we were also wondering if there was a way to lease a car that would be more reliable in the long run and cheaper.or would owning a used car out right be the way to go…the jetta has 75,ooo miles and in good shape.the asking price is $2,800.
A 2000 Jetta is unlikely to be a paragon of reliability. It will also, in all likelihood, consume a quart of oil every 1,000 miles or so. Perhaps more depending on how it’s been taken care of.
In addition, the timing belt will need to be replaced very soon (it’s probably due now), which will cost $500-750. This is very important because if the timing belt breaks the engine will suffer expensive internal damage.
Keep these things in mind if you decide to make an offer. Good luck.
Can’t you find a nice Corolla or Prizm for that much money?
Leasing is the most expensive way to drive; you pay a lot of money every month and end up with nothing at the end of the lease. I have a business and can write off the leasing costs, but it is still cheaper for me to buy a car and keep it a long time.
Granted, owning a 2000 Jetta, even if it was GIVEN to you would need a $2000+ per year budget for upkeep, and would make leasing look more attractive…
If you are thinking of saving money don’t even loook at a European car!!!
If $2,800 represents your savings for say, the last five years, then you should not buy this car. It will cost you more for future repairs than you can afford. It will have problems that will need to addressed in the next 50,000 miles, including the already mentioned preventative timing belt change. This is an expensive car to repair.
That said, I would not worry too much about the oil loss; although it requires diligence on the part of the user, these cars just burn oil. It’s not harmful to the engine unless you don’t add oil regularly.
The bottom line is buying a used car saves a car payment every month as well as the very expensive warranty-tied scheduled maintenance and uncovered repairs, etc. associated with either buying or leasing a new car. I completely agree that a lease is a bad deal versus buying new. If you lease a car, there are generally unreasonable mileage limits and the car must be meticuously mantained both mechanically and in appearance. Otherwise the end of the lease will cost you a lot of money.
If you buy a used car, you should try to assess how long you need it to last and how much money you will likely need to put into it over that time. If you believe you will be able to buy another similar car in two years without it being a financial burden, and you have a reserve fund to take care of major problems in the interim, it is worth taking a chance on a good used car. You would need to see what you are getting into for likely repairs for your particular model.
If your credit is good, however, probably your absolute best plan would be to get into either a new car (at the lowest possible interest rate) and buy a Toyota new, or buy a used pre-certified car with a CarFax report. If you can get into a Corrolla at around $160 a month with $1,000 down (not sure if you can, but check it out), then your 11 months of payments are already funded by the remainder of the $2,800 you want to spend on a much older car. If you can and do go this route, don’t get sucked into the whole warranty scam. I would do the first few maintenance cycles with the dealer and then follow the oil change schedule and other fluid changes as well as scheduled maintenance by way of the least cost possible.
Lastly, I buy used cars because I can generally diagnose and repair them myself, and I enjoy doing the work. I can also promise you that I have never had a car that even comes close to being as reliable, long lived and easy to repair as a Toyota Corrolla. If your credit is poor, see if can buy one for the money you have to spend. It is, trust me, the perfect poor person’s car. My current one is a 1987 Corrolla FX-16. My last one was an 84 that lasted me 374,000. Mostly I just changed the oil and brake pads.