I think the average person's idea of what "good" or "excellent" is totally different than what people like us would think. I have seen ads that say "perfect" or "excellent" and gotten to the automobile and seen bald tires, oil under the car, doors that wouldn't open, AC that doesn't work... you name it. I really like when I ask all these questions before coming out, get an answer and then see the truth once I get there.
When I sell cars I try to be as upfront and honest about every little detail of the car. I am sure I have not sold cars before because of this. I have told people about oil leaks from valve cover gaskets, or things I may think aren't that big a deal and they seemed to loose interest. I would still rather be as honest as possible then have somebody think they have been misled.
People don't generally maintain cars. They drive them until something goes wrong then take it to a shop and cross their fingers. They think that is taking care of a car; replacing a part or two when it goes out. I had a friend once who's timing belt went out on him. It did some other damage to other things too (I don't remember what) and he was bellyaching about paying for the work. I said nicely, "You should pay attention to those timing belt intervals and you could keep the car maintained so it's not costing you so much money when it goes." He looked at me and said, "What do you think I'm doing now?" He thought he was maintaining it! So somebody could change the oil every 7k, and while it's in Jiffy Lube accept the upsell of extra coolant or an air filter and think that's maintenance.
I'd say most cars I go to look at are in pretty poor shape overall. But Iím holding it to a completely different standard then they are..
1994 C 280 117.5k, White (Good as new)
1997 Toyota Camry 149k Miles (Not so pretty anymore)
1990 190e 2.6 95k (Sold-Should not have)
1981 240d Stick ??? Miles...sold