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New Car Conundrum


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So, now that I've got my national service and all out of the way (discharged on August 15) and the potential of more money in the near future, I'm preparing to save up some moolah for a new ride.

At the moment, the biggest candidate is a 1987-1990 Toyota Supra 3.0 Turbo. With a price of about 80.000 NOK (roughly 12.000 USD), 230bhp and an alleged top speed of 240-260 km/h; it seems like a pretty good choice. Plus, I'm a huge Toyota fan, seeing as how my current car - an '87 Toyota Camry 2.0 - is hands-down the best car I've ever driven, so if I'm going to get another pre-nineties car, it'll definitely be a Toyota. (The popular 80s alternative around here is the Volvo 240-series, but they're not as comfortable to drive and there's generally some issues with the dynamo, electrical system and ignition.)

I've also done a bit of research and found dealers carrying most of the stuff I'll throw in an eventual Supra. New turbo, brakes, exhaust system, dampeners, stero, neon, etc.

However, even though Toyotas are known for "never stopping", there will still probably be a pretty large amount of rust on cars of that age, meaning extra expenses and time to have it returned to a tip-top condition. (My next car will be a big project and hopefully end up like a mean 'Fast and the Furious' type car.)

So, I've also been looking at newer models. Obviously, a late-nineties Supra - for example - is completely out of my league with a price tag of 400.000-800.000 NOK (60.000-120.000 USD). But some of the smaller cars look somewhat interesting - like the Peugeut 206 ('99 models go for as low as 40.000 NOK - 6000 USD). Obviously, it's got nowhere near the power of a Supra, but it's relatively new (meaning it's got driving comfort and is in pretty good condition, rust and dirt-wise) and has great styling opportunities. (Just look at the awesome styled-up Peugeut 106 in Redline magazine - for those who have it.) And with a little work, who knows? With some time, money and tuning, maybe even a 206 can outrun an original '89 Supra?

Which, basically, is my question. Is it possible to turn "puny" cars like the 206 into lean, mean racing-machines? Or am I better off going with a real sports car like the Supra? Driving comfort is a huge issue for me. I really can't stand driving most "old" cars, like my mate's 80-something Ford Sierra or even my dad's 1991 Ford Escort stationwagon. Don't get me started on Volvos - if they even start, they handle like a truck. My Camry, on the other hand, is really smooth in all ways. Steering, transmission, the pedals - it's a dream to drive. Even far better than my mother-in-law's almost new Hyundai Atos. Not just in the way handles (can't really compare a sedan with the square box that is the Atos), but technically as well.

Any other suggestions? I know the Honda Civic is a pretty popular youth car as well, but the price seems a bit high compared to what's under the hood. And I won't even consider getting a Golf ;)

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Right.. An R33 Skyline's only some 500.000 NOK and that's before registration (which also requires you to change a couple of parts first). I estimate it'll be about a year before I've saved up for an 80.000 NOK Supra, so that's pretty much my price cap. Pretty much looking for a cool car here, preferrably easy to style up and if it hasn't got a fast and powerful engine to begin with, it better be easy to tune up to racing specs :D

Looks like it'll be a Supra, unless I find someone who can work wonders on smaller cars. *sigh* Better start saving up extra for the rust removal and engine overhaul...

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well personally id go the newer pugnort.

Mainly cos im not a big japanese car fan, i prefer more cylinders and less neon lights and plastic. Im also a bit of a european car fan. :)

Depending on your age, the Peugeut would be easier and cheaper to insure, which is a must if you wanna make this a car a keeper. You should be able to crank a fair amount of power out of the Peugeut. Im not sure if they are turbo charged, but you could always fit one. A nice exhaust, newer suspension and brakes, you'll have a nice little rally mobile. Whack in a nice big stereo, and you'll be doof doofing through town.

The newer car will also be safer. Airbags, newer technology etc. If you wanna drive in fast cars, you needa make sure that if you stack it you dont kill yourself.

As you say, bodywork is a big issue on the older cars, rust, fading, damage etc.

I rekon that by the time you tinker with this and that, and fix the bodywork on the supra, the prices would end up very close.

The Peugeut gets my vote


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.:Nightmare:.,Aug 22 2004, 17:02 ]
biggest cars that europeans drive are mini-vans

Which are actually vans not cars....

if i wasnt terribly lazy, id change it to MOTOR VEHCILES just for you nightmare, but i am terribly, terribly lazy.

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well my experiences with supras just increased a tad.

I dragged one for the first time, twice.

Its one of the newer ones though, a mighty fine automobile indeed.

Both were short drags, 2 lanes at the traffic lights that quickly went to one.

First one i wasnt 100% expecting, so he got the jump on me, second time he just crapped all over me, cos my car is a pile of crap. <_<

dammit im still all hyped up :angry:

man i wish i had a better car :(

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The aftermarket for Newer vehicles is massive. Trust me.

I'm working on an 86 Bronco II. A dead sexy vehicle, but I can't find anything for it (because it's an odd year, just before they changed body type on it in 87).

I'll be repainting it myself, and doing a lot of the work on my own. But there's no aftermarket for vehicles made before 96. You can probably find mroe than I can for tuner cars, but trust me man anything that doesn't start with a 9 or 0 for it's year is almost impossible to find.

Do a search if you want. Hit up places like OReillyAuto.com, Jegs.com, Performance Import Tuner, (off hand) and others.

However, the aftermarket on trucks (expecially newer Fords, Toyotas -ukh-, Chevys and even GMCs) is massive.

However, consider practicality. Newer Hondas or Toyotas get awesome gas mileage. My girlfriend just got a brand new 04 Civic. She gets roughly 50 - 60 miles to the gallon, even on these back roads. We own an 86 Accord that gets roughly 35 - 50 mpg (Highway miles, in OD, being the best). My Cadillac gets about 11 mpg, and the Bronco gets about 18 mpg. Right now, that's not cheap. I rna out of gas friday, and spent $30 nearing a full tank on the Bronco.

Sorry if I ramble a lot, but I've been doing a lot of research on aftermarkets and the pros and cons of each vehicle I have at hand (86 Bronco II and Accord) to work on.

The fact is, older cars (unless they're classics) are near impossible to get parts for, unless you find specialty companies. I found one, James Duff Ent., that specializes in Bronco IIs for example.

Bottom line, newer cars cost more, but have a massive aftermarket with plenty of selection (no matter what you go with). Older cars (mainly your 78s to 89s) have smaller aftermarket selections because of all the change that took place through the industry at the time. Example, the 86 Bronco II is an exact replica of the 86 Ranger, but with a different body, and minor engine changes, however, the 87 of each vehicle is vastly different from the 86 both in engine and body. Finally, your classic cars (escpecially American Muscle -probably not easy to find in Norway ;)- ranging from 79 and older) have great aftermarkets as well.

There's pros and cons to each, just figure out what;s best for you. Heck, go to local shops/dealers to talk with some real experts on what they think. But newer vehicles definatley have the edge...

Wow, that was long and drawn out. :D Hope it makes sense.

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Stay away from the Supra. Just a tune-up on it is expensive and not for someone to do in their front yard. Typically it involves removing the intake manifold (or a portion of it) to acess the spark plugs. Early models (my ex GF has an 86) of the Supra also were notorious for overheating problems. You will end up having to replace radiators and cylinder heads more than you would wish if you kept the car long enough.

Last Peugot I attempted to work on required a special spark plug socket so I didn't do anything to it (it came in for a tune-up) and I didn't like what I saw even then.

Toyota's are dependable and do last a long time. Stick with the Camry models.

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One of my best mates drives a NA Supra (for non mechhies, that means it has no turbo), the same as the one you described (log pop up lights model, around 1990).

He loves it. The only rust was around the windscreen, and was very minor (cost in the order of $150 US to fix). Rest of the car is perfect condition. Goes beautifully even without the turbo (140kw, 170 with one IIRC).

I think it'd be a good car, at the right price (I'd buy this one off my mate if he sold it soon, only thing I'd change is remove the slush box and put in the factory 6 speed).

Like WK said though, there's not much of an opening at the front for cooling air, hence overheating MAY be an issue. Your geographic location would suit it a lot more than mine though :). Could put a GT-4 hood scoop on it I guess.

At the end of the day its your car though...

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I [ran] out of gas friday, and spent $30 nearing a full tank on the Bronco.

$30 for a full tank? I'd kill for that. Takes about $25 to fill up half my Tundra's tank. I'd be so screwed if I didn't have a job.

I'm going to go ahead and assume you will be paying insurance on your car Day. The cost to insure a Supra compared to a Camry is a joke. (In the US anyhow.)

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Thanks for the feedback guys :)

Parts and such isn't really that much of an issue. I have a load of contacts and I've already located a good source for parts (they have lots of stuff specifically for 86-92 Supras), and getting it all fitted shouldn't be an issue - and if it is, I have a guy in the family running his own workshop with half a dozen experienced employees and a future father-in-law who used to work at a nearby Toyota joint.

Practicality isn't very important. Especially in the case of a Supra, the next car will be a real 'show car' - it'll only be used during the summer and mostly on tracks, at car gatherings, etc. I might even go as far as not registering it and using it exclusively on tracks. My girlfriend's already making plans for the Camry (she's buying it once I get a new car), so it'll stay within the family and become sort of a "semi-everyday use car". Most of the changes to it will be cosmetic (spoiler, total pink color theme, neons and maybe - just maybe - a small turbo), so it'll stay relatively economica. So my next car won't necessarily be something I drive more than once a week, at most.

Truth is, though, that once I get my hands on a car I really like, I have a hard time not driving the crap out of it :D The thought of only using a car on tracks is... Confusing. Sure, it'd be an amazingly kick-ass car, but what's the point of having a car like that if you almost never use it?

A Peugeut (or Fiesta RS Turbo, mmmm) sounds interesting, but they seem so puny compared to a Supra. I mean, an original '89 Supra Turbo holds 230bhp - with a little money and a little work, that can easily be increased to over 400bhp. (And with a lot of work, 700-800bhp) Compare that to a '99 206 with less than 100bhp originally and it's easy to get tempted by the Supra. For a pure cruiser, almost anything will do (as long as it's remotely possible to style it up), but I really, really, really like speed :D (But speeding tickets cost, hence my plan to stick with race tracks...)

Oh well.. Guess it all comes down to what mood I'm in when I save up enough money.

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well i wish i had your dillema mate, at the moment i have too many expenese to worry about.

But if your goin jap, have ya thought about any other nissans? the Silvias (or 200sx's, depending on where you are) are mighty fine, as are there little bros, 180sx's, or there awesome cousins, 300zx's.

As for driving fast, make sure you dont get caught, it works for me :P

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I actually saw a 200SX the other day.. Not too bad, but I've been adviced to stay away from them. (Reliability something-schumthing or having to get new parts.)

There are some nice BMWs around. While I would love a brand new M3, an old 3-series is more in my price range. The '86 325i cab looks great once you get it all styled up. Not something to go with if you want a unique car, though. You'll see paper ads with old BMWs that have "M3-styling+++", "Rieger styling+++", etc several times a week around here. Seems the only less unique car you can get is a Volvo 240 series. (Tempting to get one of those, though. Cheap, easy to soup up and the sight of a styled-up 242 V8 TIC roaring down the strip is just awesome.)

The Supra's still looking like the best alternative. Just a tad worried about the winter, seeing as how I've almost only driven front-wheel drives before - except when I tested my mate's old 242 on the ice. Wicked. Maybe tune down the turbo before the snow comes and be really, really gentle on the pedal... :blink: Might work, assuming I can afford insuring/registering it. Or even buy enough gas to get anywhere. Hmm.

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Tune down the turbo??? Gentle on the pedal???....nahhhh. All you need is learning how to permanently drive slightly sideways and get a set of good studded rear tires :devil:

God how I miss those icy roads at times living here downunder, had lots of fun back home in sweden during winter. Although with the V8 power I have acess to here I don't really need ice to go sideways...just plenty of money to buy new rear tires :(

And as a swede...what about a SAAB?? Come in some nice flavours nowadays

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