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Advice on picking a used MPV
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echoleaf
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PostPosted: Tue Nov 30, 2010 11:09 am    Post subject: Advice on picking a used MPV Reply with quote

I am shopping for an MPV. I had Odysseys & Siennas on the list but knocked them off due to, respectively, transmission problems and cost. My budget is $4-4500 and it looks like I should be able to get a 2000-2002 MPV. Overall I don't think I can go wrong if I can get one in good condition with a clean carfax report (preferably single owner). I'm trying to figure out what year & mileage is a 'sweet' spot.

I know that the engine in the 2002+ model is better - a bit more power, a touch more reliabilityand slightly better highway mileage (according to what I see at edmunds.com). I'd always prefer a car with a bit more oomph and as we're going to be taking an 1800 mile road trip, better gas mileage is plus so I'm really keen on getting a 2002 or 2003.

My main question is this: if the costs are the same, is it better to get an MPV with lower mileage regardless of year? For example, here's what I'm finding locally:

2001 90k $4500 (dealer)
2001 99k $3000
2001 107k $3800
2001 130k $3200
2001 131k $3100 (single owner)
2001 131k $4500
2002 127k $4900
2003 128k $4500 (wholesaler offering 3month powertrain warranty)

What I'm taking away from these and a couple others I checked out:

* It looks like mileage around 100k is less common and it would make sense to get a car with 20% less wear & tear - theoretically. The 99k car above is from Queens, NY and driving constantly in NYC = pothole-a-rama.
* Anything near $3k sounds too good to be true. Getting one for around $4k is most likely.

Do y'all think I should hold out for one with lower mileage? Or go for one in the best condition & cleanest carfax I can find from a single owner? If it's most likely that I'm going to get one with 120-130k, then I imagine newer is better.
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Foolish
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Man of Many Mazdas!
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Location: Chantilly, VA, USA

PostPosted: Wed Dec 15, 2010 9:46 am    Post subject: Re: Advice on picking a used MPV Reply with quote

I'd take low miles over low years. That said, while the 3.0/5-speed MPV's are more powerful and quite nice to drive, the 2.5/4-speed models have generally more reliable transmissions.

Where are you located? I'm going to be selling my 2000 MPV very soon. It's not perfect, but it's cheap! Wink

-Eric
'03.5 Protege5 - Tokico Struts, Eibach Pro-kit Springs, AWR 21mm rear sway, AWR adjustable endlinks, B&M SS, Injen CAI, Wagner Shorty Header
2010 Mazda5, 5-Speed Manual
'00 MPV LX - 3" CAI, P5 Wheels, MSP sub/amp setup in custom box, Tow hitch, 110,000+ miles, SOLD!!
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echoleaf
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PostPosted: Wed Dec 15, 2010 12:48 pm    Post subject: Re: Advice on picking a used MPV Reply with quote

I bought one already - the 2003 with 128k for $4300. While I wanted low miles over low years, the condition of this one was WAY better than any of the others - no rust & obviously well taken care of. The ones with low miles in that price range looked like they'd been put through a lot.

The one I bought was from someone who commuted to NYC from NJ, so the vast majority of the miles were clearly highway. It was also a single owner. I also got good vibes from the seller, the others either turned me off or skeeved me out.

2003 MPV, bought used in 12/10 with 128k miles.
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djeanis
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PostPosted: Mon May 26, 2014 7:54 am    Post subject: Re: Advice on picking a used MPV- valuation Reply with quote

Always check KBB.com…then forget anything it said except the level of conditions and descriptions. Go to Edmunds.com….and find out the real values locally.

All the valuation tools online except edmunds are owned by the car dealer's associations. Edmunds uses only/mainly information from the DMV on taxes paid on purchase value, meaning the actual closing (transaction) prices.

Pay VERY careful attention to "condition". IN any valuation the highest and best condition (highest value car) will be wihtout ANY blemish or damage, never in an accident and in perfect running order in every way. It MUST have full documentation that ALL maintenance has been performed in accordance with manufacturer maintenance schedules, PERIOD.

If the vehicle does not look 100% like a show room brand new car and have all maintenance records it can never be the highest rated vehicle for valuation. This includes dealer cars in my opinion. All dealers throw away all maintenance records when they purchase the vehicle. Therefore it can never be an "excellent condition" because no one knows what was maintained and what was not. If a dealer wishes to create a notarized document that ALL maintenance recrods were examined and EVERY manufacturer scheduled maintenance was performed to date…then maybe.

Read all the valuation tools information on levels of value…poor, fair, good excellent, whatever they use. Remember that KBB states the dealer values are suggested listing prices PRIOR TO negotiation, NOT dealer resale values.

Some rust is allowed by some valuation tools, however never excellent condition and if I remember, only in average condition or lower. Read up on it.

The biggest problem is that the valuation tools do not give examples…so be discerning and inspect well….your job in purchasing is to verify the general condition to know the level of value you should give in offer.

If the party will not move to the proper level of value, then move on. Just like buying property, you never want to pay MORE than value, because you lose money. I have purchased several camrys and avalons …for my father. he has had his totalled several times (while parked!). The Insurance valuations are usually Edmunds or lower …not nearly KBB values.

For actual resale values private and dealer, look to Edmunds…until they sell out to the dealers too(lol).
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stamar
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PostPosted: Sun Jul 27, 2014 4:27 pm    Post subject: Re: Advice on picking a used MPV Reply with quote

the toyota asin automatic transmission is bulletproof
ive bought and sold a lot of cars and they are seriously the only passenger cars and trucks with automatic transmissions that can go 300k

terrible v6 engines. lots of hassle. great 4 cylinder ones

my perfect mini van is the 98 oddyssey. it has the 2.3 liter vtec the only year it has that one. it gets the best gas mileage and all its parts are completely compatible with the accord.

it is just an accord station wagon. and its true the auto trans is fragile but rebuilt ones are in a whole different price range than for the 99 plus oddyssey.
and you can put a manual in it.

but definitely on the used market you will usually find a better deal on mazdas or nissans.
and you can find winstars and ventures for next to nothing.

i got mine for 1000 last week in excellent ' condition' although kbb would call it poor because it needed repair to pass smog.
I was shopping for the aforementioned 98 oddyssey but so are a lot of people

2000 white mazda mpv lx
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Sjackson3289
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PostPosted: Thu Dec 16, 2021 7:10 am    Post subject: Re: Advice on picking a used MPV Reply with quote

Thanks for posting this great full informative, i really enjoyed to read this, keep it up
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