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Old 12th September 2011, 22:11   #466
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Default Re: Buying a car in USA. New, used, etc.

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The more I look at cars.com and autotrader, the more tempting Mustang seems to me. Even a V6, for its sheer looks and the fact that it is a RWD (even then I guess it will have acceleration slightly better than 4-cylinder cars, right?). Especially the 1999 to 2004 Mustang (my all time favorite design) are available for around $5000 to $7000, in some cases much less.

What is your opinion on used Mustangs?

Also, why not us Indians buy manual transmission cars? The only reason I can think of against it is those traffic jams, but do those jams happen every day in Bay Area? Also, how easy it is to steer with the left hand? (we are used to shifting with the left hand and steering with the right). There are lots and lots of opinions on this on the web, but I want a bhpian's perspective on this...
I drove recently a 2010 Mustang v6 with 15k miles on board for about 700 miles. It was such a forgettable experience. I would never want to own one of these. For one, i didn't find its power good enough. My 2005 infiniti g35 goes faster than that. Also the interior sucked big time. The seats were very uncomfortable. While i won't comment on the maintaining it i would say, its not a easy car to live with.

You can get other good RWDs for similar price if you hunt around. Don't forget to check craigslist for some good deals. MT cars are good, but pain to drive in traffic. My friend had a eclipse manual. Too many problems, had transmission rebuild, clutch replaced 2-3 times in 30k miles. Bay area traffic does get worse during peak hours. Its usually bumper to bumper. But a MT is a MT, there is no other fun when driving a stick shift. If you love it, get it. Also it is important to consider how many miles of commuting you will do. I do 50 miles a day, so for me, its a no-no. But for some who does 10-20 miles, it will be fun.

Go with what your heart says. You won't regret it.
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Old 12th September 2011, 22:26   #467
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Default Re: Buying a car in USA. New, used, etc.

^^ Agree that Mustangs aren't the most comforting, but its again the way you look at it. Mustangs are stiff ride and engine aren't as smooth we have in the Jap cars.

Totally agree with chevelle on his points, even I have a couple of friends who dislike the Mustangs interiors. Like I said earlier the V6 isnt the best around but it does give the oomph value.
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Old 12th September 2011, 22:35   #468
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Default Re: Buying a car in USA. New, used, etc.

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^^ Agree that Mustangs aren't the most comforting, but its again the way you look at it. Mustangs are stiff ride and engine aren't as smooth we have in the Jap cars.

Totally agree with chevelle on his points, even I have a couple of friends who dislike the Mustangs interiors. Like I said earlier the V6 isnt the best around but it does give the oomph value.
Kraft: I was more uncomfortable about the way we sat inside. The seat are not supportive for long drives. Its for all 4 seats. The cushioning is not good, the seats are not easy to fit in and everything feels kinda cheap for a 2010.

I agree, the ride is rough, to much noise filters in, but it was good to drive at 95 mph but made lots of noise. It felt so 'tractor-ish'.

My pick in Mustangs will be GT500 or Shelby. No other will do
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Old 12th September 2011, 23:27   #469
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Default Re: Buying a car in USA. New, used, etc.

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Kraft: I was more uncomfortable about the way we sat inside. The seat are not supportive for long drives. Its for all 4 seats. The cushioning is not good, the seats are not easy to fit in and everything feels kinda cheap for a 2010.

I agree, the ride is rough, to much noise filters in, but it was good to drive at 95 mph but made lots of noise. It felt so 'tractor-ish'.

My pick in Mustangs will be GT500 or Shelby. No other will do
Lol nothing to beat the Shelbys

Totally agree the newer models have a very cheap finish interiors.. And yea it aint called tractor-ish its muscular
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Old 13th September 2011, 03:20   #470
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Default Re: Buying a car in USA. New, used, etc.

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Lol nothing to beat the Shelbys

Totally agree the newer models have a very cheap finish interiors.. And yea it aint called tractor-ish its muscular
Wish i could call it muscular. But it isn't so. They lost it in v6 form.
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Old 13th September 2011, 20:27   #471
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Default Re: Buying a car in USA. New, used, etc.

@chevelle: compared to an Infiniti G35... well, yes. But compared to a Civic or say a Cobalt?

(talking real cheap budget fun here..)
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Old 13th September 2011, 23:35   #472
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Default Re: Buying a car in USA. New, used, etc.

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@chevelle: compared to an Infiniti G35... well, yes. But compared to a Civic or say a Cobalt?

(talking real cheap budget fun here..)
I compared with G35 because of following reason

RWD, 280hp-300hp, FTD, same price category. But huge difference between the two. One is muscle car another is a premium segment coupe.

Would never ever compare it to a civic or cobalt. As different as chalks and cheese.
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Old 18th September 2011, 19:15   #473
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Default Re: Buying a car in USA. New, used, etc.

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Originally Posted by rajushank84 View Post

Also, why not us Indians buy manual transmission cars? The only reason I can think of against it is those traffic jams, but do those jams happen every day in Bay Area? Also, how easy it is to steer with the left hand? (we are used to shifting with the left hand and steering with the right). There are lots and lots of opinions on this on the web, but I want a bhpian's perspective on this...
I had only manual transmission cars in the US. The advantage I feel is on the interstate when I need to pass a slower car or truck.

Drop a gear, rev match and then vroom.

In an automatic , you mash the pedal down and pray for it to shift down soon.
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Old 22nd September 2011, 13:37   #474
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Default Owning a car in Canada queries..

Guys any tips on the scene in Canada(Toronto) for someone looking for a decent sporty car ?
Insurance rate : I heard the insurance rates of owning a car are very high..is it true ?
Car maintenance/servicing : Is this also on the expensive side ?

Are these 2 comparable to the rates in US ? or is it a bit on the higher side ?
Does the type of car really make a big difference on the insurance rates ?
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Old 25th September 2011, 23:56   #475
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Default re: Buying, Owning, Driving and Maintaining a car in North America

Looks like quite a few Ford Focuses (around 2000-2002) are there online for less than $5000.

Are Focuses generally good?

(I mean, I know they're based on the same European ancestry as our Figo, Ikon etc and have good dynamics... but are they good to own used, say eight or ten years used)?

Side note: Somehow when it comes to older used cars (pre-2002), I like the looks of Ford cars esp Mustang, don't mind the Focus, even Crown Victoria. Somehow the old-gen Civics / Corollas / Camrys don't appeal to me visually. Maybe it's just a personal kink.

Last edited by rajushank84 : 25th September 2011 at 23:59.
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Old 26th September 2011, 01:18   #476
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Default re: Buying, Owning, Driving and Maintaining a car in North America

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Originally Posted by rajushank84 View Post
Looks like quite a few Ford Focuses (around 2000-2002) are there online for less than $5000.

Are Focuses generally good?

(I mean, I know they're based on the same European ancestry as our Figo, Ikon etc and have good dynamics... but are they good to own used, say eight or ten years used)?

Side note: Somehow when it comes to older used cars (pre-2002), I like the looks of Ford cars esp Mustang, don't mind the Focus, even Crown Victoria. Somehow the old-gen Civics / Corollas / Camrys don't appeal to me visually. Maybe it's just a personal kink.
Focus during that years has reliability problems. Engine problems included replacing EGR Cover and Gasket which could be a lot. Also it had problems with heater blower which had to be replaced. Also, new focus are available for $13k-$15k, so i don't see point spending $5k for 8-11 year old focus. I would rather have a Mustang or some other sedan with power to match.
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Old 26th September 2011, 01:43   #477
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Default re: Buying, Owning, Driving and Maintaining a car in North America

Thanks again chevelle, really appreciate your answers to all my questions and sorry to keep posting more questions, do let me know if it is getting irritating . Just that too many thoughts running in mind...

What's your take on say, a manual Mustang V6 1999 or 2000 model for say 4k?
(something like this: 2000 ford mustang)

Also one more newbie question: Is it possible to transfer money (rupees) in our Indian bank accounts (like ICICI), to a bank account in US? If so, how?
(asking this because, I am thinking of directly putting proceeds from car sale here to car purchase there, and if i keep it within say $4k to $5k, I wouldn't have to go looking for loans. The whole craigslist world will open up as long as I can be careful not to buy a bad car).
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Old 26th September 2011, 03:40   #478
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Default re: Buying, Owning, Driving and Maintaining a car in North America

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Originally Posted by rajushank84 View Post
Thanks again chevelle, really appreciate your answers to all my questions and sorry to keep posting more questions, do let me know if it is getting irritating . Just that too many thoughts running in mind...

What's your take on say, a manual Mustang V6 1999 or 2000 model for say 4k?
(something like this: 2000 ford mustang)

Also one more newbie question: Is it possible to transfer money (rupees) in our Indian bank accounts (like ICICI), to a bank account in US? If so, how?
(asking this because, I am thinking of directly putting proceeds from car sale here to car purchase there, and if i keep it within say $4k to $5k, I wouldn't have to go looking for loans. The whole craigslist world will open up as long as I can be careful not to buy a bad car).
Oh, please don't worry. The pleasure is all mine. Keep posting questions since i was recently in market for a used car i went through all the pain you are going through. So everything is fresh of my mind.

The Mustang in link looks good. But from 1999-2002, Mustang had AIR Pump, Fuel Pump and the Differential Pressure Feedback EGR (DPFE) Sensor problems which could make a huge dent in your pocket if something of the above was to go wrong. I would pay maximum of $3400 for the mustang in the link. Also will have to check for its history, carfax and also do check for frame damage, consistent VIN across doors and hoods, paint, suspension, gearbox, battery and then some more. So a picture doesn't say much, just gives us an idea of what you are looking for.

Always check kbb.com/used cars for approximate price. Usually, you pay same price or less than kbb quoted. Many people who are unaware of kbb end up paying more. I paid $2750 less than dealer price on kbb while buying G35 and paid $400 less than kbb quoted price of camry 5 months back which owner was asking.

I used to see cars on craigslist which would look very good in pics, when i went to see it in person, it would have lots of problems. So its better to check in person. If you find it good, show them cash and they will willingly go down on quoted price.

You can take HDFC forex card from India and put your $4k-$5k in it. ICICI must have something similar but i am not aware of it. Once you arrive here, you can withdraw from any ATM and use it with a minimal fee(IIRC 50cents for $1000 withdrawal). You can also bring cash for that amount and/or traveler's check. TC takes longest time to encash so i would not prefer it, but many do. Even ICICI has bank in Bay area, so you can use it get money from you account in India. So once you are here, you can open a bank account and then transfer money.

IMHO, buying outright with cash is a much better option than taking loans especially since you don't have a credit history. Also, you can buy it anytime with cash after you get your social security number(SSN) as cash is the king my friend.

Sorry for long post
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Old 8th October 2011, 01:10   #479
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Default re: Buying, Owning, Driving and Maintaining a car in North America

It happened that one of my friends who moved to US recently got a brand new Acccord, it worked out to around 24k and he's taken a 5-yr loan for it. That got me thinking along the same lines, though a 3-year loan (or max max 4 year) would be more my cup of tea.

Well, I discovered one surprising thing: Top-end subcompacts and base-model midsize sedans are priced almost the same!!

For example:
- Civic EX-L is priced almost the same as Accord LX. Similar power output, around 600lbs weight difference, almost same dimensions, similar acceleration. Only a few things like Bluetooth etc will be missing with the base Accord compared to Civic EX-L.

- Mazda3 sSport and base Mazda6 are similarly priced, with exactly the same engine. Not much weight difference, and even in dimensions only length is more. Most features are same, again with things like Bluetooth missing in base-model Mazda6.

This gets me thinking: Why does anyone go for a Civic/Mazda3 top-end models? Why not base Accord/Mazda6 instead?

Anyway... these are the following cars that I have in mind to test-drive once I hit US:
- Mazda3
- Mazda6
- Civic
- Accord
- Focus
- Golf

(Nissans, Toyotas, Chevys left out due to personal taste, that irrational factor ).

I initially had dreams about Fiesta but too many articles/reviewers say that it is underpowered at 120hp.

Comments are welcome.

Last edited by rajushank84 : 8th October 2011 at 01:11.
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Old 8th October 2011, 02:15   #480
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Default re: Buying, Owning, Driving and Maintaining a car in North America

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Originally Posted by rajushank84 View Post
This gets me thinking: Why does anyone go for a Civic/Mazda3 top-end models? Why not base Accord/Mazda6 instead?

Anyway... these are the following cars that I have in mind to test-drive once I hit US:
- Mazda3
- Mazda6
- Civic
- Accord
- Focus
- Golf

Comments are welcome.
US is a paradise for pre-owned cars, I wouldn't really suggest you to go for one. Reason being if you are ready to shell ~$25k for a new Accord, you rather buy a 2008 and higher model with low miles for easily less than $15k~$18k or even less. And you also have the same advantages of a new car, like carry forward the warranty.
Since you are sure to stay here for over 4yrs, getting a 2008 model with around 20k miles, can easily serve you hassle free.
I would stay away from the Focus be is pre owned or new, reliability being a major concern and also the interiors looks tad too cheap.

Fellow BHPian, akbaree owns a 2007 Mazda 6 V6, you could PM him for details.

Again like I said before, fix a budget and then you can ponder over the enormous choices you have here for your budget.
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