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Old 21st June 2012, 21:11   #961
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Default re: Buying, Owning, Driving and Maintaining a car in North America

Just get a $4k-$5k beater car for cash. Once you are assured of your stay in USA, get a better one from dealer. By then you will have good credit history, SSN and License. You won't have any problems getting loan, you won't need a co-signer and you will get better deals at end of the year.
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Old 21st June 2012, 21:45   #962
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When you buy american cars, you gotta pick the right ones. There are way too many choices and a lot of them are crap. However, if you stick to post 2006-07 models, they'll give any Japanese cars a good run for their money. Moreover, parts for non-american cars are higher. Japs greater than American was true for cars older than five years. In fact, if you look at the current models, I would say it's going the opposite way especially, for Ford and certain GM models.

Almost all current cars whether American, Japs or European will easily do about 250K miles if properly taken care of. But very few people keep them that long. Ever wonder why most cabs are Ford Crown Victoria. Those engines literally last for ever. Cabs are known to put around 500,000 miles and more on them. Moreover, almost any roadside mechanic can fix them cheap. How many japanese or european cars do you see as cabs here? Or, how many jap or european cars do you think can take the kinda abuse the cop cars take. Most people does not know that a lot of police cars rarely shuts off their engine.

Just pick a decently kept car for around $5000 to 6500 and keep it. Even if you buy a new car, keep it and put all your commuter miles (the worse kind of miles for your car) on that. Use the nice car for fun driving. That way you'll keep the new car in better shape, will get a better resale and, your insurance will be lower if you show that you use it for pleasure only.

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Old 21st June 2012, 22:04   #963
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When you buy american cars, you gotta pick the right ones. There are way too many choices and a lot of them are crap. However, if you stick to post 2006-07 models, they'll give any Japanese cars a good run for their money. Moreover, parts for non-american cars are higher.

Ever wonder why most cabs are Ford Crown Victoria. How many japanese or european cars do you see as cabs here? Or, how many jap or european cars do you think can take the kinda abuse the cop cars take.

Just pick a decently kept car for around $5000 to 6500 and keep it. Even if you buy a new car, keep it and put all your commuter miles (the worse kind of miles for your car) on that. Use the nice car for fun driving. That way you'll keep the new car in better shape, will get a better resale and, your insurance will be lower if you show that you use it for pleasure only.
That is the thing. you have to search for one. That too very hard and then hope they don't break. Not the case with Japanese car like camry, accord. Pick any year of those car and they will serve you. No condition like pick >2006 model or anything. A accord, civic, camry, corolla made in 96 with 300k mile will still run. Never saw a malibu or cavalier of that time running. If it is running it is in worst shape with parts hanging, noise coming from engine, squeaks when brakes applied. I have test drove all kind of such cars and trust me when i say, you won't want to buy those, you would also do anything to everything to avoid sitting in those cars. As for the parts. I buy it online and get it fixed from a mechanic. That way i save plenty compared to what is in stores. Example, Driver side mirror of my camry cost $60 in autozone. I got same one for $10 from amazon, installed it on my own. Took me 2 hours. The guys at Midas and Pepboys wanted $20 to install.

As for ford crown Victoria being used as taxi and cop car, you do know the actual reason why they use it, right? Its more about buying American than being used because of its reliability even though are highly capable. I in my wildest dream won't think the Federal and State Govt in USA will replace their garage of American SUVs and Cars with something Japanese or European.

My client had a crown Victoria. he had some 130k miles on it. He used it because his dog liked the space at back. But it had so many problems that he got tired of it and replaced it with accord. He is happy that he has not to worry about it breaking down or getting 15 mpg.

I hope you know that NYC taxi cabs are replacing crown Victoria with Nissan NV200. This created so much hoopla and anger among people that most were not happy with this change. But its about time they get a newer one. What to do if Ford is not competent and decided not to replace Crown Victoria with a newer version on a newer architecture.

And apart from this, now a days i do see lot more of Japanese Vans and sedans as taxi in LA, San Francisco and Sacramento downtown.

I do agree that one needs to maintain a car be it American/European. I also agree with your third para. I have done something similar.

Last edited by chevelle : 21st June 2012 at 22:09.
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Old 21st June 2012, 22:20   #964
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Of course, it's about buying american. But trust me, no japanese car will ever take the abuse of a NYC cab or a cop car. Like I said, if you buy cars like Malibu, Cavalier, Sunfire etc., gotta have your head examined. They're beyond crap.

Your friends' crown vic must've been a lemon for sure. I owned one (police interceptor) for one year. Absolutely no problem, 25 mpg mileage. My american colleague wouldn't let me go till I sold it to him. He still owns it and gives me the big grin even today. I think it has over 200k miles on it now.

I agree though most Indian families will be fine with the japanese cars. Personally, I do not like their paper thin metal and have never had any interest in owning them for my personal use and I probably never will. Exceptions are Nissan and some Mazda models. Owned a Nissan Patrol for couple of years. Now that was an SUV, loved it. After that I just don't get excited when I see the current models. They all look like little wusses to me. If that model was available, I would've bought it for my wife instead of the CX-9 Grand Tourer.
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Old 21st June 2012, 22:41   #965
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Your friends' crown vic must've been a lemon for sure. I owned one (police interceptor) for one year. Absolutely no problem, 25 mpg mileage. My american colleague wouldn't let me go till I sold it to him. He still owns it and gives me the big grin even today. I think it has over 200k miles on it now.

I agree though most Indian families will be fine with the japanese cars. Personally, I do not like their paper thin metal and have never had any interest in owning them for my personal use and I probably never will. Exceptions are Nissan and some Mazda models. Owned a Nissan Patrol for couple of years. Now that was an SUV, loved it. After that I just don't get excited when I see the current models. They all look like little wusses to me. If that model was available, I would've bought it for my wife instead of the CX-9 Grand Tourer.
That is nice mileage for a v8. My v6 doesn't give me that much. The crown victoria was owned by my Client in which i use to travel a lot with him. It certainly needed attention all the time. For a year or more he use to tell me that he is so fed up with this car but his dog won't go into any other car that he would bring home. So he kept it just for his dog. Talk about puppy love.

Its not that i won't consider an American models. My current hunt already has a camaro and corvette in it and supplemented by 370z. So i too have similar taste as yours. Nissan Patrol is an awesome SUV. I love it too. CX-9 is perfect for ladies. I see many of those at soccer games. After all soccer moms love those SUVs.

Check this one out. This came in today. Its the repair cost state wise.

http://www.insideline.com/car-news/c...s-in-2011.html

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Old 21st June 2012, 23:22   #966
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The police interceptors are awesome. Very difficult to find nowadays. They always maintained five star crash rating too, due to their beefed up front and rear ends. It was a great car. If you can pick one up for around $6k, get it as your daily driver. That's one mean looking car especially, with the police spec wheels. Of course, black is the only color for it.

CX-9s are pretty good. Being in Vegas, third row seating was a criteria with always someone visiting. Got a great deal, $35 OTR for $43K car (all options). No one else could come close to that deal. The array of options are pretty impressive for that price.

For you, Corvette man. Nothing else will do. Something about the Camaros rear end just jars me, too pedestrian for my taste. I prefer the Mustang models. If you're considering pony cars, test drive the top end Mustang too. You'll be surprised. I preferred the Mustangs' drive to the Camaros. A little more civilized I think. The new models are up there in power too. In any case, both of them are dime a dozen on the road though.
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Old 22nd June 2012, 00:21   #967
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if you buy cars like Malibu, Cavalier, Sunfire etc., gotta have your head examined. They're beyond crap.
I hope you are talking about used cars because the Cavalier and Sunfire have been out of production for half a decade.

The 2013 Malibu is a solid car based on Opel Vectra and is offered with an all new Ecotec 2.5 with best in class horsepower. (197) and optional turbo 2.0. My only grouse is that they are heavier than the competition.
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Old 22nd June 2012, 00:36   #968
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Yup, talking about the older models.

Exactly my point. The post 2006-'07 cars can compete with any models out there in its class.

Thanks Mpower.
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Old 22nd June 2012, 01:43   #969
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I hope you are talking about used cars because the Cavalier and Sunfire have been out of production for half a decade.

The 2013 Malibu is a solid car based on Opel Vectra and is offered with an all new Ecotec 2.5 with best in class horsepower. (197) and optional turbo 2.0. My only grouse is that they are heavier than the competition.
The current Eco is available with 183 hp. The new one is not expected to come until summer of 2013. That's a long wait. Competition would have moved on by then. I do hope it is as good to drive as its competition though initial reviews suggest it is average in performance, brakes are an issue and FE is dismal.

The new accord is also coming. I guess it will up the stakes a lot higher than malibu will. After all malibu has been a major fleet seller compared to accord which sells to family more.

Quote:
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If you can pick one up for around $6k, get it as your daily driver.

CX-9s are pretty good. Being in Vegas, third row seating was a criteria with always someone visiting. Got a great deal, $35 OTR for $43K car (all options). No one else could come close to that deal. The array of options are pretty impressive for that price.

For you, Corvette man. Nothing else will do. Something about the Camaros rear end just jars me, too pedestrian for my taste. I prefer the Mustang models. If you're considering pony cars, test drive the top end Mustang too. You'll be surprised. I preferred the Mustangs' drive to the Camaros. A little more civilized I think. The new models are up there in power too. In any case, both of them are dime a dozen on the road though.
I don't need a daily driver for now. Already have my hands full. I didn't knew you were in Vegas. I was there on memorial day weekend. If i would have known, i would have given you a shout out. May be next time.

I like the drive of camaro better than mustang. Mustang is all over the place at 70 mph+ speeds. Didn't felt that way in Camaro. I drove mustang from Vegas to Grand Canyon and it was a nightmare. I like the look of camaro more to mustang and feel interior of camaro is better than mustang. I am hoping the next gen mustang will be better what with independent suspension coming finally.

As for Corvette, that is very much under consideration. It will be either that or a brand new 370z unless some other vehicle comes into picture.

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Old 22nd June 2012, 01:48   #970
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The current Eco is available with 183 hp. The new one is not expected to come until summer of 2013. That's a long wait. Competition would have moved on by then. I do hope it is as good to drive as its competition though initial reviews suggest it is average in performance, brakes are an issue and FE is dismal.

The new accord is also coming. I guess it will up the stakes a lot higher than malibu will. After all malibu has been a major fleet seller compared to accord which sells to family more.
The Malibu sold today is the current one but launched with only the ECO version that used the older 2.4 Ecotec.

The regular Malibu was launched TODAY ! with the all new 2.5 liter GDI 197 hp engine. Link below

2013 Chevy Malibu priced at $23,150
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Old 22nd June 2012, 01:58   #971
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The Malibu sold today is the current one but launched with only the ECO version that used the older 2.4 Ecotec.

The regular Malibu was launched TODAY ! with the all new 2.5 liter GDI 197 hp engine. Link below

2013 Chevy Malibu priced at $23,150
This one does sound interesting. The turbo version is even more interesting with 259 hp. Too bad i am not much hunting in this segment.
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Old 22nd June 2012, 09:39   #972
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Probably a badly abused Mustang rental, Chevelle. Well, you know the story. Otherwise, these cars are pretty decent at high speed handling. Heck, my 97 'stang doesn't even break sweat at 100 mph, totally stock. I would love to get my hands on one of the 'Super Snake', who wouldn't with 1000 hp on tap.

Keep us posted with your selection.
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Old 22nd June 2012, 22:21   #973
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**Update**

Drove following cars and the initial impressions are listed

2013 Genesis Coupe Grand Touring (MSRP - $33K)

- Looks good in real life. Hate the fake vents on hood.
- Good feature list.
- Don't feel like it has 348 horses under hood.
- Drive was boring. Nothing to write home about. Especially after driving 370z and others. Handling on the freeway entry where i usually test all cars was not good. It was nervous and steering was light and unresponsive. I am sure R-Spec and Track will be better but they both don't come in auto.
- In D mode, it shifts very early. Hate that. Power doesn't come as eagerly as say a 370z.
- Nice exhaust sound.
- Using paddle shifters is a pain. They rotate with the steering so it is hard to know which one is up shift and which one is down shift.
- Interior is good for $27k car what with leather at right places and good feel switches. 370z is still better but the difference is $5k so it good.
- Interior space is good. View outside is good too unlike 370z.
- Wind noise at 75 mph. At 70 mph its very quiet.
- Price. The MSRP is $33k for Grand Touring. Without me showing any willingness the guy was ready to give it away for $27k+ taxes + fees. So i am sure resale value won't be as good as say a 370z or 335i coupe.
- Awesome warranty. Great safety ratings.

2012 Camaro 1LT ($27k)

- Looks, looks and looks.
- Very nice exhaust sound
- Good power from a v6.
- Mods should be easy.
- Cabin is a little smaller than GC GT. But liveable.
- Interiors have been improved from what it was in 2010 camaro
- Better handling than GC. Not a match to 370z. Heaviness comes into play.
- Tight headroom.
- Visibility outside is like 370z. Have to rely on mirrors a lot.
- Great ride quality.
- FE is a question mark as its quite heavy.
- No wind noise up to 75 mph.
- Resale value won't be good.


2010 BMW 335i Coupe ($35k)

- Looks awesome.
- Top notch inside and outside Quality, fit and finish
- Suspension is taut. Super handling. Just like 370z.
- Felt each and every bump on my regular test track that has not the best road
- Excellent steering. Point and shoot. Class all over.
- A little wind noise at 75 mph. Tire noise is non existent.
- Visibility is good. No issues here.
- Headroom and space is good. Entry exit is not easy
- A little expensive for pre-owned. Extended warranty a must.
- FE is unknown.
- N54 has problems. Have to stick to N55.

All prices are negotiable. Just listed them to give all an idea about the pricing of models. The above opinion is strictly mine. Please don't take offense.

Last edited by chevelle : 22nd June 2012 at 22:24.
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Old 23rd June 2012, 01:43   #974
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Default re: Buying, Owning, Driving and Maintaining a car in North America

Nice going there, Chevelle. Mouth watering rides, except for the Genesis i feel.

Anyway, I have a question about buying a new car. If the dealer does not have the car that i want in his inventory, then how soon can he get it for me? A dealer close to where i stay says he can get it in a day or two. Its a dodge charger, of course. Is that reasonable timeframe? Also, i suppose a car on the dealer lot gives the buyer an advantage from bargaining point of view. How much of that advantage do i lose if the car is not from the dealer's inventory? These RTs seem to be moving fast though from dealer lots. Two are already gone within a week, and they dont keep more than 3 or 4 max.

Also, is a Purchase and Sales agreement final? That is, I have to buy the car once i sign it?

Thanks in advance for all your help!
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Old 23rd June 2012, 01:54   #975
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**Update**


- Awesome warranty. Great safety ratings.

- FE is a question mark as its quite heavy.


- Resale value won't be good.
All GM cars come with 7 yr 100,000 mile powertrain warranty..same as hyundai.

Camaro is rated at 30 hwy. yes its about 300 lbs heavier than Mustang unfortunately. I have my eyes on a black one
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