Wife's friend looking for a new (used) SUV.

Big E

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My wife's friend is looking to replace her 2006 Explorer with 230k on it. It has been requiring more repairs lately and will not pass smog now without a new cat.

Her budget is 20K out the door. Something under 100k miles. She would like another Explorer but they seem to be out of the budget.

She wants something that will last a long time and will be reliable.

She was looking at a 2019 Escape with a 1.5L Ecoboost (29k miles) at a local dealer. I recommended she not buy that one.

I recommended looking for a Toyota or Mazda. I seem to see mixed reviews on Hondas.

Suggestions anyone?
 
You won't get a Toyota or Honda for under 20K unless its 8 years old. If I had to buy something with that budget then I would look for a used CR-V or Rav4 previous gen - both were simple and reliable - which is why they hold their price. There smaller than what she is driving.

A few years ago you could have bought a new one of those for $25K OTD. Ahh memories.

If she can wait 6 months - used prices keep falling, and new car inventory is catching up - which will also push used car prices down. How much would it cost to fix her cat and would she get another 6 months that way? Might be worth it.
 
at that pricea Mazda CX5
Can't go wrong there, and Mazda doesn't fetch quite the price premium that Honda/Toyota goes for. Escapes are very hit or miss in that era. A guy I work with is presently putting $5K into a new engine into his 2017 2.0L before 100K, cracked block between two cylinders. From what I understand, it's not uncommon.
 
Why does she want an SUV? Upright seating? Towing capacity? Off-road capability? Interior space? Height and visibility?

You can accomplish most of those with a less expensive and better value CUV.
 
I don’t think the Ford would be a bad option. My grandpa and aunt both have the escape with ecoboost and they’ve both been rock solid.
 
Why does she want an SUV? Upright seating? Towing capacity? Off-road capability? Interior space? Height and visibility?

You can accomplish most of those with a less expensive and better value CUV.
SUV, CUV are fine. She does not want a car/sedan.
 
The 1.6 is no better from what I understand, the 2.0 is fine?
In my world 4 cyl Fords go 2.5, 2.0, 1.6 and last the 1.5 which is not even on the table. JMO

That said we’ve got 2 of the 1.6s in the immediate family both have been reliable both are approaching 140k. One has a coolant leak and is needing a part my son’s mechanic is having difficulty getting. Covid? I dunno.
 
My son has a '16 Fusion with the 1.5. He is coming up on 80k and so far no issues. I recommended he trade it in sooner than later.

My '08 Altima with 2.5L and CVT has 175k and no engine or trans issues. Still not going to recommend a Nissan w/cvt though.
 
She just sent my wife pics of a 2015 Expedition with a 5.4, and a 2016 Explorer with a 3.5 na.

Told her the Expedition is way to big, bad gas mileage, and probably problematic.

The Explorer has 100k on it, so right in that "water pump failure" time.
 
UPDATE: She bought a 2019 RAV4. 20K miles on it. I don't know what she paid.

At least she listened to advice.

Thanks for the input all.
 
The 1.6 is no better from what I understand, the 2.0 is fine?

They're better but not all fine - just had a new long block put in my 2018 Escape with the 2.0 due to coolant intrusion.

The pre-2016 2.0 is an older closed deck design and pretty sold, the post-2020 2.0 is still open deck but revised to fix the issues with the 2017-2019 models
 
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