My mom bought this car brand new in 1996, when I was 10 years old. This was the car I learned to drive in. It was always pretty reliable, but unfortunately the clear coat started to wear off pretty early, making the car rather ugly from the beginning. My mom handed it down to me when I was 20, and I still drive it today. It's 20 years old now as I write this in 2016, and has 311,000 miles on the odometer. Still the original engine and auto transmission. Have never even changed the head gasket. I drive it every day, and at least a few times a year it makes a 4 to 8 hour round trip to the farther parts of the state. Has literally never broken down on me, the closest it has come to that was the starter hanging up, which I changed myself with an oem rebuilt one. The AC has broken a couple times, but it wasn't too hard to get it going again. You'd think the driver seat would have to be pretty worn and uncomfortable by now, but not at all. I have the cloth seats, and it's not even torn yet. Feels perfect still sitting on it. I changed all the coolant hoses in 2015 just to be safe, after one started to leak a little. I have the feeling this things not ready to die yet!
1996 Accord LX (no VTEC) with over 235,000 miles. The car has been to Lake Tahoe, to LA and long distance trips (over 300 miles). car still runs really well (except engine is a bit louder than it was when new - which is understandable). Great chassis, ample seating for 5 (cars nowadays are too large). When driving highways, gets around 32 mpg. When primarily city, gets around 23 mpg.
Really fun to drive considering it has only 130 hp and 139 lb-ft torque. The car never feels slow, as long as you are willing to rev the engine a bit while merging onto highways with short ramps. Wish newer Honda's maintained this generations fun-to-drive factor instead of being more Toyota-like in plushy ride.
- Manual transmission shifter has solid feel
(not light but nicely weighted)
- double wishbone front suspension
- rear multi-link rear suspension
(Camry's have single arm Macpherson struts - cheap)
- real hydraulic power-assisted steering
(not electric) which makes for lots of road feel - a must
- great visibility (lower beltline on the side)
Nothing. A bit of body roll when turning really fast (but that's like turning a 25 ramp at 45 mph). Air conditioning is a bit weak considering that summer is really hot in CA and my car is black (which doesn't help either)
I purchased my mint condition 1996 Honda Accord that was traded in at a dealership in 2005.
I have replaced the brakes, a brake line (63 dollars installed), starter (25 buck that i installed) and clutch actuator (13 bucks) over the past 6 years.
All repairs were less than 400 bucks total.
I only wish the power window motors were faster.
Mine is stock but minor tuner stuff can easily make it faster if your into that stuff.
If you find one with a good body and interior.. buy it.. fixing it will be cheap!
$2000 for a 210 hp Japanese Spec Engine. 100 hp over US spec stock.
Reliable, GREAT gas mileage, maintenance cost so low feels like i am stealing.
This car is fantastic. I bought it with 100,000 miles on it and have not had one problem at all. It starts up every time, always purrs like a kitten, accelerates quickly, and is incredibly mechanically sound. Handles great in the snow, and responds quickly to steering. Its accessories are kinda on the sketchy side, but all the doors lock and all the Windows work. All in all, a great little reliable car that's perfect for what I need. Not to mention its awesome gas mileage 14 years later. I will forever own hondas because of this car. The Japanese know what's up.
Fun to drive, reliable, good winter driving, accelerates great, gas mileage is awesome.
The accessories could have been more refined. I've had to fix the air conditioner, but that's it. It really does run like a well-oiled machine.
I've had this car for about 2 and a half years, it is now at just over 240,000 miles. I have taken it on a 22 hour drive back and forth from MI to TX a couple of times, and it still runs like it is brand new. I have never had any kind of issues with it at all. This is the most reliable car I've ever owned and I love it! Gas mileage is fantastic too. Would highly recommend this car to anyone!
Gas mileage, reliability, trunk access from back seat, fold down back seats
I honestly can't think of anything for its price range