The eternal : To buy or not to buy


I currently drive a 99 Toyota corolla (52 k) on it running fine. (No repairs, except the handle on the driver side broke,and apparently that is one major complaint on these cars). I love this car and it has served me well. And at 52k miles it can serve me better.

An acquaintence is selling Acura 2006 TSX (33600 miles) on sale for 19.5 k. Definitely above KBB, I know the car is in good condition. Should I even consider it ? talk me out of it…

I have been losing sleep on whether i am passing up a golden opportunity to upgrade.

A little more than 17 grand I can probably buy a new Civic/Corolla , heck get a good deal on any toyotas/hondas. But the 17 grand question is : will it be an Acura ?

Also, what about the maintanence? I do realise that the fuel and insurance cost and general rise in expenditure…

ugh…wrong forum, meant to post in general discussion. sorry. But experts here can offer me insight.

First, I would never buy a car from a friend. You run the chance of the car ruining the relationship if something goes wrong.

Second, if there is nothing wrong with your Corolla, and it has so few miles on it, I don’t know why you would want to get rid of it. The kind of money you would spend to get a car with 18,400 fewer miles on it doesn’t seem worth it to me. $19,500 seems like a lot of money to spend when you don’t need a new car.

If it is loaded with Navigation system etc. $17K is ballpark price from a private seller. It is over priced, you’ll likely need new tires soon and a brake job.

Should be a good dependable car but don’t overpay to get it.

No navigation. The car has standard package. Seller is asking for 19.5 K, I am hoping to talk themdown to 17 k. I guess everybody (including me) think their car is the best and worth more than KBB (KBB value is 16.6 K for a good condition car).

I didnt think about the tires, Thanks ! Would that be another 600- 800 $ job in these cars?

The price they are asking is probably the payoff amount of their loan, ask them to be sure.
I don’t know if the TSX is belt or chain, but timing belt should be coming up in a year or two on this car(and your Corolla is probably 6 years overdue too).
Call your insurance company and find out how much more insurance would go up if you bought it. Better safety equipment compared to your Corolla, will probably be a bit quieter too.
Only you can ultimately decide if you should buy another vehicle;
Are you tired of looking at the Corolla?
Have you moved recently and your needs have changed?
can you afford it?
are you uncertain about the longevity of those 11 year old parts that might need replacing soon, or just the car in general?

perfect set of questions…you should be a car psychic. Excellent point on the loan - I will check with them.

I am not tired of my corolla…but a newer car is “more” safer. My needs are pretty much the same and I can definitely afford it.

I did replace my timing chain in corolla. Great point again on the Timing belt in TSX.

Like you so aptly put it - I am beginnning to think about the longevity of those 11 year old parts.
So, probably acura or not, may be time for a new car.

No timing belt on Acura TSX.

If you like to drive and experience it TSX an incredible car. The Corolla new or old is the anti-thesis of sporting driving/experience.

Don’t overpay, use KBB. She’ll never get that kind of money for the car. We all can dream.

The TSX is worth about $15,200. I use Edmunds to price cars, and have found them to be fairly accurate. Just pass on it. You don’t want to insult your friend by offering a fair price for the car. Let a stranger shock your friend with a reasonable offer. I won’t encourage you by answering the question about tires. You don’t need to know, since you shouldn’t buy the car.

Thanks a ton guys. Usually, forums give answers to questions. This is a great forum because you tell what the person “should” hear not wants to hear.

lol @ “Don’t overpay, use KBB. She’ll never get that kind of money for the car. We all can dream.” So true.

I think I am out of the stupor :slight_smile:

Not really psychic(I knew you were gonna say that :stuck_out_tongue: ), just realistic. Most people here will tell you to keep your car until it costs more per year to maintain/repair it than it would cost to cover a loan payment. But, needs change, or we might not want to look at the old one anymore, or we just don’t know if it’ll start in the morning despite having enough things replaced on it that it’s essentially a brand new car underneath

Just an update. Car got sold for ~16.5 k. A news of Acura TSX 2004-2008 Recall is out. I am glad I didnt dive in.

Forget it. The owner wants way too much for it. If you make a realistic off, the owner will get mad, and you may lose a friend for just being honest. No one will buy it until it the price drops about $4000. Edmunds says that this car with an auto transmission is worth about $15,300 in clean condition from a private party. You could pay $2000 more than you should, but that would still be $2000 less than your friend wants; he’ll still be unhappy. If you really want the car, just be patient and let everyone else tell him his price is outrageous. Eventually it will get low enough that you should consider buying it. Unless you just want a new car, I’d keep the Corolla.