Well, I guess this is what happens when everyone starts getting their driver’s licenses...we all need something to drive! Recently, yet another one of my friends asked for some advice choosing something as her first car since both her parents work and she needs some way to get to work and school without relying on the unreliable bus routes. She wasn’t sure how much to spend, so I recommended spending around $4K on a vehicle and saving one grand for any repairs or maintenance which is common when first buying a used car. The requirements this time:

  • $4Kish
  • Reliable, auto transmission
  • Preferably sedan or hatch
  • Regular gas, cheap to run

I know that the usual Civic, Integra, Corolla, etc. choices are obviously available, but I want to carefully avoid recommending anything with common issues, i.e. the oil-burning early-2000s Toyotas or the notorious Honda V6 transmissions. Her family currently has a Sienna and an Elantra so they’re firm believers in Asian engineering.

Currently, my best inclination is this super-clean 2000 Camry with 153K on the clock; is there anything we should be looking out for?


Also, I know I said sedans and hatches, but this is technically a hatch...

What does Oppo think?


Here’s our local CL if you want to do some poking around...