So you got 20,000 to buy a car.

p0w3r

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Well thats kind of my situation right now. I have a budget of 20,000 to spend on any car...new or used. Now for new cars, i really dont think theres anything that interesting out there, mostly bland honda civics, but please correct me if i am wrong.

As of the used car market things can get a bit more interesting. I have been looking at 2004 Acura TL, which seem to be in general huge values. I mean, good looking, powerful, and comfortable. I have also been looking at Lexus ES330s, but they seem too boring. I have seen a few Audi A4s which seem interesting.

So here i am asking for some other suggestions or some things i missed. I'm open to coupes and sedans of any type so please let me know of anything that comes up in your mind.:)
 

BlaRo

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Buy something that won't get lost in a parking lot!

Seriously though, a used E55 (it'll probably be a money pit), S4, or similar mid-90s German vintage would be cool. If you want new, a Scion tC starts for a few grand less. You could even go for a slightly older WRX or something. $20k gets you a lot of neat iron out there, depending on how old you want to go back/how much work you want to toil over. (That's a rather obvious statement there, but oh well.)

(I've seriously been trawling eBay for the last 2 weeks straight, pretending to look for something older than 1979 on a limited budget. It's slowly killing me, but James and Richard were right: it really is the funnest game in the world.)
 

wooflepoof

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20,000? Just thikning off the top of my head Old M3s (get one of the superfans to give you e-numbers), BMW 850i(Ci if ure lucky) the older Jag XKs, M5s, Lotus Elan, Ferrari 308 GT/4(or a low quality GTB), a plethora of Mercedes including the late 90s SL(watch out for the repair costs tho), 26-30'll get you a newer-ish S-class, MGB, Jag XJS, Older EVOs and Imprezas if you can sneak a Lancia Delta Integrale in from Canada they have a couple, Nissan 240 260 280 300zx, keep in mind quite a few things i told you are either maintained reasonably well or a little bit less so for the price or might be a bit expensive with insurance, repairs, tc. but theres plenty of "interesting" things that can be had w/ 20k give or take. i once saw a first gen NSX for 24. My fav of the list is the 840/850 BMW
 

The_Finn

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for 20K you could get:

newish cars:
2004-2005 Pontiac GTO
2000-2001 Audi S4
2002-2003 Audi S6 (closer to 23k)
2002-2005 Lexus IS300

Older (better in my book)
E34 M5
E36 M3
E30 M3
Mercedes W124 500E (LOOK ONE IN NJ buy it BUY IT NOW) there are 2 others in or near new york on auto trader
Alfa Romeo 164
volvo 960

SPECIAL PROJECTS:
1982 Audi Ur Quattro seriously hot... own a bit of rally history

all of these results are confirmed via autotrader using some random manhattan zipcode and a 100 mile search radius
all cars are manual transmission other than the S6, Volvo and 500E which are all auto only

jesus look at the 500E god i want it... soooooooo bad
 
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Adunaphel

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20,000 what? Golden brown chicken nuggets? Hot, willing women? Pebbles?

I'll just assume you meant whatever my local currency would be :p
Porschebenzfront.jpg

W124 Mercedes-Benz 500E

<anorak>
@The_Finn: AMG had nothing to do with the 500E. It was co-developed with Porsche, and hand-built at the Zuffenhausen Porsche plant. Each car took 18 days to complete. AMG did do a modification of the 500E for the 1993 and 1994 model years, the E600 AMG, with a 6l V8 and 400ps, instead of the 325 of the 500E.
</anorak>
 
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cdbob

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Buy an old Volvo, and save the rest, spend it, or put some money in the Volvo, you will love it I promise.
 

MadCow809

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a quick general rule when buying a 2nd car. Go for something that has depreciated a lot over the past few years. make a list of what you have in mind and take it from there.

20grand is quite a bit, thats 2nd hand EVO/STI/S2000 money, all of them are a joy to drive.

when are you thinking of buying the car??
 

Dsemaj

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p0w3r

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wow, tons of replies..thanks guys. Just to answer a few questions:

I am planning to buy the car in the next few weeks or month...but definitely before the winter. I have already thought of Audi S4, but i am worried about maintaince and repair costs of the car. I want a comfortable, reliable, and fun car to drive. A older BMW E34 M5 has always been one of my dream cars, but once again, i bet repair costs are going to be crazy. An S2000 would also be sick...but the car is going to be a daily driver, so i dont think it would be as fitting. An EVO, or wrx is not comfortable enough in my opinion so i dont think it would fit here. So basically i want a slightly newer car with lowish miles. I will definately take a look at the Pontiac GTO, and maybe a Cadillac CTS? My friend had one and he seems to be doing well with it.
 

The_Finn

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500E doooooo it doooooooo it
 

73GMCSprint

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Definitely check out a newer GTO, preferably with the 6.0 LS2 engine. The LS1 models had a couple of bugs (not with the motor, but other things) that were worked out by the LS2 version.

Another option, if you're into this kind of car, would be an LS1 Camaro or T/A. Either one would be fun, quite reliable, and relatively inexpensive to repair, since they're american. Also, mods are very available for all three of these cars.

Take your time (assuming you have it) and shop around, try things out.
 

MadCow809

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wow, tons of replies..thanks guys. Just to answer a few questions:

I am planning to buy the car in the next few weeks or month...but definitely before the winter. I have already thought of Audi S4, but i am worried about maintaince and repair costs of the car. I want a comfortable, reliable, and fun car to drive. A older BMW E34 M5 has always been one of my dream cars, but once again, i bet repair costs are going to be crazy. An S2000 would also be sick...but the car is going to be a daily driver, so i dont think it would be as fitting. An EVO, or wrx is not comfortable enough in my opinion so i dont think it would fit here. So basically i want a slightly newer car with lowish miles. I will definately take a look at the Pontiac GTO, and maybe a Cadillac CTS? My friend had one and he seems to be doing well with it.

E39 M5 is quite expensive to run, you will have to do some major service such as the clutch, brakes, tyres etc.. being a second hand car, you will also have problem financing it & insurance fee will be a little bit more on the steep side.

There is absolutely nothing wrong with a S2000 as a daily vehicle, unless u are married and have kids to worry about.

Personally, i think STI/EVOs are quite comfortable to drive around as well, but thats just my personal opinion, but go test drive an S2000, trust me, its a brilliant car:D:D
 

Adunaphel

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you want a drive if i buy it?:p

I'm not so sure about it. Over 100k miles, and being a limited run car, repairs and parts are going to be a bitch.

German manufacturers are very good with spare parts. I drive a 1990 190E and all parts are available from stock at my local MB dealer. One of the nice things of driving ze Germanz. And 500E is one of the coolest cars ever. You cannot find a similarly fast sedan that is as inconspicuous as the 500E.
 

thedguy

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you want a drive if i buy it?:p

I'm not so sure about it. Over 100k miles, and being a limited run car, repairs and parts are going to be a bitch.

Mercedes never stopped making parts for it. They STILL make and keep a catalog of parts for the original 300SL Gullwings, they only made around 1300 of 'em. The 500E is honestly the last good Benz, after 94 their cars took a shit in quality.

The problem with anything German is if it's not "standard maintenance" then it's going to be expensive to fix. The Germans love using these great designs that boost driving dynamics by .000000003% but make working on them tedious and time consuming. Around here standard labor rates at the German dealers are about $100/hour plus parts cost. I honestly see a bigger problem in finding and getting financing for them. They are 13 year old cars, but the benefit is they will likely only go UP in value.

Try looking into a Mazdaspeed 3, unless you have a thing against FWD. Brand new they are a little over budget, but if you're decent haggler you can probably get it pretty close, or buy second hand. Just to throw it out there... Mazdaspeed 6 thought thats closer to 30k

Also on the FWD front, SAAB's. I think they look quite good (especially considering the 9-3 is technically a turbo charged Cobalt), but they also pull from and add a lot to the GM parts bin, so they should be to expensive to service.

Those are what I'd look into anyway.

edit: I personally thought the CTS was a decent looking/built car, never had the chance to drive one, but if you can get a test drive in a 3.6 version of one in you're price range, I'd give it a shot.
 
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