So my old van broke down and I've been in the market for a new one for quite some time. Taking my time searching as I should. Either way, this one has really caught my eye. Not only is it a 1997 Ford Club Wagon with 6-feet of standing room, but it also has the legendary V8 7.3L Turbo Diesel OHV 444 CID engine. I've heard people rave about these engines and I've always wanted a car with this much power. Still, I admittedly don't know a lot about turbo diesel engines so I'm worried about my ability to assess the van. I get a really good read from the seller and I know for a fact that some of his other vans are priced really well. Everything seems to be in great condition and it test drove well, I just wanted to have a second opinion.
the engine has 283,000 miles on it the car is $8300
For some context, vans are way more expensive where I am (California) and honestly on the west coast in general
I can't say for certain as I'm on the opposite coast and can't look it over in person. But considering the prices of vans in CA and all you've put up there, $8300 still seems pretty darn pricey to me for what it is. Just my 2 cents.
California prices are always heavy and without going to an auction or some other wholesale route, that doesn't seem tooo crazy. The mileage is very high. For that engine that might not be the biggest deal but I would be looking very carefully at the rest like steering, suspension,rust, body work, paint electrics and if I saw anything reflecting that mileage (ie not been renewed or repaired as appropriate) that might suggest to me the price should come down. If it is well maintained, then maybe that price isn't too bad.
When I lived in the UK any suspension wear would fail the inspection and your car was taken off the road until it was fixed. In California not so much and 2 cars I bought (cheaply) recently both needed pretty much every moving part on the front end replaced, because you can get away with that lack of maintenance providing it still runs and drives. So that would be a tell tale; have they got away with that because they can and still want strong money, or is it strong money because it has been well maintained regardless of cost?
My local places will do an inspection for an hours labor. That might be worth doing. Get it looked at and given a job sheet of anything that needs doing to it, then compare that with the price point and other vans out there.