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Best little run about car under $5,000?

Discussion in 'The Pub' started by QuarterWit, Sep 5, 2013.

  1. Closer to $4,000 than $5,000 would be ideal, but hey...

    So a while ago I was going to pick up a magna. Decided against it at the last minute and current circumstances dictate that I don't really need something that large.

    So I'm thinking about a shitty little hatchback. (Ideally a hatch because I can fit my upright bass in there). I'm looking at a manual, something that is cheap to run/repair with pretty ubiquitous spare parts.

    Has anyone driven anything in this price bracket that meets all the requirements but is also a little bit fun? I'm not after a powerhouse, but something with sharp steering and a responsive engine would make an otherwise dull, practical purchase a little fun.

    I'm looking at mirage's, some getz's (Getzi?), Lancers etc... But I know nothing at all about cars so all opinions and first hand experiences would be great.
  2. Toyota make a good small car.
    Parts are easy as to get a hold of.

    I had a Toyota Paseo. One of those little Coupes . May not fit your double bass though.

    The car was a reliable piece of work and is still being driven (not by me) today.

    Only had a 1.6lt engine but win a cool little 5 speed gear box it was a neat little runner around the burbs.

    I did a return trip melb/syd in it. Not recommended without breaks as it felt like my arse was dragging on the ground.
  3. These days 4k gets a decent car. Make sure it's efi. Lancer, corolla are all good. Just look for the newest car with the lowest klm's u can afford. Hyundai are decent cars as well.
  4. You should be able to get a Peugeut 306 GTi for about that price. Won't win the ubiquitous spare parts contest but should be a hell of a lot more entertaining to drive than a Getz and something a little out of the ordinary.

    The first generation Ford Focusses might be within your budget now too. Again, much nicer to drive than a Corolla/Pulsar/etc - essentially the same car as a Mazda3 but used ones have depreciated quicker because they look a little quirky and people assume an older Ford will be less reliable than an older Mazda. Not hugely powerful but the handling is good for a cheap, mainstream car. I've heard similar things about the early 2000s Ford Fiesta but never driven one.
  5. falcon on gas- low to no maintenance, drive it till it dies.
  6. The rental Getzes that I've driven have been quite good fun to buzz through the gears and chuck around.

    Older Suzuki Swifts are quite sporty. More recently, Daihatsu Charades and Cuores rev like bastards and handle like original Minis. Not sure how well an upright bass would fit though.
  7. early 2000's ford laser/mazda 323 (same car) ...woman had one ...altho auto - was a hoot to throw around and had suprisingly alot of boot space and parts should be more readily available

    in regards to mirages a mate has one now....it does the job but it's gutless....and i sat in the drivers seat once and i'm by no means a tall fella (170cm) and i still felt like my head was going to hit the roof to memory...just felt very cramped and cheap looking
  8. 323 of age you should be able to get for around 2k. Heaps of them around, heaps of parts, about 8 to 9 litres per 100 around town. Same on highway when doing a decent clip. Should be able to get a newer one for 4k. An older focus should also be around that price.
    • Agree Agree x 1
  9. N15 SSS Pulsar. I've had one for years as a daily driver, great little car. Can get one now for 4K.
    • Agree Agree x 1
  10. Honestly, as boring as they are, I don't think you can past a Toyota.
  11. I used to have an '81 323 and the amount of crap I could get in the back with the seats folded down was completely phenomenal for the size of the car. I used to do mobile DJ work and the deck, speakers, lighting array and entire disc collection fit in there no trouble at all.

    Alternatively, just get a REALLY big top box :D
  12. I have a Mazda 121 - fking fantastic car. You can find them for about $2k now.
    • Like Like x 1
  13. BJ Astina.
  14. Nissan NX

    SR20 motor......targa top, fast back little fun-bucket.

  15. Mate - I bought a '96 Holden Barina for $3K w/ 60K km's on the odo when I first came to Sydney about 3 1/2 years ago. I sold it a few months ago, and was still able to get $2100 for it.

    So for a car I owned for just over 36 months, it literally only cost me $25 p/ month in depreciation + petrol + Rego & CTP + general maintenance (oil changes, etc.) The car didn't miss a beat and I did about 11K km's p/ year.

    It's not a fast car but just buy a manual and you can make any manual car a bit of fun.

    You can even put a little exhaust on it and make it sound like all the Ninja 250/300s on the road :ROFLMAO:

    I've always owned Jap cars for the reliability, but I was pretty impressed w/ that little Holden Barina.
  16. Which is, IIRC, a Japanese design, apart from the badge.
  17. I had a used Hyundai Getz 4 door hatch...picked it up with 100,000km ..sold it with 250,000.
    150,000KM I had it and not one problem.
    Used to put a 9 foot surfboard in it ....the rear seats fold down or up ,depending what your loading in the back.
    There is that much room in the back when seats are folded up ,you could fit a station wagons rubber mat in the back...the mats you get from super cheap auto to protect your carpet.
    Check one out ..cheap to buy and cheap to repair..my mechanic has one and he's a full on rev head hood with hot rods...and loves it..:)
  18. Thanks for the advice everyone!

    I'm off to look at a few cars this week. 1999 Corolla hatch ($4500), 2006 Getz ($4900) and a 2000 Excel ($3500). All with books, all manuals all around 100,000k's. It'll be interesting to compare them.

    I know it's limited details, but all things being equal what would you be more inclined to look go with?
  19. Out of those, the corolla.
    • Agree Agree x 1