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Thread: Help me find a car for $10k ish

  1. #1
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    Default Help me find a car for $10k ish

    I figured I'd add beyond to my points of research for some of the cars I'm interested in, as I've had no prior experience with some of them. Looking for a new daily driver, going to be shared with the gf. Current car is an EP3 hatch, while it's obviously not the fastest, still fun to drive around in the city. Still early in the research phase, probably looking to pick one up in 3-6mo?

    Criteria:
    - budget is $10k (ish)
    - 4 door
    - manual
    - sun/moonroof of some sort (my preference)
    - reliability is a concern (see Euro choices)
    - (arguably) not super boring to drive
    - I'm 6'3" - need something a little comfier because old-man back
    - small SUVs are out

    Options:
    - VW GTI
    - VW Jetta (is GLI out of my price range?)
    - BMW 328i (can someone speak about the reliability of this car? I've read mixed things about the N52)
    - IS250
    - Subaru Cross trek? (I rather not tbh lol)
    - TSX ?

    Open to hearing all other suggestions for cars I haven't thought of.

    Thanks in advance!

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    Most bang for your buck in that range will probably be a 2007+ G35/G37S. It's a lot of car for the money, and they're pretty reliable. You don't want to go older than that as the entire car is basically... shittier. Also the S models are actually pretty decent to drive and have very comfortable seats. I think the only real issue with these is the steering rack starts to leak a bit when they get higher miles (I drove mine up to ~180k and it was just starting to weep a tiny bit).

    edit: you might need your whole 6 month window to find one in decent shape for a decent price, as the S model 6mt sedan are not super common. Just be diligent though (or willing to travel).
    Last edited by cjblair; 07-02-2020 at 03:03 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by cjblair View Post
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    Most bang for your buck in that range will probably be a 2007+ G35/G37S. It's a lot of car for the money, and they're pretty reliable. You don't want to go older than that as the entire car is basically... shittier. Also the S models are actually pretty decent to drive and have very comfortable seats.
    Agreed with this.
    Although keep in mind the G37 requires premium fuel.

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    Good luck finding a 4 door 6mt G37... there was one a month ago on Kijiji nut it was gone pretty instantly.

    If it matters to you, the 7 speed autos Nissan uses sucks balls if you're even thinking of using the manumatic functions.

    From my experience, the most common and fun ones you'll find are Audi A4s and BMW 328s in that price range. Occasionally you'll find Acura TLs as well with the 6mt.

    GTIs for some reason command insane prices.

    Subaru Crosstreks are literally one of the slowest cars you will ever find.
    Last edited by JohnnyHockey13; 07-02-2020 at 03:06 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by jltabot View Post
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    - small SUVs are out
    Why? I'm sure @tonytiger55will tell you his Zonda CR-V meets most your criteria and is well under budget

    Your timeline makes sense though... people are probably still busy now replacing their flood damaged rust buckets.
    Last edited by jwslam; 07-02-2020 at 03:08 PM.

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    My choice would be A4. Great car.

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    A4 and 328 are both decent choices. Way less car for the money than the infiniti though, IMO. Also maintenance. Typical Audi timing chain shit is present on the 2.0T IIRC.

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    Fiesta ST
    Nolan

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    Definitely avoid the crosstrek, I think a 3 cylinder firefly is quicker than that Subaru.

    Find a A4 but make sure the piston rings were replaced under recall. Problem years were 2009-2013 I believe.

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    Quote Originally Posted by redblack View Post
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    Definitely avoid the crosstrek, I think a 3 cylinder firefly is quicker than that Subaru.

    Find a A4 but make sure the piston rings were replaced under recall. Problem years were 2009-2013 I believe.
    Good call. 2013 was ok on the A4. Had an 09 that burned way too much. Our 13 didn't burn a drop.

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    On the used market there are some solid VW deals to be had. Find a one owner from the SW and I'll bet it comes with all the service records since new.
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    Quote Originally Posted by ExtraSlow View Post
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    On the used market there are some solid VW deals to be had. Find a one owner from the SW and I'll bet it comes with all the service records since new.
    I half expected you to suggest another savage beast

    Quote Originally Posted by pheoxs View Post
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    Fiesta ST
    Focus ST, only to spite you.

    Quote Originally Posted by cjblair View Post
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    A4 and 328 are both decent choices. Way less car for the money than the infiniti though, IMO. Also maintenance. Typical Audi timing chain shit is present on the 2.0T IIRC.
    I forgot about the A4. I remember sitting in one though and definitely felt cramped in it. Not sure if I didn't play with the seat settings enough but it did feel tight.

    Quote Originally Posted by jwslam View Post
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    Why? I'm sure @tonytiger55will tell you his Zonda CR-V meets most your criteria and is well under budget

    Your timeline makes sense though... people are probably still busy now replacing their flood damaged rust buckets.
    I am all for small SUV's but seeing as I'm sharing this car, gf doesn't want to drive a small SUV. I also don't think many come in a manual... except maybe a CR-V and Tiguan.. if only the 4motion came in a 6 speed...

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    I've realized the Honda Fit is probably too Savage for most people. Can hardly hear "Sussudio" over the tires screaming.
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    Quote Originally Posted by jwslam View Post
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    Why? I'm sure @tonytiger55will tell you his Zonda CR-V meets most your criteria and is well under budget

    Your timeline makes sense though... people are probably still busy now replacing their flood damaged rust buckets.
    LOL... Thanks for the nod.

    OP. How long do you intend to keep the car?

    10K is a weird price point right now. I would say you need to be more realistic with your choices. Not impossible. If you want reliability, you might pay for it in maintenance with a Euro.

    Dare I say it. *drum roll* You can get a manual Honda CRV...I shit you not. They stopped making the manuals after 2005/6. Then the MK3 onwards were all autos.
    Here is a alternative.
    Keep a eye out for 2005 Manual CRV. You can get one for 4-5k max. Dont worry too much about the milage. I am just shy of 400km on mine. I bought mine in 2012 with 212k on the clock. In that time frame I know people who have changed their cars twice. You will get 580km on a tank during the summer.

    Just make sure the oil changes were done. Use the rest of the cash and replace the struts, sparkplugs and get yourself a set from Winter tyres from Bob at Urban Expressions. The K series block is solid. The change drawer on the drivers side is the perfect size to place your iphone or Samsung S9. Thats how advanced the engineering is. To think back in 2002 that the Japanese engineers could foresee that... its is pure genius.

    It is actually rather fun to drive, especially in the winter with the AWD. Its not fast but hitting second gear will make you 'think' you are in hyperspace.
    Not only that... it comes with a built in picnic table.... I shit you not. I have used the utility aspect in all forms, I have moved into my new place, mountain biking, picking up woodwork material, helping friends move, buying a big tv, taking stuff to the dump. Its handy.

    Fun fact.. (dont laugh) The ride is actually better than a 2020 Subaru Forrester. Im not making this up. LOL. Me and my gf I test drove one. The ride was more 'bouncy and floaty. The CRV rides a lot firmer like a car and handles the offramps better. Thats coming from my gf.

    You can buy the cars listed above, but you will have to pay a bit to get the major maintenance done.
    The only other vehicle I can think of would be a Acura TL/TSX or a Nissan Altima.

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    The Lexus IS is a great choice. It's just the cup holder that makes you hate the car. The TSX might be a better option from a useability standpoint if you're going to get something that small anyway. Plus the TSX comes in Manual which is nice(Yes the IS comes manual, but only in a base model 250). Either car will be rock solid reliable. The TSX will ave a ton more options for aftermarket fun if you ever decide to go that route. The K24 is a great engine.

    The N52 is fairly reliable if you're talking about the engine itself. I've had 4 of them. But you can expect that every 100k, you'll be replacing Spark plugs, coils, vaccum hoses, and valve cover gasket. The engine is just very finicky about it's vaccum, any little pin hole anywhere and you'll be throwing misfire codes that will make you want to pull your hair out. If you get one new enough to have a DISA valve in it, you'll want to replace it as a preventative maintenance item, and they're not cheap. Eventually the valve breaks apart and the pin that holds the flapper ends up inside your engine and punches a hole in a piston.

    Personally I'd choose an A4 over a BMW 3 series. Just get one that doesn't have an oil consumption issue, and stay on top of doing the timing service at proper intervals, the rest is rock solid. And if you get bored of it after awhile, just bring it over and we can swap a 2.7T into it from the B5 S4.

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    after some more reading it looks like maintenance items for the 328i and A4 might put me out of my budget.

    Has anyone had experience with the Subaru Legacy Spec B's? Thinking it'd be rather fun to have wrx-esque power but comfort of a full sized sedan.

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    Probably kind of hard to find in 4 door, but an 06-12/13 civic si fits your budget by alot if older and they have a 6 speed. I have an 09 coupe SI and its fun as shit.

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    Few choices: Fiesta SI, Civic SI (2008-2011 had synchro grind sorted), TSX/ TL.
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    I will have a low mileage 2009 A4 for sale in a month or two with almost new summer and winter shoes.
    Quote Originally Posted by The_Rural_Juror View Post
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    I have no data to support this.

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    Quote Originally Posted by 03ozwhip View Post
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    Probably kind of hard to find in 4 door, but an 06-12/13 civic si fits your budget by alot if older and they have a 6 speed. I have an 09 coupe SI and its fun as shit.
    Oh this is an awesome idea. The Acura version had a type s version that came in 6mt sedan as well.

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