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Is my Rav4 worth saving?


Krizano
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I cannot thank you enough for discussing this. If they paid market value then I'd be happy. I just want my car... and if it's to be a Rav4, then one like it as they don't make them anymore... and I don't know a Toyota SUV that's small enough for my use.

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1 hour ago, FROSTYBALLS said:

... the settlement should be between market value and retail value. You won't get full retail value for the car, as cars advertised by dealers include their profit margin, and insurers won't pay the profit.

 

I was having trouble believing what Frosty was saying but he is perfectly correct ... the likely settlement figure will be at least what you could have got for your vehicle before the accident - so somewhere between the trade-in / WBAC value and what you might be able to achieve through a private sale. If you haven't already, use Autotrader (or similar) to work out what those values are.

The settlement figure won't be sufficient to replace your car with a like-for-like vehicle at a dealer - this seems rather cruel but that is the way it is. Look at it this way ... if you wanted to trade-in your car for something new you would expect to receive a trade-in value for your car - the settlement figure should be a 'generous' trade-in value so that you are not out of pocket on that type of deal.

I don't understand why you haven't claimed on your own insurance. That way, you'd get you settlement figure relatively quickly and with far less hassle on your part. They would then claim from the Royal Mail or their insurers. As they have admitted liability and your insurance company are not out of pocket it would be a "no fault" claim and your no claims bonus would be unaffected. As things stand, you are paying for insurance and doing their job for them!

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Well, it's hard for me to accept their offer. It is going to cost me £800 to rent a vehicle for two weeks, blah blah blah. My insurance company is not interested, have not called me and seem really gormless and I don't have time to stand out in the hallway at work and talk for half an hour.

I am trying really hard to not be out of pocket. I invested in that car. I know insurance doesn't - especially in hit and run - take care of everything but I want it to take care of MOST of the problem.

Unfortunately, the Rav4 3 door is no longer made. That's the rub!

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15 minutes ago, Krizano said:

Is that an SUV? I'll have a look. If it has clearance and can get me through mud and grass and water...

As far as I can remember, the second generation Terios, which is the one I pictured, was based on the three door Rav4  (Daihatsu were majority owned by Toyota at the time, and are now fully owned by Toyota). Was also sold as the Toyota Rush in some markets.

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I really appreciate your help, Frostyballs, but the engine is a little too small and I don't think it has enough clearance for the mud and ruts I encounter every season... also it's sort of ugly. (I know, beggars can't be choosers)

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You are all quite correctly describing what insurers' practice is, but the injured party does not have to acquiesce to that.  Krizano could, if he was prepared to do so, simply sue the Royal Mail for a sum which would meet all his expenses arising, and adequately repair the vehicle, or the price of an equivalent replacement (and that price would necessarily include the seller's profit).  In such proceedings, the normal practices of insurers would be irrelevant - he would be asking the court to remediate his losses (Including legal costs).

If the Royal Mail were insured, and the insurers were not prepared to meet the award, that would be for Royal Mail to pursue with them, after they had paid the award in full.

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That sounds rather good. (And I'm a she, but who's counting?) I will consider this quite seriously and discuss with my lawyer.

I really appreciate you all weighing in on this because I haven't had to deal with this stuff before - straightforward hit & run, etc but not this. It means a lot that you're taking the time to advise.

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If Royal Mail don't self insure and do use an insurance company, it would be the insurance company who are responsible for the decision, and presumably it would be them who would be covered by any legal action. If this is the case, all Royal Mail will do is to refer any action to their insurer.

This could be handled in the small claims court, so would not be expensive.

However, whether this is monetarily worthwhile depends on what the market value of the vehicle would have been before the accident.

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Excellent point, thank you Frostyballs. Time is also an issue, of course. I know one cannot be emotionally attached to a car, so I'm ready to go shopping tomorrow. Maybe buy something and fight out the legals later... So glad I've found this forum. Really great to have input from people who know.

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2 minutes ago, FROSTYBALLS said:

If Royal Mail don't self insure and do use an insurance company, it would be the insurance company who are responsible for the decision, and presumably it would be them who would be covered by any legal action.

I think not.  The Royal Mail is responsible to the injured party.  The insurance company has a contractual relationship with the insured, but the insured cannot hide behind them.  To put it simply, if the court says "Pay £3000", the insured cannot say "but I'm only covered for £2,000" - the court's response would be "then you pay the extra £1000 out of your own resources".

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This is all dependent on how much the vehicle was actually worth before the accident. The basis of any accident claim, regardless of whether an insurance company is involved or not, is that the victim should not be better off as a result of the claim settlement. 

Really what the OP needs to do is to try to establish how much the vehicle was likely to be worth before the damage, and online valuations from the likes of We buy Any Car, Auto Trader, RAC etc, will go some way to determine this. I would suggest getting valuations from more than one source, average these out, and one can then make an informed decision on the way forward.

Whether that is going back to Royal Mail or their insurer to say this is how much the car was likely to be worth and negotiating the settlement, small claims action or whatever. If the OP decides on legal action, they would need to advise (in writing) that any settlement received is interim and subject to a future decision  by the small claims court.

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1 hour ago, FROSTYBALLS said:

This is all dependent on how much the vehicle was actually worth before the accident. The basis of any accident claim, regardless of whether an insurance company is involved or not, is that the victim should not be better off as a result of the claim settlement. 

Really what the OP needs to do is to try to establish how much the vehicle was likely to be worth before the damage, and online valuations from the likes of We Buy Any Car, Auto Trader, RAC etc, will go some way to determine this. I would suggest getting valuations from more than one source, average these out, and one can then make an informed decision on the way forward.

Whether that is going back to Royal Mail or their insurer to say this is how much the car was likely to be worth and negotiating the settlement, small claims action or whatever. If the OP decides on legal action, they would need to advise (in writing) that any settlement received is interim and subject to a future decision  by the small claims court.

I agree, except the basis of valuation should not be what a trader would pay for the car (We buy Any Car) but what he would charge for it, because that is what the victim will have to pay to obtain a replacement.

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Gentlemen (I assume Frostyballs is a man), I am very grateful for all your guidance. This has been a goldmine for me and given me tremendous advice. I also appreciate hearing all thoughts, so thank you. I'll let you know how things turn out... hopefully, they will turn out.

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8 hours ago, Krizano said:

I really appreciate your help, Frostyballs, but the engine is a little too small and I don't think it has enough clearance for the mud and ruts I encounter every season... also it's sort of ugly. (I know, beggars can't be choosers)

Have you looked at the Suzuki Grand Vitara?  It came in a 3 door version as well as a 5.

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Okay, think I've found a replacement: 2007 Rav4 5door. Do I need to be concerned with the rear differential problem? My brother, niece and famliy friend in America have all had a problem with this. Is this so in the UK too?

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Presumably this is a petrol version and if so they are pretty free of issues. Certainly the diff isn’t a problem area - on high mileage / abused cars the diff mounting can fail but it’s not a big deal. When test driving the car - check for knocks whining or rumbling. The diff holds less than a litre of oil which needs changing on the service schedule.

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Amazing! What would I do without this forum. Thank you so much! Going for a test drive Saturday, sort of excited even if this car is WAY too big for me.

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Checked out the Daihatsu Terio... any other suggestions for a small car that can also go through grass, mud, rocks and ruts? All suggestions gratefully considered.

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If you want a soft roader of compact size - consider Honda CR-v, Honda HR-v, Suzuki Jimny, Suzuki Vitara, Daihatsu Terios. ............. if it's 4WD capability you want for wet grass, tracks etc then theres other options such as the  Suzuki SX4 4x4. Compared to your 3 door Rav4 - the 4.3 is rather bigger.  The Terios has the same sort of capability as your Rav - it's not a particularly roomy or refined car but the later versions are good value for money. Daihatsu no longer sell in the UK but there isn't an issue with parts availability. Heres my 2006 Rav4.3 which I sold in 2014 - excellent car.

 

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Can I just buy your car? (Time machine back to 2014...) Looks immaculate. Yes, considered the CRV and the Suzuki, but don't know about maintenance costs and inherent problems as I've owned a Rav4 since the 90s. The Vitara is, mainly, an unattractive car, and the Terio reviews are awful. The 5dr Rav I'm testdriving tomorrow seems like a big car to find parking for in central London. Why the hell did they stop making the 3dr??

BTW thank you so much for the detailed input. I'm googling all your suggestions....

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