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Old 06-03-2005, 11:54 AM   #1
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Default Might buy an 88 SSE

Hello, I'm new here cuz I'm interested in buying an 88 SSE. It'* been sitting for sale on the road for awhile, heres the specs:

1988 Pontiac Bonneville SSE
3.8l V6
4 speed auto
104k miles
Blue leather interior
ps, pb, ABS, pl, pw, dual power seats, power sunroof, air-ride suspension, A/C (cold!)
10 cd changer, stock alloy wheels (16")
I believe it has cruise control, not sure.

The leather is a lil cracked like most older cars are, but the body is rust free and practically dentless. The miles are highway miles (from CT to Tenn.) Engine sounds good, no leaks and exhaust seems good. Haven't test driven it but that might happen today. Not sure about the suspension, it seemed ok but I've never looked at air-ride ones. Sunroof doesnt seem like it leaks at all, i looked underneath the car and it looked real clean.

The seller wants $1800, however he'* selling it for a friend who lives in Tenn now and he doesn't want the car in his yard (it'* a busy street), so I'm sure he'll go down on the price. Doesn't hurt that his sister-in-law was one of my co-workers.

So what do you guys think? Is that a good price? When I go look at it again today what specifically should I look for? This will be my second car, my car now is a 92 Corsica that I love to death, but now I need a car that I can take to school with me to MA and be comfortable and good on gas ect. I have to sell my car first but I'm working on my parents.
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Old 06-03-2005, 12:18 PM   #2
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An 88 with only 104K on it? Wow. Not many miles there.

If it'* in great shape and the engine runs good, it may be a keeper for $1800. Check the shocks, brakes, tires, exhaust, buttons, switches, lights, etc.

Sounds great from how you've described it.
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Old 06-03-2005, 12:28 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by adamtrek
An 88 with only 104K on it? Wow. Not many miles there.
.
My thoughts exactly!

A couple of things to look for and use as bargaining chips:

Make sure the rear doors open correctly. Many of us have had problems with the latch mech. seizing up or springs rusting. It'* fixable but a bit of a pain.

Look under the car under the left rear door. You will find the fuel filter, fuel lines and hoses and brake lines. Inspect the lines for excessive rust and/or breakage. This happens with age especially in colder climates where road salt is used in the winter.

Welcome to the club and good luck with the purchase. Keep in mind that we LOVE pictures


*EDIT* Hey, I just noticed you're from CT. We're takin' over!!! Get in that SSE and get yout butt up north.
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Old 06-03-2005, 12:48 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by randman1
Look under the car under the left rear door. You will find the fuel filter, fuel lines and hoses and brake lines. Inspect the lines for excessive rust and/or breakage. This happens with age especially in colder climates where road salt is used in the winter.

Welcome to the club and good luck with the purchase. Keep in mind that we LOVE pictures


*EDIT* Hey, I just noticed you're from CT. We're takin' over!!! Get in that SSE and get yout butt up north.
Well I'm thinking the guy stayed in Tenn during the winter and CT during the summer...which would explain the lack of rust and paint peeling (my car has a bit of both).

As for pictures, go outside, look at your car. :P

And where in Mass are you?

Right now I'm completely broke, in order to get a car I have to sell mine first, so I'm working on my parents and maybe they can buy it and I'll pay them back. I'm pretty sure I can get him down to $1500 or so.
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Old 06-03-2005, 12:58 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by redpsycho3
As for pictures, go outside, look at your car. :P

And where in Mass are you?
LOL! I'm pretty familiar with how mine looks but I want to see one in your driveway

I'm in East Longmeadow. My 90 is currently in Enfield undergoing a transformation.
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Old 06-03-2005, 01:24 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by randman1
Quote:
Originally Posted by redpsycho3
As for pictures, go outside, look at your car. :P

And where in Mass are you?
LOL! I'm pretty familiar with how mine looks but I want to see one in your driveway

I'm in East Longmeadow. My 90 is currently in Enfield undergoing a transformation.
ooo! I'm in New Hartford, by Winsted and Torrington. Enfield is about 45 min away...

Next year I'll be going to school in Beverly, MA though.

So...uh...if I get that SSE...wanna find me a 3800sc too? I was contemplating putting a 3400 in my car now but thats pointless since I want to sell it.
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Old 06-03-2005, 01:57 PM   #7
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Ya i'd go for it, even for 1800. But yea check the lines underneath just for rusting and old age, and make sure all the functions of the electronic climate/radio/seats etc. work. The the rear door thing too. Sounds like a lucky find!
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Old 06-03-2005, 04:54 PM   #8
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have the vehicle checked by a mechanic so you dont get burnt... also a vehicle history report would come in handy too
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Old 06-04-2005, 12:12 AM   #9
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well i test drove it today...have a question though...neither one of the back doors would open, and its not like they were just stuck, but the handles wouldnt connect er something, even when they were both unlocked. is there some sort of feature that causes that? anyway, tranny runs great, i put it through the paces, engine was very responsive, car handled well, very comfortable...i noticed the low oil guage was on though, so i checked the oil and it was at the right level. oh and the oil looked great too. it didnt run hot at all and all the electronics work. he has all the papers for any work done to it, and it passed emmisions the last time they had it...

theres a bit of surface rust on the hinges, but practically nothing on the body.

i'm most likely looking at it tomorrom with my dad, so i'll take pics then...doubt i can get them online though, my phones a pain with that...
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Old 06-04-2005, 12:37 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by randman1
Make sure the rear doors open correctly. Many of us have had problems with the latch mech. seizing up or springs rusting. It'* fixable but a bit of a pain.
Quote:
Originally Posted by redpsycho3
neither one of the back doors would open, and its not like they were just stuck, but the handles wouldnt connect er something, even when they were both unlocked. is there some sort of feature that causes that?
Purchase price just went down to $1400.

How'* it look underneath? I'm also curious about this: ".i noticed the low oil guage was on though," There is an oil pressure gauge and an oil level sensor. If the oil level is low then that'* one thing. If the oil pressure is low then that'* another, more serious thing.
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