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Buying an Older Civic



  • patpat Posts: 10,421
    Congrats on your new ride. Hope everything works out with it.
  • Thanks! So far so good, I hope of course that it doesn't break down on me right away. There are some spots on the surface, faded paint spots and I bought some wax today but that didn't clear it up. The manual said I could go to Honda & get exact match paint. Should I try this, or is there a board for this sort of thing?
  • patpat Posts: 10,421
    You might find some advice in the Civic Care & Maintenance discussion - check it out.
  • kwahrapskwahraps Posts: 3
    Greetings all.

    Just purchased an '02 Civic LX 2D Coupe at a Honda dealership.

    48,000 miles
    KBB value of about $12,200
    Certified Honda price at the dealer was $12,700.

    Clearance price : $9,999
    Trade in ('94 Mercury Sable, 100K miles) : $750
    Tax and Tags : $700

    So, basically I closed the deal on the car for just under $10k. Carfax states that the car had one owner, was leased for 3 years, appears to be normal mileage for that span, and was purchased by the dealership in December '06. After failing to sell at $12,700, they issued the clearance price and I felt I needed to jump on it.

    Our salesman stated that the '02-'04 Civic LX lines are basically identical. Anyone have opinions on this statement? And should I have any pause for concern on this deal? Thank you for your time.
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,621
    Actually the Civic got a refresh for 2004, so there are some differences between the 2003 and 2004 models. 2001-3 models were essentially the same, with some small tweaks starting in 2002.
  • hello!
    i was hoping that someone out there may be able to give me some much needed & appreciated advice... i've been looking for what seems to be an eternity for a reasonably priced used honda for use as my primary means of transportation and have finally found one. it's a '94 civic lx with 111,000 miles, and the person selling it is asking $2,000 for it. i test drove it, without incident, and everything seems to be in order. the inspection is good until 1/08, and i was told the only thing it had needed at the time of the inspection was new wiper blades. the seller also informed me that the tires and brakes had been replaced recently and that they knew of no problems the car may have. i haven't gotten a vin# yet with which to get a carfax report, and i'm not sure if the timing belt is the original or had been replaced around the 100k mile point. aside from that, could someone advise me as to whether or not this is a fair price? also, should the timing belt be original, must i replace it right away if i purchase it? if so, can this be used as leverage in order to lower the price the seller was asking? also, is the transmission something i need to worry about? (it's an automatic). thanks in advance for any advice/ information y'all could give me! p.s. - kbb private party value in fair condition is $2630. thanks!!!
  • patpat Posts: 10,421
    While you're waiting for some input here, I suggest you ask the value of the car over in the Real-World Trade-In discussion. Be sure to follow the format in red over the post box.

    You can also check the TMV pricing right here: 1994 Honda Civic LX. For my zip code, it says the TMV pricing for a private party sale is $1895. That makes me think $2000 is too high with that mileage, but run the numbers and see what you get.

    Welcome to CarSpace! :)
  • elwood4elwood4 Posts: 3
    I wanted a honda certified 2004 civic sedan,
    but havent been able to find one (yet).

    Is it possible to convince a dealer to
    Honda certify a vehicle?

    I'm a newbie car buyer and was hoping a
    Honda certified vehicle would take some of the pain out of the buying process.

    The one I am looking at on Wednesday has only
    35K miles, auto transmission,
    but NOT power windows/locks

    (I didnt know you could still get cars without
    power windows?!)

    How much would an extended warranty
    cost for something like that?

    Any help appreciated, I feel woefully
    inexperienced in car buying!
  • Am buying a 2005 Honda Civic LX 4dr. Sedan Nighthawk Pearl this week - about 26,500 miles on it from a NY Honda dealer
    Total is 11,290 - with taxes. 10,900 for the car.

    Looked at carfax report online - paid for it myself. Looks clean.

    Is this a good deal?

    Also - this car is not certified.

    They said they can tell me how much to get it certified. And how much an extended warranty would be if I didn't get it certified.

    What is a good amount to pay for certification? Would $1000 be about right? I just don't want to overpay. And I am on a budget.
  • I'm looking at buying a 2000 Honda Civic. It is in unbelievable condition (only 35,000 miles!), but it was involved in an accident in 2001. The seller showed me the repair receipt, and one of the items listed was "Frame/Unibody Repair and Setup" at a cost of $55.00. Is that anything to be concerned about? I got a Carfax report on it, and the accident is listed but under "Structural/Frame Damage Check" it says "no issues reported". I would guess that any frame damage would cost more than $55.00 to repair, wouldn't it? The entire repair bill came to about $1,200 and most of that was to repair the front bumper and headlight.

    Thanks for any advice!
  • kenlwkenlw Posts: 190
    unibody cars like the Civic (and most cars) are usually set on the frame fixture to check for any misalignment after a wreck. It doesn't mean any damage was found (evidenced by the "no issues reported" statement), just that it was set on the fixture (looks like a large car cradle) to be checked. It takes time to do this, hence the $55 charge.

    If the "frame" (it really doesn't have a frame per se) was damaged the repair bill would have been a lot more than $1200.
  • Thanks so much for your reply! I figured it was something like that. I appreciate the info.
  • I recently bought a 2005 Subaru Legacy GT limited for a good price (I think), $12K. The dealer wanted to give me $3000 for my 2002 Honda Civic EX (94K miles, good conditions, have records). I has done research in advance and saw trade values of anywhere from $5K to $6.5K. We could not come to agreement so I made it easy and did not trade the car. I'm now in the position of trying to sell it privately. Research indicated the private party price to be in the $5500 - $7500 range. I'm asking $6500, have placed the car on craigslist and autotrader. One and a half weeks have gone by without one hit. Am I really being that unreasonable with the price? Fortunately, I don't need to sell it.
  • crazyflycrazyfly Posts: 61
    Your price is reasonable, its that we are in down economy and people are not buying and banks are not lending. If you can hang on to the car then definitely do but keep your ad fresh, to the point, and with pictures. I sold my older civic on Craigslist not too long ago and all interested parties mentioned they replied becasue of pics and details. All they wanted to know was already there but still to the point. I hope this helps.
  • tyhd91tyhd91 Posts: 10
    used 2006 Honda Civic EX automatic
    miles: 28,180
    price: $13,977
    condition: engine and tires are a little bit dirty but thats about it.
    options: air conditioning, am/fm, sunroof, body side moldings, cd player, power windows, power locks, power windows

    does this sound like a good price?
  • crazyflycrazyfly Posts: 61
    Its a good price ............. but only if the economy wasn't down and car companies weren't selling new vehicles at big discounts. A brand new 2009 civic EX sells for $16.5k so the price difference between a 3 year old civic with 30K miles and a new one is only $2,500.

    If you are dropping 14k on a car, i would think another 2.5k to get a brand new is worth it. Also, if you are going to finance the car, the used car will finance at a higher interest rate (about 6.5%) but a new car financed by honda at 2.9% On a 4 year (48 month) loan that means a used car will cost $1700 more in interest. If you factor in the higher cost of loan/financing of the used car, a new 2009 Civic EX will cost you only $800 more than what you are going to pay for a 3 year old used car.

    The economy is improving (finally) so the deals on new civics will not last long, as honda is famous for *not* offering special deals. If you are in the market to buy a used car for $14k you can easily get a new one for just a little more. A year from now, these low-low prices on new civics will probably be gone. If I were you, I would go with a new Civic.
  • trimomtrimom Posts: 1
    Should I be concerned about purchasing a 2004 civic ex in which records show the fuel system was replaced in 2008 at 65,000m. I am new to the used car market and am a bit wary of making this purchase.
  • blahboyblahboy Posts: 2
    I'm looking to buy something affordable and reliable like a Honda Civic or Toyota Camry. I don't really care about looks or cool features. I just want something that's reliable and gets me from A to B.

    I want something cheap (maybe $2k-4k?), but not something I'll be paying for a bunch of repairs on.

    What sort of miles should I be looking for to get a good price w/o having to put much repair/maintenance money into it for about a year? One friend told me 100k-150k. Any recommendations on other types of cars to consider?

  • uga91uga91 Metro AtlantaPosts: 1,065
    Hello. I have a cousin who has had a 1994 EX Sedan since new. She's going to break down and buy a new Honda this fall and she's willing to sell it to me for $1000 because she doesn't want to fool with trying to sell it in the paper or haggle with a trade-in on a 15 year old car.

    This car has about 45,000 miles on it and--knowing her--it has probably never been driven over 55 mph. It's been dealer maintained and the upholstery almost looks new--especially in the back seat. My question is, what are some issues that may pop up with a car this old? My daughter is almost 13 and I'm thinking I may buy it, maybe drive it some the next couple of years and then let her learn how to drive on it/be her first car. My only fear is that by the time she turns 16, it'll be 18 years old. At the current mileage, I would think the car has about 100,000 miles left in it. I know it's old, but it has sunroof, air, automatic, power windows, etc. Those are some nice features for a first car. Thoughts?
  • crazyflycrazyfly Posts: 61

    Really, do not let this car go. It is one of the very solid, well balanced civics ever made that requires almost minimal maintenance. The outer body is made of thick sheet metal, not the cheap thin metal that current civics are made of.

    I owned this generation civic and am VERY happy with the ownership experience. Sold it at 172k miles a little over a year ago so I feel confident to tell you that nothing much goes wrong with his car. No transmission trouble, no fluid leaks, nothing!! Depending on where you live, the temperature extremes, and whether the car was parked in garage or out in the open, some rubber seals may give trouble, but all work is very inexpensive. Mostly it requires nothing more than regular maintenance items. Once you get the civic, go to and create your Honda Ownerlink account. Then follow the maintenance guidelines and intervals listed there. Your major expense is going to be timing belt change (90k), and then at 150k.

    If you decide against owning this car, you will be amazed at how many people would love to buy it. People who know civics love this generation model. I sold my civic well over the blue-book value within 10 hrs of listing it for sale. And I had 27 people interested in buying it!! I hope you get to keep and enjoy this car.
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