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Cheap reliable commuter

Lets say you’ve got $2,000 $3,000 to spend on a reliable daily for a short commute. What do you look for? it has to:

1. have a roof (no convertibles)

2. be easy and cheap to maintain

3. not be a death trap

4. get better than 25 mpg city

Would be nice if:

a. it had a manual

II. it was somewhat fun to drive

Just trying to think of ways to save some money and put less miles on the cruiser as she nears 300k.


Obvious choices are corolla, civic, etc. Im most familiar with Toyota but willing to look elsewhere. Looked at metro’s and such but it didn’t jibe with #3.

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