The answer is simple: YES, YES, YES.
AUTOMOTIVE INDUSRTY STANDARDS
Dealers are required to inspect the cars before they sell them to the public. Industry standards mandate this result. They are in the best position and have the expertise to make these safety inspections. This aside, common sense mandates this result. Why would a dealer want to open himself to liability for selling a dangerous car when they had the chance to assure the car was safe? At a minimum they do not want a pissed-off customer with many mechanical complaints. Bad for business. Might cost the dealer money in repairs. Might get sued.
Also, the dealer has a process for acquiring cars from auctions, on trades and by wholesale to assure that the cars are not damaged. Most of the auctions have special designations for damaged cars. Green light means no problem while cars sold under the yellow and red light have problems, mechanical or otherwise. Manheim Auto Auction is the main source of cars for these dealerships and they have a detailed system of disclosure. Manheim actually offers an inspection service for those buying and selling cars at the auction to assure an open and honest marketplace.
The Law Office of Jonathan Rudnick is a Law Firm located in Red Bank/Middletown New Jersey and has significant experience in litigating against automotive dealerships.