CarForum.net - Car Forums, Automotive News and Community
Home Gallery Register Calendar Members List

Go Back   CarForum.net - Car Forums, Automotive News and Community > General Car Discussion > General Automotive Discussion

Reply
LinkBack Thread Tools
Unread 01-26-2010, 04:25 AM   #1
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Posts: 12
Rep: 10 nitd_kim is on a distinguished road
Default First Car

Hey, I will have budget of 2000-2700 for a car in March and I was wondering where I should be looking to buy a car. I live in Orange County, California. I was thinking going through craigslist once a day a week before planned purchase date. Is Ebay a good option?

Is there any website that is particularly good?

I'm looking to buy cars like these:

Miata
Eclipse

I'm open to other car suggestions.

Any tips on car buying and what to be aware of when buying used car is very welcomed!

Last edited by nitd_kim; 01-27-2010 at 02:05 AM.

nitd_kim is offline  
Reply With Quote
Unread 01-26-2010, 03:02 PM   #2
Junior Member
 
Nascarboy's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: Toronto, ON
Posts: 23
Rep: 10 Nascarboy is on a distinguished road
Default

240sx ftw!
__________________
1996 Nissan 240SX S14 | 5-speed Manual | SR20DET Engine | Daily driver/weekend racer

1997 Acura 1.6EL | 4-speed Auto | Stock D16Y8 | Secondary Car

Nascarboy is offline  
Reply With Quote
Unread 01-26-2010, 05:13 PM   #3
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Posts: 12
Rep: 10 nitd_kim is on a distinguished road
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Nascarboy View Post
240sx ftw!
are they reliable? how much would parts and repairs cost in comparison to the cheap Toyota and Honda repairs.

nitd_kim is offline  
Reply With Quote
Unread 01-26-2010, 05:13 PM   #4
Spah sappin' mah susp!
 
Kenny McCormick's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: Earth...I think
Posts: 3,271
Rep: 96 Kenny McCormick will become famous soon enough
Default

OF the three you chose, Miata. They're cheap, they're reliable, they're FUN to drive, they're cheap to insure, they're not common ricer targets, and did I mention how fun they were to drive?

Get it with a stickshift, by the way. An automatic in a Miata is a travesty.


The Eclipse/3000GT are going to be stupidly expensive to insure. They're also ricer magnets, you'll have every half-wit in a molested Civic trying to run you, and you'll have every cop in your city watching you like a hawk. Some people will even call you a ricer simply because you drive them. I would seriously reconsider getting them for a first car.

As for tips when buying used...test drive. Listen to the engine, pay attention to the gauges, and take careful note of how the clutch feels. It should begin to engage no more than two inches off the floor, if it does it's worn and will need to be replaced soon. Ideally it should engage only half an inch off the floor. You should also be able to feel the clutch begin to release within two inches of pushing on the pedal, again if it's more than that it's needing a replacement, and ideal is about an inch or so. The shifting should be smooth, and in your choices, very quick and easy. It should stay in gear. The car should track straight, the brakes work smoothly and efficiently, and the gauges/lights need to work. I'd also recommend not buying anything with bad seatbelts, and if the airbags are popped, make sure the frame repairs were done at a reputable shop.

The oil pressure gauge should be no less than halfway up the range when warmed up, if it's a real-time gauge(Varies with engine RPM), no less than 12PSI warmed and at idle. If the engine has a FRAM oil filter, going as low as 8PSI will be normal as FRAMs are incredibly restrictive. Don't use them, by the way. Going down the road should show between 35 and 45PSI. Battery should either show 13.5-14V, or if it's an amp gauge, slight charge. Temperature should not get over halfway up the gauge(This leaves plenty of headroom for it to get hot under the collar, if it's already near the end of the scale it's overheating). If the idiot lights are on, make sure you get the codes read, autozone does this for you. If it's something piddly and the engine runs fine, I wouldn't sweat it much.

A carfax report is only 20 bucks or so, and you may find someone here on CFN that can run one for you, so get the VIN and run it through Carfax. Post back here if anything looks odd, either with the Carfax or the car itself. Hopefully, one of us will be able to help ya

Edit: 240SX...depends. A stock 5speed will be quite reliable, but good luck finding one in your price range. You're likely to either find wrecks or riced up wrecks, neither of which will be reliable. Part prices will be about the same for anything that's been discussed so far.
__________________
Tired Iron ain't got no time to wear out...

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!

Last edited by Kenny McCormick; 01-26-2010 at 05:18 PM.

Kenny McCormick is offline  
Reply With Quote
Unread 01-26-2010, 05:35 PM   #5
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Posts: 12
Rep: 10 nitd_kim is on a distinguished road
Default

I was leaning heavily towards the eclipse since they're 4seat coupe and they seem to be reliable vehicles and i would be able to get 1996-1998 models for under 3k.

Miata on the other side seem to be generally well maintained compared to other cars but the biggest drawback is limited seating. I would however enjoy the low cost of insurance since I'm going to be a first time driver. I would get a Miata for sure but 2seats... I have until March to decide which car is best for me but I'll keep researching.

Well, upon reading/researching, I find that the 3000gt is just an expensive, and hard to maintain car. plus its more expensive than the eclipse. So, 3000gt is off my list of cars I would consider.

nitd_kim is offline  
Reply With Quote
Unread 01-26-2010, 06:53 PM   #6
Community Director
 
Mike's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: Minneapolis, MN
Posts: 7,603
Rep: 153 Mike has a spectacular aura aboutMike has a spectacular aura about
Default

Yeah, 3000GT (also known as Dodge Stealth) is a bad idea. But Eclipse is also not a good car to buy for your first one. Where do you live? If you get snow, you won't want to drive a Miata in it. RWD + tiny car = you and the ditch will be on a first name basis, and the tow truck will also know you by name.
__________________
"He shouted: 'You've won! Didn't you know?' I didn't, and it's about the nicest thing I've ever been told" -Bruce McLaren, 1968 Belgian Grand Prix
Read the rules! | DO NOT REPLY TO SPAM
2009 Pontiac G8 GT - 6.0L, 6AT - 95k miles | 1994 Chevy Blazer K5 - 350, 5MT - 140k miles | 2006 Mazda 3 S sedan - 2.3L, 5MT - 130k miles
Wife's Car: 2013 Chevy Volt - 70k miles
Bikes: 1979 Yamaha XS 750 | 1985 Honda Sabre 700

Mike is offline Mike's Gallery  
Reply With Quote
Unread 01-26-2010, 07:29 PM   #7
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Posts: 12
Rep: 10 nitd_kim is on a distinguished road
Default

i live in southern california so we never get snow here. if i even go to the mountain to ski/snowboard, i'd be riding in a friend's car since miata is a 2seater right? no problems there with snow.

I have a feeling that most eclipses were misused/abused and would have problems down the road if i buy it, but my personal opinion says it is better to buy 95-98 eclipse for 2500 dollars instead of an old civic or toyota for 2000. plus it looks better and build quality is superior too? This is a newb talking so please correct me.

nitd_kim is offline  
Reply With Quote
Unread 01-26-2010, 08:18 PM   #8
Community Director
 
Mike's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: Minneapolis, MN
Posts: 7,603
Rep: 153 Mike has a spectacular aura aboutMike has a spectacular aura about
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by nitd_kim View Post
i live in southern california so we never get snow here. if i even go to the mountain to ski/snowboard, i'd be riding in a friend's car since miata is a 2seater right? no problems there with snow.

I have a feeling that most eclipses were misused/abused and would have problems down the road if i buy it, but my personal opinion says it is better to buy 95-98 eclipse for 2500 dollars instead of an old civic or toyota for 2000. plus it looks better and build quality is superior too? This is a newb talking so please correct me.
Good. Here in MN nobody in their right minds would be caught driving a Miata during Winter...i've seen one this winter and during summer i see a couple every day. They get parked real quick when the snow flies.
If i were you i wouldn't go soley toward imports. Check Craigslist for Cavaliers, they're cheap to buy (95-98 or so for $1500 pretty easy), cheap to drive (30+ mpg), SUPER cheap to insure (not classified as a sports car, not overly powerful [four cylinder ftw], and just your typical commuter car), and cheap to fix (one of the most common four bangers on the road today). I have several friends with Cavies and they never fail hardly. They just keep tickin. Sometimes people rule out american cars as everyone thinks Hondas and Toyotas are so much better but remember some american cars are very reliable. I think a late 90s Cavalier would serve you for a long time, and very cheaply so.

EDIT: Bam: http://losangeles.craigslist.org/sfv...572115511.html
__________________
"He shouted: 'You've won! Didn't you know?' I didn't, and it's about the nicest thing I've ever been told" -Bruce McLaren, 1968 Belgian Grand Prix
Read the rules! | DO NOT REPLY TO SPAM
2009 Pontiac G8 GT - 6.0L, 6AT - 95k miles | 1994 Chevy Blazer K5 - 350, 5MT - 140k miles | 2006 Mazda 3 S sedan - 2.3L, 5MT - 130k miles
Wife's Car: 2013 Chevy Volt - 70k miles
Bikes: 1979 Yamaha XS 750 | 1985 Honda Sabre 700

Last edited by Mike; 01-26-2010 at 08:20 PM.

Mike is offline Mike's Gallery  
Reply With Quote
Unread 01-26-2010, 08:50 PM   #9
Hammond Hand Luggage
 
cluffenstein's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: Chicago IL
Posts: 2,704
Rep: 61 cluffenstein will become famous soon enough
Default

keyword.. SOME American cars
__________________
Quote:
Originally Posted by TestEcull
He may have ruined his cylinder walls and compression wings.
Quote:
Originally Posted by wierdo124
Yeah. Should hold up fine, long as you don't drive like a primate.

cluffenstein is offline cluffenstein's Gallery  
Reply With Quote
Unread 01-26-2010, 09:15 PM   #10
Now accepting bribes.
 
lautinjr's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: Currently Las Vegas
Posts: 4,311
Rep: 193 lautinjr has a spectacular aura aboutlautinjr has a spectacular aura about
Default

My Cavy is for sale I'm in Vegas you could drive to pick it up I want 3750. It has a long list of maint. and some upgrades and looks 100% better then that ****. Look at my Album.
Nevermind no body pics in album check treads I started under statistics lots of pics are posted.

She has a 1" drop, 18" light wieght wheels, BFG tires, new struts and strut tower braces, intake mild sound system, poly mounts (not installed yet), Ebc front brakes installed (big brake kit short calipers not installed yet), New timing chain with harmonic balancer, belt, gaskets front seal, water pump, light wieght flywheel (not installed yet), and clean interior.
__________________
Please help reduce our mini van population and wear condoms!

Last edited by lautinjr; 01-26-2010 at 09:21 PM.

lautinjr is offline lautinjr's Gallery  
Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On



All times are GMT -5. The time now is 03:44 AM.

Shogun Interactive Development Copyright 2015 Shogun Interactive Development. All rights reserved.