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Comments

  • cwcranecwcrane Posts: 15
    Wow! It's wonderful to come here and see so many thoughtful responses! Thank you all for taking the time to give your opinion, I truly appreciate the feedback - especially since I'm still trying to learn how to "wheel n' deal." Unfortunately, I bought the del Sol many years ago for about $2k more than what it was worth. Since then, I vowed never to buy another car again! Well, it appears that I have to break that promise. At least the del Sol has been paid off for several years and I've managed to save the extra money.

    Now to the cars...

    1. I really enjoyed the I35. The salesman said that it had the Maxima engine, but that's about all they share in common. It seemed like a fairly decent sized car. If I can get the price to come down, I believe this could be a keeper.

    2. The Lincoln, acoording to my notes, has a 3.0 V6. Nice car, but the reliability issues may scare me off.

    3. The GS300 was my favorite of the bunch, but it seems a little expensive for a 4 year old car. Plus, the salesman was pushy, telling me that this is probably the best deal on a low-mileage GS that I'd be able to find in Florida. He said many other dealerships will sell the same car for $28k-$30k. I asked him why he doesn't sell it for that much and he told me that the dealership doesn't want customers haggling over the prices. In other words, if I want the GS300 I have to pay the asking price. Price too high? And high maintenance? And no, this wasn't a certified Lexus. Maybe I'd better stay away.

    4. 2004 Maxima. I also really liked this car. Maybe because it's the new model? I'm just worried that there might be problems with the car later down the road since it is the new model. I think I'll stay away. But this car was loaded. Leather, heated seats, even a very odd-looking, slender sunroof (if that's what you call it).

    5. 2002 Maxima. I have this written down as a GXE model. I do remember that there was a cloth interior when I drove it. It didn't seem to have very many options (thus the low asking price, according to the dealer). Probably would have been my favorite if it had leather, heated seats, etc.

    6. Acura 3.2 CL. What was I thinking? It is expensive and not very practical. I just liked driving the car. Plus the navigation was fun to use. This car is definitely out of consideration now.

    7. IS300. Another slightly impractical car. It was cramped inside. But the driver seat moved far enough back so I did fit comfortably. It's a sharp car, but I'm worried that the styling might be too faddish. I have the feeling that this is a car I'd regret buying in 3 years.

    8. GS430. Yes, the V8 is what attracted my attention. But with everyone's comments, I doubt that this car would be worth the money. It is nice, but maybe not nice enough with high maintenance costs, insurance premiums, higher cost.

    9. Audi. This car was an amazing ride. The price did seem a little high though. Too bad it has such questionable reliability. This could have been a favorite.

    By the way, one of the salesman has called me to let me know that a 2002 Audi A6 Quattro 6cyl. is in. He said that it has 39k miles and asking price is $22970. Is the A6 in the same boat as the A4?

    I have also been offered a 2003 Infiniti G35 with 40k miles for $19,999. I drove one of these as a loaner car last year (wife's Infiniti was getting serviced) and was pleasantly surprised. Is this car worth looking into? Another new model car that makes me hesitate.

    As far as looking into a MB E320, I haven't even considered an MB or BMW. I figured those cars would be way out of my price range. Plus I've heard from people that their reliability stinks. However, some old friends up in NY have a couple classic MB's that have been perfect cars over the years. I believe one of the cars has been registered in the "Million Mile Club" (name?). That's gotta say something about the quality of the cars, yes?

    Okay, so I get the feeling that I need to look at I35s and loaded Maximas, both in the upper teens for 2002-2004 models with low to average mileage. Are there any other cars I need to look into? How about Acura 3.2 TLs? I haven't driven one of those yet. The lot has a 2003 3.2 TL with 30k miles for $18,988. Should this be a consideration?

    One final car that has been mentioned by the dealer: a 2001 Infiniti I30 with 38k miles, asking price is $15,988. How about this?

    Again, everyone's comments and opinions are invaluable to my research. It's been very difficult trying to communicate with the salesmen/women, since I feel that they are more concerned about the sale than what is best for me.

    By the way, does anyone have tips on haggling over the price? Only one of the dealerships I visited wouldn't be willing to come down on the price, but the others wanted to play the price game. I'm such a terrible megotiator!
  • schmobesschmobes Posts: 1
    I am looking for a used car, but I want to buy something reliable without spending a TON (need to keep it around $9000). We currently own a 1998 cutlass--the intake manifold gasket has gone 3 times in the last year, the ABS hub has gone on both sides in the front, the alternator went (which really isn't a big or abnormal deal), the front spring broke (sending the spring into my BRAND new, less than 24 hours old tire), the suspension bearing plate had to be replaced, the motor for the drivers window went, and the belt pulley went. We thought we just had a lemon, so we were looking at Malibus, but I have read they actually often have some of these same problems (especially intake manifold). So, I am a little concerned about getting into the same bind I am in now. I have considered camrys and accords, but they are a bit more expensive. As are subarus. Any suggestions?

    TIA
  • qbrozenqbrozen Posts: 26,207
    i was thinking the same thing. ;)

    '10 Equinox LS; '08 Charger R/T Daytona; '67 Coronet R/T; '14 Town&Country Limited; '18 BMW X2. 49-car history and counting!

  • qbrozenqbrozen Posts: 26,207
    Have that G35 checked out. Price seems low to me... but, then again, 40K miles is fairly high. In any case, if it checks out and no accidents, etc, I think this would be a great choice!

    I hated the I30 I drove. WAY too soft of a ride and way too uninspiring.

    I feel the same way about Benzes as you. Some folks say stay away, but the long history of reliability is a hard thing to shake off. I was fairly close to buying one, but, in the end, I kept my volvo.

    Well, if that '02 Max wasn't loaded, scratch it from the list. As for the '04, personally, I really dislike the new style. Very awkward inside and out. Had a rental for a couple of weeks and I never found it comfortable.

    Ah, the A6. Here is another one I considered to replace the trusty Volvo. I liked it, but wasn't blown away by the luxury aspect. I was expecting so much more. I think I would worry about repairs if I were you, though. From the little that I know, I believe a great deal of Audi complaints are electrical in nature, so I'm sure it would apply to all models in their lineup. But don't take my word for it.

    I was going to suggest TL before, but felt you probably couldn't get a decent one for the right money. That $19K sounds WAY low for that car to me. I mean, yeah, its the previous body style, but still a heck of a car and nice low miles... again, have it checked out thoroughly.

    So, i'd be after the G35 first, then the TL. Like I said, both seem low, though.

    '10 Equinox LS; '08 Charger R/T Daytona; '67 Coronet R/T; '14 Town&Country Limited; '18 BMW X2. 49-car history and counting!

  • basscadetbasscadet Posts: 146
    The Audi is clearly the nicest car of the bunch but also the one that might be the most expensive to maintain.

    Look for another 02 Maxima that has leather seats, if that is what you want. I'd stay far away from the Lincoln LS. The Lexus are boring cars, might as well get a loaded Toyota Camry. IS300 is a nice car, but gas mileage isn't great with its sporty inline 6.
  • kyfdxkyfdx Posts: 130,684
    I like the TL or the G35...

    I forgot about the Maxima being the "new" model... I personally don't like them, but that is a lot of car, and if the '02 is a GXE, then no sale on that one, either.. In this price range, you need leather and a moonroof, or it might be sale-proof when you try to get rid of it..

    The I35 is a nice car... it is virtually a clone of the old Maxima, though.. not just the engine... If you get one of these, bargain hard.. they tend to be pretty cheap as used cars, so don't overpay..

    That TL looks like a good deal..

    regards,
    kyfdx

    Did you get a good deal? Be sure to come back and share!

    Edmunds Moderator

  • bhmr59bhmr59 Posts: 1,601
    With the price range you are considering, do yourself a favor and look at a NEW Hyundai Sonata. This is how I came to buy a new '05 Sonata in April. Apparently the dealers aren't doing much discounting on the new '06 yet, but you should be able to get the top of the line, loaded for abut $24K + tax. There should be new '05's around. I paid $16,700 for the '05 GLS SV + tax, etc. Out the the door was $17,826. Forget about the Hyundai's of years ago. The newer ones are well built, have a super warranty, are loaded with features and a great price. The 05's have a $1250 rebate on the GLS SV and $1750 on all other trims.

    Take a look. If you don't like it, at least you will have seen what is available in a new car in the price range you're looking at.
  • puncherpuncher Posts: 12
    Howdy Folks

    I have always wondered what the rate of depreciation is on a new car.
    I'm sure someone must have done a study on the subject.
    If anyone knows where that info might be or would like to venture a guess. It would be greatly, greatly apresheated. I know that the rate would be different from car to car or type to type. But i'm just hoping to get a rough idea.
    Thanks Dudes
    Puncher
  • jasmith52jasmith52 Posts: 460
    All cars are different... Your Mileage May Vary...

    I'll ballpark Domestic cars at around 15-20% Double that the first year.
    In other words Take what you paid for the car, deduct 30-40 percent the first year. Then take that balance and deduct 15-20 percent the next year. Then take that balance and deduct 15-20 percent the next year. And so on.

    If you don't sell the car yourself deduct another $1000-2000 for the dealership trade tax.

    If you are driving Toyotas and Hondas (possibly Nissan) Try the above approach with a 10-15 percent depreciation model.

    All cars are different... Your Mileage May Vary...

    So based on the above depreciation models one can make the observation that Domestic cars just might be a screaming deal if you buy them used after one year.
    Toyotas and Hondas might best be bought new as they don't depreciate too fast.
  • mpp2mpp2 Posts: 97
    How about a 2002 Honda Accord EX V6?
  • rroyce10rroyce10 Posts: 9,359
    ....... Buy anything but a Hyundai/Kia ............. (did somebody say "anything" ..?)

    Terry.
  • whats so bad about a Hyundai?
  • rroyce10rroyce10 Posts: 9,359
    ........ There is just a huge market of vehicles out there right now .. the vast majority of these have a proven track record for longevity and long term use .... unfortunately Hyun/Kia has been here for over 10 years and their track record has been very negative, to say the least ... so for an extra $10/$20 dollars a month why take the risk ...?

    Terry.
  • asafonovasafonov MinneapolisPosts: 409
    4. 2004 Maxima. I also really liked this car. Maybe because it's the new model? I'm just worried that there might be problems with the car later down the road since it is the new model. I think I'll stay away. But this car was loaded. Leather, heated seats, even a very odd-looking, slender sunroof (if that's what you call it).

    Was 2004 the first year when Maximas were made in Nissan's Tennessee factory? Now that place churned out reliable Sentras and Altimas for more than 20 years, but I, too, would be a little worried about production move bugs. Nissan does not have a stellar reliability record with new U.S. production vehicles (Titan, Armada), from what I read on these board.

    That low-mileage 2003 TL with the asking price of 19k sounds like a decent deal. Did you mention you did not consider Hondas? If you drive the TL and like it, you may want to reconsider and try a new EXV6 Accord. It should be in the price range you have identified. Not the prettiest midsize sedan, though, even with a freshened back...
  • jaserbjaserb Posts: 858
    I wouldn't think twice about buying ANY Nissan built in the Smyrna, TN plant, new style or not. The quality there has been extremely high for a long time. The problem vehicles for '04 - Titan, Armada, Quest, and QX56 - were all built in the brand new Canton, MS plant. This plant had an entirely new workforce, and since it is the first auto plant in that part of the country the vast majority had no auto manufacturing experience. Supposedly, Nissan has smoothed out those bumps. I wouldn't avoid an '04 Max based on the Canton problems. I'd avoid them because they're ugly. :P

    -Jason
  • cwcranecwcrane Posts: 15
    Oh no, I couldn't get the previous-style Accord. Too many people have them! They don't do much for me. Plus, I just found out about a serious transmission flaw that has plagued the Accord, TL, and CL over the past several years. This is a tremendous concern. Sadly, I probably won't consider the TL any longer based on this information. I'll need to do some further research on this, but peace of mind is extremely important.
  • cwcranecwcrane Posts: 15
    The newer Hyundais are very intriguing, but I still remain leery about the company because of the Excels from the late 80's and early 90's. Sadly, this company still has a stigma attached to it. True, I can get a brand-new Hyundai that is comparably equipped as a loaded Honda/Nissan, but it's still a Hyundai. See? It would be the same if a well-engineered Yugo was brought back. If might very well be a fantastic car at a great price, but it has a notorious history that tarnishes its image. If it were a "Toyota" Sonata, then I might give that very same car a serious consideration.
  • michaellnomichaellno Posts: 4,300
    My folks, who have owned 3 Toyotas dating back to 1973 (a '73 Corona, an '84 Celica and a '91 Camry) bought a Hyundai Sonata two years ago - first new car for them since the Corona. They are more than happy with it. Mom had her heart set on another Camry, but Dad told her about the warranty and the fact that they could get a V6 Sonata for about the same price as a 4-cyl Camry. Mom was sold.

    Of course, two years later and the car has, I think, 7K on it....

    From what I've heard, the new Sonata gives the CamCord a very serious run for its money, even when the price and warranty differences are not factored into the equation.
  • suydamsuydam Posts: 4,139
    But the poster wasn't looking at Camcords! Anyone who is looking at Acuras, Maximas, and Lexus is not going to be interested in a Hyundai (actually, neither are most Camry or Accord owners).
    '14 Buick Encore Convenience
    '17 Chevy Volt Premiere
  • michaellnomichaellno Posts: 4,300
    ... to talk him into a Sonata.

    It was a response to his comment regarding Hyundai in general; I simply cited a personal example of someone who used to drive Toyotas and then happily switched over to a Hyundai.

    My .02 would be to find a used I30 or I35 ... they seem to depreciate faster than the Maximas, though I don't know why.
  • cwcranecwcrane Posts: 15
    I read the below article on bankrate.com regarding ex-police cars being used as private cars. This is interesting, because it's certainly something I've never considered. What do you guys think about making a relatively small investment with buying one of these monstrous cars? I know you'll sacrifice some amenities, but you get heavy-duty, reliability, and performance in return. Or do you? If these cars are built to last 500k miles and have only 100k miles on them, then they're still young cars, right? Hmm...

    bankrate.com ex-police car article

    I've found a couple sites below that sell these cars. It looks like they refurbish them and sell the cars at a profit. I'd definitely consider buying one of these cars in addition to, maybe, a G35 (or the like). I could switch cars out, to keep the miles down on the nicer car. I also like that idea of driving on the highway and having people think I'm an unmarked cop cruiser! But if I ever broke down, who would pull over to help?

    Emergency Remarketing Corporation website

    GSPS website
  • cwcranecwcrane Posts: 15
    Mathias,

    I read your commentary on car makes and models (on the Autokauf page) and thought it was hysterical! So, if I wanted to own an Audi, it's best that I develop a strong love for the car, or I may end up pushing it off a cliff? You're right, I wouldn't be accustomed to $1000+ tune-ups, nor would I enjoy seeing my mechanic every week because some obscure wire in the trunk lid shorted-out and left my wundercar inoperable.

    Will you be completing this jocular editorial anytime soon? I see you haven't updated it since Nov '03. That's too bad...

    -Christian
  • jlawrence01jlawrence01 Posts: 1,828
    I am not an expert on this topic. However, I do attend three or four municipal auctions in the Chicagoland area each year so I am relatively familiar with the process and the amounts realized by the municipalities in the auctions.

    First, when you buy a police car, you are generally buying a Ford Crown Victoria Police Interceptor. They have had 80%+ of the market and are pretty decent cars ... if they have been retrofitted with the proper equipment. That is, the pre 2002 models had a significant safety flaw whereby the gas tank could be punctured in a rear-end collision of any significance. This is readily fixed by a dealer but if you don't know about it, and it hasn't been retrofitted, it is not a safe car.

    Second, when you buy a police car, you are NOT getting an aesthetically pleasing car for a number of reasons:

    -Holes are cut into the body to mount the police lights.
    -The headliner is completely cut up to put in additional lights and electronics.
    - The police package is generally not attractive - cloth front bucket seats, vinyl backseats, no carpeting in the vehicle, no armrests.
    -Holes where the bulkhead is mounted.
    -Generally the cars have been driven 24/7 and not always well taken care of. Most of the local municipalities keep up the cars but the city of Chicago cars look like they are driven to hell and back.
    - Police vehicles tend to have their share of body damage arund the bumpers and doors.

    Some municipalities will paint and recondition the cars. Most just remove the police logos and the police equipment.

    Third, police cars are not always such a great bargain. In the Chicagoland area, most cab companies buy the Crown Vics for taxi use. You are competing with some very deep pockets.

    Fourth, you do not get to drive the vehicles. All sales are "as is, where is" you can start up the car but you cannot move it. If you move a car in the lot, you generally will be met by one of the local police officers. And you'll be escorted .. elsewhere.

    Fifth, if you think that you are going to get a lot of respect driving a cop car, you are all wet. One of our engineering interns has a Caprice and three speeding tickets in the past years. The cops don't give you a break.

    For the record, looking at the websites, I am less than wowwed with the prices. I can get an Impala LS 2003 with 50k from a corporate fleet for the price that they are selling the 2001 police version with 80k.

    n Chicagoland, the 2003 Police Impalas generally bring $4600-4800 with 65-75k miles. The 2003 Crown Vics bring $5-9k depending on condition with 60-80k miles.
    The few Caprices are all over the place as most are 10+ years old and in various condition.
  • steine13steine13 Posts: 2,715
    Hiya JL,
    I had a feeling you'd have something to say on the subject :-)

    FWIW, if you want a police cruiser, you might want to get it in MI. My buddy Andre tells me that he has people coming from as far away as UT to get these from him... he says MI is the cheap-car capital of the US; that's probably true for domestics.

    Anyway, these puppies go through the Lansing auction for $2,5-2,800 every month, basically, and there's plenty of them at UC dealerships all over town. Andre typically gets $4 for them on ebay, and will probably let them go cheaper than that. They are a sort-of-OK blue color, and they have sealed holes in the roof.
    I should mention they're typically '01 to '03s with ~90k on them.

    They also stick out half a foot if I were to park one in my garage, so I'm not interested, but they are an interesting buy...
    Yeah, that's it, they're "interesting".

    Can't even mount a roof rack on these darned things; nobody makes one.

    -Mathias
  • jlawrence01jlawrence01 Posts: 1,828
    I might have something to say on the issue (g) ... but *I* wait for a respectable hour to post it (g).

    Seriously, you can probably jerry rig a small ladder rack from them. If you are really interested, I could follow up on that as several of my employees are experts at mounting ladder racks.

    I would strongly agree that the Detroit area is a great price to buy a domestic used car. A lot of the dealerships in Dearborn, etc. buy a boatload of fleet and other program cars. However, my mechanic/car inspector lives in Cincinnati so that is where I generally buy my vehicles.
  • isellhondasisellhondas Issaquah WashingtonPosts: 20,225
    Funny how things get overblown on the internet.

    A ***few*** Hondas and Acuras had transmission problems. the number I keep hearing is around 2% were affected. They weren't "plagued" with problems. Honda stepped up to the plate and extended the warranty on the ones with troubles to 100,000 miles.

    As far as Hyundai. Even assuming they have improved as of late, they still suffer from horrendous resale value. The money you "save" upfront, you will lose and much more when you sell it.

    If a person likes these cars, a year old one would be a good value.
  • steine13steine13 Posts: 2,715
    ".. but *I* wait for a respectable hour to post it (g). "

    It was 11:15 MESZ (central european daylight-savings time).
    It's 72 and partly cloudy... as opposed to 95 and muggy in MI...

    -Mathias
  • martianmartian Posts: 220
    I've been looking for a 4-5 year old SATURN sedan for my stepson..but htey are impossible to find! Those advertised for private sale are usually manual transmission and very high (>100K) mileage. I have driven SATURS for the last 12 years, and they have been very good. But the dealers want huge prices for used ones, and there aren't that many! Except on EBAY-and 90% of these cars are in Florida.
  • qbrozenqbrozen Posts: 26,207
    where are u located?

    i've never had a problem finding Saturns.

    '10 Equinox LS; '08 Charger R/T Daytona; '67 Coronet R/T; '14 Town&Country Limited; '18 BMW X2. 49-car history and counting!

  • mpp2mpp2 Posts: 97
    I wouldn't worry too much about the "transmission problems". I have an 03 TL type S with 37000 miles and no problems. I also had a 2000 Accord with 53000 miles (although only a 4 cyl) that had no transmission problems. I think these transmission failures have been way overblown on the internet (while I do sympathize with those folks who have had legitimate problems with their tranmissions).
  • lancerfixerlancerfixer Posts: 1,308
    I was wondering the same thing. They're all over the place here, and they're dirt cheap, to boot. Saturns have some of the lousiest resale values of any brand.
  • martianmartian Posts: 220
    I can't find any used SC-2 coupes, or late model VUEs at all (except from dealers)-where should I look?
  • qbrozenqbrozen Posts: 26,207
    why is it a problem to buy from a dealer?

    Thing is, its tougher to find late model cars being sold private party ... several reasons for this, but I think the main reason on something like a Saturn, for instance, is as lancer said, its poor resale. Many more folks will find themselves upside-down and need to trade-in their vehicles so that they can roll over the negative equity. That's my take on it, anyway.

    By the way, you know they haven't made the SC2 in a few years, right? Just making sure you aren't looking for an '04 or something ... cause you'll NEVER find it. ;)

    '10 Equinox LS; '08 Charger R/T Daytona; '67 Coronet R/T; '14 Town&Country Limited; '18 BMW X2. 49-car history and counting!

  • divatrudidivatrudi Posts: 2
    Hi -

    This has been a very informative thread. We're in need for a new(er) car this year. We've been driving a 1995 Escort for 5 years and put 122,000+ kms on it. It's wearing down (loudly!).

    I'm not a huge fan of the Escort, though it has been reliable and drove well in our winter weather (I'm in eastern Canada).

    We're considering buying a 2002 Toyota Echo. I've generally had a love of Hondas but the resale on them here is quite high. I see Saturns for cheap, but I'm leary of them. I've also considered leasing a new Kia, but don't know enough about them.

    Any thoughts? We want to spend less than $10,000 on a used vehicle. Want good fuel economy, need 4-door and a reasonable cargo space (we have one child and we do some camping). I prefer a manual transmission. We don't do a heap of highway driving - mostly city driving.

    We're considering those coming off lease and wondered about buying from a car rental company like Budget, that is upgrading their fleet.

    Thanks for any input.
  • kyfdxkyfdx Posts: 130,684
    is the Mazda Protege.. There was an '03 with manual transmission, in ES trim (top trim level), in my local paper today for $10,900...

    If you need a little more room, the Protege5 is the hatchback model and comes loaded.. An '02 model might be right around $10K-$11K...

    The biggest complaint about the Echo is it's extremely small size, and lack of power...

    Of course, if you are talking $10K CAD, then the Mazdas will be a little too much...

    regards,
    kyfdx

    Did you get a good deal? Be sure to come back and share!

    Edmunds Moderator

  • steine13steine13 Posts: 2,715
    Agreed on the Canadian $$, but if it's $10k US, you are the poster child for a used MT Vibe with 40k on it.... probably an '03, maybe a high-mile '04 if you're lucky.
    Toyota quality, Pontiac price, tons of room; I like mine.... but it's an '04 18k mile base with MT.. these do +- $10k at the auction. That'll be US dollars...
    Double the miles, you should be in the ballpark...
    -Mathias
  • jlawrence01jlawrence01 Posts: 1,828
    A few points:

    1) A Toyota Echo is a very small car. Make sure that you test drive one to make sure that you can live with it BEFORE purchasing it. My wife - who generally NEVER complains about a car was very vocal about her dislike of the Echo when she got one as a rental.

    2) As this is a US based website, do realize that our recommendations are often based on what we see in the marketplace in the US. As I found out in recent trips to British Columbia and Ottawa, the US and Canadian car markets are two different beasts.

    3) I would strongly recommend The Complete Canadian Used Car guide which is published by the Automotive Protection Association as well as Phil Edmundston's Lemonaid Car Guides as two of the best resources on buying vehicles in canada. I discovered both while living in Detroit and I purchase the books periodically.
  • lancerfixerlancerfixer Posts: 1,308
    I'm wondering the same thing...why is it such a bad thing to buy from a dealer?

    BTW, I did a quick search of Massachusetts (I used a 50 mile radius of Townsend, my old home town, because I don't know which town you're in and it was the first Mass. ZIP code I remembered off the top of my head) on AutoTrader and found 40 SC2s. I didn't do a manual/automatic search, though frankly most you find WILL be manuals, likely. That's ok, though; your stepson should learn anyway. :)
  • divatrudidivatrudi Posts: 2
    Thank you for the feedback. We're good with the size of the Echo (our Escort is a 2 door hatchback and it has been plenty big for us). The Echo hatchback is too small though.

    I will look at Mazda's (I tend to forget about them for no known reason) and yes, I'm talking in Canadian Dollars (which these days, isn't that far off the USD).

    Thanks for the book recommendations. I'll check them out.
  • Hi. I just joined this forum and would like to get some advice from you. My younger brother just settled in Washington DC area and wants to buy a decent used car. After reading this thread, I think Ford Taurus might be a best choice for him, but I'm still curious what year/mileage/etc I can expect with 6-7K. Any input/advice will be greatly appreciated. Thank you.
  • Hi there,

    You might want to swing by "Purchasing Used Vehicles", where at one point Mathias detailed how a Chevy Prizm is a Toyota Corolla in all but name.

    This range will get you into a Prism comfortably. I would suggest it be your second choice, if not your first.

    -Greg
  • jasmith52jasmith52 Posts: 460
    depending on your needs the Prizm may or may not be a good car. The Prizm is reliable and cheap - Yes, but comfortable and safe - not really.

    If the Taurus is the kind of car you want then you can probably get a 2000-2001 for your price range. Buy the car from a private party and have a mechanic check the car out before you purchase it.
  • jlawrence01jlawrence01 Posts: 1,828
    **If the Taurus is the kind of car you want then you can probably get a 2000-2001 for your price range**

    Actually, you should be able to get a '02-03 Taurus for $6-7k. If you are willing to accept a car with 40-60k miles.
  • thanks a lot for taking your time to answer my questions. I used to drive Ford Taurus 93 for a couple of years after buying it used in 1999 and I think a bigger Taurus is more comfy than a smaller Prizm, no matter how reliable it might be.

    One quick question: how many miles do you think is relatively safe from a mechanical failture for a Taurus? Say 40K or 50K miles? Thanks.
  • frankefranke Posts: 3
    A three year old Taurus if taken care of will probably do 200k miles with no major repair. My son bought my company car 3 years ago at about 58k miles and has close to 76k miles on it now with no repairs and only normal maintance. I have always had the car serviced at 5k intervals so I know it has been well taken care of. I have a new car on order with delivery due at the end of the month so another well maintained Taurus will become available.
  • Can't argue with the roomy side of Taurii, but I left Ford forever after the second Sable blew up with less than 50k on the engine. (I got two off-coprorate-lease units my Dad's boss parked for 3 years, and both of them drained the radiator thorugh the cylinder head)

    I'm sure they're different these days, but I'll never know how. Best of luck though. :) :)

    -Greg
  • dinkiedinkie Posts: 1
    I am in the market for a car in the $5,000 range.....maybe up to $7,000, but prefer the former. I've seen 1999 Saturns with around $60,000 miles. I've also seen Honda Accords with around 150,000 miles in that range. I've seen a couple of Kia SUV's, Mazda Protege, and lots of Cavaliers and similar cars. I don't have enough knowledge to compare the car, year, and amount of miles. Any suggestions for what I should be interested in for the price?

    Thanks!
  • kyfdxkyfdx Posts: 130,684
    Protege
    Geo/Chevy Prizm (Corolla clone)
    Civic (If you get up to $7K, you can get a decent one)
    Sentra

    Pickup truck? Ford Ranger

    Avoid:

    Cavalier
    150K mile Accords (unless they are under $3K)
    anything Korean

    Did you get a good deal? Be sure to come back and share!

    Edmunds Moderator

  • I am looking for a used (1999 and up) vehicle that can tow about 3500 lbs, offers good fuel economy and is ranked high on reliability, would have under 80K miles, and would be in the $9-14K range. I have been looking at CRVs, Highlanders, Tacomas, and Pathfinders, yet nothing seems to match these criteria, though, KBB and Edmunds Private Party prices indicate that something should work. What makes/models would you look at? Any other advice helpful.
  • danf1danf1 Posts: 935
    2001-2003 Hyundai Santa Fe should work based on your criteria.
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