Here is my issue: My mom has two cars. a 1996 Acura RL with 120,000 miles on it , and 1997 Lexus es300 with 101,000 miles on it. Recently, she put in $5000 into the Acura b/c it was stalling sometimes. Since then, its been running well. She wants to give me one car. I want to leave her with the “better” car, that is, the one that will break down less, and last another 9 months to a year with less issues. Any ideas? Or is it a crapshoot at this point?
your question is kinda like asking which wife will give less problems, the first one, or the second? However, since there is not a huge difference in milage or age, I would let mom keep the one with the most recent work done, as it will have (with luck), fewer old parts to break. I would also take each car in to one of those places that does evaluations, to confirm this before I decided.
It’s a crapshoot.
It sounds like the Lexus has been the better vehicle, but that is no guarantee going forward.
I have a 1997 Ford and a 1998 Toyota. Each goes through spurts where it seems to need a couple of (usually VERY minor) minor repairs or waves of standard maintenance and then nothing for a few years afterwards.
Neither one has cost me anywhere near $5000 total over their entire lives on maintenance AND repairs combined.
Both of these cars are high reliability vehicles with excellent records of longevity. And both are similar in age and background. Let her give you the one she wants to give you and consider yourself truely blessed. If she absolutely insists that you make the choice, take the Acura, only because the Acura will have more of a “young person feel” and the Lexus is probably a bit more mild in its ride and feel.
The rliability is a tossup. But I think it’s fantastic that you want to leave her the better car.
Which ever one gets proper maintenance over its life.
We often see reports that list the number of problems with one car make to another. There is some value in that, but it is not nearly as important as the driver/owner who does or does not maintain the car properly.
A second factor that makes those studies of car problems is how the owners drive the cars. From one make and model to another the driver population is going to be different and from one study to another they are doing to be different.
For example, only reports of subscribers to Consumer Reports will be included in their studies. The only people included in a study of Lexus and going to be owner’s or leasers of Lexus. You you had owners of Ford Falcons rating Lexus, you likely would get a different result …
All of those studies have flaws. I don’t suggest you ignore them, but don’t put too much faith in them.
Take the Acura and leave her the Lexus. Since the ES300 is basically a Camry, it will easily deliver another 9 to 12 months of trouble-free driving, assuming it’s been properly maintained so far.
You’re really not asking much of either of these cars.
It has been shown that only one incidience of throttle sticking is enough to put the Lexus out of the running, what I am getting at is the private industry that keeps a record of customer complaints does not do a good enough job of indicating the severity of the complaint as in was it only cosmetic or was this a issue that may cause major damage, just listed as a customer complaint.
Take either car. If the one your mom has develops a problem, pay for the repair as if it were your car. If it happens again with the same car, then trade with her.
She spent $5,000 fixing a car that’s now worth $3,000? What did they do – rebuild the engine and transmission?
Thank you all for the useful information and insights. It’s greatly appreciated!