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Old 05-26-2015, 01:23 PM
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Found an 89 YJ.. Questions..

Hi,

I've been looking at buying a wrangler for awhile now, and with a limited budget I'm looking at the older models. I found an 89 YJ Islander with only 53k original miles on craigslist; and while the asking price is high ($6k) they are tough to find in my area, and it has been unmolested. The frame looks really clean; no rust. It has the 4.2 6. The current owner says it was just a weekend driver for an older couple in New Mexico.

My main question here is the mileage on the engine. The speedometer does read 53k; however, with the age of the vehicle, does this really even matter? Is it more about how it has been maintained? I haven't had it inspected by a mechanic yet but other than some small repairs needed (radio randomly goes out) it appears to be in solid shape. Attached some pics below. Any advice on if I should attempt to haggle down more in price would be appreciated also. Thanks!

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Old 05-26-2015, 01:30 PM   #2
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It appears to have a 2.5" lift kit on it. Also the carb I see in the pic is not stock it's a weber carb which is an aftermarket upgrade. With milage that low if you intend to drive it daily oil leaks may start from seals being old and not being driven much. 1989 is a split year for transmissions. If the tranny looks like it can be split in half Down the center from underneath it's a ba10 which is not the most desirable one.

Also that color is Pacfic blue there are no touch up paints for it unless you get a custom mix I have found duplicolor ford blue is almost an exact match

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Old 05-26-2015, 06:40 PM   #3
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Since it appears to be at a dealership I would ask to see the Car Fax. Also it looks like a different wheel for the spare, looks like someone replaced the wheels and tires. Look for the date code on the tires. "weekend driver for an older couple" I would be suspicious. As far as being unmolested I would really check for any other mods. As far as the mileage it does make a difference, wear and tear on the drive train as well as the body and frame.
Looks like a clean unit, as far as price check what they are selling for in your area, I live in So. california and that would be a good price if everything checks out...
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Old 05-26-2015, 08:52 PM   #4
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Since it appears to be at a dealership I would ask to see the Car Fax. Also it looks like a different wheel for the spare, looks like someone replaced the wheels and tires. Look for the date code on the tires. "weekend driver for an older couple" I would be suspicious. As far as being unmolested I would really check for any other mods. As far as the mileage it does make a difference, wear and tear on the drive train as well as the body and frame. Looks like a clean unit, as far as price check what they are selling for in your area, I live in So. california and that would be a good price if everything checks out...
The spare is not factory but the other 4 are the factory islander wheels
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Old 05-26-2015, 10:02 PM   #5
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Rusher, are you or the jeep in NM? Cuz that's where I hail from. The best kinds of jeeps are the kind that were babied by old folks and used as weekend cruisers, that's what I can tell you. If it doesnt have a top you should be able to use that as leverage.
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Old 05-26-2015, 10:33 PM   #6
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Thats a nice find. If you can haggle the price down, that would be the way to get it, but, that particular color was rare and with those super low miles, it is worth the 6k to someone that wants one of those. If you plan on jacking it up and romping it, pass on it. That would be a waste.
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Old 05-26-2015, 10:42 PM
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The Jeep is actually originally from NM, but is now in TX, where I'm also at.

I don't plan on offroading with it, but may take it on a trail or something. I'd ultimately put it through some upgrades and want to take care of it; mostly just looking to mix into my daily driving and be fun! (I'll be keeping my sedan)

I'm going to have a mechanic take a look and then head from there.
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Old 05-26-2015, 11:33 PM
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It appears to have a 2.5" lift kit on it. Also the carb I see in the pic is not stock it's a weber carb which is an aftermarket upgrade. With milage that low if you intend to drive it daily oil leaks may start from seals being old and not being driven much. 1989 is a split year for transmissions. If the tranny looks like it can be split in half Down the center from underneath it's a ba10 which is not the most desirable one.

Also that color is Pacfic blue there are no touch up paints for it unless you get a custom mix I have found duplicolor ford blue is almost an exact match
Oustanding, thanks. I think I'm going to try and buy it. I will definitely have to paint it at some point; no rust, but the paint is starting to fade on the hood. And she is almost 30, too
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Old 05-27-2015, 12:59 AM   #9
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Have you searched your local market?

Reality is that if it's a dealer selling it for $6k, they probably got it for under $4k on trade, did a spit shine and put it on the floor for $6k.

I'd be inclined to try and find that kind of deal without the dealer in the middle. Or try to get the dealer to offer some kind of warranty or service/repair backing.

It does look clean and may be worth the $6k. There is just too many factors to consider that can't be seen from a couple of pics.
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Old 05-27-2015, 02:58 AM   #10
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Looking clean means nothing, dealerships really know how to polish them. 53k on a 30 y.o. Jeep? Little ol couple driving only on weekends? right! I believe that ! Any of those 30 year old rubber grommets, body mounts, and anything else made from rubber been changed by this old couple? How about tie rod ends and all other joints ? Seals ? You really don't just buy a 30 year old Jeep and not do repairs, some times a lot of repairs. There is no advantage buying from a dealer either. Only trust yourself when buying a used vehicle. People don't usually trade in a great running vehicle for no reason. Just my 2 cents. BTW, are you a mechanic? can you do your own repairs ?
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Old 05-27-2015, 10:24 AM
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I'm not buying from a dealership, buying private party. The pictures you see are from inside someones home.

It does appear even 6k a rough going rate in the TX area (still a little high, but frankly it is impossible to even find something running under 4k).

edit - As far as my mechanical ability, part of the reason I'm buying this is to get better with cars. I was an electrician in the military so I know some basics, and I'm pretty confident overall in my ability to get a job done when it comes to repairs.
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Old 05-27-2015, 10:36 AM   #12
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I recently purchased a 1990 yj with 38000 miles for a little more than that and have been very happy with it. Been making it my own. Winch, bumpers, etc.....
If the jeep is as nice as the garage I would go for it...........

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