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996 Owners Rejoice!

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The German Technical Inspection Association (TUV), together with the German car magazine Auto Bild, have released the result of the 2011 used car reliability report. The study is based on 7,253,709 general vehicle inspections performed by TUV's independent engineers, covering all the strong and the weak points of a large number of vehicles.

We'll start with the cars that would make excellent second-hand purchases, a category dominated by Toyota and Porsche. The German car maker managed to win five age categories.

One of its champions is the 911 (we are talking about the 996 generation, which was produced between 1997 and 2005), which managed to claim the top position in the following age classes: 6-7 years, 8-9 years and 10-11 years. The current incarnation of the Boxster (987), which has been around since 2004 shares the number one position of the 4 to 5 years of age with the Toyota Corolla Verso.

We'll move on to the Japanese automotive producer now. The second generation of the Prius, which was produced between 2004 and 2009 manage to become the first hybrid vehicle included on the list of winners of the TUV report. The company's Auris, RAV4, as well as the aforementioned Corolla Verso are other Toyota models that managed to secure a top ten place in the 2 to 3 years of age category.

At the other end of the reliability scale we find the Kia Carnival, which went down to the last place, just like it did last year. The flaws registered by the car include faulty brakes with corroded pipelines, oil loss and rusty exhaust. The same can be said about the Ford Ka (1996-2008), with the vehicle performing extremely bad especially in the 10 to 11 years of age category.

The study's overall conclusion was a negative one, as the rate of cars with serious problems has increased from last year (19.5 in comparison with 17.6). However, this is also due to the fact that the TUV stations have made more complex checks.

Edited by Loren
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This is great news as an owner of a 2001 996. I have 68,000 miles on the car now, I run Autocross and HPDE events and my experience has been that the car and the engine have been bulletproof for me.

I am thinking about having the IMS upgraded at this time given the miles.

I would like to time this with a new clutch but I had that done only 10k ago, and yes I don't know why I let them talk me out of it at the time...I dont like pushing my luck and my reasoning is that the clutch is relatively inexpensive to replace early but an engine is another matter.

This article gives me some peace of mind.




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  • 2 weeks later...

I lived in Germany for just shy of 20 years. Many of those were as a young adult where I had to get by with a used car and that used car required TUV inspection every two years (I worked on the economy). I can attest, in less than pleasant terms, to the thoroughness of the TUV technicians.

In Germany there is intense pressure to have high end vehicles maintained by the dealer. In the used car market a Porsche or a high end Mercedes/BMW that is not "Sheckheftgepflegt", that is, it has been fully serviced by a dealer and, more importantly, the service book full of the proper stamps indicating that fact, it will lose value. So you have very well maintained Porsches being inspected. I would trust that those cars would fly through TUV.

One other point: in order to be inspected, the vehicle must be driven to the inspection facility.

TUV only inspects running cars. They aren't going to check to see if the engine has been replaced. At least they didn't in my day.

Just my perspective on this.

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