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2015 ATS Coupe
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Discussion Starter #1
New on here. Originally from Canada and now live in Detroit. Curious on what I should expect to pay for 94-96 FWB with under 100k miles. I see various cars on the market but good examples are rare. I also see a massive price range. What do the experts say?
 

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68 DVC, 96 FLTWD Brgm, 11 CTS Premium (two)
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Pay as little as possible. That said the better ones are going to cost more. The mileage should not be a big issue IF the car was well cared for. I had my 1995 up to 200,000 mi before someone hit it, and the 1996 is over 120,000 and looks & driveslike a brand new car.
 

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Look closely at the frame in different areas.
Just because it's lower miles dosen't mean everything.
Maintence is the key.
Did it ever had a complete tune-up, water pump, fuel pump, recent brakes, are the tires rotted, etc...
That's where it can get costly, maintaining a clean looking car back to where it's almost as good as new.
Little things missing, broken, not working may not be a big deal for a driver.
But to make repairs that the owner thought was not important can also be time consuming & add up.
Like windows not functioning, seats missing movment, broken power antenna, only 1 set of keys & remote, warning lights on, spedometer cuts out, interior lights not working right, etc.
Some things just go bad with time like batteries, hoses, belts, tires, shocks, oil seals, etc

Maybe I'm low, but if it hasn't been maintained with newer wear items or needs minor repairs I would say $3k if the paint & interior are good. $1500 if it needs paint & the interior is worn. At that point it's basic transportation. And not really a hot item for that.
 

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2015 ATS Coupe
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Discussion Starter #4
thanks guys. I appreciate the input. I have been scouring trying to find good cars. its getting harder and harder. I ask for as many photos as possible. Some rust and rot is expected I guess. For example, the AC drain tube that falls off and the passenger footwell soaks for years.

The biggest mystery is the suspension. How can I tell that the leveling suspension is working?
 

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'84 Eldorado and Seville
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thanks guys. I appreciate the input. I have been scouring trying to find good cars. its getting harder and harder. I ask for as many photos as possible. Some rust and rot is expected I guess. For example, the AC drain tube that falls off and the passenger footwell soaks for years.

The biggest mystery is the suspension. How can I tell that the leveling suspension is working?
Sometimes it pays to have a car inspected too. Sellers don't always share the "bad" things. First I try to find a local inspection place and next use a nationwide inspection service. You can google search and choose. If the seller won't allow an inspection I would walk away. Sure they are going to find problems and it should be expected.

Don't be in a hurry to find a car. I agree pay the least you can. Some sellers are asking ridiculous prices. Hell they'll never sell and I doubt they will lower their asking price. I wouldn't even waste my time with those sellers. What you want to watch are for those lowering their asking price. Those sellers are more motivated to sell.

If you don't quite find the car with the interior you want shop salvage on copart.com for an interior swap. I recently picked up a '86 with a beautiful burgundy velour interior. The exterior isn't the best but hey I found a donor car. I am shopping between 2 burgundy cars and a few white ones to put that interior into.

Also if a seller can't take the time to take photo's I ask for I walk away. Don't waste my time. I could care less if they ever sell it.

Look everywhere, CARFAX has listings, cargurus, classiccars, autotempest.com, autotrader and autotraderclassic, www.cars-on-line.com, even Facebook marketplace. Ebay I'd probably shy away from. Mecum's auction lists cars but I have never used that route. There are other auction's too.
 

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One feature of Ebay is the ability to search compleated listings.
Then you can see actual selling prices vs sky high asking prices.

Looking at that year, model, under 100k miles, excluding limo & wagons I came up with $8,650 average Ebay completed sales price. If best offer accepted (no actual sales price) the listing amount -$1000 was used.
If you included cars over 100k, $7,100 was the average price. 164k miles was the highest listing.
Showing miliage makes a small differance of $1550 for under 100k vs under 165k.

There are many more ways to break it down that affects value.
Location, Year, Brougham option, or miles under say 50k or 25k.
Trouble is in the last 3 months history there's 22 results, of those only 16 sold. 4 were commercial chassis.

Currently there is only 4 of these cars for sale on eBay, excluding commercial chassis.
Didn't see 1 with any chassis / bottom end pictures.
Typical look how clean the back seat door panel is. Or look at the shiny door jamb.
Most low miles had the same story. Elderly persons car. Drove a little until they got sick. Then it was parked for 10-20 years until they passed.

Again, I don't care how many miles are on a car. If it's about 25 years old, there's a lot of things I wouldn't trust until inspecting & testing unless it was just done. That's where it get's costly and/or time consuming.

Value is based on finding another to pay that amount. As much as I like these cars the truth is by 1996 only 15,100 were sold, less than 1/4 from the decade before. I'm a believer that some cars are not recongnised as how good they were until years later. The Fleetwood fits into this category. What's hurt some muscle car values is you can buy new something that has more stock HP, handles better, has more saftey features, probibly better MPG, and has all the modern electronic conveniance options. The same is true with the Fleetwoods.

Paying a few thousand more that what it's worth may not be a big deal for some.
If that's you intrest & you have the money, then go for it.
I try to avoid getting way upside down in a vehicle.
 

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'84 Eldorado and Seville
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Watch out for those where someone has changed the radio or made other modifications. You never know what someone has done with the wiring. You buy it and it has a wiring problem later it may make it difficult to track down the cause. Such as low voltage battery drain, etc.

I have seen some low mileage FWB's for those years with a really bad driver's seat where it is torn. Either a bad seat design or someone has messed with the mileage. Not sure if one can disable the odometer reading for those years. Just looks odd to me.

I'd definitely shy away from those "low rider" modified ones. Talk about ruining a car. Hell they can't give those away. I see all kinds of those listed on Facebook marketplace.
 

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'84 Eldorado and Seville
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You might check Specialty Motors often. Sometime Anthony gets some very good used cars. I suspect he gets many of them from estate sales which is another avenue of finding a good one at a low price.

 

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91 Fltwd Coupe (93 Regal Coupe & 90 LSC SE)
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I have seen one higher mileage Fleetwood going for like $1000 CAD.. west coast car too.. he said it was more of a "parts car" so I could imagine it would be one thing after another to keep it running but for the price it was tempting and it looked pretty decent for the money though had to pass as I'd just bought the Buick. Generally see them for 2 or 3 times that. An amazing example I'd expect to pay $5000+ or more depending on color combination, originality, service history etc. Of course these cars generally go for less in Canada where gas prices are astronomical and the average fool is more likely to be seen in an overpriced Corolla econobox than anything decent.

By the way how did you move to the US? Would also love to get out of what is turning into a shit hole country.
 

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96 FWB
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Lucky anyone just starting out down the ownership road who comes across this thread. A lot of hard-earned practical smart sense in these here posts.

One feature of Ebay is the ability to search compleated listings.
Then you can see actual selling prices vs sky high asking prices.

[snip]
..... I'm a believer that some cars are not recongnised as how good they were until years later. The Fleetwood fits into this category. What's hurt some muscle car values is you can buy new something that has more stock HP, handles better, has more saftey features, probibly better MPG, and has all the modern electronic conveniance options. The same is true with the Fleetwoods.
x1,000 ! Hence all those 'new car mortgages' keeping the economy going for a car you can't work on, and diminishing the value of older cars I favor a great deal more at the same time! Having the opportunity to drive a fair amount of new cars around, I find too much stuff intended for 'my driving pleasure' amounts to nothing more than a distracting nuisance from real driving. Depreciation on a 25-year old car is $0, and ins. and taxes are sane. What's not to love?

[snip]
Paying a few thousand more that what it's worth may not be a big deal for some.
If that's you intrest & you have the money, then go for it.
I try to avoid getting way upside down in a vehicle.
I would describe that I 'paid too much' for my current FWB, but that brings to mind the difference between that and 'paying more than it's worth'. For the year before deciding to retire my first '95 FWB of 16 years (in order to replace it with another one), I followed the same research described above using Ebay and other sales results to get a feel for the 'actual purchase' market. I had certain 'must haves' along with numerous 'nice to haves' of varying priority. I ended up with a 3-owner (the 2nd was the nephew who had it only 6 mo.) Arizona '96 FWB 52k, no-wrecks. It was butt-ugly white again but that can be fixed, and the tan inside was a relief from blue in mine. 100% showroom engine bay except an $1,100 opti, And dam near original undercarriage and zero wear inside.

I had kept up with the seller and he was at $2k more than I valued it. In 6 months he dropped a grand and I agreed, including ~$500 worth of neat extra parts. Considering this will be my driver for about the same time as my last one, I figure the extra $$$$ amortized over that time makes it a pretty acceptable deal. Plus, I get something where the definition of 'project car' is limited to mostly just all fun stuff of upgrading the running gear.
Cliffs: Buy the car, not the price.


.......

[snip]
The biggest mystery is the suspension. How can I tell that the leveling suspension is working?
Meh. $50 for a FSM and an hour's reading over coffee, and auto-level system becomes less complicated than a radio.

Then, $90 for Airlift 1000s and you'll find you don't even need those crap airshocks. You can finally install bonafide 'shock-absorbing quality' shocks back there.

Said replacement driver so far. Just needs another 1/3 coil off the fronts: And all de-chromed and a paint job: Never ends:

577094
 
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