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kuhla

Truck's days are numbered. Got to keep my eyes open.

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My truck has been good to me. Mostly. Functionally so much of it is simple (manual locks, manual windows, manual transmission) and people have said it would last a long time ("I've seen those go over 200k easy!") but it has not been so nice to me the for the last year or so. I have not made a lot of noise about it but it is hard to ignore it financially anymore. Admittedly it's 15 years old at this point and I have not been especially nice to it but I'm still disappointed because, based on what others have said, I don't have that many miles on it (around 115k). It has been in the shop twice in the last year because of flat out not starting and various other issues.

KBB says my truck is currently worth $1.9K-$1.5K. I have put more than 50% of that into it in repairs in the last year. A number of small things and some big things too. For the last 48 hours I've literally had moderate amounts of smoke coming out from under my hood. I've looked at where it is coming from and it doesn't look like anything too major but it's going into the shop today and I imagine will stay there for a bit. I'm pretty sure I have been freaking people out at stop lights. I don't think it will/can catch fire. I expect the repair costs will probably end up putting me over 100% of the truck's value because I plan on bring up a list of other small things I want them to fix or look at. I'm getting real tired of this. Even at 100% of the value of the truck, it's true I would still be spending less than buying a new vehicle, but it just feels very financially stupid.

Speaking of financially, yes, I could absorb the cost of a new (reasonable priced) car right now but it would put a real nice wrench into my carefully crafted budget. On the one hand I could go hardcore A-to-B purchase to cover 80% of my needs to reduce the financial hit or, for once in my life, I could get something I actually have some emotional investment in.

I don't know what the near future holds for me or the truck but I need to start getting a feel for the used car market now so that I'm ready when the time comes. A part of me feels that time is not far off. So what does Autotrader bring to the table....

Filter settings:

  • Year: 2014-2016
  • Price: Max. $19,000 (this was left intentionally too high, real max is probably lower)
  • Mileage: Under 60,000
  • Style: AWD / 4WD, Hatchback, Sedan, SUV / Crossover, Truck, Wagon (this was left intentionally too broad, prefer smaller vehicle)
  • Type: Used
  • Engine: 4 Cylinder
  • Transmission: Manual (mainly because there are some automatics that are terribad)
  • Doors: Four Door, Five Door
  • Listing Features: With photos, With prices

Link - http://www.autotrader.com/cars-for-sale/Used+Cars/AWD+~+4WD/Placentia+CA-92870?doorCode=4&doorCodes=4,5&endYear=2016&engineCode=4CLDR&engineCodes=4CLDR&listingType=used&listingTypes=used&maxMileage=60000&maxPrice=19000&numRecords=100&photosOnlyActual=true&pricesOnly=true&searchRadius=25&showcaseListingId=401931868&showcaseOwnerId=58080498&startYear=2014&transmissionCode=MAN&transmissionCodes=MAN&vehicleStyleCodes=AWD4WD,HATCH,SEDAN,SUVCROSS,TRUCKS,WAGON&Log=0

Remember: They do their stupid "premium" listings first, regardless of your sort settings.

Quick notes on what I see:

  • Right off the bat I can rule out anything from FIAT and MINI. I don't fit in either. Seems to be a lot of those for sale.
  • I don't think I fit in most Hyundais and Kias and I don't think they make anything I want anyhow so I can rule out those brands too.
  • A see a small number of Ford Fiesta STs in that list towards the very top of my price range. I find it odd though because a brand new one only costs a tiny bit more. I would be pretty OK with owning a Fiesta ST though.
  • I see some Chevy Sonics. I know I fit in those. Most of them pretty cheap too. I've got some issues with the dash.
  • Not interested in one but a lot of Nissan Versa listed.
  • Not sure how I feel about Mitsubishi Lancer. They have pretty terrible MPG although it's better than what I get now (which isn't bad for a truck, 17MPG city, 20MPG highway, these are my own numbers, but I definitely want something that gets higher than that).
  • May have to look into what pops up with a slightly larger date range going back to 2013 and 2012 models. Not too happy with my list of options in here (ST not bad though).

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Expanding time to 2012 or newer:

 

  • A pair of 2012 VW Jetta GLIs showed up. A decent number of Jettas in general.
  • A 2012 MAZDASPEED3. lol.

I'll have to mess around with some specific searches for specific models to see what I find.

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I'll have to mess around with some specific searches for specific models to see what I find.

 

A handful of GTIs and Fiesta STs in the $19K-$20K range. Not a single Subaru WRX surprisingly and not many Imprezas in general. A couple of Nissan Jukes which I don't even know if I fit in. Literally zero 4 cylinder trucks.

 

Bleh. I hate this. I don't want to do this. I don't like my options.

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What websites are you looking at for your searches? Also with a budget of 16-19k, I would imagine your selection of vehicles would be quite a bit higher than what you've presented.

 

That being said, my un-scientific personal opinion sees you in Chevy Sonic, Volkswagen Polo/GTI. After looking at the FIesta ST, that also works. Let me know if you need any assistance or opinions.

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Just messing around with auto trader right now because they have a quick and easy filtering system.

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was gonna say i think we are returning our Veloster early. but for that money you prob could find something funner.

st is prob your best bet. are you positive you wont fit in a Abarth ?

vw is expensive on maintenance.

 

also lol i saw this yesterday

11403111_990228027674832_88376455500254411667326_990228041008164_466500663809522

 

also dont stop looking @ autotrader which you prob already know.

if you see brand specific go to the dealer. go to their website first and see what they have; then come visit and see the car. easy 2k-3k off. kelvins golf R he got it down to 26.5k from 29 k listed price. + extended warranty to go with your negotiation process.

soo if you see 19k for a gti you can prob get them at that price OTD. with tax and registration.

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I would be hesitant to recommend Kuhla an Abarth because of the size. It really is a small car. I've also heard the Fiat 500e's are more performance than the standard Abarth. The only issue there is charging of course.

http://www.thecarconnection.com/news/1094347_six-reasons-why-the-fiat-500e-electric-car-beats-the-abarth

 

In both cases the Fiat 500's have had a number of technical issues meaning their overall reliability is less than competing models. My coworkers have nicknamed them Shiat's when I discussed getting a Fiat. It's a great lease vehicle IMO but a purchase is not recommended. Also for the Fiat 500e's you are offered 12 days of Car Rentals a year free if you need to drive further than the standard range. Those are good for roadtrips.

 

Of course these all require significant planning.

 

Also discussed is the lack of at home charging infrastructure at your current location. This can be worked around but you would not like my ideas.

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While I really like my WRX, I'm not sure if I could recommend that you buy one. You fit (barely) but it gets poor gas mileage and they tend to be a bit too expensive for a more simple A:B car.

 

I'm not entirely sure why you're aggressively pursuing a manual transmission either, I feel like if I had the opportunity to buy a dsg or halfway decent automatic I might seriously consider it. I'm very lucky that my current commute it relatively short, but there are days where I'm joining the fucking US rowing team on the 91 grinding between first and second gear. The only small advantage is that a manual has less parts that can break, a clutch will last you 60-80k if you're not stupid, and a transmission repair is expensive if something goes wrong.

 

Out of what you've mentioned so far I would seriously look into a Fiesta ST. I know you fit and as long as the bolster is something you can live with it's probably a decent balance of price/fun.

 

Also Richard, the old joke about FIAT is that it stands for "Fix it again Tony." I'm not surprised their reliability isn't that great.

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did a few hw

and not bias at all ^_^

 

not sure wtf is wrong with this. cept the intake problems on the pic lol

http://www.cars.com/vehicledetail/detail/640269605/overview/

 

we can rape 2k-3k off this prob

http://www.bozzanivw.com/VehicleDetails/used-2014-Volkswagen-GTI-Driver%27s_Edition-Covina-CA/2565801013

and

http://www.audisouthcoast.com/used/Volkswagen/2012-Volkswagen-GTI-4f3b03cf0a0a00650044f51f412423b0.htm

 

i know those are not manual but my point is i think your options is alot more than what you think.

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No FIAT. I don't care if it's a 500 or an Abarth SSAMGGT123ABC. No FIAT. On top of any other reason, I do not fit at all. I've tried.

 

I realllllly don't want to spend $18K+ unless it's somehow really special so that rules out a lot of "nice" and "fun" options. I'm not even sure I'm buying a new vehicle. I'm waiting for the call from the mechanic today to see what he can do for me. I mainly just need to be thinking about the future.

 

Also discussed is the lack of at home charging infrastructure at your current location. This can be worked around but you would not like my ideas.

 

There is none currently at my complex and I think I know what some of your ideas would be so a full electric vehicle is not an option.

 

I'm not entirely sure why you're aggressively pursuing a manual transmission either, I feel like if I had the opportunity to buy a dsg or halfway decent automatic I might seriously consider it.

 

As discussed the other day, it's not that I want to totally rule out automatics but there is always the danger of being stuck with one of the terribad automatics. I've experienced some first hand. Some are tolerable and some are just awful.

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No FIAT. I don't care if it's a 500 or an Abarth SSAMGGT123ABC. No FIAT. On top of any other reason, I do not fit at all. I've tried.

 

I realllllly don't want to spend $18K+ unless it's somehow really special so that rules out a lot of "nice" and "fun" options. I'm not even sure I'm buying a new vehicle. I'm waiting for the call from the mechanic today to see what he can do for me. I mainly just need to be thinking about the future.

 

Also discussed is the lack of at home charging infrastructure at your current location. This can be worked around but you would not like my ideas.

 

There is none currently at my complex and I think I know what some of your ideas would be so a full electric vehicle is not an option.

 

I'm not entirely sure why you're aggressively pursuing a manual transmission either, I feel like if I had the opportunity to buy a dsg or halfway decent automatic I might seriously consider it.

 

As discussed the other day, it's not that I want to totally rule out automatics but there is always the danger of being stuck with one of the terribad automatics. I've experienced some first hand. Some are tolerable and some are just awful.

let me know what happen to your truck. im curious.

honestly im on the same boat. manual or dual clutch only. even some dual clutch are implemented terribad (MercedesBenz).

altho i have to say some of the high end regular slush box on bmw and vw , audi zf are pretty close to dual clutches. the shifts are almost instant and crisps.

 

CVT = never again

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let me know what happen to your truck. im curious.

honestly im on the same boat. manual or dual clutch only. even some dual clutch are implemented terribad (MercedesBenz).

altho i have to say some of the high end regular slush box on bmw and vw , audi zf are pretty close to dual clutches. the shifts are almost instant and crisps.

 

 

DSG is 100% fine. Some automatics are tolerable. My mom's Toyota Highlander is an example of terrible automatic. Gear changes are very clunky, slow and it's just not very smart with where it changes; sometimes changing to a much lower or higher gear than needed. You pretty much have to drive like a senior citizen for it not to bother you. I know some other cards have the same setup. I wouldn't be able to handle that day to day.

 

EDIT: Also, malaphax, this is the Sonic dash I was talking about

 

sonic-dash-web.jpg

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Yeah the Chevy Sonic's setup is also kind of...... :huh: to me too. I drove one for a day and it was not the most pleasant experience. So much peusdochrome and satin finishes on cheap plastic... Loving my Spark Dash though.

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But but but.. the BOLSTER.

 

I'm mostly joking, but you may want to try putting your ass in one of the models with the aggressive bolster just to see if it's as harsh as you remember it. But then again I'm probably getting ahead of myself.

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But but but.. the BOLSTER.

 

I'm mostly joking, but you may want to try putting your ass in one of the models with the aggressive bolster just to see if it's as harsh as you remember it. But then again I'm probably getting ahead of myself.

 

 

*ahem*

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The ford fiesta st is probably quite a bit cheaper than a GTI tino. He can get something with very low miles and late model within his budget, but a GTI would either have substantially more miles or be an older model.

 

I was initially making the joke about your choice of the non-recarro seats. I thought the bolster was AGGRESSIVE when we tried it out at the LA auto show, and that was before I put on some mass (and you're bigger than me). I can only imagine how tight/uncomfortable it might be now, but that being said, there's absolutely no harm in putting your ass in a seat.

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its true. the car might be older but the amount of mileage driven is about the same. ~30k for mk6 models

 

gti is quicker

bigger

arguably more comfortable.

better interior. <--- very high point for me. but taste is different for everyone. subjectiv

since its older its prob cheaper to insured.

coller imho

 

nothing wrong with the ST its a cool car.

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I'll say this one more time for good measure: It's not at all decided that I'm buying a car. I'm just getting a feel for the market place at this time.

 

 

In the Fiesta Recaro seats, too tight for shoulders to the point of almost immediate discomfort. My waist is fine. Thighs and ass are borderline too snug.

 

GTI is nice and all but it's still considered foreign (despite reality of where the parts are coming from), higher repair costs, higher insurance, etc. I am not VAG fanboi. I have no issues owning a ford, chevy, subaru, toyota, honda, etc. The brand doesn't mean much to me but I will take into account just about everything else (cost to buy, cost to repair, cost to insure, reviews focusing on driving feel, etc.).

 

The ford fiesta st is probably quite a bit cheaper than a GTI tino. He can get something with very low miles and late model within his budget, but a GTI would either have substantially more miles or be an older model.

 

I was initially making the joke about your choice of the non-recarro seats. I thought the bolster was AGGRESSIVE when we tried it out at the LA auto show, and that was before I put on some mass (and you're bigger than me). I can only imagine how tight/uncomfortable it might be now, but that being said, there's absolutely no harm in putting your ass in a seat.

 

The only ones we have ever sat in were with the Recaro seats. We have never tried the non-Recaro base models, hence my reply with the link to pictures since you can see they are less aggressively shaped.

 

its true. the car might be older but the amount of mileage driven is about the same. ~30k for mk6 models

 

gti is quicker

bigger

arguably more comfortable.

better interior. <--- very high point for me. but taste is different for everyone. subjectiv

since its older its prob cheaper to insured.

coller imho

 

nothing wrong with the ST its a cool car.

 

I don't want/need quicker. A bit more power than what I have now would be good, and sometimes useful, but I am not looking for power. I really have no use for 200+ HP. Part of the reason I'm not even considering anything more than 4 cylinders.

 

I don't want/need bigger. If I can fit in compact city cars like a Sonic somewhat comfortably, then I'd rather have smaller, not bigger (within reason).

 

I'm not concerned much with the "finish" of interiors. They can be hard, textured plastic everywhere. I do care about instrument display, dash and center console controls (primarily that they are easy to hit without staring at them, excessive buttons, etc.).

 

MPG is important. For a compact car, less than 25 MPG city really hurts its value in my eyes.

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My qualms against a GTI is from what you told me, they're less reliable too You were having problems with your Audi at 60,000 miles.

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I got my truck back on Sunday. The bill hurt but it's running now and the important parts are working again. No more smoke.

 

I may look into what it takes to change the spark plugs myself in the nearish future.

 

Mechanic, if he can be trusted, claims the truck otherwise looks like it has many miles and years ahead of it.

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Here's the published maintenance schedule FYI:

- For reference it signaled a Platinum Spark Plug replacement at 100k miles

https://owner.ford.com/tools/account/maintenance/maintenance-schedule.html#/ymm/2000/Ford/Ranger/74

 

Replacing spark plugs are a relatively simple affair, as they're easily accessible at the top of the engine.

http://www.wikihow.com/Change-Spark-Plugs-in-a-Car

 

 

If you haven't replaced your timing belt yet, make sure you replace your water pump along with it even if the mechanic doesn't suggest it. This is due to the fact that the cost of part is relatively low compared to the labor cost of accessing it which you're paying for already when you're doing the timing belt swap.

http://community.cartalk.com/discussion/2279427/replace-water-pump-when-replacing-timing-belt

http://www.centralaveauto.com/replace-water-pump-with-timing-belt/

 

The other thing I'd be concerned is if the smoke you experienced before may have damaged or clogged your catalytic converter. I'd be wary the next time you go in a Smog Check. I had a failed smog check on my '88 Camry before but I was happy to report that I brought to a mechanic that had a way to steam clean it rather than replace the whole thing (an expensive proposition) for about $100. It passed smog afterwards.

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