Your experiences buying/driving older used cars. (Scion, Yaris)

I just bought a 2011 Scion xB, which had 69,000 miles on it. My car before this was a 2008 Toyota Yaris I bought in 2011 (nice symmetry there) that had 68,000 miles on it. Both these vehicles were rated bullet-proof reliable by Consumer Reports, which was a major reason I bought them. i put 76,000 miles on the Yaris without a single thing breaking. I hit a deer, skidded off the road on another occasion, and was backed into or backed into someone else twice. Never a hiccup.

I figured this was a good buy because both cars had the same number of miles, but the Scion DOES have 4 years of age on it over the Yaris when I bought them. The dealer said it was a single-owner car, but who knows? It has little dings here and there, but seems decent.

Anyone have a some experience with Scion xB’s, or good tips on driving older used cars in general? I need some emotional support for a decision I already made! :eek:

2011 isn’t very old for a car. I think the average age of a car in America is 10 years old, and the average car goes about 20 years before it ends up in the junkyard.

You should be fine. I don’t know much about the scion reliability ratings, but driving a 7 year old car with under 100k miles shouldn’t give you problems.

I bought my Scion xA new – now has 67,000 miles. I replaced the muffler this spring and will probably put brake pads on it this fall. Other than routine maintenance, that is all.

Yeah, I’m not sure why I’m so uneasy. Probably because instead of agonizing over this decision for months, I just went out and did it. I’m rarely that decisive. I remember buying a 1983 Volvo in 2000 and driving it for 5 years. It certainly had lots of minor annoying issues, but it still never even threatened to break down. I have a good track record; I should probably trust that.

Buck up! Buyer’s remorse is very real, and you’d be feeling this even if you’d found The Perfect Car.

Last week, I had to find a really cheap car fast. My car got totaled during a really stressful time, and after a week of riding my bike to work in the rain, I finally found a couple of cheap used cars. My budget was the $2000 that I’d gotten from the insurance company, so I was looking at… well, crap. I would’ve LOVED the Scion I found, but it was twice my budget.

That was an ordeal, and I ended up with a tiny, impractical car… but it *is *quirky! A 2001 Honda Insight. And I discovered another thing that makes it a perfect Midlife Crisis Car… the wife hates it. It rattles, it clunks, it’s low with no back seat and almost no storage. But it’s cute.

I’m having Buyer’s Remorse bad. But it’ll fade soon, and the joy of having four wheels will persist… and that’ll be handy once it’s winter.

I have an '08 Scion TC we got at 40k miles. It now has 120K miles on it, and I have not had a single problem with this car, haven’t had to do anything to it except brakes. Toyota makes great cars, relax.

I bought a new Scion xA in 2005. I still have it, and it has never been in the shop other than for routine maintenance. I don’t put a lot of miles on it (45,000) but it still suffers through Chicago winters every year (outside parking) and takes it like a man.

My 2006 xB has 190,000 miles with no real problems. The heater fan crapped out but that is fairly easy to do yourself once you find the instructions. Spark plugs needed replacement around 120,000 miles, and brake pads as required.


That sounds awesome!

I was all set to break out the stories of my '71 e10 and the '65 F-250. :smiley:

Our “new” car is a 2010.

After about 100-120,000 miles is when the more unusual things start to fail. Rubber gets old and brittle. Seals wear out and cause leaks. Things like fuel pumps and AC compressors go out. But rarely will things fail catastrophically. One thing you should be proactive about is the coolant system. Change the hoses and plastic parts before they fail, as failure can cause a rapid loss of coolant and quick overheating.

If you’re not experienced with cars, it’s not a bad idea to get AAA. Most people know them for towing, but they’ll also come out to jump start the car or change a tire. Even if you don’t use it, it’s good for a nice feeling of security.

That’s good advice, but first check your auto insurance policy. My State Farm policy already provides everything that AAA provides.

My 2006 xB also averages 36-37 mpg in mixed driving. Trips don’t make better mileage due to the boxy shape unless you are driving secondary highways at 50-60 mph, then over 40 mpg is achievable.

I love driving with the windows down in the summer unless it is unbearable. With the windows open it is the quietest car for air noise I have ever had, despite the poor aerodynamics. I can usually tune the various windows and get great airflow with very little noise. Side winds ruin this, but then they do for most cars.

And it handles almost like an original Mini Cooper, way better then you expect. And carries 8’ boards inside. You can actually get a 4’ x 4’ half sheet of plywood inside but the seats need to be fairly far forward. I even carried full 4’x 8’ sheets of light material although they are at a 45 degree angle and almost half sticks out. Hey, it made it OK.

There is as much headroom in front as many pickup trucks. I’m almost six feet tall and there is a measured 9" of headroom. And that’s after I put 1" blocks under the seat tracks to get a better leg angle. The rear seats, although just a flat bench, are extremely roomy with dining chair height seat cushions (16" at the front edge) and plenty of legroom.

I’ve had a lifetime of BMWs and just love the little box.