The myth of maintenance free Japanese cars (...that go to 200k with just gas, tires, and oil)


Being ten years old and having 200K miles on it, my “over rated Japanese turd” has been very good to me. No significant repairs other than new tires and oil changes. I wore out a couple of batteries and burned out a couple of headlight bulbs, that’s about it.


But he’s not entitled to his own facts, and factually, he’s full of beans.


If Japanese cars are overrated overpriced turds, I’m proud to be driving one of those turds, a 1998 Civic with 304,000 miles on the odometer.

No Ford, GM, or Chrysler has ever offered me this kind of longevity or high mileage reliability. I just took a 200 mile trip in it today.


beans, facts and opinions tend to get mixed up :smirk:


Yet if your Nick name is to be believed, you WILL own an overrated, overpriced Euro-turd.
I don’t think you actually love driving either. If you did you be getting a car that will actually be getting road time instead of shop time. My brother who does enjoy the overrated overpriced euro-turds has come to realize the truth about BWM’s. Never buy a used one, and don’t keep a new one past the warranty.


@cdaquila This thread may qualify for closing .


I’ve owned 5 of those turds from day one til I sold them with well over 300k miles. Last I knew my 98 Pathfinder was approaching 500k miles and still going on original engine and tranny. My Wife’s 96 Accord was the most reliable we’ve ever owned. First repair (not counting preventative maintenance) was at about 240k miles. And it was just a heater control knob which cost me $4. We gave it to our niece with over 300k miles when she started college. She sold it after she graduated with over 400k miles and bought a Honda Civic. With the exception of the “turds” we currently own all of them lasted well past 300k miles with minimal maintenance. Wife’s Lexus has over 200k miles and my Highlander now has over 100k miles. Expect to reach 300k without a hiccup.


Yeah, beans you guys have been feeding this troll.


How old is this thing? Six years? Yeah I’ve had 3-4 Acuras and they are fine. I’ve also had a bunch of GM Olds and Buicks and they were fine. Cutlass 240K, Riviera 350K, Riviera 2 530K, Olds 205K, Park Ave. 120K, etc. It’s all in how you drive and care for them. IMHO. I do like long warranties though with Acura’s 50K and the Park was 50K. Of course they all have 70K drive train warranties.


Hard for me to imagine a car with 500k miles on the stock motor and trans. Did it still have decent power? You’d think you’d lose some compression at some point.

If I’m 100% honest, I think I’d lose interest and want something else at 250k miles or less anyway.


I knew a guy with 500k on his CRX HF. Original motor and tranny. He finally abandoned it because of rust. Still ran fine when he drove it to the scrapyard. He took very good care of it, but didn’t do anything heroic to keep it running.


My 2004 Mazda6 (V6) made it to 226,000 miles. Was kinda hoping it’d hit the quarter-million mile mark, but facing a third major repair bill in one year was the deciding factor in choosing to get rid of it.


My 98 Pathfinder did. Great vehicle. Started smoking a little oil after 450k miles. That 3.3L Nissan V6 is an extremely reliable engine.


Not hard at all if you are on the road all the time. My Riviera was a great road car. Comfortable and reasonably economical. Due to a lot of rust proofing, the only rust was the gas cap cover and I replaced that. The only engine work was a timing chain and cover. At 530K it used no oil and had plenty of power. Because I was driving all over the large state of Minnesota, I had the transmission overhauled at 300,000 before winter. The guys said it didn’t look that bad. I got rid of it because it would stall on me and no one could find the problem.


In my definition, the car made it to when you had the timing chain replaced or the trans overhaul. Whichever came first. 500k miles is super impressive, don’t get me wrong. There’s kinda, sorta a caveat though, in my opinion, if you overhauled the trans or replaced a timing chain pre 500k miles. Just my thoughts, not trying to discount your half a million miles.

Heck, I don’t think I’ve even driven 500k miles in my lifetime if I assume 15k miles per year from age 16 until the present. I hope you got paid mileage! Ha!


So an Asian car with a timing belt that needs to be replaced at 90K for a cost of $800 is considered maintenance but a timing chain replaced at 350K is considered a repair? I dunno, I think your definitions need a little work. I’m just saying, I don’t think engines and transmissions are the big deal they used to be. Most are expected now to go several hundred thousand without major work.


Did I say that exactly? Don’t believe I did.

Timing belts as a routine maintenance item vs timing chains that are supposed to last forever somewhat cloud the waters.

Let’s go with this: how long did it last before repairs were needed (or undergone) in excess of the power train warranty?

In other words, don’t count it if the power train warranty would have covered it. Hell, that might cloud the issue further!

I read your engines and transmissions aren’t as a big of a deal as they used to be comment earlier. No offense, but what else would you base reliability on? Seriously, no offense. Don’t hurt me.


BTW, bing, I’m open to other definitions of reliability. And I’m not rooting for foreign vs domestic. Actually, I kinda hope domestic wins. Cause I’m domestic. But there has to be a level playing field. And I agree, timing belts vs chains muddies the waters. I don’t plan to own a timing belt equipped vehicle myself. Timing belts are a reliability con! :laughing:

(I think they kinda are).


No offense but I just looked at overall total costs but honestly that was ten years ago and I don’t remember. Yeah I did get mileage. It was a profit center and paid college expenses to the kid. I really haven’t had a car not under warranty though for a long time. I’m not sure I get real excited about normal repair events but the thing that gets me for reliability is when the car leaves you stranded. I don’t mind fixing but I do mind walking in the cold. So really I have no current information of use and anything ten years ago, I’d have to go dig the files out. Just to clarify though, when I overhauled the transmission in the Riviera, it was a preemptive repair to avoid a problem, not because of a problem.


Well, I mean, my house should last my lifetime, but I’m not gonna tear it down and build a new one when the microwave goes out…

If a timing chain needs to be replaced, just replace it. Why would you scrap the whole car if everything else is perfectly good?