Avoid These 10 Cars Likely To Break Down After 100K Miles

Toronto, Ontario, Canada- August 22, 2012.
Sisoje / Getty Images

If you’re looking to purchase a reliable vehicle, the well-known saying “forewarned is forearmed” takes on a new significance, particularly in 2023, when car costs have continued to escalate amidst substantial inflation. Given these economic challenges, it’s more important than ever to exercise caution before making a significant investment in a new vehicle

Here to provide valuable insights is Jacob Carter, the proprietor of Engine Rev Up, a blog dedicated to the ins and outs of car maintenance and repairs. According to Carter’s extensive experience, certain vehicle models tend to display a higher susceptibility to demanding repairs and breakdowns, particularly after they surpass the milestone of 100,000 miles.

Leveraging his expertise, GOBankingRates compiled 10 car models that warrant a second thought if durability is a priority for you.

Nissan Altima

  • Starting MSRP: $24,300 

The Nissan Altima is a midsize sedan known for its reliable performance, comfortable interior and advanced safety features. However, the continuously variable transmission found in numerous Altimas has a tendency to experience premature failure, frequently occurring shortly after reaching the 100,000-mile mark. This issue can lead to expensive repairs, says Carter.

BMW 3 Series

  • Starting MSRP: $41,250

The BMW 3 Series is a luxury compact car celebrated for its sporty driving dynamics, upscale interior and innovative technology features. Unfortunately, according to Carter, these cars demand high maintenance costs, with a significant number of them necessitating engine or electrical repairs around or shortly after reaching 100,000 miles.

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Land Rover Discovery

  • Starting MSRP: $55,250 

While the Land Rover Discovery is a handsome-looking car, it has garnered a reputation for encountering problems related to air suspension, electrical anomalies and premature transmission failure, shares Carter. 

Fiat 500

  • Starting MSRP: $16,495 

The Fiat 500 is a compact and stylish city car known for its European charm and nimble maneuverability. Adorable yet diminutive, this car frequently experiences engine problems, notably oil leaks. Also, the limited space within the engine compartment contributes to the steep cost of repairs.

Jeep Wrangler

  • Starting MSRP: $29,995

The Jeep Wrangler is an iconic off-road SUV recognized for its rugged design and exceptional capabilities in tackling various terrains. Carter says that while it offers an enjoyable off-roading experience, it is susceptible to rust, as well as steering and suspension problems that necessitate repair work.

Ford Fiesta

  • Starting MSRP: $15,490 

The Ford Fiesta is a compact car admired for its agile handling and fuel efficiency, making it a popular choice for urban driving. Although it’s an economical subcompact option, Carter says it holds a track record of encountering transmission problems and electrical issues, so it might be one to avoid.

Chrysler 200

  • Starting MSRP: $22,220 

The Chrysler 200 is a midsize sedan known for its sleek design and comfortable interior, offering a blend of style and practicality. Carter notes that the Chrysler 200 has a notable frequency of engine, transmission and electrical repairs required at relatively low mileage levels.

Volkswagen Tiguan

  • Starting MSRP: $26,440

The Volkswagen Tiguan is recognized for its stylish design and comfortable interior, making it an attractive choice for those seeking a blend of aesthetics and comfort in their vehicle. However, Carter notes it has gained a reputation for facing costly transmission issues, often emerging shortly after crossing the 100,000-mile threshold. 

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Mini Cooper

  • Starting MSRP: $22,900

Celebrated for its compact and distinctive design, the Mini Cooper is popular for people who like to stand out with a unique car choice. However, according to Carter, it’s plagued by persistent concerns involving oil leaks, turbo failures, as well as suspension and electrical problems.

Tesla Model S

  • Starting MSRP: $81,190

According to Carter, the Tesla Model S, renowned for its impressive acceleration and cutting-edge technology, also demands a substantial investment for battery pack replacement, often occurring around or shortly after the 100,000-mile mark.

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