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I've been seriously considering getting a beater for the summer. My thought process is basically that shore pax have a much higher probability of being sick and/or trashy in the car, and it's a lot more prevalent funding gunk and contraband in the car after a shore weekend than my usual clientele.

So the question is, what should the budget be for a beater? Obviously it had to be XL, so that means minivan or SUV.

I've been looking at 2005-2008 Chrysler T&Cs and Caravans, as well as 03-05 Honda Pilots.

Also, any other recommendations for possible beaters would be appreciated.
 

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I'm considering getting a Honda Pilot or seeing what Hyundai and Kia have to offer in the same seating capacity. I realize a lot of people might not like Hyundais but I've driven them as my past two vehicles and I swear to God these cars are dependable and inexpensive to maintain and usually good on gas. I'm specifically talking about a 2010 Hyundai Sonata that I'm driving right now. I myself would not consider a Chrysler product due to the many issues I've had buying them brand new or used. One of my main considerations is reliability and cost of mandatory maintenance.

I would love to hear what other drivers may consider good vehicles and what experiences they've had with them in recent years concerning reliability and maintenance costs. I'm looking to buy something with in the years of 2003-2006. Thank you in advance for any input you may have in this matter.
 

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I'm considering getting a Honda Pilot or seeing what Hyundai and Kia have to offer in the same seating capacity. I realize a lot of people might not like Hyundais but I've driven them as my past two vehicles and I swear to God these cars are dependable and inexpensive to maintain and usually good on gas. I'm specifically talking about a 2010 Hyundai Sonata that I'm driving right now. I myself would not consider a Chrysler product due to the many issues I've had buying them brand new or used. One of my main considerations is reliability and cost of mandatory maintenance.

I would love to hear what other drivers may consider good vehicles and what experiences they've had with them in recent years concerning reliability and maintenance costs. I'm looking to buy something with in the years of 2003-2006. Thank you in advance for any input you may have in this matter.
And the Hyundai 1.6,1.8,and 2.0 liter engine are all different stroke variations designed and originally built by Mitsubishi Dodge/ Chrysler,& Hyundai together in a joint effort. Hyundai also owns large chunk of Kia. They make a great 6 speed auto transmission.
They all retain rights to build basically the same engines.
 

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I'd rather drive a nicer car then take a chance on 180K mile time bomb . To each his own. 3 grand sounds cheap but at 180K miles your leaning on a roulette wheel
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
I'd rather drive a nicer car then take a chance on 180K mile time bomb . To each his own. 3 grand sounds cheap but at 180K miles your leaning on a roulette wheel
That's why when you buy a beater, the three most important things are the brakes, steering, and tires. If those three are good to go, then you are pretty much set.
 

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I'd rather drive a nicer car then take a chance on 180K mile time bomb . To each his own. 3 grand sounds cheap but at 180K miles your leaning on a roulette wheel
Indeed, but if you're only keeping it for a summer it's low risk so long as you have your mechanic thoroughly look it over before taking it home. Your worst case is you blow the trans and you're out $2000 additional. But that's a selling feature when you turn it around and you'll get some of it back.

I've had a lot of major league beaters in my time and I've only rolled transmission snake eyes once. That car was 15 years old at the time but only had 45K (not a typo) on the clock. I put a trans in, got 3 years out of the car and sold it for more than I paid for it. I current have a beater pickup with 240K with the original engine and trans that I paid $3000 for 5 years ago intending to have it 6 months to a year. It had 192k when I got it.
 

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I've been seriously considering getting a beater for the summer. My thought process is basically that shore pax have a much higher probability of being sick and/or trashy in the car, and it's a lot more prevalent funding gunk and contraband in the car after a shore weekend than my usual clientele.

So the question is, what should the budget be for a beater? Obviously it had to be XL, so that means minivan or SUV.

I've been looking at 2005-2008 Chrysler T&Cs and Caravans, as well as 03-05 Honda Pilots.

Also, any other recommendations for possible beaters would be appreciated.
Why not the sienna ?? They are reliable and good on gas . Get the base model ones cheap from Craigslist.

Indeed, but if you're only keeping it for a summer it's low risk so long as you have your mechanic thoroughly look it over before taking it home. Your worst case is you blow the trans and you're out $2000 additional. But that's a selling feature when you turn it around and you'll get some of it back.

I've had a lot of major league beaters in my time and I've only rolled transmission snake eyes once. That car was 15 years old at the time but only had 45K (not a typo) on the clock. I put a trans in, got 3 years out of the car and sold it for more than I paid for it. I current have a beater pickup with 240K with the original engine and trans that I paid $3000 for 5 years ago intending to have it 6 months to a year. It had 192k when I got it.
I agree with ya . It all depends on the previous owner treatment. For automatic transmission is always best to change their fluid every 25k miles or before . Harsh acceleration can quickly damage the tourqe converter not to mentioned will drink up a lot of gas . I have had cars goes up to 270k with original transmission.
 

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Siennas hold their value better so they cost more up front. My mechanic has an 02 with 160k on it that I get driven home in on the rare occasion my T&C has to check in. He says the older Chrysler vans are similar in quality to the older Japanese ones. They both will run forever, it's everything else you have to worry about. The rattles in his van are every bit as bad as any 80s GM or Chrysler product I've ever owned.

For XL I am also extremely biased to captains chairs, leather seats, and power doors. Groups of partying drunks are ignorant savages who make it as hard as possible to keep your car clean and smelling fresh and they will step on your seats if you don't have captains chairs. Leather is much easier to clean and doesn't hold stank like cloth. Power doors make it easier for them to find you as well as making it easier for you to keep them from exiting into traffic. The other side is it's something else to break but you can disable them if they do and the doors will still operate.
 
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