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Old 01-20-2005, 06:46 PM   #1
runnergirl
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Ford or Nissan - or neither?

I'm in a quandry --- my car has reached it's life's end (91 Honda Prelude - needs timing belt, brakes, tires, and has small oil & coolant leaks) and now I'm in a spot where I need a car but have very limited funds at the moment. Currently my 2 choices are a 1994 Ford Taurus w/ 180,000 miles (new tires, recent maintenance work - although don't know specifics) for $300 or a 1997 or 98 Nissan Maxima w/ 260,000 miles (yikes) for $2000. The Ford was previously owned by a co-worker's mechanic then used by his son for 6 months. The Nissan is owned by a salesman - most miles were highway (I'm guessing 75-80%) - who was meticulous about the car's maintenance.

My questions are: Are either of the 2 worth considering and if so, which one? Or, should I stay away from both and look elsewhere?

Thanks for any advice.
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Old 01-20-2005, 06:47 PM   #2
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I would probably steer clear of a Maxima with that amount of miles.
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Old 01-20-2005, 08:49 PM   #3
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I would probably steer clear of a Maxima with that amount of miles.

yeah, but the taurus is living hell. They are incredibly high maintenance. and with 180,000 miles, god knows what else is going to fall off.

Honestly, I'd just fix up the old prelude, those things aren't that hard to fix if you know what you're doign. The tires will cost about 500 with installation, (you can't put tires on rims yourself), the timing belt you can put on yourself, brakes are fairly easy to repair, and will cost 150 tops. The oil and radiator leaks will cause problems, and it's hard to locate the problem, and those would be best to take it into a shop for. Roughly 800 bucks there. That way, you have a car that works (any used car that you buy will require some work on it, roughly around 2000) and will work for a long time. 1800 for a car that works. That's my choice.
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Old 01-20-2005, 10:21 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by runnergirl
I'm in a quandry --- my car has reached it's life's end (91 Honda Prelude - needs timing belt, brakes, tires, and has small oil & coolant leaks) and now I'm in a spot where I need a car but have very limited funds at the moment. Currently my 2 choices are a 1994 Ford Taurus w/ 180,000 miles (new tires, recent maintenance work - although don't know specifics) for $300 or a 1997 or 98 Nissan Maxima w/ 260,000 miles (yikes) for $2000. The Ford was previously owned by a co-worker's mechanic then used by his son for 6 months. The Nissan is owned by a salesman - most miles were highway (I'm guessing 75-80%) - who was meticulous about the car's maintenance.

My questions are: Are either of the 2 worth considering and if so, which one? Or, should I stay away from both and look elsewhere?

Thanks for any advice.

I would go with the Nissan, cause if it is truely highwaydriving, the motor should still be good. My buddy had the same delimma(spelling?), when he bought his '95 blazer that had 185,000 miles on it 2 years ago and nothing major has gone wrong it, just the minor things thatcome with age. Plus it is a newer car, and that year taurus is ugly, no offense.
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Old 01-20-2005, 10:43 PM   #5
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I myself had a 1995 Taurus wagon, and if my car was any reflection of the 94, then I would highly suggest staying away from it. It has maintenance problems that you would not want to deal with. The first year we had it, we had to get the tranny rebuilt (a wee bit expensive) because something broke on it. When we took it in to the mechanic, he said it looked like the transmission had 200,000 miles on it, even though there was only about 15,000 actual miles.

Later the head gaskets blew, and that was rather expensive too fix also. Now (I still have it, haven't sold it yet) there is an infernal squeaking noise that nobody can seem to find (it sounds like it's coming from everywhere).

If I was you, I wouldn't get either of those cars, because the mileage is just too high on both.

For $2000 you can get a decent car that runs well, you just gotta look around. Say for instance, at the local Car Mart, or the classified section of the newspaper.
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Old 01-21-2005, 12:27 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Biznard
I myself had a 1995 Taurus wagon, and if my car was any reflection of the 94, then I would highly suggest staying away from it. It has maintenance problems that you would not want to deal with. The first year we had it, we had to get the tranny rebuilt (a wee bit expensive) because something broke on it. When we took it in to the mechanic, he said it looked like the transmission had 200,000 miles on it, even though there was only about 15,000 actual miles.

Couple things. One, of course the mechanic is going to say that so you'll go along with whatever he says to replace. The auto repair world is incredibly corrupt. Also, I own a 90 taurus GL with 100k miles and right now I'm in the middle of replacing the whole power steering system. Stay away from the old tauruses. They are HORRIBLE. Like I said though, just repair the prelude.
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Old 01-21-2005, 05:15 AM   #7
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Thank you all for your advice. I greatly appreciate it.
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Old 01-21-2005, 08:05 AM   #8
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Is that all you can get for 2k? I mean there has gotta be more reliable choices out there for that kind of money...

I'd keep searching and not be pressured into a situation that's gonna make you have to spend more on maintenance
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Old 01-21-2005, 05:16 PM   #9
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Cool Stay with the prelude

Quote:
Originally Posted by runnergirl
Thank you all for your advice. I greatly appreciate it.
Unless you really want a diffrent car, for 2 grand, I'd take that money and fix those problems with the lude. And you may even have a little left over to add something else to the car. Again I'm not really sure what your actual budget is, but if it were me, I'd keep the lude and fix it up. Those cars definately getting harder to come by here in the US. I've been searching for over a year for a 97 prelude, and I FINALLY found one here in Jacksonville FL a few months ago. Of course, had I had the money I'd bought the 01 prelude at Drive Ticket, but I just recently found out that was sold now too. Anyways, as I was saying to begin with, take the 2 grand if that's what it is, and fix the lude. Over time, that car will I'm sure will be a fun car to drive modified as im sure it probably was before. I'm no wiz with cars, and I'm still learning myself, but do what makes you happy. That's the important thing. {BTW, anyone out there in Jacksonville FL near or on Southside area that want a new friend? I moved here this past July and want to make some friends. Im an easy person to get along with. 26yrs, 5'1, 115pds, laid back kinda guy.}
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Old 01-22-2005, 02:19 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by runnergirl
I'm in a quandry --- my car has reached it's life's end (91 Honda Prelude - needs timing belt, brakes, tires, and has small oil & coolant leaks) and now I'm in a spot where I need a car but have very limited funds at the moment. Currently my 2 choices are a 1994 Ford Taurus w/ 180,000 miles (new tires, recent maintenance work - although don't know specifics) for $300 or a 1997 or 98 Nissan Maxima w/ 260,000 miles (yikes) for $2000. The Ford was previously owned by a co-worker's mechanic then used by his son for 6 months. The Nissan is owned by a salesman - most miles were highway (I'm guessing 75-80%) - who was meticulous about the car's maintenance.

My questions are: Are either of the 2 worth considering and if so, which one? Or, should I stay away from both and look elsewhere?

Thanks for any advice.

Fix up the Prelude, it's just routine main. on it for the most part and is a heck of a lot more reliable than a Taurus or a Maxima with 260k on it. Timing Belt, brakes and tires should only cost you around $300 and to fix those leaks it shouldnt cost much over that overall.
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Old 01-24-2005, 09:05 PM   #11
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non of those cars

I had a taurus before and that car was a piece of junk it was breaking down all the time, taurus are not good cars. For the nissan, I don't think you should buy it because of the miles, those cars are good cars but with that many miles it's not going to last long. The owner says that the miles are highway miles but it might not be true, I would make anything up just to sell my car, so he is probably lying. I think you should try looking for another honda but not with a lot of miles, those cars are great cars they last long and they're all over the place and they're not that expensive.
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Old 01-24-2005, 09:13 PM   #12
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Everybody is saying the Tauruses are bad, and unreliable. Wonder how that one made it to 180k miles then? If they all fall apart so early and easy shouldn't it have been dead and buried over 80k miles ago???

Jesus. Even direct evidence that you must be wrong doesn't stop bias, does it?
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Old 01-25-2005, 04:40 AM   #13
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Everybody is saying the Tauruses are bad, and unreliable. Wonder how that one made it to 180k miles then? If they all fall apart so early and easy shouldn't it have been dead and buried over 80k miles ago???

Jesus. Even direct evidence that you must be wrong doesn't stop bias, does it?

Reputations earned are usually backed by a lot of evidence. At least that's usually how these sorts of reputations are brought upon. I know the Taurus isn't as reliable as any Honda/Toyota family car of the same year. BAcked up by several consumer feedback guides (Consumer Reports) and JD power. Also just experiences count a lot for me, I know a few people with Taurus'. And I know a ton of people with Honda/Toyota Accord/Camrys and it's just easy to deduct the Accord/Camry are mroe reliable overall.

Just for hard evidence to support my claim i'll post The Accord and Taurus of the same year for a few years from JD Power (ratings).

(All are long term mechanical reliability ratings, 1-5 stars)

1990 Accord vs. Taurus

Accord - 5 out of 5 stars
Taurus - 3 out of 5 stars

1996 Accord vs. Taurus

Accord - 5 out of 5 stars
Taurus - 2 out of 5 stars

2001 Accord vs. Taurus

Accord - 5 out of 5 stars
Taurus - 2 out of 5 stars

So now maybe you can understand a little better why the Taurus earned the reputation of not being 'as' reliable as its competitors. Simply put, it's outclassed in reliability by the Accord as these numbers suggest.
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Old 01-25-2005, 07:05 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by thunderbird1100
Reputations earned are usually backed by a lot of evidence. At least that's usually how these sorts of reputations are brought upon. I know the Taurus isn't as reliable as any Honda/Toyota family car of the same year. BAcked up by several consumer feedback guides (Consumer Reports) and JD power. Also just experiences count a lot for me, I know a few people with Taurus'. And I know a ton of people with Honda/Toyota Accord/Camrys and it's just easy to deduct the Accord/Camry are mroe reliable overall.

And I know a ton with broken Toyotas and Hondas, as well as Tauruses over 30k miles. Anecdotal evidence is just that.

Simple fact, if it's made it to 180k miles, it's coouldnt' have been in the shop too often, making it a pretty reliable car.

Besides "reputation" (which is made up as much by idiots who have had ONE example and running around badmouthing it as anything, and by people who have never owned one, but have strong brand lyalty to another brand and hafe to be insulting to everything that isn't their favorite, which we get a LOT on here), you also have to use knowedge and your own ability to reason.

A '94 with 30k miles on it may have been in the shop a lot. The same car with 180k on it couldn't have been, or it couldn't have racked up the mileage it has. Same for the other car in the post. 280k on it means it was never sitting still for long. Armed with that knowledge, and looking at the cars in person will tell you if they were maintained well to get there, and thus will last a long time, or if they were abused and not taken care of, and are on their last legs...

Simply responding with "I had one one time and I didnt like it" or "it's a Ford, so it's Found On Road Dead" aren't helpful, or factual responses.

The sooner you get that through your head, the better. ANY car that is well treated will be mnore reliable than ANY car that isn't. Period.
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Old 01-26-2005, 02:44 AM   #15
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Originally Posted by ChrisV
And I know a ton with broken Toyotas and Hondas, as well as Tauruses over 30k miles. Anecdotal evidence is just that.

Simple fact, if it's made it to 180k miles, it's coouldnt' have been in the shop too often, making it a pretty reliable car.

Besides "reputation" (which is made up as much by idiots who have had ONE example and running around badmouthing it as anything, and by people who have never owned one, but have strong brand lyalty to another brand and hafe to be insulting to everything that isn't their favorite, which we get a LOT on here), you also have to use knowedge and your own ability to reason.

A '94 with 30k miles on it may have been in the shop a lot. The same car with 180k on it couldn't have been, or it couldn't have racked up the mileage it has. Same for the other car in the post. 280k on it means it was never sitting still for long. Armed with that knowledge, and looking at the cars in person will tell you if they were maintained well to get there, and thus will last a long time, or if they were abused and not taken care of, and are on their last legs...

Simply responding with "I had one one time and I didnt like it" or "it's a Ford, so it's Found On Road Dead" aren't helpful, or factual responses.

The sooner you get that through your head, the better. ANY car that is well treated will be mnore reliable than ANY car that isn't. Period.

I agree and can deduct on my own what car is better. Not a difficult thing. I spend extra time doing research on a lot of cars' reliability. I agree with any car you take care of should last longer than a car you do not. But you cant say everyone who has owned a Taurus for those same year Accords I mentioned in the last post didnt take as good as care of their car as the Accord owners did (not saying you said it, just speaking in general terms here). You really cant make up too many excuses when there is hard statistical consumer feedback on a car's reliability...which sadly some people try and do (not referring to you). Sure some people will have zero issues with their Taurus in 250k miles, im sure. There are people that have had no issues with their Accords either in that same mileage span (I personally have 205k on my 90 Accord and the only thing replaced was a $100 Main Relay which really didnt even need to get replaced).

My car was in no way pampered the last 30k miles either (since I've obtained it at 175k). I've changed the oil in it only twice (once at 188k miles and then at 200k) with NON-synthetic oil. I never fill the tank up full..usually i put a few bucks in it at a time when it's low, REALLY low. The car still uses the stock, never changed before, brake rotors (and really dont need to be replaced either) and I do all city driving. I drive it hard all the time too ( I always seem to be late for something, you know...). But she still goes strong each and every day. I'm sure a Taurus owner could share the same story. But when you look at overall statistics, you can deduct which car you can put a larger confidence interval on being more reliable over time.
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