Although I usually preach that it is cheaper to own a used car and repair and maintain it over buying new, you must be watchful of the car that you buy used.
Some cars are problematic, cost a lot to fix and have very little resale value. These thoughts came to mind while diagnosing a coolant leak on a 2003 Chrysler Intrepid, and I reflected on some of Chrysler’s duds that have been made over the last couple of decades. Though they do make many good, reliable cars they have certainly created some real lemons.
Buying a lemon can be avoided by knowing which models and which engines a vehicle is equipped with. Take the Chrysler 2.7 litre engine. A beautiful engine to look at and a great performer with it’s dual overhead camshafts.
That beauty quickly becomes ugly when things start to go wrong and due to its design, horrific repair bills come up. The water pump on this engine is located behind the timing chain cover and costs well over $1000 to repair. This engine is intolerant of poor maintenance, so be forewarned that if you own a vehicle with this engine, be certain to change your oil every 5,000 kilometers or sooner: failure to do so can cause very expensive engine damage.
Before you buy a used car, call us or talk to a technician that you trust to get their opinion. Over the years I have seen so many vehicles where a simple choice between engine packages can make the difference in how much it will cost to maintain your car by hundreds to thousands of dollars.