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Discussion Starter #1
Hello,

This must be the nth time you are seeing a post like this, but its not the same. Hear me out

I am in grad school looking to buy a 2001 or 2003 Celica GT or GTS (based on availability and miles) or a 2002/03 Acura RSX base or Type S (again based on availability and miles).

Why these years? - because only these fit my budget - yes I know 01,03 celica burns oil
Transmission - Only Manual
Miles - after researching online I can find cars with only over 140k miles for my budget - very important to consider

I will not be racing them nor modifying it beyond HID lamps or Cold Air Intakes or Spoilers! I will be using them daily and will be using them for long trips once in a while, like from South Carolina to Texas! I am 5'5" (yes I am short) so I guess I wont find the Celica seats too uncomfortable (as mentioned by some users). Would the 02 Celica's rev limiter matter for my use?

Yes the GTS and Type S may have higher insurance and require premium fuel but how much higher would it add to? If the RSX has a better aftermarket (as mentioned by many users), do you think regular servicing would be less expensive than the GTS?

Yes the celica looks many times better than the RSX and the RSX interiors and base model has better features, but none of that matters to me. Not the Type S's 200hp over the GTS' 180hp, not the handling of the celica being better than the RSX.

My main criteria in buying either of these is longevity and maintenance costs. Am looking for a clean title so hoping it to last atleast 3 years without major issues. Which of these is better, considering the model year, miles, availability and cost of parts, celica's oil burning, regular maintenance?

Could someone help me rate them based on these criteria alone?

Thanks!
 

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I know nothing about the Acuras, and personally I don't like Honda at all with the exception of the s2000 and one other car I'm currently drawing a blank on. I've owned my Celica since I was 16, and haven't had a single problem. All I do is change the oil every 5000 miles (the oil is still clean even) and check my fluids when I wash her usually about once a week.

Now for model years Celica wise if you want the better performance years 00-01 is the best choice the only thing that can really be wrong is if they were beaten on and not properly take care of. The lift bolts can be broke (cheap replacement if you can do yourself; there are guides on it.) The 02 model year had the lower rev limiter, but then again if you don't mind the performance it's no big deal.

If you want the gas mileage go with the GT over the GT-S. Only the 00-02 GT's have the oil burning problem which isn't that big of a deal if you can be good at checking every week. Maintenance wise, It's not expensive to take care of the Celica especially if you find one the has been taken care of all it's life. Regular maintenance like 25$ for the oil change? if you know how to do most of the work yourself and know when things need to be changed you'll save a lot.

As for the aftermarket piece if all you plan to do is HID's and CAI's then don't worry about it there's plenty out the for the Celica even if you decide to do more than that there is a lot (If you're like 95% of users here you will be doing more than just that trust me lol.)
 

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If you're not going to race and modify, the GT-S is completely worthless in your case. The only performance difference between the GT and GT-S is at >6k rpms. Also, oil burning is only on the GT. With that said, maintenance and repair costs are not too bad considering we share parts with Corollas (the GT's anyway). I would imagine Honda parts are much more expensive.

You're not going to get much of a constructive opinion on the RSX simply because most of us don't or haven't owned one.
 

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I'm a Celica lover as I've had (Counting the one I have now) 3x 7th gen Celica throughout my life. I can definitely vouch for the Celica as coming from a maintenance perspective it's been great. Yes, depending on who you buy your car from there might be more upfront maintenance after purchasing but so will any other make/model when buying used. It's a given that you'll spend more in the first month of buying a used car.

I've also had the pleasure of owning an Acura Integra. It was my college days car and that was also a GREAT car. It was extremely reliable and very easy to maintain. Parts are very cheap and the community is robust (HTech). I'm going to say that the RSX is going to be on part with that of an Integra and will be very close to a car I would purchase if I can find a decent unmolested used car.

If I was in your position, I would scout the used car section and look for BOTH and view BOTH. Whichever seems to be a better deal in terms of condition of said vehicle as they are both going to be high mileage ones, is the one I would purchase. I would then not look back and regret if/should/could. Both are great cars IMHO and given that you're not buying new, go with the one that is a better buy.

Hope that gives you some perspective. If not, someone else is likely to chime in with a better suggestion. Have a great day.
 

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if you're looking for a DD that your not trying to modify past the bare minimums(as far as performance) then get an 03+ GT. No oil burn issue, lower insurance, relatively cheap and easy DIY maintenance and overall the GT can be a very fun car, especially from a handling and twisties perspective, its also good for the occasional pull in traffic but its certainly not going to be a highway drag car. It seems like a bit of a waste to get a GT-S or RSX when you don't plan on maximizing their full potential, not to mention the higher insurance rates as well as more expensive gas, my advice is grab a GT, do Intake,Exhaust,Header and then whatever you want aesthetically and call it a day. The celica is a fantastic aesthetics car and even when i was driving around in my 2000 people would never believe it was a 2000, car has held up fantastically overtime and a well modded celica is always a head-turner. (the same could be said for any car i suppose but thats my bias kicking in :gap: ) GL on your choice :wave:
 

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get a neon. :chuckles:
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Thanks everyone. I am looking at deals on craigslist and have found a
1. 2000 GTS with 142k miles for $6k - in the best condition; garage kept!
2. 2003 GT with 100k miles for $5400
3. 2003 GT with 137k miles for $5400

All are stocks with just wheels or mirrors aftermarket! But the price of the 2000 GTS worries me as it is higher than the 2003 GT. Its in pristine condition. It is above the KBB value by almost $2k for the area. I know a GTS costs more, but more than a later year GT? I am yet to drive all of them and figure it out. But is this normal? Being higher than the 2003s, I am worried if it can be a good idea.

What are your views on this difference?
 

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777
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all are overpriced lol, but for the money and your needs the 1st gt for 100k miles would be your best bet

if its in fantastic condition i would pick it up

but for the milage and the age i would personally pay 4k for it unless it's in perfect shape lol
 

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Lift kicked in yo
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If it's any indicator, I paid 5k for my '00 GT-S when it had 98,000 miles on it. That was below value though. Top value in perfect condition is 6k. I agree though, all of those are way over priced. Highest I would go on the 100k mile GT is 4500, 5k if it's absolutely perfect and has not been molested.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Hmm. I cant find better deals. The GTS is a private owner and the other two GT are dealers. So 5.4 is the final price. Let me try that second GT. But I am kinda firm I want a Celica over an RSX now.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Agreed. let me see what is the best. Just not much good celicas out there for sale! lesser RSX than celicas!
 

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777
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yeah, personally if you can't get either to budge, get the 03 gt, since you don't want to mod much, the 03 gt will be better for you because:

better interior (darker one compared to light gray which is gross)
cheaper on gas
cheaper for insurance
newer bumper
cheaper for tires as well lol
 

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I would just get a GT for your case. Like everyone mentioned, as long as its an 03+. Im burdened with driving 500 miles a week with an oil guzzling GT, the cost of oil adds up over time.

Goodluck OP :wave:
 

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Just get a GTS you'll like the power and honestly gas wise isn't much of a difference.
 

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Discussion Starter #20
Hi guys, I went and saw the 99k miles 03 GT. It was total crap. It would have incurred easily $2000 for repairs. It drove jus awesome though! I then went and saw the 2000 GTS. As expected, pristine condition. Just perfect with service records from 2011. Single owner. Bone stock! New brakes, batteries, serpentine belt, all body panels in immaculate condition. Made a deal for $4k!
 
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