By on January 24, 2014
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I have three choices for a “New or Used?” column today.

#1 Is a real estate agent from San Francisco who is looking at spending $13,000 on her next ride. She needs something ‘nice’ to shepherd around her clients.

#2 Is the owner of an Acura RSX Type-S that has 108,000 miles. He is looking at whether to spend about $1500 in new tires and suspensions components. Or whether to blow the budget and spend $40,000 on something new.

#3 Is Baba Booey


Hi there. I’m a guy who lives right outside of New York City and the winters here can be brutal. For a guy like me that leaves work at 4:30 in the morning, temperatures can sometimes be in the low single digits.

That’s why I’ve always had a remote starter on the car. I need my next car to be one that can heat quickly, has good handling on icey roads, and strange as it sounds, a small glasshouse area. Every car I have ever owned tends to fog up whenever I drive it in the middle of the night; regardless of how strong the defrost is. This is why the contours of the windshield and surrounding windows are a big pet peeve of mine.

I would strongly prefer  a car with flat windows and good visibility all the way around.  Just about every two months, I also need to put some Windex on the windshield to clean it up, and a large one with hard to get to corners results in a cloudy, foggy build-up over time that I just don’t like.

My budget is about $30,000 and I’m buying new. What out there represents the best combination of great heat, solid handling on slippery roads, and easy to service windows?

Steve Says

#1 Should get the second to last generation Infiniti Q45. They are unique in the marketplace, incredibly luxurious, and a well-kept one will only cost about $7000. The right color combination can exude all the luxury and prestige you would ever want in an older car, and I can easily see a silver one with a dark tan to black interior exuding all the upward mobility you need for your customers who are trying to get that little edge in the real estate market.

#2 should visit the RSX forums and see what they have to say about tires and suspension upgrades. There would really be no point in spending $40,000 or even half that amount on another car. For less than $2000 you can have a car that can ride like new and continue to give you all the fun you ever wanted back. The RSX also has a solid long-term reliability record. So I would just keep what you have and look at the upgrades as a healthy investment.

#3 just described every new Scion that is currently selling for less than $20,000.

Beth Ostrosky Celebrates FHM Coverwakpaper

A Scion iQ would have the advantage of finding parking spaces in the traffic congested areas of New York City. All the windows are easy to access and the front-wheel drive should be a nice plus on the open road. Plus you can buy two of them in different colors and mess with the minds of your co-workers.

Then there is the Scion xD which is a Yaris on stilts, and the xB which is a Corolla on stilts. With both these models you would get better crash protection than the iQ. However I would say that the best deal on the road for what describing is a late model Ford Flex. I know… don’t want to buy used. Would you consider a Kia Soul?

I’m sure the folks here will have plenty of good recommendations. Any thoughts?

 

 

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88 Comments on “New Or Used? : A Twofer… And One For “The Bossth!”...”


  • avatar
    28-Cars-Later

    I say this with no sarcasm or offense for number one, but San Fran is one of the most expensive and pretentious cities in the world, and you want to shuffle clients to million dollar hole-in-the-wall apartments in a $13,000 car? I agree with Steve on the Q45 choice, but I suggest leasing something flashy/pretentious with your money and deduct the costs against your taxes as I believe you can do as a RE agent.

    • 0 avatar
      philipbarrett

      San Francisco realtor car is an interesting question, you’ve got to look smart but also environmentally sensitive. Sorry, but it’s Prius, nothing else will really fit the ethos & pathos. You smile sweetly at the clients and make no apologies.

      • 0 avatar
        28-Cars-Later

        No disagreement here, but can a used Prius be had for 13K?

        • 0 avatar
          KixStart

          No, the Infiniti would be a lot less expensive.

          I think we must defer to the wisdom of the Real Estate agent asking the question. We can presume she has thought about the problem and decided “nice” beats “green halo” when showing houses.

          I own a Prius but I can certainly still appreciate a luxurious or simply very nice car.

          • 0 avatar
            28-Cars-Later

            That’s a good point, nice beats green and I would think its more practical moving people around in a large sedan vs the smaller Prius hatch.

          • 0 avatar
            APaGttH

            Buy the Infiniti and slap a hybrid sticker on it. The smug masses of San Fran won’t know the difference.

            Problem solved.

          • 0 avatar
            28-Cars-Later

            Good point APaGttH. Put a “Darwin” fish next to it for good measure.

        • 0 avatar
          greaseyknight

          Yes they have, the guys at Hot Rod/Roadkill found one cheap enough to blow the engine and crush with a tank.

          As much as I hate them, I have to agree that a Prius would work well. Not sure about rear seat leg room, but it would portray the correct image in SanFran

        • 0 avatar
          Conslaw

          A Prius could be had for $13,000 but it would have over 100,000 miles (which to be fair is like 50,000 miles on a non-Prius). Maybe better would be a used Camry or Fusion Hybrid – still get a hybrid cachet, but the passenger compartment is more realtor-traditional.

      • 0 avatar
        Ryoku75

        I would think that Teslas, Volts, and Leafs would be the thing for Francisco frantics.

        Frankly if I had the cash to live there, I’d run the rattiest, smoggiest pre-70 Detroit Yacht I could get my hands on, and if my agents protested I’d tell them “at least it has a roof”.

        But then again I’m just crazy.

    • 0 avatar
      CoreyDL

      I think it must be a starter RE agent, if she’s only got that much money. And lots of short, hilly trips in that big V8 (on premium, in CA no less) are going to be killer. The Q45 doesn’t exude any more luxury than an RX might, which will be practical, offer better visibility, more attainable servicing levels, and better mileage.

      I won’t mention the “Q45 = too hard to park” like the dude below, because that’s just stupid.

      • 0 avatar
        28-Cars-Later

        I don’t know enough about Infiniti to make a quality/reliability judgement, but personally I’m someone who doesn’t feel comfortable without a cash reserve for unexpected expenses. So if my absolute budget is $13K, and the car retail/private party runs me $10K, I’ve only got a $3K repair budget. All it takes its a blown transmission and your several grand at the dealer in repairs to perhaps your only car. Something like this combined a dry sales spell and you’re living hand to mouth in one of the most expensive cities there is, leasing and dealer loaner redundancy make more sense in my mind.

        • 0 avatar
          CoreyDL

          That model Q was pretty reliable, as long as you get your oil changed on the dot at 3k miles, every time.

          Most likely at that age you’ll have cracked/dry leather issues though. And it’s hard to find them where people haven’t scraped them at the corners because they’re so large with no sensors/camera etc. <Another factor in tight city parking which says no Q for her.

    • 0 avatar
      twotone

      I’d add a gently used Cadillac CTS to the list.

    • 0 avatar
      matador

      Q45?! Really?

      You need something “chic”, “modern”, and makes you look wealthier than you are. That would mean Audi, BMW, or Mercedes (Unless you want a Jaguar in the shop).

      Any one of these cars screams “successful”. Personally, I’d go for an A6 (I own an 01). Anything from the German Big Three Luxury brands will scream success, though.

      If it has to be Japanese, get a Lexus RX. Useful, nice, and practical. Plus, every Realtor out here seems to have one.

      • 0 avatar
        jd418197

        An ’01 A6 doesn’t scream “successful” to me . . . what it does scream isn’t very positive. Just me.

        • 0 avatar
          28-Cars-Later

          I had similar thoughts. I honestly cannot think of many new cars which seriously impress me in the “success” manner.

          • 0 avatar
            jd418197

            I may overrate it, but cleanliness says a lot to me when it comes to a “success” look. If your car is filthy it looks bad, even if it’s an S65 AMG. A cleaned up Focus – windows and wheels included – looks sharp. I feel like a guy who I wouldn’t hire when I drive around with a filthy car, which I’m guilty of too often for my own liking.

          • 0 avatar
            CoreyDL

            Not an old A6 with likely check engine light aglow. Ha.

    • 0 avatar
      Toad

      The Realtor vehicle choice depends somewhat on the clientele; it you are showing downtown apartments/condos where parking is tight and movement is slow the Prius makes more sense than a big car. Those clients will defiantly understand and appreciate a Prius. Your fuel expenses will also be very low, and you will look green & practical instead of poor & cheap.

      If you are out showing single family houses in the burbs that is a different situation; a bigger, nicer car might make more sense. But if you only have $13k to spend on a car do you have the funds to feed and maintain a luxury/near lux car?

      All in all the Prius makes more sense.

    • 0 avatar
      Jeff Weimer

      2007 Camry hybrid or even 2006 Highlander hybrid. Both can be found for 13K or less and will fit with the agent’s market and marketing needs.

  • avatar
    philipbarrett

    #2 needs to spend the money on the RSX. There is no performance upgrade that will make you smile at every speed like great suspension & good tires.

  • avatar
    slance66

    I agree with 28-Cars on SF, and what real estate agent can only spend $13k? Parking is also scarce however, so I think a Q45 will lead to clients walking several blocks. Suggest something more like an E90 328i, or perhaps an older Audi Q5 or Lexus RX. Better mileage too.

    #2 shouldn’t do either thing, or hasn’t explained what’s wrong with the RDX now. Is he looking for a track day car or something?

    #3 Scion? On ice? I’d go for a CRV.

  • avatar
    Featherston

    “Every car I have ever owned tends to fog up whenever I drive it in the middle of the night; regardless of how strong the defrost is.”

    It sounds like Baba Booey isn’t using his HVAC correctly. He needs to switch his settings to (a) outside air rather than recirculate and (b) A/C on rather than off. Judging by the number of cars I see driving around with their windows cracked open in January, I think a lot of people don’t know this.

    • 0 avatar
      KixStart

      I recently explained this problem to my 30 year old son. I happened to borrow his car on a cold day, was mystified to find things fogging up and realized he had the recirulate engaged. It’s amazing what people don’t know.

    • 0 avatar
      Wheeljack

      Don’t Japanese cars have a “Defrost” button on their HVAC systems like virtually every American car I’ve owned does? Press the Defrost button, and the system uses outside air and cycles the A/C for you to ensure a fog-free motoring experience.

  • avatar
    krhodes1

    On the defogging question – given the cold around lately, I see tons of cars driving around with the windows fogged up. And the one thing I notice is they are predominately, if not exclusively Japanese. What is with that? I have never, ever had any sort of issue keeping the windows of any of my cars defogged no matter what the circumstance. But I have owned exactly two Japanese cars in almost 30 years of driving, and both were nearly 30 years ago. Is it as simple as these people are driving around with the recirculate button pushed in or what?

    For the ultimate in defogging, the Range Rover electrically heated windshield is an amazing thing. Fogged to clear in ~10 seconds flat.

    • 0 avatar
      KixStart

      Once upon a time, Ford offered that. And the one reaason I would consider a Chrysler product a decade or so ago was the heating element at the base of the windshield that helped to prevent ice buildup. Neither offers anything like it today, I don’t know why they don’t.

      • 0 avatar
        CoreyDL

        The Ford thing was only available on certain models (Town Car, maybe Taurus) around 1988-1991. They got rid of it because it was a high cost option which few people selected. There was gold in the windshield.

        • 0 avatar
          krhodes1

          The Rover uses heating elements sort of like a rear window defroster. Except they are MUCH finer, and embedded vertically in the windshield, not on the surface. So you don’t really see them. And they don’t seem to cause issues with GPS and radar detectors the way that the Ford system did.

          Not horrendously expensive, I have seen replacement windshields in the $600 range.

        • 0 avatar
          redmondjp

          The Taurus was one of the first US cars available with an entire heated windshield:

          http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Quickclear

          Other car, such as the Pontiac Bonneville, also offiered this option. On the 1990s Bonnevilles, you can tell which cars had it by the oversized alternator underneath the hood.

          • 0 avatar
            Wheeljack

            Ford products with the InstaClear windshield also called for a much larger battery that was quite expensive even in the aftermarket. Because I’m in the “bigger is better” camp when it comes to electrical components and I have to survive Michigan winters, I upgraded the battery in the Crown Vic I used to own to the optional “InstaClear” spec battery when the old one died. I had to buy a different hold down from the dealer to make it fit, but it was well worth it.

      • 0 avatar
        Tifighter

        Electric heated windshield is an option for the 14 Transit Connect.

    • 0 avatar
      hf_auto

      I wish that Range Rover windshield was optional. I rarely need defogging in Seattle (nor defrost when it’s garage parked) so I never actually used it, but it caused a few problems.

      When I got my first rock chip, I had to try 4 different shops before one agreed to repair it. The others were scared of frying the ECU or damaging the heating element and refused to repair. It was going to be a $1200 replacement. The heating elements also bothered me at night where they caused streaking around light sources.

      That said, it was a fun novelty to show my car friends. “Even the windshield is heated?!?”

      • 0 avatar
        pragmatist

        ” others were scared of frying the ECU ”

        Truly sad where we’ve come. At one time functions had their own switch and own wire. Less fluff, but a damned sight easier to fix.

    • 0 avatar
      Toad

      People with fogged windows usually have the HVAC control set to Recirculate. Recirculate is useful for quickly heating or cooling a car, or if you are in a situation where the outside air is polluted or stinky (such as following an oil burning car).

      Unfortunately, most drivers are not smart enough to operate or adjust HVAC controls as needed so the OEM’s have default settings that don’t allow you to run a defroster/defogger with recirculate on. That way if the drivers windows are fogging on the inside and they turn on the defogger, the AC system will bring in fresh air and run it through the evaporator coil to dehumidify it, clearing the fog. The HVAC engineers figured out that if the inside of the car is foggy the car probably needs fresh air.

      My 1989 Honda would only let you run Recirculate for 20 minutes, then default back to fresh air; it also reset to fresh air every time you started it. Smart, idiot proof design.

      • 0 avatar
        Wheeljack

        In my 2013 Dart, if you press the recirc button with the defroster on, the LED in the switch flashes a few times to let you know you’ve been a bad boy and then it goes out…in other words, it’s impossible to be in recirc with the defroster on. Why everyone else doesn’t do this is beyond me.

    • 0 avatar
      calgarytek

      I removed the AC from my EL so I could fit a K20 in. Bought one of those window cleaning mops from the hardware store and use the RAINX product. I usually re-apply it every three months and it takes a good 30 minutes. Sometimes I get streaks. On the flipside, I can run the heater on max with recirculate in -30 degree weather and it will just slightly fog on the outer edges of the window glass that makes contact with the weather stripping. That’s when I’m crazy to take it out in the winter time.

  • avatar
    sgtyukon

    I don’t know about reader #3, but I have had bad luck using Windex to clean the inside of car windows. When I had a car that outgassed plasticizers from the upholstery, I found that Windex just smeared them around the glass. In my experience it also contributes to window fogging.

    I found that the cheapest windshield wiper fluid from the auto parts store which I pour undiluted into a spray bottle works better on both problems. Of course, running the AC also works much better than running the defroster (or run both, that’s best), even in cold weather to defog windows. The AC helps so much that many cars run it whenever the defroster is on.

    • 0 avatar
      DC Bruce

      In my experience, Windex is the worst product ever for cleaning the inside of car windows. IIRC, there’s something like “Black Ice” window cleaner, which works better, and I’ve also used one or two other car-specific window cleaners with success.

      I think the problem with Windex is that it has soap in it, which leaves a film. The other products, I believe, have some alcohol, which dissolves crud (like outgassed polymers from the plastic interior) and also evaporates.

      • 0 avatar
        Kenmore

        Windex is great if you dilute it by at least 50%. It has always had way too much ammonia in it and strong ammonia *always* leaves a greasy, disgusting and maddening film to chase around. The various odorants of the perfumey versions probably also add their own gakk to the mix.

        I’ve always been astonished that they put too much chemical in their product versus the usual watering-down you’d expect from anything that wasn’t marketed at a higher price as a “concentrate”. Standard Windex is already a concentrate.

        • 0 avatar
          redmondjp

          I used the commercial-style foaming glass cleaner, with newspaper (that’s right, newspaper balled-up, preferably w/o color printing). Haven’t found anything that works better.

          Try it sometime, you’ll like it!

          • 0 avatar
            Kenmore

            Yep, newspaper is amazingly effective and I used to always use it.

            Problem is, we haven’t regularly gotten a newspaper for probably 15 years.

    • 0 avatar
      DC Bruce

      While I like the Q45, it is not as bulletproof as some vintage Toyota/Lexus products, and it’s pretty thirsty. I would suggest a used RX300. They have very nice interiors and, being SUVs, are easier to enter and exit. They also are less thirsty than the Q. Two of my daughters have “vintage” RX’s and they both love ‘em and have had good experiences with them.

      Assuming that the interior and exterior of the RXS is good, the obvious answer is to invest the money in replacing the bushings and other worn suspension bits (along with the shocks, of course). Fast, light, fun: they’re really don’t make ‘em like that any more.

    • 0 avatar
      rpn453

      Yeah, Windex leaves a film. Use rubbing alcohol.

  • avatar
    Tim_Turbo

    For # 3, it’s probably Baa-Baa-Booey’s bad breath causing the windshield to fog!

  • avatar
    Audiofyl

    IMO, if you have the heat on max, also using the air is not helpful. Sure the a/c dries the air but so does the heater. The bad part is when you start the vehicle again after using the a/c and all the removed humidity gets blown back out all over the windows and if it’s cold enough can freeze on the inside. I say heat only in winter.

    • 0 avatar
      KixStart

      Remove the A/C fuse in October, put it back in in May.

    • 0 avatar
      Pinzgauer

      I disagree. The A/C makes quick work of defogging the windshield, even when its extremely cold. Just having heated air is not enough in my experience.

      I just wait until the car has warmed up a bit before turning on the hvac at all.

      • 0 avatar
        redmondjp

        +1 for several reasons

        1) The A/C dehumidifies the air in the winter which allows the windows to clear much faster.

        2) Year-round use of the A/C system contributes to a longer system life, as it keeps the oil circulating through the system and extends the compressor shaft seal life. Not using your A/C for half the year is the worst thing you can do to it.

      • 0 avatar
        KixStart

        My experience has been that it doesn’t help at below freezing temps. Maybe our systems are somewhat different in terms of heat output vs A/C capacity.

  • avatar
    AlfaRomasochist

    Nothing warms up / deices as fast as a regular cab compact pickup. My Ranger makes heat in less than 5 minutes and in about 8 I have to turn the heat down or I start roasting.

    Can you still get a 4×4 4cyl reg cab Taco or Frontier new? That’d fit the bill nicely.

    • 0 avatar
      Wheeljack

      4.0L Wranglers (like my ’06 or ’02) also heat up absurdly fast and are delivering reasonable heat from the vents in just a few minutes. The best I ever experienced though was the 2.8L diesel in the Jeep Liberty circa ’05/’06. This engine had a small “pump” with viscous fluid in it through which the coolant flowed. The friction of the viscous fluid generated heat that was transferred into the coolant. I literally was getting hot air within 1 mile from my home on a cold start during the winter.

  • avatar
    TybeeJim

    #1 Chrysler minivan -used
    #2 new Audi S3 when it gets here
    #3 a goat

  • avatar
    npbheights

    +1 on the used Town and Country. With leather it is better than a limo. I would burn a DVD video of all my listings and play them on a loop on the TVs in the back. If I was a realtor

    • 0 avatar
      Wheeljack

      +1

      Awesome idea. Plus, people don’t seem to make any judgements about success or station with a minivan as long as it’s clean and well kept.

    • 0 avatar
      Scoutdude

      Yup a minivan is great with the DVD to show preview pictures and other details while you are en route. It is also good if you are working with a family and younger kids so you can play some Sponge Bob through the head phones. A 7 passenger compact or mid size S/CUV could be considered a little more “upscale” though.

  • avatar
    The Heisenberg Cartel

    Realtor = first gen x5 or x3
    Second guy = suspension and tires
    Third guy = Fiat 500L

  • avatar
    exit

    #1 is easy, Town Car or Grand Marquis. Or find a $10k Hybrid and buy a warranty, won’t matter if it looks cheap, beat up, or uncomfortable, the San Francisco clientele will appreciate the green aspect.

    #2 too many good choices, need more info about the driver.

    #3 …AWD Nissan Juke?

    • 0 avatar
      KixStart

      Nothing says “hip and happenin’” quite like a 30 year old design that’s going to be hard to park, has mediocre interior room and is going to use a ton of gas.

    • 0 avatar
      28-Cars-Later

      I agree with KixStart awesome or not a RE agent cannot afford to be too bold. A big true American car is likely to not go over well with the locals.

    • 0 avatar
      masrapida

      As one of your average “smug, pretentious” SF residents, I’d suggest the RE avoid anything too flashy. An Accord, or a Camry and yeah, unfortunately, probably better received with a hybrid label. Something practical and business-like.

    • 0 avatar
      kingofgix

      “Or find a 10k hybrid and buy a warranty”

      Why buy a warranty with a hybrid and not the non-hybrids? Hybrid that you can by for 10k (Prius, Civic) are among the most reliable cars ever made.

      A Prius would probable be the best choice for the SF RE agent. Plenty of backseat legroom, easy to park, and well suited to City driving.

      • 0 avatar
        exit

        The warranty is because of the mileage that is bound to be on a hybrid at that price point and and increased repair cost of an import hybrid over a low mile, low tech domestic car like the Grand Marquis.

        The Grand Marquis has a huge trunk for signs, huge back seat for clients, they look nice but not flashy and they depreciate like crazy so you can pick up a very low mile example well within the price point.

        Who says it has to be hip and happening? What is the demographic of a San Francisco real estate buyer vs other residents? Maybe that overseas investor will appreciate being chauffeured in a big comfy car.

        If you have a client that is very concerned with being green, the agent still has the option to suggest they take public transportation or get a Prius zip car. What’s more green than car sharing?

  • avatar
    roadscholar

    #3: Two-door Jeep Wrangler.

  • avatar
    Dr. Kenneth Noisewater

    #1 might want to go Lexus hybrid for a few dollars more, if she wants to impress PC SFers, I don’t know if any of those are available in her price range..

    #2: Why take on a payment if you don’t have to? OTOH if you’re looking down the barrel of some bigger out-of-warranty servicing in the near future…

    #3: I _really_ would like to recommend the Volt, even if it would become grist for der Stern Gang. Its defrost is pretty great (and my morning commute is also in darkness from October to February), its heater + heated seats works well for front-seat passengers, and it has remote starting without the threat of CO poisoning. It’s basically the ultimate single-car commute-mobile on the market currently.

    However, the Volt is disqualified because of its gigantic, visibility-killing pillars all around. A-pillar? Super fat. B-pillar? Super wide. C-pillar? Flabadocious. And don’t forget the spoiler splitting the rear window!

    That’s a bloody f–king shame. I think Gary would actually do quite well with the i3, but it’s out of his price range alas. Maybe he could get it talked up on the show and get a freebie?

    ps: if BBB lives on Long Island, the i3 and other EVs (and CARB Volts) can drive on the LIE HOV lane solo, though his commute may be earlier than the restriction time starts.

    • 0 avatar
      Avatar77

      Volt owner here – agree on the pillars being a bit thick. Made me think, what about a Cruze? A-pillars dont seem quite as obnoxious and it doesn’t have the view-killing hatch/spoiler. Small, FWD, good mileage. Worth considering.

  • avatar
    jd418197

    I haven’t seen it mentioned, but what about an early-model VW CC, low miles in a “classy” color like black? My dad drives one and it looks like a more expensive ride than it really is. Car shopping with him over the holidays he was offered $13k on a trade-in (first offer, 58k on his CC). I sort of think of it as one of the cars that kick-started the 4-door coupe revival in the US. He gets a lot of compliments, and it’s been very reliable, although pops isn’t driving it too hard I’m sure.

  • avatar
    Stumpaster

    RE agent is essentially a taxi driver. Need big room in the back. Need green, not V8 around those hills. Rich people will not be impressed by used luxury car – they know you bought it used. That indicates inherent dishonesty to yourself. Lease Prius V new. Nobody will judge you for that.

    • 0 avatar
      myheadhertz

      Agree. Prius or as someone mentioned, Grand Caravan. If some elitist snob rolls their eyes on seeing the Prius or Caravan, just tell them ‘the Range Rover is in the shop’. The snob will understand.

  • avatar
    smartascii

    For the NYC commuter, I would suggest a CPO xDrive BMW. 100k warranty, near-instant heat, and the xDrive system is pretty astonishingly good at dealing with snow and ice. As an added benefit, most BMW models offer a heated steering wheel as an option, which is pretty great when it’s minus stupid degrees out there. Avoid the turbos and direct injection models, and it should probably run for quite a while.

  • avatar
    mnm4ever

    #1 — yeah, nothing says “success” like an ancient obscure ugly Japanese luxury car. Sorry, no. Maybe a Lexus LS400 if she can find one, they age much much better. Really she should find the newest cleanest and most boring American sedan on the lot, Impala, Malibu, Fusion, Taurus, 300, etc. She isn’t going to make an impression with $13k so she’s best with something clean and new and utterly forgettable.

    #2 — Of course fix the RSX.

    #3 — Jeep Wrangler would be perfect. And learn how to use your HVAC system and save yourself some headache.

  • avatar
    anti121hero

    For thirty grand holy shit. Buy a box chevy caprice and completely 100% redo it in and out, new motor insides, aftermarket remote start and stereo and some great tires. Absolute beast in the snow, I’ve even seen em go offroading. Quick to warm, flat windows, great handling in snow or not, reliable as a frickin boulder, easy to work on. For that price you could have one brand new, I could care less if the looks scream 80s, it’s a classic design that people still appreciate.

  • avatar
    HerrKaLeun

    I don’t get the part that you need a fancy car to impress clients. If you are a bad Realtor, you need to pretend to be successful?

    What is needed a clean, rust-free well kept car that is large enough to haul the people relatively comfortably. If you have a practical car, you show you are a practically thinking Realtor. i assume her clients are normal people, assuming her $13K budget. this may be different when you sell $3mio mansions, but those Realtors have more budget.

    A minivan may work well since people can get in and out easily, a Prius would be good, also for operating cost. Any other good brand of vehicle in between would be suitable.

    If a Realtor in SF only has $13K car budget, she doesn’t have money to fuel up or repair a fancy luxury car.

    when i see a sales person with expensive car i think “I’m paying for this car and he uses my money not to deliver a good product, but to buy bling”

  • avatar
    Lorenzo

    For the realtor, first choice is leasing, and if a used car is chosen, put aside some money for a professional detailing.

    The RSX owner should keep what he has and invest in the upgrades. It doesn’t get much better than what he’s got, and he’s far from approaching the end of its useful life.

    Baba Booey should not blow $30,000 on a car in the rust belt. There are plenty of reliable throw-away cars available for much less. Plan on keeping the car only through the warranty period and then getting another throw-away.

  • avatar
    olddavid

    I have had nothing but good luck with Nissan engineering. Their products are built with care and seem to be home wrench friendly. However, I haven’t owned anything newer than a 1987 300ZX, so the sample for my opinion is skewed and possibly irrelevant. I drove a 95 Q45 for a two week span while a friend was overseas and really enjoyed the feel and manners. And, no one can say the styling is derivative. I am always in the camp of keeping a beloved machine in the family, so the RSX advice is echoed here. As to the defroster challenged, may I suggest a ragtop? That way the temp is always equalized, and seeing is never a problem. Get a good Langlitz jacket and some goggles, and presto – no more difficult windshields. Gloves will be mandatory.


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