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April 16, 2005

Minivan Madness

So we're in need of a vehicle. A minivan.

Hubby's done some research and has an idea of what we want. I'm more vague--used, decent condition, reliable.

It's crazy needing to buy a minivan after 3 1/2 years of using the metro, minibuses, taxis, trains and walking. I liked not having and not needing a vehicle.

But I'm looking forward to the freedom of having one again. And if anyone has leads on a decent minivan for sale, let me know!


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Having done the research, the process for choosing a minivan is quite simple.

Toyota best.
Honda good.
GM quite good.
Ford decent.
Chrysler decent.
Mazda decent.
Kia bad.

I drive a Ford Windstar and have been very pleased with it...for what that's worth...

Posted by: Tim at April 16, 2005 02:49 PM

All I can tell you is I'm driving my third Chevy Venture. I love 'em! Be sure to get the automatic sliding door, rear a/c if you're in a hot area, and if it has the compass/temperature/fuel info gauge, all the better.

My new Venture is lacking that last, and mercy Maud, was I missing the compass yesterday, lost as I was in Dallas.

Posted by: Anne in Ft. Worth at April 16, 2005 03:48 PM

I don't know if you are guys are living near PA. But if it's close at all, there is a ministry called CMTS ministries outside of Lancaster, PA. They specialize in finding and fixing cars for missionaries that are home, pastors, etc. at reasonable prices. The Director was with Wycliffe for a number of years. It might be worth it to check them out - cmtsministries.org

Posted by: tony sheng at April 16, 2005 03:56 PM

Online try www.autotraderonline.com Check it every day for what you are looking for and you will find out what is available, the going Listing Price, and how fast they sell. We just bought a car from someone local. They had only listed it the day before, and the paper edition hadn't even come out yet, but it was listed online.

Posted by: Missy at April 17, 2005 01:48 PM

Actually, this year Honda is best, according to Consumer Reports. Then again, the Odyssey and...Sienna? I think, anyway, they're so very close that it's a toss-up most of the time.

That being said, I have a 2000 Odyssey that someone is going to have to pry out of my cold, dead hands to make me part with it.

I LOVE it.

Posted by: suburban*misfit at April 17, 2005 03:24 PM

Well, you saw my post on my beautiful minivan! I am so happy with it, I can't stand myself. I really never wanted to be the soccer-mom type, but when you have more than 1-2 kids, it's the only way to get everyone where you need to go. We only ever buy used, we got a 2001 Mercury Villager with 34,000 miles on it, it great shape. Paid around $11,000. We were blessed, a good friend from church is the manager of a used car dealership, and is so very honest (I don't know how he stays in business!), we knew if he said the car was great, it was.

Posted by: Jema at April 18, 2005 09:35 PM

Thanks for all the leads!

We bought a used Dodge Caravan, great condition, well maintained, good price. Actually, it looks a lot better than the last two used minivans we bought. We're keeping our Dodge Caravan/Plymouth Voyager tradition, though we looked at others.

Oh, Missy--we found it online, the first day listed, before it was in the paper! Thanks for the idea!

Posted by: TulipGirl at April 19, 2005 09:42 AM

I've been driving a minivan for the past 6 years, it is a plymouth Voyager 1997 (I bought it in 99). I am quite pleased with the performance, although I hear a lot of horror stories about people having to replace the transmission at least once or twice, since it is somewhat of a weak point with Doge Caravan/Plymouth Voyager. I do know two people who drive plymouth voyagers of about the same year as mine 95 to 97 and they did have to replace their transmission once. But for me, I never had any problems with my transmission (knock on wood). Mind you I do regular preventative maintenance on my transmission and everything else :-)


Posted by: Fritz at April 26, 2005 12:25 PM

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