I found a 01 ford taurus with a vulcan, not sure what trans, for $1200 it has 208,000 on it but i'm not to worried about that so long as it runs and drives good. Is there anything in particular i should look for? thanks
Take it for a spin. Listen for the camshaft synchronizer noise (sounds like crickets on drivers side under the hood), check that heater is working, check for even wear on the tires. Make sure all the tires are not mismatched and check condition of air filter and oil. This will tell you if last owned skipped on maintenance. Check for rust and even panel gaps. Ask to see proof of transmission fluid change and other items. Even if all the job was done by the owner, he/she should have bills for parts they have replaced.
I live in northern Ohio and mine doesnt have any rust either.
With that kind of miles, I am willing to bet its on its second transmission at least. That is your biggest worry, $2000.00 if you blow the trans on your way home with it. The other items are just as important, but not as costly. I would also look under the hood at the stut mounts and see if the camber plates have been drilled out. Look under the car for and hidden body damage / bent sheetmetal.
Don't bother getting it, unless it's had the transmission rebuilt at some point. Some of these cars do make it over 200k on the transmission, I had one that did years ago. Just make sure the heater works, the coolant isn't brown or black, and fluid changes were kept up. Check the springs for corrosion, as they often rust out and pop tires in the rust belt. If you have smog checks (we do here), make sure it passed it's last smog. I have a file with all the reciepts I did on maint, fluid changes, ect, so the next owner of my car will have proof mine was well maintained.