By November 29, 20100 Comments Read More →

Should I Buy a New Car or Fix Mine?

Reader Question

Hi there,

I have a 91′ Toyota Camry that needs to replace its transmission. I’ve taken it to several shops and they have each quoted me around $1500 for replacement.

I just put in about $800 into brake repair and $250 on new tires in the past year and a half (tires last summer).

I’ve spoken with friends who say that it is not worth it to put that much money into such an old car, but I’ve grown fond of it. To be honest I’m not familiar with car mechanics so I haven’t maintained it as well as I should have in the past. But I’m planning on buying a book to study and learn so that I can take better care of my cars in the future.

Now my question is, should I invest this money into a new transmission or should I buy a new car? I’m on a budget at the moment so I can’t really spend more than $2000. The problem with buying a new car around that price is that there will most likely be problems so I’ll be paying even more in the months to come.

I’m just at a loss and confused about what to do. I hope you can help me. I’m a college student and I only need this car for about another 2 years before I invest in a new one.



Hey Theron,

Personally I would not spend any more money on this vehicle, mainly due to its age. I would suggest that you take a test drive of a Kia Rio, they are one of my favorite recommendations at the lower price points.

You can get a college student credit, and get very low financing…..and hopefully there is a 2009 somewhere in your area for less than $10K. You can probably get a brand new one for $12K with taxes and everything….I am just guessing. Go a test drive one and really think about it with an open mind….check out the trunk space and rear seating space and the fuel mileage. 🙂

Warranty is awesome, safety rating is awesome, maintenance is awesome

You can put down $2K, and you can probably get $800-1000 for your car on which you can also put towards a new car.

Play hardball……LEAVE the dealership in anger at least once, really, do it. make sure they have your cell number….they will call you back. I always give them my lowest of the low numbers, then take a test drive and play very interested but stand firm on my number. If they cant get close, I just walk away and leave…..and they always call me back at a lower price. Gotta stand firm.

Good luck

Austin Davis

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