Final Gear Challenge

Blind_Io

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This topic came up in another forum. A kid wanted to know what he could get for $500. The answer is: nothing worth having. But a teenager can save up a good sum of money with a summer job, so let's up that to $5,000 (US).

Given $5,000 what would you get? This has to be a car that you would actually be willing to own and drive.

I jumped on Auto Trader and found a couple of early to mid 1990's Mercedes 300D sedans for $4,000 and $4,700.

However I think that this is the winner for me. 1983 Mercedes-Benz 300TD. Power everything, cruise control, AC, leather seats, and it looks really clean inside. I especially like the old lady booster seat pads, it keeps the wear down on the leather and it means the car was probably babied by the former owner. Racers and young kids don't buy this kind of car, they couldn't afford it at the time even if they wanted one. It's a comfortable car for a guy my size and I know I like driving them. It's a diesel so it would get great mileage. I don't care what Clarkson says, there's nothing wrong with diesel cars and they're actually highly sought after in California.

Ok, it does have 185,000 miles on the clock, but for a car like this that's nothing. This old Benz will probably run for another 100,000 miles with the right care. Anyway, how many teens can say they have the title to their own fullsize Mercedes-Benz? It's probably a nicer car than what Mom and Dad are driving.







All of that for $3,000, easily within the reach of a teenager with a summer job. With the budget of $5,000 that leaves $2,000 for insurance costs or whatever else you want to spend it on.

So, what would you buy with your $5,000 US?

EDIT - Please read!

Ok, I think I need to clarify a few things about the challenge

1- This must be a car you would actually buy and drive as your only car. That means that if you buy a Nissan 300Z you will end up with two seats and no boot and no other car to fall back on to carry people or stuff. You have no wheels and only $5,000 to spend on the vehicle cost. We will ignore licensing fees and insurance for the purpose of this challenge.

2- Don't just post a photo of the car you want to buy, the purpose of the challenge is to actually find that car for your budget.

3- Auctions. Auctions are acceptable, but only if they have already ended and are within your price range. Don't post an auction of a Ferrari with only one $4,000 bid on it and three weeks remaining.
 

Blind_Io

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Hey, that's younger than me, you little whipper-snapper!

Actually, I chose this one because our family car when I was younger was a Mercedes-Benz 300D Turbo, very similar to this model, just a little lower down the line. I have a nostalgic soft-spot for the early 80's Mercedes models, which is one of the reasons I chose this one. Believe it or not, but there were some from the early 80's that appear to be going up in price, not down. Several were starting to push $9,000 and one was over $10,000! These old Mercedes are going to be real collectors items in a couple years.

Now get off my lawn, ya damn kids! 8)
 

SL65

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Re: Final Gear Challenge

Blind_Io said:
Racers and young kids don't buy this kind of car, they couldn't afford it at the time even if they wanted one.
Yeah your right about that one. Nice though an old Merc S-Class is, it isn't cool enough for someone in their teens, like myself. I'd love the comfort but the image of a 16 Y.O. in an old S-Class is just weird, lol.

I'd go for something like this:
1998 Subaru Legacy GT Wagon 2.5L $4999 on AutoTrader




It's decently fast (165hp) without being uneconomical (21-26MPG). It's safe with dual air bags, ABS and the security of AWD when it's wet. It's a wagon and Subaru wagons are cool. And also, for something that's almost 10-years old, it's still a good looking car.

I'm looking to buy one (it's called the Liberty here) over the x-mas holidays and obviously you'll here all about it! They're great cars and the Euro spec versions that Australia got are better looking and equipped than the American ones I checked out on AutoTrader. I think they're great!

//edit - Link:
http://tinyurl.com/rw8ws
 

Blind_Io

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SL65AMG~V12~612BHP!!!!!!!,

That's a nice pick. I do disagree about the teenager in a big old Mercedes, though. I used to drive my parents' 1983 300D around on Friday nights and I got more attention than guys with cars worth twice as much. One night I was just on my way home and I happened to end up on State Street (Salt Lake's main drag). The custom once was that Friday and Saturday night kids would go cruise State, just like American Graffiti. This went on until about 2000 when the city passed an ordinance against it. Anyway, I was in the Mercedes and I had a car of girls hitting on me at almost every light. I wasn't even there to pick anyone up, and I didn't have the look of someone Cruising, mostly because I was alone and usually you go in groups.

It's a matter of preference, and that's what the thread is all about, I just thought I would share that little anecdote with you. For a bit I thought that new and flash was the way to go, but I quickly realized that there are other ways of making a statement.
 

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Auto trader isn't really easy to use for non-Us citizens and you cannot buy something before 1981.
I took mobile.de and looked for a 4000 euros car (5000$=4K ? )

this is what I would have bought (sadly I didn't find any really interesting triumphs for that price apart from some spitfire MK5)
Alfa romeo Spider from 1978 ,with the 2liter engine , great condition but I would buy 4 classic Alfa wheels for this car





or this beautiful Jaguar XJ6 MANUAL (quite rare) for 3750euros


 

Blind_Io

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the body looks like it's in good shape, but the seats need to be re-covered. I'm not sure how much that will run, out here in California I could probably find someone to do it for $2/hour plus materials.
 

triumph

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OMG!!!OMG!!!
Triumph Spitfire MK3 with overdrive!
HAAAAAAAA 3100euros!!!!!!And it's in France , can't believe it!!!
Sure it's not in a perfect shape but 3100euros is a bargain!


 

GraemeH

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Presuming $5000 kid-on money = ?2500:

It's the Twin-Turbo (not the NA) so 300bhp (minus whatever it has lost over its life), it has the targa roof, manual box and it has some options: "Ice Cold Aircon, Sony Mini-Disc System with 10 CD Changer, Electric Windows/Mirrors/Seats PAS, Central Locking, Titanium Key, Black Leather Interior, Cruise Control, Uprated Discs and Brakes", all for ?50 under budget, so you'd get some petrol included in the price too.



 

SL65

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Blind_Io said:
Anyway, I was in the Mercedes and I had a car of girls hitting on me at almost every light. I wasn't even there to pick anyone up, and I didn't have the look of someone Cruising, mostly because I was alone and usually you go in groups.
Sure they weren't drunk? :p

Nah kidding! I do see your point though. I guess the 3-pointed star holds some appeal. They could have just mistaken it for a larger Merc though..


GraemeH - How many miles done though?? Sweet car though - just depends on the mileage.
 

andyhui01

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If I was a student and looking for a car of ~$5000, just hopped on autotrader and naturally choose a sensible, reliable and preferably more modern car.

best choice would be:







quite modern interior, well kept, not riced and only $4500.
 

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SL65AMG~V12~612BHP!!!!!!! said:
GraemeH - How many miles done though?? Sweet car though - just depends on the mileage.
Just over 100k :( But it does look pristine. Only 2 owners, and just had some big servicing, so it should do for a few years without costs getting high.
 

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Ok this is a bit out of the price range Blind_Io set(5400), but come on
a porsche 928 S2 from switzerland and MANUAL (really hard to find) , that's really rare , plus this one is the "Scarface" version 8) (thought in the film, his was white).
It's in mint condition, second hand and has a good Porsche service history.
You can see that the owner took great care of his car, just look at the engine bay! You could eat on it!
If I had the cash I would already be on the phone!(I love the early versions of the 928 )







Oh did I mention it has only 123 000km ?
 

SL65

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triumph - Bah! You broke the unwritten rule in buying a car (or a house) of STICKING TO YOUR BUDGET.

Nice car though :)

matt2000 said:
i would buy this
clicky
$2500 with only 82000 miles (nothing for one of these and i like the colour)
Now you certainly won't be picking up chicks in that! :p But you could have the maddest fun with it, even if it doesn't bring in the ladies.

I like :thumbsup:
 

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Following options:

Mint condition 205 GTI and still have som money left

A cheapish Integrale 8v or HF4WD

Reanult Clio 16v/Williams (if you can find a cheap Williams)

BMW E30 325i
 

andyhui01

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to those who choose the Old Porsche, the Triumph, that old jag and the alfa romeo,

If you really had $5000 to buy a car to commute to uni everyday, would you really be buying those?

Blind_Io said:
This has to be a car that you would actually be willing to own and drive.
 
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