1995-2005 AWD Cars?

amarythamaryth Member Posts: 3
edited June 2014 in General

I'm looking for an AWD car with a manual transmission. I want something cheap (under $4k), but reliable. A wagon/hatchback would be nice, but not required. I'm just looking for suggestions of cars that would fit these parameters. So far, the only cars that I know of are the Audi A4's and A6's. I like them, but I don't want to limit myself if there are other options available.

Thanks in advance!


  • ray80ray80 Member Posts: 1,655

    I think Manual tranny with AWD could be a tad hard to come by, Subie perhaps?

  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaMember Posts: 64,482

    Probably a Subaru at that price point is your most realistic option, and even then, you aren't going to get much of a car---something in the late 90s I would guess. Old Subarus are pretty sturdy, but be sure to have a mechanic check the 2.5L engine for bad head gaskets.

    You certainly don't want a $4000 old Audi.

  • amarythamaryth Member Posts: 3

    Thank you both for your responses.

    @Mr_Shiftright: Is there a reason that you wouldn't go with an Audi? I've seen some options for under $4k in very good condition, and I haven't heard anything bad about them yet. Although it's hard to find good reviews of 15-20 year old cars.

    Styling isn't my main focus here, but I really don't care for the Legacy. Which is why I'm trying to see what other options are out there. I will, however, buy a Legacy if that proves to be the most fitting for my needs.

  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaMember Posts: 64,482
    edited June 2014

    Older Audis are extremely maintenance intensive and repair costs are high, and hard to find. These older cars do not have a good reputation for reliability. If you can afford a budget of say $125/$150 per month to keep an old Audi on the road, (not including gas and insurance of course) then maybe okay---but if that sounds like a lot to you, then bear it in mind, because that's what it is going to cost you (presuming you have purchased a very good one to begin with).

    You could find an Outback for that price range. The styling is bland and not offensive.

  • steverstever Guest Posts: 52,457
    edited June 2014

    Just met a guy yesterday with a '99 Audi A6. He mentioned that it's about time to sell it; every time he has to take it to a mechanic it's a $1,000 bill. And his visits to the shop are increasing.

    Come to think of it, the '99 Quest I sold last month was getting about that bad.

    Also sold my '97 Outback last month (an automatic with 97,000 miles on it). It was very reliable but I'm glad I got rid of it before the head gaskets went (although my mechanic would do that job for $1,500).

  • amarythamaryth Member Posts: 3

    @Mr_Shiftright - Thanks for the advice. I hadn't heard that about the Audi's, but it doesn't surprise me. I could afford the maintenance, but it's just not worth that much to me. I'd rather have something more reliable. Maybe I'll have to consider some FWD vehicles to open up some more options. I really just want something that will be good in snow.

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