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06 XLR - Did I make a mistake???


Jul 10, 2019
Indianapolis, IN
My XLR/V(s)
06 Black XLR w mods; 13' BMW M5
Soooooo I am definitely a car guy. My weekend warrior is my 2013 M5 and I just sold my 2003 corvette. I recently moved to Indianapolis from California and I am still getting used to the changes. Two weeks ago I could not stand to not have a convertible for the summer so I started looking for an XLR. Always loved them and I always wanted one. Who knew that I should have made sure the tail lights/headlights should be in good working order. I bought the car in Florida and it was delivered to me last Saturday. As it was coming of the truck I noticed the passenger side tail light was not working. I thought, well that sucks Ill just get another one. Ya I know....anyone reading this now is probably laughing right about now. So I started looking for the tail lights assembly and thought that these prices on ebay cant be correct. I started in on investigating for hours on blogs and others sites and now realize what an issue this is. Honestly, I really love the car but I would not have bought it if I had known what about some of these issues and the fact that most of this stuff has been discontinued. The car is currently in the shop getting mods done to it, but I did reach out to vettetronics to have them rebuild the assembly. I paid the man yesterday and will be sending the "Golden" package today. I wouldn't mind buying an extra assembly, but Ill have to wait for the right time.

Any how. Hopefully, I'll get to learn more about these cars from the knowledge of people on this site.
Welcome to the forum, Swanny1! I'm fairly new here as I just bought a 2005 XLR on Father's Day weekend [up near Indianapolis]. Didn't have it 3 days and found out the hard way about the trunk leak issues these cars have. Water gets in to the Stability Control and Folding Top modules and destroys them! Talk about two parts that are d*mn near impossible to find! And if you do, they want an exorbitant amount for them. Tip: Browse the forum for the Service Bulletins concerning this issue ASAP! Wish I had!
you picked the best repair shop to repair the taillight .He is not cheap but his work is well worth it. I have had him do several for me and they work after years. You can get them done cheaper on ebay but then you get less of a repair that may last 6 months or year tops.
Welcome to our world of XLR’s and the problems that canes with them ! I purchased my 05 in March of 2011 with 53k and now she (Roxy) has 101K love our car but don’t know how long I can afford to drive her! Sorry to hear you’re having problems, but hopefully you can get them worked out d can enjoy some top down driving! Good Luck

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if you want a set of new headlights there are a couple on ebay for 5500 each plus 500 core plus 125 shipping. HAHAHAH. so about 12,000$ for a pair of lights. Makes some of the other prices sound cheep.

Hey KevinJ62. So does this happen to the tops in the rain or when your getting your car washed?
So does this happen to the tops in the rain or when you get your car washed?
So does this happen to the tops in the rain or when you get your car washed?

It can happen anytime where water is present, but if you look under the car at the area of the pump box ( drivers side under trunk) you’ll see a black rubber hose that’s the drain hose/hole, make sure the hose hole is open and clean! It should be checked often... also invest in a battery tender to keep the battery charged when ever it’s not going to be driven for about a 2 week period or longer!

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Your car (& mine) has 13 year old rubber seals & gaskets, & those don improve with age. Typically the damage happens when they are just sitting in a soaking rain for a while, like while they’re waiting at a dealership for a new owner. If you’re driving, the water is going to roll off & away from the trunk. If you’re washing, don’t use a pressure washer, and you should be able to check & catch problems before they get bad (in fact, because I’m ridiculous & my XLR is just a weekend driver, I usually wash the top and trunk with rinseless wash just to keep the water risks to a minimum; everything else gets a normal hand wash).

Best place to keep these babies is in a garage. If you can’t do that, focus on keeping the roof and trunk covered with a car cover. Avoid parking with the nose of the car uphill if there’s a chance of rain. No need to freak out about a possible trunk leak, just use a little care & all will be well. Finally, I know at least one person on here figured out how to relocate the “brains” from the bucket in the back to the drivers side of the trunk.
Great information. Thank you. She will be garaged and hand washed. That red is awesome.
Thread title > 06 XLR - Did I make a mistake??? [you asked]

Swanny,,, Buying a aging low production, high dollar model car without going to see it up close and check it out in full.....was your mistake. One shouldn't buy a car over the internet by just looking at pictures and reading the prepared 'positive' description of the vehicle, as the 'seller' probably isn't going to confess to any present or past issues or problems. Regardless if buying from a used car dealer or private owner..... invest in a trip to go see the car in person.
If purchased,,,then drive it home. jmo

p z
Pure zen. You know the old saying about opinions. So thanks for yours. Im still ahead. Got a good deal on the car. Will cost me less to fix the issue than it would have to fly down and check it out and get nothing. Im Not sure if you know this or not but thousands of people buy cars on the internet. I would like to here from other members that have some good advise. So if your going to be a jerk and point out things that dont contrubite to the situation you should stick to Facebook. Thanks for your opinion, dont care.
the modules get wet from three arear. washing it ,rain and water from the bottom. Most likely water gets into it form the leaking seal that is discussed and a proper repair can easily be made per GM. When the trunk opens and its wet , a ton of water runs into the electrical area. almost right into the top module. We fabricated a protection from direct water on ours but be aware that the modules do get some heat. I am working on a container for the suspension module that should pretty much protect them. tight fit and it needs to breath also. Like others said check the rubber "lip" drain under the car. People buy cars in all sorts of ways and deal with the problems in all sorts of ways. Hope you dont find too many items over looked so that you can enjoy you new drive. Not that many "upgrades" out there so keep us posted on what you do and how it works out.
A big problem with many posters on this site is that they have a problem xxx and ask for help but then never end a post by letting people know what repaired it . Or making changes and not saying how it worked out.
I noticed the passenger side tail light was not working. I thought, well that sucks Ill just get another one. Ya I know....anyone reading this now is probably laughing right about now."

Swanny1, I had a similar experience when I bought my 2006 infrared. Everything worked, but it had a small crack in a taillight, and some hazing of the headlight covers. So, wanting my baby to be perfect, I trotted down to the Caddy dealership and requested these be changed out for new ones. They didn't exactly break out laughing, but I was quickly informed that I was just SOL. So here four years later, Red still has those imperfections, but I still love it.
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I remember we sold a new Buick to a customer years ago that had the smallest inperfection in the paint that I have ever seen anyone complain about. It was TINY . i mean. tiny. The color on his car had been giving us a fit to try and match so I kept putting him off for a warranty repair knowing the repair would not be as good as the imperfection. He called almost every day for 2 months. I assured him it would not get worse. Then about a week later the car came in on the hook with the whole front end knocked off. I told him we would do the repair while we had it in the shop and he no longer seemed concerned. Enjoy it. Its a car and will not improve over the years but the little things will be forgotten.
Hi, lots of luck with your new car. I bought an '05 in March and also didn't know about the lack of available headlights or taillights. I have other cars even older and wouldn't have that problem if I needed them so didn't think about it when I purchased the XLR.
A lot of postings on here keep me so nervous about owning or using this car but I love the car. Just curious but almost afraid to ask if you don't mind the cost of the repair ?
Again , best of luck with the new car. Thanks , Brad
Should have taken the headlights and tail lights off an XLR in Cali and shown up at the corvette release and tried to embarras GM... "I bought a $100,000 GM halo car 10 years ago and can't get it fixed" on the side.
Great information. Thank you. She will be garaged and hand washed. That red is awesome.
Swanny 1, My car in California sits outside and has been caught in rainstorms a few times. I always dry the trunk the minute it stops raining and I don't open the trunk til it's dry. I have also put a layer of plastic in the trunk over the opening to the motor etc. I don't know what that's worth but I have had no issues yet. I stopped using a car cover as it stained my paint.
John F.

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