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Suggest Me A Car Under $4K

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#1 Tech Star

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Posted 17 July 2010 - 22:20

I really need a car for school and for work due to the fact that my current one (1993 Toyota Pickup) needs repairs and instead of putting money to repair it I would rather put it towards a newer and better car. What do you suggest for under $4K in the USA? I need a car that can get places and can go at least 65-75 miles an hour on the HWY and maybe newer than 1997.

I have been looking at cars on Craigslist, the only one that has caught my attention is a 2001-2002 Toyota Solara, but those are going for around $3.5K+. Are Toyota Solara's good, namely the 2001-2002 ones?

If you can suggest me a car I would really appreciate it. :)

#2 Konstanov


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Posted 17 July 2010 - 22:23

An older Jeep would probably serve you best and are easy to maintain, as long as you can get one around 100K miles, as the transmissions tend to crap out around 180-200k. Although you could probably get one from a scrapyard for cheap.

#3 Quattrone


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Posted 17 July 2010 - 22:26

Toyota Corola, Camry or Nissan Altima, never trust used American cars.

#4 Sikh


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Posted 17 July 2010 - 22:32

Hard to suggest a car since your looking for used/budget.

I would say a cavalier because they are built strong. Ive seen people run them down with no oil and everything and those cars still go. Dont sound pretty but if you can maintain the car, they go forever and there cheap. You can fnd a 02 Cavy 2dooor with 75k miles or higher for an easy $3-4k i believe.

But it just depends what you find at a used dealer or craigslist, or etc.

I got my saturn 02 for 2k, which was a steal because the car is worth 7k. Its a stick with 72k miles on it. Funny thing is, the guy thought the transmission was going on it and just wnted to get rid of it. I had an idea what the problem was, but wasnt sure. Took it to trans mechanic, he looked and found that the throw out bearings werent adjusted or lubed(i forget which one), but since the transmission/clutch/etc has been in there since 2002 he went ahead and did a quick lub/adjustment and done. Car was shifting like normal again.

When I went in it for a ride intially, it wasnt slipping, it just wasnt going into gears all that easy, actually require grinding and a lot of force to get it in gear. Now, 2 years later almost(august) car runs beautiful.

SO if you get lucky, you can get any car for 4k, just keep looking.

#5 rajputwarrior


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Posted 17 July 2010 - 22:58

don't buy american... especially for around 4k. solara's are good cars. if you are into the fast and furious type of cars 240sx, integras and preludes can be found for around that price.

but if anything, don't buy american...

#6 wv@gt


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Posted 17 July 2010 - 23:03

have a look on craigslist, set your max price to 4000 and see what you find
for that price I would not suggest american, but rather honda civic or accord, toyota corolla or nissan altima.
my sister got a 1999 Infinity G20 (luxury altima) last year for $4,000 and it has 90,000 miles on it. just needed new tires

#7 Gamerhomie


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Posted 17 July 2010 - 23:31

Listen to these guys. My 97 Corrola has over 202,000 miles on it and it's doing fine as ever. Then again, this car has been cared for as good as it could have been, so it's always dependent on how the previous owners treated it.

#8 OP Tech Star

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Posted 18 July 2010 - 00:22

I am going to stay away from American cars for this one. On craigslist I saw a couple of cars that I liked under 4K.

A 2002 Mitsubishi Lancer OZ Rally Edition ($3300), 2001 and 2000 Nissan Maxima (4000 and 3800), 2001+ Altimas that I liked ($3500+), and one 2000 Jeep Grand Cherokee ($4000).

What do you think about these cars including the Toyota Solara?

#9 Argote


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Posted 18 July 2010 - 00:26

The Nissan Maxima is pretty nice, I'd check those out.

#10 revvo


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Posted 18 July 2010 - 00:42

For a daily driver with 4K budget, if I wanted fun I'd get a Lexus SC300 (Toyota Soarer). If I wanted something very reliable, a toyota corolla or honda accord.

#11 rajputwarrior


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Posted 18 July 2010 - 03:07

accord would be a good choice. but solora is good as well. those were good times for toyota. you know? before toyotas sucked...

#12 Quattrone


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Posted 18 July 2010 - 13:53

The Nissan Maxima and Altima are the best choices in that list.

#13 rathefeare


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Posted 18 July 2010 - 16:58

Miata is an option if you want the drive wheels on the correct end of the car aka rear wheel drive. Since you are in California (north or south?) that is probably a good choice and convertible in your environment is only a bonus. Not sure how mechanical you are but they are easy to maintain and fix as well. The large volume of them made means parts are always available in the junk yard and the aftermarket is huge as well.

I did want to add that the shock of moving from a pickup to a miata will be a bit much as the volume of cargo space will shrink quite drastically with this choice though the people carrying capacity will still be 2. Decide how much gear you need to haul.

You said newer than 97 but for a cheap miata as well as a few other cheap cars if you plan on doing the work yourself you will want one prior to OBD 2 that is 96. Not that OBD 2 is that difficult though. If you are unwilling to to deal with old car troubles than 97 seems a strange year to chose as an 01 would have about the same chance as well as a 89. Why is 97 your cut off?

I have a 95 with 190k miles as my main daily driver that I still track occasionally and a 94 that competes in a series. I have a pretty strong 90 RX-7 as well so the fact that I usually chose to daily drive and track my miata should tell all you need to know about that.

#14 Sethos


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Posted 18 July 2010 - 17:02

A rule of thumb around here; looking to buy used? Buy Toyota. They make sturdy, reliable cars and a well-kept used Toyota will last you forever.

#15 Reverend Spam

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Posted 18 July 2010 - 17:07

"Suggest yourself"...... Whats with people saying "Suggest me a ..." "Choose me a ....."
Seriously, is there a please in there somewhere? I dont know where that type of phrase started, but it really annoys me.

At any rate.... Cars for under 4 k? Well, ur either gonna end up with a really old, (conceivably) more efficient honda/toyota (i say really old because those cars take forever to depreciate in value) Or a newer, more gas guzzling car that has a higher depreciation rate, like a Pontiac or something... Or you could get lucky and find someone on craigslist that is asking for way under blue book. Don't count on it though.