1999 AWD Astro 103k for $5,500 - good deal or over priced?

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1999 AWD Astro 103k for $5,500 - good deal or over priced?

Postby Upstatevanvibes [OP] » February 14th 2021, 3:21am

Hey y’all

I’m checking out a 1999 AWD Astro with 103k being sold for $5,500. It’s being sold from a small town auto shop, the mechanic seems trustworthy (but always have to take that with a grain of salt). Breaks are new, tires are in great shape, no known problems with transmission (shifts fine, etc), drives straight, original engine and miles, no previous accidents, only one previous owner. The mechanic is replacing something called a vacuum (beats me, I only know the basics) but other then that he says it’s in great shape. I don’t know exactly what a normal amount of rust is, and this is located in upstate NY but came from Jersey, but the guy says it’s not rusted out. I’m attaching some pics of the underside for you all to check out. The tire seems pretty rusted out but I don’t know enough about rust to gauge the rest of the parts for myself.

Overall, I’m nervous because I’ve never bought a car and it’s a big purchase for me. I’ve been wanting an Astro for about a year now, and have wanted a van for many years, and this one I found really gets me excited. It seems like a good deal, but I don’t want to be paying more than I should be and I’m also nervous about the rust, or if I’m missing anything else. Any words of insight would be helpful!
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Re: 1999 AWD Astro 103k for $5,500 - good deal or over price

Postby SportsBoy » February 14th 2021, 12:40pm

That's typical for the spare to be thrashed like that - it's a good idea to get a full size spare with an AWD anyways.
You don't really need to worry about rust on the replaceable parts as much as on the body (anything gray in this case) or the half-frame in the front half of the car.
Doesn't look bad for a northeast car, somewhat better than average underbody rust for a 99, just a little rocker rust showing in front of the driver's rear tire. There may be more hidden under there by the cladding though - you don't really know until you check.

But as far as buying it, I'd pass at that price tbh. Having dealt with rust now, I'd take that money and find something super clean in the south and west and bring it back home. I'd go maybe 2500 on it if it's great mechanical condition. I got mine 3 years ago for 1000 with the same mileage but needing some maintenance.
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Re: 1999 AWD Astro 103k for $5,500 - good deal or over price

Postby AstroOafAdventurer » February 14th 2021, 2:05pm

If it has new breaks, I'd be cautious, if it has new brakes, then that's good! lol

I think it's too much, but up in your area you'll be hard pressed to find something not rusty and decently priced.
I'm in VA and got mine for $3200 with 63k miles and really just surface rust on the subframe but a bunch of nickel & dime issues.
Mine is a 97 Astro RWD

You can look further south and west as suggested, but expect prices to go up, but if you're looking for something to perhaps keep longer term, it may be worth it.
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Re: 1999 AWD Astro 103k for $5,500 - good deal or over price

Postby tungtidetungtide is online! » February 14th 2021, 3:43pm

Go west, that’s to much for your area.
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Re: 1999 AWD Astro 103k for $5,500 - good deal or over price

Postby SheldonYoung » February 14th 2021, 4:32pm

Price sounds a bit high.

3- of my Astro/Safaris were purchased with 30k miles or less, in the $5k price range, and every one still needed a few thousand in work to make them ready for the road.

At that mileage there are a lot of regular wear items that hopefully have been addressed. (bushings, belts, suspension components, etc.).
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Re: 1999 AWD Astro 103k for $5,500 - good deal or over price

Postby SheldonYoung » February 14th 2021, 4:35pm

Keep in mind Shipping is a Killer.

The "Go West" recommendation brings a hefty price tag.

Open Transport is generally $1.10/mile, so midwest is about $2k, and west coast is about $3k!
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Re: 1999 AWD Astro 103k for $5,500 - good deal or over price

Postby AstroWill » February 14th 2021, 4:36pm

Flights are cheap, if you find a rust free version, make a vacation out of it and drive it home.

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Re: 1999 AWD Astro 103k for $5,500 - good deal or over price

Postby markmitch » February 14th 2021, 5:20pm

I am originally from Maine and I have to agree with the group on this one. There are many rust free versions out there just take a vacation and find one. Mark
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Re: 1999 AWD Astro 103k for $5,500 - good deal or over price

Postby Leeann_93 » February 14th 2021, 6:30pm

Yep, way too much for a '99 with that amount of rust.
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