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Old 08-24-2022, 09:06 AM   #1 (permalink)
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TBD - '17 Toyota Corolla LE
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In the market for a new car...

I need to tap into the collective's mind. I'm in the market for a new car; the kids are of driving age and I'll be giving them the Corolla. This happening in the ****tiest car markets in ages...

I only have a few parameters:

>Car has to be reliable
>Lowest .cd
>$9500 budget

I've recently been hyper-focused on the Toyota Prius. Why? Toyota reliability and ultra-slippery .cd (.26-.25, Gen dependent). But what I'm finding at the 9500 price point (to no surprise) are cars with 175K+ mileage. 175K and up...and I mean UP...granted, it seems the car can run and run...

But, what else should I be considering? Are there any diamonds in the rough I should also be looking at?

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Old 08-24-2022, 05:08 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Passat TDI Wagon - '97 VW Passat Wagon TDI
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I see a lot of Priuses come up on the Government auction website. These are fleet vehicles for office personnel and they sell them when they hit a certain mileage, like 150k miles regardless of how well they run. Check your state road agency, they seem to buy the most hybrids.

They seem to be going for about $6000 - $8000 at auction around here for the 2006 - 2009 Prius range. Government fleet vehicles are usually very well maintained and you can usually get the full maintenance record before bidding. If there is anything wrong with it, they give full disclosure. But...you can't test drive them.

I would watch out for the ones that look they have been sitting for over a year or two . As they may have had parts taken by the fleet mechanics for other running vehicles.

Many of these auction vehicles have dead 12V batteries, but not a big deal.
97 Passat TDI Wagon
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306k miles
Scan Gauge II
full belly pan
26 gallon tank
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Old 08-24-2022, 05:25 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Depends on your area, our GSA + Local gov tend to only sell scissors lifts, large diesel equipment, broken vehicles and SUVs

Here is a winner
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Old 08-24-2022, 10:42 PM   #4 (permalink)
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ND Miata - '15 Mazda MX-5 Special Package
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When I was growing up, I wish I knew someone who had been gifted a car. I finally got my first (an F150) when my father went to prison and I needed to pick it up from impound.

As for what you might look for, the Ioniq is the class leader in economy. You could almost pick up a PHEV Ioniq prior to Covid for that price, but they've nearly doubled. I expect if you can wait a year or three they'll quickly drop back below 10k.

Both the Accord and (3rd gen) Insight hybrid are great picks and ought to be ballpark Toyota reliable. Their new hybrid system has near zero wear parts, and uses a small and inexpensive lithium battery.

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