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Old 11-23-2007, 05:14 PM   #1
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Honda Gurus: I need your help

Found a couple of civics on craiglist, need a little help getting prepared before looking at them tomorrow morning.


1996 civic ex 2 door coupe, 1.6 sohc vtec engine,137k miles, 5 speed, all power options, a/c, moonroof, runs and drives excellant, no rust, newer snow tires, inspected till feb 2008, beat the crazy gas prices this thing averaged 35 mpg on the last 300 mile road trip. Car has a CLEAN carfax never been in a accident. BOOKS FOR 4000 on kbb.com ASKING $2200 or best offer email me at



car runs and drives great, gets 38mpg would make an excellant daily driver, has over 200k but was always maintaned and has no problems. car does have a little rust but other than that it is great. Interior is really clean. These older Civics are getting pretty hard to find on the road these days let alone the Si model which has alot of sporty features. ASKING $1200 obo come and drive you will not be dissapointed. call me at


Thats the text and photos, does this look good to you guys? What do I need to check on these? What problems are they prone to?
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Old 11-23-2007, 06:38 PM   #2
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my 0.02
The EX is newer, has air bags and less mileage than the Si. Not sure, but it is probably geared more for "normal" driving than the Si. Only thing is that why when it blue books for 4k is he trying to sell it for 2.2k? Timing belts are key with Hondas.
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Old 11-23-2007, 06:42 PM   #3
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Of those two, the EX is the better deal, hands down. Do ask if the timing belt was replaced, and if he doesn't give you paperwork for it, get it done asap.
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Old 11-23-2007, 06:43 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Red View Post
my 0.02
The EX is newer, has air bags and less mileage than the Si. Not sure, but it is probably geared more for "normal" driving than the Si. Only thing is that why when it blue books for 4k is he trying to sell it for 2.2k? Timing belts are key with Hondas.
2 very good points, Thank you sir.

BTW, there was a 1970 jeep on CL too that looked so cool it was tempting... but no big projects allowed right now.
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Old 11-23-2007, 07:16 PM   #5
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Also, watch out for accident damage on the newer EX! Many times that you see an 'irresistable deal' on these cars, they are salvaged cars that have been in a fairly serious accident. Check for a salvage title, and look carefully for accident damage (ie under the hood, in the trunk, mis-matching paint, body panels that don't line up properly, etc). Also, test drive the car and make sure it does not pull, vibrate, etc. Even if it has a clean Carfax, you just never know. There are always ways of getting around this. Also, there is the possiblity of mechanical or emissions problems. A 1996 EX for $2200 just sounds fishy to me.
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Old 11-23-2007, 07:50 PM   #6
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the EX for sure. Better aero, scanguage compatable, fewer miles (not really a big issue with hondas, but hey) Check for rust on the rear quarter panel and inside the rear wheel well, that seems to be a fairly common rust-starting-point for hondas.
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Old 11-25-2007, 06:12 AM   #7
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You have probably gone to look at them already, but I'd say they are about even. based on price. I'd make offers on both and see what they'd accept and take the better deal of the 2.
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Old 11-25-2007, 03:16 PM   #8
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I would go with the hatch back, as it sits it gets at least 3mpg better, and alot of people clame to get 40mpg or better out of them and a trasmision swap would give you better highway gearing giving you great mileage, and being a hatch back you can fit almost anything inside of it. and if you show up with $900 in cash I'm sure it would be yours, altho if you show up with $2000 cash, the EX could fallow you home as well, that is assuming that both of them are solid cars, either way once you get them do a full tune up, assume that nothing has been mantained in the last 90,000 miles.
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Old 11-28-2007, 07:16 AM   #9
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The EX it is.

Went and looked at 7(!) hondas on saturday, including the si and ex above. I won't even bother talking about the others since they were asking 5-7k and they were never in consideration.

The si was HOT. The interior was mint. It looked like it had been stored for 10 years not driven for 200k mi. All the records were there too. But... rusted through on the wheel wells, door sills and rear floor pan. And opening the hatch, there wasn't enough room for the stuff from one kid much less three.

The EX (not a VX, or an HX as I hoped) was in ok shape. No rust. Mechanicly looked good (neither had had the timing belts replaced) but there were several unattractive things about it. 2 of the speakers were blown. The drivers side door panel was loose. The wiper seal on the drivers side door came off when you rolled the window up. The box around the ignition switch was just hanging there unbolted. The needle light on the dash didn't work, neither did the cruise control. The windshield had two huge arcs from windshield wipers in it. It just didn't show well. So the price had been dropping every time someone looked at it and didn't buy.

So.... the previous owner cranked the cheap aftermarket stereo and blew the speakers. A friend tried to "fix" them and screwed up the door panel and window seal. As well as trying to put a new bulb in the instrument cluster, which he couldn't handle either. Maybe he did change the wiper blades... albeit too late.

Oh... and there's nail polish all over the otherwise ok dark grey interior.

And I got a 4k car for 2k.
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Old 11-28-2007, 11:25 AM   #10
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Congrats, needs a bit of work, but on the scale of things not too bad.
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