Very simply I bought the Sentra because I needed a very cheap car that was great on gas to commute with. During the summer of 2000 I was working a long distance from home and I didn’t want to pile the mileage on my B4000 or my RX-7. Our next door neighbor owned the Sentra and he used it for long distance commuting since it was new. The car was very basic, no air conditioning, no power steering, just a basic vehicle with 493,000km of highway driving. Our neighbor decided it was time for something new that had some goodies on it to make his drive more tolerable. Normally I would be a wary of mileage that high but I knew that car was very well maintained and had a complete history from new, I had no concerns about its reliability. It did have some minor rust issues which I addressed and once that was cleared up and the car thoroughly cleaned inside and out it was very presentable.
That car was very reliable and you could take it anywhere. The 1.6L DOHC 16V engine with variable valve timing was smooth, reliable and excellent on gas and never ever burned a drop of oil. Since I paid next to nothing for it, I could park it anywhere and not worry if something happened to it. In fact one night it was spray painted red and back over the white exterior by some vandals while staying at a friend’s house. No worries, we called the police filed a report and then cleaned it up with some gasoline and went about our day. My friends felt much worse about it then I did. That’s the beauty of a cheap car like that Sentra. If something happens you just don’t stress since you have very little invested! In 2002 my uncle bought the car and just recently it was hauled away for scrap because the rust finally got the best of the body and not worth the repairs.