: First time buyer, any help is much appreciated



Steelers83186
06-13-13, 11:53 PM
Hey Everyone, Current Acura MDX owner looking to purchase a new vehicle. Have been looking at a CTS or a 3 series, but am leaning more toward the CTS. I'm very concerned about the repair costs of the 3-series.

My basic buying guidelines are:
Under $20,000
Under 60,000 Miles
Must have AWD
Sedan, no coupe
2008+ Model Year on CTS
Automatic

Any input, help, advice, or knowledge is very much appreciated. I know the budget is a little low, but i have found a few cars local that fit the description. Still up in the air on what to do.

Thanks!!!!!

jeffc83
06-14-13, 12:12 AM
FWIW, I'm happy with my 08 but be warned, there are a lot of minor first year bugs with most of them. (mine has had a few itself but everything was taken care of by my dealer) Shoot for a 2009 model or if possible, a 2010. Good luck!

In my opinion, don't buy a BMW. I have read that they are high on maintenance...

Steelers83186
06-14-13, 01:39 AM
Thanks, Found a good deal on a 2008 locally (Pittsburgh,Pa) might go look at it soon. The carfax had a few problems that were fixed through dealers, o2 sensor replaced very recently, 2-3k. and the steering knuckles replaced around 25k, I don't even know exactly what that is, but im sure its very $ through a quick google search. So Ya this 08 was worrying me.
Also was considering a c300 or lexus IS, but the repair costs on the c300 scare me as well.

jeffc83
06-14-13, 08:52 AM
Yeah, that's what steered me away from the c300 too. If you're interested in the 08, just take it for a VERY long test drive. Listen for squeaks and rattles as some of the 08s suffer from it bad. (there are fixes posted here for just about all of them of you're a do it yourself type of person) Make sure YOU feel comfortable in the seat as some think they are pure crap. Hopefully the one you're looking at doesn't have the moonroof as they are prone to leaking from clogged drain tubes and can be noisy. (mine was repaired under warranty and has been perfect since) Also listen for any kind of vibration from the transmission although I'm not sure what that's about...mine is very quiet. Other than that, they're solid cars and the AWD matched up with the 3.6DI is VERY fun to drive...the Lexus could never match the "fun" factor of the CTS IMO.

MaxBuck
06-14-13, 10:17 AM
The Lexus IS is likely the most economical choice, and they drive nicely, but they are really tiny automobiles. It's also hard to imagine finding an AWD version for under $20k.

snofun3
06-14-13, 12:11 PM
If you're looking under $20k at a AWD CTS you'll have an unwarranted vehicle, and probably an 08, or a no-content 09. Make sure you have a LOT of $ available for fixes. A LOT. A REAL lot.

Just read around here, it's not a pretty picture. If you want something sportier, and just a hair smaller (and for sure light years better reliability) look at a G35x.

is250sp
06-14-13, 12:40 PM
My previous car was a 07 Lexus is250 and in the 5+ years of ownership not even one major problem and excellent mpg. Of course that model only has 200hp so you may want to test drive the is350 with 300hp.

jeffc83
06-14-13, 01:03 PM
If you're looking under $20k at a AWD CTS you'll have an unwarranted vehicle, and probably an 08, or a no-content 09. Make sure you have a LOT of $ available for fixes. A LOT. A REAL lot.

Just read around here, it's not a pretty picture. If you want something sportier, and just a hair smaller (and for sure light years better reliability) look at a G35x.

Not to be rude but if he can still purchase the gmpp warranty, then it WILL NOT cost him a lot of dough to fix the car. Yes, some CTSs are much more prone to problems but not all of them are garage queens. On the flip side, the g35x is much more reliable. If you like that look, I'd recommend you loom at that too. My maxima was a "bad egg" so I cannot recommend it.

Cadillac Cust Svc
06-14-13, 01:56 PM
Hey Everyone, Current Acura MDX owner looking to purchase a new vehicle. Have been looking at a CTS or a 3 series, but am leaning more toward the CTS. I'm very concerned about the repair costs of the 3-series.

My basic buying guidelines are:
Under $20,000
Under 60,000 Miles
Must have AWD
Sedan, no coupe
2008+ Model Year on CTS
Automatic

Any input, help, advice, or knowledge is very much appreciated. I know the budget is a little low, but i have found a few cars local that fit the description. Still up in the air on what to do.

Thanks!!!!!

Hello Steelers83186,

I see you have been offered great advice from other forum members. Like jeffc83 mentioned, I also advise to take the vehicle for a test drive before you consider purchasing it. Good luck with searching for your vehicle and if there are any additional questions or concerns, don't hesitate to reach out to us!

Sincerely,

Laura M.
Cadillac Customer Service

Steelers83186
06-14-13, 05:14 PM
Thanks For all the input.... One of the reasons I am looking to get a new (used) car is that I've had problems with my MDX, also paying way too much and can easily get a lower payment,

The one I am looking at does have the large moon-roof/sunroof that goes into the back a little.
It also has Nav, which seems to have some problems as well.

The Size of the IS did steer me away the most, found one locally listed for just over 20,000 with AWD, Was also the most expensive choice (of whats available in the Pgh area)

For some reason I just dont really like how the g35x looks as much as the others. I'm not saying its ugly or anything, but not as appealing. however I do love Nissan products, I've owned a few and positive experiences with all. Maybe ill take a closer look though

Definitely looking for something SOMEWHAT reliable.

Appreciate all the help so far!

jeffc83
06-14-13, 06:33 PM
Thanks For all the input.... One of the reasons I am looking to get a new (used) car is that I've had problems with my MDX, also paying way too much and can easily get a lower payment,

The one I am looking at does have the large moon-roof/sunroof that goes into the back a little.
It also has Nav, which seems to have some problems as well.

The Size of the IS did steer me away the most, found one locally listed for just over 20,000 with AWD, Was also the most expensive choice (of whats available in the Pgh area)

For some reason I just dont really like how the g35x looks as much as the others. I'm not saying its ugly or anything, but not as appealing. however I do love Nissan products, I've owned a few and positive experiences with all. Maybe ill take a closer look though

Definitely looking for something SOMEWHAT reliable.

Appreciate all the help so far!

No problems with my NAV at all.

Agreed with the look of the g35.

exm22psu
06-14-13, 06:51 PM
I will reaffirm what others have said here. Do NOT get an 2008/09 without a warranty. They can be problem prone and VERY expensive to fix. From timing chains and leaking joint boots to misfires and electrical issues, you could find yourself spending a lot of money. They are nice cars but they are prone to problems pre-2010.

RAB
06-14-13, 07:57 PM
Steelers83186, your price limit of under $20,000 is too low in my opinion, by $5K or $6K.
You definitely want to get a car with some warranty remaining. I think you'll get the most bang for your buck, in all respects, going with a CTS compared with the other cars you've listed. I'd recommend at least a 2010 model-year, preferably a 2011. The prices for 2010's and 2011's are not that different. Check out Cars.com, which is where I found my immaculate '11 CTS4 Premium Sedan with FE5 (the vehicle had 1,250 miles on the odo when I bought it). I'd recommend getting a Premium model, which comes with everything on it. That way you won't miss out on options & features you will later wish you had. On a quick check at Cars.com I've just spotted a 2011 CTS4 Premium Sedan with 9,187 miles for $25,997. Good luck in your search.

jeffc83
06-14-13, 09:09 PM
Steelers83186, your price limit of under $20,000 is too low in my opinion, by $5K or $6K.
You definitely want to get a car with some warranty remaining. I think you'll get the most bang for your buck, in all respects, going with a CTS compared with the other cars you've listed. I'd recommend at least a 2010 model-year, preferably a 2011. The prices for 2010's and 2011's are not that different. Check out Cars.com, which is where I found my immaculate '11 CTS4 Premium Sedan with FE5 (the vehicle had 1,250 miles on the odo when I bought it). I'd recommend getting a Premium model, which comes with everything on it. That way you won't miss out on options & features you will later wish you had. On a quick check at Cars.com I've just spotted a 2011 CTS4 Premium Sedan with 9,187 miles for $25,997. Good luck in your search.

RAB, where is that 2011 at!? lol, that's cheap!?

RAB
06-14-13, 09:13 PM
RAB, where is that 2011 at!? lol, that's cheap!?

Hi Jeffc83. Yes, it is cheap. The car is in Salt Lake City, UT. Here's the link: http://www.cars.com/go/search/detail.jsp?tracktype=usedcc&csDlId=&csDgId=&listingId=116891523&listingRecNum=0&criteria=prMx%3D30000%26sf1Dir%3DDESC%26prMn%3D0%2 6mkId%3D20052%26stkTyp%3DU%26mdId%3D20787%26rd%3D1 00000%26mlgId%3D28868%26crSrtFlds%3DstkTypId-feedSegId-mkId-mdId-pseudoPrice-mlgId-yrId-trId%26zc%3D48060%26rn%3D0%26PMmt%3D1-1-1%26stkTypId%3D28881%26sf2Dir%3DASC%26sf1Nm%3Dpric e%26yrId%3D34923%26sf2Nm%3Dmiles%26isDealerGroupin g%3Dfalse%26trId%3D24733%26rpp%3D50%26feedSegId%3D 28705&aff=national&listType=1
Hmm... might you be interested? :eyebrow:

jeffc83
06-14-13, 09:16 PM
Hi Jeffc83. Here's the link: http://www.cars.com/go/search/detail.jsp?tracktype=usedcc&csDlId=&csDgId=&listingId=116891523&listingRecNum=0&criteria=prMx%3D30000%26sf1Dir%3DDESC%26prMn%3D0%2 6mkId%3D20052%26stkTyp%3DU%26mdId%3D20787%26rd%3D1 00000%26mlgId%3D28868%26crSrtFlds%3DstkTypId-feedSegId-mkId-mdId-pseudoPrice-mlgId-yrId-trId%26zc%3D48060%26rn%3D0%26PMmt%3D1-1-1%26stkTypId%3D28881%26sf2Dir%3DASC%26sf1Nm%3Dpric e%26yrId%3D34923%26sf2Nm%3Dmiles%26isDealerGroupin g%3Dfalse%26trId%3D24733%26rpp%3D50%26feedSegId%3D 28705&aff=national&listType=1

Thanks RAB. The shipping alone would kill me...I live in PA. Good deal though!

RAB
06-14-13, 09:26 PM
Thanks RAB. The shipping alone would kill me...I live in PA. Good deal though!

Yes, it's a good deal. You could always inquire about the shipping. Who knows, they might help out with that and it could end up being cheaper than you think! ;)

Citabria
06-14-13, 09:36 PM
Gentlemen, in regards to the car link that RAB posted it has a branded title. I would stay away.

RAB
06-14-13, 09:41 PM
Gentlemen, in regards to the car link that RAB posted it has a branded title. I would stay away.

Citabria, I don't know what "branded title" means (is it perhaps a former rental car?), but I'm sure your advice to stay away from this one is very sound. That was just one example of several '11 CTS4 Premiums for sale on Cars.com. Most of the other identical model cars listed with low or lower mileage are priced in the high $20K's or more. As always, buyer beware! You've got to check absolutely everything out before buying.

Citabria
06-14-13, 09:48 PM
Here us one definition RAB. I think it's probably pretty close but I'm not an expert.

Vehicle title branding is the use of a permanent designation on a vehicle's title, registration or permit documents to indicate that a vehicle has been written off due to collision, fire or flood damage or has been sold for scrap.

The designation or brand is mandatory in most provinces and states in North America when an insurer or vehicle owner writes off a vehicle as a "total loss". Typically this means the cost to repair the vehicle would equal or exceed the car's value, although legal definitions vary.

----------

We are seeing a bunch of superstorm Sandy cars showing up in Idaho and Washington. I also believe branded or salvage means no warranty!

jeffc83
06-14-13, 09:49 PM
VERY nice catch there! I knew that price was too low for a 2011 Premium...but as RAB said, there are a lot of them to go around right now.

Citabria
06-14-13, 09:54 PM
Exactly, I ended up buying 2 for the price if one new! And RAB, are you back in North America?

Steelers83186
06-15-13, 02:02 AM
With something under $20,000 being an ideal payment, I mean I could stretch that, but always nice to have some extra spending $$. I'm starting to think I may have to lower my expectations. I guess 20k just doesn't buy as much nowadays....Or wait 6-8 mts and try and save up 5k.

Appreciate all the input on the CTS, probably saved me from buying the 08, it was a really good deal.
Guess I'll look at a kia now................. (NOT lol)
Probably look into infinity more, even though don't like as much.
Thanks!

Citabria
06-15-13, 02:53 AM
I would not give up yet. I picked up my 09 cts4 premium last fall off of Craigslist with 31k miles 8 months of factory warranty left for just a few thousand more than you want to pay. It was in an estate and they just wanted to get rid of it. Just keep looking!

RAB
06-15-13, 06:48 AM
Exactly, I ended up buying 2 for the price if one new! And RAB, are you back in North America?

Hey there Citabria - good to hear from you. :) No, I'm not yet back in NA - still overseas. My lovely '11 CTS4 premium sedan is tucked safely away, in sanctuary. Its odometer is presently just over 9,000 KMs (5,592 miles) - probably one of the lowest mileage 2011 CTS4 Premiums in existence. It'll be great to drive it again. I've decided to keep the car for at least 2 more years, and plan to purchase an extended warranty for it sometime in Q2 2014. The factory B-to-B warranty expires in Oct 2014.
With ALL possible alternatives considered I think a properly equipped 2nd gen CTS is a terrific car to own. Hope you're enjoying your 2 CTS's!! :2thumbs:

http://i248.photobucket.com/albums/gg195/RAB_2008/10CACT06595_Wallpaper_859.jpg (http://s248.photobucket.com/user/RAB_2008/media/10CACT06595_Wallpaper_859.jpg.html)

rchern
06-15-13, 08:26 AM
Gentlemen, in regards to the car link that RAB posted it has a branded title. I would stay away. How do you find out if a car has a branded title?

jeffc83
06-15-13, 09:21 AM
Hey there Citabria - good to hear from you. :) No, I'm not yet back in NA - still overseas. My lovely '11 CTS4 premium sedan is tucked safely away, in sanctuary. Its odometer is presently just over 9,000 KMs (5,592 miles) - probably one of the lowest mileage 2011 CTS4 Premiums in existence. It'll be great to drive it again. I've decided to keep the car for at least 2 more years, and plan to purchase an extended warranty for it sometime in Q2 2014. The factory B-to-B warranty expires in Oct 2014.
With ALL possible alternatives considered I think a properly equipped 2nd gen CTS is a terrific car to own. Hope you're enjoying your 2 CTS's!! :2thumbs:



I hate to burst your bubble but I just found 6 with lower mileage with you;) Even found one with "1 mile" on auto trader....lol.

mobile version -http://m.autotrader.com/vdp.html?id=300268140

You are due back home soon, right?

Citabria
06-15-13, 10:05 AM
How do you find out if a car has a branded title?

VIN reporting companies such as carfax or autocheck should show vehicle history and title info such as branded, salvage, etc. and a good reputable car dealer should be up front about it too. In the case of the car in the link the dealer was up front and had it in the vehicle description As I said a bunch of flood damaged cars have made there way to the west coast and buyers just need to do their homework. I would stay away while others will embrace the deal they may or may not be getting.

RAB
06-15-13, 07:04 PM
I hate to burst your bubble but I just found 6 with lower mileage with you;) Even found one with "1 mile" on auto trader....lol.

mobile version -http://m.autotrader.com/vdp.html?id=300268140

You are due back home soon, right?

Jeff, you bubble burster you! LOL! But wait a minute.. are all those 6 cars with lower miles actually CTS AWD Premium models like mine? And equipped with FE5? :eyebrow: The Autotrader ID 300268140 car you've referenced that has 1 mile on it is a Performance RWD model. I wonder if that ad is still valid - it shows only MSRP pricing.

I was home recently on a visit (that was great), and I'm due back home for good before too long. Can't wait! :)

jeffc83
06-15-13, 07:52 PM
Jeff, you bubble burster you! LOL! But wait a minute.. are all those 6 cars with lower miles actually CTS AWD Premium models like mine? And equipped with FE5? :eyebrow: The Autotrader ID 300268140 car you've referenced that has 1 mile on it is a Performance RWD model. I wonder if that ad is still valid - it shows only MSRP pricing.

I was home recently on a visit (that was great), and I'm due back home for good before too long. Can't wait! :)

Good eye! The others weren't premium models either unless I misread twice on my 4.5" phone. (am upgrading to the note 2 just so I can see the stinking screen...lol) I believe you may in fact have the lowest mileage 2011 CTS including all the goodies;) I just couldn't resist when you said that. :lildevil:

I'll bet but do enjoy your time there!

RAB
06-15-13, 07:58 PM
Interesting. I visited the Cars.com ad once again for that branded title '11 CTS4 Premium in Utah and when I looked at all 32 photos I discovered the car is equipped with Recaro seats along with sport metal pedals. I don't recall Recaros being an option on the 2011 non-V CTS, but there was an option for seats having special seating surfaces with sueded inserts. Are these those seats? I'm guessing no. I'm guessing the Recaros in this car were transplanted from a CTS-V. The seats look very supportive and comfortable - but of course they are, they're Recaros!
Any thoughts on what's gone on here? If this is some sort of salvaged car they've done a very good job on the interior! (based on these photos).

http://i248.photobucket.com/albums/gg195/RAB_2008/17_zpsf6e8eddb.jpg (http://s248.photobucket.com/user/RAB_2008/media/17_zpsf6e8eddb.jpg.html)

http://i248.photobucket.com/albums/gg195/RAB_2008/19_zpsf611f450.jpg (http://s248.photobucket.com/user/RAB_2008/media/19_zpsf611f450.jpg.html)

http://i248.photobucket.com/albums/gg195/RAB_2008/30_zps3ac81c38.jpg (http://s248.photobucket.com/user/RAB_2008/media/30_zps3ac81c38.jpg.html)

http://i248.photobucket.com/albums/gg195/RAB_2008/27_zps35b30bfc.jpg (http://s248.photobucket.com/user/RAB_2008/media/27_zps35b30bfc.jpg.html)

jeffc83
06-15-13, 08:53 PM
I thought it was an option on the non-v CTS. (I may have read it in one of the sales brochures)

RAB
06-15-13, 09:17 PM
I thought it was an option on the non-v CTS. (I may have read it in one of the sales brochures)

Nope, not for the 2011 non-V CTS. The optional seats featured sueded inserts, but Recaro isn't mentioned in the description. Recaros were said to be only available on the CTS-V in 2011.

Links to 2011 sales brochures:
2011 Cadillac CTS (Canada): http://www.keepandshare.com/doc/2856491/2011-cadillac-cts-brochure-canada-pdf-june-7-2011-11-20-am-4-0-meg?da=y
2011 Cadillac CTS (USA): http://www.keepandshare.com/doc/2856492/2011-cadillac-cts-brochure-usa-pdf-june-7-2011-11-20-am-3-4-meg?da=y
2011 Cadillac CTS Sedan Select Specifications: http://www.keepandshare.com/doc/2856493/2011-cadillac-cts-sedan-select-specifications-usa-pdf-june-7-2011-11-20-am-1-1-meg?da=y

jeffc83
06-15-13, 09:46 PM
Thanks RAB...it must have just been the inserts then. He (or she) did a very nice job on those seats!

Citabria
06-16-13, 03:15 PM
For the original poster

I use cargurus.com I get a daily email listing (why i do not know since i have enough of them ....) of all cts vehicles highlighting newly listed as well as price changes. I personally wouldn't give up as there are a bunch out there!

Steelers83186
06-16-13, 11:38 PM
I haven't given up just yet... I'm still looking. Haven't found a car I like better(or as much) in this price range yet.

So Would a 09 be alright? Or strictly 10+? Thanks.

Citabria
06-17-13, 12:32 AM
One if my cts vehicles is a premium cts4 with 37000 miles bought used last fall. It really does run well. I'm not staying up at night worrying about timing chains, oil consumption, or u joints, sunroof leaks etc. I am aware of the possibility of problems and will keep my eyes open as every other vehicle has issues too. Remember the Ford Pinto, I saw one today as I laid down 500 miles on the interstate. Right now I couldn't be more pleased! Let me leave it at this, how many times do you go online and post how well your car runs? Not much?? But most will go on line to rant. I did buy a GMPP major guard while still under factory warranty, which is the benefit buying a car still in factory warranty