Don’t buy a used Audi Quattro AWD Turbo wagon with only 100,000 miles, even if it does look like a James Bond car with its red cockpit lights. It will cost you at least $4,000 in repairs in a year’s time. Listen to me. You can’t make a new car out of an old one, no matter how much money you gadget and gear into it. Struts, 02 censors, water hoses…nothing is cheap or easy here. You can’t get to the engine. So I'm telling you, don’t buy one--unless of course it’s mine, and then you’re probably set for a few years. A $6500 car turned into a $10,500 one in the snap of a wallet. Don’t try this at home.
But I’ll make you a deal—what you really, really want is a previously enjoyed Volvo XC V70 cross-country AWD turbo Volvo wagon, much better on gas mileage and it gets sick less. A 2002 with 125,000 miles when I bought it, all that crapped out so far was the ignition coil, a mere $600 job (or $2,000 if you’re keeping tabs at home). She’s a sweet, smooth ride much like that of the Lexus. Yes, she’s foreign, has the cutest darn accent, but is paranoid-esque in safety. She is comforting with all her airbags ready to pounce. You’ll feel like a boxer in a ring, able to stick your nose out without fear of landing a damaging blow. She’ll even ride on cheap gas without a cough or complaint. Her leather will stay squeaky. She’ll keep her secrets close to the chest, like the battery tucked in her backpack. She’ll message you way too often though, like a jealous girlfriend: “Time for regular service” she exclaims when she wants attention, but it’s only a bulb out (good luck getting to that). If you don’t heed her, she gets pushy. Unfortunately, she’s a bit too deep, and she’ll make you work for it. But she’s ever so polite and will stop messaging once you give her a pat. Yes, she’s for sale too, because she has a chance of selling. She’s a steal. Just hope she starts when you come take her for a spin, unlike the other day.