This was my first car, back in '05. I was a teenager, and I came with all the neglect and rough riding that teenagers do. With that said, I have abused this car. I have driven it in to ditches, driven without an oil pan plug (25 miles with oil spewing the whole way!), gone almost 2 years with no oil change, and ramped the thing off a hill doing 90mph. The last one flattened the oil pan. And yet, the car put up with my retardation. The worst it has ever needed was new CV joints. Repairs are few and far between, and cheap when you need them. I still have the original engine and tranny, and both are somehow still going. This car will never let you down.
Air conditioning is so powerful, I have to turn it off for a bit even during the summer (with original freon!). Car is the most dependable thing I have ever seen, and I have put it through some paces. Power everything as far as options go, and the steering is sporty and responsive enough to make it a fun driver. Oh, and the mileage. It easily gets in the 35mpg area, which some cars have trouble achieving that today. Parts are cheap and easy to come by, and the car is simple enough that even I can make some small repairs. A great first car and hopefully my last car.
Heater is lackluster. The engine stays cold during the winter months, so bundle up or freeze. The automatic seatbelts could use a bit more dependability. And if you're bigger, the back seat will not be a comfortable fit.
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