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Old 03-02-2013, 09:03 PM   #1
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Jeep For A First Car?

Hey,

My name is Adam. I am 16 years old and I am thinking about buying a Jeep Wrangler for my first car. I have been saving up all my money and working for two years, and have saved about 6500$. I have been looking and Jeeps in that price range are usually the late 1990s.

I was wondering if anyone had any advice regarding Jeeps for first cars, as if they are practical, reliable, and are they easy/cheap to fix. I really would love to get a Jeep however I want to know from guys who have had experience if for a first car if it is a good idea.


Thank you,
Adam

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Old 03-02-2013, 09:18 PM   #2
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This is only my opinion. I'm probably going to get bashed here but I would say a jeep is probably not a very good first car. Mine,(lifted on33's) pulls in a deep puddle, wanders in the lane, doesn't stop very well, so on and so on. The parts cost more and all you will want to do is upgrade it. Your best bet,IMO, is to find your self an old Honda and learn to drive that. Fix what breaks and learn as you go. An old crx can be had for 4k easy. And that's in pretty decent condition where I come from. There easy to work on, mechanical parts can be found easily ( many parts were the same ranging from1988-2002) most replacement parts are relatively cheap. You will enjoy the gas mileage, and there pretty fun to drive( imagine a gokart on the road). Save the rest of your money and get a jeep later. Hope this helped. By the way I've got an 89 civic, and for on road driving( which I do most often) I prefer it. Don't get me wrong I love my jeep but the Honda is twice as fast( at least) and half the gas. GL and hope I don't get too flamed! Ha.

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Old 03-02-2013, 09:22 PM   #3
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This is only my opinion. I'm probably going to get bashed here but I would say a jeep is probably not a very good first car. Mine,(lifted on33's) pulls in a deep puddle, wanders in the lane, doesn't stop very well, so on and so on.
Not to mention the proven fact that a very quick jerk on the steering wheel might put you on your top.

Guess I'll get bashed with you, Sinepome.
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Old 03-02-2013, 09:23 PM   #4
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Save up and get a newer model TJ. I wish i would have do e that
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Old 03-02-2013, 09:35 PM   #5
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Thank you guys for the help/advice!!! I really appreciate it!
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Old 03-02-2013, 09:36 PM   #6
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It won't be cheap, upgrade bugs will bite you. Not very good on gas either.
But they are fun and the chicks will think it's cool
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Old 03-02-2013, 09:56 PM   #7
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I'm 16 I have a 92 with a straight 6 and a 5 speed, I love it! I wouldn't want any other car/truck out there it's like nothing else I have drove, it's really fun and versatile. Yes jeeps don't have the best reputation for being the safest things on the road, but IMO it drives just like an SUV, except it's not nearly as big. And if its stock i Have found that it is very stable. As long as you drive it like a jeep and don't take corners at 40 miles an hour you will be just fine. That's just my 2 cents though, hope this helps!
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Old 03-02-2013, 10:07 PM   #8
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Do it. Its extremely easy to drive, wish I had it as my first vehicle. Teaches you to drive defensively with how much lack of go it has per say. The cost of gas is definitely worth it considering its both a toy and a daily driver ( in my situation at least). Jerking the steering wheel won't roll you, you have to try. I"ve taken a highway on ramp a bit too fast (65 if it matters) with no sway bar and I didn't roll, just scares the shit out of you. Any danger about rolling is greatly exaggerated. You have to drive like an idiot to do that. Its ridiculously capable without upgrades, gotta remember that.

Think that covers the major issues.
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Old 03-02-2013, 10:41 PM   #9
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Let me start with this: Whether you are fixing it, modding/upgrading it, or just putting fuel in the tank, a Jeep is a money pit. For myself, a sweet, sweet money pit that makes me happy when I'm in it.

So... is a 2-door Wrangler practical?

As a off-road vehicle good in tight spaces - yes.

For a daily driver, not really - this is coming from someone who has a YJ as his DD and only vehicle. You have very limited room for both passengers and gear. It doesn't come with secure storage, you have to install your own if you don't want your stuff getting stolen. If you want more room to securely store items, on par with a trunk of a car, you have to remove the rear seat - eliminating two spots for passengers. How much you spend on secure storage depend on whether you make it yourself, or buy something already made for your vehicle. All of those things never crossed my mind (or I simply ignored them ) when I set my sights on the Jeep I now have.

Wind noise - Soft tops are really noisy while driving on the highway, pretty much negating any sort of conversation that doesn't involve shouting and repeatedly saying "WHAT?", followed by a hoarse throat. Hard tops will be quieter by some but it will still be loud compared to your typical car. Solution? Shut up and turn up the radio . Long drives might leave you a little hard of hearing with the soft top.

Fuel economy is famously lousy (in the teens) - Jeeps have all the aerodynamics of a brick on wheels. Add heavy accessories and economy drops even more.

Reliability comes down to what you start with, how well you fix it up, and how well you maintain the vehicle. Getting a used Jeep up to good working order might cost a little.

The Jeeps you are considering are going to be at least 14 years old. You have to be very wary of the condition of a Jeep this age, even more so the older they are. How the vehicle was used/abused makes a difference. Jeeps (older ones at least) can be easy to fix if you have the mechanical experience or inclination, as well as the space, tools and the time to do the job. It'll be expensive as hell if you have to take it to a mechanic all the time to solve any problems.
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Old 03-02-2013, 10:56 PM   #10
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It won't roll on the road unless you are extremely dumb or in certain extreme cases, which would have most any other SUV on its top, too. I would recommend a TJ (I'm a little biased) since it's more up to date, but not new enough to have tons of electronics. It is very easy to work on, most things you can do yourself and learn about it as you go. Plus, you can go offroading, something you can't do in a Honda sedan. It's easy to drive, has very few blindspots, and will put a smile on your face every time you drive it. You just have to be safe and smart. But that is true of any vehicle you may buy.
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Old 03-03-2013, 07:17 AM   #11
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You just have to be safe and smart. But that is true of any vehicle you may buy.
not trashing you or the OP. BUt how many safe, smart, 16 year old driver are out there? Probably not many.
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Old 03-03-2013, 07:55 AM   #12
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I say get it while youre young. I got mine as a teenager, never had any accidents. Cars are not safe or unsafe and if you flip it you were doing wrong. But my main point is you may very well get tired of how leaky, bouncy and noisy they are (all jeeps) so you should get one while youre young. When youre 50 and ugly driving around with your 50 year old ugly wife youll wish you had made some memories with pretty 16 year olds in your jeep. I speak from experience, my best memories in my jeep were back in H.S. and I know I would have hated myself if I could have gotten one but didnt. Mine has been reliable, you probably wont have to do much work on it unless you do something stupid to it or buy a p.o.s. to begin with. Leave it stock.

Oh and I was a responsible 16 year old driver, my mom is an ER nurse and my dad is a safety expert and they had no problem with getting me a jeep, the only issue was getting to drive ANYTHING before they thought I was safe. You wouldnt believe how long I had to take driving "lessons" from my parents.
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Old 03-03-2013, 07:56 AM   #13
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For godsake man JEEP IS NOT A CAR
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Old 03-03-2013, 08:31 AM   #14
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my two-cents :

I think that a Wrangler CAN be a good first vehicle. As could a 1/2-ton pick-up, a honda civic, a dodge prowler, a lamborgini, a '32 Cord.....or anything else with a powerplant and wheels.

The biggest variable is the piece of meat sitting behind the steering wheel.

KIds arent "bad drivers". They are inexperienced drivers....getting expeience. And the only way to learn...is to make mistakes (and survive them).

A Wrangler will teach you a lot...in a hurry. As will many other vehicle options. The wranglers short wheel-base and comparitively high center of gravity will be SLIGHTLY less forgiving of mistakes. But if you get it...you've GOT it for damn sure.

Wranglers are VERY easy to work on...thats a good thing since you will be almost constantly working on them either by necissity or for ego-fluffing as you personalize your ride to reflect "you". Parts are everywhere...its a great class room to learn maintenance and repair. Keep in mind that, like any vehicle, if you f-up the fuel system, the electrical system, the drive-train...it'll suck. But unlike most other vehicles...if you f-up the SUSPENSION....it COULD be a very very bad thing...but will likely just cost you a lot in tires...which you will be going through quickly anyhow...because of your age. Not a value assessment...just a statistical probability.

Wranglers arent built for efficiency. But when I was your age, I didnt give a shart about gas mileage cuz I didnt have any other responsibilities to use my money on so I just kept feeding the machine. Just know that you will spend more time at the fuel pump than most of your friends.

In short, the Wrangler CAN be a good first-vehicle. Other vehicles would probably be better options in my opinion. But if its your dream, if its within your reach, if it is ALSO within your GRASP (and if you know the difference in those two then you are already years ahead of most folks) then you should go for it.

Just be conscious to apply a smidgeon more common sense to your driving technique than most of your friends. If you're careful, you'll be fine. (Again, true of any vehicle)
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Old 03-03-2013, 09:18 AM   #15
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not trashing you or the OP. BUt how many safe, smart, 16 year old driver are out there? Probably not many.
There are some, I considered myself as one of them. I do see your point though, many people, 16 years old or not, aren't fit to be on the road.
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Old 03-03-2013, 10:21 AM   #16
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For godsake man JEEP IS NOT A CAR
I was going to say something similar. Thanks.
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Old 03-03-2013, 10:31 AM   #17
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My '97 TJ was my first car. I didn't get it until I was 19 because my family moved abroad when I was 16 (two days after I got my license, in fact). I'm so happy it was my first vehicle and I absolutely love it.

Yes stuff will break constantly, so make sure you keep saving money so that you're prepared for those fixes. Luckily, Jeeps (especially TJs) are pretty simple and easy to work on.

As far as mods go - of course you will want to jack it up and throw huge mud tires on it, etc., etc. Again, just save for those and be responsible. If its a DD or a pavement princess, it probably doesn't need 35"s...There's a LOT of mods that you can do for cheap with spray paint, plasti dip, etc. I recently mossy oak'd my dash and it's one of my favorite things I've done.

In short...I say go for it. I know that it's tough for 16 year olds to be responsible but it sounds like you are and if you fall in love with your jeep half as much as I did mine, you'll take good care of it.
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Old 03-03-2013, 10:43 AM   #18
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Hey Adam!
My name is Art and I'm 18. Last summer I got my first Jeep which was a 1993 Wrangler.
For $6500 you can get a great Jeep. As far as I know, this car is super easy to work on. I've replaced gaskets, cleaned out oil sludge, and much more. It was surprisingly easy to do. Insurance is also cheap (oddly enough though, it is cheaper for me to insure my dad's 2010 liberty because it has more saftey features). Insurance for me is about $80 per month (full coverage). The motor is very reliable and will go on for hundreds of thousands of miles. The only downside is you always want to upgrade your Jeep and as a result its hard to save money (for me anyway). I would recommend getting a Jeep. I can have more fun in a Jeep than in a $250,000 supercar.
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Old 03-03-2013, 11:07 AM   #19
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To all who have commented with experience/advice thank you. I really do appreciate it and I have been refreshing the page all morning and reading them over and over. I'm heading out today to look at a '99 Jeep TJ. It has no lift( keeping it stock) and no huge upgrades. It has 92k and is beautiful. Will post photos if I do get it but thank you all so much for the help.
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Old 03-03-2013, 11:14 AM   #20
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It doesn't have to be your first vehicle but don't wait till 40 like I did.
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Old 03-03-2013, 12:59 PM   #21
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To all who have commented with experience/advice thank you. I really do appreciate it and I have been refreshing the page all morning and reading them over and over. I'm heading out today to look at a '99 Jeep TJ. It has no lift( keeping it stock) and no huge upgrades. It has 92k and is beautiful. Will post photos if I do get it but thank you all so much for the help.
Yes keep us updated
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Old 03-03-2013, 02:42 PM   #22
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That Jeep fell through unfortunately. We went out today and saw a few really nice ones but the dealer was closed. Hopefully heading out soon to test drive those!
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Old 03-03-2013, 02:50 PM   #23
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Something else to consider since your still in high school is if you'll have the car with you if you go to college. I had my jeep and it was gone through on average 1-2 times a month and that was at a college with very few crimes.
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Old 03-03-2013, 05:09 PM   #24
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Get what you want OP. I had an 87 YJ Laredo for my first car. It was a total heap, luckily it was my parents but it had a ton of problems. I wouldn't get a jeep unless you can afford a ton of repairs. I got a 95 YJ last year and have already put at least another 3k into it in maintenance, and that one was garage kept for 17 year! Have to do exhaust next weekend.

Also if you are set on a Jeep get one from a private seller, not a stealership. You will get a better deal and you can talk them down.
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Old 03-03-2013, 05:19 PM   #25
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Jeep as a first RIDE is not a bad idea IMO...assuming the new driver is responsible...won't get into the whole age fuel mileage etc.

IMO if you can afford it, and it is what you want, and realize you PROBABLY will have to get repairs or do them yourself go for it!!

MOST 16yr old Kids cant save a $1000, (and many adults) the fact that you have close to enough to pay cash for a good used Jeep speaks volumes to me....but again that is IMO...GL!!!
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Old 03-03-2013, 06:37 PM   #26
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Not to mention the proven fact that a very quick jerk on the steering wheel might put you on your top.

Guess I'll get bashed with you, Sinepome.
really? threads like this crack me up
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Old 03-03-2013, 07:25 PM   #27
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Mine,(lifted on33's) pulls in a deep puddle, wanders in the lane, doesn't stop very well, so on and so on.
So you're saying a Jeep isn't a good first car because yours doesn't drive good? You have some upgrades to do.

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Not to mention the proven fact that a very quick jerk on the steering wheel might put you on your top.

Guess I'll get bashed with you, Sinepome.
You asked for it...

That is the most idiotic thing I've heard today.

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not trashing you or the OP. BUt how many safe, smart, 16 year old driver are out there? Probably not many.
There is a lot more than you would think.
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Old 03-03-2013, 07:48 PM   #28
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Hey,

My name is Adam. I am 16 years old and I am thinking about buying a Jeep Wrangler for my first car. I have been saving up all my money and working for two years, and have saved about 6500$. I have been looking and Jeeps in that price range are usually the late 1990s.

I was wondering if anyone had any advice regarding Jeeps for first cars, as if they are practical, reliable, and are they easy/cheap to fix. I really would love to get a Jeep however I want to know from guys who have had experience if for a first car if it is a good idea.


Thank you,
Adam
My 03 sport was my first 4 wheeled vehicle (didnt kill any kittens this time) and if anything a Wrangler will make you a better driver. They stand up better than most in accidents, I was hit head on in late September early October of this past year by a drunk driver doing 40+mph. Needless to say I drove home that night and his cavalier was totaled. As for handling, I think it handles great, I can out run my friends Chevy Colorado in the twisties, and thats without a swaybar.
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Old 03-03-2013, 08:32 PM   #29
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I was going to say something similar. Thanks.
I have counted no less than three more "car" references since your post. Bang head
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Old 03-03-2013, 08:56 PM   #30
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I'm 17 and I got my first jeep 4 days ago. I got a well taken care of 1990 YJ islander for 5800$. I love it. Although I can say, a lot of people out age couldn't handle a stick jeep. I read someone else on here posted jeeps make you a more defensive driver, and the definitely do that. If you can't think on your toes and make quick decision, I wouldn't get one. If you can't stay focused on what you are doing, don't get one. If you aren't familiar with a stick, GET A AUTOMATIC. My jeep is a stick and while I like it, it can be a pain. It's very different from many other sticks I have driven.

Now to talk about something you actually care about reading, jeeps are coolest thing ever.
Definite chick magnet
Superior off road, on trails.
And what's cooler than a convertible?

So my personal opinion coming from someone who has been exactly where you are,
Get one, but get a automatic. Unless you know you can handle the stick or at least test out how they drive and get a good feel for the clutch.

Hope this helps

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