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Used Vehicles Best Values

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Comments

  • theflushtheflush Posts: 100
    I tend to agree that about $8K would the right price from a dealer, IF it is in clean condition. However, this one was cosmetically in average condition (using Edmunds definitions) not clean condition. Mechanically it appeared to be in good shape and drove well. However, they did not seem too eager to lower the price, possibly because I was not too enthused about this MPV. I also drove a brand new '05 MPV LX today and could get it for about $18K ($25.5 sticker) without even negotiating. That would make more sense than buying a used one with 83K miles for $10K.

    The good thing about today was that I decided I think I prefer the '02 MPV better than the Villagers I have looked at. My dealer friend (who normally does not buy MPVs because they don't sell well in my town) will now be looking for '02 MPVs at the auctions for me.
  • isellhondasisellhondas Issaquah WashingtonPosts: 20,283
    Don't sell well in ANY town as I understand things.

    They fall on their face at the auctions.
  • qbrozenqbrozen Posts: 27,757
    They fall on their face at the auctions.

    I think that's true of all minivans aside from Siennas and Odysseys.

    '03 F250 7.3, '07 ML63, '08 Charger R/T Daytona; '67 Coronet R/T; '14 Town&Country Limited; '18 BMW X2. 52-car history and counting!

  • theflushtheflush Posts: 100
    Don't sell well in ANY town as I understand things.

    They fall on their face at the auctions.

    That should help my dealer friend find me a good deal, and still make a little money himself.
  • isellhondasisellhondas Issaquah WashingtonPosts: 20,283
    They aren't "bad" cars. They just have lousy resale compared to hondas and Toyota. So, if you like them they can be a good value!
  • asafonovasafonov MinneapolisPosts: 409
    Here in the Twin Cities, the 05 inventory (of MPVs) is long gone, and there are few 06 models remaining at all 5 Mazda dealers. So (with proper incentives) they are not such bad sellers.
  • jaserbjaserb Posts: 858
    It's an LX with LX+ and 4-seasons packages, MSRP $25k and change. We got it for a ridiculous, domestic-like $8k off MSRP. It may not be quite competitive with the Big 2 (Sienna and Odyssey) from a size / features standpoint but it drives and looks great, and with such a huge discount it was a no-brainer for us. One of our neighbors bought an Odyssey (old style) that was very similarly equipped at around the same time, and paid somewhere in the $24k range.

    -Jason
  • theflushtheflush Posts: 100
    If I was going to buy a new van, the MPV would be a no-brainer with the huge discounts being offered on the '05 leftovers. I imagine the '06 MPVs will be heavily discounted starting soon as well. It's definitely not an Ody or Sienna, but is a very good value for those with a smaller budget. However, my budget is even smaller than $18K, so I am going to have to go used.
  • theflushtheflush Posts: 100
    MPV on Ebay

    While it is not my preferred option to buy a vehicle from Ebay, here is an '02 MPV LX with 72,800 miles that is only 3 hours away and has a buy it now of $8,400 and ends in 2 days. I don't know what the reserve is. It seems like a much better deal than the one that I recently test drove at the closest dealer that had a used MPV in stock, which was 1.5 hours away. The one on ebay has 10K fewer miles and better options such as CD changer and power driver's seat. The big problem is that you can't judge the cosmetic or mechanical condition of a van on ebay.

    Is this really a good deal? (assuming everything checks out OK)

    Is there a price point where I should take a chance on it?

    I will probably not bid on it and will wait until my dealer friend has a chance to hit the auctions for a few weeks to find as good a deal. I am really using this ebay van as a point of reference more than anything.
  • z_camz_cam Posts: 3
    Hi,

    I average 20-22,000 miles a year on my cars. I also drive an SUV because I carry a lot of video and photographic equipment because of my work. I currently drive a 2001 Nissan Pathfinder. I generally buy used cars; I try to buy them 2-3 years old with low miles (usually 20-32,000 miles on them).

    The problem I have is that I usually reach or approach that magic 100,000 mile point in about 3 years. At this point I either have to trade (and get a paltry amount on the trade) for something with lower miles or decide if I am going to keep it and run it in the ground. What is your advice on the most cost effective way to buy vehicles from now on? Is leasing a viable option?

    What medium sized SUV'S (one WITHOUT a 3rd row seat) would you recommend that can take the mileage and that hold their resale value the best? I was considering the choice between another Pathfinder, the Toyota 4Runner, and the Lexus RX300 or RX330. Which ones are the best in gas mileage?

    Thanks!! :)
  • steine13steine13 Posts: 2,770
    A *new* Toyota Highlander. Your choice of engines and fwd/awd, but they're all good in mileage and resale.

    Seriously, though, how about an Outback or Legacy wagon?

    -Mathias
  • qbrozenqbrozen Posts: 27,757
    yeah, those pics really aren't helping matters. Very tough to tell what is going on.

    Trade-in value with that many miles is probably in the high $6k to maybe $7k range. So $8400 is a decent deal, but not a steal of a deal worth taking risks over, I don't think.

    '03 F250 7.3, '07 ML63, '08 Charger R/T Daytona; '67 Coronet R/T; '14 Town&Country Limited; '18 BMW X2. 52-car history and counting!

  • erics6erics6 Posts: 684
    I agree with Mathias. Highlander or Subaru. You'd be amazed at what you can get in the back of a Legacy/Outback or Forester... plus you get better mileage than any of the truck based SUVs. And the resale of the Highlander and Subaru are good, even with higher mileage.
  • theflushtheflush Posts: 100
    In addition to my search for a mini-van, I (like everyone else it seems) am looking for a more fuel efficient vehicle. However, I like having my 4WD PU for those 3 days a year that I have to drive to work in the snow, so I am considering something like a Vibe or Matrix AWD or Outback.

    How well does the AWD in these cars work in the snow and ice?

    What's the best value in an AWD car?

    What could I expect to pay for a Vibe AWD with average miles for its age?
  • qbrozenqbrozen Posts: 27,757
    How much snow are we talking about? If you only get it 3 times a year, I'm presuming its very little, in which case there is no need for AWD. Save yourself the money. Its not worth the gas or the extra purchase price for such little use. FWD with decent all-season tires has worked fine for me for 16 years, and I get way more than 3 days per year of snow.

    '03 F250 7.3, '07 ML63, '08 Charger R/T Daytona; '67 Coronet R/T; '14 Town&Country Limited; '18 BMW X2. 52-car history and counting!

  • theflushtheflush Posts: 100
    I live in Ohio, and the type of snow I'm talking about is 4-6 inches on average or a complete sheet of ice and my 3 days of snow are only the significant days not the 1 inch dusting days. I know AWD is not a necessity as I survived my first 8 years in Ohio with a Civic and it took several feet of snow in WVa for me to wreck it and most of that was due to me growing up in Alabama where it never snows and not having experience driving in snow. However, my drive to work is 20 miles of winding hills including some that I could not make it up in the snow without putting my truck in 4WD.

    So if I decide to waste money on an AWD wagon, what should I look at?

    I've seen some private party ads for a couple of Subarus. One is a 2000 Outback with 118K miles. Not sure of all the options since the ad did not list much. Asking $4,500 which seems like a good deal relative to TMV and KBB (assuming it is in good condition). The other is a '95 Legacy LS AWD sedan with 128K miles and is described as loaded. Asking price of $3,200, which seems a little high when compared to TMV. Any thoughts on the value and reliability of these?
  • suydamsuydam Posts: 4,583
    The problem with Subarus is that they can be kind of expensive to repair as they age, especially in Ohio where there aren't too many dealers to choose from. I think the Vibe might be the most economical choice given what your needs are.
    '14 Buick Encore Convenience
    '17 Chevy Volt Premiere
  • qbrozenqbrozen Posts: 27,757
    well, if you feel its necessary, I agree with the Vibe probably being the most economical. Old beat up subes command too much money for what you get, IMHO.

    '03 F250 7.3, '07 ML63, '08 Charger R/T Daytona; '67 Coronet R/T; '14 Town&Country Limited; '18 BMW X2. 52-car history and counting!

  • jasmith52jasmith52 Posts: 463
    For jlawrence01 and some of the other people familiar with vehicle fleet costs.

    How do you decide when it's time to sell on of the vehicles in your fleet and buy something new ?

    I got a great deal on an used 03 Sable (prior rental) a couple of years ago. But since I drive it quite alot the car now has 65k miles and is going up by around 20k miles per year. The car has been great so far - no problems and since I bought the car cheaply my cost per mile has been low. I am convinced that lightly used late model ex-rental cars are the way to go to minimize costs per mile.

    So if I want to optimize vehicle costs/up time and avoid costly major repairs when should I plan on trading for a new(er) car.

    I have some ideas of my own but would enjoy anyones enlightened comments on this issue
  • jlawrence01jlawrence01 Posts: 1,828
    Jasmith52,

    Before I get started, there are two types of "fleet vehicles" - executive vehicles and service vehicles.

    Executive vehicles are compensation vehicles. the company president wants a BMW, we gets a BMW. He keeps it as long as he wants and gets rid of it when he wants. In these cases, we try to keep the cars for four years unless 1) they mile up the vehicles (several have 50+ mile commutes) or 2) the vehicles are unreliable (read Volvo and Saab). Also, since we are having a good year, we bend the rules and allow sunroofs and leather.

    As you can guess, cost per mile is not a consideration. my only concern is that we set up the lease in a manner that we can sell the car after three years at or above the capitalizes cost. Also, occcasionally, I add options over the base models that are essential for resale (leather in luxury cars and 3rd row seats in SUVs).

    For service vehicles, we do four years **OR** 70k miles. That means some people get a new car in 30 months and others in four years.

    These are rough figures. In 70k miles, we generally have no problems.

    Now to your question. If I had my own business and I was going to run up 30k miles per year, what would I do?

    I would look for two year old models that are unpopular in the market - Taurus/Sable is a classic example, and drive the car until 150k and dump it. As the car miles up (about 120k miles), I would go talk to my local Enterprise Car Rental place and work with him as a "second" car. Those guys will often give you a good deal when your car is down (I negotated $16/day for the manager's choice which could be a Ford Aspire or a Cadillac Escalade depeding on this leftovers that day.

    If you are in an image position - i.e., entertaining customers, I might upgrade to a Lexus and run the car to 200k. That WILL cost you more per mile but used Lexus that are maintained do very well.

    One more thing. The critical thing about miling up any car is that you maintain the car religiously. I am convinced that at least some of the quality delta between Honda and the domestics comes from the practice of many Honda owners of returning their car to a dealership for regularly scheduled maintenance ON TIME.

    The only break down that I have had in 116k miles with my current Oldsmobile occurred on the first COLD December morning in December 2003. I had been scheuled to take the car in for a tune up and battery on Saturday. I cancelled to go to a football game. Three days later I was having it towed into a shop.

    That is probably more than you want but I feel pretty strongly on this subject.
  • imidazol97imidazol97 Crossroads of America I70 & I75 Posts: 24,840
    >The critical thing about miling up any car is that you maintain the car religiously. I am convinced that at least some of the quality delta between Honda and the domestics comes from the practice of many Honda owners of returning their car to a dealership for regularly scheduled maintenance ON TIME.

    Amen. I am glad to hear someone in the know vocalize that. I've often felt that's the difference for many models or cars. Foreign buyers are often intimidated by the dealership so they're afraid NOT to the take the car in when those services are due.

    2014 Malibu 2LT, 2008 Cobalt 2LT, 2015 Cruze 2LT,

  • audia8qaudia8q Posts: 3,138
    I am convinced that at least some of the quality delta between Honda and the domestics comes from the practice of many Honda owners of returning their car to a dealership for regularly scheduled maintenance ON TIME

    Great point....Back in the early 80's when Honda really took off I can remember the dealers drilling routine maintance into the heads of consumers. They implied the warranty would be voided if they didnt do everything at the dealership on time. Folks bought it hook, line and sinker. Honda wasn't the only one doing it but I had first hand experience with Honda. I doubt it still happens since consumers are a bit more enlightened ....but in general import buyers are a little more dialed into routine maintance. OTOH, I have seen domestics that have gone 40K without an oil change, just add some when you need it...very few imports could handle that kind of abuse..
  • michaellnomichaellno Posts: 4,300
    Having owned a few Accords over the years, I can attest to your comments.

    One thing, though, is that the regular maintenance was expensive! $300 or $400 for the 30K service, stuff like that. Was a real good money maker for the dealers, I should imagine.
  • qbrozenqbrozen Posts: 27,757
    One thing, though, is that the regular maintenance was expensive! $300 or $400 for the 30K service, stuff like that. Was a real good money maker for the dealers, I should imagine.

    That's only if you got sucked into the dealer's maintenance schedule. If you follow the manual, its FAR less than that. This is true of most dealers, though, regardless of manufacturer.

    '03 F250 7.3, '07 ML63, '08 Charger R/T Daytona; '67 Coronet R/T; '14 Town&Country Limited; '18 BMW X2. 52-car history and counting!

  • isellhondasisellhondas Issaquah WashingtonPosts: 20,283
    You have to remember something. The schedules in the owner's manual address the MINIMUM requirements. Every car manufacturer tries to keep the Costs of Ownership down to as little as possible.

    Some people, including myself like to take better care of their cars than that.
  • qbrozenqbrozen Posts: 27,757
    I'd agree to that ... but dealerships often push the "severe" schedule AND THEN SOME. Taking good care of your vehicle lies in between the two, in my opinion. More than the bare minimum, but still less than many service advisors try to get you to spring for.

    '03 F250 7.3, '07 ML63, '08 Charger R/T Daytona; '67 Coronet R/T; '14 Town&Country Limited; '18 BMW X2. 52-car history and counting!

  • jlawrence01jlawrence01 Posts: 1,828
    OTOH, I have seen domestics that have gone 40K without an oil change, just add some when you need it...very few imports could handle that kind of abuse..

    My boss and I bought 1980 Chevettes. His conked out after 70k. He had not changed the oil at all. He had an Olds Toronado and just topped off the tank. The larger engine could handle the abuse.

    I made 100k easily with frequent oil changes.

    Smaller engines - like those in the early imports - can't handle the abuse.
  • fezofezo Manahawkin, NJPosts: 10,379
    Well, I had an 80 Accord and later an 85 Accord and didn't drink the Kool Aid too much. I maintained the cars but only it the dealer when it seemed necessary. Got 167K out of the 80 and it was still mechanically fine, but it had lived on a barrier island the 4 years I had it and was killed by frame rust. The 85 was around 144K when I got T-boned. Ran like a top. Not a prayer of getting from insurance what the car was worth to me.
    2015 Mazda 6 Grand Touring, 2014 Mazda 3 Sport Hatchback, 1999 Mazda Miata 2004 Toyota Camry LE, 1999.
  • fezofezo Manahawkin, NJPosts: 10,379
    I would be remiss if I didn't confirm the price of Honda maintenence if followed to the letter as described in the $300 - $400 range.

    Maybe some of that is pay me now or pay me later.

    Current Accord is at 112K. Ody just about to turn 100K.
    2015 Mazda 6 Grand Touring, 2014 Mazda 3 Sport Hatchback, 1999 Mazda Miata 2004 Toyota Camry LE, 1999.
  • patpat Posts: 10,421
    Hi fezo - too funny! I was just wondering the other day where have you been. Glad to see you again.
  • corvettecorvette United StatesPosts: 7,636
    I'd agree to that ... but dealerships often push the "severe" schedule AND THEN SOME.

    That's another thing I have a problem with. If I go to a Nissan dealer and ask for a 30k service, I want what the manufacturer recommends and no more--not the $400 service package the dealer assumes I want. I don't need an engine air filter every 15,000 miles, nor does 99% of the population.

    I also have a problem with dealers (and anyone else) using and recommending transmission and coolant "flush" machines, without the approval of the vehicle manufacturer. In fact, Honda specifically recommends against using them, and explained in a dealer newsletter that changing the transmission fluid is defined to mean drain and fill.
  • lemmerlemmer Posts: 2,699
    My Infiniti dealer strongly recommends that you service the car every 4,000 miles (don't know where they came up with that interval) and includes in the service much unnecessary stuff like a can of oil treatment. The fact that they want to put some kind of snake oil in a new Infiniti scares the heck out of me. It seems like I remember companies like BMW and Porsche threatening to void your engine warranty if you put any of this junk in your engine.
  • theflushtheflush Posts: 100
    I am still looking for a mini-van as I have not been able to find what I want (02 or newer Mazda MPV) nearby. I am now test driving a blue 01 Toyota Sienna LE with 75,300 miles. It is in good condition and in addition to the standard LE features has alloy wheels, quad seating, and rear heat and air. It is missing the floor mats. I could see myself (or at least my wife) driving this van, but I would appreciate any thoughts on what a good purchase price would be on this van.
  • erics6erics6 Posts: 684
    Neighbors are looking for a replacement for their 250k Toyota Corolla wagon... looking at spending $10k - $12k. They are interested in a station wagon or car based SUV and would like (but are not set on) AWD, good gas mileage (hence the not set on AWD), roof rack, keyless entry and of course reliability.

    I'm thinking Subaru Legacy wagon, Honda CRV, Toyota RAV4, Mazda P5, Hyundai Elantra GT hatchback. Any other suggestions in the $10k-$12k range?
  • qbrozenqbrozen Posts: 27,757
    Subaru Forester
    Vibe/Matrix
    Mazda6 wagon
    Volvo V70

    stretch the budget a bit and get a new Fit.

    '03 F250 7.3, '07 ML63, '08 Charger R/T Daytona; '67 Coronet R/T; '14 Town&Country Limited; '18 BMW X2. 52-car history and counting!

  • trivumtrivum Posts: 1
    I have a hypothetical question about reselling something like a Mercedes vs. a Hyundai. If I had $10,000 to spend on a used car, and I could get a nice 2003 Hyundai Sonata or a C-Class 1998 Mercedes, in two years, which would be a better resell - the (now) 10-year-old Mercedes (with more miles obviously) or the 5-year-old Sonata?
  • jlawrence01jlawrence01 Posts: 1,828
    The one thing that MUST be considered will be the COST of repairs. A luxury car generally costs significantly more to maintain that the average car. A 10 year old Mercedes will be pretty expensive to maintain over those two years.
  • british_roverbritish_rover Posts: 8,458
    I bet they will be about the same as the deprecation curve for the merc is about flatened out.

    The merc will cost you more in the long run to maintain though.
  • qbrozenqbrozen Posts: 27,757
    Well, it really depends on miles and original purchase price, but I do think the Merc will be worth more.

    A hyundai just keeps depreciating and depreciating until it hits rock bottom. At only 3 years old, its still got a ways to go. As BR said, the merc has already begun to flatten out, so it will suffer less depreciation at this point.

    '03 F250 7.3, '07 ML63, '08 Charger R/T Daytona; '67 Coronet R/T; '14 Town&Country Limited; '18 BMW X2. 52-car history and counting!

  • badams007badams007 Posts: 7
    I currently drive a 2000 Chevy Blazer

    I will be looking at getting something newer or even perhaps new. I do not need anything this big anymore, but because of where I live, I do need 4WD or AWD.

    I also need something that will be durable as I put a lot of miles on each year...

    and of course cost of ownership is vital (as opposed to just plain purchase price)

    What would you recommend I look at ??

    Thanks

    -Beth
  • qbrozenqbrozen Posts: 27,757
    I only think of one thing when I think of "smaller, low cost, and AWD" = Subaru.

    '03 F250 7.3, '07 ML63, '08 Charger R/T Daytona; '67 Coronet R/T; '14 Town&Country Limited; '18 BMW X2. 52-car history and counting!

  • british_roverbritish_rover Posts: 8,458
    Yup litle subaru Forester or outback if you need some more room for bulky items.
  • theflushtheflush Posts: 100
    How about a Vibe or Matrix AWD? Aren't they around $20K new?
  • jrosalesjrosales Posts: 5
    I have been contemplating a 2003-2004 MB E320. However, i must admit that the number of issues relating to this year and body style have me shying away. I will be buying this car for the long haul, probably more than 200,000 miles. I went to the MB brand due to their reputation of reliability and longevity. I do realize that you will hear people complain about their cars online more than you will hear them sing the praises, but magazine articles have also reported about reliability issues with this year/model. I am also considering a Lexus ES330 (same years), a Toyota Avalon (2005), Hyundai Sonata (2006), Volvo S80 (2005) or Dodge Charger Daytona (2006). Research proves that each of these models have their own demons, and I need to learn which ones i can live with. However, it seems to me that the MB by far has the most complaints, electrical and otherwise. The MB is definitely my favorite however, based on pure emotion! I love the keyless go feature and luxurius interior.

    So, if you were going to spend about $30k, and your main concerns are gas mileage, luxurius interior (i drive a LOT!, over 30K miles per year), reliability and longevity, which would you pick?

    Also, if i do go with the MB, can i buy an extended warranty through MB if i buy the car through a private party? And, do you know if i can request a vehicle maintenance history on a car from a dealer if i buy through a private party or a 3rd party dealership?

    Thanks, i've enjoyed browsing your forum!
    Jodie
  • qbrozenqbrozen Posts: 27,757
    Tough call. My emotions say Charger ... but my practical side fears how much gas money that will suck out of my wallet.

    The Hyundai is right out. Its nowhere near the class of anything else in the list.

    ES330 and Avalon are too boring for my tastes.

    Which only leaves the Benz and Volvo. Better resale value and RWD make me choose the Benz in that comparison. I wouldn't count on it for 200k miles, though.

    '03 F250 7.3, '07 ML63, '08 Charger R/T Daytona; '67 Coronet R/T; '14 Town&Country Limited; '18 BMW X2. 52-car history and counting!

  • british_roverbritish_rover Posts: 8,458
    The chargers shares a lot of bits with the last Gen E-Class so that might be a bad choice.

    I dont even think the gas mileage is that bad on the Charger if you get the right engine. I know the maintance costs will be less then the merc or the volvo.
  • qbrozenqbrozen Posts: 27,757
    The Daytona Charger, to the best of my knowledge, only has the V8. I could be wrong, but I think most problematic parts from the E-class would not carry over to the V8 charger. Like I said, I could be wrong. Its not something I've researched.

    In any case, mileage in the teens at these prices is unthinkable to me.

    '03 F250 7.3, '07 ML63, '08 Charger R/T Daytona; '67 Coronet R/T; '14 Town&Country Limited; '18 BMW X2. 52-car history and counting!

  • british_roverbritish_rover Posts: 8,458
    Ehh I guess selling the kind of vehicles I do any vehicle that gets gas mileage in the mid 20s on the highway looks good.
  • qbrozenqbrozen Posts: 27,757
    hehe.

    '03 F250 7.3, '07 ML63, '08 Charger R/T Daytona; '67 Coronet R/T; '14 Town&Country Limited; '18 BMW X2. 52-car history and counting!

  • british_roverbritish_rover Posts: 8,458
    Speaking of used vehicles best value.

    If you need something big to haul or tow and want a diesel used Excursions are a bargin and a half right now. I think I would cut off at least a few fingers rather then drive one but if it feels a need they are very cheap.

    Had some guy pull up in an excursion to look at rovers on saturday and his first comment was, "oh these don't get that great of gas mileage either." His second comment was, "OMG this this thing is 75,000 dollars it is half the size of my truck."
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