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2001 with 4,000 Miles on it?

 
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  #1 (permalink)  
Old 14 Jun 2015, 09:58 am
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Join Date: May 2013
Location: Hamilton, Ontario
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Default 2001 with 4,000 Miles on it?

My 2001 PT died last week with 150,000 miles on it. (Wicked winters and I didn't keep on top of the rust like I should have.)

At any rate, I've been shopping and all I can say about new cars is some hatchbacks get good mileage, beyond that they leave me cold. In my price range the cars are uncomfortable and I can't find anything that does the back seat flip-up. (Which is freaking brilliant for transporting dogs.)

I found a 2001 Cruiser nearby that has a great body and has the interior I love (IMO the later model Cruisers aren't as appealing as the 2001!) but it only has 40,000 (NOT 4,000 - typo) miles on it. It's a one owner, rust-proofed auto that's selling e-tested, and safety certified car with a clean CarProof. The seller is looking for $5,000 (So about $49.95 in USD .) The seller did say that the front sway bar bushings were replaced.

I know that seals and belts can take a beating if a car sits but I would be okay having some work done - That being said, I don't want to have to rebuild an engine. Trying to get some idea of whether this could be an okay purchase or whether disaster is likely a given.

Input would be appreciated.

Last edited by lellis; 29 Jun 2015 at 04:16 pm. Reason: Can't see the damn tiny cell screen!
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Old 14 Jun 2015, 10:13 am
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Join Date: Mar 2012
Location: darien il
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Default Re: 2001 with 4,000 Miles on it?

Are you sure 4000 isn't a spelling error?

Sounds neat to me.
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Old 14 Jun 2015, 10:38 am
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Join Date: May 2014
Location: Pasadena TX
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Default Re: 2001 with 4,000 Miles on it?

Take it out for a test drive of at least thirty minutes duration at highway and city speeds. Be careful of brake failure. If it performs well, stop and check for leaks underneath. A super low mile fourteen year old car can be a great thing to acquire or a temporary maintenance nightmare.
At the least I would replace all the radiator, heater, and other rubber hoses and the drive belts. The timing belt may be a risk but failure is more likely on the thirty minute test drive than much latter. The brake system might have to be rebuilt as the disc Pistons and drum cylinders may fail after being excercised which again the test drive should uncover.
Give it a go.
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Old 14 Jun 2015, 10:45 am
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Join Date: May 2013
Location: Hamilton, Ontario
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Default Re: 2001 with 4,000 Miles on it?

No, LOL, but there must be a story behind it. Haven't heard what it is so far.

I just found a local 2007 with 45,000 miles on it. at a dealer Also being sold certified and safetied, but with a six-month limited warranty. I'm much more comfortable with that, and the price is just a couple hundred more. Taking a look tomorrow.

Fingers crossed that this is the one!
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Old 14 Jun 2015, 12:27 pm
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Join Date: Aug 2014
Location: Thousand Oaks, CA
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Default Re: 2001 with 4,000 Miles on it?

On the 2007 PT Cruiser I would check the motor mounts. Have someone inside the PT Cruiser while you are looking at the engine under the hood. Put it in drive while the foot is on the brake and see if the engine moves back and fourth more than 3/8 of an inch. The first one I looked at was a 2008 at a dealer and it was moving about an 1" and you can feel it jerking back and fourth inside the PT Cruiser.

When you first start up the PT Cruiser turn on the A/C and make sure the radiator fan comes on almost immediately.

Go under the PT Cruiser and make sure there are no oil leaks. Check the CV Booths on both sides to make sure they are clean and not torn. After test driving the PT Cruiser get under the vehicle and check again for leaks.

Make sure you drive it up a hill to check the engine and transmission for anything out of the ordinary if you have one in the area.

Last edited by ptcruisersteve; 14 Jun 2015 at 12:32 pm.
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Old 15 Jun 2015, 06:12 am
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Join Date: May 2013
Location: Hamilton, Ontario
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Default Re: 2001 with 4,000 Miles on it?

First issue is that I can't type on my cell. Rob342 was right - Typing error, but mine, not the seller's. The car has 40,000

That being said, I still think that's low for a 15 year old car and I still have condensation and hose-rot concerns. Maintenance records will help. Apparently they have them!

I'd forgotten about the dang motor mounts. Thanks for the reminder. Won't be able to get anyone to come along as I'm heading to out first thing today, but I'll get the dealer to start it and rev it while I take a gander.

There is a seriously steep escarpment to take a run up, and I will do the leak test. If all the basic stuff seems good I'll have it taken to my mechanic for a pre-purchase inspection.

Thanks!
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Old 15 Jun 2015, 07:50 am
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Default Re: 2001 with 4,000 Miles on it?

I actually think it's better that is has 40,000 not 4,000 miles. Replacement of belts and hoses would be a good precaution.
Sure sounds like a good find.
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Old 15 Jun 2015, 07:14 pm
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Location: Hamilton, Ontario
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Default Re: 2001 with 4,000 Miles on it?

Well checking out the 2007 was interesting. On the test drive the guy got in and told me to go to the street and turn right. I said I was going left because I wanted to take it up the hill. He said "no". (No?!) and told me a story about only being able to drive in a certain area due to insurance.

I turned the car off and pulled out the keys, then he said we could go wherever I wanted.

It handled well but at low speeds it sort of hiccupped into a lower gear a couple of times. He told me that's just how the PT downshifts. (Obviously forgetting that I'd been driving one for 15 years *shakes head*)

I wanted to do some tight circles in an empty parking lot to check for mechanical protest. but he didn't like that. (The car didn't mind.)

I wasn't very enthusiastic about the whole thing.

The salesman has emailed and called a couple times since. Says the mechanic replaced a CV shaft and did a "transition relearn" and the hesitation is gone and car runs great.

Have no idea if he's zooming me - He may well be! I did like the car for the most part. Not a speck of rust which is a big plus on an older car in Southern Ontario.
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Old 15 Jun 2015, 08:28 pm
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Default Re: 2001 with 4,000 Miles on it?

Sounds like a good candidate to bring a low offer and see what happens. Never know you might pick it up for under $ 4500.00. Best time to negotiate is when you really do not care one way or the other.
lellis likes this.
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Old 16 Jun 2015, 11:06 am
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Default Re: 2001 with 4,000 Miles on it?

The good thing is that you have had a previous PT Cruiser so you know what a correct one should sound and drive like. From what you stated it sounds like a private party sale and not from a dealer. Does he have a Car Fax on the car? If not pay the $40 bucks and have one done. This will show you how many owners. Does he have maintenance records? His asking price sounds high. Do a Kelley Blue Book private party value and don't pay more than their recommended pricing. I just bought a 2005 convertible with 23,000 miles. The seller wanted $6,900. I showed them that KBB average price was $5,500. I paid $5,800 and felt I got it at a fair price.
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