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Looking for a truck - ??s
Hi folks, first time posting but I've been lurking for a while. I, like many others, am searching for a 99-03 7.3 and having a tough time finding what I want. Maybe I'm limiting myself in my criteria, but I know what I want. I also know they are out there, but there's always that one thing that doesn't match my list of criteria. Let me list what I'm looking for and then ask my questions, if I may:
7.3 motor - preferably unmodified
crew cab (might accept SC, but have 2 kids and dog that rides shotgun)
Lariat preferred, but XLT would be OK
NO body rust
no lift, or only mild lift
180k mi or less
I've been hawking craigslist, cars.com, autotrader, dealerships, forum classifieds, etc. for most of the summer, so have an idea of what's out there and their prices. I see them for around $10k, which is about my budget. One problem is that most have close to or over 200k mi on them. I will be using the truck to periodically pull a horse trailer locally, so won't be racking up the miles.
I've seen so many ads touting that these engines will go for 300k, 500k, 700k mi, but for those of you that actually have experience with higher mileage trucks, what condition can I honestly expect one of these trucks to be in with 200k +/- miles and would you buy one for $10-$12k?
What if it already had a goose neck hitch installed?
Another issue for me is distance. They always seem to be 1/2-way across the country from me (I'm in N. Illinois). The average person (me) can't go traveling all over the country inspecting trucks. I would assume most of the trucks for sale in my area have body rust, so I'd prefer something from the south or southwest. How have you folks, with experience buying vehicles from across the country, managed this problem?
Thanks in advance for any and all input,