Ten Used Cars to Avoid

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Automotive Editor

Rebecca Ballard is a freelance writer who specializes in the automotive industry. A unique interest in finding affordable and dependable automobiles keeps her busy researching the most up-to-date information in the automotive field.

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, Automotive Editor - October 15, 2014

Buying a used car is sometimes the only option when working with a tight budget. Often you can find great deals on older cars with average mileage. Just remember to do some research on different vehicles and make sure you buy a car that will not give you problems down the road.

Stay Away from These Used Cars

PT Cruiser – Although the PT Cruiser has a unique retro design it also tends to have some engine problems. It has also ranked high on the list for drivetrain and electrical issues. If you are looking for a comfortable quiet ride, the PT Cruiser is not for you. With squeaks and rattles no matter where you are driving, leave the Cruiser and look for something else.

Mini Cooper S – The Cooper is definitely one of the more popular smaller cars on the market, but it also has some serious issues with reliability. The engine cooling components, fuel system, and transmission are high-dollar items to fix and buying used increases the chance these systems will fail sooner rather than later.

Saturn Outlook – Often you can find a Saturn for a great price, but you should probably avoid the Saturn Outlook. Transmission problems seem to plague the Outlook in addition to engine trouble, suspension issues, and climate system repairs. When buying used, make sure you have your mechanic check out all of these possible problems.

Chevrolet Impala – One of the biggest problems with the Chevy Impala is the electrical system. Although the vehicles were used for several years as police vehicles, buying a used Impala will probably entail repairs to the ignition, the transmission, and the computer systems.

Chevrolet Aveo – Drivers looking for a small car with great gas mileage may be tempted by the used Chevy Aveo. These subcompact cars lack substance and provide basic transportation. If you are looking for a vehicle that has a little get up and go, the Aveo is not for you.

Smart Fortwo – Another subcompact you should avoid buying used is the Smart Fortwo. This vehicle has a notoriously awkward automated transmission, and its minute dimensions also makes it a little scary when driving down the interstate with larger vehicles speeding by. It probably would not make a smart choice as a used car.

Mitsubishi Lancer – While the Lancer shows off an interesting exterior design, the vehicle lacks several important features. The cabin is created with cheap materials and the seats do not adjust well. The cabin can be noisy and the fuel mileage is not the best. There are other choices in the used market if you are looking for a nice sedan.

Scion iQ – If you are looking for a hatchback, you should probably stay away from the Scion. The crash rating for the Scion is not the best -- even with additional air bags. The Scion iQ does not have the stability or the substantial feeling to make driving the vehicle enjoyable.

Volkswagen Beetle – Nostalgia often clouds the judgment of buyers looking for a used Volkswagen Beetle. Although the style and design is one of a kind, in the newer models you will often find automatic transmission problems and the interior would be considered sub-par. This is one of those used cars you should probably avoid.

Mazda Millenia – Although you may see the Mazda Millenia as a great used sporty car buy, the money you spend in repairs may change your mind. Not only does the car have transmission issues, it also has problems with the engine. Both equal costly repairs no matter how much you paid for the used car.

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, Automotive Editor

Rebecca Ballard is a freelance writer who specializes in the automotive industry. A unique interest in finding affordable and dependable automobiles keeps her busy researching the most up-to-date information in the automotive field.

Follow On: Google+ | Website