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View Full Version : How many miles does a typical car last w/o major problems?


JEDI
01-22-2011, 07:36 PM
assume you follow the maintenance schedule in your manual (and not the ripoff dealer recommendations).

i deem minor problems as starter, alternator.
major problem = engine, transmission

How many miles does a typical car last w/o major problems?

edit:
cars made this century

Bignate603
01-22-2011, 07:40 PM
If you do all the maintenance I'd consider any major repair (ie engine or transmission need a full rebuild) before 200,000 miles to be bad.

Vic Vega
01-22-2011, 08:15 PM
I'd agree, 200k for a car built in the last 15 years.

A failure before then is going to be indicative of 1 of 3 things: abusive driving, or manufacturing defect or environmental influence (like a crash or hitting an object in the road). The chances of normal wear causing a failure these days are pretty low for non wear items (engine, transmission, rear-end, etc).

My daily driver is a 1996 and has 160k miles on the original engine, transmission suspension, etc, etc. Runs like a top with no end in site. The car is well cared for by myself.

Marlin1975
01-22-2011, 08:49 PM
Most engines, internal parts, will hold well to 200k easy if there is no design issue and maintaince was done.

The auto trans is a whole other issue. It really depends on how it is used and the temps it is used in. Heat and heavy loads will tear a auto trans up real quick. Auto trans can last 200k or barly make it to 100k depending on factors.

Howard
01-22-2011, 09:12 PM
The guibo joints and center bearing on the driveshaft on my '05 CTS were completely gone at about 105k km.

punjabiplaya
01-22-2011, 10:03 PM
for stuff that doesn't require a lift or hoist to fix or replace, 100k easy, 200k if maintained

SyndromeOCZ
01-22-2011, 10:47 PM
I'd say 200-250k. My family has had a bunch of vehicles with 250k miles on them. Although the most impressive one is the 93 dodge cummins, over 350k miles original motor and tranny, no rebuilds. The motor still runs very strong and can tow a 50 ft 5th wheel without any trouble.

Jumpem
01-23-2011, 08:19 AM
My Fit went 88k with only minor brake issues. I'm up to 45k on my Outback with no problems. I don't plan to chance it once the 100k warranty is up.

Vic Vega
01-23-2011, 08:24 AM
My Fit went 88k with only minor brake issues. I'm up to 45k on my Outback with no problems. I don't plan to chance it once the 100k warranty is up.

So, you finance another new car for 30k and lose 15k the first two years in depreciation... 15k could cover whatever repair cost you may have.

Paperlantern
01-23-2011, 08:24 AM
Yeah 200 - 250k should be expected from any vehicle. My 1999 Camry has 209,000 on it, also with no end in sight. A few minor issues have arisen... the blower fan only works on two speeds, and the driver window has worn out to the point of not going up all the way anymore on the first try. All fixable, but stuff im just living with right now. Car runs like a top otherwise.

Just put brand new tires on it, and have no doubt i will probably need at least another set before it dies or i sell it.

Jumpem
01-23-2011, 08:26 AM
So, you finance another new car for 30k and lose 15k the first two years in depreciation... 15k could cover whatever repair cost you may have.

I drive 30k annually, and trade in the car before the 100k extended warranty is up.

Vic Vega
01-23-2011, 08:58 AM
I drive 30k annually, and trade in the car before the 100k extended warranty is up.

It's your money.

Jumpem
01-23-2011, 09:06 AM
It's your money.

Yup. I plan to have a car payment until the day I die. There are several reasons I get a new car every two and half to three years: mechanical reliability, rust, new safety features.

We do have just a single car between us though. And when we move closer to work, I will switch from buying to leasing. That should cut my payment by a third.

ThatsABigOne
01-23-2011, 09:51 AM
My 1998 Acura 3.5 RL is still working fine after 165K miles. It did need routine maintenance to get that far such as timing belt, water pump, and I have a pretty heavy foot.

Bignate603
01-23-2011, 09:52 AM
Yeah 200 - 250k should be expected from any vehicle. My 1999 Camry has 209,000 on it, also with no end in sight. A few minor issues have arisen... the blower fan only works on two speeds, and the driver window has worn out to the point of not going up all the way anymore on the first try. All fixable, but stuff im just living with right now. Car runs like a top otherwise.

Just put brand new tires on it, and have no doubt i will probably need at least another set before it dies or i sell it.

My old '99 camry had the driver's side window do the exact same thing until it completely failed and wouldn't go up the last 2 inches. I swapped out the regulator myself with a friend and it was a PAIN. Doable at home, it doesn't require any special tools, but you're going to need a second person to help you remove and support the glass.

shortylickens
01-23-2011, 10:14 AM
Question does not have an answer.

What year? Many cars made in the 70's/80's are shit and they fell apart long before 100 thousand.
What brand/model? For a long time European cars have been much better than American. And Japanese cars are usually in between. But some specific brands are much different from their national norm. And some models within particular brands were much better or worse than their brothers.

As for me: 2003 Chevy S-10. Piece of shit. Needed all kinds of work around the 30 thousand mark. I dont doubt the engine will go to half a million miles, but the body will probably be falling apart by 100K. Every time I turn around it needs more work. As of this past year I have spent as much on a mechanic as half the purchase price of the vehicle (16 grand). And the super duper gold plus service plan never covered anything in 4 years.
Just noticed a problem this past week on the ice that I never noticed. In fact I may need to make a thread on it cuz no one else ever talks about the issue.

Never buying another GM product. If the engine lasts forever and the body dies quickly I did not get my money worth.

My dads 91 Toyota pickup has 300,000 on it, according to my cousin Alisha. She got it when he died. And unlike most females she takes good care of it.

JulesMaximus
01-23-2011, 10:22 AM
Man, I haven't had a car payment in a few years. I only have 95,000 miles on my car and plan to keep it for a couple more years at least. Nothing major has gone wrong with it so far, it is a 2003 Maxima.

Tristicus
01-23-2011, 10:39 AM
Never buying another GM product.

Psh, your loss. My friend has an S10 that has had the living shit beat out of it, and it still runs up and down the hills in NH fine.

JEDI
01-23-2011, 10:39 AM
Question does not have an answer.

What year? Many cars made in the 70's/80's are shit and they fell apart long before 100 thousand.
What brand/model? For a long time European cars have been much better than American. And Japanese cars are usually in between. But some specific brands are much different from their national norm. And some models within particular brands were much better or worse than their brothers.


updated op to say cars made this century.

my car is a mazda3 made in japan and shipped to the usa. the mazda6 is made in the usa.
i expect the mazda3 to last longer than the mazda6

shortylickens
01-23-2011, 10:57 AM
Psh, your loss. My friend has an S10 that has had the living shit beat out of it, and it still runs up and down the hills in NH fine.

It was my loss when I bought it.

You're friend wanna switch cars?

thescreensavers
01-23-2011, 11:38 AM
I am just afraid of the Auto Tranny, I change the fluid in 30k mile intervals. But I am thinking I should save up and add a bigger cooler for it. And an Inline filter since my tranny only has a screen

Meghan54
01-23-2011, 12:47 PM
200K is reasonable for any vehicle these days with a bare minimum of maintenance.

Our '02 Blazer has 230K on it......outside a new cat. converter, alternator, and fuel pump, it's been trouble free. But all the aforementioned problems started after hitting 180K, so those parts did last quite a while. It still runs great, tows like a champ, and have no intentions of retiring it anytime soon.

Lack of car payments for 5 years=$$ in the bank.....so much so that we could reasonably replace both the transmission and engine and still be far, far ahead of someone who just has to have payments all the time.

HeXen
01-23-2011, 01:05 PM
problem is every car within each model can vary along with driving habits. i've seen catalyc converters go bad within 3 miles of taking it off the lot brand new! it was a dodge though...thats why

RU482
01-23-2011, 06:29 PM
So, you finance another new car for 30k and lose 15k the first two years in depreciation... 15k could cover whatever repair cost you may have.

what year is this? I haven't seen cars depreciate that fast in a while

Howard
01-23-2011, 07:15 PM
what year is this? I haven't seen cars depreciate that fast in a while
90s domestics

HeXen
01-23-2011, 07:38 PM
what year is this? I haven't seen cars depreciate that fast in a while

my 05 still looks new with under 40k miles and i can't find any dealer to trade in for more than 10k. i guess it depends though, but seems mine depreciated alot or dealers just try to rip me off...either way:P

RU482
01-24-2011, 01:09 AM
yeah, but he is stating an 09 model depreciating from 30k to 15k. just ain't true in my shopping adventures.

WhipperSnapper
01-24-2011, 01:28 AM
My wife had a '94 Olds Achieva which we kept from 0 to about 155,000 miles. The engine and tranny were fine but everything else around it just started to fall apart. The final straw was when it needed a new fuel pump and filter which would have required removing the fuel tank at a cost of about $600. (Why, why would you put the fuel pump and filter in the gas tank?)

T2urtle
01-24-2011, 06:52 AM
stating needing a engine isn't going much help.

is a head gasket considered needing a engine? Broken timing belts can go at anytime. you can have a failure in the thermostat that a driver never knew and then overheated the motor, now it will need a engine but if a thermostat was replaced it wouldn't need one. A head gasket replacement might be like $600 when you can get a used motor for the same cost in SOME cases.

Me personally any car in the past 10 years should make it to 100k for the most part problem free. I've seen 3 100+k cars in my family go up and never needed a serious repair. I think there was a good chance they can make it to least 175k.

exar333
01-24-2011, 07:24 AM
Question does not have an answer.

What year? Many cars made in the 70's/80's are shit and they fell apart long before 100 thousand.
What brand/model? For a long time European cars have been much better than American. And Japanese cars are usually in between. But some specific brands are much different from their national norm. And some models within particular brands were much better or worse than their brothers.

As for me: 2003 Chevy S-10. Piece of shit. Needed all kinds of work around the 30 thousand mark. I dont doubt the engine will go to half a million miles, but the body will probably be falling apart by 100K. Every time I turn around it needs more work. As of this past year I have spent as much on a mechanic as half the purchase price of the vehicle (16 grand). And the super duper gold plus service plan never covered anything in 4 years.
Just noticed a problem this past week on the ice that I never noticed. In fact I may need to make a thread on it cuz no one else ever talks about the issue.

Never buying another GM product. If the engine lasts forever and the body dies quickly I did not get my money worth.

My dads 91 Toyota pickup has 300,000 on it, according to my cousin Alisha. She got it when he died. And unlike most females she takes good care of it.

Maybe this has something to do with it?

http://forums.anandtech.com/showthread.php?t=2137613

ichy
01-24-2011, 07:25 AM
I just 138k miles on my 2000 Ford Focus. It has given me a fair share of minor hassles (broken radiator hoses, engine mounts gone bad, brake issues) but no major engine or tranny problems. Not bad for car that I bought with 55k miles on it for $4,000.

hanoverphist
01-24-2011, 11:46 AM
my 01 dodge ram just flipped over to 198K on the original 318cu motor. love that truck. only huge repair ive done is the steering system, and that was my fault for not taking care of a leaky PS hose and then the pump leaking (due to not taking care of the hose). while i do regular maintenance on the truck, i do drive it hard, and abuse it now and again. its a work truck first, but i use it for everything. i put about 500-800 miles a week on that thing.

jjmIII
01-24-2011, 12:10 PM
I think a little after 100k too many small things go. Sure you don't need an engine or trans, but other items on a modern vehicle add up quick.

Go get a new set of spark plugs in a V8 F150. I pd $300 (parts & labor) and that was a great deal. If the coils go, and you need wires along with the plugs it's closer to $1200. Then on a brake job you end up needing calipers...it goes on, and on.

I have 85k on my 2005 F150, and hope to get a newer one in the next year, year and a half.

After 120k, I think it's best to make the car/truck someone elses vehicle.

http://www.f150online.com/forums/garage/2005-Ford-F150-1072-jjmIII.html

Tristicus
01-24-2011, 12:27 PM
Maybe this has something to do with it?

http://forums.anandtech.com/showthread.php?t=2137613

Lulz.

avonman
01-25-2011, 06:51 AM
I got a 96 Saturn SW1 with 196,000 and so far no major repairs. There is a plastic piece that connects the stick shift to cables that broke, part alone was $250(part is attached to cable)! Friend who is a mechanic found a part in his shop to fix it for $50.

zsdersw
01-25-2011, 01:17 PM
No problems on my '05 Acura TL.. now at 117k miles. To be safe, though, I did have the timing/accessory belts and water pump changed at around 100k miles.. as recommended. Transmission fluid changed every 30k miles. Full synthetic oil change roughly every 5k miles.

And I'm very much lead-footed.

Bignate603
01-25-2011, 02:26 PM
Maybe this has something to do with it?

http://forums.anandtech.com/showthread.php?t=2137613

:biggrin:

The fact that the truck is still running after that is a testament to how well it's built.

simonizor
01-25-2011, 05:28 PM
Yup. I plan to have a car payment until the day I die. There are several reasons I get a new car every two and half to three years: mechanical reliability, rust, new safety features.

We do have just a single car between us though. And when we move closer to work, I will switch from buying to leasing. That should cut my payment by a third.

Your financial plan makes no sense. If you took that money that you were putting into your car payment and put it into a "car repair fund," you would have enough money in there to go on vacation and still repair your car. If you wash your car frequently, it's probably not going to rust before you get to 100k. New safety features? Such as? There hasn't really been a whole lot going on in that department for a while now other than back up cameras, sensors, etc.

Meghan54
01-25-2011, 09:42 PM
(Why, why would you put the fuel pump and filter in the gas tank?)



First, guess you've not bought many cars built in the last 35 years with fuel injection. If you had, you'd have realized almost without exception all cars have their fuel pumps in the gas tank.

Second, the fuel filter is NOT in the tank. True, the fuel pump has a strainer or two attached to it, but they're not the filter by any stretch of the imagination. The strainer(s), or socks as some call them, are just a "coarse" type strainer used to prevent large chunks of crap from entering the pump. The true fuel filter is mounted somewhere along the body rail, in line in the gas line.

CraigRT
01-25-2011, 10:26 PM
problem is every car within each model can vary along with driving habits. i've seen catalyc converters go bad within 3 miles of taking it off the lot brand new! it was a dodge though...thats why

Yeah, clearly Chrysler manufacturers the catalytic converter :D
Even if they did... Shit happens.

shortylickens
01-26-2011, 06:04 AM
Maybe this has something to do with it?

http://forums.anandtech.com/showthread.php?t=2137613

I dont deal in maybe's.

The car was falling apart long before I ever used 4 low.
Nice try though, keep at it!

Bignate603
01-26-2011, 07:39 AM
I dont deal in maybe's.

The car was falling apart long before I ever used 4 low.
Nice try though, keep at it!

The 4-lo thing may not be what caused the other stuff but it does speak to how you treat your car.

ShawnD1
01-26-2011, 10:46 AM
The 4-lo thing may not be what caused the other stuff but it does speak to how you treat your car.

Unfortunately that's how many people treat their car. Used vehicles with full time AWD (Subarus) often work fine, but cars with the more complicated 4WD systems are almost always fucked beyond belief. People don't seem to understand that there is a reason the company included a switch to turn the system on and off. They really need to put a warning right on the dash saying not to leave it in 4WD.

This is also part of the reason Jeep vehicles have such a bad reputation. Lots of Jeeps come with the real deal 4WD with partial locking or clutch type differentials. You're not supposed to leave them on. Jeeps are widely regarded as chick vehicles, so you can guess how often the 4WD system is left on even when it's dry pavement in the peak of summer.

Tristicus
01-26-2011, 12:50 PM
Unfortunately that's how many people treat their car. Used vehicles with full time AWD (Subarus) often work fine, but cars with the more complicated 4WD systems are almost always fucked beyond belief. People don't seem to understand that there is a reason the company included a switch to turn the system on and off. They really need to put a warning right on the dash saying not to leave it in 4WD.

This is also part of the reason Jeep vehicles have such a bad reputation. Lots of Jeeps come with the real deal 4WD with partial locking or clutch type differentials. You're not supposed to leave them on. Jeeps are widely regarded as chick vehicles, so you can guess how often the 4WD system is left on even when it's dry pavement in the peak of summer.

Do you ever stop spewing shit?

ShawnD1
01-26-2011, 02:17 PM
Do you ever stop spewing shit?
I can't hear what you're saying. I left the 4WD on and it's making this weird grinding noise when I take corners.

PricklyPete
01-26-2011, 02:31 PM
If you do all the maintenance I'd consider any major repair (ie engine or transmission need a full rebuild) before 200,000 miles to be bad.

Agreed.

biggie2200
10-22-2012, 11:09 PM
It has 769xxx miles and still has the stock 2.5 ironduke 4cyl and stock 5speed. The body is still solid. The only major problems I've had with it is radiator, window motors and brake lines. I've had it since it was brand new and i have a very heavy foot

hans007
10-22-2012, 11:10 PM
My 2010 Audi a4 had a fuel injector fail after 9000 miles. Its cat failed. It probably needs a new engine or at least all the piston rings or block replaced now at 45k

My 2005 tsx had its starter fail after 35k. But nothing else until 65k when I sold it.

Both maintained as the manual said. I guess I'd expect more from newer cars but I could just be unlucky

jagec
10-23-2012, 12:31 AM
I just 138k miles on my 2000 Ford Focus.

You just what?

MagickMan
10-23-2012, 05:34 AM
I put 260k miles on a V6 Accord, back in the day, with only regular maintenance. However, when it finally did start falling apart it pretty much disintegrated.

ichy
10-23-2012, 06:02 AM
You just what?

*just hit

Currently up to about 165k miles.

cutlassman
11-01-2012, 12:51 AM
My first car was a 1991 Ford Escort gt. I got it when it had 168k in 2002. I kept up with Scheduled maintenance i even went a lil above and beyond and waxed it a couple times. Last month the auto tranny died :-(. But it had a lil over 268k. The biggest repair I did before it died on me was a replaced a alternator. Right now I'm driven a 2002 ford escort zx2 S/r. With 116k I have no doubt I will hit 200k on it

jpeyton
11-01-2012, 01:24 AM
If it's a 4-cylinder Honda, probably 1-2 decades.

7window
11-01-2012, 08:01 AM
I would say 200k with no abuse

waggy
11-01-2012, 09:08 AM
My ex's 1996 ford escort is at 188k miles and running great. though we baby the cars. She is thinking of getting a new vehicle next summer.

my shitty taurus (posted many times about the vehicle) is at 117k and is finally running great after about 8k worth of work..(i only paid 2k of it the dealership paid the rest).

though i am thinking of getting a SUV or Van.


edit: i had a 1983 honda accord. i purchased it for $50 with 239k miles. i drove it a for roughly 1.5 years (never changed oil..did add some a few times). in that time i drove it a ton. it had like 270k miles

sold it for $400 heh

Saint Nick
11-01-2012, 09:30 AM
I hope my Cavalier lasts at least to 250k. At about 115 right now.l

jagec
11-01-2012, 09:36 AM
though i am thinking of getting a SUV or Van.


Unless you need to tow or off-road, get the minivan. Cheaper, more reliable, more fuel-efficient, lower rollover risk, easier to get into and out of (and easier to load up with stuff at Home Depot, for that matter), more cargo room, safer, and cheaper insurance.

mvbighead
11-01-2012, 10:15 AM
Yeah 200 - 250k should be expected from any vehicle. My 1999 Camry has 209,000 on it, also with no end in sight. A few minor issues have arisen... the blower fan only works on two speeds, and the driver window has worn out to the point of not going up all the way anymore on the first try. All fixable, but stuff im just living with right now. Car runs like a top otherwise.

Just put brand new tires on it, and have no doubt i will probably need at least another set before it dies or i sell it.

You'll spend $400 or more on tires, but not $42 on a window motor?
http://www.amazon.com/Dorman-740-721...1&s=automotive (http://redirect.anandtech.com/r?url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.amazon.com%2FDorman-740-721-Toyota-Driver-Regulator%2Fdp%2FB000C11JF2%2Fref%3Dau_pf_ss_1%3Fi e%3DUTF8%26Make%3DToyota%257C76%26Model%3DCamry%25 7C1011%26Year%3D1999%257C1999%26carId%3D010%26n%3D 15684181%26s%3Dautomotive&user=u00000687)

I know tires are needed, and the window perhaps not, but I'd still be majorly bothered by a broken window motor.

EDIT: Dammm... I've been necrod.

waggy
11-01-2012, 10:21 AM
Unless you need to tow or off-road, get the minivan. Cheaper, more reliable, more fuel-efficient, lower rollover risk, easier to get into and out of (and easier to load up with stuff at Home Depot, for that matter), more cargo room, safer, and cheaper insurance.

yeah that is the main reasons i like the van. Though my daughter is on a gymnastics team and we drive a LOT in the winter.

getting 4WD or AWD is a great option on SUV's. That is nearly the ONLY reason i think a SUV over a van.

jagec
11-01-2012, 10:31 AM
yeah that is the main reasons i like the van. Though my daughter is on a gymnastics team and we drive a LOT in the winter.

getting 4WD or AWD is a great option on SUV's. That is nearly the ONLY reason i think a SUV over a van.

A lot of vans come with AWD these days. However, while it's fine for wet/snowy paved roads, it's nothing like the full-blown 4WD that you can find on an SUV.

Of course, the unspoken reason that many people pick an SUV over a van is "insecurity".

CraigRT
11-01-2012, 10:59 AM
any domestics

fixed