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Replace engine or buy new car?

I drove my car after the check engine light came on, stupidly without looking at the temperature gauge. When the car died, I had blown the head gasket, melted the sprak plugs and did some other pretty serious damage to the engine. So now I am contemplating replacing the engine instead of buying a new car since I drive very infrequently (I take transit to work and do a lot of business travel by air). The car is 10 years old and only has 72,000 miles on it. The body is in good shape as well. What is your opinion?

How much to replace the engine? Are you sure you need a car at all?

Don’t have the all the data in yet. $10,000+ for a new engine (plus a little more for a new raditor and hoses) - this is out of the question. I should find out tomorrow about the cost of a used engine. Unfortunately, I do need a car - I live in the suburbs and cannot completely rely on transit.

Check out for a low mileage used engine near you. SOME salvage yards will also install what they sell. Failing that, call some indy shops until you find one that will install the used engine for under $500. That’s plenty. They do exist. should also have a used radiator if that is what caused your initial overheating issue. (There are several other possibilities.) You can also get a new Taiwanese one at 1-800-RADIATOr.

Thanks so much for the info - I will definitely check it out!

Google “used Japanese engines” for more options…Also, there may be a Honda model that uses the same engine and that will broaden your choices and availability…

I’ve done both but you will never put enough miles on the car to pay for the extra expense of an engine in my humble opinion. If you were driving 30K a year or something, no problem but at less than 8K a year, go buy a new car and it will be under warranty for 5 years and you’ll have a valuable trade with only 40K on it. Put that kind of money in a 10 year old car and it will be worth nothing in five years, the same as now.

Thanks - appreciate the info.

The automatic transmission on your vehicle is a weakspot. I think your past Acura/Honda’s extended warranty so a $3500 looming repair is a possibility beyond the money you drop for an engine.

Good luck in your decision.

Agreed. The transmission was actually recalled several years after I got the car, and completely replaced for nothing. But that doesn’t mean that it isn’t still a weak spot! Thanks much for your opinion.