Flip of Flop: Will You Land Rear First?

Welcome to another addition of Flip or Flop, the infrequent NPoCP variant that has you, the collective, Oppo debating whether the presented car is worth flipping for a profit, or setting aside in a Viking funeral.*

*Disclaimer: We do not actual track down the cars in question and burn them if they are found to be flops.

Since I rediscovered Copart through random YouTube binge-ing, it has got me thinking about flipping cars and going through idiotic schemes. I feel like spreading my idiocy with others and hope they will join me on this thought experiment.


Before we begin, let’s make some assumptions. First is that we will assume the Copart fees are about $600, I know that is variable by selling price, but to keep the calculations simple let’s go with that. Second, for me TTL will be about $450. I know this varies by state, but let’s keep it simple. If you want to use your own for your calculation - that’s great! Third, we are going to assume that nothing unreasonable is broken (unless stated). For example, if a car has rear damage, we won’t assume the compressor is broken (unless it’s a Porsche).

For the first time in this series, we have an auction based assessment. So just for fun, how much would you bid on this lot if you think it is worth flipping.


Today’s example is this 2013 Hyandai Veloster. This Veloster appears to be the non-turbo 1.6L with the automatic transmission. It also appears to have had a swift kick in the butt with a tree. It has a clean title with just under 70k miles.


The front, sides, and interior (at least the front portion) look okay. The rear shows some obvious faults. I would like to see pictures of the hatch interior to get a better assessment of the damage, but since this is for fun, I won’t dwell on it. I know we are a responsible enough to actually go view the car before making such an idiotic decision.


At minimum, this car needs a new hatch, both rear glass, a spoiler, and a right taillight. The hatch is a bit complicated because I do not know if this particular car has a rear camera. The rear camera adds to the price of the liftgate, so I will assume it does have one. Fortunately, a brief scouring of the internet resulted in a complete hatch w/ spoiler off of another wrecked Veloster that color matched. That solves many of the parts issues. Here are the prices for parts:

  • Tailgate (color match with glass and heater) $400 +shipping
  • Tailight $100
  • Lift Supports $11.27*2 = 22.54 + 6.99 shipped = $29.53
  • Rear Wiper Motor $40 (this may be salvageable, but with the hatch bent who knows)
  • Rear Wiper Blade $10

Those parts are just assuming what is wrong via the pictures. I am sure I am missing many things. Of course there is the possibility of further damage as you proceed in the rebuild process, and the fact that there are no rear interior shots is a bit concerning. There is also a rather large dent above the RR door that is most likely in the uni-body. There are also several wires in the trunk area that would need replacing. Also don’t forget about your tax, title, license, and registration.


If you haven’t written the car off yet, let’s take a look a the numbers. From our parts price, add the $600 in fees and $125 minimum auction price. The total is already at $1304.53. Copart claims the retail value of this car is $10,836. That is most likely high and the real seller price will probably be between $7500-$9500.


So what say you Oppo, is this a flip or a flop. If it is a flip, what is your max bid to pull it off successfully?

Here is a summary of my minimum calculated costs...

Car: X (min 125)

Fees: $600

Parts: $579.53

TTL: ~$450 (varies by state)

Total: $1629.53 + X

What is your “X?”

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