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Old 6th October 2013, 12:29   #3331
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Default Re: Buying, Owning, Driving and Maintaining a car in North America

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Guys, need help.

A friend moved to US this week. He wants to buy a used car for temporary use and plans to buy a new car after 6-8 months, when he feels settled.

His budget is $7000 max. So what are the options in this range? Of course his preference is with Toyota, Honda and Nissan, but wouldn't mind other brands as well. I don't have much exp with used market as I bought a new car right away when I came here.

This is in Bay Area btw.
You can start by inquiring within friends circle and in your workplace if anybody is selling a car. That is the fastest way to find a used car. My colleague sold his 2001 G20 to another colleague for all of $2000.

Similarly, inquire within your circle and see if you come up with something. Else Craigslist, is your best friend.

Obviously, if your friend has 2-3 years of visa, he can get a new entry level car say a civic or so. I just heard on radio, 2014 Altima is selling for $18k only. I think it is base model but you get an idea of how low the prices are. Check those out too.
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Old 7th October 2013, 08:03   #3332
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We saw a 2007 Corolla CE today. Car seems to be in good condition. It has done 78k miles and owner is asking for 8k USD. We ran carfax and it came out clean. It has recent history records till July 2013. He even mentioned one minor front collision where he got the bumper replaced under insurance, but it doesn't show up on carfax.

Does this sound reasonable? KBB good value is 7.5k. What else can be checked?

Last edited by Gandhi : 7th October 2013 at 08:05.
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Old 7th October 2013, 11:58   #3333
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Default Re: Buying, Owning, Driving and Maintaining a car in North America

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Originally Posted by Gandhi View Post
We saw a 2007 Corolla CE today. Car seems to be in good condition. It has done 78k miles and owner is asking for 8k USD. We ran carfax and it came out clean. It has recent history records till July 2013. He even mentioned one minor front collision where he got the bumper replaced under insurance, but it doesn't show up on carfax.

Does this sound reasonable? KBB good value is 7.5k. What else can be checked?
I'd suggest having it checked with a local mechanic or Pepboys. Usually they charge around $80 for inspection, its better to know the mechanical condition of the car from them in addition to the carfax. Not sure if the corolla has a timing belt, generally around 80-85k miles it has to be replaced.
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Old 7th October 2013, 20:49   #3334
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Default Re: Buying, Owning, Driving and Maintaining a car in North America

Corolla has a timing chain. Check whether all body panels have VIN tags and check underbody for rust.
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Old 8th October 2013, 01:33   #3335
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Default Re: Buying, Owning, Driving and Maintaining a car in North America

For all BHPians in California.

CA DMV has come out with this program where you can pre-order a legacy number plate for $50. There are 3 color options from 1950s, 1960s and 1970s. All 3 look better than current boring white and blue plates.

Check out more details here - http://www.dmv.ca.gov/legacyplates/index.htm

Buying, Owning, Driving and Maintaining a car in North America-legacy_index_banner.jpg

I'm still thinking about ordering, not yet decided.

EDIT: You will get the plate only if there are 7500 pre-orders for that particular plate, otherwise the money will be refunded.

Last edited by Gandhi : 8th October 2013 at 01:34.
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Old 8th October 2013, 02:15   #3336
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gandhi View Post
We saw a 2007 Corolla CE today. Car seems to be in good condition. It has done 78k miles and owner is asking for 8k USD. We ran carfax and it came out clean. It has recent history records till July 2013. He even mentioned one minor front collision where he got the bumper replaced under insurance, but it doesn't show up on carfax.

Does this sound reasonable? KBB good value is 7.5k. What else can be checked?
Try 6.5k-7k. If it had a collision why pay more than kbb? Check nada guides for better idea.

Since front was damaged, check frame and paint from inside the engine compartment.fat it checked from a mechanic who knows this stuff.you have a good weapon in your hand to negotiate, that is of collision. Use that to your advantage and if you like it but it.

Collisions may not show up on carfax if it was not reported.

I would be wary of buying a vehicle that was in a accident. If everything checks out fine.Get it but negotiate hard
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Old 8th October 2013, 02:31   #3337
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Default Re: Buying, Owning, Driving and Maintaining a car in North America

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Try 6.5k-7k. If it had a collision why pay more than kbb? Check nada guides for better idea.

Since front was damaged, check frame and paint from inside the engine compartment.fat it checked from a mechanic who knows this stuff.you have a good weapon in your hand to negotiate, that is of collision. Use that to your advantage and if you like it but it.

Collisions may not show up on carfax if it was not reported.

I would be wary of buying a vehicle that was in a accident. If everything checks out fine.Get it but negotiate hard
Thanks chevelle. All good points. I guess getting it checked by a mechanic is the way to go.
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Old 8th October 2013, 19:12   #3338
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I have a problem. My car when engaged in D (Idle) or P or R mode makes a bit of rattling noise(The Noise goes away if I shift to N). I cant really pin point where the sound is coming. The sound is unobtrusive, and i wont hear it with windows rolled. There is no noise when the car is motion, its when I stop at signals or am waiting with Gear in D mode, the noise is audible. The noise again doesn't come during start up, its only there after the car has sufficiently warmed up.

I had checked on some Mazda forums and it mentioned about Loose Exhaust Manifold or exhaust donut(?) or Tensioner belt replacement. I had taken it to a local garage and he was not able to diagnose it.

Shall i leave it alone and not be bothered about it?

Note : There is no difference car's driving dynamics or drivability because of this. Its just that noise make the car sound like a clunker.
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Old 8th October 2013, 21:37   #3339
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Look at the heat sheilds on the body which covers the exhaust pipe under it. I think it is missing a bolt and one edge might be touching the exhaust pipe causing the rattle.
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Old 9th October 2013, 03:33   #3340
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Default Re: Buying, Owning, Driving and Maintaining a car in North America

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Look at the heat sheilds on the body which covers the exhaust pipe under it.
Thanks Jomz, I checked and it looks to be tight. While i was under it , I checked everything and i couldnt find anything lose.

Mazda forum seems to be talking about Belt Tensioner, What is it and how critical is it? Would there be a problem if I dont do anything about it? I dont want to yet take it to the dealer.
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Old 9th October 2013, 23:43   #3341
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Default Re: Buying, Owning, Driving and Maintaining a car in North America

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Thanks Jomz, I checked and it looks to be tight. While i was under it , I checked everything and i couldnt find anything lose.

Mazda forum seems to be talking about Belt Tensioner, What is it and how critical is it? Would there be a problem if I dont do anything about it? I dont want to yet take it to the dealer.
Check for tension on the belt. When you press on the belt if is goes more than an Inch, then the tension needs to be adjusted.

If it is too tight , so that it does not move, then also the tension needs to be adjusted.

If the tension looks fine, run some soap on the blt and see whether that fixes the problem

http://www.wikihow.com/Quiet-a-Noisy-Fan-Belt
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Old 10th October 2013, 00:00   #3342
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Default Re: Buying, Owning, Driving and Maintaining a car in North America

So i test drove the 2014 Pathfinder yesterday. Its quite ok on space. Does not have a captain seat configuration for second row, but the second row slides forward enough to ease entry to 3rd row. In fact, the 3rd was more spacious than the Traverse. Also, the 2nd row seats have a back tilt mechanism which can give more knee room to the third row.
On the drive part, it handles well for an SUV of its size and the ride seemed more composed than the Traverse. However, i instantly disliked the CVT. I guess it is a matter of getting used to it. It is supposed to be good for FE.
About the dealer, the lesser said the better. I anyway knew that no matter what, this is not the dealer i will buy the vehicle from because this dealer is known for being too a very aggressive seller and does not give good deals too. I know they will rip me off on the trade in too. But since they are the closest Nissan dealer and i just needed to see the vehicle in person, i decided to go there.
Overall, the Pathfinder has made it to the second round
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Old 10th October 2013, 00:13   #3343
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Default Re: Buying, Owning, Driving and Maintaining a car in North America

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About the dealer, the lesser said the better. I anyway knew that no matter what, this is not the dealer i will buy the vehicle from because this dealer is known for being too a very aggressive seller and does not give good deals too. I know they will rip me off on the trade in too. But since they are the closest Nissan dealer and i just needed to see the vehicle in person, i decided to go there.
Overall, the Pathfinder has made it to the second round
Before trading in, drive the car to carmax and see what they offer. Their quote could be used as a benchmark / negotiation leverage for trade in/ private party sales.
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Old 10th October 2013, 02:26   #3344
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GM Prods Dealers to Sell Cars Online

Hmm. GM is trying to reach a wider population by going online. I wonder though whether this will enable people to get more discount, specially when dealers are trying to get rid of previous model year's inventory by giving deep discounts.

EDIT: Also found this article/pamphlet that teaches you how to get dealers to bid against each other and get you a really good deal! I should memorize this article by heart!!
CarBargain_Secrets

Last edited by amitoj : 10th October 2013 at 02:49.
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Old 11th October 2013, 22:34   #3345
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We usuallly have the the 3rd row down but have had no problems for grocery runs with the 3rd row up. Plenty of room.
I will be checking out the CX-9 today. Is there anything in particular that I should pay attention to? Good or bad?
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