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New Car Advice, Please

Discussion in 'Bad Dog Cafe' started by soulgeezer, Jun 23, 2017.

  1. soulgeezer

    soulgeezer Poster Extraordinaire

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    I'm looking at buying a new car. My current 2001 Mazda Protege, the first car I ever bought new, is making death noises. So, it's time to take the plunge...

    I started by looking at the Honda Fit. A friend of mine has one and loves it. He hauls *a lot* of stuff around and the Fit is roomy as all get out. But, the reviews are only fair to middling, as it has a small engine and is often described as noisy - due to its CV transmission - and "underpowered." I have no idea what that means, but it sounds like a bad thing.

    I'm also looking at a Toyota Corolla iM, which is part of the new Toyota rebadging of its Scion brand. This seems to be similar in many respects to a Fit, but with a slightly more powerful engine and lots of "extra" features included as stock. In other words, to outfit a Fit the same as the iM, it would significantly add to the price of the Fit, whereas the iM has everything included.

    Now, I'm no race driver, but I do drive on NJ highways a lot and I need something that can travel and maneuver at highway speeds. I don't care about luxury, but that doesn't mean I want to feel like I'm wrapped in plastic, bouncing down the road either.

    Based on what I've described above, can anybody offer any advice? I haven't bought a car since 2001. It seems that new cars include a lot of stuff that used to cost extra, like A/C, power windows, etc., and have a lot of features standard that didn't even exist back then, like backup cameras.

    Any input would be really appreciated. I need to get a new car before the transmission falls out of my trusty old Mazda!
     
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  2. tfarny

    tfarny Friend of Leo's

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    The new Mazdas are fantastic vehicles! I would absolutely go test drive the Mazda3 hatchback if I were you. They might cost a little more than a fit, but there are a much nicer car. I have an 09 Mazda3 which I'll keep till it dies.
     
  3. tfarny

    tfarny Friend of Leo's

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    I would also strongly suggest that you consider buying something 2-3 years old. For the price of a new Fit you can get a low mileage Accord with nice options.
     
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  4. teleamp

    teleamp Poster Extraordinaire

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    I follow Dave Ramseys acvice and buy cheap and replace or repair...
     
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  5. RoscoeElegante

    RoscoeElegante Friend of Leo's

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    +1 on this. New cars are generally so well made that you can exploit the depreciation and have a very reliable car at a bargain price. Lots of original owner warranties transfer to the 2nd owner, too.

    Consider the Hyundai Santa Fe, even if you don't like small SUV's. A good deal for a good vehicle. My oldest daughter has one--perfectly trouble-free and economical after 55,000 miles. If you go new, it has a great warranty, too. Real useful for hauling stuff, too, as the back seat folds down, etc.
     
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  6. Sconnie

    Sconnie Tele-Afflicted

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    The 4-door hatchback market is booming for good reason. Earlier today someone asked about what to buy to replace his old 4Runner, these are the same suggestions you will find on that thread, check it out.

    Drive several, make sure you get one that has the power you want for highway overtaking, and you should be all set! My Subaru Impreza and ones similar to it, like the crosstrek, are not really very powerful so you need to time your passing well when on the highway, but I forget about that every time I check my fuel economy being 30+ whilst I drive it like a go-kart (5-speed manualo_O).
     
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  7. src9000

    src9000 Poster Extraordinaire

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    The Kia Soul looks like it would fit your needs.
     
  8. Jakedog

    Jakedog Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

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    I just "downgraded" from a fully loaded to the gills 2015 Grand Caravan RT. Don't need it anymore.

    I was looking for something that would haul all my gear, get great mileage, and lower my payment significantly.

    I looked at Honda Fit (yuck), Mazda 3 (too cramped feeling), Ford Focus (just not comfortable to drive, no place to put my elbows), and Subaru Impreza. My only qualifications were- new. Cheap. Hatchback. Gear fits. Great mileage.

    My favorite was the Impreza. But it came in over my price mark, and didn't have the MPG's.

    I bought my second favorite- 2017 Hyundai Accent hatchback.

    It's not fast. At all. But it's gets onto the highway without scaring me. It ain't gonna win any drag races, but it gets where it's going.

    Now the good stuff- 10 year 120k bumper to bumper warranty thrown in.

    I just drove it from Cleveland to St. Paul, MN and back. It was packed floor to ceiling with my bass rig, electric rig, and my acoustic stuff, suitcase, sundries. And got 45 mpg average on the round trip. It's rated at 37 hwy. I was impressed.

    It's very comfy, for me. I'm 6' and 210 lbs and I feel fine in it. No back or leg pain, no arm or hand numbness on long drives, and I don't remember the last time that happened in ANY vehicle. For real.

    I'm stupid happy with this purchase. And it doubled my MPGs and lopped $150 a month off my payment. I'll save $3-$4k a year just on that.

    Now, I'm a Hyundai fanboy. This is the third one we've owned, and so far our track record with them is $0 out of pocket for repairs. Just tires, brakes, and oil changes.

    Very worth looking at IMO.
     
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  9. Togman

    Togman Tele-Afflicted Silver Supporter

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    I have got a 2015 Honda Fit (Called Jazz over here). It is ideal for me as I do very little motorway/highway driving. I have the manual 6 speed version and don't find it noisy at all. It is not very powerful (mine has a 1,300cc engine), but it returns in excess of 65mpg according to the on-board computer. It's very comfortable and has loads of space with the 'magic' rear seats. I would suggest this vehicle is not going to suit the OP's requirements though.
     
  10. BigDaddyLH

    BigDaddyLH Tele Axpert Ad Free Member

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    You are insisting on manual. right? Right?
     
  11. Dismalhead

    Dismalhead Poster Extraordinaire

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    Highly recommend Toyota or Honda. Most reliable cars out there, and they get good mileage so long as you don't get the huge ones. Of the two, the Hondas seem to have more "zip" to me than the Toyotas, which kinda putt along. For a while there I had a Honda Accord wagon (until someone hit me and totaled it a few months ago). Now I've got a Prius.
     
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  12. jimash

    jimash Friend of Leo's

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    I bought my Civic two years old coming off a lease.
    The brand new ones are 4 door hatchbacks. And it really is a nice form factor.
     
  13. Guitarzan

    Guitarzan Poster Extraordinaire

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    Stay away from the Jeep Grand Cherokee, it has a seriously flawed gear selector or transmission that jumps out of park and apparently cannot be repaired. All the owners that bought that jalopy are pretty much stuck with the diminution of value attributable to the defect.

    Ironically, I have a friend that is a products liability lawyer that bought one of those before the defect was known.

    http://www.nbcnews.com/pop-culture/...-killed-star-trek-actor-anton-yelchin-n621721
     
  14. Guitarzan

    Guitarzan Poster Extraordinaire

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    Your need a Rincon Continental. It is about the only American-badged sedan that I would want to own.

     
  15. Guitarzan

    Guitarzan Poster Extraordinaire

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    Do you own a business and have a way to expense the auto for tax purposes? A lease is one of the very few tax benefits of working for yourself, there is a 90% presumption in favor of business travel. One can lease and just take the 90% and be done with it, and negotiate in more mileage up front.

    The benefit of leasing is that it may allow one to use an asset that is more expensive that he could use if he had to buy and pay for it in pre-tax dollars rather than post-tax dollars.

    One of my self-employed friends recently had a Lexus lease end and he shopped around for the best deal, looking at Lexus, BMW, Mercedes, Infiniti (all of which he has had in the past on a lease) and he ended up with a Genesis because it was the best deal. It is a nice sedan.

    One can rightfully be reluctant to lease if he has to pay for one in post-tax dollars, because it is not a good deal. But there is much being written about a glut in the auto market, particularly used cars due to relaxed financing and lease terms in recent years, and that may be more reason to lease if one can expense it.
     
  16. String Tree

    String Tree Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

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    Buy one that doesn't break-down. Ever.
    YEP!!!
     
  17. String Tree

    String Tree Doctor of Teleocity Ad Free Member

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    And, has room for all of your Gear!
     
  18. stephent2

    stephent2 Poster Extraordinaire

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    An Impreza would work great for you.
     
  19. 1293

    1293 Poster Extraordinaire

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    2017 Impreza. Tight, quiet, roomy, great visibility, awd, 35 mph around town. Check out the Mazda3 too.
     
  20. Sconnie

    Sconnie Tele-Afflicted

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    This is awesome, man. I love my Impreza but the full time AWD is whats killing that MPG for you
     
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