: Do I buy? Help me quick!!!!

02-08-11, 11:07 PM
Here's the deal. Looking to purchase an '87 Allante, silver with maroon interior. Drove the car today. Runs strong, transmission shifts smooth and strong. Motor mounts good. Brakes work good but seem hard to push as short distance of easy. Hard braking does no pull. Drives straight with no hand on the wheel.
Listed for $2,500.

Pros: Body very straight. Soft top and Hard top. Hard top NEVER been on the car so is in impecable condition with some scratches on side of roof from something in storage rubbing against it. Runs strong. Trunk carpet and coverings complete and intact. Passenger seat in great condition. All lenses and chrome in place including grill. No sounds from CV joints. Oil clean and doesn't smell burnt. All electronics appear to work fine including diagnostic system. (didn't test the windows.) Decent tires on original rims.

Cons: Exhaust leak between motor and firewall (is this common?). Oil leak next to filter, actually drips. Power steering leak close o pump.. could be hose. Brakes seem to stiff (but could be characteristic). Only turning left.. seems to stick a bit then free up (associated with leak? I don't think so). Driver's seat trashed from overweight driver (Might be able to recover). Center consol around shifter busted (driver shoving getting in and out). Center visor holder and lamps busted and unrepairable. Visors do not stay up by themselves. Small cigarrette burn hole in top of soft top. Rear glass in soft top completely free at top of glass. Heater no blow hot (engine does warm up). AC no blow cold (says low freon). 145,000 miles.

Went with intention of pay $2k for car but after looking and driving I was only comfortable with $1,500... but sale is for absent party so I left with out making the deal. Don't know if $1,500 is acceptable or not.

Want to buy for 16yo's daughters first car. Don't want to pay $1,500 and quickly over run value of car in repairs. I estimate it to be worth about $5,000 with all items fixed. I can do work myself although if exhaust leak requires manifold removal I don't know what that entales.

Is it worth it? Any comments appreciated. I am looking to make decision tomorrow or Thursday!

02-09-11, 10:44 AM
My advice is that this is not the car for a 16 year old. It is a car that you should collect as parts are difficult to find and get. The price is ok if the mileage is good that is not the issue nor is any of the stuff you listed. However as I said before this is not the kind of car you give to someone so young to drive everyday.

02-09-11, 11:01 AM
Agreed. The price is right as a fix-up driver, but not for a young driver. A young driver needs a reliable, mid-size 4 door with good visibility all around.


02-09-11, 07:10 PM
i agree, i wouldnt get this for a 16 yr old unless you know for a FACT that
1) she will take VERY good care of it
2) She will tell you IMMEDIATELY when she gets any warning lights or symptoms.

MOST 16 year olds do not fall into that category, this goes for males and females.

The brake issue, if it IS an issue, can be deadly. If the ABS system fails, its not like on most cars where you just press harder to brake than normal. The brakes will fully cease to work, period.

visors are a common issue.
windows are also a common issue, you should definitely check those, i see window switches go for 300+ easily.
no heat is common but if the heater core isnt leaking, then its usually an easy fix (backflush the heater core)
center consoles are expensive
i wouldnt do it if i wasnt comfortable with the brakes

cadillac kevin
02-09-11, 07:55 PM
I'd say no to an allante for a 16 year old. those cars are (IMO) needy, and repairs would be pretty expensive for a 16 year old. dont get me wrong, the allante is a great car, just it (like most fancy modern high end luxury cars) gets expensive if its used for a daily driver and will need constant attention.

If you are set on getting a caddy for your 16 year old, I'd recommend the 86- 92 fleetwood brougham, early 80's 307 olds V8 powered eldorado, and the 4500 and 4900 powered devilles, sevilles, and eldorados from the late 80's/ early 90's. they are all pretty nice build quality, are fairly cheap to buy and maintain (especially the rwd ones) and the cadillac ride quality cannot be beat.

02-10-11, 10:42 AM
I purchased an '87 two months with 128K miles and in a little better shape than the one you describe. I paid $2,700 and I now have $5,900 in it. And I did most of the work myself (AC Compressor, rear struts, Drivers Seat bottom replaced, new rear brake pads, new water pump, new power steering pump, etc.). The owner let his son drive it for the last year or so and kinda let it go to hell. I have to say that it is pretty much complete and very dependable now. But it also came with a brand new soft top (already installed) and was recently repainted. This car was also maintained by Allante' Source in West Palm Beach because the owner lived there. So the guys there knew the car well. The car also came with all of the receipts and maintenance records for the last 10 years, so I felt pretty comfortable about the purchase. I wouldn't recommend this type of vehicle for a young driver either. You really need an experienced eye and ear to make sure that if a problem starts, you can recognize it and take care of it quickly.

D Yaros
02-12-11, 08:31 AM
Definitely not a car for a kid! Seems like the best part of this deal is the hardtop. One could sell it for a decent chunk of change, if so inclined. Even so, with all the deficits noted, you would be looking at throwing more than a few bucks into this ride. The needed parts are not widely available, and not cheap.

Take a pass!

02-12-11, 01:33 PM

02-17-11, 10:50 AM
I don't think an Allante would be a bad car for a 16 year old, if she is mature enough to handle it. Seriously, if the BRAKE light somes on, run away unless you want to lose some serious money!

The 4.1 is gutless enough she won't be winning and drag races at the stop light. I don't think visibility is an issue.

But, you'll have to bear in mind that expenses can quickly add up. The brake system is an expensive fix if anything goes wrong - I doubt a high schooler could afford the repair even with a well-paying part time job. We're talking THOUSANDS, not hundreds, of dollars. And if you're buying the car for her, I'm assuming you'll be picking up any repairs.

Personally, I wouldn't do it, but that's beside the point. I'd seriously opt for a '89-'93 Deville - especially with the 4.9, which is basically bulletproof if well-maintainted.