Looking at purchasing a used GEM

Ive been looking at buying a used GEM (E4- four seater) for a few months just looking at the local ads and found one that sounds intriguing- but wanted to gauge if I should consider this or not based on all of your experience.

For Sale:
This was a project I started a while back and got distracted. It is a 2002 GEM Car with the below upgrades:
Upholstery: ASM (Sue from Fast and Loud) $1399
Ride 4 Fun 7.5 HP motor $900
Batteries $1158
Enkei Wheels and tires $1000
Side Mirrors $60.99
All 4 brakes shoes $77
Misc $500

This could be a really cool GEM car with a bit more work but I need the room, so this is a make an offer deal. New ones (like used at Jerry’s World over in Arlington are 16-18k new). The GEM car runs but needs more tuning/adjusting after putting in the motor and update controller. The electrical will have to be sorted to get the lights to work properly, but other than that, it runs down the road.

All serious offers will be entertained.

What should I look for/ask for specifically- and based on that, what would be a reasonable offer?

Note: I passed up on a E4 2004 one w/ rear storage/trunk area that had new batteries for $4400- and I kind of regret it, as it seemed like it was in great shape- but also want to stay around the $3k range if I can help it.

Heres the skinny’s

If you are competent and can do the work your self project cars can be a good deal. If you need to have a dealer service it rates in my area are over $100 an hour. Most dealers won’t touch a project car.

What your describing is a parts car that may be finished as a project or parted out for more money than it’s worth in it’s present state.

If you can get it for a $1000 or $1250 go for it.


After getting one that was sitting for awhile and not running I probably would not have done it again. Too many unknowns. The electrical stuff is the biggest issues I’ve run into. If I were to start over I would make sure it was running and drive it and check all the 12 volt stuff and make sure that was working. Just not worth the headach trying to troubleshoot these when you don’t know the history. Glad mine is finally working but it’s just taken a lot longer and more expensive than I had originally imagined.