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Back to wanting a cheap impreza..advice?


smallzoo
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After 10 years away I am back to looking for a used impreza...I won't go into detail but circumstances mean I can only spend up to a £1000

I want a non turbo modem, prefer 4 door but would consider 5 door

A long time ago I had a 5dr impreza sw turbo (1st gen) and I still prefer that shale

So , as I'm looking for a non turbo model do I still have to be VERY careful checking a car out..ie could it still cost me an arm and a leg if it breaks!

I will only do about 3k miles a year. I have a great local mechanic who will look after it..

Any advice would be great. For example is a 2002 later model more sensible than an earlier 2000(1st gen) model

Cheers

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Welcome to the club.

I'd say you're probably a bit safer with a non turbo with regards to the engine being on its way out purely due to the fact the engine will have had less stress on it through its life. The usual things you'd check still apply though, rust, head gasket, signs of accident damage, clutch on the way out etc etc.

It's also worth checking the service history, you don't want to be buying a car that hasn't had an oil change for 20,000 miles. Also make sure it's not due/overdue a timing belt change, if it is the price should reflect it.

I'd maybe be a bit wary of cheap cars that have seemingly small problems- idle issues for instance- you'd be amazed how quickly you can burn through money with things like that!

Best of luck!

Sent from my iphone using Tapatalk

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When I ran a 2.0GX the servicing and parts were very similar to a turbo. You'll save on initial cost and perhaps insurance and a little on petrol.

If you buy a £1k car it's probably that for a reason...and on any car if you need to replace all tires or discs and pads it'll cost you and arm and a leg relative to the cost of the car. Buy the wrong one and you could easily spend double that on getting it road worthy.

My view would be to look at any model car in your price range but look at it very carefully.

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Thanks for that..I found one for 1000 and asked the questions you suggested...the answers as you say probably reflect the price !

 

- any rust,accident damage
 
No rust, but someone has driven it into something on the front right. Bonnet is a bit creased. It's only cosmetic. The whole car is a bit ropey in terms of bodywork, not rust just dents and dings. Looks good but it's a well used car.
 
- any head gasket problems, idle issues 
 
Doesn't seem to be, no.  It's lovely on the motorway, quick and economical.
 
- is the clutch on the way out
 
Doesn't seem to be?
 
- any service history, oil change frequency
 
FSH up to 80k or so, after that it's been owned by a mechanic, he's done all the servicing on it though obviously I have no proof of this. Looking at the overall condition of the car, other than the dents and dings, i'd say it had been pretty well cared for during it's life.
 
- timing belt last changed 
 
Not sure.
 
- condition of tyres,discs,pads 
 
All seem fine. Brakes ok, goes in a straight line, brakes in a straight line.
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..what about the difference between a mk1 sport (2000) and a the mk2 sport (2002)..other than the looks which you either like or dont, is the newer car any better or more reliable etc..

I've not heard of anything you should be concerned about. The bug eyes are a little more refined and comfortable (can't believe I described an impreza as comfortable lol). I had a bug GX for about 7 years. It was very reliable, nothing ever went wrong...but it was having 6 month services all the time and it was an expensive car to run. 

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That's what I hear too. If anything difference new age is more "luxury". With the models following each other I don't thing there were many differences mechanically. Just cosmetic. In that case mileage is a better guide. Along with all the usual fsh and what not. Number of owners can be used as a guide. There's a reason cars have 10 owners and been passed around within 5 months of ownership

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Thanks

 

What does this sound like ?

 

2002 02 REG SUBARU IMPREZA 2.0 GX SPORT 4x4. WAGON. 94k MILES. IN SILVER WITH DARK FULL SPORTS INTERIOR, FULL ELECTRIC PACK, BOTH ELECTRIC MIRRORS AND WINDOWS, CD , A/C, PAS, ABS, MOMO STEERING WHEEL, WELL MAINTAINED, DRIVES AND LOOKS SUPERB, FULL SERVICE HISTORY, HPI CLEAR £1295 

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Not much info there...just the spec of the car really. 

 

I'd ask...what work has it had in the last two years that you have invoices for and can you tell me the mileage and date for each service. Also what big stuff do you have invoices for?

 

I've travelled 75 miles to see a FSH car only to find he had serviced it every 2-3 years, had no paper work but the stamps in the book...which I could have done with some ink and a potato :D

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Heres an interesting estate for a few quid more. If the mileage can be confirmed and it's good in the flesh with no issues it looks a corker. Could be worth spending a few more quid if it's in really good condition...as it is likely to save you in the long run :)

 

 

 

 

http://www.autotrader.co.uk/classified/advert/201504012238839?model=impreza&postcode=rh20pn&radius=1500&sort=default&price-to=1500&onesearchad=used%2Cnearlynew%2Cnew&page=2&make=subaru&search-target=usedcars&logcode=p

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Heres an interesting estate for a few quid more. If the mileage can be confirmed and it's good in the flesh with no issues it looks a corker. Could be worth spending a few more quid if it's in really good condition...as it is likely to save you in the long run :)

http://www.autotrader.co.uk/classified/advert/201504012238839?model=impreza&postcode=rh20pn&radius=1500&sort=default&price-to=1500&onesearchad=used%2Cnearlynew%2Cnew&page=2&make=subaru&search-target=usedcars&logcode=p

That is a good find. Be surprised if it hasn't already gone.
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  • 1 month later...

Hi guys, I've just gone through this very process myself with a simular budget. I spent weeks looking through eBay, Gumtree, Auto Trader and Exchange of Mart.

There is a vast selection out there, a lot of which is pretty ropy! Like Smallzoo I had a limited budget too of about £1000 (I have a second car I need to keep for a while so couldn't PX) needing a bigger car for work I decided to go for the a Wagon Sport, plus these have a Hi and Lo gear ration selector too which could be handy for the odd off-road use. (Oddly the saloons and all turbos do not have this Hi Lo ration selector?)

 

Anyway, I eventually found a dark blue wagon 2001 facelift version on an X plate. Pretty clean, most service history, loads of receipts Cam belt has been done twice but not the clutch though. Rust bubbling through on one wheel arch. Took it for a test drive seemed pretty good for the money so made an offer of £950 and got the car.

 

Now having had it for a few days I've realised that as its 14 years old it's showing it's age, the power is down from the engine some what and the suspension is pretty squidgy, plus the rusty patch on the rear wheel arch is going to cost about £350 to sort.

 

So I guess what I've personally discovered is if you get an old car of 10 years plus - it's really going to show it's age regardless of how well it's been looked after. All that said, I'm pretty happy with the car as it's big enough for what I want, it's got a lot of charactor and it's the last of the original shape which is my favourite Impreza before they changed to the Bugeye.

 

Do I want to spend another £500-£600 on replacing/upgrading the suspension and £300-£450 on trying to upgrade the engine - maybe I don't yet know but if I sell it I want get that money back in the sale!

 

Anyway I hope this was of interest and of use to anyone? - Cheers

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