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Discussion Starter #1
I am in the market for a used car. (for the wife) I am tired of putting money into her clunker (92 buick skylark) I am wondering what kind of car i can pick up for 2k (including transfer and plates etc.).

She wants something bigger than the buick. A used trep would be ideal but I cant find any in that price range. Any ideas on what type to look for or anyone know anyone somewhat close to pittsburgh pa selling something decent?
 

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My Tempo isn't bigger than your Skylark is it? :p 60,000 miles :)
 

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Discussion Starter #6
yep.
 

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Tauruses are good cars
My dad's 97 has got 76K and still runs minnnt
hasnt needed anything but a new wheel bearing at 55K
good deal, how many miles??
too bad its a ford though... :D
 

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Fords are terrible........anyone want to buy mine? :p
 

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For $2000 you should be able to get most anything from the early to mid-1990s in good condition with low mileage. Luminas, Centurys, Tauruses, Sables, Intrepids, Concordes, Cieras, Cutlass Supremes, Grand Prixs, Bonnevilles, LeSabres, 88's, etc...

I think one of the better used car buys these days would be the 92-96 LeSabre and 91-96 Park Avenue. It's a Buick, she'll be used to the Dynaride tuning on the suspension, they seat six, they are huge, and they have the best engine GM ever made, the 3.8 liter Buick V6. Some Park Avenues (Ultras) even have the supercharged 3.8 engine. They are also some of the least stolen used cars out there, and have airbags and ABS standard on most of them. I'd go for a black on black leather Park Avenue myself. Autotrader.com, ebaymotors.com, cars.com, should have plenty to show you. Olds 88 (LeSabre), Olds 98 (Park Avenue), and Pontiac Bonneville (LeSabre), are similar cars and will work as well, though Bonnevilles are driven harder.

I would avoid Tauruses and Sables unless they are VERY well-kept. Avoid the 3.8 engine at all costs, even if it "has already been fixed". Problems (head gaskets, blown heads) in those motors occur as early as 50K, late as 150K, and you will spend over $800, probably closer to $1200, to fix it. Try to find one that has already had the transmission rebuilt by a well-known shop, as they also fail around 80K-140K, and are very labor-intensive and expensive (think more like $1800-$2000) to fix. Also, be on the lookout for leaking rack & pinions ($300-$500), bad power steering pumps ($200-$400), leaking water pumps ($400-$600), and clicking or binding axles (Taurus axles are difficult to replace, $200-$300 each). A gently driven Taurus will last a long time, as I have seen many with well over 200,000 miles, but an abused one will fall apart and cost more to repair than the initial used purchase price.

Lumina/Century/Cutlass Supreme/Intrigue/Grand Prix W-bodies are great cars, have a strong following, and are generally easy to repair and trouble-free. Don't buy an ex-taxi Lumina unless it's under $500 and you're ready to put in your own powertrain. Century is your best bet here, since its a Buick, and 1997-1998 models should be close to $2000 if you look hard enough. Older Century and Cutlass Ciera are A-bodies, also reliable, but not much bigger than an N-body Skylark. 3.1 V6 is your best engine in any of these, though some could have that 3.8 V6. A-bodies will have a 2.5 (thru 1993) or 2.2 (1994-1996) four, the 3.1 V6, or the 3.3 V6, which is a cutdown of the 3.8.

Intrepid/Concorde/New Yorker/LHS/Vision are also great cars, and you can read all about them on this forum. IMO, 3.3 engines are best, and go for a 1996 or 1997 model which will have the most updated transmission. Even better, find one with a recently replaced transmission which will have the latest programming and such. I prefer the Concorde myself, with column shift and 6-passenger cloth seating.
 

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occupant said:
For $2000 you should be able to get most anything from the early to mid-1990s in good condition with low mileage. Luminas, Centurys, Tauruses, Sables, Intrepids, Concordes, Cieras, Cutlass Supremes, Grand Prixs, Bonnevilles, LeSabres, 88's, etc...

I think one of the better used car buys these days would be the 92-96 LeSabre and 91-96 Park Avenue. It's a Buick, she'll be used to the Dynaride tuning on the suspension, they seat six, they are huge, and they have the best engine GM ever made, the 3.8 liter Buick V6. Some Park Avenues (Ultras) even have the supercharged 3.8 engine. They are also some of the least stolen used cars out there, and have airbags and ABS standard on most of them. I'd go for a black on black leather Park Avenue myself. Autotrader.com, ebaymotors.com, cars.com, should have plenty to show you. Olds 88 (LeSabre), Olds 98 (Park Avenue), and Pontiac Bonneville (LeSabre), are similar cars and will work as well, though Bonnevilles are driven harder.

I would avoid Tauruses and Sables unless they are VERY well-kept. Avoid the 3.8 engine at all costs, even if it "has already been fixed". Problems (head gaskets, blown heads) in those motors occur as early as 50K, late as 150K, and you will spend over $800, probably closer to $1200, to fix it. Try to find one that has already had the transmission rebuilt by a well-known shop, as they also fail around 80K-140K, and are very labor-intensive and expensive (think more like $1800-$2000) to fix. Also, be on the lookout for leaking rack & pinions ($300-$500), bad power steering pumps ($200-$400), leaking water pumps ($400-$600), and clicking or binding axles (Taurus axles are difficult to replace, $200-$300 each). A gently driven Taurus will last a long time, as I have seen many with well over 200,000 miles, but an abused one will fall apart and cost more to repair than the initial used purchase price.

Lumina/Century/Cutlass Supreme/Intrigue/Grand Prix W-bodies are great cars, have a strong following, and are generally easy to repair and trouble-free. Don't buy an ex-taxi Lumina unless it's under $500 and you're ready to put in your own powertrain. Century is your best bet here, since its a Buick, and 1997-1998 models should be close to $2000 if you look hard enough. Older Century and Cutlass Ciera are A-bodies, also reliable, but not much bigger than an N-body Skylark. 3.1 V6 is your best engine in any of these, though some could have that 3.8 V6. A-bodies will have a 2.5 (thru 1993) or 2.2 (1994-1996) four, the 3.1 V6, or the 3.3 V6, which is a cutdown of the 3.8.

Intrepid/Concorde/New Yorker/LHS/Vision are also great cars, and you can read all about them on this forum. IMO, 3.3 engines are best, and go for a 1996 or 1997 model which will have the most updated transmission. Even better, find one with a recently replaced transmission which will have the latest programming and such. I prefer the Concorde myself, with column shift and 6-passenger cloth seating.
Not that I'm looking, but that's really good info there. :)
 

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Discussion Starter #11
The only problems on the car where the water pump needed replaced. The car had all kinds of maintanence records in the glove box. It was traded in at a local dealer and sold at an auction because it has 120k on the odometer (I used to work at the dealers sister store so I know there policies pretty well) It has new tires and My dad (a mechanic who looked the car over before i bought it) changed the oil and tranny fluid and water pump and thermostat today and said everything looks in tip top shape.

We bid on a trep but because it had aftermarket rims on it some homie kept raising the bid. The car was in good shape but needed tires and had a chip in the windshield. I let him go with it if he wanted the rims that bad!!!

There where a few more treps and a corde up after we bid on the taurus, but we won the auction for that one and my wife liked it so that is what I took.

It has the 3.0 vulcan (?) motor, power windows, locks, tilt, cruise and a full size spare with a new tire on it. it rides pretty nice, not a replacement for the trep mind you but good enough for her until she is done with school and she can get the car she wants ( either a purple magnum or off white 300c)
 
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