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A Savings Account on Wheels! by Sir Saves A Lot on 06/06/2011. Trim: 1998 Toyota Tercel CE, Owned 4 years.
Pros: Gas mileage, reliability, and longevity!
Cons: Can be uncomfortable on a long trip (3+ hours)
Overall review: Bought this beauty in 2007 at 140,625 miles (225,000 kms) and it is now at 178,125 miles (285,000 kms). In four years my total maintenance costs have included regular lube/oil/filter, timing belt, and new brake pads. The largest expense for this vehicle was buying a new set of tires and the funny thing is that tires for a tercel are generally the smallest on the market (usually meaning the cheapest). Speaking to the downsides, this car does look somewhat like a clown car (being in the subcompact category), is lacking in horsepower, and doesn't have the most comfortable seats around for long trips. Nevertheless, this car was not designed to be a sports car and can drive at 130 km/hr with ease. I have also driven it on two 15 hour, and 20+ five hour trips and at the worst have had a sore back for a day (much more often than not I'm fine). Hate paying $500 a month in car payments? Buy a tercel and pay less than $500 for an entire year! Will likely drive mine for another four years!
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