertised with 40k and thought it was too good to be true - it was.
I drove it, fell in love, and stupidly bought it there and then, accepting that i would need to spend a few quid sorting the usual niggles (i did do an HPI and a My Car Check which came up fine). I have had VW's since my first car and now I feel such a Parus caeruleus as I should have seen the problems. I noticed that the O/S headlight wasn't looking quite right as it had the 'fake' fog but thought it was just a cheap repair by a previous owner. Essentially, problems with the door shuts on the O/S so I had it looked at by a local independant VW mechanic to sort the headlight and problems with the door (open door alarm with lights on not working, open door alert on the dash not working, safety light on the bottom of the door not working). I was then toild that my new love was perhaps not what it should be and to take it to a bodyshop who specialises in VW work.
Its had a proper knock to the O/S. Front O/S wheel is minus 10mm, damage to the A post, Roof to B-post crease (how the f did i not see that!), Inner and outer sill damage, floor pan damage, inadequate welding, door and boot shuts poorly painted. Front wing, door, rear quarter (part) all replaced with second hand parts prized from another motor (some of which were from a red car). Badly spot welded with a mig welder rather than seamed or spot welded properly.
To say that I am devestated is an understatement. To say that I am feeling like an idiot to not notice some signs even before the garage today put it on a ramp and lifted all the carpets and trim etc is even more so of an idiot, i should not be allowed to buy another car. It is so so obvious now.
I have spoken to the garage i bought it from and they have basically said that they inspected the car, had it MOT'd and that I looked at it and bought it, so its my problem. The place that I took it to today who i have used for over 10 years to do my bodywork on my split screen and Mk1 have said that its the worst repair they have seen and that although they can sort it visually it will still be a 2K bill.
I did ask before I bought it whether it had any accident damage and they said (verbally of course) No. They must have known. They are now saying that they HPI'd the car and had it MOT'd so it must be roadworthy. My History checks also show nothing on the history in terms of claims etc.
I'm now left with a car which i know has had some trauma, but i dont know what, other than it was extensive, and a repair that is even to my eyes quite shocking. I actually don't want to drive it now as I am unsure of the full extent. I've also just sold my Mk3 with FSH and all and i mean all bills from new and so am a bit stuffed.
I paid top money for it at 5.5K and spending another 2k on it for a car that I will declare to any future owner has been repaired so will be devalued, seems mad. But I'm stuck.
If anyone can offer any words of advice, I really would be grateful. As fellow VW people, please don't offer advice along the lines of you should have looked closer. By god, I know that and it hurts that I didn't.