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Stone  (Level: 35.0 - Posts: 259)
Sat, 1st Nov '08 2:19 PM


Looking for input, suggestions, etc. on used cars. I have done a lot of research but would like to hear from any owners of the following models, please. Nissan Versa, Toyota Matrix, Kio Rondo, Kia Rio5. I presently have a jeep and have enjoyed it for the past ten years with minimal problems. However, the thought of gas prices jumping again has me looking to a more economical vehicle. I did not include the Honda Fit and Civic in my list as these are already at the top of my list.
Also, any thoughts on using buying services? I do not have the strength to bargain anymore.
There is a new Versa coming out around 11/18 that will have a base of $9,990. I am hoping that will help decrease the prices of the used ones that have more options.
Thank you for any help you can give. Claudette

Felix  (Level: 109.3 - Posts: 2498)
Sat, 1st Nov '08 2:24 PM

On any trip over 100 miles count the number of Ford Taurus' on the side of the road.

Aquamar  (Level: 187.1 - Posts: 926)
Sat, 1st Nov '08 3:07 PM

My personal choice is Toyota any Toyota. I have been buying them for years and found them to be very reliable. I know they hold their value and its hard to find a cheap used one. I have an old Sienna and Camry and I mean old. Never any problems except oil changes and tires. My Sienna is pushing two hundred thousand miles and I would drive it from coast to coast with confidence. I guess I sound like a walking talking ad for Toyota but they have proved their reliability to me. Don't be afraid to haggle the price because people expect you to do just that.

Koota  (Level: 189.4 - Posts: 2123)
Sat, 1st Nov '08 3:15 PM

I wish I lived near you because I would offer to buy your Jeep. I drove one for many years and absolutely loved it. Right now, I'm driving a $400 Cadillac that we bought cheap because it had electrical problems that Fred was able to fix.

I used to own a 1978 Toyota Corolla, and it was a real trooper. It got great gas mileage, I could turn on a dime, and I could park it anywhere. I traded it for the Jeep.

Be ready for the change, though, if you switch from driving the Jeep to a smaller car. You're used to sitting up high where you can see traffic in front of you. You'll sit much lower in a compact car, and everyone will pull out in front of you like they don't presently do in your jeep. Trust me on this.

Pennwoman  (Level: 163.1 - Posts: 2475)
Sat, 1st Nov '08 3:25 PM

I have had 4 "wrecked and rebuilt" cars and swear by them -- and sorry Felix, but 2 of them where Taurus' and I have had zero problem with them -- and my first Taurus, got swamped on the way home by hurricaine Ivan -- got it dried out, ran like a champ -- until it was totaled by a Neon, on a snow day. Loved that car.

Felix  (Level: 109.3 - Posts: 2498)
Sat, 1st Nov '08 4:03 PM

I've had two Taurui (?) as well. One was backed over by a semi the other the transmission failed. My point is when you drive a certain make of car you'll notice that car. To this day I still see a lot of them disabled. My last two used cars have been Volvos. Good mileage, comfortable, safe and dependable. A tuneup is more than my house payment.

Loveland  (Level: 55.2 - Posts: 521)
Sat, 1st Nov '08 8:46 PM

The Matix and Pontiac Vibe are a joint Toyota-GM venture. I've heard a lot of people are very pleased with their Vibes.

Lisap369  (Level: 61.1 - Posts: 992)
Sat, 1st Nov '08 8:57 PM

If you are going for something smaller and very gas efficient... the Chevy Cavalier would be a great choice. I had one and loved the g/mi, they're fairly inexpensive for maintenance and my mechanic once said that they were practically indestructable.. they rarely break down.

I'm driving a Malibu now.. and LOVE it!.. had an Alero in between and HATED it!

Donden  (Level: 112.5 - Posts: 2127)
Sat, 1st Nov '08 9:38 PM

Most all of the cars mentioned can be reliable. The trick is to find a used car that has had good maintenance. Kinda hard to do when you buy from a dealer or "Honest Willie" across town. I have a friend who drove a Saturn for 150,000+ miles and then sold it to the mechanic who did the service on it. He still drives it trouble free. Another thing to watch for is flood cars. Regardless of the laws on salvage cars these turkeys are showing up on the lots. Recent weather in the Midwest and Louisiana/Texas have created a real opportunity for unloading these crates. Lotsa luck.

Bbear  (Level: 168.0 - Posts: 2291)
Sun, 2nd Nov '08 1:44 PM

I have had good luck buying cars from car rental places such as Budget. They sell their cars cheap when they get around 40,000 miles on them, have been well maintained and are mostly driven by mature sane adults.

Alvandy  (Level: 242.1 - Posts: 7727)
Mon, 3rd Nov '08 12:41 AM

A great source is the very reputable magazine/ web site CONSUMER REPORTS.

It will be worth your investment of a few dollars to purchase their "Buyer's Guide /2008 issue". There is a whole section about reliability of automobiles.

I'm a long time subscriber and also have subscribed to their Consumer Reports .org website. Perhaps I can check into specific makes/models if you send me a private message.

Also, before buying any used car- get a Carfax vehicle report. Reputable dealers will provide one for the car for free., or you can purchase reports. Well worth the trouble!!


Wordster  (Level: 167.7 - Posts: 938)
Mon, 3rd Nov '08 5:09 PM

I had a Toyota Corolla which went on for miles. There was over 170K on the clock when I sold it! I saw it about a year later, still going. Toyotas are definitely very reliable but parts were not as cheap as some models. Yep, cars will pull out in front of you, even the Jeep!

Fudypatootie  (Level: 207.7 - Posts: 1302)
Mon, 3rd Nov '08 9:50 PM

I bought a "program" car from a local dealer. It was a Chevy Corsica with 19,000 miles on it. 12 years later, I finally got rid of it and it had 250,000 miles on it and still ran.

Good luck!

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