Can You Sell a “Reconstructed Car” in Pennsylvania

Can You Sell a Reconstructed Car in Pennsylvania cover photo

You know what they say, one man’s trash is another man’s treasure. This applies to reconstructed (or R Title) cars as well — although a reconstructed car is hardly trash. However, selling and buying reconstructed cars is a bit different from regular used cars.

Let’s talk about how to sell reconstructed cars in Pennsylvania.

What is a Reconstructed Car?

A reconstructed car is simply a vehicle that had once been declared totaled by an insurance company due to severe damage. 

The vehicle in question was then rebuilt to safely drivable condition, inspected, and approved by a DMV’s compliance examiner. From there, the vehicle can legally be re-registered, insured, and taken on the road again — with a rebuilt title.

Reconstructed vs Salvage Cars

mechanic rebuilding a car engine

Reconstructed and salvage cars aren’t the same thing, although they’re very similar. When you have a salvage car, you have a car that:

  • Has been severely damaged and declared totaled
  • Is (most likely) inoperable or unable to pass a state safety inspection
  • Is often sold as-is, with a salvage title, making it worth 55%-70% less than if it were to have a clean title

As stated above,
a reconstructed car is a car that has been previously totaled but repaired to the point of being roadworthy, safe, and usually in acceptable physical condition. However, having a rebuilt title also means that the car loses up to 50% of its value, regardless of the repairs.

Laws for Selling Reconstructed Cars in Pennsylvania

Selling a car with a rebuilt title or R Title is slightly different from selling salvage cars in Pennsylvania. To sell reconstructed cars in Pennsylvania, here’s what you’ll need to do:

Starting with obtaining a salvage title if you don’t already have one:

From there, you’ll need to make the necessary repairs on the vehicle keeping the following in mind:

  • You’ll need to keep thorough records and receipts for all parts and repairs 
  • It’s a good idea to take photos throughout the process
  • Once the repairs are done, you must take the vehicle in for an enhanced safety inspection at the nearest DMV-approved PennDOT inspection station. This should only cost you about $40
  • Make sure you bring all receipts and documentation of the repairs to the inspection station as the inspector will need to verify that all parts were purchased legally
buffing out imperfections of black car
rebuilt car getting car wash

Once your vehicle has passed the enhanced safety inspection, you’ll need to apply for a rebuilt title. You’ll need the following documentation:

  • The vehicle’s salvage title — the original, NOT copy
  • Application for Reconstructed Vehicle, Specially Constructed Vehicle, Collectible, Modified, Flood, Recovered Theft Vehicles, and Street Rods (Form MV-426B) — completed
  • Photos of the front, back, and sides of the vehicle
  • $51 for the rebuilt title registration fee
  • You’ll need to mail these documents to your local PennDOT address

Once you receive your rebuilt title, the car is ready to sell as you would a regular used car. The only caveat is that you’ll need to disclose to potential buyers that the car is rebuilt and provide them with the vehicle history report and proof of repairs and safety.

If you plan to sell a vehicle in Pennsylvania, let us help you. Learn more about how Motobyo’s car-selling process works today!