when you talk 2nd hand jap cars, i have agreed with you in my previous
my personal point is---in north america, use NA cars. Detroit is a bit different place, people really are proud of American cars, and realistically, when u buy a car, u have all sorts of finanacial discounts or low rate from big3, but if u buy jap cars, the rate is commonly much much higher.
compare jap/NA cars, if new, they are pretty much the same. mileage is not a key here, lao mei dont really care, even now, the gas is 1.50/gallon, 1 gl=3.78 ltr.
jap cars have the advantage of better manufacturing 'gong yi', while lao mei's car is sort of more 'sha da hei cu', so with time going by, the jap car still looks ok, but NA car possibly stand more chance of such things...
hand handle is broken, lift gate lock is really locked, ...among others.
my personal experience is that at this stage of auto industry, vehicle have no substantial difference, it is almost a matter of consumption mentality.