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Thread: Where should I buy a DeLorean?

  1. #1
    Junior Member
    Join Date:  Jan 2020

    Posts:    2

    Where should I buy a DeLorean?

    I'm in the market for a DeLorean, and I'm looking to hear from the experts here. lots of questions

    I see plenty out there, but.... Where should I buy one? I haven't found threads speaking to this.

    Private sale with good records?

    From DMC dealers (midwest, houston)? Prices for sure look higher. What advantages are there to buying from them? They don't seem to respond to emails, but I haven't called yet. I'm looking to upgrade to stage III (don't see many for sale that have it already), how long does it take them to do that? Is there a waitlist?

    I'm prepared to travel to the car wherever in the country, since I absolutely must drive it before committing to buy.

    I was also thinking it'd be good to grab one that spent most of it's life in the south, so undercarriage isn't rotted like it would be up here in NH. I'm looking for turn-key great shape 3-season daily driver.

    I've wanted this car since I was a child, and it's finally time.
    Last edited by aharris82; 02-16-2020 at 06:15 AM.

  2. #2
    Senior Member
    Join Date:  Nov 2013

    Location:  NYS

    Posts:    2,415

    My VIN:    Formerly 10372, currently 4728 & 4519

    Coincidence, I bought a nice non-runner in NH a few months ago.
    I have a Mississippi car (472 I'll be selling this year or next. You might not be too far from where I live, so it's an opportunity to get a southern car nearby.

    I agree with first seeing the car in person and having a test-drive. Seeing multiple before buying is helpful as well, if you're not already familiar with the car in general.

    This year (early summer) there will be a small meet-up of DeLoreans in the Northern NY area. That would be a good opportunity to see a few different cars, and test drive the one I'll be selling.
    Livin' the dream....

  3. #3
    Senior Member adam_knox's Avatar
    Join Date:  May 2011

    Posts:    120

    I bought mine from Mike at DMC Midwest. I would recommend them. I was on the hunt for an automatic with grey interior and a non flap hood in driveable condition. Mike found one in about a week after i sent a feeler message to him from one of the cars he worked on in the recent past. Yes, i know i paid more than had I found one without a dealer in the middle doing a consignment, but the pros outweighed the typical car buying process. Here's what i liked about going through DMC Midwest:

    1. Time saver. Cars are all over the place, arranging flights, road trips, etc to see the car in a specific time frame can be difficult to do. There's no way with work and family that I could have found a "deal" in short period of time. DMC Midwest had the car and we picked a day to go down and check it out. There wasn't a "well, I have 3 other people looking at it so hurry up" or the dreaded "car got sold before you get there."
    2. Inspection. If you cant get to the car you'll need another set of hopefully experienced eyes to look over the car for you. Mike and his staff gave me a rundown of everything that had been done and things that could/needed to be done based on urgency/maintenance/safety/cosmetic. They know the cars inside and out.
    3. Comparison. They have tons of other cars on site, so they showed me my car and then cars in various conditions and i could see what mine was compared with other cars and the possible differences in price to pirchase or to get in a better condition. For example, my hood has a dent in it and a hint of the dreaded "x." I could see various hoods and determine hey, this hood isnt so bad or golly it would make the world of a difference if I held out for a pristine hood. At the price point of my car compared with other cars I thought I got a fair car and a car I was happy with mechanically and cosmetically. Had I saw my car in isolation, I might have either gotten giddy, like OMG, I can't believe I found a Delorean they are so rare, i have to get it while I can. Or conversly, thought the cars flaws were bigger/more severe than they actually were.
    4. Service. DMC Midwest made some fixes before I picked it up and he and Dave S. Did a late night emergency fix on our way home. Headlight switch literally broke on our way home.
    5. Trust. They are honest good people. They have no incentive to swindle you and sell you a lemon. They have a reputation they want to keep and they want to build a relationship with future owners so you use them in the futre for repairs, etc.


    Call Mike, doesn't hurt to see what he has on hand.



    Sent from my SM-N950U using Tapatalk

  4. #4
    Senior Member
    Join Date:  Jul 2017

    Posts:    200

    We also purchased from Mike at MW. We went to look in August of 2017 to see what different price points got as there were tons of comparables on site at their facility. This field trip also helped narrow down the different production changes and what we liked vs. not. At first, I wanted a later car, but my wife liked the earlier cars better, mostly for the all black interiors. We ended up agreeing on a gas flap hood, black interior, 5 speed with light wheels and a windshield antenna would be the car, or about 10% of DeLorean's produced with this combo. Apparently, Mike took note of a few of the things we said and mentioned it to a customer who's car matched these parameters and had been extensively serviced there. In May of 2018, I sent him the official list of parameters along with a general price point. Mike just so happened to have the exact car on site recently taken in on consignment from the aforementioned customer. I paid a 10% premium over finding said car myself since DMC franchises charge owners that amount to market and sell the car for them. By paying a bit more, I knew I was getting a good car with a good history from honest people who go out their way to make sure you are happy. Additionally, if you tell them what you want they can find it for you or know someone who has it that may want to sell. I think the small premium is worth it, but you can find better deals buying privately if you put in the leg work and act fast, since the good ones with good prices don't seem to last a long time.

  5. #5
    Senior Member
    Join Date:  Nov 2014

    Location:  Alexandria, VA

    Posts:    261

    Highly recommend Mike at Midwest or Rob Grady.

  6. #6
    Senior Member
    Join Date:  Nov 2013

    Location:  NYS

    Posts:    2,415

    My VIN:    Formerly 10372, currently 4728 & 4519

    Quote Originally Posted by Rich_NYS View Post
    Coincidence, I bought a nice non-runner in NH a few months ago.
    I have a Mississippi car (472 I'll be selling this year or next.

    Don't know WTH the sunglass emoji is about, but I can't edit it.

    Mississippi car is VIN 4728, I'm selling it this year or next. You're welcome to visit this Spring whether or not it's what you're looking for. Getting familiar with more than one car is a good place to start.

    +1 on calling Mike as well.
    Last edited by Rich_NYS; 02-16-2020 at 03:13 PM.
    Livin' the dream....

  7. #7
    Senior Member
    Join Date:  Jun 2011

    Posts:    4,586

    My VIN:    3937

    Quote Originally Posted by aharris82 View Post
    I'm in the market for a DeLorean, and I'm looking to hear from the experts here. lots of questions

    I see plenty out there, but.... Where should I buy one? I haven't found threads speaking to this.

    Private sale with good records?

    From DMC dealers (midwest, houston)? Prices for sure look higher. What advantages are there to buying from them? They don't seem to respond to emails, but I haven't called yet. I'm looking to upgrade to stage III (don't see many for sale that have it already), how long does it take them to do that? Is there a waitlist?

    I'm prepared to travel to the car wherever in the country, since I absolutely must drive it before committing to buy.

    I was also thinking it'd be good to grab one that spent most of it's life in the south, so undercarriage isn't rotted like it would be up here in NH. I'm looking for turn-key great shape 3-season daily driver.

    I've wanted this car since I was a child, and it's finally time.
    Keep in mind that while a northern car can look ugly underneath, a southern car that has spent it's life in the sun can look ugly on top. Interior surfaces, dash, seats, etc. but also exterior ones like the louvres. I would probably rather have sun beaten seats than a Swiss Cheese frame, but repairing sun damage can be costly too. Something else to consider. Look for both in good condition.

    Which brings up the number one consideration when buying one of these cars: condition

    And that's current condition. Which means go see it in person and drive it ideally. You seem to have already gotten that memo, so that's good.

    What advantage does a DMC franchise offer over a private sale? Usually it's about transparency and feeling good about the car being what you thought it was going to be. Not to say a private sale guy can't be honest and it also doesn't mean every DMC franchise has a perfect transaction history. Yes, the DMC prices are going to appear higher. That might be all they are though. An appearance of being higher. You'll find plenty of stories on here about guys buying cars that were priced lower but then they ended up putting a pile of extra cash into them to get them right.

    So if there is a number two consideration in buying one of these cars it is this: buy the best one you can find with the money you have available to you.

    That kind of comes back to condition, but it's a slightly different concept. A project car bought for $20,000 might cost you another $20,000 in the first couple of years just to make it a $30,000 car. Buying a $35,000 car on day one might see you put in $5,000 in the first couple of years to leave you a $37,000 car. You follow? We have a very different kind of math over here in DeLorean World.

    I would pick-up the phone to get in touch with one of the DMC franchise people. At least initially. Once you've established some kind of a relationship with people there, you can probably do things over email like ordering parts or asking some questions about how to fix something on the car. I'm not familiar with how long it takes to customize a car with engine upgrades and the like. I will say that you might want to find and drive a car or two that is stock and in GOOD condition. Many cars get a bad rap for being slow or unreliable and whatnot but that's only because they aren't in very good condition.

    Decide what type of transmission you prefer and maybe what colour you like the interior and then put aside all the other variations like hood style, antenna location, console clock, door pull straps, etc. Just keep in mind CURRENT CONDITION above all else. And whether it looks like the car was well cared for. Like did the guy take pride in it? Nothing says red flag to me more than for sale ads where the guy couldn't have bothered to even clean the interior or straighten the cargo net. If the guy and his car look like slobs, then move on and keep looking.


    Sept. 81, auto, black interior

  8. #8
    Member
    Join Date:  Jul 2017

    Posts:    46

    Quote Originally Posted by Jonathan View Post
    Keep in mind that while a northern car can look ugly underneath, a southern car that has spent it's life in the sun can look ugly on top. Interior surfaces, dash, seats, etc. but also exterior ones like the louvres. I would probably rather have sun beaten seats than a Swiss Cheese frame, but repairing sun damage can be costly too. Something else to consider. Look for both in good condition.

    Which brings up the number one consideration when buying one of these cars: condition

    And that's current condition. Which means go see it in person and drive it ideally. You seem to have already gotten that memo, so that's good.

    What advantage does a DMC franchise offer over a private sale? Usually it's about transparency and feeling good about the car being what you thought it was going to be. Not to say a private sale guy can't be honest and it also doesn't mean every DMC franchise has a perfect transaction history. Yes, the DMC prices are going to appear higher. That might be all they are though. An appearance of being higher. You'll find plenty of stories on here about guys buying cars that were priced lower but then they ended up putting a pile of extra cash into them to get them right.

    So if there is a number two consideration in buying one of these cars it is this: buy the best one you can find with the money you have available to you.

    That kind of comes back to condition, but it's a slightly different concept. A project car bought for $20,000 might cost you another $20,000 in the first couple of years just to make it a $30,000 car. Buying a $35,000 car on day one might see you put in $5,000 in the first couple of years to leave you a $37,000 car. You follow? We have a very different kind of math over here in DeLorean World.

    I would pick-up the phone to get in touch with one of the DMC franchise people. At least initially. Once you've established some kind of a relationship with people there, you can probably do things over email like ordering parts or asking some questions about how to fix something on the car. I'm not familiar with how long it takes to customize a car with engine upgrades and the like. I will say that you might want to find and drive a car or two that is stock and in GOOD condition. Many cars get a bad rap for being slow or unreliable and whatnot but that's only because they aren't in very good condition.

    Decide what type of transmission you prefer and maybe what colour you like the interior and then put aside all the other variations like hood style, antenna location, console clock, door pull straps, etc. Just keep in mind CURRENT CONDITION above all else. And whether it looks like the car was well cared for. Like did the guy take pride in it? Nothing says red flag to me more than for sale ads where the guy couldn't have bothered to even clean the interior or straighten the cargo net. If the guy and his car look like slobs, then move on and keep looking.
    Jonathan, not to put you on the spot... but Iím looking like OP is and Iím wondering... is a budget, say from $34k-$38k, still a reasonable budget to get a turnkey runner in current good condition? I seem to be having trouble finding cars in this range that donít have some kind of fatal problem with them.

    Iím reaching out to Mike from Midwest on Monday, but I thought Iíd get a feel for if my budget is insanely low for a good car.

    Thanks!


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

  9. #9
    Member
    Join Date:  Nov 2019

    Location:  Pittsburgh, PA

    Posts:    79

    Quote Originally Posted by ramiel05 View Post
    Jonathan, not to put you on the spot... but Iím looking like OP is and Iím wondering... is a budget, say from $34k-$38k, still a reasonable budget to get a turnkey runner in current good condition? I seem to be having trouble finding cars in this range that donít have some kind of fatal problem with them.

    Iím reaching out to Mike from Midwest on Monday, but I thought Iíd get a feel for if my budget is insanely low for a good car.

    Thanks!


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    I've looked at pretty much every car for sale online in the last few months, and yes, that's the right price. Most cars aren't like this, but just be a little patient and it'll come.

    Sent from my Pixel 3 using Tapatalk

  10. #10
    Member
    Join Date:  Jul 2017

    Posts:    46

    Quote Originally Posted by MrChocky View Post
    I've looked at pretty much every car for sale online in the last few months, and yes, that's the right price. Most cars aren't like this, but just be a little patient and it'll come.

    Sent from my Pixel 3 using Tapatalk
    Thatís good to know. Thanks!


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