We have finally decided to sell our 2004 Nissan Murano. We still owe $12,000, but we can get that on a trade in or selling it outright. We are doing the Dave Ramsey thing and have concluded that this vehicle is not the best choice for getting out of debt and being a long-term vehicle. We still have 3 years left to pay on it and we want something that has 1-2 years of payments (no money saved up to purchase a different car outright). The cost of maintenance is not economical either. The tires are very large and expensive on this vehicle, 15-17 mpg in town, and because it's so heavy it goes through a lot of wheel bearings and breaks. Not cheap to fix. So, here is what I am wanting. An older vehicle (1999-2002) that costs us no more than $8,000. My preferences would be (although haven't test driven yet):
Volkswagon Passat or Jetta Wagon
Subaru Outback or Forester
Volvo V70 or V40
I have a 6 year old daughter so I am definitely concerned about safety. I want something solid. I also want something that is going to last me forever, like 200,000-300,000 miles.
We have been talking to a local small dealership that called us today to tell us about a vehicle that he thought would be perfect, although I would have never considered it before. It is a 1998 Infinity QX4, which is an SUV. It has 115,000 miles on it and he is asking $7,000 for it. We test drove it today and it was immaculate. It totally looked new. It had only one owner. BUT, the gas mileage is not good, around 15-16 mpg. Yet, it meets all of our other criteria: less debt, going from a $12,000 loan to a $7,000 loan, and it would potentially be less maintenance, and according to my research it will drive forever because it's an Infinity.
Ok, so I need your feedback. What should I do? Skip the Infinity? Do I test drive the Volkswagon, Subaru or the Volvo, which I am well aware that the cost of repairs can be sky high. That is why I would find one that is one owner that has taken care of the vehicle.
~sigh~ This car buying business stresses me out!!!