Originally Posted by REX8
While I'm not discounting some reduction in value. Where do you get this "several thousand dollar" reduction from?
You think everyone who's had a fender replaced, etc. is taking a 4 figure resale hit? In the market place, you just don't lose that much resale for minor repairs professionally fixed, despite everyone saying you do. In this case, show any buyer a picture of that little bit of sheet metal, I'm sure it will be all but a non-issue.
It happened to me with my previous car. Back in 2009, I was the locomotive of a four car chain reaction accident in my '07 Civic. All it did was crack my bumper, no internal damage, cost all of $650 to repair.
In 9/10, when I went to trade my car in, it was worth roughly $10k, but they only offered me $8800 for it, explaining to me that what was basically a scratch ended up on the Carfax report and thus the car had diminished value. The problem with Carfax is that AFAIK, it doesn't distinguish between the severity of the damage. The car could have nearly been totalled, it could have the scratch that it did - Carfax isn't that descriptive, or at least it wasn't back then. They even went so far as to put it on a lift to check it out, as if they didn't believe me, and they said it was mint. However, the fact remained that it was on Carfax still led to me getting dinged on the trade.
In all fairness, it makes sense. More than likely, they would show the Carfox to a potential buyer, and the buyer would then use that as leverage to bargain down the price.
Moral to the story, always fight for diminished value from the insurance company. That was the first accident I had been in and I didn't know any better.
I vote for the complete replacement. You'll get a new car and you won't have to fight any diminished value claims.