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Discussion Starter #1

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They look pretty clean.

The green one with higher miles has the all-weather package - heated seats, mirrors and wiper defroster. It's also missing a piece of body-side molding behind the passenger rear door.

Check underneath for rust. Inside the back doors and around the rear wheels are common spots. There was a recall for these for rear suspension components rusting out.

Try to get a good look under the engine. Look for any oil or coolant leaking from the head gaskets. If so, they'll need replaced.

Give it a good run to feel for any odd shifting or hesitation. Check all fluids as good as you can.

Drive it in tight circles to check for any clicking or grinding noises. This could be wheel bearings or CV joints for the axles.

You're likely to hear wind noise coming from the front doors near the mirrors. This is usually an easy fix. It's caused by the rubber seals that the window slides between at the mirror. Lower the window completely, then keep squeezing those seals together. Closing the doors by pushing on the windows is known to be the cause.
 

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when you go to start the car, you want to be certain when the key is ON that you see the CEL light being tested. Of course, it should be off when the car is running.

Check in the fuse box under the hood to be certain there is NO fuse in the FWD fuse slot.

as said, find a level dry asphalt/concrete surface somewhere, crank the wheel hard left, and let the car idle through a couple of donuts. There should be no jerking. do the same to the right. If it feels or sounds uneven, there could be torque bind.

consider spending $100 or so to have an independent mechanic check the car out.

the rear diff on the car with the All Weather package may be a viscous limited slip. many people say they are worn out though well before 100k miles. But, if it still has any function left, that car might be a better choice if you will regularly be on gravel or mud roads.

good luck
 

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okay so it looks like the burgundy one has some sort of ignition problem. It started once fine, right at the lot the second go wouldnt turn it over. It had many other problems like a bad brake pedal and a not so flattering interior.
Now, the other one with the All-weather pkg, this one surprised me. Although it has about 40k more miles on it, it looks to be much more well taken care of. Pedals sensitivity is better, and interior is really pristine, i just need more info on what to look for.
I understand that since its an automatic with 240xxx miles i need to be careful about the transmission. Im not looking into paying someone to look at it for me, but how will i tell if it has had a new transmission, i heard somewhere that around 180-190 is where these start to have transmission issues. Im hoping it already went through it but if not should i be worried since it looks really well taken care of already. Everything works im going to end up paying about 4800 plues 19 interest, 218 monthly. (18 year old no credit, credit union loan)
im going this friday please, give me a heads up
 

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All I can offer is that mine has 232k and I've not had any trans issues. It still shifts beautifully. I got it at around 97k, so I'm pretty sure it's original. And I've pulled a loaded trailer through the Cumberland Gap several times in the summer. I don't have an auxiliary cooler either, though I know I should. And the all-weather package is nice!
 

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Head gaskets Head gaskets Head gaskets.

If there is no visible leakage, check the coolant reservoir for any dirty coolant. It should be bright green. If it is not, the head gaskets have likely developed an internal leak and will need to be replaced.
 
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