Friday, December 14, 2012

The Bargains of Christmas - Mini and Full Size Vans

Christmas is just around the corner, and you're asking what car would you want to gift to yourself (if you are good this year) or to your loved ones. Your Ultimate Used Car Guide is here to solve the problem by giving you some recommendations.

So, how are these bargain picks are chosen? Here are some criteria that were followed:
  • A vehicle must be available between 2002-2011
  • Reported problems from owners are minimal, they are based from local forums and several of my reviews
  • Vehicle value must be excellent, since they are good bargains. 
  • Must offer a competitive advantage over its rivals and must fit the buyers needs in a category
  • Availability in the second hand market must be widespread
Yeah they are different in many ways: seating capacity, platform that was built, features, and engines; but they are united in two ways: the responsibility of ferrying people to their destination and possess sliding doors. So, in time for the Christmas season, let your Ultimate Used Car Guide pick the best choices in this category.

MINIVAN BEST BARGAIN: 2005-2011 Mitsubishi Grandis
Wait a minute, this does not have any sliding doors!? But why did I pick this as our best bargain for the minivan category? First of all, it competes with minivans such as the Previa and Town and Country, in terms of price, engine, and features. But then the first Mazda MPV was counted as a minivan, so this does justice right? The good thing is that prices are low, which is definitely a steal for those seeking a stylish and fun to drive minivan. 

Other bets:
2003-2011 Toyota Previa - This plush minivan, once a choice of affluent families, can be yours for the price of a brand new Toyota Innova. The ride may be firm, but the luxury amenities offset the firm ride. However, do watch out for units from Japan; they are converted and while some of them carry a diesel engine, symptoms may arrive on a later date (this comes on an unexpected time). 

2002-2011 Kia Carnival/Sedona - For those who are seeking a fuel efficient people mover for less, have this Korean minivan on your list. Why is the main reason? A standard diesel engine that has enough pull to carry 7 people inside. Just make sure to steer clear from 2002-early 2007 Carnivals and Sedonas that possess an automatic transmission, they tend to commit suicide and thus, an engine rebuilt is costly. The second generation model, launched in 2007, is the model to get due to the improved quality.

FULL SIZED VAN BEST BARGAIN: 2002-2011 Hyundai Starex/Grand Starex
Driving the Starex wont make you ashamed of yourself. You wont feel like a bus driver thanks to the hood located infront, the interior is designed like a car, and will gain you some street respect over a Hiace or Urvan. You wont feel like driving a group of commuters, but rather your extended family in style. The good thing is that, there are tons of examples in the used car market so getting one in good condition is high. Just remember to pick the CRDi models since they provide a lot of grunt.

Other bets:
2002-2011 Toyota Hiace - If you have a family driver, this is the one. The earlier incarnations have decent pull but if your budget tells you to get this, go for the Super Grandia models that possess a 3.0 engine. There is a gasoline engine but it would be best to stick with the diesel ones. The 2005 and later models are also good picks.

2002-2011 Nissan Urvan - Another good alternative to the Hiace, but less priced. They possess a very cheap maintenance costs, a very Antarctic cold air conditioning system, and also a decent number of units to pick. If you are planning to put up a rent-a-van business, this is one good prospect.

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