Chrysler Minivan, GMC Sierra: Best Used Car Finds For October 5, 2012

October 5, 2012
1999 GMC Sierra SLT used truck

1999 GMC Sierra SLT used truck

The Car Connection has new-car reviews, information, and shopping tools down pat--but maybe you're in the market instead for used cars, trucks, and crossovers. 

Perfect, we say--and here's why. With more than 3 million cars and easy to use controls, The Car Connection's used-car listings are a great way to find the right car, truck or crossover near you for this weekend's test drives.

Here's the proof. Each week, we sift through the listings to find examples of great used cars you can find here at The Car Connection. Once again, our writers have scoured some random zip codes for solid used-car values you might have missed.

We're calling this one the blue-rinse edition. As we've been scouring The Car Connection's used-car listings for the best deals, somehow we've stumbled on a quartet of blue or silver-blue cars, all within a 200-mile radius of towns with "Marion" in the name, while we searched for the best vehicle we can find that's priced under $10,000.

We're here to search on your behalf, too. For our free suggestions on used cars, you can contact us via Facebook or Twitter, and we'll include you in our weekly scans of the listings. Just make sure you give us the zip code, the body style, and any details that might help us narrow down your choices. We'll publish the results here along with some of our personal favorites.

This week's used finds include four American classics--a cop car undercover, a cruiser that still hasn't run its course, and two utility vehicles with more than four passengers in mind:

Pickup Trucks: 1999 GMC Sierra 1500 SLE
125,565 miles; $8,995
Marion, New Mexico  87522

I couldn't find anything under $10,000 in my nearby zip code--outside Santa Fe, New Mexico--so expanding the search to 200 miles dropped me into Colorado Springs and within range of this 1999 GMC Sierra 1500 SLE. It's an older model, but there's still lots of life left in this versatile V-8 truck. It's fitted with the heavy-duty drivetrain package, for better cooling for the 5.3-liter V-8 engine and transmission, and claims to have an aftermarket air suspension to complement its towing package and running boards. Have it checked out thoroughly first--but it'll be hard to find a truck this size at this price otherwise. It also comes with tilt steering, cruise control, and a CD player, though you'll have to bring your own modern connectivity.--Marty Padgett. (See more used trucks).

2007 Chrysler PT Cruiser used car

2007 Chrysler PT Cruiser used car

Hatchbacks: 2007 Chrysler PT Cruiser

146,802 miles; $8,693
Marion, Alabama  36756

This weeks used car search had us shopping for a hatchback within a reasonable driving distance of Marion, Alabama. Given a budget of $10,000, finding a suitable candidate proved to be challenging. Expanding our search to a 200-mile radius, however, we came across this well-preserved 2007 Chrysler PT Cruiser Touring Edition, which has racked up just 68,458 miles in its six-year lifespan. While we’d be the first to admit that the PT Cruiser’s styling is both dated and polarizing, there’s no denying that Chrysler sold them by the boatload. That means parts are readily available and relatively inexpensive, meaning that this particular hatchback still has years of life left in it. It’s been on the market for over sixty days, which tells us that the seller (a Chrysler dealer in Tullahoma, Tennessee) is willing to entertain offers below the $9,990 asking price. We’d ask for service records and run the VIN to make sure the car hadn’t been in an accident; assuming it all checked out, we’d pitch the dealer an offer.--Kurt Ernst  (See more used PT Cruisers).

2002 Ford Crown Victoria used car

2002 Ford Crown Victoria used car

Sedans: 2002 Ford Crown Victoria
56,200 miles; $7,992
Westbrook, Maine  04092

Searching for a sedan was harder than it might have seemed: Maine, and New England overall, has lots of used crossovers and sport-utilities. Within 50 miles of our location, we found an older Ford Crown Victoria, the kind of front-engine, rear-wheel-drive, full-size sedan that has all but vanished from new-car showrooms. The mileage is low for its year, and it's only been on the lot 19 days. If you can handle the low gas mileage (18 mpg combined, according to the EPA), its 4.6-liter V-8 and four-speed automatic transmission should give you smooth, quiet, soft-riding travel for years to come. --John Voelcker  (See more used Ford Crown Victorias)

2006 Chrysler Town & Country used minivan

2006 Chrysler Town & Country used minivan

Minivans: 2006 Chrysler Town & Country Touring
77,763 miles; $8,900
Marion, Iowa  52302

Our last vehicle this week goes out as a search for Jim, who wants to find something under $10,000 in a zip code near him. So we did an open search from The Car Connection's listings within 100 miles and came up with this 2006 Chrysler minivan, an excellent choice for safety-conscious drivers who need space and a few luxury features. We think these are the better-looking Chrysler minivans, too--and this Town & Country comes with a power tailgate and power sliding side doors, as well as the third-row seat. The miles are about average for the year, but the price is a little under the usual--and given our experience, this minivan may have another half-life left in it.

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