High Mileage 2007 Prius

Discussion in 'Newbie Forum' started by Anana, Oct 30, 2018.

  1. Anana

    Anana New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 30, 2018
    5
    0
    0
    Location:
    Chapel Hill, NC
    Vehicle:
    2007 Prius
    Model:
    II
    Hi All,

    I am a grad student looking to buy my first car and my budget is $4000. I came across a nice family looking to sell their old Prius, and they were willing to come down on the price (originally $4900) to $4000.

    It is a 2007 with no accidents on it's record, and 168,000 miles. Here is a list of things that they have replaced/maintained (from the Craigslist post):
    - Synthetic oil change with Mobile one
    - New Spark plugs
    - Engine air fitler
    - Cabin air filter
    - Headlight restoration with UV clear coat
    - Interior detail
    - Engine coolant replaced
    - Hybrid coolant replaced
    - Transmission fluid replaced
    - Front and rear wipers replaced.
    - 4 relatively new tires (2016)
    - Fairly recent 12v battery (2016)
    - Good brakes
    - No leaks at all
    - New combination meter

    The only thing that they haven't yet done is the hybrid battery, which I hear is the big expense. They said that the battery hasn't shown any signs of degradation (though I'd have a mechanic check it out just to be sure before purchasing, and would purchase a Carfax just to double check their repair list).

    Do you think this is a good buy?
     
  2. Skibob

    Skibob Senior Member

    Joined:
    Sep 14, 2018
    2,882
    1,464
    0
    Location:
    Northern California
    Vehicle:
    2006 Prius
    Model:
    N/A
    If you can’t do repairs yourself you should probably go with a Corrola. The battery could last for years or it could fail next week. You have to be prepared for that. Also a new factory battery is around 2000 dollars to replace, if you do it yourself. You could go aftermarket new from 2k1 Toster for less but it’s still do it yourself.
     
    #2 Skibob, Oct 30, 2018
    Last edited: Oct 30, 2018
  3. sam spade 2

    sam spade 2 Senior Member

    Joined:
    Mar 31, 2018
    4,971
    2,020
    0
    Location:
    USA
    Vehicle:
    2017 Prius c
    Model:
    Four
    Maybe.

    But probably not because at 11 years and 168K miles, it almost certainly will be due for a HV battery soon.
    And the cost of that is between $1,500 and $3,000.

    Most mechanics and even most Toyota shops have no CLUE how to test a hybrid battery to make a guess at it's health.
    Each individual cell has to be measured and that's not a really easy task.

    IF.....that can be done with a scan tool and Toyota software, then it is fairly easy.

    ASK point blank if they know of anything wrong with it......including using oil between changes.
    Most people will "forget" to mention some things but usually won't point blank lie.

    If the HV battery weren't an issue, do you think the car would be worth $6,000.........because that is likely what you will end up paying for it.
     
    Skibob and padroo like this.
  4. padroo

    padroo Senior Member

    Joined:
    Jan 11, 2008
    2,763
    2,234
    13
    Location:
    Chesterton, Indiana Another third world country.
    Vehicle:
    2016 Prius
    Model:
    Four
    How dependent are you on this car? If you need it every day I would pass. No sugar coating here, sorry.
     
    Skibob likes this.
  5. PriusCamper

    PriusCamper Senior Member

    Joined:
    Mar 3, 2012
    5,687
    2,308
    0
    Location:
    Pacific Northwest, USA
    Vehicle:
    2007 Prius
    Model:
    Two
    Looks like a great deal... Perhaps you're maxing out on what you can afford in the moment? If you have a plan to have more money for more repairs in the future, it'll work out well... If it's going to make you broke for a while the risk increases. Sometimes people have warning lights come on week(s) after the purchase.
     
  6. bisco

    bisco cookie crumbler

    Joined:
    May 11, 2005
    91,794
    41,412
    0
    Location:
    boston
    Vehicle:
    2012 Prius Plug-in
    Model:
    Plug-in Base
    agree with the corolla recommendation. much easier to find a mechanic to work on it. do you know any hybrid mechanics?
     
    Skibob likes this.
  7. Anana

    Anana New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 30, 2018
    5
    0
    0
    Location:
    Chapel Hill, NC
    Vehicle:
    2007 Prius
    Model:
    II
    No sugar coating necessary! I would be using this car 1-2x a week for grocery shopping/going hiking. Does that change your answer?
     
  8. Anana

    Anana New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 30, 2018
    5
    0
    0
    Location:
    Chapel Hill, NC
    Vehicle:
    2007 Prius
    Model:
    II
    I know of a local repair shop who does hybrids. That being said, I'm not sold on getting a hybrid. I am really looking for any sort of hatchback/wagon or even small SUV. It seems like in terms of cars that will last a long time, Toyota and Honda are the makes to look at. However, my budget is quite low, so I'm not coming across many options at all -- this Prius is really the first promising option. I could also take out a $2000 loan which would bump me up into a slightly better range of cars. If your budget was $4000, what kind of car would you get (hatchback, wagon, or small SUV)? Or would you get the loan, and then get a better car?

    Not crazy broke, I picked $4000 because it still leaves me a cushion. That being said, if the battery goes, that would make me broke for a while. So perhaps the Prius isn't the way to go. That being said, I'm not sure what other options there are.
     
  9. Al Bundy

    Al Bundy Member

    Joined:
    May 21, 2018
    140
    68
    0
    Location:
    florida
    Vehicle:
    2008 Prius
    Model:
    IV
    just say NO to all 12 year old cars, take your 4000 and find something newer and make small monthly payments... you will have something reliable and build your credit for other purchases like a house.... an old hybrid is a money pit thats why people unload them
     
    Skibob likes this.
  10. egg_salad

    egg_salad Active Member

    Joined:
    Oct 27, 2015
    545
    420
    18
    Location:
    Las Vegas, NV
    Vehicle:
    2008 Prius
    Model:
    Base
    Chapel Hill Craigslist has gobs and gobs of Toyotas in your range that aren't Priuses. Also, lots of Scions. Please buy something that isn't a Prius. If you're stretching your budget at $4k, you can't afford a Prius.
     
    Skibob likes this.
  11. Anana

    Anana New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 30, 2018
    5
    0
    0
    Location:
    Chapel Hill, NC
    Vehicle:
    2007 Prius
    Model:
    II
    I don't see the gobs and gobs (if you filter all Toyotas by under $4000, newer than 2005, and less than 150,000). But I agree. This seems like not the best idea. Will pass on this car and wait for something else to pop up.
     
  12. JimboPalmer

    JimboPalmer Tsar of all the Rushers

    Joined:
    Apr 14, 2009
    12,286
    6,664
    2
    Location:
    Greenwood MS USA
    Vehicle:
    2012 Prius v wagon
    Model:
    Three
    This is our reasoning.
    While the Prius has a good reliability record on average, you are not buying the average, you are buying one example.
    Because the Prius is an 'odd' car, few mechanics, at Toyota or Independent, will actually be able to repair parts. They will replace entire subsystems, and those subsystems are not cheap. (Junk yards and DIY will be cheaper, I am going to use Toyota repair prices.

    $5000 Transaxle - Maintenance is to replace the ATF WS every 100,000 miles. ($110 at my dealer)
    $4000 Inverter - Never jumpstart another car, try not to jumpstart your Prius. (a new 12 battery is at least $150 - $250)
    $3000 Battery - Heat is your enemy, use B mode going down long hills (660 foot drop). Do not tow.
    $2000 Engine - Keep oil in it, change it every 5000 miles

    Any of these repairs will leave you stranded as your budget is lower than that.

    Best of luck!
     
    tangerino likes this.
  13. Al Bundy

    Al Bundy Member

    Joined:
    May 21, 2018
    140
    68
    0
    Location:
    florida
    Vehicle:
    2008 Prius
    Model:
    IV
    Ill add the ABS actuator pump at $3200 dealer installed another common part to fail on Gen 2's
     
    JimboPalmer likes this.
  14. Anana

    Anana New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 30, 2018
    5
    0
    0
    Location:
    Chapel Hill, NC
    Vehicle:
    2007 Prius
    Model:
    II
    Yikes indeed! You guys have me convinced! I'll pass on this Prius, and will look at other vehicles. Thanks all for your advice.
     
  15. PriusCamper

    PriusCamper Senior Member

    Joined:
    Mar 3, 2012
    5,687
    2,308
    0
    Location:
    Pacific Northwest, USA
    Vehicle:
    2007 Prius
    Model:
    Two
    Don't listen to 'em... Having debt and being owned by a lender you owe is a hundred times more life ruining than a 12 year old Prius that might run without issue for several years. Even if you do break down and it takes a little bit of time saving up to get back on the road: STAY DEBT FREE!!!!
     
  16. sam spade 2

    sam spade 2 Senior Member

    Joined:
    Mar 31, 2018
    4,971
    2,020
    0
    Location:
    USA
    Vehicle:
    2017 Prius c
    Model:
    Four
    The exception MAKES the rule.
    A small car payment over say 12 months does NOT violate the "stay debt free" rule.

    Of course, the best thing to do would be to find something without this "ticking time bomb" along with it without spending more than what he has. But that might not be possible or practical.

    Listen to EVERYBODY and make up your own mind.
    But the comments so far seem to be about 10 to 1 for finding a different car.
     
  17. PriusCamper

    PriusCamper Senior Member

    Joined:
    Mar 3, 2012
    5,687
    2,308
    0
    Location:
    Pacific Northwest, USA
    Vehicle:
    2007 Prius
    Model:
    Two
    The ticking time bomb is a good credit rating that leads to more borrowing, not owning an older car... Many of us have never owned a car that's not at least 7-12 years old before we buy it with cash... It's way less wasteful and let's debt ridden owned-by-banks wage slaves drive the car till it's a good enough price.

    Prius are some of the most reliable older cars you can buy.

    Personal debt on the other hand... Y

    ou don't want that kind of gateway drug that gets you living beyond your means. It'll rob you of your soul!!!
     
  18. Skibob

    Skibob Senior Member

    Joined:
    Sep 14, 2018
    2,882
    1,464
    0
    Location:
    Northern California
    Vehicle:
    2006 Prius
    Model:
    N/A
    If you are ok with 19 MPG 4 runners are pretty much bulletproof. Plus the 4WD versions can go anywhere.
     
    PriusCamper likes this.
  19. PriusCamper

    PriusCamper Senior Member

    Joined:
    Mar 3, 2012
    5,687
    2,308
    0
    Location:
    Pacific Northwest, USA
    Vehicle:
    2007 Prius
    Model:
    Two
    When it comes to a bit over $25 for a full tank and 400 miles of range... As in if you want most affordable least polluting personal long distance transit option...
     
  20. Al Bundy

    Al Bundy Member

    Joined:
    May 21, 2018
    140
    68
    0
    Location:
    florida
    Vehicle:
    2008 Prius
    Model:
    IV
    I paid cash for everything for the first 20 years of my adult life and when I applied for a home loan it was rejected by 4 major banks for lack of payment history... you have to have a good payment history to get a loan when you need it.. so if you start early you are better off..
     
Loading...