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Art of the flip: Examining the Echo’s damage

Any of y’all ever been around an elderly person in your life? Namely, when they kind of lose their concept of time? They told me this car had been “sitting about a year” but the more they explained, I realized it was far longer!

And my hunch was verified when I saw the oil change sticker, this car has 131k, and it’s next oil change here:

Illustration for article titled Art of the flip: Examining the Echo’s damage
Photo: Kevin W
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Originally, I had plans to drive the car back home - some 50 miles, all freeway. But then my roommate casually pointed out that the tires on the car were from 2008. In other words, these tires were from Obama’s first term.

Yet, we were able to loosen the alternator enough to slip the accessory belt off so I could at least start the car and see if the motor is any good. After a bit of coaxing, the Echo started up. It ran pretty decently for having who-knows-how-old gas in it.

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Illustration for article titled Art of the flip: Examining the Echo’s damage
Photo: Kevin W

I went and looked at the car today, just to get a better look as to what I’m in for.

Illustration for article titled Art of the flip: Examining the Echo’s damage
Photo: Kevin W

The body is okay; no rust which is important, but it’s got dents and scratches. But also it’s a 20 year old economy car. I also need a hubcap, too.

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I actually plan on maybe clay barring and waxing the car. It’s quarantine, not like I have much else to do.

The interior is in decent enough shape, albeit dirty. I think I’m going to rent an extractor from Home Depot and do a hot water extraction on the seats.

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Illustration for article titled Art of the flip: Examining the Echo’s damage
Photo: Kevin W

The stereo has already been wired for an aftermarket setup, so looks like the Toyota stereo they gave me won’t work. No biggie.

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Illustration for article titled Art of the flip: Examining the Echo’s damage
Photo: Kevin W
Illustration for article titled Art of the flip: Examining the Echo’s damage
Photo: Kevin W
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Look at this old-school aftermarket cruise control! None of the Toyota NBC cars supported factory Toyota cruise control. The Echo, Scion xA and xB, were never offered with cruise. If you wanted it, you had to use one of these kits.

Illustration for article titled Art of the flip: Examining the Echo’s damage
Photo: Kevin W
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The next generation supported it natively, as adding cruise to my 2007 Yaris hatchback only involved adding the stalk and a wire.

The guy gave me a whole bunch of “echo stuff”, most of it was trim pieces, and old accessory belts that were cracked or moldy - but there was one gem: a box of NGK Iridium spark plugs, unopened. Score.

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Illustration for article titled Art of the flip: Examining the Echo’s damage
Photo: Kevin W

The woman kept the dealer stock key tag all these years. Why? I don’t know.

Illustration for article titled Art of the flip: Examining the Echo’s damage
Photo: Kevin W
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Ok, so here’s a breakdown of what I have budgeted for the car:

Purchase price, tax, title, registration: $765

Used alternator: $45

Brakes, accessory belt, wiper blades - $90.48

Tires, Weslake NP18 175/65/R14 ~ $170 Mounted and balanced.

I’m aiming to get about $1800 for it or so.

Illustration for article titled Art of the flip: Examining the Echo’s damage
Photo: Kevin W
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Stay tuned for more about this dopey ass car.

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