Looking for a new car



I have decided to sell my 97 Ford Thunderbird since I have a repair bill of about $2500. So now I am looking for an used car, somewhere below $7000 or so.

It needs to be:

a four seater;

able to tow about 2500 lbs.;

coupe is good, four door ok as well;

prefer a car for the gas mileage, but small SUV or truck is OK, too;

I would like a manual- but that may not work out if I want to be able to tow stuff;

diesel or gas, foreign or domestic OK.

I think that’s it. Any ideas?



A small truck is out if you want a four seater.

Small to mid-sizes cars are too light to tow the weight you want.

Some down-sized SUVs have towing capacities of about 2000lbs.

As you aren’t buying new, you might want to check the latest edition of Consumer Reports.

Here you can narrow the search quickly as they post the pros and cons of each vehicle in your price range.

Once you’ve narrowed the field, come back to this sites’ home page and click on the ‘Research’ link to find the specs on a specific auto or truck.


What kind of towing, ie. frequency, terrain, type of road and distance.


Check out a 2000/2001 Nissan Crew Cab. They are around $6000-$8000 and tow 3500#. My cousin has a newer one (2005) and she loves it.



Crown Victoria or Grand Marquis would fit the bill perfectly. You can get a fairly new one within your price range, and they can tow the weight you need.

Also, you might find a small truck with rear jump seats. I know some Mazda B-series trucks did come with two rear jump seats. One of those or a Ford Ranger would be ideal. Also, an earlier (2000, 2001) Hyundai Santa Fe would work, although I don’t know whether it will be within budget. Lastly, I’d suggest looking at some RWD vans, like a Ford Aerostar or a Chevy Astro/GMC Safari. You can certainly find some within your price range, and they can easily tow what you need. Not sure about what kind of mileage they get, but I imagine it’s not terrible, seeing as they come equipped with V6 engines.
Good luck.


OK, it’s a start. I know I will be moving probably several times over the next few years, plus anything else that comes to mind.
Thanks for the help, I’ll start looking in the next few weeks.


You didn’t say how many miles on the T-bird. Why not pay the $2,500 and continue driving it? $2,500 is less than $7,000.


Exactly what I was thinking.


I’ve been in the process of moving, so I’ve been unable to get back here.
Basically, the $2000 or so is a low estimate, plus there are other problems, and it was suggested to me by the mechanic that I should get another car. The condition is called the “Black Death” where the bearings inside the compressor go out and clog all the filters in the system, mandating replacing most if not all of the system; otherwise, any new parts will go out in about a week.
I am most concerned about the compressor seizing up and snapping the belt before I can sell it, making the car inoperable. Is there a way to seperate the wheel of the clutch where the belt goes so that if the compressor seizes the wheel keeps moving?