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Scruffy - The Janitor
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(Originally posted on: 02-08-10 02:25:30 PM)
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So for the past 8 years or so I've been driving a '97 Geo Prism. This car has treated me pretty well and I only had one major incident with it (electrical fire under the engine...WHEE!!!). Now I've had my second. Long story short I need a new engine and I'm told that with parts and labor it will be just over $2,000 (this includes an oil change and clearing up a corroded battery) to fix it. The tires are about a year and a half old, but I haven't had any brake work done in years. This has made me consider taking my 2 grand and putting it towards a down-payment on something newer. Problem is I know precisely dick about cars.

So my question here is two-fold. First, would I be stupid to not have the car fixed even though it's running up on 125k miles on it? Second, if it is a good idea to invest in a new car, what should I be looking for? I'd like something that has 4 doors and gets good city mileage but can handle long hauls. Again, I haven't really had my finger on the pulse of the car industry, so I don't know what I'm getting myself into here.

I place myself at your mercy, INTL. Please help!
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Reply 1 of 34 (Originally posted on: 02-08-10 03:13:07 PM)
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Geo's weren't really built for stability or long hauls. I somewhat think they are part of the reason why the auto industry is in shambles.

Are you considering getting something new new or a newer used car?

Now is a great time to buy because prices are down. It's a shame you missed cash for clunkers.

I am pretty sure if you buy a car that can pass certain emission criteria you can get a tax break - something else to think about and research.

Carfax is your friend. You can find out reliably what kind of previous owners your potential purchased vehicle had.

I just wrecked my Suzuki XL-7, and I got a Hyundai Elantra as my rental car. I have fallen in love with this vehicle. It gets amazing gas mileage and has superb handling. XM radio comes stock and has inputs for an ipod or any other mobile media device. It's a four door.
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Reply 2 of 34 (Originally posted on: 02-08-10 03:59:58 PM)
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Regardless a used car is still a better deal. Even if it's only one year old.
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Reply 3 of 34 (Originally posted on: 02-08-10 04:03:51 PM)
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Here's my advice: Look for a grandma car. You'll probably be able to get a 2003 Buick with 35,000 miles on it for about 5k. I know MY Buick has treated me OK, and it's worth about 2,500, but it's a 95 park avenue.

It has 51,000 miles on it, 15,000 of which are mine.

Grandma cars are what you're after. You'll be able to tell it's a grandma car because it seems like a new car, and has little mileage.
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Reply 4 of 34 (Originally posted on: 02-08-10 04:24:21 PM)
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I love grandma cars. But you canīt get a '93 Lesabre in good shape for less than 10K, or a '01 Impala for less than 15k, in this god forsaken country.
But look what they are selling, I'd totally tap that if I knew anything about buying cars:

9K:


3.7K

Despair came knocking at my door
and I let her in.
For a while.
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Reply 5 of 34 (Originally posted on: 02-08-10 05:34:19 PM)
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I would try and get them to do a visual inspection of the breaks, break lines, tie rods ect.....

Try and figure out if anything is going to need replacing before you get your next sticker

Additionally, I've heard some really good things about the new Malibus.

I think they came out in 2007 so you might be able to find one with 50k+
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Reply 6 of 34 (Originally posted on: 02-08-10 06:18:55 PM)
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grownup discussion ITT
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Reply 7 of 34 (Originally posted on: 02-08-10 06:47:09 PM)
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2000 bucks is damn near what that car is worth, especially with 125K. It's not worth it to fix it.

Does it run? If it runs at all you can probably sell it for at least 500 bucks.


How much money do you have for a new car? It's hard to give recommendations without knowing how much you're willing to spend. Do you have any other things about it you want besides 4 doors and good mileage?
Scruffy - The Janitor
Alcoholics Anonymous
While anarchy can often turn a humdrum weekend into something unforgettable, eventually the mob must be kept from stealing the conch and killing Piggy.

Pimpin is just a haircut and a shave away!

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Reply 8 of 34 (Originally posted on: 02-08-10 07:46:56 PM)
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Yes, it runs. I managed to drive it to the shop, even though it stalled out on me at times when I came to a stop.

I could scrape together about $4k for a car or a down payment. I'm not sure if I could get an auto loan as I am just in the process of getting a job after having been an unemployed student for the past few months. My credit is pretty decent though.

I'm kinda partial to an automatic. I don't need fancy shit like a tv in there. Something to plug my iPod into would be neat, but not necessary as I have an FM transmitter. Likewise, power windows and locks are things I'm used to not having so they aren't key for me, though I'd imagine they're becoming more standard these days.

I'm leaning towards getting something newer rather than older. This is not to say a brand new car, but perhaps a used model from 2005-2009. Again, I don't know jack shit about the auto industry so I don't know what's what.
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Nickolati
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Reply 9 of 34 (Originally posted on: 02-08-10 08:22:40 PM)
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If I were in the market for a vehicle right now I would get a Charger.
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Guy Tuttle and Ass
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Reply 10 of 34 (Originally posted on: 02-08-10 08:56:25 PM)
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Okay, so definitely don't fix it, put it on craigslist for 800 bucks and write something like "this car runs but there's something wrong, i don't know what it is, sold as is, give me your best offer." Make sure you clean it up a little and let the person talk you down to 500 or 600 bucks.

A newish 4 door with auto and good mileage for under 4000 basically means you're gonna want one of these cars. I don't know if you're gonna be able to find one with low miles for this much, if I were you I'd look at older cars or so with low miles rather than getting a newer car with more miles.

honda accord
honda civic
toyota camry
toyota corolla
toyota echo
ford focus (after 2003)
nissan altima
nissan sentra

i think that basically covers the ones you can expect to be reliable and get good gas mileage.

here's an interesting ad:

http://madison.craigslist.org/cto/1592376587.html

I am pretty sure the person meant to write 193,000 miles but if that car actually has 19,300 miles it's an amazing deal and you should jump on it


hope this helps
Guy Tuttle and Ass
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Reply 11 of 34 (Originally posted on: 02-08-10 08:56:56 PM)
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Goddamn i'm glad I don't drive anymore
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Reply 12 of 34 (Originally posted on: 02-08-10 09:12:54 PM)
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Although they're expensive, I have a used Volvo S70 and I love the shit out of it. If you can find a good deal on one from the 90s and it's well cared for, jump on it--they last forever if you take care of them. I read an article a few months back about a guy who has a Volvo station wagon from the 60s and he's logged over 2.6 million miles on it. Drive it till it breaks, and if you take care of it, it'll never break.
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Reply 13 of 34 (Originally posted on: 02-09-10 01:41:30 AM)
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With $4k down, you can pretty much get a loan anywhere. If you stay around $12-16k, you're going to be golden. About 90% of car deals happen with zero down, so dealers (and especially banks) love cash up front. Negotiate the price AND the interest rate. Dealers are getting paid by banks to sell high-interest loans. Don't go in there and say "I want to pay this much per month." They'll stretch your loan out over 7 years and screw you. Right now is actually a pretty good time to buy a car. Margins on new cars are a lot slimmer than used. If you get something new, expect to receive about $500-1500 off. Used can be anywhere from $1500-$3000 off the window price.

If you want mileage and reliability, get a Honda. Civic does exactly what you want it to do, and the automatics actually get better mileage than the manuals. They all come standard with every safety feature known to man at no extra cost. Oil changes are about every 10,000 miles, even under stress. I wrecked my 2006 Civic after 4 months, got it repaired and sold it for more than I owed on it. If you go this route, make sure you rotate the tires on the recommended intervals, or else they go to shit really fast.

If your shop is replacing the engine, why the hell are they charging you for an oil change? That sounds fishy. I would say don't put money back into the Geo. If you want $500 for it, take it to the dealer and offer it as a trade...$500 is the lowest I've ever seen a dealer offer, and that was something undriveable just to make the deal happen.
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Reply 14 of 34 (Originally posted on: 02-09-10 09:27:12 AM)
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Yay, debt!

Auto loans are the worst investment you can make in anything.

HTH!
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Reply 15 of 34 (Originally posted on: 02-09-10 10:10:10 AM)
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Honda Civics seriously are fucking awesome cars.
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Scruffy - The Janitor
Alcoholics Anonymous
While anarchy can often turn a humdrum weekend into something unforgettable, eventually the mob must be kept from stealing the conch and killing Piggy.

Pimpin is just a haircut and a shave away!

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Reply 16 of 34 (Originally posted on: 02-09-10 11:57:09 AM)
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Nick, I assume the Elantra you drove is a '10? I've been looking into the '08 and it looks pretty decent. Still need to dig around for common problems people have with it and if I can even find a decent deal on one around here...but progress.
An intelligent man is sometimes forced to be drunk to spend time with his fools.
Nickolati
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the cumstain that is left on the wall 11 years after the party has ended

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Reply 17 of 34 (Originally posted on: 02-09-10 12:20:30 PM)
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Quoted from Arnok and Jalad at Tanagra:
Nick, I assume the Elantra you drove is a '10? I've been looking into the '08 and it looks pretty decent. Still need to dig around for common problems people have with it and if I can even find a decent deal on one around here...but progress.


It is a 2009. I love it man.
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Reply 18 of 34 (Originally posted on: 02-09-10 03:57:37 PM)
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Quoted from DrNick:
Yay, debt!

Auto loans are the worst investment you can make in anything.

HTH!


If you're stupid enough to consider an auto loan an investment, I don't know what to tell you. It's hardly an investment if it's guaranteed to depreciate.

If you consider it a living expense in a place with nonexistent public transportation, then maybe you'll understand, but I have doubts considering your track record.
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Reply 19 of 34 (Originally posted on: 02-09-10 05:03:00 PM)
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Quoted from awkward jimmy:
Quoted from DrNick:
Yay, debt!

Auto loans are the worst investment you can make in anything.

HTH!


If you're stupid enough to consider an auto loan an investment, I don't know what to tell you. It's hardly an investment if it's guaranteed to depreciate.

If you consider it a living expense in a place with nonexistent public transportation, then maybe you'll understand, but I have doubts considering your track record.

You 'invest' in bullets even though you know they're gonna get blown out of your gun and will be forever useless after that moment.

But if you use them right (to hunt, maybe), they're involved in a process which makes you money.

-> isn't that what an investment is? Assuming you use your car to make money (drive to and from work, attend to things easily which would otherwise cost you money), then that too can be called an investment.

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Reply 20 of 34 (Originally posted on: 02-09-10 06:31:17 PM)
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But you can drive a car which over its lifetime costs you 50000 dollars and sell it for 10000, or you can drive a car which over its lifetime costs you 25000 and sell it for 8000.
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Reply 21 of 34 (Originally posted on: 02-09-10 06:47:12 PM)
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Assuming you're buying one because it helps to conduct money making/saving activities, both are investments. One is just a (probably) smarter investment (though not necessarily).

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Reply 22 of 34 (Originally posted on: 02-10-10 08:20:33 AM)
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Quote:
Quoted from DrNick:
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Yay, debt!

Auto loans are the worst investment you can make in anything.

HTH!
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------



If you're stupid enough to consider an auto loan an investment, I don't know what to tell you. It's hardly an investment if it's guaranteed to depreciate.

If you consider it a living expense in a place with nonexistent public transportation, then maybe you'll understand, but I have doubts considering your track record.


Not sure what that's supposed to mean. I pay cash for my cars. Cash I save up by not having a car payment. And guess what? Now I don't have to pay interest like a sucker.

Dumbass.
It is company policy not to release this information.
Scruffy - The Janitor
Alcoholics Anonymous
While anarchy can often turn a humdrum weekend into something unforgettable, eventually the mob must be kept from stealing the conch and killing Piggy.

Pimpin is just a haircut and a shave away!

Ballkicks: (+650 / -57)
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Reply 23 of 34 (Originally posted on: 02-10-10 09:45:45 AM)
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Quoted from DrNick:
Quote:
Quoted from DrNick:
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Yay, debt!

Auto loans are the worst investment you can make in anything.

HTH!
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------



If you're stupid enough to consider an auto loan an investment, I don't know what to tell you. It's hardly an investment if it's guaranteed to depreciate.

If you consider it a living expense in a place with nonexistent public transportation, then maybe you'll understand, but I have doubts considering your track record.


Not sure what that's supposed to mean. I pay cash for my cars. Cash I save up by not having a car payment. And guess what? Now I don't have to pay interest like a sucker.

Dumbass.
If only I had $11k cash just lying around omg yah rite fag lol
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Reply 24 of 34 (Originally posted on: 02-10-10 12:37:42 PM)
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Or you can swallow your pride, buy a $500 car and drive it until it dies meanwhile putting back money you would have spent on a car payment.

Next car might be $2000. Then $4000.

Is this really that foreign a concept? I thought this was standard personal finance...
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