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6 Incredibly Low-Mileage Older Cars on Autotrader

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author photo by Doug DeMuro September 2016

Every so often, a vehicle is listed on Autotrader with inexplicably, absurdly, ridiculously low mileage, despite the fact that it's been many years since it was a new car. I love perusing these listings. More importantly, I love sitting there and asking myself, "Why?" Why did you buy this car if you were barely going to drive it? Why did you so lovingly preserve such a relatively normal car? And most importantly, why -- after keeping it for 17 years and putting just 7,205 miles on the odometer -- have you decided that today is the day to sell it?

We may never know the answers to these questions. But today, with this list of six incredibly low-mileage cars for sale on Autotrader, you can join me in asking them.

1997 BMW Z3: 1,818 Miles, $21,997

This 1997 BMW Z3 with only 1,818 miles is available from Cosmo Motors in Hickory, North Carolina. It's silver over black with a 6-speed manual transmission, a pristine interior and body, and the optional 2.8-liter straight 6-cylinder that probably propelled this car from 0 to 60 miles per hour ... twice.

The best part about this Z3 is the one-owner Carfax report, because it reveals something amazing: When the owner purchased it on December 26, 1997, it already had 413 miles on the odometer. In other words, this isn't a car that has covered just 1,818 miles in 19 years -- it's a car that has covered 1,400 miles in 19 years. It may just be the best-preserved Z3 left.

1987 Chevrolet Blazer: 12,400 Miles, $24,750

This 1987 Chevy Blazer is a time capsule from a different era, back when SUVs were purchased by people who wanted to survey their land and pull stumps out of the ground so they could be used to keep warm in the winter. This is a far cry from today, when it won't be long before SUVs park themselves.

I suspect this particular Blazer didn't do much stump-pulling, though, as it's a 1987 model with just 12,400 miles on the odometer. Available from a private seller in McLean, Virginia, just outside Washington, D.C., it has a blue exterior, a dark-blue roof and a blue interior with blue seating and blue carpeting. Asking price: $24,750. Laugh now, but someday I bet that will seem like a great deal.

1992 Chevrolet Corvette Convertible: 9,655 Miles, $19,843

I always had a soft spot for the C4 Chevrolet Corvette, available throughout the 1980s and early 1990s, and this particular example is one of my favorites: a gorgeous red Corvette convertible with a red interior and more modern controls and touches than the earlier C4 models. Admit it: This C4 is kinda cool.

It's even cooler when you consider that this is one of the last nearly new C4 Corvettes left -- with just 9,655 single-owner miles, there aren't many like this anymore. If you're interested, it's available at Alexander Ford in Boaz, Alabama, for $19,843.

2000 Lincoln Town Car: 4,111 Miles, $19,995

When the Lincoln Town Car and its platform-mates, the Ford Crown Victoria and the Mercury Grand Marquis, were canceled, many people bemoaned the fact that they'd never again be able to buy another new, rear-wheel-drive, body-on-frame, V8-powered full-size sedan from Ford. They were wrong.

That's because this 2000 Town Car is currently available for sale from a private seller in Reading, Pennsylvania, with just 4,111 miles on the odometer. That's right. Four thousand. One hundred. Miles. Of course, these are single-owner miles -- and of course, the owner is asking a pretty penny: $19,995. But isn't it worth it for what might be the last remaining new Panther-platform full-size sedan?

1999 Mercedes-Benz C230: 5,388 Miles, $7,900

For many of the cars on this list, it makes sense why their mileage is so low. A Z3, a Prowler or a Corvette may have only been used for special occasions, for example. The Blazer may have been stored at a beach house. And the Town Car could've been preserved by someone who foresaw the death of the old-school full-size sedan.

This one doesn't make as much sense.

It's a 1999 Mercedes-Benz C230, the same '99 C230 that thousands of people all over Los Angeles leased back in the fall of 1998, except it has only 5,388 miles on it. This is a total time capsule of a vehicle that was never intended to be preserved, but preserved it was: The body is perfect, the interior is flawless, and yes, those are two leading zeroes on the odometer -- 005388.

Interestingly, this one is the bargain of the bunch: BBC Motorsports in Dallas, Texas, is offering it for just $7,900, which isn't much more expensive than what you'd pay for a '99 C230 with normal mileage.

1997 Plymouth Prowler (With Trailer): 4,505 Miles, $43,995

It's not so surprising to see an ultra-low-mileage Plymouth Prowler, since these were often purchased by speculators who thought their value would shoot through the roof someday, or at least by car collectors who don't have time to frequently drive all their toys.

More surprising, however, is that this one -- a 4,505-mile example offered by Georgia dealership Hayes Chrysler Dodge Jeep of Gainesville for $43,995 -- includes the purple-painted Plymouth Prowler trailer. Wasn't the whole point of the trailer to allow you to take long, leisurely road trips with all your stuff in tow?! Apparently not, since this one's Carfax report makes it seem like it's never been out of Georgia.

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This image is a stock photo and is not an exact representation of any vehicle offered for sale. Advertised vehicles of this model may have styling, trim levels, colors and optional equipment that differ from the stock photo.
6 Incredibly Low-Mileage Older Cars on Autotrader - Autotrader