Howdy, Stranger!

It looks like you're new here. If you want to get involved, click one of these buttons!





Howdy, Stranger!

It looks like you're new here. If you want to get involved, click one of these buttons!

Did you get a great deal? Let us know in the Values & Prices Paid section!
Meet your fellow owners in our Owners Clubs

Used Vehicles Best Values

1246720

Comments

  • jaserbjaserb Posts: 858
    IIRC, max rating was 2700 for our 2001 2.7 V6 FWD.

    If you really need to tow that much I would go with something mid sized at least. Think Explorer, Pathfinder, 4Runner. I wouldn't even try to tow 3500 lbs with a CRV or Santa Fe - that much weight is like a 21' boat. If you're looking Japanese you're probably finding that they're priced to the moon, although a Pathfinder might work. I'd stick with the Explorer or Ranger over the S10 / Blazer, which are miserable little beasts to drive. The Durango is unreliable and sucks gas.

    What exactly are you looking to tow?

    -Jason
  • I find this thread very helpful... now I will try to check out Ford Taurus and Chevy Prizm.

    I dont know anything about cars... most of us ladies just look at the colors and design. Anyways, can you suggest a good car for me. I am a new driver (1 year) and am looking for an affordable car. A car the is fuel efficient, and have a lot of storage/trunk. I was previously looking at Scion XB but I dont like the style... plus Im afraid that the car might fall apart :blush: .... Please give me some advice on which car shall I look for that are of Good Quality, Fuel Efficient ($!), A lot of room/space, but most of all.... affordable and FUEL EffiCient, like 7K? :(
    Is used car a better bet than new cars?
  • steine13steine13 Posts: 2,715
    "Is used car a better bet than new cars?"

    Impossible to answer, there's so much that goes into this.
    New driver? You'll pay through the nose in insurance on a new car, depending on where you live.

    But if you have a job with steady income and a 50-mile commute, then you might be well advised to buy a new Civic LX or Corolla LE and have done with it... if you hang on to it for the long term, this will be a very good deal, and the fuel will be cheap.

    A student driving 10k per year, and no steady job? The best $2-3k Buick Century, Ford Taurus or Escort, any older, domestic, well-taken-care-of car is you best bet. Drive carefully and don't carry collision insurance, that'll save a lot of money... gas at $3/gal is still NOT the biggest part of your car expenses, trust me.

    Looking at Prizms and Tauruses is an excellent start; your best bet at this time of high gas prices will be the Taurus; you will have a difficult time finding Prizms, they get snapped up quickly.

    Around here (mid-MI), the State unloads tons of 3-4-year-old 80-90k Tauruses that have been taken care of... they are bought at auction for $3 or less, more or less in bulk, so for "around" $4 you can have a very solid driver... 02 Taurus SE, 90k miles, $4300+tax&registration, that's your best bet IF you don't drive 30k per year.

    There's several threads, some dormant for a few months, that discuss these things here on Smart Shopper... you're on th right track; look around.

    And any used car you buy MUST go to a competent mechanic. No exceptions :-)

    -Mathias
  • Mathias,

    I generally agree with what you say ... except on the gas mileage of the Taurus. My experience is 24-27 miles on average assuming 50% highway.

    IMO, if gas mileage is a concern, I would go over to the Impala or even, the **NEW** Chevy Malibus which sip the gas lightly.
  • I've found a couple of cars that have been in accidents (but not totaled/salvaged) selling for 15-20% less than the same car with a clear carfax. If I get one of these car checked out by a mechanic and they don't find any problems, could it be a good deal? Or could there be problems that won't turn up in an inspection?

    What should I look for when I test drive one of these cars? I went to the dealer that's selling one of these cars, and the salesman told me that it was just a minor accident: the only thing that needed to be fixed was the bumper.

    One of the cars was in an accident in texas, the other was in an accident in south carolina. Can I call up the local DMV and confirm if that the salesman is saying true?
  • Hello everyone. I'm new to this board. I'm a single mother of 2 and I am looking to purchase a used vehicle. I would like to know everyone's opinion on the MB 300E, BMW 325i or is, or the Lexus. I'm looking for a durable, dependable car with longevity. Yes, I know....I have champagne taste with a beer wallet. (smile) But until I get out of nursing school, it will do. May even plan to keep it as a 2nd car.

    Dependability is all I'm asking with low maintenance. I cannot afford to get stuck on the hwy with my 2 little ones. Most of these cars I just mentioned were in the price range of $3000-$4000. Please give me the pros and cons and what to look for so I don't end up with a "lemon". Thanks to all who reply

    Me and My 2
  • asafonovasafonov MinneapolisPosts: 409
    You may get lucky, but in the 5k price range, an entry level luxury car is pretty much a discard, not wanted by anybody else. Most MBs/Bimmers/Lexi would be from the early 90s if not earlier. Considering what I read here about expensive maintenance and repairs on these as they age (never owned one), I would definitely stay away from entry-lux. Heck, for 5k it is pretty difficult to pick up a reliable, safe economy/midsize!

    This topic has been discussed on this thread a lot, if you go back you may see vehicles such as a Protege, Prizm, Taurus, Malibu, Mitsubishi Galant, Villager minivan. You may find a newer car if you are willing and able to drive a manual. Since bulletproof reliability (which is NEVER "guaranteed", even on a new car) is your top priority, I would stick with these unglamorous choices. But, it is your money, your choice, buy what you like and what works for you.
  • I think I will just forget about the luxury cars right now until I can afford a good one. The Acura Integra seems to peak my interest as well as the Honda Prelude both 1994. I've owned a Honda Civic EX Cpe and when I traded it in, I had 216K mi. Someone bought my car the end of that week. Other than the wear and tear, Honda's are very good reliable cars....just high on the theft list.
  • rroyce10rroyce10 Posts: 9,359
    .. ** MB 300E, BMW 325i or is, or the Lexus.. **

    There is no such thing as a $5,000 Bimmer, Lexus or Benz --- unless, you're ready to drop another $5,000 into it the day after you buy it ....



    Terry :sick:
  • jlawrence01jlawrence01 Posts: 1,828
    I guess the original poster does not realize the COST of Mercedes maintenance.

    Many years ago, a doctor friend asked me to take his Mercedes into town (45 miles away) for an oil change (in return, I could drive his sled). It saved me some gas (and I was a starving student at the time). When the guy said, "That'll be $120, I darn near fainted!!"
  • There is no such thing as a $5,000 Bimmer, Lexus or Benz --- unless, you're ready to drop another $5,000 into it the day after you buy it ....

    C'mon Terry. You could easily pick up a 95 or slightly older ES for around 5K, with around 100-120K miles, and that'll be darn near as reliable as a brand new domestic.
  • Go to http://www.autotrader.com and type in your requirements (Lexus, max 5K and the zip) and see what kind of hits you get. I did one for my area and I found a few 1996-1997 ES 300s with 150K+ miles for around that kind of money. But, what kind of conditions those cars are in is anybody's guess. However, since I had a Camry with 204K that was running perfectly, I would at least look into those cars, if I had to have a luxury car on a limited budget.

    But I would avoid any MB/BMW with high mileages.
  • qbrozenqbrozen Posts: 26,209
    Definitely not the bimmer or benz for dependability and low maintenance. I've heard many good things about Lexi with high miles ... BUT, in your pricerange you are looking at those with over 100k miles. I don't care what car it is, if its got over 100k miles, its not going to be cheap and easy to maintain. Something is bound to go wrong eventually ... even if its just tires and shocks.

    With 2 kids, I would think the 3-series would be too small anyway. Same goes for those others you mentioned (integra and prelude).

    My brother is in a similar situation as you. The car that just died on him is a '93 Taurus wagon ... with over 160k miles and very minimal maintenance/repairs. So he is looking to replace it with the same vehicle ... and I can't blame him. I have found a SLEW of them with less than 60k miles for under $4k. I even found an identical '93 with 48k miles for $2500!

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

  • jlawrence01jlawrence01 Posts: 1,828
    Definitely not the bimmer or benz for dependability and low maintenance. I've heard many good things about Lexi with high miles ... BUT, in your price range you are looking at those with over 100k miles

    A $5k Lexus will probably get you one with 160-200k miles. Most 100k low-end Lexus that I have seen are $10k+.
  • Go to http://www.autotrader.com and type in your requirements (Lexus, max 5K and the zip) and see what kind of hits you get. I did one for my area and I found a few 1996-1997 ES 300s with 150K+ miles for around that kind of money.

    Remember Terry's words.
    Asking, Liking, Taking.

    Try the same search with max 6K or 6.5K instead of 5, you'll see a few 120K 95's as well.
  • I will look into the Toyota's and Honda's. I know from experience they are good cars. Just thought I could "upgrade" a little without breaking my pockets. Still have a year of school to go. :)
  • steine13steine13 Posts: 2,715
    I will look into the Toyota's and Honda's. I know from experience they are good cars.

    Problem is, everybody else knows it, too. Going Honda shopping with $5 in your pocket is not going to be easy... Buddy of mine is looking to sell a '99 Toyota Solare, 4cyl, auto, leather, sunroof, with 100k miles.

    He's looking to get $7+ and I think he will... for a 7-year-old car with 100k miles that will begin to rust in the fender wells before the next owner pays it off.

    Good luck, but prepare for some frustration. A well-cared-for domestic may be the smarter choice.

    -Mathias
  • gussguss Posts: 1,181
    In that price range you may be able to get a 98-99 Infiniti I30 or a loaded up 00-01 Buick Regal. Both are pretty reliable and in the near luxury class. The Buick would be the better buy , but you won't have the Infiniti name on it.

    The I30 is kind of unwanted step-child in the Infiniti line up.
  • rroyce10rroyce10 Posts: 9,359
    .. **The I30 is kind of unwanted step-child in the Infiniti line up...**

    They can't be that unwanted .... clean low miler 99's still see over $7,000 at any auction in the country ...



    Terry.
  • Kirstie_HKirstie_H Posts: 11,077
    Heck no! I had a used I30 and it ran great and didn't eat me alive in maintenance. I'd do that again in a heartbeat. I also see 'em all over town.

    MODERATOR

    Need help navigating? [email protected] - or send a private message by clicking on my name.

    Share your vehicle reviews

  • gussguss Posts: 1,181
    still be a better value than a higher miled BMW 3 series of the same year I would think.
  • in buying an I30 over a Max if money is an issue.
    It's not like a Max in stripped down anyway, even in GXE form.
  • Hi you and your 2:

    I know it's a waste of effort to even suggest, no American woman, save the coolest of the hippie-chicks, would ever even think about such a thing, but these really do top-the-chart for reliability/durability and cool-design-features, and would be in your price range:

    Subaru, late '90s; like a Forester when they first came out.

    OK, I'm sorry; you can stop making that disgusted-face, I won't bring it up again.

    Here's the important stuff, though:

    Before you or anyone else misunderstands me and thinks I'm calling you or them shallow, or anything remotely like that let me say:

    I'm a firm believer that you should drive a car that you really like; that you think is cool and that you're happy with. You spend so much money on a car, and so much time in it, that if you don't like any part of it - reliability, comfort, performance, handling, aesthetics, whatever - then you're going to be aggravated every time you see the damn thing, which will be every day. Since the appearances and exits to the series of vignettes that make up our days are predominantly made in our vehicles, and in public (read: in front of people we don't-yet-and-may-never-know), our vehicle often relays a "first-and-only" impression to every person that sees us. So wanting to ride in style isn't a bad thing; it's a perfectly valid human-thing.

    OK (deep breath), that said, it appears from your posts that (1) although reliability is your main concern associated this decision (with darn good reason - 2 of them actually), and (2)price is an absolute limiting factor...(3) a desire for luxury/status (and as I said, that's a perfectly understandable thing) associated with certain vehicle brands seems to be driving the decision-making process here.

    If I read this thread right, originally you were considering BMW, Mercedes, Infiniti, Lexus, and some others that were neither in your price range nor reliable; the models I saw mentioned were tended towards sports models - making them even more expensive and less reliable; then there was some discussion of domestic models (I guess even the pretense of worrying about reliability had been abandoned at that point, in favor of getting leather seats on the cheap); then finally 'settling' for a Honda or Toyota.

    Bravo, brave mother! Bravo for sacrificing the desire for projecting a high-status first impression to strangers in favor of the something that you knew was more important - reliability for the sake of you and your kids, as well as some financial piece-of-mind. Especially in the face of a group of posters that seemed to be happy to hold your hand and lead down the road to the exact thing you were trying to avoid - an overpriced lemon that would put you in a world of financial hurt over-and-over, while not even fulfilling its basic function of getting you from place to place. Honestly, if you can't afford the frequent and expensive repair bills and associated no-car time that comes with Bimmers, (recent) Mercedes, and even Volvos these days, then taking the bus is a better proposition than owning one of these.

    To any posters taking offense: I'm not trying to be ugly, but, sorry, you can poo-poo the holier-than-thou Subaru guy all you want, you know I speak the truth.

    Anyway, you're not going for the shiny lemon (or polished turd, as butthead would say). You've obviously got a head on your shoulders so I trust you'll at least consider this for a second or two, or at least more than the Subaru:

    Your average Honda and Toyota (unless it's a late 80's, early 90's sedan or wagon) isn't cheap, although obviously not as expensive as some of the brands you were considering. They're not as reliable as they used to be, either, although they're still 100,000,000% more reliable than anything Detriot has put out in over 30 years.

    You could go even farther towards your objective of getting affordable reliability (and a really cool look, if you ask me, but there are a lot of people that don't agree with me there) by looking at a 1988 - 1994 Camry or Accord or similar. If you're lucky enough to find one for sale (because people don't like to part with them, no matter how much money they have - they're just that dependable) you could pick one up for between 2000 - 3000. 3500 if it's cherry.

    Of course you would want to take it to a mechanic to look at before you buy it - it would be an old car, after all. He'll tell you that you're about to buy what might be the best-engineered vehicle in automotive history, and offer to buy it from you for $500 more than whatever you're paying for it. Generally, if you have the routine maintenance done regularly, and you have a decent mechanic give it a good once-over every 50k-75k miles, then you can confidently expect well over 300k miles. In fact, since there's still so many around in such good shape mechanically, there's really no telling how long it could last.

    That's my extended 2-cents. If you can't bear the thought of a Subaru (and no woman can, it seems like), then a '90 Camry (or Camry wagon! The wagons are even cooler!) with less than 275k miles on it, checked thouroughly by a mechanic before purchase, should remove any worries about getting stuck on the side of the road for the next three to four years at least. You'll even have a little money left over, and you shouln't have to pay for much beyone routine maintenance until you're out of school. And then you can dump it, and as long as you haven't trashed it, you'll be able to sell for $2500 - $3000 then finance the Euro-sled of your choice.

    High-end stuff is fun, especially the Euro stuff. I've tried to scheme my way into a new Saab for 10 years now (and that's about the worst of them). They're just overpriced and aren't reliable; they're made for people that have lots of time and money, that's all.
  • rroyce10rroyce10 Posts: 9,359
  • isellhondasisellhondas Issaquah WashingtonPosts: 20,225
    Yeah...I read that twice and I'm totally lost!
  • Best used cars are those types offered at estate sales that the family doesn't want to keep - LeSabres, Grand Marquis, Crown Vics, even Oldsmobiles and Bonnevilles.

    I'd suggest buying in January, when their credit card bills are due, so son or daughter will unload the inherited car to pay for Christmas.

    I'd avoid a Chrysler with the fwd 4 speed auto, no matter what the year or mileage.
  • mitzijmitzij Posts: 613
    buy a Subaru...

    or a Camry...

    or an Accord...

    and you're a wonderful mother for settling on a Toyota when you really want a BMW.
  • asafonovasafonov MinneapolisPosts: 409
    That was a mouthful (or a screenful?)

    Your average Honda and Toyota (unless it's a late 80's, early 90's sedan or wagon) isn't cheap, although obviously not as expensive as some of the brands you were considering. They're not as reliable as they used to be, either, although they're still 100,000,000% more reliable than anything Detriot has put out in over 30 years.

    I would disagree - I would take a boring early 21st century domestic midsize over an ANY early 90's Honda or Toyota - as wonderfully engineered as these are, age just takes its toll, especially if they ever see snow or salt.

    You could go even farther towards your objective of getting affordable reliability (and a really cool look, if you ask me, but there are a lot of people that don't agree with me there) by looking at a 1988 - 1994 Camry or Accord or similar. If you're lucky enough to find one for sale (because people don't like to part with them, no matter how much money they have - they're just that dependable) you could pick one up for between 2000 - 3000. 3500 if it's cherry.

    Where I live (Minneapolis), most cars of that vintage are rust buckets, Japanese imports perhaps especially so. The OP's budget was 5k, though, not 2-3.5k, which makes a big difference in the kind of a used car you could get.

    This is the kind of situation where I would consider leasing - don't new Accord LXs run for about $200/mo with 2.5k in drive-away costs? That's of course assuming the OP has a steady job and can afford the 200/mo outlay in the first place.
  • I am crying out for help here! Some recent happenings with my parent are causing my family to move back my parents home and pretty much liquidate everything, including my car. I need some help in figuring out which SUV type vehicle will be the best to purchase. The catch is that I can only afford to buy/finance in the range of around seven thousand dollars, and do not want to get something that has in excess of 100k miles as I feel I would end up putting more money in to fixing the vehicle than it is worth. Can anyone point me in a direction of a vehicle that will last and be safe for the wife and my two daughters???????
  • larsblarsb Posts: 8,204
    There is an ad in the Arizona Republic newspaper today for a 1978 Toyota Cressida, actual 57K miles, pristine, bucket seats in front, power everything, for $3700.

    If it is really an "old lady who drove it only to church on Sundays" car, and is actually only 57,000 miles on the engine, that's like stepping into a time machine back to 1984 and buying it used with 57,000 miles.

    Cressidas were awesome cars. This car is going to make someone happy for a few more years. I wish I needed it or could find a way to buy it !!!
  • isellhondasisellhondas Issaquah WashingtonPosts: 20,225
    Years take a toll as well as miles do.

    A lot of things are probably deteriorated on that Cressida just from age.

    Transmission seals quickly come to mind.
  • Kirstie_HKirstie_H Posts: 11,077
    also, he/she did specify SUV-type vehicle.

    MODERATOR

    Need help navigating? [email protected] - or send a private message by clicking on my name.

    Share your vehicle reviews

  • jaserbjaserb Posts: 858
    Why an SUV? Do you need to haul a boat or drive off road regularly? SUVs aren't particularly safe or fuel efficient and the most reliable ones - Toyotas, Nissans and the like - won't be found under the $7k mark unless they have about a zillion miles. Blazers and Explorers are known to be problematic. Maybe a Jeep Cherokee would work OK, but they're about the most uncomfortable vehicles made in the last 20 years. Unless you drive the Rubicon trail to work there's probably better choices.

    Might I suggest a nice larger domestic sedan? Maybe something like a Buick Century or Chevy Impala would fit the bill. Lots of bang for the buck. The Taurus is another one that goes cheap. Boring, yes, but they're probably the best bet for folks on a budget.

    -Jason
  • isellhondasisellhondas Issaquah WashingtonPosts: 20,225
    Good advise!
  • I have been reading over the responses to my post and I cant thank you enough! The only reason I was looking for something the the range of the SUV is because I just got rid of the 2002 Pontiac Bonneville and with my girls in the back i always had to move my seat way up so they could have leg room / room for the baby's car seat. I have recently been looking around the local market and have seen a few 2001 Hyundai Elantra's and 1996 Audi A-6's for around the range I'm looking at. What do you all think of these and would it just be in my best interest to look more toward the Impala or Taurus??
  • If space is truly a concern, you seem to get the most space for the money with a minivan. I've seen 99-01 domestics with 60-75k miles in the $7,000 range. We have 3 kids and own both an Explorer and a Town and Country. I would much rather take the T&C on a trip any day because of the additional room, better handling, and better fuel economy.

    I can't see an Elantra having more room than a Bonneville. I would think the Elantra would be a bit smaller. The 10 year old Audi would scare me from a maintenance standpoint.
  • corvettecorvette United StatesPosts: 6,876
    A ten-year-old Audi A6? Audi and VW are among the least reliable cars with the highest repair costs (like Saab, Mercedes, BMW, Volvo, and Land Rover). Hyundai is not known for its reliability either...

    You can pick up a newish Taurus, Sable, Impala, or LeSabre for around the $7k mark. You could get a 2000-2001 Bonneville SE within that budget.
  • Let me lay out my wish list:

    1) Reliable enough to last for one year with little risk of major repairs.
    2) Low depreciation over the year so that I can get back as much of my original purchase price as possible.
    3) Other true costs of owning the vehicle for the year are reasonably low.
    4) Ideally around $3K, but can go higher if necessary for the reliablility I desire or if going higher will get me a car that I can sell closer to my buying price on the back end.

    Basically, I want a car that will last me the year and have the lowest net cost to me in the end. My financial position should be much different a year from now, which will allow me to purchase a vehicle more to my wife's liking. In the meantime, we need a second car to get me to and from work (about 35 miles round trip). An older Accord or Camry seems to be the obvious choice to fit my needs, but perhaps that's too obvious. Do any of you have suggestions as to my best options to achieve the goals I desire?
  • qbrozenqbrozen Posts: 26,209
    An accord or camry that comes in under $3k would either be very old or high very high miles. IMO, not a good choice for a cheap beater. There are others out there you can get with lower miles for less money. I would suggest looking at Saturns. Even a Ford Crown Vic/Merc Grand Marquis can be had for cheap money and is fairly bulletproof if you find the right one.

    There isn't much out there, aside from a Hyundai or Kia, that you can buy that cheap and still experience alot of depreciation over a year. A $3k Saturn now, might be worth $2500 later, same with the Ford twins mentioned above. If it remains a decent car and you don't drive to Ecuador and back in that year, a $3k car will retain its value pretty well.

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

  • qwallsqwalls Posts: 406
    I posted in Real-World Trade-in values where I've been hanging out for years, and Kirstie suggested I post here. There are a few updates since that post.

    I’ve had the ’94 Legend for about a year now, and I still enjoy driving it, but maintenance is costing a lot more than I anticipated. Premium gas doesn’t help either.

    In the past year:

    horn button (minor) :-)
    brakes all around, new rotors in back
    inner tie rod
    tires
    heater blower motor
    master cylinder
    upper ball joint
    just got it out of the shop for a speed sensor
    and I'm only 18k miles away from the timing belt, water pump, etc.

    about $2500 not counting the oil changes, transmission and coolant flushes, etc.

    I figured I would be good for 18k miles without additional expense, but now it's showing early signs of a leak in the head gasket, so I'm done.


    I've had it almost exactly a year. Bought it with 138k miles, and it has 162k now.

    So, this is what I’m looking for:

    A daily driver I won’t mind being seen in.
    Decent gas mileage
    Ability to seat 4 six-footers (I drive a lot at lunch) :-)
    Semi-fun to drive, adequate power
    Reliable
    Good road car
    Not overly expensive to maintain

    The Legend fits the bill except for the gas mileage and cost to maintain.

    OK car experts, any thoughts? I haven’t really decided on a budget yet, but let’s say $5-8k. The alternative is to nurse the Legend along and keep adding coolant until it dies, and I may do that.

    Thinking about an older Accord, or maybe a 626, Galant, or Maxima? I read all of the earlier posts and saw the Taurus mentioned a lot, but I've never driven one, and I don't know it it will have the solid Honda feel that I like.

    Oh, Terry – I still love the TL. :-)

    Q
  • kyfdxkyfdx Posts: 130,741
    You know... 24K miles in one year is a lot for a car that already has well over 100K miles on the clock..

    I'm actually not surprised that you had to put that much money into it...

    I also don't have any good alternatives.. :(

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

    Edmunds Moderator

  • qwallsqwalls Posts: 406
    The original plan was to keep it for 2 years, and sell it with 180K on the clock. Drove a bit more than planned, and spent a lot more money than planned. Thanks anyway.
  • steine13steine13 Posts: 2,715
    The alternative is to nurse the Legend along and keep adding coolant until it dies, and I may do that.


    No you won't. You're too obsessive about cars to drive a luxury beater... it'll grate on you daily. Ask me how I know.

    I don't think you'll be happy with some Taurus, either, even though they make a lot of car for the money.

    There simply isn't a cheap way to drive 24k/year, I don't think... see, I get to do all kinds of goofy stuff with cars, but I don't put more then six or seven thousand miles a year on the "spare" car... like Walt said, no wonder you had some repairs!

    Here are your choices, as they occur to my jaded mind:

    - A new Honda. Either Civic LX sedan, or Accord VP, or similar. Yeah it's twice your uppper limit of $8, never mind the $5, but if you look 3 or 4 years down the road, you'll see what I mean... that $8k Accord -- here in cheap MI, that'll buy an '02 with 85k, IF you're lucky --will be pushing 9 years old and 180k and will be worth very little. A four-year-old Honda anything, even with 95k, will be an easy sale, and will have had nothing beyond oil changes... also, a good way to keep miles off the TL.

    - A used Vibe. Surprising room for such a small car; stretch-out room for 4 six-footers no problem. Fun to drive, an '04 with 50k should come in under $10, and this is a car that you can drive for free forever... being a compact, the suspension is likely to last a very long time; ditto the brakes, and the engine has a timing chain and should be good for as long as you can stand it. The downside is the car is fairly loud in town, and a bit of a dog with an automatic.
    A used '03+ Corolla is a similarly decent choice, but likely to be expensive, and a lot blander.

    - Beyond that, I can only offer goofy suggestions like a used Mitsubishi Galant, or indeed the 626 you mentioned... these might come in cheap enough to be worth buying used. The Taurus/Buick/Impala set offers excellent value but no fun at all.

    There you have it. That's all I can come up with. Pathetic. 200 models on the market and nothing to buy...

    -Mathias
  • qwallsqwalls Posts: 406
    Hey Mathias,

    I was hoping you would chime in. For the record, I drive closer to 30k/year. The TL has almost 7k on it. Anyway, I'm afraid you're right. I am a bit anal, and having to check something daily doesn't appeal to me, but I may have to do it for a short time. It's already starting to annoy me. :-) I can guess how you know. :-)

    Hey, at least you tried. I haven't come up with much myself... An '02 Accord with 85k miles for $8k? Sign me up. Prices are higher here. Even if it does have 180k in 4 years, not a big deal because I'm not looking to drive free, just reasonable. I like to stay around $2k/year in costs on the spare car, and I'll be able to sell it for $3k even with 180k miles, so that gives me $750/year to spend on maintenance which should be doable on an '02 Accord. :-) Can't go much above $8k right now. Could maybe stretch to $10k, but would rather not.

    I saw some of your earlier posts about the vibe, and have been looking, but they seem to be a bit more expensive here. Like the timing chain, didn't know that. Maybe I need to make a trip North. :-) Nothing against the Corolla, but if I wanted a Toyota, I would have kept the Avalon. :-) How's it doing BTW?

    I appreciate the advice. I'm actually kind of glad you can't come up with much..that means I'm not crazy. I've been considerign just about everything..even domestics! :-) I think an Accord will be the best fit though.

    Take care,

    Q
  • jwatsjwats Posts: 72
    A low mileage Buick driven by an older couple who has maintained it religiously and now has stopped or cut back on driving. They are cheap, durable and available--but not exciting
  • qbrozenqbrozen Posts: 26,209
    i did a search on yahoo classifieds using the criteria of under $8k and under 75k miles.

    The only ones that came up that I think match all of your requirements were Maximas/Camrys/Accords/626s. So pretty much everything you were already thinking of. By the way, if you didn't already know, avoid the 4-cyl automatic 626, due to tranny failures.

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

  • qwallsqwalls Posts: 406
    Thanks Rob. I'll do some generic searches when I get home from work tonight. I had been searching Autotrader, but I forgot about Yahoo.
  • jaserbjaserb Posts: 858
    but an Olds Intrigue or even an Aurora might fit the bill. They benefit from the horrific resale of most domestics but have a bit more style than the Buicks / Taurii / Impalas around. GM powertrains are pretty bulletproof too.

    A neighbor of mine has a 1st gen Aurora in good condition. Really a nice looking car.

    -Jason
  • qbrozenqbrozen Posts: 26,209
    Actually, I was also going to suggest the Alero. Like you said, the horrific resale drags even the low-mileage newer ones WELL below $10k.

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

  • qwallsqwalls Posts: 406
    Not feeling the Aurora, Alero is probably too small, but I have considered the Intrigue.
Sign In or Register to comment.