Car for 23 year old

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Mr400meterdash
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Car for 23 year old

Post by Mr400meterdash » Fri Apr 20, 2018 3:14 pm

Hello All!

I am a 23 year old male who is looking to get a "new" car. I currently own a 2004 grand prix with close to 200k miles on it. It is not running that well and nearing the end of its life. I will try and sell it but not hoping to get a lot for it.

I am looking for a car/suv/whatever that is reliable and that will last me many years (granted I take care of it) that is in the $10-12,000 range. I have $3000 saved up as of right now.

My only wants are to get something that is reliable and can last me many years. I have been told honda and toyota are good brands when it comes to those categories but was not sure. I would do my own research but I know nothing about cars and am not sure where to start! Any help or suggestions would be appreciated!

Thanks!

delamer
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Re: Car for 23 year old

Post by delamer » Fri Apr 20, 2018 3:24 pm

Consumer Reports does regular updates of its list of reliable used cars.

It is a good place to start. The list is broken out by type of vehicle and price.

SimonJester
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Re: Car for 23 year old

Post by SimonJester » Fri Apr 20, 2018 6:17 pm

My vote would be a corolla or civic, you should be able to get into a newer model under 60K miles for that price.
"They who can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety, deserve neither liberty nor safety." - Benjamin Franklin

jehovasfitness
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Re: Car for 23 year old

Post by jehovasfitness » Fri Apr 20, 2018 6:23 pm

Honda Fit, read the recent thread on it imo

crystalbank
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Re: Car for 23 year old

Post by crystalbank » Fri Apr 20, 2018 6:49 pm

Honda Fit or Yaris iA.

bloom2708
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Re: Car for 23 year old

Post by bloom2708 » Fri Apr 20, 2018 7:32 pm

Used Lexus ES.

Find the nicest one owner with low miles in your price range.

I recently bought an 05 ES 330, 75k miles. $7k

Beautiful car. Toyota reliable.
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jehovasfitness
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Re: Car for 23 year old

Post by jehovasfitness » Fri Apr 20, 2018 7:37 pm

bloom2708 wrote:
Fri Apr 20, 2018 7:32 pm
Used Lexus ES.

Find the nicest one owner with low miles in your price range.

I recently bought an 05 ES 330, 75k miles. $7k

Beautiful car. Toyota reliable.
Till the repair bills come

strafe
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Re: Car for 23 year old

Post by strafe » Fri Apr 20, 2018 7:44 pm

jehovasfitness wrote:
Fri Apr 20, 2018 7:37 pm
bloom2708 wrote:
Fri Apr 20, 2018 7:32 pm
Used Lexus ES.

Find the nicest one owner with low miles in your price range.

I recently bought an 05 ES 330, 75k miles. $7k

Beautiful car. Toyota reliable.
Till the repair bills come
Why do you say that? The ES330 is a Camry with a nicer interior. I’ve never though of Toyotas as expensive to keep on the road. The 3MZ-FE motor is bulletproof.

strafe
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Re: Car for 23 year old

Post by strafe » Fri Apr 20, 2018 7:45 pm

Consider a lightly used Hyundai Sonata

jehovasfitness
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Re: Car for 23 year old

Post by jehovasfitness » Fri Apr 20, 2018 7:46 pm

strafe wrote:
Fri Apr 20, 2018 7:44 pm
jehovasfitness wrote:
Fri Apr 20, 2018 7:37 pm
bloom2708 wrote:
Fri Apr 20, 2018 7:32 pm
Used Lexus ES.

Find the nicest one owner with low miles in your price range.

I recently bought an 05 ES 330, 75k miles. $7k

Beautiful car. Toyota reliable.
Till the repair bills come
Why do you say that? The ES330 is a Camry with a nicer interior. I’ve never though of Toyotas as expensive to keep on the road. The 3MZ-FE motor is bulletproof.
Assumed they carried Lexus repair costs maybe not

athan
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Re: Car for 23 year old

Post by athan » Fri Apr 20, 2018 7:47 pm

Mr400meterdash wrote:
Fri Apr 20, 2018 3:14 pm
Hello All!

I am a 23 year old male who is looking to get a "new" car. I currently own a 2004 grand prix with close to 200k miles on it. It is not running that well and nearing the end of its life. I will try and sell it but not hoping to get a lot for it.

I am looking for a car/suv/whatever that is reliable and that will last me many years (granted I take care of it) that is in the $10-12,000 range. I have $3000 saved up as of right now.

My only wants are to get something that is reliable and can last me many years. I have been told honda and toyota are good brands when it comes to those categories but was not sure. I would do my own research but I know nothing about cars and am not sure where to start! Any help or suggestions would be appreciated!

Thanks!
I've been driving a Toyota 4Runner since I was 23. I'm now 37 and still going.

02nz
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Re: Car for 23 year old

Post by 02nz » Fri Apr 20, 2018 7:49 pm

Mazda3, Corolla iM previously known as the Scion iM, Toyota Yaris iA (really a Mazda2), Honda Fit, or Honda Civic. Avoid Nissan's subcompacts unless you want a constant reminder that you're not rich.

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Watty
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Re: Car for 23 year old

Post by Watty » Fri Apr 20, 2018 10:13 pm

One of the problem is that some cars like Toyota's and Honda's retain their value so well that buying one that is a few years old may not get you enough of a discount to make the used car a better deal than just buying a used car.

If your finances are tight(been there done that :D ) then when you look for a basic used car you can usually separate them into categories like;

1) Highly desirable used cars like Honda's and Toyota's that are good cars but probably too expensive to be a good deal.

2) Less desirable cars that have good reliability ratings but may be less demand. You would need to do your research but off the top of my head some(but not all) models of cars like Ford's, Hyundai, and Mazda would fall into these categories. This is the group you probably want to look for the car that will be the best deal.

3) Cars that have a reputation for reliability problems like Fiats, Chrysler, some GM cars. At some price these could be OK especially if you can do many car repairs yourself and don't mind working on cars.
Mr400meterdash wrote:
Fri Apr 20, 2018 3:14 pm
I would do my own research but I know nothing about cars and am not sure where to start!
As someone else mentioned consumer reports is a good place to start.

Also check out the safety ratings here.
http://www.iihs.org/iihs

If you buy an older car then one very important safety feature is Electronic Stability Control(ESC) which became standard in 2012, if you look at cars that are older than that then be sure to check to see if the car has ESC or not.

Get your financing set up ahead of time, credit unions are usually a good place to get car loans.

When you have several models in mind then get insurance quotes on them since the cost to insure cars that seem very similar can be vary a lot.

You should figure out at least three models that would work for you. At some price your third choice car is a better deal than paying top dollar for your first choice car.

When looking at used cars be sure to look at the tires. If they they will need to be replaced soon then you need to budget $500 or more for new tires. Tires for a SUV can be over $1,000.

One place you can look for a car would be rental car sales. I once bought Hertz rental car and it worked out very well for me. You can search their inventory online. You might check out what they have for a Toyota Yaris or a Hyundai Elantra.

https://www.hertzcarsales.com

The Elantra has a good warranty but you need to read the details about how the 100K warranty is only for the original owner.

There have been threads about buying rental cars that you can look up. Lots of people have had good experiences with buying rental cars but some people are sure that all rental cars have been abused so there is no consensus on that.

All that said I recently bought a new 2018 Corolla largely because it has a lot of the new advanced safety features. It cost a bit over $15K plus a couple of thousand dollars in local taxes and registration fees. I don't know anything about the rest of your financial situation but if you are otherwise doing pretty well financially then something like that would be worth considering since that is only a few thousand dollars over your original target price range so the used cars might not be discounted enough to make them a good deal. Here is the thread I did about my car buying process.

viewtopic.php?f=11&t=239526&p=3746230&h ... e#p3746230

jehovasfitness
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Re: Car for 23 year old

Post by jehovasfitness » Sat Apr 21, 2018 6:06 am

I prefer Edmunds.com for research

You will also find dozens to hundreds of consumer reviews for year specific cars.

That and check out car enthusiast forums related to said vehicke if there are any

mmmodem
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Re: Car for 23 year old

Post by mmmodem » Sat Apr 21, 2018 6:47 am

I like using Edmund's True Cost to Own calculator which shows total ownership cost over 5 years.
https://www.edmunds.com/tco.html
The price of the vehicle is only one cost of ownership. You still have to factor in fuel costs, maintenance, etc.

For example a Yaris is the lowest tier penalty box vehicle in Toyota's line up. It costs a few thousand less than a Corolla to buy. However, True Cost to Own shows it having only a $400 savings over a Corolla likely due to resale value. Furthermore, a Prius while costing more to buy initially will save over a $1000 over a Corolla due to not only lower fuel costs but lower insurance and lower maintenance. The Prius C has one of the lowest ownership costs of any vehicle.

Disclaimer: I reluctantly bought a Prius because I wanted solo HOV access in my state. I found out it cost less to own than the Civic it replaced with more luxury features. I was afraid of battery replacement at first but then realized the Prius along with having no drive belts to fail has a history of low maintenance costs despite the battery.

lostdog
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Re: Car for 23 year old

Post by lostdog » Sat Apr 21, 2018 9:26 am

SimonJester wrote:
Fri Apr 20, 2018 6:17 pm
My vote would be a corolla or civic, you should be able to get into a newer model under 60K miles for that price.
+1. This is great advice. Both cars are rock solid and will last forever. I have a 2011 corolla. I have zero issues with it. Just make to to take good care of it and follow the manual's recommended maintenance.

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dm200
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Re: Car for 23 year old

Post by dm200 » Sat Apr 21, 2018 9:42 am

Consumer Reports rates the 2018 Toyota Camry very highly - if you want a slightly larger car than a Corolla or Civic. For a regular Camry, I would choose the 4 cyl for better fuel economy.

As Hybrids show general reliability over time, I might also consider a hybrid - such as Prius or Camry Hybris - perhaps the Prius Hybrid plug in (if you have the charging capability).

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dm200
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Re: Car for 23 year old

Post by dm200 » Sat Apr 21, 2018 9:44 am

jehovasfitness wrote:
Fri Apr 20, 2018 7:37 pm
bloom2708 wrote:
Fri Apr 20, 2018 7:32 pm
Used Lexus ES.
Find the nicest one owner with low miles in your price range.
I recently bought an 05 ES 330, 75k miles. $7k
Beautiful car. Toyota reliable.
Till the repair bills come
Is it correct, then, that a very similar Lexus to a Toyota will have higher repair bills? Why?

02nz
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Re: Car for 23 year old

Post by 02nz » Sat Apr 21, 2018 9:49 am

dm200 wrote:
Sat Apr 21, 2018 9:42 am
Consumer Reports rates the 2018 Toyota Camry very highly - if you want a slightly larger car than a Corolla or Civic. For a regular Camry, I would choose the 4 cyl for better fuel economy.
A 2018 Camry would be about 2x-3x the OP’s stated price range.

Swampy
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Re: Car for 23 year old

Post by Swampy » Sat Apr 21, 2018 9:57 am

Just beware of flood damaged cars from Sandy (2012), Harvey (2017) and Irma (2017). Carfax, in my experience, has proven utterly unreliable to get an accurate history. When the time came, we aided one college grad in buying a brand new Corolla just because of this. The other college grad is driving our old 2007 Sonata, which still runs well despite having over 150,000 miles on it. Settle for a less expensive, but reliable, used auto now so you can save up for a better one in the future instead of being a slave to monthly payments. Having a spouse and kids really changes the dynamic. Get one with a good MPG rating since gas prices look like they're trending up - but I wouldn't spend extra for either an electric vehicle or hybrid. Lastly, look at auto insurance costs as these can vary based on make and model. Personally, I'd recommend limiting car choices to Toyota or Hyundai for multiple reasons - especially ease of affordable repairs and getting parts while not getting skinned alive which can happen if you choose to buy an older, but higher end make.

PS The grad who chose a new vehicle now regrets the decision only because the payments continue long past the excitement of getting that new car smell!
If you fail to plan, you plan to fail. | Failure is not an option. | If I have seen further, it is because I was carried on the shoulders of giants.

Grt2bOutdoors
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Re: Car for 23 year old

Post by Grt2bOutdoors » Sat Apr 21, 2018 9:58 am

dm200 wrote:
Sat Apr 21, 2018 9:44 am
jehovasfitness wrote:
Fri Apr 20, 2018 7:37 pm
bloom2708 wrote:
Fri Apr 20, 2018 7:32 pm
Used Lexus ES.
Find the nicest one owner with low miles in your price range.
I recently bought an 05 ES 330, 75k miles. $7k
Beautiful car. Toyota reliable.
Till the repair bills come
Is it correct, then, that a very similar Lexus to a Toyota will have higher repair bills? Why?
Parts are more expensive. Lexus is the Acura of a Honda. I had the oil pan go on my Honda Civic EX, the ex model used the Acura Integra engine, the difference in price was $275 and you had to buy the pan from the dealer only, there were no aftermarket parts. That is what could happen if something that is not aftermarket goes on a Lexus. My b-i-l owns a Lexus, raves about them, but he's handy with a wrench, if you are not handy with a wrench and need to take the car to a mechanic each time something breaks, then sticking with a Toyota or Honda would be more cost efficient.
"One should invest based on their need, ability and willingness to take risk - Larry Swedroe" Asking Portfolio Questions

tibbitts
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Re: Car for 23 year old

Post by tibbitts » Sat Apr 21, 2018 10:02 am

Mr400meterdash wrote:
Fri Apr 20, 2018 3:14 pm
Hello All!

I am a 23 year old male who is looking to get a "new" car. I currently own a 2004 grand prix with close to 200k miles on it. It is not running that well and nearing the end of its life. I will try and sell it but not hoping to get a lot for it.

I am looking for a car/suv/whatever that is reliable and that will last me many years (granted I take care of it) that is in the $10-12,000 range. I have $3000 saved up as of right now.

My only wants are to get something that is reliable and can last me many years. I have been told honda and toyota are good brands when it comes to those categories but was not sure. I would do my own research but I know nothing about cars and am not sure where to start! Any help or suggestions would be appreciated!

Thanks!
Apparently unlike other Bogleheads, I've had vehicle wants and, in some cases, needs, evolve unexpectedly over the years. Because of that I think the car you buy today isn't that big of a decision, because you might need a different kind of car tomorrow.

Reputation is always a trailing indicator. If Bogleheads had been around long enough you would have had people pushing domestics long after imports had evolved to be competitive and then surpass domestics in many respects (which they didn't initially.) Also resale value sometimes hangs on based on reputation longer than it should as well and that can work for or against you.

Insurance cost can be unexpectedly different between similar vehicles so you have to keep that in mind.

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SquawkIdent
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Re: Car for 23 year old

Post by SquawkIdent » Sat Apr 21, 2018 10:08 am

Stretch your budget a little bit more and buy a brand new Honda Fit.

Huge cargo area, awesome gas mileage, sporty for the price, very reliable and reasonably priced. You can thank me in 10 years when you are still driving it. Good luck. :sharebeer

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dm200
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Re: Car for 23 year old

Post by dm200 » Sat Apr 21, 2018 10:53 am

Grt2bOutdoors wrote:
Sat Apr 21, 2018 9:58 am
dm200 wrote:
Sat Apr 21, 2018 9:44 am
jehovasfitness wrote:
Fri Apr 20, 2018 7:37 pm
bloom2708 wrote:
Fri Apr 20, 2018 7:32 pm
Used Lexus ES.
Find the nicest one owner with low miles in your price range.
I recently bought an 05 ES 330, 75k miles. $7k
Beautiful car. Toyota reliable.
Till the repair bills come
Is it correct, then, that a very similar Lexus to a Toyota will have higher repair bills? Why?
Parts are more expensive. Lexus is the Acura of a Honda. I had the oil pan go on my Honda Civic EX, the ex model used the Acura Integra engine, the difference in price was $275 and you had to buy the pan from the dealer only, there were no aftermarket parts. That is what could happen if something that is not aftermarket goes on a Lexus. My b-i-l owns a Lexus, raves about them, but he's handy with a wrench, if you are not handy with a wrench and need to take the car to a mechanic each time something breaks, then sticking with a Toyota or Honda would be more cost efficient.
Thanks. We own two older Camrys - and are now probably in a pattern of older vehicles. Some Lexus models of the same model years look just like our Camrys and share a lot of commonality. Sometimes folks with older Lexus models drive low miles and take good care of them. If one came along in such good shape, we might be interested - thought similar maintenance/repair to Toyotas. I guess we will now scratch that off our list.

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dm200
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Re: Car for 23 year old

Post by dm200 » Sat Apr 21, 2018 10:56 am

02nz wrote:
Sat Apr 21, 2018 9:49 am
dm200 wrote:
Sat Apr 21, 2018 9:42 am
Consumer Reports rates the 2018 Toyota Camry very highly - if you want a slightly larger car than a Corolla or Civic. For a regular Camry, I would choose the 4 cyl for better fuel economy.
A 2018 Camry would be about 2x-3x the OP’s stated price range.
Sorry about that . I did miss it.

I might look for a Camry (preferably 4 cyl) in that price range.

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topper1296
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Re: Car for 23 year old

Post by topper1296 » Sat Apr 21, 2018 11:00 am

I bought a used Acura TL when I was your age and drove it for 10 years with no regrets. It was an upscale car, but less expensive than a used Lexus or BMW and the maintenance cost was also very reasonable.

inbox788
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Re: Car for 23 year old

Post by inbox788 » Sat Apr 21, 2018 5:33 pm

jehovasfitness wrote:
Fri Apr 20, 2018 7:46 pm
strafe wrote:
Fri Apr 20, 2018 7:44 pm
jehovasfitness wrote:
Fri Apr 20, 2018 7:37 pm
bloom2708 wrote:
Fri Apr 20, 2018 7:32 pm
Used Lexus ES.

Find the nicest one owner with low miles in your price range.

I recently bought an 05 ES 330, 75k miles. $7k

Beautiful car. Toyota reliable.
Till the repair bills come
Why do you say that? The ES330 is a Camry with a nicer interior. I’ve never though of Toyotas as expensive to keep on the road. The 3MZ-FE motor is bulletproof.
Assumed they carried Lexus repair costs maybe not
My impression is Lexus is better than most other luxury brands. They're more reliable, and some popular models are really just dressed up Toyotas, but they've been designing more and more specific models and features, so you might get hit with unexpected high costs if something does break.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u_8VueuEtH8

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dm200
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Re: Car for 23 year old

Post by dm200 » Sun Apr 22, 2018 8:38 am

My impression is Lexus is better than most other luxury brands. They're more reliable, and some popular models are really just dressed up Toyotas, but they've been designing more and more specific models and features, so you might get hit with unexpected high costs if something does break.
Mine too.

Wikipedia has great articles on makes, models, etc. of vehicles and tells what models of vehicles are the same, nearly the same or based on the same basis. Toyota Avalon, for example, was once based on a stretched Camry - then based on similar Lexus. These articles also tell what model years of makes and models are the same or nearly the same. Toyota Camrys, for example, seem to be about the same for 5 model years - then a redesign.

As a recent purchaser of older Camrys, I find this very informative. [purchased 1998 in 2015 and 2002 in 2017]

mmmodem
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Re: Car for 23 year old

Post by mmmodem » Mon Apr 23, 2018 9:30 am

dm200 wrote:
Sat Apr 21, 2018 9:44 am
Is it correct, then, that a very similar Lexus to a Toyota will have higher repair bills? Why?
Not all parts are the same. It's simply supply and demand. More Toyota parts are made than Lexus parts and because of that scale, Toyota repair parts are less expensive.

A Prius and the Lexus CT share the same engine. The oil filter canister costs $55 at the dealer for the Prius. The Lexus one costs triple digits. I remember the service guy asking me which one I wanted. Is the Lexus one made out of metal while my Toyota one is made out of plastic? Is it really a different part? I don't know.

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dm200
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Re: Car for 23 year old

Post by dm200 » Mon Apr 23, 2018 9:57 am

mmmodem wrote:
Mon Apr 23, 2018 9:30 am
dm200 wrote:
Sat Apr 21, 2018 9:44 am
Is it correct, then, that a very similar Lexus to a Toyota will have higher repair bills? Why?
Not all parts are the same. It's simply supply and demand. More Toyota parts are made than Lexus parts and because of that scale, Toyota repair parts are less expensive.
A Prius and the Lexus CT share the same engine. The oil filter canister costs $55 at the dealer for the Prius. The Lexus one costs triple digits. I remember the service guy asking me which one I wanted. Is the Lexus one made out of metal while my Toyota one is made out of plastic? Is it really a different part? I don't know.
Good to know - unless in the future an older Lexus is a super deal - I may just stick with Toyotas. :)

SeaToTheBay
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Re: Car for 23 year old

Post by SeaToTheBay » Tue Apr 24, 2018 10:50 am

Grt2bOutdoors wrote:
Sat Apr 21, 2018 9:58 am
Parts are more expensive. Lexus is the Acura of a Honda. I had the oil pan go on my Honda Civic EX, the ex model used the Acura Integra engine, the difference in price was $275 and you had to buy the pan from the dealer only, there were no aftermarket parts.
The Civic EX has never shared an engine with the Acura Integra (unless you're talking 1991 or older Civic) - they used a completely different series of engine (D-series) vs. the Integra (B-series).

If you do a little research, you can usually find the compatible lower-brand OEM part and buy it online. Then an independent mechanic can swap it on. For something inconsequential like an oil pan, I'd even go to the junkyard before paying that much for just the part.

Mr400meterdash
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Re: Car for 23 year old

Post by Mr400meterdash » Mon Apr 30, 2018 12:33 pm

Thank you all for your suggestions! I will post again later when I decide what to get!

ssquared87
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Re: Car for 23 year old

Post by ssquared87 » Mon Apr 30, 2018 1:37 pm

Why get a new car at all?

You say the car doesn't run well...have you tried any basic trouble shooting ? Sometimes fuel systems get clogged up from using cheap fuel. Throw a bottle of Chevron Fuel system cleaner in next time you fuel up the car and see if that helps (you can usually buy it o'reily for less than $10 for a bottle). Perhaps your spark plugs need replacement...when those start to go engine will run rough. Spark plugs are cheap and easy fix as well. Maybe your air filter is clogged up. You can usually buy a new air filter on Amazon for less than $20 and a lot of cars you can install it without using any tools other than a screw driver in about 10 minutes. Youtube videos will show you how to change the air filter on youtube for your particular make and model

People tend to get nervous once a car starts running rough, but most of the time it can be fixed easily and cheaply. The other day my girlfriend told me she needed a new car because her's is making noises. Turns out the power steering fluid was damn near empty. $4.50 for a bottle of Power Steering Fluid from Honda, and about 45 seconds to open the hood and top off the tank and the sound went away along with her desire for a new car.

I would try to hold the car a little longer, as you are early in your career and building up an emergency fund and contributing to retirement account should be first priority before replacing a car if at all possible.

Y.A.Tittle
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Re: Car for 23 year old

Post by Y.A.Tittle » Mon Apr 30, 2018 7:45 pm

A 2008 Accord or Camry.

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