Vehicle history reports can be an invaluable tool when shopping for a used Land Rover. Land Rover CPO vehicle come with a vehicle history check as part of the 150-point certified pre-owned inspection process, but if you are interested in purchasing a Land Rover from a private seller you will likely have to purchase a vehicle history report or convince the seller to purchase one for you.

Why Purchase a Vehicle History Report?

2009 Land Rover LR3

Click for Our Land Rover LR3 Buyer's Guide

A vehicle history reports provides peace-of-mind when going through the used vehicle buying process. Buying a used vehicle is always a bit of a gamble, especially if the vehicle is not covered by an existing warranty. A history report provides a great deal of background information on a vehicle which can instantly disqualify a vehicle for consideration.

For example, many used car shoppers refuse to purchase vehicles that were used in rental fleets. If the report flags the vehicle as a rental, that buyer can forget about that vehicle and move on. History reports can also hint at hidden damage that may not be readily apparent even while you are behind the wheel. Despite how nice a car may seem, few buyers are interested in used cars that may harbor hidden structural damage.

What a Vehicle History Report Can Reveal

A vehicle history report can reveal a great deal of basic information along with hidden problems. Using the AutoCheck® service as an example, we can quickly discover if the vehicle description matches the VIN number, the year, make, model, body style, vehicle class, engine size, country of assembly, vehicle age, and the number of owners.From there, the report is broken down into sections that describe accidents (AccidentCheck), title and other problems (ProblemCheck), odometer issues (OdometerCheck), and vehicle use (EventCheck). AutoCheck® also assigns an overall vehicle score, which shows how that particular vehicle ranks among similar vehicles.

AccidentCheck – Not all accidents or issues are reported, but those that were will show up on this portion of the report. Accident data is gathered from government sources and independent agencies (such as insurance providers). While a minor accident may be of no concern, it is still nice to know as much about a used vehicle as is possible before you sign on the dotted line.

ProblemCheck – ProblemCheck examines 15 problem areas to reveal abandonment, major damage incidents, fire damage title records, gray market title records (titled outside of the U.S.), hail damage title records, insurance loss records, junk/scrapped title records, odometer title mismatches, rebuilt/rebuildable titles, salvage titles, water damage title records, NHTSA crash test records, frame damage, or recycling facility records.

OdometerCheck – This portion of the report examines reported odometer readings to determine if there is evidence of a odometer rollback, tampering, or breakage. The odometer check can quickly reveal if a particular used vehicle traveled fewer or greater miles than average over its life, which can impact the value of the vehicle.

EventCheck – EventCheck rounds up the vehicle usage records to inform a potential buyer about events such as rental use, fleet use, lease use, loan/lien instances, title issuance, etc. The EventCheck will also examine records for taxi use, police use, government use, livery use, or whether the vehicle has been used as a driver education tool. Additional data can include accident reports, corrected record reports, emission/safety inspections, repossession, theft records, and more.

AutoCheck® is just one of many vehicle history report providers so report details and availability of information will differ between them. Major history check providers, including AutoCheck®, provide buyback programs to back up their history check products. However, no matter how comprehensive a check may be, no title history service is 100% fail-proof. Ultimately, you have to decide if you are comfortable purchasing a particular vehicle. If you have doubts, walk away!

How to Get a Vehicle History Report at No Charge

  • Purchase a certified pre-owned (CPO) vehicle from a Land Rover retailer.
  • Request the seller purchase the report for you if they have not already done so.
  • Browse eBay Motors listings that include a free AutoCheck® report.

Vehicle Safety Recalls, Complaints, and Bulletins

If you are primarily interested in recall information, you can obtain this data at no charge from the U.S. Department of Transportation web site. The NHTSA maintains a database of vehicle recalls, tire recalls, child restraint recalls, service bulletins (also called TSBs), and consumer complaints. You can conduct unlimited searches on a database that covers thousands of year, make, and model combinations. It is really an outstanding tool for the savvy car shopper.

Enter Your Email:

April 21, 2011


Articles, Buying & Ownership