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What Would It Take for YOU to buy a diesel car?



  • gagricegagrice San DiegoPosts: 28,850
    The Passat TDI with manual trans shows a 17.5 gallon tank. Rated 43 highway mileage. They have an Edmund's TMV below invoice right now.
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    edited January 2013
    Luckily Fitz has all brands (except Ford) and no haggle prices so I can compare easily. Loaded TDI DSG sunroof/navi at $29.9k would be the priciest car on my list, and I'm not even into sedans. Plus it is big for a city car.

    Loaded Golf DSG Nav/roof is $27,650, and that's the VI. $24.5k for a basic DSG.

    The Golf has a nicer interior, but I don't think it gets the panoramic moonroof, does it? I think only the A3 gets that, but then the prices go even higher.

    Mazda3 is a good value and they have a loyalty rebate. I got a quote for $17.6k and it has things you don't expect at that price - soft touch dash, leather steering wheel cover, alloys, multilink vs twist beam suspension, etc.

    Not a fan of the visibility, and the size is a tad big. Loaded ones don't appeal to me as the moonroof is tiny and so is the Nav screen (5.8" is smaller than my Magellan).

    Elantra GT has the panoramic moonroof I want but a small tank and disappointing mileage. They are amazing values, but I doubt the twist beam will match the Golf and Mazda's handling. Great car for the non car guy.

    Ford's DSG scares me, and mileage sucks, and the tank is small. 3 strikes.

    Maybe if Hyundai added DI to the Elantra I'd look again. For now I will polish the Miata and pray for this cold to stop.

    PS this will be a 90% city driven car. I should get a $199 Leaf lease like q did
  • gagricegagrice San DiegoPosts: 28,850
    PS this will be a 90% city driven car. I should get a $199 Leaf lease like q did

    If you can make your commute in 60 miles it is a good choice as commuter. Maybe the Fiat E would be fun too.
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    edited January 2013
    26 miles round trip, so range works easily. Though I would use it for a few other things, just never highway trips.

    I do need to expand my search. Unlike most Americans, I like small cars, the lighter the better. I'd prefer a Polo over a Golf, if they sold it here.

    500 Abarth has a tiny gas tank - 10.5 gallons. Plus it drinks premium. The gas seat is barely useable so I'd just keep my Miata. Had not thought about a 500E, but why get a back seat if it's almost useless? 500C didn't feel all that open when I checked it out.

    Cooper is OK at 13.2 gallons, but it also wants premium, and they ain't cheap.

    Prius C has a ridiculously small gas tank at 9.5 gallons. I imagine about 8 gallons before the low fuel light goes on. Pointless.

    Regular Prius feels too big. Does well in the city, though, and 11.9 gallons at 50mpg means good city range. I'm just not sure if I'm ready to claim that my farts don't stink. LOL

    Jetta TDI SW loaded up runs $29.3k. They don't have base models ($26.5k per TrueCar). Not sure I want a Golf V chassis when the Golf VII is coming out, especially not for a premium price.

    A3 TDI starts at $27 something? Is that right? That's actually not bad. (edit: no, diesel over $30k MSRP) I'd want the pano moonroof, though, for sure. TrueCar has the TDI Premium at $29 something, Premium Plus in the 30s.

    Going in the other direction, Sonic has a 12.2 gallon tank, not bad. I should drive a 1.4T

    Spark's tank is useless - 9.2 gallons. It's kind of toy-like anyway. Same for Scion iQ, Smart ForTwo.

    Also the Fit's achilles heel - 10.6 gallons. Mom owns one, and they're good city cars. Would not rule it out.

    Fiesta has a decent tank, 12.2 gallons. A friend here at work owns one and I drove it, not sure about that auto trans. She had to replace hers, though Ford did cover it. Aren't they made in Mexico? I don't trust reliability on those.

    Accent/Rio have 5 doors, but smallish tank at 11.4 gallons. DI at that price point is a plus, but the 14-18 gallon tanks will go farther between fillups.

    Veloster has a 13.2 gallon tank, but I wonder if that's a fun car or just LOOKS like a fun car. My daughter is too tall for that back seat, too, so for me it's basically a 2 seater. They offer a panoramic moonroof. Again, Hyundai has a great package but it's not necessarily an enthusiast's car. I may go drive one to see if it's real or pretend. I think all the little Korean cars use a twist beam, not exactly state of the art.

    Mazda6 diesel looks good on paper, but it is bigger than I want. I'd rather have a 3 or even a 2 diesel.

    Cruze diesel will only be a sedan. The euro 5 door and wagon would appeal to me more.

    The new Versa hatch isn't here yet. Nissan cuts costs on their budget models, so I'm skeptical anyway. Sentra is sedan only.

    I liked the old Scion tC better, and fuel economy doesn't stand out. It does get a big gas tank and a panoramic moonroof option, but I felt tight inside one of those when I was at the dealer getting the spare tire chain recall done on my Sienna. It was competitive a decade ago.

    SX4 loses in every single way to the Impreza, even mileage. I test drove one for my brother and we actually got hit (!) during the test drive. That thing is a tin can. Also orphan brand now. No thanks.

    Yaris has a 4EAT and just 11.1 gallons and ... ZZZ.

    Glad I'm not poor. :D

    And .... that's it. A to Z.

    Edit: Found the Audi configurator for the A3 TDI. Gotta get Premium Plus for the $1100 pano option to show up, so $34,245. Add the cold weather package, I'm at $34,745, and that's without Navi. Ouch.
  • dudleyrdudleyr Posts: 3,426
    I really prefer the smaller vehicles as well. Loved my '80 Scirocco (1,950 lbs). If I got something without a real back seat then it is basically a 2 seater. With a real back seat we can leave the minivan at home on occasion. My wife won't even drive my '07 Accord, but she likes the '13 enough that she will drive it, so that save a bunch of fuel not using the minivan. Also saves it wear and tear so it will last until the kids are gone. Then I can get a BRZ with a stick for fun ( or the new skyactiv miata) and a small diesel for road trips.

    I drove the Fiesta and it was great fun with the stick. Not crazy about the other fords (fusion) with the tiny turbo engines - slow, bad gas mileage and not sure about reliability. Nice looking though.

    If I was still in the city I would probably have golf TDI and Mazda 3 at top of the list. Golf would probably win with its shorter length for better parking and better mpg with tdi. Lets see what the new Mazda3 brings to the table. A diesel in that would be very nice.
  • ruking1ruking1 Posts: 14,705
    Given what I am reading it seems a gasser would fit a lot of your variables better. Indeed keeping the Miata seems the most cost effective and logical. You own it outright to start. :D
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    edited January 2013
    Didn't even mention the BRZ, but it uses premium fuel and my daughter won't really fit in that back seat.

    Fuelly has them at 27.3, so not bad at all. The Scion version is at 27.5mpg. Remember the Elantra GT only gets 24.7.

    So the FT-86 makes a great economy car. :D

    Nah, the Miata was an indulgence, doubt I'll do that again, unless it's a project car or something.
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    Yeah it costs $17,612 less than the cheapest car on my short list. :D

    That buys a lot of fuel.

    When is the Golf VII coming to the USA? Did VW bring it to NAIAS, or not yet?

    I like the idea that it's lighter.
  • steverstever YooperlandPosts: 40,010
    edited January 2013
    "Volkswagen says today it will begin producing the Golf subcompact for North and South American markets in an updated Puebla, Mexico, factory early next year.

    That means U.S. buyers can expect the seventh-generation Golf, sometimes called G7, the first half of 2014, or more than a year after other countries have the car."

    VW making new-generation U.S. Golfs in Mexico for 2014 (USA Today)

    Don't see a blurb about engine choices in the quick search results.

    Need help navigating? - or send a private message by clicking on my name.

  • gagricegagrice San DiegoPosts: 28,850
    You left out the Nissan Leaf. Probably the smartest buy right now for a commuter under 60 miles RT. I see they are selling $3500 under invoice. Did they end the $7500 tax credit? With tax credit the SL would come in at about $25k. That includes a NAV. No sun roof option.
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    Not crazy about it being built in Mexico...even the TDIs are made there?
  • fintailfintail Posts: 33,509
    Some might try to fool/tell you that point of assembly doesn't matter - could even be made in China and would be just fine :shades:

    I am pretty sure the previous Golf TDi was built there, can't see a reason this one wouldn't be. The German built Rabbit/Golf seen in NA was unexpected.
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    The 2014 Leaf gets a price drop, even.

    I did the math, a base model with the still-available $7500 federal tax credit and the $2000 state credit here in MD would cost me just $20,250.

    That's quite a leap of faith, though, to go full EV. It would work for my current situation, but what if my needs change? Li-ion laptop batteries last 5 years max, how will this hold up long-term?

    It is tempting, though. Here at work they have 2 charging stations and the first 100 hours of charging are free. After that it's subsidized so it costs 1/3rd my PEPCO rate at home.

    Again, tempting...would be nice to never see a gas station again.
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    Last time I did this shopping around (it can take me 5 years to choose BTW), it was for convertibles, and IIRC the VW convertible models were brought over from Germany.

    That was years ago, though. Some times the rare/specialty ones are only made at home.
  • fintailfintail Posts: 33,509
    I think the Cabrios went back and forth - some Mexico production in the 90s, specialty models like the EOS always have been built in Germany. I am certain Golfs were built in Mexico from the mid 90s onward, but I know around 07 or so, US cars were again made in Germany. Weird, which fits VW sometimes.
  • gagricegagrice San DiegoPosts: 28,850
    Li-ion laptop batteries last 5 years max, how will this hold up long-term?

    That is the biggest question mark for me as well. I think they are warranted for 8 years or 100k miles. Degradation seems to be the biggest complaint on the Leaf. Nissan may be addressing that issue. -capacity-loss/
  • ruking1ruking1 Posts: 14,705
    Indeed a TDI GTG friendd got a Miata for something like 3,000. I think the only thing that beats that is closer to FREE. He loves it. That car would beat me to death around here in this commute.
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    edited January 2013
    9 bars out of 12...

    Imagine your car had a 12 gallon gas tank, yet it only started taking 10 gallons. They're saying that's OK? Way to aim low, Nissan.

    You can see my concern.

    Edit: my best friend's wife works for them, so I should ask if they have S plan pricing or equivalent (she did when she was at Ford).
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    That car would beat me to death around here in this commute

    DC roads suck and that's probably the #1 thing that has me looking elsewhere. #2 is range.

    I priced a 16" wheel and tire package, but with the TPMS it ends up costing a small fortune.

    I should find another owner who wants to trade for a 17" set.
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    edited January 2013 - ng-52937.html#.UQBGT3kXGLc.facebook

    2. Limited 4X4 - MSRP $37,595 ($36,192) + $995 destination

    with 3.0L V6 TURBO DIESEL ENGINE (EXF) + 8-SPD AUTO 8HP70 TRANS (DFD) 22H (Late Availabilty) [MSRP $4,500 / INV. $ 4,005]

    By my math that's $43,090 for the cheapest diesel. Boo.
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