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2017 Nissan Altima - good deal?

I’m about to buy a used 2017 Nissan Altima 2.5SV for $12,000. It has 36,018 miles, no accident and it use to be a rental vehicle. I don’t know much about Nissan and i was wondering if this is a good deal. Thank you in advance

It is a used vehicle so who knows if it is a good deal . If it is the price you are asking about Kelley Blue Book can give you an idea.

For my particular zip code, it comes up as a pretty good price as per . . . a little lower than average, in fact

If you’re buying from somebody like Hertz or Enterprise, I’d say you have little to worry about, as long as you’re comfortable with the price

You might want to consider asking them if they’d allow you to get it inspected by a mechanic of your choice, preferably somebody who has absolutely no kind of business relationship with the seller

I advise against any kind of aftermarket . . . non-Nissan in this case . . . extended warranties. They’re often not worth the paper they’re printed on, and the exclusions are usually so large, you could drive a Freightliner through them

“no accident” . . . be aware that if you’re relying on carfax to make that statement, they only know what is reported to them, and their information is sometimes incomplete or flat out wrong

Lots of people buy ex-rentals from Enterprise and Hertz, and I doubt they would knowingly sell you a turkey while keeping silent about it. They would probably just send it to an auction


Seems like a pretty good deal to me. Does it have the 4 banger or the 6 banger engine? There’s been a recall on the 4-banger anyway, involving some reprogramming, so make sure that’s all been done. The recommendation here is to always have your own shop inspect a potential used car purchase before writing any checks.

Does it have the CVT? That part has been a little problematic in earlier-model Nissans. You might want to do a little googling to see if those problems have all been resolved by the 2017 model.

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That is what my brother thought when he bought a Ford Fairmont from Enterprise, circa 1980.
What a disaster that car was!

12k for a 17’ altima seems like a good price. do you want an altima? vs a different car. like an accord? or camry? you might like the altima just fine. and the cvt trans will work as well as the accord cvt trans. and all 3 will be worth the same in 3yrs. right?
I think Honda powertrain warranty is 60k?
What is Altima warranty?

That was almost forty years ago. What does that have to do with today’s Ford? Didn’t Toyota have a deserved bad reputation at that time?

I have to ask, not knowing much about Nissans and not knowing whether it’s a good deal or not, why are you considering this purchase? Please explain the hurry. It could impact the advice you are getting.

Are you purchasing from a car dealer, individual, directly from the rental entity, or other?

I’ve purchased several former rental cars and have always been happy and never suffered any buyer’s remorse, although none had that many miles on them.

The Enterprise sales lots around here are brimming with a wide variety of nice former rental cars for sale. If you’re not sure what a good deal looks like then I think it would behoove you shop and kick tires and read window stickers a bit before jumping into a purchase.

Another thing… you could possibly rent a make/model, similar to one that you’re considering, for a day or two, and see if it meets your needs and expectations.

As others have pointed out, warranty coverage is what I’d be looking at, too. The balance of the original manufacturer’s warranty coverage will usually transfer with your purchase, both bumper-to-bumper coverage, and drivetrain coverages. Compare these warranties carefully.

I like to find low miles former rentals and enjoy less wear and tear and a longer warranty. Warranty goes by miles and time. Note that warranty time coverage ordinarily begins with the car’s in-service date which is usually shortly after the date of manufacture. You can find a tag on cars (usually on the driver’s door opening or end of door).

A 2017 car, for instance, could have a date of manufacture of anywhere from about 08/16 to 07/17. In addition to fewer miles I look for a good “freshness date.” Usually a car nearly a year fresher and often with fewer miles than another is not significantly more costly.

Immerse yourself in cars and do some homework online. Educate yourself as you comparison shop. It’s 12,000 bucks! Then when you go from new car fever and become a buyer you’ll not come down with a case of buyer’s remorse. There are lots and lots of cars out there, literally!

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You missed my point, which was that assuming that one will get a decently maintained car from a rental agency, is not necessarily a valid idea. My comment had nothing to do with Ford–either then or now.

You also have to consider it was a Ford Fairmont :smirk:

My reasons are, i drive a 1999 ford mustang right now but it a rearwheel drive, which sucks in the winter because it can barely handle a few inches of snow.So I’m looking for something better (FWD or AWD) and I’m willing to spend some money but before i do i want some advice about it.

Also what do you think about a 2008 Lexus IS 250 4dr Sport Sdn AWD for $9,995 with 55,159 miles. No accident but damage report to the front and rear. Any advice is helpful and thank you

Someone on the web can’t see , hear or drive either one of these vehicles. So the standard reply is have a mechanic look at what ever you want to increase your chance of getting a decent vehicle.

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No . . . among all the Toyota products, this is not one of the better ones, in my opinion


The only downside to that Altima is its CVT transmission. Nissan has sorted out most of the wrinkles but even then when it breaks, it is going to cost more than a regular transmission to rebuilt. A Camry might be a better choice but you will pay more upfront.
As cars have gotten more reliable, rental companies are hanging on to them longer. I was looking on the Hertz site and they had two RAV 4’s with over 80K miles on them.
Hertz has a rent to own deal, I think it is $150 for 3 days to see if you like the car. You can also have it checked out by your mechanic.

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You are definitely on the right path. FWD is all you need for snow in most cases. Comparing FWD to RWD on snow covered roads, I expect your first comment will be Viva l’difference!! I lived in a Colorado ski resort town w/a FWD VW Rabbit, never had any problems at all getting around on snow packed roads. I’d have to switch my truck to 4WD sometimes to match the performance of the Rabbit on winter roads. The 2017 Altima is a much better choice than the 2008 Lexus imo. Have all those new parts is a big advantage. Nissan’s tend to be not quite as reliable as Toyotas, Hondas, and Mazdas from the reports there, but that’s just quibbling. The only issue about the Altima I’d even slightly worry about is the robustness of the CVT.

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Support the worry about CVT.

My sample of 3 CVT-equipped Nissans resulted in 2 bad results:

2013 Sentra: my wife’s car, CVT failed completely at 42K miles, replaced under 60K warranty, sold right after that

2012 Altima: my car, detected CVT slippage at 89K miles, sold it

2007 Altima: my daughter’s car, still holds well at 102K miles, she plans on replacing it within next year max

all of these vehicles received CVT fluid replacement on 30K intervals, so it was “above and beyond” on maintenance as Nissan claims fluid does not need changes, although still recommends replacing it every 30K under “premium maintenance” how they call it

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I bought a low mileage Dodge Caravan from Enterprise, very happy with it. They have a 1 week return policy, you pay 200 if you do that. I left it with my mechanic the day after I bought it, and he gave it a solid thumbs up. I had a basic warranty from Enterprise for a year and still have my factory warranty. See if you have a buy pack period or can just take it to your mechanic for a check out. Best you will spend.

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… yes, there was also… that.
However, the car had not been properly maintained and unfortunately my brother only took it to a mechanic after purchase. That was a big mistake from which he learned a whole lot.

One detail that I recall is that the some of the vacuum lines under the hood were messed up. I discovered that one of them was detached, and before I could reattach it, I had to dig a piece of wood (that had been used to plug it, for some reason) out of the line.

Have you considered keeping your Mustang and adding a set of four winter tires? FWD and AWD are better for accelerating in snow, but a carefully driven RWD car with four winter tires will do just as well in the snow under most circumstances. And the solution is considerably cheaper than adding another car to your maintenance schedule and insurance.

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i finally replaced my rear driveshaft a few weeks ago and got to use the AWD today. we live on a hill and got 5" of snow and no plow this morning. the awd system is rather clunky on my equinox. it is fwd in most operation but sends power to rear when it slips. a friend has an awd infiniti g37 but that is rwd mostly and better sorted. he says it goes thru snow very well. and he has blizzaks too.