If you have the time, keep an eye out on ebay and car-part.com for individual wheels and collect them separately; that's what I did with the XJ. Stockers can go cheap in the aftermarket, though maybe that's more a Jag thing because their offset and hub size make them less valuable.
As an alternative you might want to consider the Nokian WRG3 4-Seasons. I ran the previous WRG2's on a couple of my cars in the past and they were exceptional tires in or out of the snow. I live in a warm mountain valley where you can go from spring/fall conditions and dry roads at the valley bottom to 3 feet of snow and blizzard conditions up the mountains within the space of a half hour so I need tires that can handle both well and the Nokians do the job. And they appear to come in your stock sizes (225/45R18 and 245/45R18) http://www.nokiantires.com/all-weather-tires/nokian-wrg3/
Why do people selling cars on craigslist always seem to act like they don't want to sell the car? I was about ready to buy a car when i noticed a mistake on the title (made mistake when filling out the buyer section and crossed out a word he had started writing). I told him that that mistake means the title is invalid and he needs to get a new one. That was two weeks ago and i text he every so often to see if he got the title but he keeps dragging his ass. If the car wasn't just about exactly what i'm looking for, i would have moved on already but here i am.
Stupid question... Do modifications need to be reported to your insurance company in the US? I always thought you were free to do whatever you wanted but they wouldn't cover anything you didn't tell them about.
Most of a cars braking is handled up front. Like 70+% iirc. Floaters are more than good enough out back.
I think it's perfectly normal to sit in the front of the taxi.
In Berlin, locals always get in the back because there's a strict "what I don't see I can't enforce" policy regarding seat belt use employed by most drivers, i.e., if you ride in the back, you don't have to buckle up.