Author Topic: Used Car Decision  (Read 2362 times)

mastrr

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Used Car Decision
« on: December 23, 2015, 02:33:38 PM »
I'm in the market for a car and I have a couple that I am looking at.  I will be using my car mostly as a commuter and have a 30 mile round trip for work.

1. 2014 Honda Civic with 40,000 miles for $12,000.  Car will be purchased from a rental company.  The advantage is the known reliability of a Civic and knowing where the car came from.

2. 2000 Saturn SL2 with 40,000 miles for $4,000.  Car will be purchased from a used car dealer.  Car fax mentions it is a one owner / no accident car.  It looks to be in very nice condition like it was garage kept.  However, there is the unknown of where this car actually came from and the reliability of the vehicle is more of a wildcard.

While the choice seems obvious, I also don't want to be in a spot where I am constantly taking in a car to be repaired (time = money).  One thing I plan to do on both cars is to have a thorough used car inspection.  If anyone has experience with Saturns let me know.  Which one would you choose?

honeybbq

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Re: Used Car Decision
« Reply #1 on: December 23, 2015, 02:37:53 PM »
I'd by the Honda, personally.

Honda >> Saturn in terms of quality.

Even though the Saturn mileage is low, some items need to be replaced regardless of the mileage and due to age. (like timing belts? At least this is what I have been told but maybe it's a scam).

Safety standards have changed a lot in 15 years. I'd get a more modern car for that reason alone. I'm guessing the Saturn doesn't have airbags.

onlykelsey

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Re: Used Car Decision
« Reply #2 on: December 23, 2015, 02:52:13 PM »
what are their respective gas efficiencies?   

mastrr

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Re: Used Car Decision
« Reply #3 on: December 23, 2015, 03:10:11 PM »
what are their respective gas efficiencies?

city / highway

Saturn - 27/38
Civic - 30/40

RWD

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Re: Used Car Decision
« Reply #4 on: December 23, 2015, 03:57:33 PM »
Is there a third option? I personally wouldn't buy a former rental car.

Making Cookies

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Re: Used Car Decision
« Reply #5 on: December 23, 2015, 11:54:11 PM »
The Civic likely has a timing belt that needs replacement or else (bent valves, interference engine). My extended family has bought a couple/three former rentals. All of them had their issues. Remember some folks rent a car and drive it like they stole it.

Kstatus

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Re: Used Car Decision
« Reply #6 on: December 29, 2015, 01:28:05 PM »
Newer civics run off of timing chains that do not need to be replaced.  A lot of Saturns that I have seen often have bad piston rings or head gaskets which is an issue I would never want to deal with.

Personally I would get the civic, but I would find an older model for less money.

JLee

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Re: Used Car Decision
« Reply #7 on: December 29, 2015, 01:35:18 PM »
The general consensus on late 90's Saturns is that they're extremely cheap and easy to work on. My former roommate bought one (1997, I think) for $1500. He's done a few maintenance items, but it's been a great car.

Airbags have been mandatory for passenger cars since September 1997.

I would probably be shopping in the $4-8k range from a private party seller.