The wife needs a new (used) car

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What kind of space does the car need? an SUV, a minivan, or even a Prius?

If size is not a problem I'd get a Prius and be done with it. If you have cheap charging get a plug in Prius.
 
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My wife has taken a new job that will require her to commute about 18K miles per year in addition all the around town driving she does. I figure 24k miles a year is reasonable estimate of it's annual miles. That means her current car (Ford Expedition) is not going to be a good fit.

What car should I get her? Given the following considerations:
  1. Used, not going to buy anything new
  2. Paying cash
  3. Very reliable
  4. Durable - Will reach very high miles quickly
  5. Excellent fuel economy
  6. I'm a cheapskate :)
The obvious choices might be a Prius. or a Corolla. But what other gems should I look at?
Well I don't know what the story is on car prices in your area. I went through this just at the first of this year. Used car prices are crazy. Low milage decent cars are hard to find. I was looking for about a 2017 Mazda CX5. I found out the price difference was about $3000 between that and a New 2022 Mazda CX5. Which didn't come with any unknown issues and a warranty and 12 miles on it vs 24,000 plus. I paid the extra $3000 and paid cash.
 
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Did the OP get something yet? I’d avoid any Kia/Hyundai models that are under the radar as being easily stolen by a 14 year old. It’s all over the news.
 
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i had a 07 mazda 3 that i took well over 300K with only normal maintenance.
my wifes current 12 civic has just shy of 300K no issue fallowing the maintenance minder. it's about due for new shock and struts. the engine and trans have been great. only complaint was the map lights quit working when you push them.
i would get another civic in a heart beat. she regularly get's 28-32 city, and touches 40 on the highway for longer road trips.
 
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If you want a maximum return on your car in terms of resale value, buy a used Lexus RX350
 
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10k doesn’t buy much used car lately.

I’d consider something like a new Civic LX or Jetta S. Either should do 40ish mpg without much in the way of effort.

If you are absolutely opposed to new agree with looking for a used civic, but concerns those in the 10k range might not be the cream of the crop.
 
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The Chevy HHR might not look like much, but I am happy with my 08' it has seen a lot of miles & still runs like a champ.
 

wlk

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My 1 son has a 98 C230 4cyl gets over 30mpgs on freeway, my other son just bought an 08 slk280 and said he is getting 31.5mpgs on freeway at 65mph on cruise. I used to have an 2016 Jetta Sport 1.8l 5speed manual that got 41mpg on freeway. Now if you want a small suv my wife drives a 05 Honda Element awd w 211k miles and gets 25ish mpgs on freeway.
 
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I think an old Mercedes misses on more than one point on my list. I would prefer something that gets closer to 35 MPG than 25, too. Plus, I've just not had good experiences with German cars compared to Japanese. I'd be more comfortable with an older Buick as well. We don't have the rust issues so that isn't really a consideration.

I see that Automechanic is laughing at the C-Max option.

I've been looking at cars < $10k and just flabbergasted at how little that gets you these days.
A bit confused on your budget? What can you sell the Expedition for ? Are you saying your budget = $10,000 cash plus whatever additional cash you can sell the Expedition for = real budget?
 
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Price range? :unsure:

Besides what you mentioned, there is also the Prius V wagon

Another good option is the C-Max
As a former C-Max owner that does about 19K miles per year. I’d say avoid the C-Max like the plague. They are money pits for higher mileage users. Even as a DIYer, I had to dump approximately $2100 worth of parts and tires into my C-Max over 4Y/77K run.

2 Struts, 2 control arms, both front sway bar end links, 3 ignition coils, one spark plug, 3 fuel injectors, and 2 wheel bearings all went by the 70K mark. It also ate tires until I completely revamped the rear suspension with adjustable control arms (factory rear camber was -2.25 degrees).
 

ripcord

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A bit confused on your budget? What can you sell the Expedition for ? Are you saying your budget = $10,000 cash plus whatever additional cash you can sell the Expedition for = real budget?
I was planning on keeping the Expedition. We've got a couple of teen drivers who have been sharing a car but don't drive a ton of miles, and I prefer to have a spare vehicle around.
 
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$10K does not give you much these days

a friend of mine got '15 Honda Fit yesterday at a local dealership; there is one minor accident on Carfax, with 32K miles on odometer he paid $17K OTD for it
 
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$10K does not give you much these days

a friend of mine got '15 Honda Fit yesterday at a local dealership; there is one minor accident on Carfax, with 32K miles on odometer he paid $17K OTD for it
I might have the opportunity to buy a 16 RDX with 145K for well under 10K. Mechanically, it’s perfect- I’ve done every service on it since new (except for 1 oil change). Cosmetically, it is pretty rough. Decisions, decisions. 🤔
 
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I might have the opportunity to buy a 16 RDX with 145K for well under 10K. Mechanically, it’s perfect- I’ve done every service on it since new (except for 1 oil change). Cosmetically, it is pretty rough. Decisions, decisions. 🤔
For a beater, not bad. But it's got one of them evil timing belts, so I'd avoid.

Oh wait...
 
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