1. Teslas Fate

    OP Teslas Fate Just a X Æ A-12
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    Ok guys being that I’ll be 16 in close to 2 months I starting to think about cars. I was originally thinking about a Miata as suggested by Jeremiah Burton of Donut Media. But they’re so inflated in price and I see those more as project cars for fun. I would like to learn manual but I don’t want to daily a manual vehicle. So I like help with possible first car ideas. Only stipulation is that I live in the US.
     
  2. wiindsurf

    wiindsurf Advanced Member
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    A Honda CRX Del Sol or an S2000 are cool cars along those lines...
     
  3. FAST6191

    FAST6191 Techromancer
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    Manual that much of a burden? Default here.

    Anyway budget, insurance budget, repairs budget and your technical aptitude (you can do an awful lot yourself, even more these days with the benefits of the internet, though at the same time more modern stuff also needs more and more fancy computer to do just about anything) or maybe that of your immediate circle (if your uncle is a mechanic and will keep you sorted then yeah). Equally do you want something sporty, able to haul stuff, any kind of offroad options, something able to be camped in, or just able to get you and a few bin bags worth of stuff from A to B?
    I don't need to do state but if you are going to be somewhere salty, somewhere snowy or somewhere with other more extreme conditions we might wish to consider that. Similarly city driving, serious motorway/highway or living on a farm down a dirt track that knackers your suspension going up and down in several times a day?

    Back on the technical thing do you know someone that can assess a vehicle for you and be in your corner? If you are asking this I am assuming you can't but if you have a family friend/relation able to look things over that will dodge a lot of headaches down the road (assuming you even get that far). They might also open up options like car auctions (if you are not a or with a mechanic I would not do them). Also there is a reason car dealerships are known as stealerships, and those specialising in second hand are worse than that. Though I am seeing some places have an actual price on the windscreen stateside these days and this whole kung flu lark is seeing some fairly tumultuous times for the car market (sadly this does mean second hand prices are going to be a bit strange -- demand for new is down, second hand is up, and there are lots of old lease cars also piling up).
    Your area will also change what goes -- I have been around for car buying in a decent chunk of the US and helped in a few others. What you can find locally in LA is rather different to Seattle which is rather different to east of the mountains in the northwest, which is rather different to New Mexico (car theft is also a fairly popular hobby there) which is rather different to Texas which in turn differs massively within itself (oil fields are a fun one) and New York sees an awful lot of people do without a car.
    Finally think long and hard before buying something from a friend/relative. If it is someone that knows their stuff, wants you to have something good and offers a good deal then OK, if it is going to be clueless person to clueless person and you have to sit around the Christmas table with them then better hope it was not a dud. On the other hand if grandma is being shuffled into a home or off this mortal coil then her nice old car she got serviced at the dealer with most of the distance being to bingo once a week then you can get something very nice there. Do note about 95% of mechanics treat their personal vehicles like crap and keep them barely roadworthy so buying your mechanic uncle's old beater might not be the best plan, even if having them with you to look at things would be.

    Diesel or petrol (electric might be a bit much at this point, though some older hybrid stuff could do, though if your budget is it then it is an option, though you might also have to retrofit your house)?

    Will you be becoming a pizza boy or some other delivery type setup? This would mean far more distance and wear on the vehicle which would factor into running and repair costs.

    How long do you plan on keeping it? If it is going to be an earning my own money in two or three years and can get something nicer then that is one thing but if you want to do something now and run it into the ground over the next 8-10 years then that changes thing.
    Equally is it a car for the sake of having a car in case you need one but otherwise you can walk/pedal/public transport around, might you instead consider a motorbike for some purposes or are we back to the farm in the middle of nowhere where a car is a necessity?


    For the most part this then gives you a split between

    Small hatchback car. These can get pretty nippy as well if you want. No chance of moving seriously in one (though if you can live that live then great), camping in one or hauling sheets of wood around. Usually quite cheap to buy, own and repair as well.

    Mid size estate-sedan type thing. Can go sporty but can go basic. Depending upon what you get a decent haulage option and able to camp out of an evening. Price wise go from cheap to hideously expensive.

    Pickup and these days I am also seeing work vans be a thing in the US where they were not so much before (here I know loads with a transit or similar as a daily). Great for hauling and can be converted to do a bit of sleeping as well on nicer nights. Be careful with insurance though as some insurance carriers will not entertain someone as young as you driving one.

    People carrier/minivan. Assuming you are going to get a proper ticket to drive it (some states I see nonsense like can't have more than 2 friends after dark or whatever) never underestimate the storage capacity and ease of use of a vehicle that a suburban housewife used to nip to the shops, do the school run and the like babying it the whole way vs something in the above categories someone got as their first/early car and spent the subsequent next few years ragging around, learning to do j turns/handbrake turns and burnouts in.

    The whole SUV thing seems to be dying off in some ways but there are plenty out there. I don't much like them to crash, repair, cart stuff around in, drive (though some can be fun if you want to have it) or fuel but eh. That said the range is wide from "almost a jeep" to stuff like the ford exploderrer which is more what I would look at in the people carrier thing above even if they brand it a SUV.
     
  4. Goku1992A

    Goku1992A GBAtemp Advanced Maniac
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    The best advice I can give you is have your parents help you finance a car if you are responsible. If you are looking at purchasing a car outright then it's going to be hard because older cars tend to need more maintenance done on them. Lets just say you buy a car for $3000 cash and then your transmission dies then you are out of a car because a transmission can cost up to $1000 for repair. To to mention you are a young driver your car insurance may be around $300.
     
  5. Teslas Fate

    OP Teslas Fate Just a X Æ A-12
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    I live in Illinois in a town near the river but winters (if we get any) can get harsh. With where I'm at in the town a walk or a bike up to our downtown are with all our big businesses would be like 20/30 minutes, but being that I live near one of our states popular cities (Peoria) getting a job there a car would be necessary. Other than that yeah gas would be best and I'd like to be able to haul some stuff so maybe a hatchback. Also being near 5 local colleges all about ~45 minutes away so I see a car being a viable option.
     
  6. DinohScene

    DinohScene hail p1ngpong
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    I'd honestly say get any car below a grand.
    It's just for learning how to drive anyway.
     
  7. Tom Bombadildo

    Tom Bombadildo Dick, With Balls
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    What Dinoh said, don't go for anything expensive or fancy for your first vehicle that you'll probably crash (whether through your fault or someone else's)/that will be expensive to maintain. Buy a cheapo, half decent vehicle that has plenty of easily found spare parts so you can teach yourself to repair common, general car issues. Don't go for a complete junker, but don't grab some "expensive" Miata either, that'd be silly unless you're just rolling in the dough and can afford to throw away a bunch of cash.

    My first car was a 1998 Toyota Camry, total PoS but that thing lasted forever and any issue it had was easily, and cheaply, fixed (until my sister took over driving it for a couple months and let the thing run with almost no oil so she completely seized the engine).
     
  8. PizzaBitez

    PizzaBitez Shadow Clone Justu.
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    Get a bmw. You wont regert it
     
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  9. FAST6191

    FAST6191 Techromancer
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    Expensive nonstandard parts (especially in the US), less than stellar reliability (especially among the prices available for first cars), suspect performance (never mind if they are in a snowy place and get a rear wheel drive version) and remarkably annoying to fit parts to when you do want to.
    ...
    We try to give good advice in these threads. If you have money to burn on repairs and fuel then you can get something pretty comfortable that has something there when you push the pedal down and throw it into a corner, and as such they justifiably have their fans.

    As a first car that someone might want to do a bit of work on themselves, pay for fuel for, insure themselves and actually use... there are worse but that is only because there are brands that lean even more into that (or have tricked the place they are in into believing they are that -- most of the typically exclusive to America car companies (so basically everything that isn't Ford) have tricked Europe into thinking they are premium vehicles despite all evidence to the contrary, and when in America I laugh every time someone rolls up in a basic Jaguar or Range Rover thinking they got themselves a fancy vehicle, never mind stuff like the modern Bentleys).
     
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