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Old 11-02-2007, 06:40 AM   #11
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I dunno, $2600 for a 16 year old car seems like a lot of money to me. The Insight, simply because it is so rare and different wins in the appeal category. I think that if you could talk the VX person down to 2k even, then it would be a decent deal. Speaking simply dollars and cents though, it would take a lot of really good tanks on the Insight to justify the 4-5k premium you would be paying on the car.

I don't know your financial situation though, so my answer may not be very helpful.

My personal situation sounds much different than yours, as I have no debt, no one to support, and freedom to choose whatever type of car I drive... which just so happens to be auto auction wreckers.

Anyway, regardless of which car you go with, you are sure to see much better mileage than what you were getting in the Fit.
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Old 11-02-2007, 06:48 AM   #12
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VX, me boy.

Though there's no guarantee that it won't also have gremlins like the FrankenCivic.

And BTW, the Insight's fuel economy potential is much greater in city driving than on the highway. It's a flat out P&G monster, if that style of driving is your cup of tea.

Also worth noting that if your driving is mostly sub/urban, the VX may not get you much better MPG than a CX, since the VX is all about lean burn at cruise.
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Old 11-02-2007, 06:55 AM   #13
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Since the VX is cheaper, you can fix everything on it yourself, and it will help your current debt situtation, go with it.

I think the VX is a great car when you want to avoid payments but still have a great, reliable, and gas saving car. That's why I'm keeping it.
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Old 11-02-2007, 06:55 AM   #14
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VX, me boy.

Though there's no guarantee that it won't also have gremlins like the FrankenCivic.

And BTW, the Insight's fuel economy potential is much greater in city driving than on the highway. It's a flat out P&G monster, if that style of driving is your cup of tea.

Also worth noting that if your driving is mostly sub/urban, the VX may not get you much better MPG than a CX, since the VX is all about lean burn at cruise.
You make an excellent point. I do make road trips to Las Vegas about twice a year, however, so the VX will come in handy there. adding an extra 10mpg to a vehicle and doing it for the price of 6 months of car payments isn't that bad.
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Old 11-02-2007, 07:11 AM   #15
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I suppose the really big question is for the kind of driving that you will PRIMARILY do, what is the FE difference between the two cars (or even 3 if you consider a non-VX Civic) times the number of miles that you will drive times the estimated fuel cost?

If the resulting cost difference isn't enough to pay for a car that you are not sure you can fix yourself, or be comfortable paying the stealership to fix...or to even pay for monthly.

To use myself as an example...my car gets 26mpg average...and I drive it about 12,000 miles per year...so I use about 462 gallons of fuel. If I go buy a newer (or different car) that gets 50 mpg, I drop my fuel use to 240 gallons. If fuel jumps to $6 a gallon, that mythical newer car will save me about $1320 a year...or $110 a month. Kinda hard to find a car (with payments) that I will spend that much or less to make it worthwhile, if FE is the only concern. (fingers crossed) If fuel stays around $3/gallon for a while, then I am only saving $55 a month.
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Old 11-02-2007, 07:31 AM   #16
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I suppose the really big question is for the kind of driving that you will PRIMARILY do, what is the FE difference between the two cars (or even 3 if you consider a non-VX Civic) times the number of miles that you will drive times the estimated fuel cost?

If the resulting cost difference isn't enough to pay for a car that you are not sure you can fix yourself, or be comfortable paying the stealership to fix...or to even pay for monthly.

To use myself as an example...my car gets 26mpg average...and I drive it about 12,000 miles per year...so I use about 462 gallons of fuel. If I go buy a newer (or different car) that gets 50 mpg, I drop my fuel use to 240 gallons. If fuel jumps to $6 a gallon, that mythical newer car will save me about $1320 a year...or $110 a month. Kinda hard to find a car (with payments) that I will spend that much or less to make it worthwhile, if FE is the only concern. (fingers crossed) If fuel stays around $3/gallon for a while, then I am only saving $55 a month.
of course fuel is NOT the only cost though.... Let's run the numbers with this $2600 vehicle.

Currently I pay $360/mo and full insurance for my Fit. Let's call it an even $400/mo compared to liability only insurance on any car I purchase.

400/mo x 48 months left on the Fit = $19200. That doesn't take into account fuel costs at all. I'm getting approx 35 mpg in the Fit. Some highway, mostly city driving.

VX will cost $2600. Add the plane ticket and gas home... plus some beef jerky and a 12 pack of diet coke... $3000? at $400/mo, this will have paid for itself in 7.5 months. Which means that over the next four years I'll save myself $16200, or $4050/year. This is NOT including fuel costs, or maintenance costs.... most of which I can do myself on this car.

assuming I drive 10k/year (this year was 13k) there will also be a slight amount saved due to fuel economy as well.

ALso having the spare engine in the garage just means I'll have one less thing to worry about.
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Old 11-02-2007, 07:35 AM   #17
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Personally, I would get the VX, or just about any other good condition civic, take the parts you can use off Franken, sell the rest, drive nicely, keep it tuned up, and bank the rest of the money to dump the debt. Then, and *if* the manufacturers ever pull their collective heads outta their butts and start making some really really good cars that are not just rehashed (and enhanced) examples of 1920's technology, then invest in that in a few years.

(BTW: that is my plan too...)
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Old 11-02-2007, 08:30 AM   #18
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I would say to go with the VX as well. My only concern is
Quote:
Originally Posted by Matt Timon
A new Cat for an obd1 Civic VX would be cheap.
.
The OEM Cat for the VX is not cheap. Even if you go with the 96-00 Civic replacements on ebay. They typically are around $200 dollars once shipping is taken into account.

I saw that you have a spare one already, which is good, so this may not be a huge concern in your case. It wasn't a concern in my case either as I went with a $40 shipped SS header from eBay and a new Universal Cat from Parts Plus for ~$50. So I was able to replace The Cat on my VX (which had over 330K miles on it) for less than $100.

One other problem with the 92-95 Civics is that they too leak when it rains. The areas of concern are:
  • The rear tail lights (can be fixed by making or buying a new tail light gasket
  • The windshield corners (only if the windshield was replaced poorly)
  • The passenger side cowl (under the windshield wiper cowl) which can be repaired yourself by adding some sealant to the frame joint under the cowl and behind the fender. Honda really doesn't honor this as a recall repair anymore.

Along the lines of your airbag issue... the 92-93 Civics only had the drivers' airbag. The 94+ Civics had both the drivers' and passengers' side airbags. you probably know most of this already from reading the boards and doing your own research, but I'm just bringing it to the light for all to see. Also, Honda has a lifetime guarantee on seatbelts. Any tears or retraction issues that aren't caused by abuse, and the seatbelt assemblies will be replaced for free.

Since you are so mechanically inclined, your thoughts of the VX being a transitional vehicle would be perfect. I am starting to see my VX in the same light since my second child is due in February. I really would like to have four doors, but I'm resourceful and can tip my seat forward easy enough.


So, in conclusion, my stand on your dilemma would be: Go for the VX now and save them money for what will suit your needs down the road.

Cheers,
Tom
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Old 11-02-2007, 08:59 AM   #19
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I would say to go with the VX as well. My only concern is .
The OEM Cat for the VX is not cheap. Even if you go with the 96-00 Civic replacements on ebay. They typically are around $200 dollars once shipping is taken into account.
Well, "cheap" in this instance is relative... $200 for one cat is MUCH cheaper than $1400 for two.
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Old 11-02-2007, 09:36 AM   #20
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I am starting to see my VX in the same light since my second child is due in February. I really would like to have four doors, but I'm resourceful and can tip my seat forward easy enough.
Heretic! You almost sound... European!

Surely what you meant to say was: "clearly I now need a full size minivan or 5000lb SUV"
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