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Discussion Starter #1
Hey,

My name's Jeff, I'm a high school student who, up until recently, was converting a '77 Porsche 924 to electric power.

That story ended, the in-progress conversion project was passed on to someone who would be more able to complete it, but damn if I still don't need a car.

I have strong prospects of getting a '94 Caddy Deville from my grandmother, which she'd cover insurance on. That would translate to me paying for nothing except gas...which is a regrettable 13 MPG of premium. While this would be FAR more economical than buying my own car and insuring it, I just don't feel right wasting that much fuel, and pumping out massive amounts of emissions.

I sort of feel like the only way I can justify exhausting my small but hard-earned bank account is if I get a vehicle that undercuts that terrible consumption by a big margin, and the Insight does that. I know a good deal of the ups and downs of hybrids from my time in the EV circuit, and I’ve read through a lot of posts on this forum. I can honestly say I’m excited at the prospect of owning an Insight of my own. Unfortunately, I've been able to find only TWO within 100 miles of me, one for 13k, the other for 9k, and both outside of my price range.

I'm located in Central MA. Anyone know of some cars for sale around here? And do you think I should spend my money on a car of my own, or just accept the burden of the Cadillac and save it for expenditure during college?

Thanks for your aid and advice!

-Jeff
 

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Under 9K? Hmmm, maybe, but your only chance at finding at that price would be to look for a high mileage one on eBay (I'm talking in the 100K mile range for that price).
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Philosophy said:
I got my 00 with 50k miles for a little over 8k. It can be done.

-Phil
That's exactly what I'm looking for!

So what should I do to find one? Cruise random dealerships? Autotrader, Cars.com and Craigslist haven't yeilded anything...unless I can negociate down the 9k one to 8k...

-Jeff
 

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If you're not afraid of a project, and don't mind cosmetic issues, you might find a salvage vehicle on ebay for cheap. I went this route, took a small risk, but don't regret it a bit!
 

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I bought my '01 with 57k miles for $8700 from the original owner out of a newspaper ad. But at the time I lived in a backwater where the car wasn't getting much interest and the seller didn't advertise widely. In short, that may be your best bet to find a cheap car, but it will take a while. Keep an eye on your local want ads, especially any free autotrader publications. Since you're clued into Craigslist, you must be in a fairly large metro area, so you may get lucky. It never hurts to leave notes on cars when you see them. That's how I got a good deal on my Benz. The car wasn't listed for sale, but the seller was ready to part with the car. You never know when or why someone might be ready to sell.

All that aside, I have to suggest that at your stage in life, it might not be a good time to be pouring all your money into a car. Maybe you should take that free "grandma car", as long as it's been well-maintained. Assuage your guilt by driving it as little as possible, keeping it in good tune, and spend your time and money on learning and having fun in college. Then make your automotive statement when you get out of college and have the resources to buy what you want.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Skimmer said:
All that aside, I have to suggest that at your stage in life, it might not be a good time to be pouring all your money into a car. Maybe you should take that free "grandma car", as long as it's been well-maintained. Assuage your guilt by driving it as little as possible, keeping it in good tune, and spend your time and money on learning and having fun in college. Then make your automotive statement when you get out of college and have the resources to buy what you want.
Well said. I think that pretty much has convinced me to give up my car aspirations - for now. Thanks for all your help guys, and rock on. Hybrids are excellent and you've all more than earned my respect for choosing to purchase them!

-Jeff
 

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Re: Where/How can I find a Honda Insight? And should I both

Fuzzbeaner said:
I have strong prospects of getting a '94 Caddy Deville from my grandmother, which she'd cover insurance on. That would translate to me paying for nothing except gas...which is a regrettable 13 MPG of premium. While this would be FAR more economical than buying my own car and insuring it, I just don't feel right wasting that much fuel, and pumping out massive amounts of emissions.
You could search for xcel's "insightful" posts on how to maximize economy on "standard" cars. I looked at http://www.fueleconomy.gov for the Cad and it showed an EPA rating of 16 & 26.
Driving habits can alter fuel consumption a lot.

Last April I purchased my 2000 Insight in excellent condition with 72000 miles. Asking price was $9000 , negotiated purchase price was $7500 from an individual.
 

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If you get the Caddy, buy a shop manual for it and make sure all the maintenance is up to date. Also, check the auto section of used book stores (or the library) for titles on fuel economy. There are a couple handy pocket-sized books on the subject that were published back in the 80s and make for good reading. There's a lot of stuff you can do to the Caddy to make it more frugal: synthetic oil, higher psi in the tires, aerodynamic mods, etc. All this will build onto your knowledge base for when you're ready to buy that hybrid!
 

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I just bought a 2000 that I found from autotrader.com in Macon, GA. I am very happy with it. I have been researching the Insight for about 6 months and was in the same boat as you. I ended up paying a little more than I wanted, but this car looks like it came off the showroom floor yesterday. 32K miles.
Get your financing together so you can give them the money as soon as you decide. It'll make that part go much easier. There have been some pretty good ebay deals lately. Don't get impatient.

Robert
#2757 Citrus
 
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