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Old 09-30-2019, 05:25 PM   #1 (permalink)
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My Metro died. What car should I get? Thinking Camry/Accord appliance.

[Admin note - topic split from I was always a "car guy". Crossovers & SUV's are ending that. ]

---

I used to be a huge car nut, still am a little bit. After my Metro puked on Friday I found myself drooling over an assortment of Lexus cars with the 2JZ inline six (same motor as the MK4 Supra that is so famous), but after realizing the car only gets ~20 mpg on Premium and less on regular fuel, the interest fizzled out. Right now I'm favoring a 1996 Camry, 4-cyl, automatic. Nothing but a appliance car but at least I should be able to keep the same work car for more than 6 months.

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Old 09-30-2019, 06:55 PM   #2 (permalink)
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If you bump up to 2003, the Camry gets a timing chain. Before that year, belt replacement is every 90k. They'll snap at 100k, but at least the engine is non-interference.
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Old 09-30-2019, 10:29 PM   #3 (permalink)
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That would be the same generation as Mom's 2006 Camry which has only had a couple of repairs.
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Old 10-01-2019, 09:58 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Quote:
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That would be the same generation as Mom's 2006 Camry which has only had a couple of repairs.
This is exactly why I'm looking at Camrys. I'm tired of buying $500 cars and wondering every day when it's going to die. I've set myself a $2000 budget for a car (almost record high for me, at least since entering adult life), and hopefully that will get a car that isn't totally clapped out.

Some day I'll get back into my enthusiasm for non-toaster cars, but I'm afraid they'll all be gone by then.
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Old 10-01-2019, 10:10 AM   #5 (permalink)
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But ... but... but! Don't hamstring yourself with an automatic!


You Know You're an Ecomodder (or just a generic car guy) When: you're walking down the street as someone pulls away from a stop in a plain jane 2000-2006 Camry sedan and you realize it's got a manual transmission! Unicorn sighting! Actually happened to me this summer.
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Old 10-01-2019, 11:29 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Quote:
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But ... but... but! Don't hamstring yourself with an automatic!


You Know You're an Ecomodder (or just a generic car guy) When: you're walking down the street as someone pulls away from a stop in a plain jane 2000-2006 Camry sedan and you realize it's got a manual transmission! Unicorn sighting! Actually happened to me this summer.
I'd really prefer a manual, I keep getting the argument from my wife that "if you get a manual then I can't drive it." I'll probably insist on a manual anyway. Was looking at a 92 Accord with a manual the other day, looks to be in great shape other than one crack in the windshield, $1200
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Old 10-01-2019, 12:30 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MetroMPG View Post
But ... but... but! Don't hamstring yourself with an automatic!


You Know You're an Ecomodder (or just a generic car guy) When: you're walking down the street as someone pulls away from a stop in a plain jane 2000-2006 Camry sedan and you realize it's got a manual transmission! Unicorn sighting! Actually happened to me this summer.
On another similar note, I was in the city with my family a couple weeks ago in our odyssey, when a newish BMW with an I6 pulled up next to me at the stop light. I could hear that he didn't have a stock exhaust on there (not annoying, it was very tastefully modified), and so I cracked my wife's window just a little in the hopes of hearing a little bit of launch. He turned right on the red shortly after and to my surprise I was filled with childlike glee as not only did it sound tremendous, it was a manual trans besides.

My wife said I'm an idiot, all the while my 3 year old was in the back seat and just as excited as I was.
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Old 10-01-2019, 01:05 PM   #8 (permalink)
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I'd not get anything older than 1996, simply because I find having OBDII to be very useful in troubleshooting. Camry's with timing belts will absolutely snap them right around 100k miles. My dad has had 3 break between the 1996 and 1998 Camry's. 3 were replaced before breaking. He's now fixing the 1998 after it was abused by his friend, and it has over 300k on it now. Needs some front end work, the water pump wasn't replaced by his friend (he's a mechanic, why didn't he do the water pump?) last time the belt snapped, so that's leaking.

The 1996 was totalled by my sister when she rolled it 5 times on a straight road very familiar to her, on a clear day. She accidentally drifted toward the center line, over corrected into the soft shoulder, then corrected violently back to the left putting the car sideways. That one was fantastic and probably would have gone over 300k trouble free miles.

Anyhow, Edmunds says a 2003 Camry with 192,000 miles is worth $1,400 in clean condition private party.

That '92 Accord is way overpriced. Doesn't matter what condition it's in; it's worth $500.

Never pay asking price. Always lowball several people and a few of them will counter. Work those counters until you get a price you're willing to pay.
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Old 10-01-2019, 03:13 PM   #9 (permalink)
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What are your needs in a vehicle? Any utility? Maximum fuel economy?

I'm very fond of the Fit lately. My partner's will deliver 45-50mpg during good weather with zero hypermiling techniques, and you could probably close the hatch with a full sized washer and dryer in the back.

Otherwise, I'm a huge proponent (obviously) of the G1 Honda Insight. 2000-2006 are stupid reliable sans a few quirks (2nd gear downshift grind) and there are examples exceeding 600,000 miles with the factory engine and transmission, still delivering 70mpg+.
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Old 10-01-2019, 03:19 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Shaneajanderson View Post
I'd really prefer a manual, I keep getting the argument from my wife that "if you get a manual then I can't drive it." I'll probably insist on a manual anyway. Was looking at a 92 Accord with a manual the other day, looks to be in great shape other than one crack in the windshield, $1200
Then teach her! If she refuses, that's her problem then. I am up to 18 people taught to drive stick now.

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