Quality Of Used Cars Improving Over The Years

April 22nd, 2011 by

What is a good used car? I have been asked this question many times over the past 40 years. The answer can vary depending on who is asking and what purpose the vehicle will be performing. Back in the sixties, you wouldn’t want anything foreign.  My, how times have changed. But in the sixties, British Leyland had some sexy sport cars that didn’t “run” very well. Later, they went out of business. Italy had the Fiat which had similar problems. They quit importing to the U.S. but there is a rumor they are coming back. Japanese products “ran” better but had terrible rust problems.  Renault, American Motors, Studebaker and others made some bad products and they are no longer with us.

In the seventies we had our first “gas crisis” . This eliminated the “gas hogs” and prompted the Japanese to make better products with no rust and better gas mileage.  The eighties and nineties saw improvement in quality for some and some others not. Korea’s first entries were very inexpensive but they didn’t last too long.  Again, many new and a couple of casualties. In the 2000’s, you either “got good” or you “got gone”. Every manufacturer had to put good products with good gas mileage and good warranties on the market. I honestly couldn’t say that there is a “bad car” being produced and sold in the U.S. today. So what is a good used car? They’re all good. Some better than others. Some have better warranties. Some get better gas mileage. Some do different tasks than others. But today, you see many cars with over 100,000 miles, over 200,000 miles still running and looking good! You never saw that in the 60’s thru the 80’s.

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