Yeah it'* not fun owning a RWD rebadged german car. Parts cost as much as the BMW parts cost. Good luck!
Generalizing... ALL cars have expensive parts from the dealer. A Bonne MAF sensor was 300 something IIRC. But the trick is finding them through other sources, aftermarket stuff, etc...
Thanks for the link, hopefully I'll be able to find out a lot from that site. Yeah, the Catera is generally a cheaply made car thats expensive to repair. The sad part is that his is a 2000 and it just hit 30k. Plus he has always maintained it so well. Whats also sad is that hes 80 years old and he says this is the last car he'll ever have...talk about depressing. For a while in the 70'* and 80'* he did drive nothing but Bonnevilles.
I was seriously looking into buying a 2000 w/ 35K on it a couple years ago for $7000. I read about many (expensive) problems they seemed to have (water pump was a big one). I liked the looks of them, and the RWD would have been fun, but I passed on it.
The RWD is the ONLY thing about it that makes it stand out. Its nice and unusual to be in that size of a car and feel yourself being pushed instead of pulled. However, I told him it was a mistake to begin with. Unfortunately, men in the 70'* don't often listen to their grandsons in their 20'*. He would like a new car (the new Aura specifically) but apparently banks aren't jumping at the chance to finance someone of advanced years. He only drives two-three times a week, so even justifying a new car would be difficult. Oh and I forgot, the AC doesn't work either...makes life in FLA that much nicer.