Is an 18-year old car a good buy?

Well, if somebody needs a car, they can’t wait for prices to (maybe) drop next year.

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To be fair, that was more of a charitable donation than a market sale, though. Scrap value not running, the car is worth more than $100. The cat converter underneath is worth more than that.

I’d say it might be an ok buy if it drives fine and the mechanic gives it the thumbs up. I almost wish it had a few thousand more miles on it. 35k in 18 years is so little. I’ve seen seals and gaskets start leaking on a vehicle that’s been sitting a long time and then put back into service. Maybe this one hasn’t been sitting for an extended period, but you’d tend to think it might have. I think I’d prefer this car over a similar one with 200k miles, but I might prefer a car with say 100k miles over this one….

I’d want to test drive it…a looong time lol. I figure if you can put 100 miles on it, everything works, and nothing starts leaking, you’ll probably be ok. Seller might not be keen on the extended test drive idea, though. If not, I’d probably pass.

As other posters have noted, car prices are at a high right now because of a temporary Chip supply shortage and a temporary cash availability coming out of the Covid lockdowns.
But the thing about “Temporary” is that it can quickly and drastically change.

Of course if you “Need” a vehicle right now you’ve got to pay whatever the market says but if you only “Want” a vehicle, I’d hold off buying any vehicle until “Temporary” kicks out and the prices and selection significantly improve.


the “temporary” price spike seem to affect the market disproportionally

we shopped for the new vehicle recently and it was not really hard to buy Honda at MSRP plus $100 or so, where 2 years back I bought one for around $1000 below MSRPor so, so I do not see that price changed “dramatically”

still, as we tried to find a good 1-2-3 years old used car, the prices seem to breath to the back of the comparable new cars, so we decided it was not worth it

now, on the “very old” side of the spectrum, I’m trying to sell a 15-years old Pathfinder, setting the price using KBB and Edmuds estimates (which seem to be over-inflated to me, but I’m not in rush to sell)… so, I see the regular “bargain hunters” public, who wants to offer low-ball-crazy and no logic that they have to look at condition and they need car which drives on its own and not in the tow truck bed just does not cut it… not what I’m surprised too much, as this is not my first private sell, but I was under impression I would get more interest and higher offers for the car in almost pristine mechanical condition…

Ya think? That’s why I said cars like that are usually given by relatives to relatives or sold for $500.

Your car had 350,000 miles on it, too many miles for anyone to be interested. Nobody is going to sell a car with low miles for $500.

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The car may be in good condition, but you have a very small percentage of the car buying public that would buy a vehicle that old, and most of them want a collectible or “special interest” vehicle. Good luck.

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Both of the cars I drive have reached the age that they are old enough to drive (16 yrs). I wouldn’t give them away or sell them for 50 bucks, but that’s just me. In today’s market, I bet I could manage to get ten grand combined if I sold them both. But, alas, I’d have to buy something else in the same crazy market!

since I’m not in rush to sell, it’s OK…

I have my bait in the water and I’m waiting… or I keep the car :slight_smile:

It seems Mr Time does not have the Time to post back. LOL