My partner just got a prius....now I want one!

Discussion in 'Newbie Forum' started by Alex Wilsey, Feb 11, 2021.

  1. Alex Wilsey

    Alex Wilsey New Member

    Joined:
    Feb 11, 2021
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    Location:
    Drexel Hill, PA
    Vehicle:
    2005 Prius
    Model:
    II
    Hey everyone!

    So last week I found my partner a 2005 Prius with 196,000 miles on it for $2,500. He ended up buying it since the owner had a long history with the car and it was in remarkable condition with the exception of two minor dents and a slightly cracked front bumper. The motors are in remarkable condition, oil recently changed, undercarriage is in exceptional shape, newer tires, new brakes and came with a recently replaced hybrid battery that also has a warranty, from a company with a fantastic HV battery replacement program and with 5 star reviews. We recently took it on a trip down to MD because I had some important matters (related to my crappy driving in my old 6-cylinder, gas guzzler Mercedes) and to visit my best friend who lives near the Naval Academy, then back home to Philly. His Prius took it like a champ. She drives amazing on the highway and in town the MPG's are amazing. It's a bit cold here right now, so the highway mileage is just above 40 due to it being roughly 25-35 degrees at any given time here, so our little snowflake pal lives on the dash during this time of year. We are hoping he gets a long time out of this car since its in such great shape. Only thing is that I have to replace the headlight ride height sensor. No big deal, seller gave me the paperwork for the workup and the part, I looked and the little dinky linkage is broken. I'll just get a certified one off Ebay or just get the sensor so the car stops screaming at us when we drive it. most likely after intense NE winters here over the years those little contacts in the sensor finally corroded. Oh well, I'm not worried about that, No more than $100 to fix. No oil leaks, no big issues, owned by a detailer and mechanic, so I am confident he will get thousands more miles out of it. It's just for him to get to work and nursing school clinicals, prius screamed to me and he loves it. Fingers crossed!

    Now to me, I am in love with this car because although not powerful, I cant stand paying for gas. I am in college and I am also the mother of all tightwads. I currently drive a 2014 Kia Soul in 6-speed manual. Quite an odd commodity. I also have a 2003 Mercedes-Benz E-320 given to me by a friend because she has a lot of miles and they no longer wanted it. The Mercedes is parked at the moment due to electrical issues, I might fix it and sell it, but I'm unsure. It's a pain in the rear end and I think its not worth repairing since it's nearing 262,000 miles. I think I might junk her but I feel bad doing it because it was my best friend's car growing up, but I think the car is at the end of its life, and It is a German car, the 12V battery alone is a fortune to replace because it's MASSIVE, and it has a silly auxiliary battery for the crazy brake system you have to get from Mercedes, and god forbid I need to pay for that I'll have a heart attack. So to my soul, she has around 85,000 miles and cleans up very nice. A few dings, and a silly latch on the back is cracked but it's maybe a $5 part. I am considering selling it and going to a gen 2 Prius. I'd prefer a gen 3 but the 2010 and 2011 models had many issues. The entire reason I'd go to a Toyota is because a Toyota will outrun a Kia or Mercedes any day for half the repair cost. I also love the gas mileage.

    I am looking at a 2006 and 2004 Prius, yeah they are significant year downgrades but they are at Honda and Toyota dealers with 88,000 and 96,000 miles, respectively. Both have clean Carfax and several, routine service records. My thing is that my price range is low, and Priuses are meant to be driven. Do I get one with higher mileage because there is a better chance that the battery is in better shape, or do the low mileage ones seem like a good idea? The low mileage ones I am looking at are in amazing condition, absolutely no issues. I figure If I sell the Mercedes and Kia, then buy a Prius for a bit less, I can pocket the extra cash for rent, books or tuition. Higher mileage Priuses don't scare me if they're well maintained and either have properly checked batteries or reconditioned ones that have been replaced by reputable dealers.

    Thoughts anyone??? I drive a lot. Priuses are meant to be driven, I figure it is worth a shot!

    Thanks!

    Alex
     
  2. ILuvMyPriusToo

    ILuvMyPriusToo Senior Member

    Joined:
    Dec 4, 2014
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    Location:
    Outside Philly, PA
    Vehicle:
    2009 Prius
    Model:
    II
    Welcome to the club. It is good that you sound handy with cars. When you take the plunge, set some of that cash aside into a hybrid battery fund and build up a 3K reserve to reduce the impact of potential repair bills on your student budget. There are no guarantees on these older cars, and some will say middle mileage is better than low mileage with respect to the eventual life of the battery. Oh, and get some catalytic converter protection for the underside. My cat was sawn off near the Philly city line last year and these thefts are rampant including in our area. Then, set your worries aside and enjoy the drive!
     
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  3. bisco

    bisco cookie crumbler

    Joined:
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    Location:
    boston
    Vehicle:
    2012 Prius Plug-in
    Model:
    Plug-in Base
    tl;dr. welcome, and go for it!(y)
     
  4. ETC(SS)

    ETC(SS) The OTHER One Percenter.....

    Joined:
    Oct 28, 2010
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    Location:
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    ^ That.

    I know you said that you were a tightwad, but this is a classic case of "it takes money to save money."
    If you do not DIY car repairs then older Priuses are a hard pass.

    @ cat theft protection.
    Some of these items are upwards of $250.
    If you live on free soil, an aftermarket cat is less than $200 - self installed.

    Your call.
     
  5. Alex Wilsey

    Alex Wilsey New Member

    Joined:
    Feb 11, 2021
    23
    4
    0
    Location:
    Drexel Hill, PA
    Vehicle:
    2005 Prius
    Model:
    II
    All I can say is this, If I got the headlights on my Mercedes fixed by the dealer it would be $3,000 to fix them. So I can tolerate $200.

    I am going to get Cat protection for my partner's Prius and probably mine if I go and get one.

    I totally forgot to say this, usually when the hybrid battery pack goes bad there is a very easy way to narrow it down to a few cells and just replace the bad cells. All I need is a voltmeter and any cell that is lower than 7.6V (usually below 7V), then I have my bad cell. I can get a new Panasonic cell on Amazon for about $40, and if I get a prius I am just going to buy a few for the inevitable.
     
    #5 Alex Wilsey, Feb 11, 2021
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 11, 2021
    mikey_t and bisco like this.
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