What Car Should I Buy
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  1. #1
    Tadpole
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    Default What Car Should I Buy

    Hi guys first time posting on this forum.

    I have $20,000 to spend on my second car (replacing my old 87 saab 9000 turbo). So i am looking for ideas on what to get.

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    My only real requirement is that it be an automatic and have enough power for over taking on highways etc and be reasonably cost efficent and reliable. As well as it be different and outside the box thats why im looking at french cars.

    I dont really want a turbo as i am 20 and the insurance is a killer.

    I am thiking of a 1999 citroen xantia 3.0L exclusive or a 1996 renault laguna 3.0L what are these cars like?

    Any opinions welcome and cheers for the help

    Bob

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    1000+ Posts David Shearer's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bob the canibal
    Hi guys first time posting on this forum.

    I have $20,000 to spend on my second car (replacing my old 87 saab 9000 turbo). So i am looking for ideas on what to get.

    My only real requirement is that it be an automatic and have enough power for over taking on highways etc and be reasonably cost efficent and reliable. As well as it be different and outside the box thats why im looking at french cars.

    I dont really want a turbo as i am 20 and the insurance is a killer.

    I am thiking of a 1999 citroen xantia 3.0L exclusive or a 1996 renault laguna 3.0L what are these cars like?

    Any opinions welcome and cheers for the help

    Bob

    Welcome,


    With that Cash would love to see you in a nice GTI6 but alas, its a manual. You can get a really nice 406 auto for that price now, maybe a V6 but would have to be slightly sus for 20K. Manuals certainly out???

    Dave
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  3. #3
    Moderator Alan S's Avatar
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    You'd get a ripper XM Citroen for that; V6 auto, hydractive suspension, power steering, climate control and a future classic to boot.
    Extremely practical design, drives and performs & handles like a limo when needed and as good as a sports car if that's your thing.
    Slashy looking thing as a bonus.




    Alan S
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  4. #4
    Tadpole
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    Yeah i like the GTI6 as well but its manual. And i wish i could drive manual but its my inability to do so as why i am getting rid of my saab (which i really liked even if i could barely drive it).

    My uncle has a manual peugeot 406 2 litre and it seems to lack power (he has always had problems since new with the transmission thoe) so i can only imagine what an automatic 2 litre would be like in terms of power (am i misinformed about this). But a 6 cylinder sounds nice cheers ill have a look at them.

    Also i was told that any problem with the Automatic gearbox ment its replacement due to the gear box being a sealed unit is this correct?

  5. #5
    XTC
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    Quote Originally Posted by bob the canibal
    Yeah i like the GTI6 as well but its manual. And i wish i could drive manual but its my inability to do so as why i am getting rid of my saab (which i really liked even if i could barely drive it).
    Practice, Practice, Practice ... it's worth being able to drive a manual properly in the long run...

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  6. #6
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    Welcome to the forum bob,

    Like XTC206 says, I would strongly recommend perfecting your manual driving if it's at all possible - you save so much money in the long run (manuals are ~$2000 cheaper if bought new, maintenance is less etc etc) so the benefits really are there.

    Auto boxes shouldn't need replacement unless they are poorly maintained - they are serviceable, like any other item. Our old Citroen XM (as Alan S has shown) did have a total transmission failure at something like 220 000km from memory. The box along was about $4500. It was a ZF auto, shared with many (most?) European cars, so any Euro brand you buy would be up for similar expenses.

    The 406 -the 2 litre auto is no rocket. The 3L V6 Auto is pretty "zippy" - the 3L V6 manual is a cracker Buy/Rent/watch the movies Taxi 1, 2 and 3 to see what a 3L manual V6 406 does

    Gotta run, Bennymarsh is beeping his horn out the front!
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  7. #7
    Real cars have hydraulics DoubleChevron's Avatar
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    I don't think you could go wrong with either a Laguna or Xantia. The autoboxs are a lot weaker in a Laguna I think. I've never heard of an auto dying is a Xantia.

    If you could find a V6 Xantia Activa I think it'd be an unbeatable car. However I don't think you could go far wrong with a Laguna, though for the same price as a Xantia V6 you'd probably find you'll only get a 4cylinder slugomatic in the Laguna .

    The XM is a bit of an oddball in Australia and no matter how good a car they are, I think a Xantia would be a better car for a first time Citroen owner. Certainly if you had owned a Citroen before or could DIY I'd think the XM would be nice. The XM was an incredibly expensive car when sold in Australia ($80,000+). I imagine the only cheap way to get parts for one would be to buy them in from Andyspares or a friend in the UK as XM's are basically in the "Free to any home" category in the UK.

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  8. #8
    Tadpole
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    Cheers guys for recomendations i think i am actually starting to fall in love with the xantia. The peugoet 406 is nice thoe.

    And i have no intention of only ever driving automatic (especially as some of the cars i really want to own in my life time come only come in manual GTI6 , Clio sport 2.0l ) yet ive been told by my parents (they are funding this car, yes poke fun at the spoiled sydney north shore kid) and my driving instructor (im on my Learners) that until my skills improve through a year or two of driving on my p's i should stick to auto then learn manual as a more experienced driver.

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    Fellow Frogger!
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    My vote goes to the Xantia too, but guys, just asking, is it expensive to maintain the hydraulic suspension in the long run. The Laguna benefits from the conventional suspension? I have driven both 4 cylinder and 6 cylinder Lagunas and Xantias. The Laguna 4 cylinder has enough poke and looks really nice. The Xantia is a great car too with a different design and the suspension is real plus.

    Both cars are smooth and roomy. 6 cylinder engines are naturally a lot smoother and also better specced than their 4 cylinder siblings.

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    Moderator Alan S's Avatar
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    Having been a driving instructor myself in Surfers Paradise, I'd suggest being guided by your driving instructor as it's no put down being told that you aren't a good manual driver.
    Some take a while to get used to driving in traffic whilst at the same time trying to operate 3 pedals, a bit like talking on a mobile phone whilst trying not to run over the copper on the pedestrian crossing..
    I was seconded to teach a certain high profile businessmans wife who was absolutely bloody hopeless in any car but ended up driving a BMW 1.8i auto as a compromise. To make it worse, she wasn't real great in speaking or comprehending the English language either but she did get her licence.
    Don't worry about the "North Shore" thing, that's something you've go to live with, but don't sell short either the Xantia or the XM but in a V6 the latter is going to be easier to find than the former and just as much if not more fun.
    Here on aussiefrogs mate, you're just another frogger; we don't really give a shit where're you're from; you'll get just as big a kick in the @^$* regardless if you play up....

    Alan S
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    theres a few things i'd look at but it depends how big your car needs to be... if you want an auto and a fair bit of zip in a 306 i'd look at an XSI if your'e definatel after an auto... there nice cars with a fair bit of zip and you could get one of the last ones (after july 99 built) for that sort of price... i wouldn't really be looing at V6's unless you want to pay a premium for registration and insirance being young so i'd leave the 406 out of what your looking at... if its a cit that you would like i'd also be looking at xsaras and xantias would be good in that sort of price rangerange..... you could also probably pick up something like a decent clio if you were after a renault in that price range... there you go guys a few cars that would be good for under $20k and from all the french marquee's
    Last edited by orestes; 27th July 2004 at 09:03 PM.

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    1000+ Posts brenno's Avatar
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    As I read your requirements a couple of cars came to mind;

    * Xantia V6
    * 306 XSi (the last models had a much better auto than the earlier models)

    Otherwise, if you enjoyed the Saab experience, a 9000 V6 turbo would be pretty damn good =)

  13. #13
    Tadpole
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    Yeah ive looked at the 306xsi (2000 model) and have been for test drives in two in recent weeks but both had things wrong with them e.g. ticky engines (both cars) even after been taken for a spin and left to idol (im not so great at the under the hood part but dad reckons it was caused by worn hydrulic tappets) and on both cars the automatic gearbox was going i.e the torque converter was slipping which would be an indicator that the gear box is on the wayout and as ive previoulsy mentioned i was told that the gear box is a sealed unit which means that i would have to get a complete replacment instead of just repairing it. I was just a bit worried that the same things had happened on both cars (both these cars were from dealers and the nrma reports supplied said they were fine which was worrying seing as they were not). If anyone out there has a 2000 model peugeot 306xsi i would be interested in finding out whether this is a common problem. Clio's in auto only have a 1.4 engine which would worry me in terms of peformance anyone out there driven one? what are they like?
    And cheers for everyones help i hadnt expected such a great number of replys.

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    Member Xsara VTS/ Pete's Avatar
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    Bob, If you're looking for a french car you have come to the right forum. Beauty is in the eye of the beholder, so only you can decide what style of car suits your driving . The XM is a future classic but getting parts could be time consuming. Renault Laguna is a looker and bigger than Xantia. For $20,000 a fairly new Xsara 5 door hatch could also be considered. Xsara has a very solid feel and excellent road holding . Good luck with your purchase , enjoy test driving your shortlist and no doubt any french car will reward you in the long run.

    Cheers Pete

  15. #15
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    G'day Bob, welcome aboard AF!

    I apologise for the long-ish post first up...!

    Well being a Clio Sport owner i'm glad to hear that the Clio Sport is on your 'to do list' for the future!

    For the mean time - there are some other good new & near-new Renaults you can get into - that will A) Still have warranty and B) Have pretty good prices for 2nd hand deals.

    I'm sure the previous cars mentioned by the others are perfectly good cars, but most would be out of their warranty and although they may seem like a good purchase - you could end up paying $$ for the up-keep of them. But once again, this is only a 'possible' scenario...

    Just as a bit of background on me, i'm only 22 myself & have been leasing my clio since new in February 2002, at age 20. Whenever I've had my clio serviced, I've been given loan cars by Waitara Renault. So i've had a fair bit of driving in a few of the Renault models whilst my car has been off the road. Sometimes this has been for 1 day, other times it's been for an entire week - depending on work carried out on my car.

    From the following list of cars - my highest recommendation for an automatic renault would have to go to the Scenic 2L Auto. I'm unsure how the 1.6L drives, but I'm sure it would still be fairly 'zippy'. The 2L, however has been quite an extroardinary thing to drive - and completely took me by surprise with it's get-up and go. It's almost a hatchback sized car - but with a slightly higher roof - making it much more roomy inside, and allowing for plenty of comfort for all passengers, front & rear. A very easy car to drive, with a very comfortable driving position also. You can even entertain your friends in the back seat - with the food trays! Yes, just like a qantas plane. The Scenic has a 'foldable' food tray, complete with a cup holder - so all those drive-thru's will be even more convenient!!!

    Here's a sample advert/price, which I found online
    Quote Originally Posted by carsales.com.au
    Vehicle 2003 RENAULT SCENIC Dynamique
    Price $26,750
    Kilometres 16,000
    Body 5 door Hatchback
    Colour dune green
    Transmission 4 speed Automatic
    Engine 4 cylinder Petrol Multi-point injected 2.0L (1998cc)
    Now this is a current model, and is at the 'middle level' for the 3 models of scenics in the range. Plus its only got 16,000k's on the clock. Down from the retail price $31,990 (not incl. on-roads, stamp duty etc). Saving you well and truly over $5240.

    I'm sure with such a big saving on this model, you'd be able to pick up the lower "Expression" model with more kilomtere's for even cheaper.

    In fact - I just did a very quick search on www.drive.com.au and came across this bargain! It's a 2001 scenic expression, with 30,000k's for only $21,990. Check the link below...!
    http://www.drive.com.au/used_cars/re...&pg=1&pp=2&d=0

    • Renault Clio Expression - 1.4L Auto - NEW price = $22,190
    • Renault Scenic 'Expression' - 2L Auto - NEW price = $29,990
    • Renault Scenic 'Priveledge' - 2L auto - NEW price = $31,990
    • Renault Scenic 'Dynamique' - 2L Auto - NEW price = $37,990


    The 1.4L Auto Clio Expression is not a bad drive either. I've had one on loan also - and I'm certain you could pick one up for under $16k. However, being a 1.4L - it's not as zippy as the 2L, but in comparison of the car's size and weight, it wouldn't be too much of a decrease.

    Either way - I recommend getting out there to test drive some cars and get an overview for yourself! Hey you may find yourself stepping into a brand spankin' new Clio Expression - you never know...

    See the attached photos for an example of the shapes of the scenic & clio (I'm sure you already know, but just incase!)
    Attached Thumbnails Attached Thumbnails What Car Should I Buy-62773_1_m.jpg   What Car Should I Buy-bn402a.jpg  
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    "#PW33RR" --- > "PW33RR" 2009 Mazda6 MXR-CD, 2.2L Turbo Diesel - More torque than the last! Geesssuz[/COLOR] HOT
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    Administrator GreenBlood's Avatar
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    Bob... may I call you Bob, Bob,

    Xantia V6, fits your criteria to a tee,

    Quote Originally Posted by bob the canibal
    My only real requirement is that it be an automatic and have enough power for over taking on highways etc and be reasonably cost efficent and reliable. As well as it be different and outside the box thats why im looking at french cars.
    Hey Alan... where'd you get that weird pic of the butchered XM

    Cheers
    Chris
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    "Déesse" Roland Barthes, 'Mythologies', 1957

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  17. #17
    Moderator Alan S's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by GreenBlood
    Bob... may I call you Bob, Bob,

    Xantia V6, fits your criteria to a tee,



    Hey Alan... where'd you get that weird pic of the butchered XM

    Cheers
    Chris
    It's a Heuilitz and I don't know how to tell you this but.....uhumm; you drive one and don't recommend them?



    Alan S
    If it ain't broke, use a 12" shifter.....that usually does the trick!!

  18. #18
    1000+ Posts Warwick's Avatar
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    For mine, I think the Xantia is a miles better car to own than an Xm. However I would rather an XSi 8 valve, and a couple of trips to Bali if it was to be a French car.
    Can you buy an Alfa 156 V6 for $20k yet. They are dropping like stones so they will be there soon. Ripper little car if it has a service history, and if you don't have to play catch-up on the service side.
    Yes, Alan that is a freaky XM. Photoshopped I think, looking at the rear window.
    "Now my dream lies shattered like the shards of a broken dream"

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    Administrator GreenBlood's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Alan S
    It's a Heuilitz and I don't know how to tell you this but.....uhumm; you drive one and don't recommend them?



    Alan S
    C'mon Alan, how could I recommend an XM to a guy named Bob...not just Bob but.... bob the canibal just doesn't fit does it, sorry Bob

    Seriously, first time Citroen owner with 20g to throw around, the Xantia would be a much better proposition IMO.

    Now tell me more about the weird pic, what's a bloody Heuilitz????

    Cheers
    Chris (much better name for someone who drives an XM, or Craig.. yeah Craig, Craig or Chris or.... not Bob, Bob it's too bumpy Bob Bob Bob)
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    "Déesse" Roland Barthes, 'Mythologies', 1957

    The Déesse has all the characteristics of one of those objects fallen from another universe that fed the mania for novelty in the eighteenth century and a similar mania expressed by modern science fiction: the Déesse is first and foremost the new Nautilus.

    (Umberto Eco [Ed], The History of Beauty, Rizzoli, NY, 2004)

  20. #20
    Fellow Frogger!
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    from memory, Heulitz is a coachbuilder - like Karmann - that does convertibles and other modifications (like stretch limos etc?), correct me if I'm wrong and leading ppl astray Alan.

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    Quote Originally Posted by GreenBlood
    Now tell me more about the weird pic, what's a bloody Heuilitz????
    I agree GB! The XM looks weird without the rear spoiler, but us Aussies were spoilt by only getting the "top model" Exclusive.

    Derek.

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    Just a quick addition to the Auto vs. Manual...

    If you cant drive a manual "cause its too tricky" or something like that, then i'd also recommend perseverence...

    I had crappy auto's from 17-21 (Mum hates manuals!, yep i had hand me down cars!), and when i converted the Hyundai to a manual it was SUPERB!

    Also the fuel economy difference was HUGE!!! went from 320km/tank (4sp auto) to about 400km/tank (5sp man)

    Good ur picking French though!

  23. #23
    Fellow Frogger!
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    Derek, you managed to get Taxi 3 with english subtitles? I could only find the french one at Amazon.fr. If so, where did you get it?
    Last edited by blue2th; 28th July 2004 at 12:51 AM.

  24. #24
    Tadpole
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    Quote Originally Posted by GreenBlood
    C'mon Alan, how could I recommend an XM to a guy named Bob...not just Bob but.... bob the canibal just doesn't fit does it, sorry Bob
    Hay dont worry my name aint even bob (real name is Euon) just an online alias ive been using for so long its more habbit than anything else to call myself by online.

    The XM is nice but looks a little complex for my first french car, although maybe one day.

    The alfa 156 is a great car warwick (looking at em for my mum who is buying a new car trying to talk her into a Peugeot 406 coupe but she now wants a convertiable) but i would not buy one without a good warranty cause they are still subject to alfa build quality.

    Yeah i might spin around my local Reanult dealer tommorw MY 4 and take a look at the clio and see what they have in terms of second hand scenics

  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by bob the canibal
    Hay dont worry my name aint even bob (real name is Euon) just an online alias ive been using for so long its more habbit than anything else to call myself by online.

    The XM is nice but looks a little complex for my first french car, although maybe one day.

    The alfa 156 is a great car warwick (looking at em for my mum who is buying a new car trying to talk her into a Peugeot 406 coupe but she now wants a convertiable) but i would not buy one without a good warranty cause they are still subject to alfa build quality.

    Yeah i might spin around my local Reanult dealer tommorw MY 4 and take a look at the clio and see what they have in terms of second hand scenics
    if you don't want complexity then i wouldn't even bother looking at cits.. they all share similar suspension setups etc...

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