97 AWD with 158k miles for $2700 -- what do you think?

97 AWD with 158k miles for $2700 -- what do you think?

Postby AdamM [OP] » July 5th 2017, 7:04pm

Hi folks,
I've been shopping for a van to do a minimal camper conversion and take on a road trip. I looked at a badly rusted one a few weeks ago (subject of this thread, and now on sale on CL for parts for $300!).

I was aiming for a max of $2000 (preferably including any required repairs), but I think I might have to go a bit higher. I'm currently looking at this one, which is near where I live (price and mileage are in Canadian units): https://comoxvalley.craigslist.ca/cto/6194131025.html I'll probably go see it this weekend. In US units it's 158k miles and $2700. I would probably offer somewhat less.

Any thoughts about this van and the price? What should I make sure to check for, other than rust underneath? Would you recommend I take it for a professional inspection before buying?

Thanks for your help!

Adam
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Re: 97 AWD with 158k miles for $2700 -- what do you think?

Postby Don1806 » July 5th 2017, 7:10pm

Given the scarcity of clean AWD Astros in the north, I'd say the seller knows that he has a gem there and can hold out to get that price or very close to it. I don't think the price is unreasonable after seeing what's available on the market. The demand for these vans is going up all the time, especially AWD in winter climates.

Hope you can make a deal, especially if it is as clean as it looks in the pics and is truly rust free as the ad states.
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Re: 97 AWD with 158k miles for $2700 -- what do you think?

Postby jess » July 5th 2017, 7:25pm

if i'm understanding the post it sounds like the owner replaced just the rear tires recently?

i'd ask them about that! it's generally advisable to replace all 4 at a time with AWD vehicles
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Re: 97 AWD with 158k miles for $2700 -- what do you think?

Postby 1lowcab » July 5th 2017, 7:41pm

Check up under all that plastic cladding for rust, it likes to hide/grow there. That plastic can hide a LOT!
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Re: 97 AWD with 158k miles for $2700 -- what do you think?

Postby WimpTech » July 5th 2017, 8:57pm

Well, if you are in Canada then I'd say its a good deal with the above notations. If USA, then there is likely import taxes, fees, smog check, etc that may be more costly. Best to do your homework ahead of time.
Also concerned about replacing only the rear tires, 97 is the B/W TCase so I believe that means its mechanically controlled??
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Re: 97 AWD with 158k miles for $2700 -- what do you think?

Postby Thedivingpirate » July 5th 2017, 10:14pm

Got mine from North PA with 177k. I paid 1800 bucks. You should be able to talk him down some. No rust, and everything works..well besides the gas gauge.
Good luck
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Re: 97 AWD with 158k miles for $2700 -- what do you think?

Postby AdamM [OP] » July 6th 2017, 7:10pm

Thanks for all the replies. Sounds like the price is not really that high for an AWD. I am in Canada, so there won't be import costs. I will have a good look around/under the plastic -- thanks for that tip.

Regarding the tires, if it turns out that the back ones were recently replaced but not the fronts, would that have done bad things to the transfer case or something else in the drive train? Any ideas how I would tell if that's a problem? I've read that it's best to switch all the tires at once on the AWD Astros, but I don't know how serious/fast the damage would be.

If I do get the van, would you recommend a new set of tires all around, even if the backs are fairly fresh?

Thanks,
Adam
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Re: 97 AWD with 158k miles for $2700 -- what do you think?

Postby WimpTech » July 6th 2017, 8:48pm

What matters is rolling distance. If all are the same size and the fronts are badly worn, then there may be a problem. Short of that, probably OK. You can measure tread depth to be sure, but a visual works.

I'd pull the tcase fill plug and sniff/ look. If its burned or stinks real bad, it may have been overheated/ compromised. There's other stuff too, I'm sure one of our resident BW TCase friends will chime in.

You could also use that as a bargaining chip to get the price down... just sayin'!
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