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Time To Try A Japanese Car?  
User currently offlineRonglimeng From Canada, joined Oct 2006, 626 posts, RR: 0
Posted (6 years 10 months 2 weeks 5 days 12 hours ago) and read 2038 times:

Even though it only has 167,000 km on it, my '99 Chev Lumina is on its last legs. The gas tank leaks and I think the head gasket leaks too, so we're looking at getting a new car. I've always bought North American cars. I've had a prejudice against "rice burners" -- well, up until now anyway. I've sort of believed in that slogan "Buy the cars your neighbours build". But lately they seem to be building Hondas!

Any comments? I don't really like cars. I just use them to get around. What would be a good cheap 2-door Japanese-designed car?

22 replies: All unread, jump to last
 
User currently offlineVonRichtofen From Canada, joined Nov 2000, 4639 posts, RR: 36
Reply 1, posted (6 years 10 months 2 weeks 5 days 12 hours ago) and read 2024 times:

Well, the Japanese cars are reliable (though there have been some issues lately with Toyota I think). But they're so mind numbingly boring. But as you say you just need a rig to get from A to B. If that's the case then I'd say a Civic is your best bet. Reliable, efficient and still stylish and probably the best of the Japanese economy cars.

Toyota are good, but I just can't fathom driving one myself. Might as well take up knitting as well.



Word
User currently offlineNIKV69 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 2, posted (6 years 10 months 2 weeks 5 days 12 hours ago) and read 2013 times:



Quoting Ronglimeng (Thread starter):
Even though it only has 167,000 km on it, my '99 Chev Lumina is on its last legs

That has to be a record!

Quoting Ronglimeng (Thread starter):
Any comments? I don't really like cars. I just use them to get around. What would be a good cheap 2-door Japanese-designed car?

Well Toyota or Nissan would suffice. I am going on 4 years with my Nissan and I would never go back.


User currently offlineYooYoo From Canada, joined Nov 2003, 6057 posts, RR: 50
Reply 3, posted (6 years 10 months 2 weeks 5 days 12 hours ago) and read 2000 times:

167000 kms out of a car sounds pretty good if you didn't have to do too much work($) to get it there.

I currently drive a 98 Firefly to and from work and is very reliable. On the other hand i also have a 2004 Chev. Malibu Maxx which is now referred to in my home as the Malipoo or Malicrap. Because of the headaches caused by the Malibu falling apart including the service while being repaired, i will be seriously looking at either a Toyota, Nissan or Honda this Fall when my lease is up. Even the stability of the Firefly can't get me to think otherwise.
In the past i have had a Honda, VW and Nissan with ZERO problems...i'm not going to mention my Chrysler  banghead 

Quoting Ronglimeng (Thread starter):
I've sort of believed in that slogan "Buy the cars your neighbours build".

I don't follow this rule.  smile 

Honda Civic is a quality machine.



I am so smart, i am so smart... S-M-R-T... i mean S-M-A-R-T
User currently offlineNorthStarDC4M From Canada, joined Apr 2000, 3077 posts, RR: 36
Reply 4, posted (6 years 10 months 2 weeks 5 days 12 hours ago) and read 1989 times:
AIRLINERS.NET CREW
CHAT OPERATOR

Well my last 2 cars have been Japanese, 94 Toyota Camry (probably not built in Japan) and 07 Mazda 3 Sport (and the Mazda 3 WAS built in Japan, the VIN says so).

The Camry lasted 11 years, no real problems except for a problem with the starter in it's 9th year. And even then it was worth $5500CAD as a trade-in... not bad  Smile

The Mazda 3 is a 2007 model. Comfy, zippy, looks decent, VERY loaded (AC, Heated seats, CD, power everything, sport-tronic shifting...) , and didn't break the bank to get, though it did cost more than the US equivalent, but base models priced almost identical.

Now my parents are on their 2nd Malibu, had problems with the 1st (2004), and most of the people i work with that have "domestics" either have big problems with them or no problems at all. There doesn't seem to be a middle ground. If you want something in the size of the Lumina, probably looking at the Mazda 6, Hyundai Sonata or similar. I test drove a Sonata when i got my 3, they were having a special offer where the lease was almost the same as the smaller Accent. Besides the fact it wasn't really what i was looking for it is a very nice car.

So i say at least test drive them, see what you've been missing. They really don't feel the same as domestics but if you'll like it better or worse is a question you'll have to answer yourself. The difference i notice most between them is "domestics" tend to require more movement of the wheel or pedal before responding, some people like that, some don't.

And IMHO most of the "domestic" cars these days look like bricks with wheels. The front ends are just to squarish. But again, it's all subjective opinion.



Those who would give up Essential Liberty to purchase a little Temporary Safety, deserve neither Liberty nor Safety.
User currently offlinePanAm330 From United States of America, joined Mar 2004, 2693 posts, RR: 9
Reply 5, posted (6 years 10 months 2 weeks 5 days 9 hours ago) and read 1940 times:



Quoting NIKV69 (Reply 2):
Well Toyota or Nissan would suffice. I am going on 4 years with my Nissan and I would never go back.

 checkmark  Same here. I had an 02 Jeep Liberty (not my choice, but beggars can't be choosers), and I couldn't dump it fast enough. It was in the shop at least once a month for crap that shouldn't break on a five year old car. I got an 07 Nissan Sentra last June, and haven't looked back since. Never will, either. I do, however, wish I had gotten the larger Altima, but my car was cheaper and has much more equipment.


User currently offlineMD11Engineer From Germany, joined Oct 2003, 14144 posts, RR: 62
Reply 6, posted (6 years 10 months 2 weeks 5 days 9 hours ago) and read 1933 times:



Quoting YooYoo (Reply 3):
167000 kms out of a car sounds pretty good if you didn't have to do too much work($) to get it there

Excuse me, my old Suzuki Samurai has about 300.000km on the clock and only then started to give trouble (suspect a bearing in the intermediate gearbox giving up it's ghost).

My Land Rover has a 270.000 km on the clock and gets an overhaul right now. I just bought a 20 ton press off eBay and as soon as the weather turns better, I will replace all the rubber bushings in the suspension, throw in a set of new shock absorbers, a second hand replacement for one badly corroded door, a new camping roof (lifts up to give headroom and has space for a double bed). Maybe I'll overhaul the rear differential as well. 167.000 km is definitely not much for a car.

Jan


User currently offlineABQ747 From United States of America, joined Dec 2006, 855 posts, RR: 1
Reply 7, posted (6 years 10 months 2 weeks 5 days 9 hours ago) and read 1919 times:



Quoting MD11Engineer (Reply 6):
Excuse me, my old Suzuki Samurai has about 300.000km on the clock and only then started to give trouble (suspect a bearing in the intermediate gearbox giving up it's ghost).

That's nothing. This Ford van has over 1 million miles on it.
http://www.toledoblade.com/apps/pbcs...AID=/20080128/BUSINESS02/801280339



The reason New Mexico is so windy is because Texas sucks and Arizona blows.
User currently offlineAloges From Germany, joined Jan 2006, 8775 posts, RR: 42
Reply 8, posted (6 years 10 months 2 weeks 5 days 9 hours ago) and read 1905 times:



Quoting MD11Engineer (Reply 6):
My Land Rover (...) gets an overhaul right now. (...) I will replace (...) throw in a set (...) replacement (...) a new camping roof (...) Maybe I'll overhaul...

For some strange reason, I can't help thinking you've got exactly the job you should have.  bigthumbsup 



Walk together, talk together all ye peoples of the earth. Then, and only then, shall ye have peace.
User currently offlineWildcatYXU From Canada, joined May 2006, 2661 posts, RR: 5
Reply 9, posted (6 years 10 months 2 weeks 5 days 9 hours ago) and read 1894 times:

I drive American right now, but it seems to me like US automakers don't want me as a customer anymore. Reason: They have basically nothing to offer to me. The car that I like the most is a midsize sedan. I prefer manual transmission at the same time. Now put these two together: american midsize sedan and M/T. Good luck.

Quoting VonRichtofen (Reply 1):
If that's the case then I'd say a Civic is your best bet.

Yeah...especially with a big wing and blue neons  silly 


User currently offlineDfwRevolution From United States of America, joined Jan 2010, 1001 posts, RR: 51
Reply 10, posted (6 years 10 months 2 weeks 5 days 8 hours ago) and read 1867 times:



Quoting WildcatYXU (Reply 9):
I drive American right now, but it seems to me like US automakers don't want me as a customer anymore. Reason: They have basically nothing to offer to me. The car that I like the most is a midsize sedan. I prefer manual transmission at the same time. Now put these two together: american midsize sedan and M/T. Good luck.

I'm an Accord driver with basically the same preferences. My '03 model is a manual. At the time I made the purchase, the Accord, Camry, and Passat were the clear class leaders and it was really subjective as to which of those three was "best." The American models back in '03 didn't deserve a glance.

But I would say they have come a long, long way. The Ford Fusion is probably what I would be driving today if I had my druthers. Midsized sedan, manual option, AWD option, four cylinder fuel economy, nice exterior lines.


User currently offlineHickoryShampoo From Djibouti, joined Dec 2007, 144 posts, RR: 0
Reply 11, posted (6 years 10 months 2 weeks 5 days 8 hours ago) and read 1858 times:



Quoting Ronglimeng (Thread starter):
Even though it only has 167,000 km on it, my '99 Chev Lumina



Quoting NIKV69 (Reply 2):
That has to be a record!

Yeah, but how many of those mi....erm....km's were on the back of a wrecker?  Big grin

After 15 years of domestic vehicles, my short list is topped by the 4Runner and Highlander (Hybrid). My dad's Avalon and my wife's ES330 have been remarkably hassle-free. The 4Runner owners to whom I've consulted have all sung it's praises.



This place is cashed, so I'm out. Someone PM me when A.net comes back.
User currently offlineAirTranTUS From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 12, posted (6 years 10 months 2 weeks 5 days 7 hours ago) and read 1850 times:



Quoting Ronglimeng (Thread starter):
What would be a good cheap 2-door Japanese-designed car?

I can't think of anything better than a Civic. You cannot possibly go wrong with one.


User currently offlineNWA742 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 13, posted (6 years 10 months 2 weeks 5 days 7 hours ago) and read 1839 times:

My first piece of advice - don't buy ANY vehicle based simply on where it comes from. Do your research, find any vehicle that potentially interests you, doesn't matter if it's American, Japanese, or European. Compare reviews, prices, value, long-term reliability, efficiency, or anything else that matters to YOU. Don't rule out American vehicles because you have had a bad experience before, that just makes you a part of the typical ignorant consumer.

Quoting Ronglimeng (Thread starter):
What would be a good cheap 2-door Japanese-designed car?

The Civic is great, but it's not exactly cheap.




-NWA742


User currently offlineLOT767-300ER From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 14, posted (6 years 10 months 2 weeks 5 days 7 hours ago) and read 1820 times:

Let whoever is the most bland win.

The only car that you describe that I would buy is a Mazda 3.


User currently offlineAcey From Canada, joined Jun 2007, 1051 posts, RR: 0
Reply 15, posted (6 years 10 months 2 weeks 5 days 5 hours ago) and read 1779 times:

Nearing 200,000 km (about 125,000 miles) my 2001 Cavalier coupe is still running fine. Yeah, a Cavalier... but still running fine.

Quoting DfwRevolution (Reply 10):
Accord

The new Accord is great, I've been on board several times. Surely my favourite Honda.

Quoting WildcatYXU (Reply 9):
Yeah...especially with a big wing and blue neons

Civics are good little cars, but they're the most well known for being horribly riced out. Shame, really.

Quoting NWA742 (Reply 13):
don't buy ANY vehicle based simply on where it comes from

 checkmark  You're only going to cheat yourself if, before you even think of buying anything, you think, "I'm only buying a car from blah blah blah." Keep your options open.



If a man hasn't discovered something that he will die for, he isn't fit to live. -- Martin Luther King, Jr.
User currently offlineYooYoo From Canada, joined Nov 2003, 6057 posts, RR: 50
Reply 16, posted (6 years 10 months 2 weeks 5 days 4 hours ago) and read 1770 times:



Quoting MD11Engineer (Reply 6):
167.000 km is definitely not much for a car.

And your vehicles have got a lot of road...good for you!!

My point is that his car has had limited work done to it at 167000 km and that's not bad. A leaky gas tank and a "possible" head gasket for a 99 Lumina is good.

There are plenty of vehicles out there with way more mileage.

I'd never compare a Lumina to a Land Rover or a Samurai ...maybe a Pinto  Wink

I should have said your car in lieu of a car...sorry

Quoting YooYoo (Reply 3):
167000 kms out of a car sounds pretty good if you didn't have to do too much work($) to get it there.




I am so smart, i am so smart... S-M-R-T... i mean S-M-A-R-T
User currently offlineNIKV69 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 17, posted (6 years 10 months 2 weeks 5 days 4 hours ago) and read 1760 times:



Quoting NorthStarDC4M (Reply 4):
The Camry lasted 11 years, no real problems except for a problem with the starter in it's 9th year. And even then it was worth $5500CAD as a trade-in... not bad

Oh yea next to Honda, Totyota holds their value well.

Quoting PanAm330 (Reply 5):
I got an 07 Nissan Sentra last June, and haven't looked back since. Never will, either. I do, however, wish I had gotten the larger Altima, but my car was cheaper and has much more equipment.

Yep, maintain that thing properly and it will run forever. Good luck with it!  bigthumbsup 

Quoting MD11Engineer (Reply 6):
Excuse me, my old Suzuki Samurai has about 300.000km on the clock and only then started to give trouble (suspect a bearing in the intermediate gearbox giving up it's ghost).

Suzuki Samurais are great until you try to change lanes over 35mph.  duck 

Quoting AirTranTUS (Reply 12):
I can't think of anything better than a Civic. You cannot possibly go wrong with one

Yep, pound for pound, dollar for dollar this model is best. If you can fit in it!


User currently offlineCaptOveur From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 18, posted (6 years 10 months 2 weeks 4 days 23 hours ago) and read 1723 times:



Quoting Ronglimeng (Thread starter):
my '99 Chev Lumina is on its last legs.

You could have probably said the same thing the day you drove it off the dealer lot. My mom had a 96 lumina and it was a garage queen from day 1. She drives a V6 Accord now and loves it.

Quoting Ronglimeng (Thread starter):
But lately they seem to be building Hondas!

Yep.. And Honda is proof quality can still come out of the US. The GM and Fans will now claim GM and Ford still build great cars. Which they might have started doing, but I don't plan on finding out. I have been burned far too many times.

I drive a 1990 Accord. The thing looks like shit, but it still runs like new. the MX costs yearly are well under a thousand dollars which I consider pretty good for a car old enough to vote. The fuel mileage is amazing, around 30-35mpg, and the interior is still in decent shape. The way this car runs was a big help to the Acura salesman when my girlfriend went car shopping- and got an Acura TL over a BMW. I have a friend with a 1988 Accord with almost double the miles of my Accord and he has no plans of getting rid of it any time soon.

Look into a 2 door Accord or Civic if you insist on 2 doors. Try to get the V6 Accord if possible. The power you get for the fuel used is pretty amazing. Pretty much anything Honda builds is incredibly well mannered on the road. Of all the Hondas I have driven I have always been impressed by how well they handle and how the cars almost drive themselves. Also, Honda's hold their value well so it might be hard to find a steal in the used market. But it can be done if time is on your side. I still have people offer me real money for my nasty looking 1990.


User currently offlineLOT767-300ER From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 19, posted (6 years 10 months 2 weeks 4 days 23 hours ago) and read 1718 times:

Ive often wondered, is it out of a lack of money or just pure sentinment that people keep cars for 18 years? I am not talking about classics here or performance cars but cars like an old Accord, Chevy or Ford Truck or a Dodge Caravan.

User currently offlineCaptOveur From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 20, posted (6 years 10 months 2 weeks 4 days 23 hours ago) and read 1715 times:



Quoting LOT767-300ER (Reply 19):
is it out of a lack of money or just pure sentinment that people keep cars for 18 years?

Why pay a bank several hundred dollars a month for a car when there is nothing wrong with what I am driving? I can do other things with that money. Would I like another car? Yeah. Do I need one? No. I found one I like and doesn't piss me off, so I like to hang onto it.

Honestly if I were going to go buy a car tomorrow I would just go out and buy another Accord.


User currently offlineCzbbflier From Canada, joined Jul 2006, 984 posts, RR: 2
Reply 21, posted (6 years 10 months 2 weeks 4 days 18 hours ago) and read 1685 times:

I'd strongly suggest you go out and either borrow from the library or buy a copy of Phil Edmunston's Lemon-Aid book on New Cars. His advice has to be some of the very best around.

Cheers!


User currently offlineDougloid From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 22, posted (6 years 10 months 2 weeks 2 days 14 hours ago) and read 1602 times:

Right now we've got two Japanese cars-a 1993 Mazda MPV and a 1987 Mitsubishi pickup. They're both good solid vehicles. The van's got 150,000 miles on it and the pickup has 155,000 miles on it. I boutght the pickup at an auction for $700 five years ago and I did have to overhaul the engine at 130,000 miles due to whatever the previous owner did to it.

I'm pretty well satisfied with Japanese, and we're fixing to buy a new Honda Element this year and replace the Mazda. What sold me aside from the good results people are having with them is that it's built in Ohio. That did it for me.

Our last new car was a 1987 Plymouth Voyager. It lasted 216,000 miles before it expired, and for the last 100,000 miles it was a money pit.


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