Before I tell you about a good way to buy a used car, I will share my experiences. In 2010 I bought my first new car since 1987. I had 3 Fords, an Explorer, a Taurus and a Ranger. I traded each of them in when they each got close to 130,000 miles. Bought each of them with about 60-70,000 miles on them. Other than batteries, brakes and tires I never needed any expensive work done on them.
In 2010, I broke down and bought a new VW, I figure this will be the last new car I will ever buy.
Now, how do you get a good price. If you belong to AAA, go to their web site and you will see a link for AAA pricing. Using this site you will be able to price the kind of car you want, either new or used and it will show you the price and which dealers in your area that have that car available.
I used AAA pricing for my VW, the vehicle was listed at $34,000 and I bought it AAA priced at $23,000. The reason it was so low, was because I bought it in September and Dealers were trying to get rid of old inventory.