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Unread 11-09-2009, 07:48 PM   #1
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Default I hate looking for a Car...

Seriously...I can't find something that I want for a good price!!

So I'm going to ask, how much should I spend on a USED '1st' car? I was thinking somewhere from 1k to 3k.


Why does shopping for a car have to be so frustrating?
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Unread 11-09-2009, 07:56 PM   #2
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Used first car under 3K? I wouldn't. Trust me, they have problems. My first car was worth about 3 when I got it, and it had some cold oil PSI issues and a dying cylinder. Not to mention fried clutch. My 500 dollar truck, which I got after wrecking the car.....well, let's just say 24 years and 260,000 very rough miles have taken their toll. But I've kept it going, and it seems to run pretty damn good. I only just finished up a routine clutch job in it, and a few months prior a head gasket replacement. Which, to be honest, is fairly routine at that kind of mileage too.


I'd look in the 4-6K range, personally. You can find some damn nice cars in that range...fun, too. Used Miatas tend to fit into that price bracket very well.

IT won't be all that roomy(Probably about the same as your Geo), but you'll still get good MPG. Plus, the handling will amaze you.
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1985 Ford F150 | 4x2 | 300ci OHV inline six | 4-speed OD manual | 310K | No power brakes | Running 100% - It hasn't driven this good in 15 years!

1984 Ford F150 | 4x2 | 300ci six | granny four | 3.55 rear end | 210K | Brakes shot. Rear drums are doing most of the work. Not fit to drive due to that.
1997 Ford Explorer XLT | 4.0L Vulcan V6 | 5-speed automatic | shift-on-the-fly 4WD | 210,000 miles | Running 95% - Needs brakes on all four corners + bald tires
1989 Ford F150 | 300cid six...again | 5-speed | 4x4 | 160K | Needs brakes done as well. Oi!

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Unread 11-09-2009, 07:59 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by TestECull View Post
Used first car under 3K? I wouldn't. Trust me, they have problems. My first car was worth about 3 when I got it, and it had some cold oil PSI issues and a dying cylinder. Not to mention fried clutch. My 500 dollar truck, which I got after wrecking the car.....well, let's just say 24 years and 260,000 very rough miles have taken their toll. But I've kept it going, and it seems to run pretty damn good.


I'd look in the 4-6K range, personally. You can find some damn nice cars in that range...fun, too. Used Miatas tend to fit into that price bracket very well.

IT won't be all that roomy(Probably about the same as your Geo), but you'll still get good MPG. Plus, the handling will amaze you.
I'd say it depends where you live. Here in Indiana, you can get a pretty decent car for 2k - my Regal I've had for a year now cost $1900, my gf's mitsubishi mirage was $650 with some body damage (fixed for $300)...if you live in a fairly rural area I'd say you could probably find something decent in the 2k-3k range.
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Unread 11-09-2009, 08:07 PM   #4
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I'd say it depends where you live. Here in Indiana, you can get a pretty decent car for 2k - my Regal I've had for a year now cost $1900, my gf's mitsubishi mirage was $650 with some body damage (fixed for $300)...if you live in a fairly rural area I'd say you could probably find something decent in the 2k-3k range.

Maybe. I live 20 miles out from civilization, but when I wrecked my little Nissan, my parents drove all the way into Nashville to replace it.

I guess city dwellers can't appreciate a good running vehicle for the body damage.

Most of the cars where I live that are below 3K are rustbuckets, usually. Either that or they have typical old engine/trans problems. Honestly, I can't see how the used car dealers 'round here sleep at night charging 3 grand for a car worth half that. But they do. And they sell well.

The odd gem does exsist, tho. My truck, for example, is actually fairly rust free. Certainly no structural or floor pan rust. And then there's my mom's van which seems to run ok for being 230,000 miles old. Paid 1500 for that, I think.

IF one knows how to look, or is willing to do the repairs themselves, a cheap car can be a good deal. But I wouldn't recommend it as a first car...that needs to be damned reliable.
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My rigs:

1985 Ford F150 | 4x2 | 300ci OHV inline six | 4-speed OD manual | 310K | No power brakes | Running 100% - It hasn't driven this good in 15 years!

1984 Ford F150 | 4x2 | 300ci six | granny four | 3.55 rear end | 210K | Brakes shot. Rear drums are doing most of the work. Not fit to drive due to that.
1997 Ford Explorer XLT | 4.0L Vulcan V6 | 5-speed automatic | shift-on-the-fly 4WD | 210,000 miles | Running 95% - Needs brakes on all four corners + bald tires
1989 Ford F150 | 300cid six...again | 5-speed | 4x4 | 160K | Needs brakes done as well. Oi!

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Unread 11-09-2009, 08:09 PM   #5
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Well I found a 2000 Ford Focus for 1750. I can find decent cars..it's just the rest of the process that irks me. Seeing if the seller is telling the truth...and all that type of thing. I mean, why does it have to be so difficult?
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Spark Plugs, Coil Pack.

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Unread 11-09-2009, 08:32 PM   #6
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In before cluffenstein Focus rage.

I paid $1500 after repairs for my Blazer, $600 before repairs...189k on it when i bought it with a tranny out, and i replaced the alternator, radiator, redid brakes, and a couple other minor things, and the engine still runs VERY strong
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Unread 11-09-2009, 08:37 PM   #7
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I heard nothing about nightmares about the early 2000's focus's fuel pumps going out one after another..

Also.. I like how if you take the intake resonator off, it sounds like you have a supercharger when your in second.. LOL.. good ol supercharger whine (and its LOUD, I can hear it with both windows down and the music blasting!)
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He may have ruined his cylinder walls and compression wings.
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Yeah. Should hold up fine, long as you don't drive like a primate.

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Unread 11-10-2009, 02:41 AM   #8
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Volvo or Toyota for a first car.
I'd say Volvo mainly because of the reliability. Look at the 740/940/960/S70/850 models.
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Unread 11-14-2009, 05:05 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cluffenstein View Post
I heard nothing about nightmares about the early 2000's focus's fuel pumps going out one after another..

Also.. I like how if you take the intake resonator off, it sounds like you have a supercharger when your in second.. LOL.. good ol supercharger whine (and its LOUD, I can hear it with both windows down and the music blasting!)
Are you sure it isn't your second gear? Some cars have certain gears which are whiney, on mine it is third.

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Unread 11-14-2009, 09:06 AM   #10
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this is a DISTINCT supercharger whine, and it goes away when the resonator is back on.
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He may have ruined his cylinder walls and compression wings.
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Yeah. Should hold up fine, long as you don't drive like a primate.

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