I have an '88 Grand Caravan that I would never part with in favor of anything newer with all kinds of silly computers. I also have a '95 Grand Caravan that is infinitely less reliable because of all of those computers, but even that is worlds better than the '96 and newer models. My personal opinion is have it repaired. A total transmission rebuild, if needed, will cost about as much as five new car payments, but with a new car, the payments will continue along with the expensive repair bills that people seem willing to accept as normal.
As an alternative, if you can be without it for a few weeks, is to find a nearby community college with an Automotive program, and let the students perform the repairs. They will be well-supervised, and they typically charge for parts and very little labor. The trade-off is you must wait until they are studying transmissions, and it can take weeks to get the van back.
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Saturday, April 2nd, 2011 AT 2:04 AM