The 2019 Volkswagen Golf R starts at a whopping $40,395 before you add options or the $895 destination fee. As a result, the model is only a few thousand dollars less than the more powerful Audi S3 which can run from 0-60 mph (0-96 km/h) in just 4.6 seconds.
While some might balk at the Golf R’s base price, Redditers recently noticed one example on eBay with a buy it now price of $22,500 (£17,125 / €19,651). That seems like a remarkable deal and the pictures suggest the hot hatch is in pristine condition. This isn’t too surprising as the listing says the car only has 12,753 miles (20,523 km) on it which isn’t bad for a 2016 model.
Of course, pictures don’t tell the whole story nor do all-cap proclamations such as “no issues whatsoever” and “absolutely nothing wrong with this R.” Below the bold claims are the revelation that this particular car has a rebuilt title due to an insurance flood claim. The listing doesn’t go into detail, but says the engine was hydrolocked even though water didn’t get into the cabin.
That’s a pretty big red flag, but the listing says the car has since been equipped with an all-new engine and recently traveled 5,000 miles (8,046 km) without issue. That requires a pretty big leap of faith from would-be buyers, but the savings are significant. Other 2016 models costs thousands more and have significantly higher mileage.
Regardless, the car sounds like a pricey gamble without a closer inspection. Speaking of the latter, AAA says buyers can spot flood damage by looking for unusual corrosion underneath the vehicle and by closely examining small spaces and crevices that are difficult to clean. If these areas show signs of mud or debris, it might be worth reconsidering your purchase.