I’m about to buy a 2007 Mazda CX 7 tomorrow. I have two options and they are the same price: 1st (my favorite)has 58k miles, navigation system, rear camera and it’s a 4wd, 2nd has 18k miles, no technology package and it’s a 2wd, everything else is the same (but the color). What should I do???
This might depend to some extent on where you live in the US.
If you live in an area where snow and ice are not an issue, then the 2WD version with lower odometer miles is a clear-cut winner of this competition.
On the other hand, if your area does get nasty winter weather, there will be days when you will be glad that you have AWD.
For me, a major factor would be the maintenance records of these two vehicles.
A vehicle that accumulated only 18k miles in ~4 years could have already begun to experience an engine sludge problem if it has not had its oil changed at least 4 times already. Personally, I would have changed the oil on that vehicle at least 6 times so far, based on the elapsed time factor.
And, a vehicle with 58k on the odometer could also suffer from various mechanical problems in the future if it has not been maintained properly. People who buy cars without maintenance records are taking a very big chance with their own wallets!
Can you verify through documentation that these two vehicles have been maintained at least as well as Mazda specifies? Don’t take anyone’s word for it. Only accept documentary evidence of their maintenance.
I live in Indiana so I was looking for a 4wd at first. I’m getting it from Carmax and as far as I know there are no issues with the cars. Would they have those documents available? Here’s the link tho the first one:
“as far as I know there are no issues with the cars”
I’m really curious as to what might be the basis for that statement.
Did the salesman tell you that “there are no issues”?
Or, are you basing your statement on one of those semi-worthless Car Fax printouts?
Are you aware that car salespeople are not necessarily either knowledgeable about cars or honest with their customers?
Are you aware that Car Fax reports typically omit more information than they include?
I stand by my statement that people who buy cars without maintenance records are taking very big chances with their own wallet. And, even if the car(s) in question do come with full maintenance records, you still need to take a candidate for purchase to a mechanic of your own choosing for inspection–prior to purchase.
Do the fast-talkers at Carmax allow you to take a vehicle for inspection by your own mechanic?
If not, keep looking for a more customer-friendly auto merchant.
Personally I would opt for the simpler version with fewer miles.
2wd will get better gas mileage than 4wd, plus it requires less maintenance. Its components will be just more stuff to break in the future, as will the parts of the “technology package”.
Carfax is a good tool to use in evaluating a used car, but it’s not fool-proof, and many cars with clean Carfax reports turn out to be not so great.
Please be aware that car salespeople are trained to find your weak spot and exploit it. I know this because I used to be a car salesperson. You really have to be careful or you’ll spend too much money.
Based only on the information you provided, I’d take the vehicle with 18k miles and less electronic frills, which will be expensive if they fail. But that’s just me. I don’t want all that extra junk in my vehicle.
If you feel you need 4WD, then the choice is clear, but if you feel you need it, why are you considering a vehicle that doesn’t have it?
Have you looked at other CX7s, or are these the only two you’ve seen? And why do you have to buy tomorrow? Can you spend a little more time shopping around? It might save you some money.
In the end it comes down to this: buy the one you like.
Apparently they have a BUNCH of CX-7’s, and almost all of them are under $20K.
Don’t let the sales guy pressure you into buying tomorrow if you’re not positive this is the one you want. It’s not like there won’t be another one coming along shortly. If you’re absolutely desperate to get into one of these tomorrow, then you may be kinda screwed, but don’t take his word for anything.
I went through a Carmax dealership once, and even two years later, after I bought a brand new car from someone else, they were STILL calling me about “this great offer” they had on the lot. No amount of “leave me alone” would work. If I didn’t answer, I still had to wade through the voice-mails to get to the voice-mail I needed to hear.
I can see pictures of other SUV’s on the lot, so this isn’t the only one available.
If you have time, do some shopping around, and insist that any even possible sale must include a pre-purchase inspection by a mechanic YOU trust, not one of theirs.
Thanks! I’ve looked at a few CX 7s and the first one is my favorite. I just considered the second one for the low mileage. I need to pick one tomorrow for personal issues, Im selling my car and I cannot be without a car. If I end up buying it tomorrow I’ll definitely take it to a mechanic.
If you like the AWD car, buy it. BTW, taking it to your mechanic after buying it is a little late. You might ask for an extended test drive and go directly to your mechanic for a quick inspection. Expect to pay $100 to $200 for the service. BTW, AWD might be a good add-on if there are hills near you. But the only hills I’m familiar with in Indiana are the highway on-ramps. Still, if you like that particular CX-7, buy it. Not too much is likely to go wrong in the first 60,000 miles as long as the fluids were changed. Speaking of fluids, make sure your mechanic looks at the transmission fluid. If it just needs to be changed, it’s fine. But if he finds metal shavings in it, you might want that low mileage version.
I agree with JT. Don’t be anymore afraid of buying an awd car than you would any other.
First off, head over to http://www.mcx7.com and browse that forum. the 2007 model had teething issues, as it was the first model year of the vehicle. First off the gas cap had problems; a blue gas cap should be the correct fitting cap. Then there’s the AC compressor issue; ask if it’s been replaced yet. Then there was an issue with the VVT actuator coming loose/breaking, that meant a whole new engine(think Honda timing belt breaking).
Not to say either car will keel over when you drive it off the lot, but you might(and this will be one of the few times I’ll do this) look into a Mazda Care warranty that covers the AC and engine/tranny for a few more years.
The guys on the forum I mentioned can help you out more than I can. Though I’d take the one with the rear camera, my CX-7 has one and it’s been the best thing I wasn’t sure I wanted.
Also, if you call a Mazda dealership in the area and give them the VINs, they should be able to pull up any recalls/TSBs that have been/need to be done on the vehicles, and should be able top pull the maintenance records if it’s been taken to a dealership for maintenance.
edit: I actually own a 2010 model CX-7.
We have no idea of your requirements in a car - you have to make this choice yourself. Having said that however, you don’t have any mountains in Indiana, are you planning on going off-roading in a CX-7 ?
They aren’t meant to be taken offroad, they’re AWD, not 4wd, and even then, it’s not true AWD, it’s FWD with power being sent to the rear wheels. The 2wd version is FWD
Thanks for the tips! I ended up buying the 4wd. My mechanic checked it and everything was fine, but the oil filler cap, which they fixed for me. It is in perfect condition now and I got the extended warranty. I’m very happy with my decision and I love the car!
Most of us would not have purchased the extended warranty. You could have put the money in a bank account and drawn money fro it for repairs (not maintenance. Then you likely could have a great vacation with whatever is left over at the end of 3 years. Can you get your money back?