When purchasing a used vehicle, there are many different branded titles that you may come across, one of which is an odometer rollback title. If you are unfamiliar with this type of branded title, here is a quick guide on everything you need to know about odometer rollback titles.
Aptly named, an odometer rollback title is given to vehicles that have had their odometers tampered with. An odometer measures the distance that a vehicle has traveled. Because vehicles with lower mileage have generally experienced less wear and tear, they typically have a higher value than a similar vehicle with greater mileage. As such, some dishonest sellers may roll back the number on a vehicle’s odometer to make it seem like the vehicle has traveled fewer miles than it actually has so they can sell it for more money. Tampering with the odometer of a vehicle is illegal and punishable by law.
Determining if a vehicle's odometer has been rolled back is often difficult and generally requires an inspection by a professional mechanic. If the vehicle has already received an odometer rollback title, however, obtaining a vehicle history report from a trusted source is also a good way to determine if the odometer has previously been tampered with.
The decision of whether to purchase a vehicle with an odometer rollback title is a personal choice. The obvious downside to purchasing a vehicle with an odometer rollback title is that you don’t know exactly how many miles the vehicle has driven. While the odometer may say that it has only driven 30,000 miles, it could have actually driven over 100,000 miles. As such, it is difficult to gauge the remaining lifespan of a vehicle with an odometer rollback title.
That said, vehicles with such a title often sell for much less than a vehicle with a clean or clear title. As such, the buyer must weigh the risks of purchasing a vehicle that may have far more miles than it says with the benefits of a lower price tag.
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