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Looking at Buying a Cruiser

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Old 16 May 2013, 11:55 pm
Fresh Cruiser
Join Date: May 2013
Location: Texas
Posts: 4
Default Looking at Buying a Cruiser

Hi guys,
I originally posted this in the "Welcome New Members" section, but wasn't getting responses to my questions, just welcomes (I'm fine with that and thank you to those that did, but not really my purpose for being here). I figured more members would be browsing through here than in the welcome section, so I'll post it here to.

I've been recently looking at getting a cheap used car, and it looks as though the PT Cruiser is at the top of the list for it's combination of availability, age, price, and condition for the price.

While the monies to purchase the car won't be released by the bank for another week and a half, I have already started looking at the market and talking to dealers. I've found 2 at a nearby front yard dealer. He's asking $3,850 for either car. 1 is a black on black (dark slate grey?) 2005 5-speed with 113,000 miles, the other is a silver on grey 2006 auto with 120,000. It was raining when looking at them, so I couldn't really get a good look at them. However, they did look like they were in really good cosmetic shape. As a matter of fact, the dealer is driving the'05 personally (when I first saw it, I thought it wasn't for sale. It wasn't until he said that it was also for sale that I paid it much attention.). I believe both are in Limited trim (body color bumpers, alloy wheels, and power windows/door locks for sure). I doubt either is a Turbo.

Personally, I like the '05 for 2 reasons. 1 it's a 5 speed (I prefer manual transmission over automatic any day of the week), and 2 it's black (I like black and, while they're nice and I do like silver as well, I'm getting tired of seeing multiple silver Cruisers every day, with few other color exceptions. My friend's is silver, so I can't really knock it too much).

I'm hoping at least the 5 speed will be there when I can go back to purchase one. If not, he said he generally gets quite a few Cruisers in (he just sold a convertible yesterday).

This leads me to a few questions.

1. From my understanding, the timing belt should be serviced at around 100k miles. Am I correct in that?

2. Considering book value for either car for a private seller would be at least $4,500, and retail goes up to at least $6k if everything is in the same condition as the body. If I find that, given their mileage and price, either one of or both cars have not had their timing belt serviced would that be a possible price negotiation point to get him to come down? Or would that be a possible reason why they are only $3,850 ?

3. The dealer is an older gentleman working by himself, I'm assuming receiving retirement pay and sells cars to supplement, and operates out of a shed turned into an office in his front yard, feasibly giving him low overhead costs. Do you guys think this could be a reason his prices are so low (I checked a couple of his other cars, and they are also below book value at the private seller prices)?

4. What should I look for on these cars (PT Cruiser known trouble spots) that would be deal breakers, maintenance hassles, or negotiation points?

Here's the pics of the cars I'm looking at.

2005 5-Speed

2006 Automatic

Thanks in advance.
  #2 (permalink)  
Old 17 May 2013, 03:32 am
Obsessed Cruiser
Join Date: Sep 2001
Posts: 27,757
Default Re: Looking at Buying a Cruiser

Why are you posting the same thing again? You already said the same thing in the welcome area and got several responses. Please don't post the same thing twice. People come to the forum and can see all the new posts so no need to repeat what you already said. Thanks.
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Last edited by CREWZIN; 17 May 2013 at 03:41 am.
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