1. Attachments are working again! Check out this thread for more details and to report any other bugs.

Looking for a car, found a Prius

Discussion in 'Gen 2 Prius Main Forum' started by MaybeAPrius, Feb 4, 2022.

  1. edthefox5

    edthefox5 Senior Member

    Joined:
    Jul 25, 2007
    10,096
    4,805
    0
    Location:
    Clearwater, Florida
    Vehicle:
    2007 Prius
    Model:
    Two
    I sold my 07 for $5000 last summer. Had 170,000 miles on it.

    Hyper maintained drive train. Engine saw only the best and most expensive oil and changed often. Redline 5-30
    Engine did not eat oil. Engine loved that stuff. Most quiet 1.5 you will ever see.
    You could eat off the valve area. I hyper monitored oil level. Never let it get lower than the full line. Ever.

    Regular trans fluid changes. Redline D6
    Regular inverter coolant changes. Redline water wetter.
    Regular coolant changes. Redline water wetter.


    New ac just repaired. Under dash evap replaced. Icy cold after. $1100
    New radio.
    Brand new NPB hybrid battery installed. Ran perfect. $1600.
    Newer 12 volt.
    Newer combo.
    New headlights.
    Newer tires.
    Expensive tint.

    All documented.

    Interior looked showroom as I installed Wet Okoles seat covers a week after buying the car new.
    They lasted 14 years. Dash looked mint as car never saw sunlight hit the dash parked with Weathertech windshield cover.

    Don’t smoke.

    Lots and lots of work not even mentioning all the tune up and maintenance items over the years.

    All documented.

    Never touched the brakes, warned buyer about that and possible ABS they were willing to throw that dice based on how the car ran and how it was taken care of.

    Show me your thinking about buying that car and I’ll say sounds good go for it.

    It was mamas car then I bought her a 2000 Toyota Corrola with 60,000 miles for $4500. Needed a cop.
    Tuned it up. Never ends.
     
  2. edthefox5

    edthefox5 Senior Member

    Joined:
    Jul 25, 2007
    10,096
    4,805
    0
    Location:
    Clearwater, Florida
    Vehicle:
    2007 Prius
    Model:
    Two
    Btw I did all the work myself except the ac repair. Entire dash had to come out to the firewall.
     
  3. MaybeAPrius

    MaybeAPrius New Member

    Joined:
    Feb 4, 2022
    9
    8
    0
    Location:
    Durham NC
    Vehicle:
    2007 Prius
    Model:
    N/A
    I posted about the 2000 Camry on the ToyotaNation forum and the replies are very similar to what I got here even though it is a very different car.

    However, the issue with the Prius seems to be some big maintenance costs that can come at any time, whereas for the Camry, it would be small maintenance issues coming up every month, that would require me paying a couple hundred bucks at a shop way too frequently.
     
    edthefox5 likes this.
  4. bisco

    bisco cookie crumbler

    Joined:
    May 11, 2005
    108,799
    49,423
    0
    Location:
    boston
    Vehicle:
    2012 Prius Plug-in
    Model:
    Plug-in Base
    any 20 year old car with hundreds of thousands of miles is going to need constant upkeep.

    with your budget, the best bet is still a non hybrid, as they can be worked on by anyone, so you can at least shop around for competitive repair prices.
    plus, they are easier to diagnose. prius can even confound dealerships.
     
  5. Leadfoot J. McCoalroller

    Leadfoot J. McCoalroller Senior Member

    Joined:
    May 12, 2018
    7,157
    6,707
    1
    Location:
    Pennsylvania
    Vehicle:
    2018 Prius c
    Model:
    Two
    I hadn't wanted to say it before, but it may be that you're trying to squeeze too much car out of too few dollars.

    I hate thinking that the minimum cost of owning a car has grown so much, but there you have it. For perspective, I had a 20+ year old "simple" car when I was a student.

    Lots of little things broke often. I learned a lot about fixing them myself, because I had to.

    If you aren't ready with that end of it, maybe a combination of rideshare & bus passes really are the way.
     
    edthefox5 and MaybeAPrius like this.
  6. MaybeAPrius

    MaybeAPrius New Member

    Joined:
    Feb 4, 2022
    9
    8
    0
    Location:
    Durham NC
    Vehicle:
    2007 Prius
    Model:
    N/A
    I actually think that the experience of doing some maintenance to the car myself can be quite good for me moving forward. However, I would not be able to do anything that needs lifting the car or tools beyond what I can find in a grocery store. I am not sure if I can get anything relevant done in this case.

    Were you able to do these more complicate fixes as a student back then?
     
  7. AzusaPrius

    AzusaPrius Senior Member

    Joined:
    May 27, 2020
    1,872
    814
    0
    Location:
    California
    Vehicle:
    2010 Prius
    Model:
    IV
    Leadfoots insane idea that a dealer erases the maintenance history Is completely wrong, this information is how the DMV will verify the mileage and detect rollbacks.

    There is no reason to even do that because that history only helps sell the car unless the want to keep it on the lot.

    An older car with zero history from a dealer is a sure sign not to buy it but then again Im pretty sure you will never see that.
     
    Another likes this.
  8. Leadfoot J. McCoalroller

    Leadfoot J. McCoalroller Senior Member

    Joined:
    May 12, 2018
    7,157
    6,707
    1
    Location:
    Pennsylvania
    Vehicle:
    2018 Prius c
    Model:
    Two
    I was (eventually) able to do quite a lot myself, including a cylinder head swap. It kept me rolling for cheap.

    It taught me a lot, including respect for professional mechanics. I wish you luck!
     
  9. MaybeAPrius

    MaybeAPrius New Member

    Joined:
    Feb 4, 2022
    9
    8
    0
    Location:
    Durham NC
    Vehicle:
    2007 Prius
    Model:
    N/A
    Just to wrap up this thread and bring a little bit of reality about the US market for used car these days.

    The Prius was sold to someone else, without driving test or inspection, for $3000.

    Maybe it was an acquaintance of the owner who knew for sure that it was very well maintained. Or maybe it is just the used car market that is crazy these days.

    Thanks everyone for the insights though!
     
    edthefox5 and bisco like this.
  10. bisco

    bisco cookie crumbler

    Joined:
    May 11, 2005
    108,799
    49,423
    0
    Location:
    boston
    Vehicle:
    2012 Prius Plug-in
    Model:
    Plug-in Base
    probably just another sucker, there are plenty out there. all the best!
     
  11. edthefox5

    edthefox5 Senior Member

    Joined:
    Jul 25, 2007
    10,096
    4,805
    0
    Location:
    Clearwater, Florida
    Vehicle:
    2007 Prius
    Model:
    Two
    The G2 Prius has a great rep. Solid tough little car its a TOYOTA and gets great mileage when its young and healthy. And an incredible piece of engineering for the time. When it was brand new it was a really nice car. Now almost 15 years later....

    I got lucky with mine the Corp I worked for and went 22 years with before retiring got a little shamed because green was all the rage at the time and they offered to all its thousand's of employee's a gift of $5000 for the Prius or $4000 for the Insight if you bought the car new.

    I bought the Prius. It was not a cheap car as it was the rage at the time.But with that gift i couldn't pass it up.
     
  12. Fetherbottom

    Fetherbottom New Member

    Joined:
    Feb 4, 2022
    9
    3
    0
    Location:
    Seattle
    Vehicle:
    2009 Prius
    Model:
    Touring
    That's a sweet gift! Thanks for the wrap-up of what happened, that's helpful to know.
     
    MaybeAPrius and edthefox5 like this.
  13. priuslyfe

    priuslyfe Member

    Joined:
    Dec 20, 2021
    130
    33
    0
    Location:
    43202
    Vehicle:
    2008 Prius
    Model:
    Touring
    The best way to measure an older, cheaper car is how long you hope/plan to use it, what is the relative cost of NOT having a car and its depreciation/salvageable value when sold. Repairs and parts cost should be estimated initially but hopefully you won't experience any of it (esp if driving short trips etc) but Prius' are very easy to maintain.

    If you had bought the car for $2500 and gotten use out of it for a year (with minimal expenses) then you are probably ahead especially if you then sold it for $1500 to $2000 (or more) but maybe even for scrap/parts around $1000.
     
  14. Another

    Another Senior Member

    Joined:
    Jun 22, 2021
    1,802
    511
    0
    Location:
    Naples, Florida
    Vehicle:
    2007 Prius
    Model:
    Touring
    Total Cost of Ownership is an amorphous term. Many people will drive cars into the ground and not do anything that they can avoid even though it is recommended. Cars are remarkably durable even with abuse. To compare one to another one has to have the same maintenance and driving basis. That is hard to do. These days the salvage value of cars is so high given parts demand that the task is even harder.
     
  15. alftoy

    alftoy Senior Member

    Joined:
    Mar 16, 2009
    1,132
    509
    0
    Location:
    Saskatchewan, Canada
    Vehicle:
    2008 Prius
    Model:
    Base
    Many? Many also don't drive their cars into the ground.

    Compare one to the other is hard to do? Speak for yourself, it's not hard to do. maybe for you. I can generally get an idea of the condition of the vehicle. Not unlike buying a house.

    Salvage value high? You made another statement that insurance companies make more money selling write-offs. You sure make generalized statements. Salvage vehicles from our government insurance are very reasonable, its only when bidders get in over their head bidding on vehicles that write-offs get pricey. Have you ever looked at or bid on salvage write-offs? Didn't think so.

    I bought a 2008 Prius write-off from SGI salvage for $1100usd, reserve was $800usd, $200 in body salvage parts and some minor body work and I was on the road. Took Prius on the highway for 500 miles, no CEL other than wheel bearing noise. Mileage 150,000. Maintenance parts, wheel bearings, brake pads, fluids, under $500, doing my own mechanical.

    I can gauge my own total cost of ownership, its not amorphous.
     

    Attached Files:

    #35 alftoy, Feb 10, 2022
    Last edited: Feb 10, 2022
  16. Another

    Another Senior Member

    Joined:
    Jun 22, 2021
    1,802
    511
    0
    Location:
    Naples, Florida
    Vehicle:
    2007 Prius
    Model:
    Touring
    Glad you can assign your one person’s experience as categorical to all while dissing anyone else with contrary opinion. You should work for the government. Maybe you do.
     
  17. MaybeAPrius

    MaybeAPrius New Member

    Joined:
    Feb 4, 2022
    9
    8
    0
    Location:
    Durham NC
    Vehicle:
    2007 Prius
    Model:
    N/A
    Found a 2007 Saturn Ion for $2500 in my area. Single-owner, 121k miles, positive feedback from mechanic who inspected it. Just parked it in my driveway. Hope it was a better choice than the old Prius.

    Saturns are definitely worse than Toyotas, but any Toyota in this price range will come with 250k miles at least and probably will be older than 2003.

    Hope I made a good decision. Thanks everyone for the comments. I think I learned a lot! Maybe when I get a better job, I can become a Prius owner and come back here.
     
  18. rogerthat

    rogerthat Active Member

    Joined:
    Sep 19, 2015
    363
    118
    0
    Location:
    Georgia
    Vehicle:
    2009 Prius
    Model:
    N/A
    Anecdotal, but I know a few people who swore by the reliability of those Saturns! Sounds like you got a great deal.
     
    MaybeAPrius likes this.