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Old 02-07-2013, 04:07 PM   #1
bncinwv
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Vehicle shopping again (The search is over!)

Youngest one has turned 16 and is just about ready to take her drivers test. I have been internet shopping for awhile and I think I have settled in on a used Toyota, either a Camry or Corolla. I have never had either, (domestic only - but Toyota has a plant engine plant just down the river), but research shows they are reliable vehicles. I am trying to keep the price down by extending to the 100,000 - 110,000 range and believe these four cylinders should be good for twice that. Any confirming MOCers out there have real world experience and real world mileage reports?
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Old 02-07-2013, 04:17 PM   #2
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I've had 4 Toyotas. 3 Pickups and one Camry. Bought them all new and averaged about 125-150k miles on each when I sold them. Had almost zero problems. As a matter of fact the only thing I can think of is an alternator in the Camry. 3 were 4 bangers. One pickup was a 6.

A friend of mine had a Toyota Pickup... 4 banger as well. He did same day courier service in NYC so it went thru hell and back.

He had over 475k on it. His oil light came on and he thought it was a bad sensor and kept on trucking on the NJ Turnpike. A short while later when it seized up he got his answer. He got his moneys worth out of it.

If its been decently maintained, they are great vehicles with lots of mileage potential.
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Old 02-07-2013, 06:20 PM   #3
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Had good luck buying one for our daughter until she decided that it wasn't cool enough and traded it off. She wishes she had it back more and more as the years go by.
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Old 02-08-2013, 02:02 AM   #4
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I have had Toyota's since 1978. I had given my daughter my 1978 Toyota Camry with 90,000 miles on it, (when she was in college) and she got rid of it when she had over 300,000 miles on it. (this was a 4 cylinder)

I bought a 1987 Toyota Camry and had it for 12 years. Have had very few problems with them. I now have a RAV4 and really like that too.

They are a safe and reliable car. Lots of luck with the car shopping.
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Old 02-08-2013, 02:13 AM   #5
1retired06
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Toyota has consistently had a great reputation. My Toyota Tacoma had 120K on it before I sold it, with no major repairs
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Old 02-08-2013, 02:16 AM   #6
WeBeFulltime
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Bought our daughter a new Toyota Paseo her second semester of college. It saw her through college, med school, and a 3 year residency. That's about 11 years and I'm not sure of miles, but it was a bunch. If memory serves me, it only had to have front brakes once or twice and regular maintenance. Great car.

I also have owned a 1978 and a 1982 Toyota truck, both bought new. Both were very good trucks for the type.
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Old 02-08-2013, 03:59 AM   #7
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Bingo, another Toyota Camry diehard here.

We recently gave our 22 yr old Gdaughter our 2002 Camry with 128K original miles and one owner...us. She is very pleased and it was "really now" like new. I had our local Toyota dealer do a short version of the Certification they do on their previous owner vehicles they sell on their lot. With minor repairs our Gdaughter is the proud owner of a great vehicle. Dealers will tell you they will perform well over 200K + miles if maintained. Good Luck
and safe driving for your daughter. Now the next phase of her growing up, eh?
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Old 02-08-2013, 04:24 AM   #8
bncinwv
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Hey Dennis,
Ironically one of the cars I am looking at is a 2002 Camry with 115,000 miles on it. Ironically, with regards to the next phase of growing up, I am a lot less worried about the younger one than I have constantly been with the older one. The young one seems to have her head more straightened out. Bought the older one (21) a new Focus for college and before it had 6000 miles on it she had managed to lure a deer to her front bumper! $3700 repair, thank goodness for insurance! Oh, and to all the others, I appreciate the responses.
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Old 02-08-2013, 04:57 AM   #9
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If you want longevity with very little maintenance then most any Oriental based car is best. It is sad to say but most American made cars will not out last a Honda, Nissan, Mitsubishi, Toyota etc. Both of my kids have had several Jeep Cherokees with mileage in excess of 100k and they were reliable. My son buys and sells cars and he likes fixing up the foreign cars to sell cause most times they do not need anything mechanical done. My wife has a Kia that she uses for her business that we bought with 140,000 miles and now has 181,000 miles with no maintenance other then oil changes and related stuff. The one main thing you want to be sure has been done is a new timing belt. This can be expensive if it is an internal belt, but if you don't change it and it breaks you could lose the motor. If it is a first car for your kid you may want to look at the crash ratings also. That is another nice thing, most of those cars, although small, will have better crash ratings then their American counterparts. And being young they will not have a lot of money to spend on gas, so one of the little 4 bangers will be economical.
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Old 02-08-2013, 05:30 AM   #10
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Bingo, I think as with all vehicles (and trailers) you need to be able to verify previous maintenance, all the way back. As you know, maintenance is king.
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Old 02-08-2013, 02:14 PM   #11
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Any Toyota/Honda will be a fine vehicle. We got our daughter and older Corolla for high school and it lasted through college. Perfect car for a kid...no power, no repairs, and great reliability.
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Old 02-08-2013, 03:00 PM   #12
bncinwv
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Stumbled across a Kia Amanti at a local lot as well and the daughter loves the appearance of it. Seeking knowledgeable input, it has about 90,000 miles on it and the price is reasonable. The one Camry we were looking at was already sold, so the search continues, Toyota's are still on the list, but her eyes are starting to wander.
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Old 02-09-2013, 08:04 AM   #13
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We have a 1997 Lexus ES 300 A.K.A fancy Camry with 205K on it and runs like the day we bought it so yeah Toyota makes a danm nice Car Just make dang sure the Timing belt were changed, on these cars at the 100k range as most will detonate the top end when it lets loose, on my 1997 was the last year(I THINK) Toyota had the NON interference motor on the Camry/Lexus es300 and when the belt lets loose it just dies on the side of the road and then you just put a new one on, a hassle for sure but at least the valves won't collide with the pistons and make a mess of your motor like a Interference motor
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Old 02-09-2013, 08:05 AM   #14
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Two things combined would scare me off...Kia and 90,000 miles. A Kia might be okay and 90k might be okay (on a Honda/Toyota/Nissan), but those two items together would be a no go for me. Kia has not proven itself to be a reliable high mileage car...yet.
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Old 02-09-2013, 02:42 PM   #15
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As a discussion thought,

why does Kia offer a 100,000-mile powertrain warranty to original owner? On a new car, the Korean automaker offers a five-year/60,000-mile basic bumper-to-bumper warranty that includes coverage against manufacturer defects.

While I am a Toyota fan, the Korean makers seem to put their vehicles ahead of Toyota on their warranties. Not sure that helps Bingo but just sayin' that warranties often give us clues on what a manufacturer believes about their product. Just sayin'
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Old 02-09-2013, 02:47 PM   #16
bncinwv
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This is beginning to get difficult, thought I had found a Camry - sold. thought I had found two KIA's - sold. Hours today chasing non-existant cars. Found a decent Cobalt with 50,000 miles, and the dealer wanted about 40% above KBB and Edmunds retail - no way! This may take a few weeks it appears. Chasing cars on Autotrader but it seems they are about a week behind. Guess the next step is the old fashioned way, car lot after car lot. The things us parents do for their kids!!
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Old 02-09-2013, 08:39 PM   #17
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I had a couple of family members with KIAs and they were happy they had good warranties because they used them a lot. I understand the KIA product line has improved recently but this means prior to this you're better off sticking to Toyota, Honda or Nissan (in that order). Lexus, Acura and Infiniti are too expensive and the fancy gadgets will be the ones to break. A first time car should be very simple to increase reliability.

Bingo, you parents going from car lot to car lot dragging your daughter with you will be much better than sending her on her own. In the long run, the education to her will be priceless. My son who thought he was smart got burned every time when he came home with his "Look Dad, look what I bought" and none of them lasted more than 3 to 4 months. Then he weakened and his last couple of car purchases he "allowed" me to come along. He couldn't believe the stuff I had to tell the salesfolks to avoid getting shafted. He picked out a lot of cars that he loved until I was able to show him what was wrong with them. It did take a while. While they lasted much longer than the rustbuckets he bought and he lost them for his own dumb actions, you can't beat a parent's experience and knowledge.
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Old 02-09-2013, 10:26 PM   #18
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You can actually buy a used lexus ES 300 or Acura rl/TL for a resonable price and you would think with more fancy gadgets there would be more to break but just ask anybody that owns one they are Crazy reliable I would not hesitate picking a 100k + mile Lexus Es 300 or Camry or Acura over a 50k mile Cobalt ANYDAY I have had ALOT of cars in my life and have never had a better car like I said I have 205k on mine LOADED with all the goodies and the only thing that has gone bad besides typical maintenence stuff is the radio display is fading THATS CRAZY!
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Old 02-10-2013, 04:34 AM   #19
Tom S.
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Going against the grain here! New drivers are far more prove to be involved in an accident. To that end, have you considered getting something with more protection - like an old fullsize or even something on a truck chassis?
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Old 02-10-2013, 04:57 AM   #20
steelpony5555
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My 2001 KIA Sportage has 181,000 miles on it and like I said I haven't done a thing to it since I've had it. Yeah it's ugly as hell but she runs lol lol.
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