Daily Driver Decisions....Need Honest Help

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Wayne Waldrep

Before I post a pic, do you have one of yours?
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I'm actually more amazed that you have nearly 400K miles on your mustang. That's impressive. Original motor?
Oh, not even close to the original motor..lol. I pulled the factory engine with 248,000 miles on it. It wouldn't die. I got Panhandle Performance to build me my dream engine back then. Loved it. Had to sell it. The engine in the car now is one I built for the '92 Feature Vert I had. I bought that car with 89k on it from the original owner. It was pouring oil out of the back and all over the clutch. I had money then so I decided I just had to rebuild it. I had a local fellow do the machining and assembly of the long block. It never has been right. It's now got a little over 100k on it (engine only). It's a .030 over engine with new pistons, etc. I wanted most everything stock on this engine so I had him go thru the heads. Has a stock cam, stock rockers, Cobra intake, stock mass air meter (swapped to mass air years ago when I had the Powerdyne). I have a relatively new set of LMR factory style pulleys on it. Can't believe I ran underdrives as long as I did.

The T5 in the car also came out of the '92 Feature. It's gonna be close to 200k for it. Same for the Centerforce Dual Friction. I moved it into the '88 at the same time. I have a spreadsheet with all the miles and exactly what I did. I'm just giving a close estimate. I'm anal enough that I even log in date and mileage every time I add oil. It's a curse. It does help me remember though. In 2011 or 2012 I put the front brake kit from LMR on it. It's the one that was $999 at the time. They don't show that kit anymore but it had the sn95 spindles, red SVE ('04 Cobra) calipers, 13" rotors, etc, etc. so the front brakes are good. The one item on the car that is basically untouched since it was one year old is the rear end. I put 3.55's in there in 1989 and have never touched it since. Well, I replaced brake shoes once but that's it. I checked them the other day when I was changing springs and the shoes are still fine. Amazing how little the rear brakes do. 31 years and only one shoe change. About 3 years ago several things went bad. I ended up with every single piece of the A/C system replaced with new parts. I even pulled the dash and put a new evap as well as every piece under the hood. That wasn't cheap. At about the same time my alternator went out and I ended up doing a new 130 Amp alternator swap with the good wiring kit. And sadly, not long after that, I started having cooling issues. I replaced every single piece of the cooling system. SVE aluminum radiator, fan clutch, fan, waterpump, thermostat, heater core (Motorcraft ONLY), hoses, and anything else I'm forgetting. All of it. The exhaust is also from the new parts I had bought for the Feature Vert. I have BBK ceramic shorties, BBK X-Pipe, and Dynomax catback. Exhaust....check.
Suspension is not great as you know from my spring post. It's not hurting anything other than a crappy ride. The interior is bone stock. I have some '05 seats that will be going in as soon as the friggin rain stops and the ground dries. My buddy that owns a body shop gave them to me just to get them out of his way. Nice power seats. Already test fit them and wired them to the factory seat plug. They work great.
So I know the question is "what's left?" I have that same question...lol. I constantly replace crappy headlight kits. They only last a year to a year and a half for me. Same with door lock actuators. I'm sick of buying those two things. There are a number of things that I need to do to the car right now. I'm just hoping that as some point I can just drive the thing. Oh....it needs painting so bad I'm embarrassed to even put a pic of it up. No way I can afford a paint job. I'll be doing that myself next time for sure. Even that paint job will be expensive. Never ending.
 

billison

I like tinted tail
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Park the mustang and buy a civic or a Saturn. Come back to fun cars when money is right. You’ll have the mustang later on, for now... get a 4 banger gas saver and get yourself right.
 
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billison

I like tinted tail
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I daily a 2005 Saturn l300. Nothing special. Good car most of the time
 

Rdub6

So while I wait to figure out my rear end issues
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‘02 F150 here (original owner, only 97000miles) New trucks just too damn expensive. Plus no car payment = more money into the mustang pot.

I gotta say though, after reading through all this, if I was in a no work situation, a second car would probably be the last thing I was worrying about.

Hopefully that situation doesn’t last, and things turn around sooner than later!!
 
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Wayne Waldrep

Before I post a pic, do you have one of yours?
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‘02 F150 here (original owner, only 97000miles) New trucks just too damn expensive. Plus no car payment = more money into the mustang pot.

I gotta say though, after reading through all this, if I was in a no work situation, a second car would probably be the last thing I was worrying about.

Hopefully that situation doesn’t last, and things turn around sooner than later!!
Well the idea isn't a second car. It's a car to drive instead of the mustang. It can be parked and not touched for as long as needed with no money out of my pocket. An inexpensive car that I don't have to work on all the time is the idea. This thread seems to have devolved into MPG cars and Saturns....hmmm. Let me put this to rest. I bought a brand new Saturn SL2 in '92 when the company was new. Ok car. Wife at the time drove it. Sold it to the local BMW place who sold it to a lady. Had 36k on it when I sold it and the second owner bought it. 3 or 4 months later she called me saying the engine locked up. She paid to have it replaced but that's not the end. A couple months after that the transmission went. She was not happy. I'm not sure what she was doing with it but it didn't work out for her. I will not own one. Thanks but no thanks.
Thanks for all the responses. You guys came thru with a good discussion, as usual. :)
 

billison

I like tinted tail
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Im on my 3rd Saturn . Drove the first 2 past 200k when I sold them. Just make sure they are after 98. The older ones burn oil. Any eco tech car will run forever as long as you keep oil in it
 
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Steel1

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Too bad your not closer to me I have a 2001 Civic coupe that needs the trans rebuilt.
Just about everything else has been done to the car, ie... timing belt,water pump, ps pump, tires,brakes etc.
Doesn't leak or burn anything, I'll be letting it go cheap!
Some good points made in this post, fyi I have 5 daily driven cars in my family 4 are Japanese 1 German.
 
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deathb4dismount

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I wouldn't recommend the crown vic to anyone as a daily driver unless it's being used as a work car. It's built to handle abuse, but if you aren't going to abuse it, what's the point? It's heavy, slow, noticeable body roll, terrible gas mileage, and uncomfortable. Small asian sedan or ford/mazda ranger would be my choice.
 

Wayne Waldrep

Before I post a pic, do you have one of yours?
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I wouldn't recommend the crown vic to anyone as a daily driver unless it's being used as a work car. It's built to handle abuse, but if you aren't going to abuse it, what's the point? It's heavy, slow, noticeable body roll, terrible gas mileage, and uncomfortable. Small asian sedan or ford/mazda ranger would be my choice.

not worth it....response deleted
 
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JasonRP

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I just read through this entire thread- and can't understand your logic dude. No offense- I'm honestly not trying to troll you or anything!

Numerous people have given you sound info (buy a used civic, and daily it for maximum cheapness).. You seem to have a rebuttle for every good miserly car suggested. "I'm convinced all Hondas have bad transmissions", "I know a guy who knows a guy- his Saturn was a pile!"... (paraphrasing here, but, seriously don't think I'm too far off the mark)...

You asked for honest opinions. I honestly believe, a 10 year old civic will be MUCH more reliable than a 10 year old crown vic or town car.. A 20 year old civic will be MUCH more reliable than a 20 year old crown vic or town car. Just the nature of the beast.. When I was a tech- I used to consider this often: perhaps the japanese cars are designed to break down much less frequently, but when they do, the parts are more $$$.. American cars break down much more frequently, but parts are cheap!

This was some 25 years ago- I think American cars are now much more reliable, but I think Japanese car parts have gotten cheap (for run-of-the-mill Civics).. Get a 4 banger civic (manual trans) that's not been racer boy'd out, and use if for simple transportation. It will get double the crown vic mileage, and be MUCH more reliable. You asked for an honest opinion, that's what I'd honestly do if I was in the same bind...

Don't like Hondas? Fine, insert toyota, or maybe mazda. I'd prefer Honda myself. I don't like the metal quality of the toyotas- but I'm being VERY picky. I'd personally stay away from VW and Mitsubishi.. Too many problems, and too expensive for parts.. I have a friend who swears by Kia- but his Kia's have all had stupid electrical problems- too many other cheap good cars out there for me to consider a Kia. Hundia (spelling?) seems to be enjoyed by many..
 
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Wayne Waldrep

Before I post a pic, do you have one of yours?
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Thanks to all. Made my mind up. I'm gonna just keep driving the Mustang.
 

Wayne Waldrep

Before I post a pic, do you have one of yours?
15 Year Member
Apr 14, 2003
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Cuba, AL
Numerous people have given you sound info (buy a used civic, and daily it for maximum cheapness).. You seem to have a rebuttle for every good miserly car suggested. "I'm convinced all Hondas have bad transmissions", "I know a guy who knows a guy- his Saturn was a pile!"... (paraphrasing here, but, seriously don't think I'm too far off the mark)...
At least get what I said correctly. I personally owned the Hondas, a brand new Saturn, and 3 or 4 Crown Vics. Had nothing to do with i know a guy who knows a guy. That's just a total sham of a comment. Like I said, decision made. I'm just staying the course and driving the Mustang.
 

JasonRP

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Glad you've made up your mind... My point about the Saturn is- it didn't blow up in your posession.. My sister had an SL1- she got 299k miles out of it, when it "locked up".. Turned out it was a cracked starter gear- and a replacement starter returned the car to service. I've personally owned Hondas that got me to 280k without any major issues- certainly no transmissions issues. Curious as to whether yours were automatics or manuals? BUT- this is moot point, and you've made your decision..
 

02 281 GT

Agreed...My wife has great Boobs
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I wouldn't recommend the crown vic to anyone as a daily driver unless it's being used as a work car. It's built to handle abuse, but if you aren't going to abuse it, what's the point? It's heavy, slow, noticeable body roll, terrible gas mileage, and uncomfortable. Small asian sedan or ford/mazda ranger would be my choice.
I gotta disagree with you on the uncomfortable part. Unless the only Crown Vics you've ever been in were P71 cars, I can't fathom your standards for comfort that would lead you to determine that a floaty boat like the Ford Panther platform is anything but comfortable.

My 1990 is like driving a La-Z-Boy down the highway.
 
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deathb4dismount

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I gotta disagree with you on the uncomfortable part. Unless the only Crown Vics you've ever been in were P71 cars, I can't fathom your standards for comfort that would lead you to determine that a floaty boat like the Ford Panther platform is anything but comfortable.

My 1990 is like driving a La-Z-Boy down the highway.

P71 8-16 hours a day. Which I believe is the one he was considering. Granted still my favorite sled ever, just woudn't be on my list for a daily driver.
 

General karthief

wonder how much it would cost to ship you a pair
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I get that you don't need a second car, I get the intermittent repair headache of the stang, and I get why you keep on driving the stang as your only ride, they are just too much fun and even a rag like mine attracts attention.
the crown vic with a pickup body is a cool idea even if it don't haul the mail anymore, stick an old ford f1 or a 60's ranger on it and it would be like driving a really cool cloud around.
 

dgollem

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Lots of good responses so here’s my 2 cents. It seems like the biggest part of your problem is money. You don’t have enough to keep the mustang and also get something reliable. A later model vic with 75000 should be more reliable than a 30 year old mustang with 400k on it. That said think with logic and not heart. If you can only afford one car, find out exactly what your mustang is worth. People ask to buy it but are they talking $500.00 or $5000.00. Since money is the issue and you seem to need/want a larger car if you can, sell the stang and get a vic and be ahead financially. Sad but true when you have more money you can always find another stang. If you can’t but the vic with the money from the stang then keep using the stang and saving until you can. As for the bike, do you get to use it enough to make sense financially if not sell it for the best price you can and put that money toward the vic or keeping the stang working. Toys cost money and when money gets tight toys gotta go, been there brother.