Hi guys! This is my first thread here. I have read alot of threads and forums on this site and am quite fascinated with the experience and expert opinions users have to offer. I consider this as the best place to take advice and suggestions relating automobiles. I'll be honest with you, I have absolutely no idea about engines or other bells and whistles of vehicles. I can drive one that is all. So, let me get down to my questions:
I do not own a car right now but I am planing to buy my first. I have a big thing for Honda accord 1988-1990 model and I really like them. But here is the thing. The ones that are in good appearence seem to have their original stock engines and the ones with not so good appearence (damaged bodies, rusted etc) are equipped with later model engines (1997-2005). My common sense tells me that a metal body that has been out in the open for 25+ years will defitly have some wear and tear(rust). Also, I beleive An engine that has been out and running for 25+ years doesnt have much years left of it and will definetly go down sooner or later. Here are my concern for making a final decision whether or not to purchase an accord 1988-1990 as my first car.
1) In case I find a good one with not so good stock engine, can it be swapped with a civic engine (2005 model and above). By swapping, I mean, will a later model engine fit accord 88-90 bolt to bolt without alteration of the body? If not, what engine(late/new models) can fit bolt to bolt?
2) How much would a good condition engine (or new) cost? How much would a mechanic charge for working(swapping) on it? I have a low budget so I am making sure I'll have the money before I proceed.
3) They say Honda's maintenance is expensive? Is that true? Why? I mean, isnt all you have to do is change the engine oil and have it tuned?
4) I've read Accord 88-90 has a carburator engine and the new engines dont have a carburator? Is that good or bad? I mean if swapping with a new model is an option, where would the carburator go?
5) If engine is swappable, what can I expect from the car in terms of performance after it is swapped. Change in drive, some electronics disconnected, AC performance whatever?
6) I would appreciate any of your expert opinions even if they are not answering my questions. If you have something new to advice me, please do so. Kindly highlight the problems I can come across if I purchase this car.
7) Please advice how to purchase this car? I mean how to make sure everything is in place? Where can I find a good mechanic to take along? How to cut a deal with him?
8) Please suggest any good mechanics you may know that are experts in engine swapping. I'm asking for an expert who is absolutely sure what to do and how to do it and not someone who practices to learn and get experience. I can not run to a mechanic again and again as I have a very busy schedule.
9) I will not buy a car if buying it means I have to visit a mechanic every now and then. So if you guys think its a bad idea to go for accord 88-90 as my first car, please be blunt about it.
10) In case if you guys do not recommend me buying the accord as my first car, I have also thought of Hyundai Santro Executive(2004-2006 model). Also please let me know what you guys think of Santro and what would the pros and cons be in buying it. They say it's parts are expensive. Is it true? How expensive can they be, its a 1000cc car?
11) I'm in Lahore. If the registeration of the car is from Karachi, should that be a concern? Will I have any problem driving a Karachi registered vehicle in Lahore?
I know the thread is quite long but knowing how much everyone in Pakwheels love cars, I dont think anyone will have issues in reading my low level basic questions and answering them with their expert opinion and experience. Thank you guys! Looking forward to read what you suggest.