Well, we can start with whatever was wrong with the car when I first got it. What it was, I still don't know. It seemed to be running at too high RPM and got really crappy gas mileage (like 16 miles per gallon). Had it in to the dealer on three occasions, said the car was fine unless the check engine light was on. They claimed to have replaced the spark plugs, that was not the case. I found this out when I replaced them myself not too long after. However, still got crappy gas mileage.
Replaced the serpentine belt TWICE within about a two week period because the alternator bolt was missing (??) I spent three days prying the alternator out of the bracket!!
The EGR valve went out. That was a dealer only part at $120.00. However, the guy at the parts dept. delivered the part 30 miles to me because he happened to live down the street from me.
Then of all things, the stupid car decides to start pouring oil out one day. That was the camshaft seal. $257.00 for that one including a new timing belt.
One of the tie rod ends went out right when I pulled into the parking space at home. Those were $50.00 each. Replaced both, just to be safe!
Also replaced complete front brakes- pads, rotors (They were terribly warped), and calipers. $400.00 (estimated)
THIS IS JUST PARTS COST PEOPLE!!! (excluding camshaft seal & timing belt)
Found out the head gasket was replaced at 60,000 along with BOTH front wheel bearings (hub assemblies) Right now the driver side bearing is going out.
The exhaust manifold has a crack in it the size of the San Andreas Fault! $200.00 for part plus $?? for labor. Considering space and accessibility, not something I can do myself.
The clearcoat is currently flaking off the paint.
There is lots of wind noise in the cab due to really crappy seals on the doors.
I have replaced the stereo. The tape deck on the old one made horrible screeching noises when in use. Tried a head cleaner, Yeah- that didn't work.
It seems like the air conditioning is always on. I have like zero power with this car. There's always a puddle under the condenser, too. Even when the heat it on!!! I am planning on buying a smaller belt (bypass the a/c compressor) to see if it helps any.
The car uses a lot of oil now, at 143,000 miles. Probably about a quart every 1,000 miles. Not the head gasket. It's burning it. OUCH!!!