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looking at two models. Any input?

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So after the divorce my credit is a wreck So i'm going to pay cash to upgrade my 96 MK8 to an MKZ. At the low end is an '08 for $4500 with 99K miles on the clock Standard THX (no big screen) Straight solid and very quiet inspiration. The white seats could stand a good cleaning especially the drivers. Dash board has a little Woopie in the middle where it pulled away from the windshield. One of the chrome wheels looks as if it was shrink wrapped during plating, no rust or holes in the chrome just lines all over it.

At the high end $6900 is a '12 model around 85K miles. Std radio again (no big screen) Black interior very clean but looks like a burn hole in the one seat. gray car with alloy wheels( up grade?) I haven't driven this one but assume its the same as the other.

First question is the 2012 model worth the additional $2500 bucks even with 15K fewer miles (remember i'm self financing here!)

Second question. Is there anything i should look more in detail at?

I've bought two cars from this particular dealer over the past 20 years and both served me well, so I know he doesn't buy junk or flood cars (seen a few of them here in FL recently!)

Lastly just for giggles. can the "stock" radio be pulled and upgraded to the "sync" with out a lot of ado?
Are you talking about upgrading to the navigaion radio? The 2012s have the basic first-gen SYNC system, and the '08 should as well.

In terms of which is better, that's really up to you, the styling between those years is very different. Personally I'd go with the 4 years younger and lower mile one, assuming all else is equal. Take them both for a good long test drive.

It's apparently fairly common for the dash surface to come detached as you describe - never seen it myself, I think it's an issue in sunny climates...
Another common issue is the headliner sagging in the back - an easy fix for someone who knows where the clips are to glue them back on. If either of them is AWD I would check the PTU (basically the transfer case, at the front of the driveshaft) and rear diff for any signs of leakage, and the driveshaft u-joints. That's probably not an issue in Florida, but I've seen an couple Fusions and MKZs with seized u-joints (rust likely from salt) that caused enough vibration to damage the seals over time.
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