That was the selling price of a 2008 Chrysler PT Cruiser at my local Chrysler dealer in June 2008. Add a $1,500 rebate or “Refuel America” $2.99 per gallon warranty into the equation, and you just might end with a pre-taxes, tag, title price approximately $10,300.
Nothing bad. It’s not bad at all.
On the other hand, was it? There are many long-term factors to consider when approaching one of the less popular new cars that are in their later years of production. Not everything will be good business. But you may be surprised. Join me now as we travel down the rabbit hole in PT form.
If you’re not an enthusiast and just want a “guardian” car, this $10,000 Cruiser might have been a steal in 2008. Even with the abysmal gas mileage and useless towel rack in front of the passenger seat.
People who don’t drive much… hmmm… Let’s just say people who, frankly, don’t give a damn about cars were the target of the day for most of the Cruisers out there. It was a style statement in a world of cheap cars that ranged from fledgling plastic SUVs (Dodge Caliber) to automotive androgyny (Toyota Yaris).
PT Cruisers of the time were typically offered in two packages. Basic boring blah and quite interesting turbo/convertible. This is a shade not to be missed. Sometimes you can find a nugget of used car goodness in a sea of model generation boredom.
The correct engine. The right set of toppings. The correct seats. Very soon you go from being a striptease model to a street prostitute.
So what to buy?
As a long-time dealer and enthusiast, let me pick a great selection from your line.
The entry level model. You like driving? To forget. Don’t even bother. When you see an old PT Cruiser that has a little bold number on it and you think, “Hey, that sounds like a great deal!” ‘, act like you just ordered a sundae and all you got was ice cream.
Look at this sad little ball of melted ice cream. It’s store brand surplus without the actual whipped cream, sweet maraschino cherry, sprinkles, pecans, caramel, and any other toppings you want.
Was it worth what you paid? Think about it. Most of the Sunday ads sell you nothing but cheap ice cream at a high price. In 2008, the real cost to the PT Cruiser came from getting that new taste for a car that just didn’t compare to a good used Saturn Aura. Today, that same base model of the latest PT Cruiser car is a poor substitute for a 10-year-old Nissan Altima.
Also consider the above value quotient of hitting them where they’re not. A Camry SE, an Accord coupe with a V6 and stick, and even the Malibu SS all have one thing in common.
They are usually too much money in the real world of buying cars. Most people try to opt for the popular champagne car at the price of the unpopular economy beer car. In a wicked twist, many of these cars will easily outsell their less enthusiastic siblings.
Do you want value? Get the cheap packaging with the pretty stuff inside. The “old” new car that was well designed and had the excellent powertrain of a few years ago. The used car you buy for driving pleasure rather than the brand or name that goes with it.
If you consider it a PT Cruiser, then all the power is yours. They sure sell cheap.
Source : thetruthaboutcars.com