Automotive

Please comment on my logic

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  • Jan 25th, 2013 10:06 am
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[OP]
Deal Addict
Feb 25, 2007
1183 posts
613 upvotes
Ottawa

Please comment on my logic

Falling ice totalled my mother's car. Good no one got hurt, but it's a writeoff (was a 2002 wagon). Insurance paying out.

She's in her 70s, in fine form, but only drives 2-3X a week and to one major vacation a year. Perfectly happy with a used car (small SUV or wagon) in good condition that has a reasonable number of years of life left in it.

I see a number of good-priced 5-6 year old Subarus with 160-200k kms - a bit higher than average. Given she will accumulate kms at a low rate, assuming a mechanic we trust checks the car out, think this might be a good option. Thoughts? If I roll the clock forward 2-3 years, what's likely to go more wrong on a 8 year old car that's been driven 20k/year all the time versus one that was driven 30k/year for 5 years and then 2-5k/yr for the next 2?

Thanks!
6 replies
Deal Fanatic
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Mar 24, 2004
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Toronto
Reliability and safety are probably your highest concerns, amirite? Subaru isn't a bad choice; though make sure timing belt has been done.

I'd also consider Matrix AWD. You're right, as long as a trusted mechanic goes over it with a fine-toothed comb; and it is/will be properly maintained, you're typically in the clear.
Deal Expert
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Feb 26, 2004
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Sounds like a good plan. Subaru is a good choice.
Sr. Member
May 29, 2012
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MAPLE RIDGE
How much you spend on maintenance will depend on what the previous owner has done to it.

Suspension parts commonly start to be or are worn at that mileage and can add up quick. A great scenario would to find one where the previous owner has service records of common wear items being replaced.
Deal Addict
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Feb 10, 2007
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The Subaru will be a great choice for her. It's safe in the winter and really sturdy vehicle. The only downside is that the parts for Subaru's are expensive and hard to find.
BlackJays wrote:
Mar 13th, 2010 6:02 pm
shame has been acheived
[OP]
Deal Addict
Feb 25, 2007
1183 posts
613 upvotes
Ottawa
Thanks for the replies and suggestions what to look out for. I've had a Subaru Forester and think it as well as the Outback are great for the purpose designed. My wife loved her (old) Matrix AWD. Thanks esp. for the remark on service/parts availability - has made me realize to also consider that she has a Ford and Subaru dealership with service within walking distance of her house. I know both, while overpriced compared to an independent mechanic, don't cheat or invent stuff. That's a factor to consider (in favour of the Subaru over Toyota; think Ford wagons are now much rarer) as well.
Member
Apr 1, 2010
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houska wrote:
Jan 25th, 2013 9:56 am
Thanks for the replies and suggestions what to look out for. I've had a Subaru Forester and think it as well as the Outback are great for the purpose designed. My wife loved her (old) Matrix AWD. Thanks esp. for the remark on service/parts availability - has made me realize to also consider that she has a Ford and Subaru dealership with service within walking distance of her house. I know both, while overpriced compared to an independent mechanic, don't cheat or invent stuff. That's a factor to consider (in favour of the Subaru over Toyota; think Ford wagons are now much rarer) as well.
make sure you mechanic does a Compression test. I never buy a Subaru with out doing that. Lots of helpful info on the forums

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