Finding my first car

Mukky

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Gonna be saving up for a used car soon (don't have anything particular in mind, just getting my cash up so I can jump on something), never bought a used car before, any advice? Things I should be looking for/looking to avoid?

For reference, I'm in Australia if that matters
 
I don't know if this applies to their Aussie branch as well, but going from American experience: dodge Ford. My experience with them has been pretty miserable, consistently.
 
The general rule of thumb is to avoid used German/American makes and go for Japanese manufacturers. Any of their long-running models like the Civic, Accord, Corolla, or Camry are usually able to outlast the planet.

Besides that, I'm not sure how vehicle titling works in Australia but try to avoid salvaged cars (totaled cars that were repaired) or any cars that say they have water damage. Salvage cars and water damage cars are super cheap and can be good cars to buy in certain situations, but if it's your first/only car then it might give you a lot of problems.
 
I don't know if this applies to their Aussie branch as well, but going from American experience: dodge Ford. My experience with them has been pretty miserable, consistently.
I will add, Ford Australia is a whole different company than Ford in the US, you can still get US and UK Fords here, but generally the Australian models (Falcon/Fairlane/Territory) are pretty reliable since they were built for rough environments. the only real issues are general old car stuff, shame they don't make them here anymore.

like my Falcon was sitting out behind a factory for 3 - 4 years at like 260,000km before I bought it, and essentially all we did to get it roadworthy was tires, front struts + bushes. now it's at 300,700km and still drives smooth.

ofc if you want to less maintenance, pay a little extra and get a car that hasn't been sitting around doing nothing, and has a more looked after history, my car was rough when we bought it, but I virtually got it for free lmao.
 
also if for looking for cars, I'd look for something that's easy to find parts for and is easy to do maintenance on. we have a shit ton of Japanese cars here which share platforms/parts that were mass-produced, the Toyota Celica's are little FWD hatchbacks and shares a TON of parts with the Corolla platform iirc? so no issues finding parts, and they're pretty reliable from what I've heard. the real problem is, since they're old, you'd probably have to do some maintenance to get one up to rwc.

I would recommend Falcons and Commodores and stuff, but most of them 2000's and earlier are most likely thrashed and/or neglected by previous owners. I have no idea how reliable Holden's are lol, they shared a lot more in common with GM, and early 2000's GM is uh, not the greatest lol.

but honestly, just get anything that's just easy to source parts for, and has a smaller i4 engine or whatever, which here is mostly Japanese cars and the Mitsubishi Magna, which is Australian made somehow, and I have yet to see a Magna in good working condition.

(but tbh I would take what I say with a grain of salt LMAO, I just know this from hearing lots of other talk and from what I've seen with cars people have owned/worked on)
 
Thanks for all the advice!

Still not sure what I'm gonna jump on, but this'll help point me in the right direction.

For some extra info, this future car won't be getting constant use, and I tend to walk and use PT everywhere, but it'll help when it comes to getting to/from work and maybe seeing the parents sometimes.
 
Looking at a Ford Laser that one of my friends relatives is looking to pass on, serviced recently just missing rego
 
also if for looking for cars, I'd look for something that's easy to find parts for and is easy to do maintenance on. we have a shit ton of Japanese cars here which share platforms/parts that were mass-produced, the Toyota Celica's are little FWD hatchbacks and shares a TON of parts with the Corolla platform iirc? so no issues finding parts, and they're pretty reliable from what I've heard. the real problem is, since they're old, you'd probably have to do some maintenance to get one up to rwc.

hearing this gets me a bit intrigued to ask about something myself:
i've never owned a car. yet to get a license, hoping to change that this summer/year. know jack squat about cars at that! and i figure if i'm going to make myself road legal at some point, i probably should start caring...

so having watched a recent Garbage Time video where he talks about cars he doesn't like, he scrolled past some stuff about '86 Toyota Supras and Celicas... and i thought, wow, i really like the look of these things! however, lacking the necessary knowledge to make a decision about cars that i feel 100% confident in, i think it's worth asking some people here about if something like an '86 Supra or Celica is a good idea. (better yet, if i should even care about what looks nice and just pick a modern car that works)
 
if something like an '86 Supra or Celica is a good idea.
You'll want to learn on something modern. My sincere recommendation would be to get anything after 2005-6 with automatic transmission, but also to note that even if whatever you learn to drive on has a backup camera, learn how to back up with your mirrors regardless in case you ever end up with a model that doesn't have one. Whatever maneuverability test you're required to take for a license (this differs by state, I'm sure) will be easiest with something modern. Speaking from personal experience here, newer power steering systems are REALLY nice for that lol.

After you get the license - go ham. I drive an '07 Ford Fusion and right now late aughts models are in an ok state pricewise + have most modern safety & control features you want... but the only big concern I would say is that age really does come for everything regardless of mileage. With anything beyond that you'll start to see the hands of time creep up HARD if it wasn't taken care of properly.
 
You'll want to learn on something modern. My sincere recommendation would be to get anything after 2005-6 with automatic transmission, but also to note that even if whatever you learn to drive on has a backup camera, learn how to back up with your mirrors regardless in case you ever end up with a model that doesn't have one. Whatever maneuverability test you're required to take for a license (this differs by state, I'm sure) will be easiest with something modern. Speaking from personal experience here, newer power steering systems are REALLY nice for that lol.

After you get the license - go ham. I drive an '07 Ford Fusion and right now late aughts models are in an ok state pricewise + have most modern safety & control features you want... but the only big concern I would say is that age really does come for everything regardless of mileage. With anything beyond that you'll start to see the hands of time creep up HARD if it wasn't taken care of properly.
thank you! yeah, it seemed just from doing a few minutes of scouting that the price of '86 C/S's are around the $20k mark which seems high in comparison to the 2005-6 options, but low compared to anything that came out recently -- overall, pretty good? i agree though, makes sense to get my hands on something simple first just to get a hang of everything
 
hearing this gets me a bit intrigued to ask about something myself:
i've never owned a car. yet to get a license, hoping to change that this summer/year. know jack squat about cars at that! and i figure if i'm going to make myself road legal at some point, i probably should start caring...

so having watched a recent Garbage Time video where he talks about cars he doesn't like, he scrolled past some stuff about '86 Toyota Supras and Celicas... and i thought, wow, i really like the look of these things! however, lacking the necessary knowledge to make a decision about cars that i feel 100% confident in, i think it's worth asking some people here about if something like an '86 Supra or Celica is a good idea. (better yet, if i should even care about what looks nice and just pick a modern car that works)
those Supras are amazing cars, but nowadays they've gotten crazy expensive due to being hyped up for being great cars. they're also approaching 50 years old so maintenance wouldn't be fun and they'd be more of a "project car" imo.

however the later 90s Celicas are still affordable, they're FWD so they're very easy to drive, and they're based on the Corolla platform so they're easy to repair and run. I was very very close to getting a mk6 Celica until I ran into my current car lol.
 
those Supras are amazing cars, but nowadays they've gotten crazy expensive due to being hyped up for being great cars. they're also approaching 50 years old so maintenance wouldn't be fun and they'd be more of a "project car" imo.

however the later 90s Celicas are still affordable, they're FWD so they're very easy to drive, and they're based on the Corolla platform so they're easy to repair and run. I was very very close to getting a mk6 Celica until I ran into my current car lol.
ahh, i see! that's pretty useful to know, i'll surely have to overcome my obsession for vintage stuff lol
 
yeah, honestly for a car to learn in/daily drive, it's hard to go wrong with a 4 cylinder automatic, they're easy to drive, affordable and fuel efficient. (then you get a vintage car afterwards as the project to keep in your garage lmao)
 
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