Good Car For $3000

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What is a good reliable car that i can get for around $3000? i would prefer a civic but im not sure i can get one for that low in good shape. I was also looking at an eclipse but wasnt sure if it was a reliable car.

i am open to any suggestions..

btw, i am more interested in cars that will be reliable that wont brake down on me and i wont have to often repair, and how it looks.. i could really careless about speed.

posted by  infamous

Every might have there favorite, so here's my :2cents:

No particular order:

Civic
Tercel
Corolla
Sentre


My advise is to stay away from any car that some may think are fast, such as the Eclipse. They tend to get driven hard by their previous owners. You really shouldn't have a problem finding a $3000 car. Unless you are shopping lots. The best deals on these sorts of cars are found in front yards with a "4-Sale" sign on the windshield.

posted by  corbett_auto

Unfortunately, any car can break, and cheap cars are more likely to. I had a cheap Civic that cost an arm and a leg to keep running, while also having an even cheaper Chevy Citation that went over 300k miles with almost no cost at all (just gas and the occasional, and I do mean occasional, oil change). you can scope out a car and carfax it, and have a mechanic check it over, but still have a catastrophic breakdown the following week.

And of course, geographic location will have a lot to do with it. In the midwest and northeast, cheap cars will tend to be weathered and very likely rusty, needing repairs to the undercarriage way before the engines and trans wear out, while on the west coast and in the southwest, they are more likely to wear out mechanically long before they rust away.

Where are you located? That will make a big difference on what is available in that price range.

posted by  ChrisV

im located in Los angeles.. sometimes im in inglewood.. sometimes in dowtown..


what are your guys thoughts on purchasing a car at an auction?

posted by  infamous

I would not recommend an Auction.... You do not have nearly enough time to make an accurate assessment of the car. Also, most of the auctions that allow non-dealers do not have deals any better than you can find looking through your local classifieds.

Have you looked through the local free classifieds? What about craigslist? I see cars listed all the time for $1000. Any car with some age is prone to break down..... the less you pay for it the more you will have for the repairs if the arise.

posted by  corbett_auto

yeah ive been lookng through craigslist and autotrader..

what about mileage? ive heard anything over 100,000 miles is too much.. is this accurate ?

posted by  infamous

In your price range, it'll be pretty much the only choice. And with modern cars, 100k miles isn't even halfway through the useable lifespan. Hell, the '98 BMW 740iL I bought as a daily driver 2 years ago had 143k miles on it when I bought it, and has 166k miles on it now... Don't worry about the mileage, only how well it was maintained.

posted by  ChrisV

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