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Old 20 Apr 2012, 08:46 am
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Default Honda Odyssey questions?

Looking into Honda Odysseys. Would love to spend less than $12000. Found a 2003 Honda Odyssey with 81000 miles from a dealer for $9000. Seems to be a good price. Just wondering if its worth investing in a van with that much mileage, or if itll be okay since its a Honda. Need a van to last me about 5-7 years. I put less than 10,000 miles a year on a car. In my budget, I cant get newer than a 2006, and most of the vans have at least 50000 miles, going up to 120000+ miles. Is it worth it to spend a few thousand more just for a newer year model, or is it the same as a 2003 with the same mileage?

Zufelt- Is it a good sign if the transmission has already been rebuilt, or a bad sign?

Also, about how much do those repairs cost---the changing of transmission fluid and the timing belt change?
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Old 20 Apr 2012, 09:01 am
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How long a vehicle will last relies greatly with how well it has been taken care of. If the dealer can provide service records, make sure oil changes and regular maintenance have been done on time. Also, the transmissions for those models have had some problems, so definitely check if that transmission has had any repairs/rebuilds. If you do purchase it, I would recommend transmission fluid changes every 30,000 miles regardless of what the owner's manual says.

Also, the timing belt is due for replacement (by time, not by mileage) so check if it has been replaced.

Gas mileage is not much better on newer models so not worth the extra money in my opinion.

Edit: About the transmission - if rebuilt, make sure it was done by a reputable place and also if there is any warranty that comes with it.

Transmission fluid change should run about $90 max

Timing belt change would be roughly $500. Replacing the drive belts and water pump are optional (but recommended) and would add roughly $250
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Old 20 Apr 2012, 09:31 am
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Altho Honda has one of the best records for reliability, dont think a used Honda "will be ok" just bc it's a Honda.

Around 1999, Honda had terrible probs w/ the trans in Odysseys and other models.

Honda tried to cheapen manufacturing by using some composite parts in the trans instead of solid metal parts.

The cheap parts often broke, ruining the trans. Some customers' trans had to be replaced more than once.

As I recall, Honda dint treat its customers very well on this.

Same w/ windshield cracks in the Element...customers' complaints were often brushed off as "rock strikes."

Imo, look at the Toyota Sienna minivan...Consumer Reports rates it as a better used vehicle bet than Odyssey.

I've owned two Hondas & two Toyotas, all used, and had no complaints, but I cant say that abt a Honda dealer I dealt w/ in Jersey near Philly. I had to force them to do the right thing & finally buy back my new-repo Accord after they botched a basic bodywork/paint job on it.

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