New dodge van???

Hello.
My 1991 dodge caravan has bitten the dust with almost 180,000 miles on it. I purchased it used 1997 with about 85,000 miles on it,
and after fixing some initial problems on it(mostly with computer boards), I had a nice sound dependable vehicle, which my family loved. We left the rear seat out, and really banged around with it. Only got about 13 to 15 miles per gallon(had the 6 cylinder) but loved it. It just me and my wife now(kids have their own vehicles) and the car has died and is gone. We dont drive very much anymore, maybee six thousand miles a year, mostly to go shopping, errands, pick up wife at work, etc. We really like the room of a van, and was considering getting basically a stock 4 cylinder dodge caravan. The only option, I really need is cruise control. The caravan with the rebates are almost down to 15,000 dollars. Okay, the point I am asking, is if a new 4 cylinder dodge caravan, is so a bad car these days, that I will have nothing but headaches and regret buying the vehicle? We have considered, for another five thousand or so, going with the highlander, which is a very highly rated vehicle, but five thousand less, and all the extra room, would be nice. And the driver side room, is a bit more roomy, for my midsection, that seems to expand as I have gotten older. So, would I really be buying a big headache, or would I be picking myself up a new bargain, especially the way I drive?
Thanks for listening.
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On Mon, 05 Dec 2005 01:55:42 +0000, J.Lef wrote:

Why do you think it would be a headache? They're excellent vehicles.
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If the vehicle would be like my one that just went bad, I would be a happy camper. For 15,000 its just what I need, but I do need dependability and that was my concern.
Much regards
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He is asking if it would be a headache because of the 4 cylinder.

Lets put it this way, you would not want to purchase the 4 cyl. used with about 50,000 "around town" miles on it.

That should last you 9 years or more. Why not just opt for the 6 cyl. and save yourself the gamble and have a better resale? -J
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Other wise, you figure at 6000 easy driven miles a year, this vehicle should be pretty dependable??
Thanks
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The Newer 4cyl. are more dependable than the older ones, but putting a 4 cylinder in a vehicle that size does not make sense to me. My advice would be to either buy a new 6cyl. or buy about a 3 year old used 6cyl. with around 40k miles and save alot of cash. Insurance will be cheaper too, be sure to do a carfax on it. EdO and Steve W. sum it up. -J
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I had a 4 cylinder with a 5-speed tranny in a short bodied '94 and it was a great car with decent acceleration and nearly 31 highway MPG when the AC was off. It also had MUCH better brakes than the '98 6 cyl 'Sport' I now drive - probably because it was considerably lighter. The 5-speed was only available with the 4 cyl and is a relatively uncommon configuration. Not sure if you can even get one that way any more. I've driven 4 cyl automatics, and there's really no comparison, with the auto being very sluggish on acceleration. Geary
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I have had both 4 and 6 cylinder engines (Caravans since 1986) and my advice is go for a 6. You will probably get better mileage (or no less) and if you have AC it is really a noticeable difference.
Ed
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less)
VERY true. The 3.3s that I ran averaged 22 miles per gallon with a LOAD in them. My BIL gets about 18 with the 4 cylinder and it has been a problem since day one. Really a dog when it faces a hill.
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I have a 98 2.4 with about 120,000 miles. Yup needed a head gasket about 85,000 (not sure but this problem may have been resolved) ..replaced all the stuff they took off as a matter of course...Bought the car used so I don't know if it had the original brakes in it.. but have put in fronts and backs since I have owned it...Almost all city of Chicago miles about 1/2 of that expressway.. however that includes lots of stop and go rush hour traffic.. the few trips I took I got excellent mileage.. about 27 @ around 70 cruise,air on. I get about 14 in the winter and about 17-18 in the summer.. I have a light foot . Has had 2 batteries.. oil and filter about every 4000.. trans F&F about every 36,000... Original CV's, and hubs, 3 sets of sway bar links,, 2 sets of shocks and struts... Evaporator leak about 110,000 replaced that and heater core..(they charged for the part only on the heater core.. no labor) it has original radiator (did follow recommendations for coolant change on that one to the letter). and condensor
Overall I think this has been a fairly good vehicle (not as good as the 3 prior cars.. Acclaims) but I think it's been OK.. I think the fuel economy is decent and contrary to popular opinion I feel it has enough power.. however it is bit doggy with the air on. I think the newer ones with the 4 speed should have better economy and acceleration (just an opinion. no basis in any facts) The seats on my 98 are light enough to move in and out by myself...(I'm not superman.. just an old man).
I fully expect to get 2 more years out of this vehicle with 2 new "systems" (at least)... trans, and rack and pinion think the engine will hold out for another 30-40K miles. I think this could be a VERY good vehicle for you..but I seriously doubt you would be able to find a 4 cylinder on to rent and try it out.... It should serve well as a "run about" as long as you don't have a tendency to "fill it up" and carry 800lbs of stuff around with you..
Hope that helps
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