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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey all,

So, I am in a bit of a pickle.

I have a 2006 Solstice that I LOVE and am keeping until the wheels fall off. I also, about a year ago, bought a '96 Olds 88 with 90K mi. The Olds now has 100K mi, and needs a serpentine belt, intake manifold, etc...

I can:

1- Pay $1300 to fix the Olds (that I paid $1500 for)

2- Buy another old beater that I can pay cash for (under $3000.) Recommendations welcome if you think this is the way to go.

3- Buy a new car. Ideally, I would like to lease an Audi A3, but I can't afford it. I want a hatch/small wagon, and I am looking at price, reliability, and it being something that I won't hate going outside and driving, since it will be my daily driver. Price is a huge concern, since the Solstice is not paid off yet, and carrying two car payments myself is not something I wanted to do, but I don't want a car that will die again like the Olds.

Having done some research, the best value / nice looking / best driving car in this category, is: (Gasp!) The Kia Spectra 5. I can get one for 15,000 with a stick, sport suspension, and 0% financing for 60 months. It is actually kinda slick. I would LOVE a GM product, but there is nothing that speaks to me. The Vibe is too much money, the HHR is funky, but does not drive as well as the spectra, and the Astra interior is too austere (and there are no incentives.)

Help!
 

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http://www.cars.com/go/search/search_results.jsp?tracktype=usedcc&searchType=21&sort=true&pageNumber=0&numResultsPerPage=50&largeNumResultsPerPage=0&sortorder=ascending&sortfield=MILES%2cPRICE+descending&certifiedOnly=false&criteria=K-%7cE-%7cM-_42_%7cD-_7612_%7cN-N%7cR-10000%7cI-1%7cP-PRICE+descending%7cQ-descending%7cZ-35758&sortId=&aff=national

How about a slightly used SAAB 9-2X?

Also, for non-GM consideration

I would go with a 2001-2005 Hyundai Elantra GT. I owned one for five years with zero problems. They can be found pretty easy on the internet and they depreciate pretty quickly. Change the timing belt and you should have not issues with it after that.

Or a base Suzuki SX4.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
so, good idea on the Elantra GT. They are great cars and actually I think it is the same engine/tranny as the Spectra. The thing is: If it is more then 3000 I need to finance, and I dont want to finance a 5 year old car, you know?
 

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If the Olds is otherwise solid, I would go that route.
 

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so, good idea on the Elantra GT. They are great cars and actually I think it is the same engine/tranny as the Spectra. The thing is: If it is more then 3000 I need to finance, and I dont want to finance a 5 year old car, you know?
When I traded my 2001 Elantra GT with 53,000 miles on it in Oct 2006 for my LaCrosse, I got a whopping $3750. It was pretty much flawless as I maintained it well and like to keep my rides clean inside and out. With another year depreciation you may be able to find one in the $4500-$5000 range.

To be honest it was such a good car that I really thought about getting another Hyundai, but could not pull a 30K trigger in a Hyundai.

That being said, I am very glad I gave GM a shot and love my car.
 

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If you're going new, I like the Fit as a daily driver. I'm actually thinking about getting one IF I get a Corvette. The four banger Fit plus the V8 Corvette will still keep our 6 cylinders per car average intact. ;)

Used, anything with a steep depreciation curve is ideal. Something that is a decent car but people hate (I'm thinking the Kias mentioned above would be good choices, or something like a Saturn L-series).
 

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How about a 1st gen ford focus hatch. I'm not sure how much are they now but its a good car.

or I also suggest (gasp!) a 92-95 Honda Civic hatchback. If you can find one that is not modified then you're golden. Fun little car thats great on gas. And if you want, you can modify it too, to you liking.
 

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IMO, if you fixed the Oldsmobile...repairing the intake with the "fixes" we previously talked about...you'd still be ahead...

Hitman also brings up a good alternative with the Saab 9-2x...maybe a certified used one could be found...that would have a warranty???
 

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Drop the Olds. That is the most grampa boring car. It's also not worth your time or money to fix at that price.

A used late 9-2x would be a good choice. A late model (1st gen face lift) Focus would also be a good choice. A Honda Accord or Civic would be winner. I'd stay away from Kia. They have no resale value and are really Hyundai's new bargain basement.

Do you want something that is fun, slow, fast, small, large???
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
thanks for your advice, all. I ended up buying the Kia,

I ran the numbers and it actually ended up being a wash with fixing the olds. Once I factor in gas, insurance, projected maintenance, it cost the same to keep the Olds as it did to buy the Kia. And the Kia has a warranty forever.

2008 Kia Spectra 5. Black, Manual, 6-CD Changer.

So, MSRP was 16,920. I paid 15,090. GAP insurance and Olds were a wash, and tax and tags at 0% APR for 5 years. $270/mo
with nothing out of my pocket except for the Olds. I am happy. I think I got a good deal, and it is a handy, zippy little car.

Thanks!
 

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thanks for your advice, all. I ended up buying the Kia,

I ran the numbers and it actually ended up being a wash with fixing the olds. Once I factor in gas, insurance, projected maintenance, it cost the same to keep the Olds as it did to buy the Kia. And the Kia has a warranty forever.

2008 Kia Spectra 5. Black, Manual, 6-CD Changer.

So, MSRP was 16,920. I paid 15,090. GAP insurance and Olds were a wash, and tax and tags at 0% APR for 5 years. $270/mo
with nothing out of my pocket except for the Olds. I am happy. I think I got a good deal, and it is a handy, zippy little car.

Thanks!
Congrats on your new ride. Do not blow off the timing belt change at 60,000 miles and you will be good to go for a long time.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
i am just glad that now I can go to the grocery store in something other then the Solstice. Ever tried to get dogfood into a Solstice? Yeah, i scratched my head and had to think about it too!
 
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