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1990 Reatta as my first car?

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https://dallas.craigslist.org/dal/cto/d/1990-buick-reatta-affordable/6718099338.html

I have been saving up for my first car and reatta got my sight. This is the one I've been looking at, but I still have two questions tho.

1)The owner (appears to be an auto repair shop) states that the true mileage is unknown since the car only got 7 thousand miles on the odometer which is nearly impossible...however to me it just reads 71733 miles, so is there something wrong with me or the car?

2) would the braking system be fixable by myself?

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Welcome to the forum!

 

The car looks nice inside, the mileage appears to be 71k, which is about right for what I see. My Reatta buddies are going to hate me for saying this and they might disagree but -   I don't believe a Buick Reatta is a good "first car".  They are a complicated car that can be hard to work on for even an experience mechanic if they aren't familiar with a Reatta. You might be able to fix some of the problems with help from this forum if you are handy with tools but to be honest... you might be in over your head.

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20 minutes ago, Ronnie said:

Welcome to the forum!

 

The car looks nice inside, the mileage appears to be 71k, which is about right for what I see. My Reatta buddies are going to hate me for saying this and they might disagree bu -   I don't believe a Buick Reatta is a good "first car".  They are a complicated car that can be hard to work on for even an experience mechanic if they aren't familiar with a Reatta. You might be able to fix some of the problems with help from this forum if you are handy with tools but to be honest... you might be in over your head.

really appreciate the reply. I think I am being too idealistic assuming this is a reliable car with low mileage that will never leave me stranded even it's a car older than myself.

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While these cars are very reliable as they utilize a great drive train, there will be things that will "happen". I have 3 Reattas and have never been down for more then one day. But I carry dozens of spare parts that I can install to get back on the road. Most Reatta owners have a "back up" car and order out replacement parts as they need them and are then down for awhile. 

 Having said that I agree with Ronnie that your car has 71,xxx miles and appears to be a nice car especially for a 28 year old car. 

 The brake issue is most likely that ball like thing next to the brake fluid resevoir. That latch for the gas tank cover is either missing or the slide is stuck and needs to be lubed.

 I would say if you have confidence in your abilities, or have some mechanical friends that would help you, and are willing to invest in some back up parts to stay on the road consider it. If not walk away and look for something in a more mainstream car.

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Sorry to dampen you spirits but I gave you my honest opinion. This is a good article written my one our forum members. You might find it useful. What should I check when buying a Reatta?   Even though you would start out with a small investment in your first car you could end up putting a lot of money in it to get the items fixed that are listed in the Craigslist ad as needing repair.

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You could do worse......

Can you fix it yourself.......we don't know you or how talented you are at auto repair.

The inspection sticker looks like a Texas sticker........that could mean the car has no rust,  If you can give us the last numbers of the vin, we might know some history (where do you live)

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3 minutes ago, Barney Eaton said:

You could do worse......

Can you fix it yourself.......we don't know you or how talented you are at auto repair.

The inspection sticker looks like a Texas sticker........that could mean the car has no rust,  If you can give us the last numbers of the vin, we might know some history (where do you live)

I live in Dallas so the car should stay rust free. I believe the vin number on craigslist is wrong cuz when I put in a decoder it either tells me to check 9th digit or it just gives me some random info of a gm truck.

here's the vin number btw: 1GAFC13CXLB907173

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48 minutes ago, Ronnie said:

Sorry to dampen you spirits but I gave you my honest opinion. This is a good article written my one our forum members. You might find it useful. What should I check when buying a Reatta?   Even though you would start out with a small investment in your first car you could end up putting a lot of money in it to get the items fixed that are listed in the Craigslist ad as needing repair.

Thank you for the info!

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I agree.  Look at a newer, more reliable car.  Have it checked by a professional mechanic before purchasing.

 

 Do a You Tube search for Ratchets and Wrenches or Scotty Kilmer on how to buy a used car.

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I found several 2003 and newer Toyota Corollas on Dallas Craigslist for decent prices.  These seem to be highly recommended by the experts.

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NO rust is a positive but brake issues and AC issues could be pricey  unless you have the tools and knowledge I agree with Ronnie  I cant agree with finding a Toyota..I have a Rav 4 Toyota and part are not cheap either.  A good American is the easiest to get in salvage yards.

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I might wonder if it has been wrecked, something about that straight on front shot doesn't look right, could be nothing.  I would not worry about having a well sorted out Reatta as a first or only car, but an unknown one allows for a ton of "unknowns".  If you really like the Reatta take the money for this one and the substantial amount of money it will need to get it reliable and buy a better one that has a bit more history 

 

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Welcome to the Forum. After looking at the pictures especially the passenger side that show the flow thru vent. There are lots of things that appear to have rust around them. I think this might be a flood car.  Look at some of the door jam pictures and the way the carpet is stained. I think I would move on from this car.

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The info on the database for 907173 .......blue/blue car in Colorado

The vin number posted is not for a Reatta but the latter part of the vin seems to be correct.   They may have intentionally given the wrong vin so that you could not look up history.

1GAFC13CXLB907173  is the number posted above.    A Reatta vin would start 1G4EC13C

The third digit "A" is for a Chevy van

The fourth digit "F" is for a is for a higher gross weight vehicle.....bad eyesight or intentional ?

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I'm only 16 years old and a 1990 Buick Reatta is my first car. I bought the car fairly cheap from a family member and had to do a lot of work to it. I would only recommend it for a first car if you have money for parts which are hard to find and expensive and if you are mechanically inclined. Other than that it is a great and fun to drive car.

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4 hours ago, Adam16 said:

I'm only 16 years old and a 1990 Buick Reatta is my first car. I bought the car fairly cheap from a family member and had to do a lot of work to it. I would only recommend it for a first car if you have money for parts which are hard to find and expensive and if you are mechanically inclined. Other than that it is a great and fun to drive car.

 

Well said!  It's good to hear comments from someone who has purchased a Reatta as their first car. Welcome to the forum Adam!

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