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2002-2004 Honda Civic LX $6,500 - $10,000 The
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2002-2004 Honda Civic LX

$6,500 - $10,000

The Civic is well-known to parents and youths. The older ones like these helped perpetuate the "legendary" Honda reliability, but many also fell into the laps of tuners and aftermarket companies. Guys will like the potential these cars have, if they're willing to put in a lot of effort for engine swaps. But fear not, parents - this generation Civic has the 1.7L, SOHC D-series engine. It is supremely slow (110 hp. but efficient (35-plus miles per gallon highway). The Civic did well in crash tests for a compact car, too. So why isn't it higher on this list? As I mentioned earlier, EVERYONE knows its reputation - the book value on Civics tends to run high for what you get, plus they're still among the most stolen vehicles in the country. And the Civic isn't exactly a looker.(Credit: Handout)

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Five great (cheap) cars for college kids

So you're 18 - you don't want to bum rides off your parents anymore. They're probably pretty sick of shuttling you around, but you don't live near public transit. Time to get your own set of wheels! But you're just starting college, so unless you've just hit Mega Millions, you're a bit strapped for cash.

Your parents might help you out a little for your first car, but as much as they love you they're not made of money. So whatever you get has to be less than ten grand - that's a good compromise on both age and reliability.But it's worthless if it's not safe and efficient, so here are five of the best used cars under ten grand. All prices reflect Kelley Blue Book "excellent" condition and dealer pricing.

Vincent Balestriere, Vincent.Balestriere@newsday.com