People are always wondering, ‘what is the best car I can buy on the cheap?’ Now, peoples viewpoints of what constitutes cheap is ever changing due to the fluctuation of the dollar, and can vary from person to person based on experiences. But in our own personal viewpoint, $5,000 constitutes a cheap car, and it’s a good place to start.
For the average person looking for a cheap car, $5,000 might not sound like you’d be getting that much. But we’re here to tell you that with a bit of detective work, and some time on the internet, you can definitely find some amazing cars for $5,000 or under. To prove that, here’s a list that admittedly got out of hand as we were doing “research” (see going down the craigslist and eBay rabbit hole). You can find all of these cars right now online, for $5,000 or under.
1987 Toyota MR2
How can you go wrong with a Toyota MR2? It’s mid-engine, rear-wheel drive, and is a sportscar. Add to that you can pick this one up for $1,200, and you’re looking at an absolute steal. That price is insane. Sure, it needs some work, but what car doesn’t that is under $5,000.
2002 Mercedes CL500
You know what you are getting when you buy a Mercedes? Class, luxury, and speed. And this 2002 CL500 is the epitome of that mantra. It has a naturally-aspirated V8 that makes great throaty noises, and rides like a cloud. At least it will once you fix the air shocks that seem to have leaked. Nevertheless, after paying the seller $4,500 and then fixing it you’ll be riding in style and comfort in your very own Mercedes.
2000 Mazda Miata
The answer to all questions in the automotive industry is always Miata. And for $3,500, this lovely little sportscar could be yours. Again, the Miata in question needs a bit of work to get running at 100%, but given the fact that you could be going up the coast with your hair in the wind and the ocean at your side, how can you pass this up?
1989 Alfa Romeo Spider
Speaking of drop tops, why not get the quintessential Italian convertible? The Alfa Romeo Spider. Just look at it. Look at the lines, look at the tear drop shape. Look to see that it says Alfa Romeo on the back of it. Not only could you pretend you are in The Graduate, but you could pretend you’re a 1970s movie star who is classy, yet has a naughty side. Right now, the seller is only asking $3,800 for this Italian beauty. Actually, forget you ever saw this, I’m going to get it right now.
1983 Dodge D150
While convertibles and sportscars are great, what if you need to haul things, and don’t want to look like the average schmo in a new truck. Well, this 1983 Dodge work truck would be perfect for you. Priced ludicrously low at only $1,000, this Dodge truck is ready to have dogs, lumber, or new engines thrown into its bed. And according to the owner, it runs like a top.
2000 Mercedes ML430
However, for those who want to have a 4WD with style, how about this 2000 Mercedes ML430. The car new cost quite a bit more than the $4,700 the seller wants for what appears to be this pristine example. For that price, you get leather, automatic keyless entry, a sunroof, navigation, and a call functions. It’s essentially a new car, but for the price of a good home entertainment unit.
2003 Toyota Tacoma
Want to run the Baja 1000, and then drive all the way home in the same truck? Of course you do, and that’s why you need this 2003 Tacoma. A fan favorite among off-road enthusiasts, the Toyota Tacoma is one of the most versatile small trucks ever to be produced. It’s light, nimble, and has plenty of ground clearance for getting over big rocks and ruts. And right now, this Tacoma can be had for only $4,500.
1985 Mercedes 300SD
Want a car that can conquer Africa, be beat to living hell and still ask for more, a car that literally doesn’t have the will to die like it should? Then look no further than the Mercedes 300SD. Using a 5-cylinder turbo-diesel engine, this car is literally unkillable. This particular car is on its second owner, has 153,000 miles on the odometer, and still works great and is only going for $4,500. There are no leaks, no mechanical issues, and all the power windows and sunroof still works. That would be frankly amazing for any other car of this vintage, but for Mercedes, it’s just another 80s big Benz.
As you can see, we’ve outlined a fairly good list of cars under $5,000. Therefore, next time someone says there are no good cars for under $5,000, cue up BoldRide, and show them this article. All it takes is a bit of patience, a small knowledge of cars, and access to the internet and you can definitely find some gems.