A few months back, Car and Driver magazine ran a piece they called the “Rental Car Olympics”. Liability damage waivers aside, lawyers for Avis, Dollar, National and Enterprise rental companies will probably call it something else, namely “grounds for litigation”. Print magazines still have budgets for things like this, and I’m sure Car and Driver’s attorneys are busy earning their keep. Just in case you needed further evidence why you should never, under any circumstances, buy a former rental car, the video below should serve as a reminder. Remember, there’s a reason why rental cars get sold cheap.
While RideLust has neither the budget nor the legal staff to host our own rental car olympics, I have been known to return rental cars with a significant amount of “heavy use” on them. Like the MItsubishi Eclipse I once rented for a high performance track day; I picked it up with about 600 miles on the clock, and returned it two days later with bald tires, used up brake pads and (if I remember correctly) a slipping transmission. Then there was the time I went off-roading in a rented 4Runner, and learned the hard way that you should never wash off mud if it effectively covers brush pinstriping. I don’t condone this behavior, mind you, but I’ll leave you with this advice: sometimes, it’s a REALLY good idea to opt for the liability insurance.