By on November 2, 2012

photo source: Wikipedia

Statistics Canada reports that there are more than 26 million registered vehicles deemed fit to ply our 900,000km of Canadian roadway. Not bad for a group of souls who wear wool socks for six months of the year and feast on poutine. Transport Canada sets regulations for such things (the cars, not the poutine) and is thus charged with crashing, smashing, and otherwise ruining brand new vehicles with single digits on their odometers – all in the name of safety, of course.

The amount of detail available on the Transport Canada website is superb. Descriptions are there for the Test Plan of a Smart fortwo micro hybrid drive. An environmental analysis of the BMW 118d, curiously not for sale here or anywhere this side of the pond, is readable in all its oil burning glory.

What I didn’t know is that after the cars have been crashed, debris swept up, and crash test dummies put back on the shelf, Transport Canada sells the remains at an online auction like a black market physician going through the best of his cadavers. I thought they simply crushed them all. Nope.

May I interest you in a slightly bent 2011 Mazda Miata with five (five, not five thousand) kilometers for $4009.00? A 2011 Audi A3 with thirty-one kilometers for $2,266.00? At these prices, some judicious bidding and subsequent eBay hawking of non essential parts would bring the net investment down to LeMons territory! Alas, purchasers have to prove that his or her recycling firm is commercially recognized in Canada. Simply having four abandoned Mustangs on blocks in one’s front yard doesn’t count. I’ve tried.

It’s notable that they also auction off Euro-specific cars that are not registerable in Canada, with the stipulation that the car be hightailed out of the Colonies upon purchase. The BMW 118d mentioned above auctioned for $11,188.00 in August. Peugeots and Renaults as Canadian Government Crown Assets? Mon dieu!

Matthew buys, sells, repairs, & races cars. He is fond of making money and offering loud opinions. He can be found on Twitter @matthewkguy

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21 Comments on “I’m No Dummy...”


  • avatar
    ott

    Makes me proud to be a Canadian… It makes good financial sense to sell the damaged test vehicles for parts, rather than just crush them. Why throw money away? Does anyone know how the NHTSA disposes of their crashed testers?

    • 0 avatar
      Lynchenstein

      I believe NHTSA sells them to folks living in Detroit where they are required to be driven (unaltered) for a period of no less than fifteen years. This is, of course, just a guess based on my first-hand observations of a good deal of the vehicles in and around Detroit.

  • avatar

    Adrien Belew produced the Crash test Dummies. FYI.
    I’m out.

  • avatar
    markholli

    How much you wanna bet that half of those cars end up back on the road within a year? Obviously not in Canada, as the website specifies that the vehicles may only be sold for parts…in Canada…

    Unscrupulous recycler buys a car, sells it to a non-Canadian hack operation, slap some new fenders on it, maybe a little frame straightening (if you’re lucky), fresh coat of paint. Voila!

  • avatar
    Pch101

    “Transport Canada sets regulations for such things (the cars, not the poutine)”

    That would explain why poutine is as nasty as it is. A government that cared about the welfare and decency of its people would not allow such a thing to exist.

  • avatar
    Darkhorse

    Poutine? Is that the same as pountang?

  • avatar
    Ted Grant

    No but both can hurt you….All things in moderation…

  • avatar
    blowfish

    feast on poutine

    not sure if that many white folks residing outside of the froglands eat that.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Poutine

    i enjoy other french food IE baked onion soup.

    if u really look forward into having a triple bypass before u’re 45 then the poutine is the best thing for u.

  • avatar
    MrWhopee

    If Transport Canada’s crash test is pretty much like other crash tests (IIHS’s test for example), then I wouldn’t say the leftover is “slightly bent”. It’s probably should be regarded as parts car, if not whole scrap. Unless it’s more like Consumer Report’s 5 mph bumper tests…

  • avatar
    brettc

    Thanks for the reminder about that site. There was a diesel Honda Accord listed on there at one point. Although I’d rather have that 118d. Too bad owning such a rare car would probably be a giant PITA in terms of parts availability!

    As for Poutine, it’s an acquired taste. And definitely a good way to take advantage of Canada’s evil commie healthcare. (I can say that, I’m Canadian).

  • avatar
    Boff

    Why Canada has their own regime for crash testing (and fuel ecomony testing) is simply beyond me. We should just adopt whatever standards the Americans develop. I’d even be willing to kick a few of my tax dollars south to help out y’all.


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