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Which Hatchback?



  • canuck785canuck785 Posts: 160
    i did look at the reno and the aerio too, but did not drive them yet...the SX4 replaces the aerio so 2006 should be the last suzuki produces this model. for the Reno, i thought I had found MY car, but the reviews were not that good, a lot of new owners experienced troubles with the starter and reliabilty wasn,t that good in general. Considering all the other options that are out there, i figured I could look at something else.
    the SX4 is really an appealling little car, has lots of goodies plus AWD available with auto or 5 spd.
    as you said, if awd is a priority, got for it. I am debating the "necessity" factor, my last cars were a JEEP Wrangler, when I was still in canada and then a Cherokee in kansas, but now I am not really sure if I really need it here. The MPG are also a bit lower with the SX4 , 28 mpg highway. if you consider that the Reno gets a 31 highway rating and it's not a AWD, i guess it is not bad :)
    As i mentioned in other post, the location of the dealership is something to consider in my case, because most of them are at leat 50 miles + away, except the chevy/pontiac ones.
  • doohickiedoohickie Posts: 949
    for the Reno, i thought I had found MY car, but the reviews were not that good, a lot of new owners experienced troubles with the starter and reliabilty wasn,t that good in general. Considering all the other options that are out there, i figured I could look at something else.

    That's pretty much the conclusion I reached. The Reno got so-so reviews with respect to handling and acceleration, but I though it was fine. Still, the relationship between Suzuki and GMDAT is not the smoothest, so that kind of scared me. I thought the exterior body style of the Reno was great though; a real eye-catcher for me (as a hatchback lover).
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,624
    I guess I had a much different opinion of the Reno. I drove to the Suzuki dealer in my Elantra GT, so I had a pretty close comparison. IMO, there was no comparison. The Reno's engine was thrashy, the auto transmission was unreponsive, and the handling mushy compared to the Elantra. The interior was ok (its best feature IMO) and there was good room in the back seat, but I didn't see any advantage over the interior of the Elantra GLS or GT hatches, and I liked the fabric/leather on the Elantra better than on the Reno. Additionally, the switchgear was not nearly as smooth as that on the Elantra, and the Elantra has a larger cargo area. To top it off, there was no significant price advantage for the Reno with rebates considered. Plus the Elantra has a better warranty, a better reliability track record, and Suzuki dealers are few and far between (so dealer service is harder to come by). So I couldn't see any reason whatsoever to get a Reno.
  • canuck785canuck785 Posts: 160
    I thought the exterior body style of the Reno was great though; a real eye-catcher for me (as a hatchback lover).

    I am with you on this one, I just love hatchback cars!
    2 or 4 door sedan doesn't do anything for me!

    someone mentioned to me in a post, not sure if it is in this forum, but he said that getting the new hyundai accent hach was a no brainer versus the aveo. well I got my brochure in the mail yesterday and this seems like a good little car!! I also love the choice of bold colors! :)

    I was pretty set on getting a 4 door for pratical reasons but maybe it is worth giving it a "drive"!! :)

    what do you guys think about that new 2007 hyundai accent?

    "my" nissan dealer just receive "my" versa yesterday, might be going to test it this w/e ;) but for some reason, this car just leaves me " blah" dont know why but it just does :(
    i say "my" because he had to order a few and since we were already communicating about a versa, he sent me an email asking me which trim/color and tranny I would like and that he would order it according to it, since he had to order a couple anyways, i thought that was very nice of him to offer and to actually do it! :)
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,624
    Definitely take the Accent for a drive--preferably the SE. Fun little car to drive, great handling. If you don't often put large adults in the back seat, it could be a good choice for you. The Versa's back seat is much better for big people.
  • doohickiedoohickie Posts: 949
    Heck, I can't put adults in my Elantra's back seat for long trips (then again, my sons are 6'-5" & 6'-4"...)
  • doohickiedoohickie Posts: 949
    It's really more of a wagon, but the Chevy HHR is growing on me a bit. It's maybe a little larger and more expensive than most of the hatches discussed here, but I kind of like its retro, yet understated, styling. A friend has one and I've grown used to its looks. I think they did an especially nice job on the rear end and tail lights. Where the Caliber, for instance, has these round lights divided into quarters (which is just clunky design, imo), the HHR has a pair of true round lights on each side that are just plain circles (not divided in half or anything). I like the simplicity.

    It looks like a lot of car for the money. I haven't driven one though, so I really don't know.

    I almost hate to say it because I've never liked the brand, but Chevies are starting to grow on me. The Aveo was johnnie-on-the-spot- available in mass quantities when gas prices went up; the Cobalt sedan has transformed itself in my mind from a Cavalier follow-on to something that more resembles the Mazda3 sedan, and the HHR seems like a practical smallish family wagon.

    What's this world coming to? :confuse:
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,624
    I wouldn't want to put a big adult in the back of my Elantra for a long trip either. But I've had people 6'+ back there for 2-3 hour trips with no complaints. For the long trips, that's what my minivan is for. :)
  • I "found" my Reno in Oct '05. It seemed like a decent car with lots of extras when I test drove it and the folks at Oak Ridge Suzuki were great until I brought it in for service and they acted like I was complaining for nothing when I told them I couldn't get it started. I literally cranked the thing two dozen times one afternoon in the lot at work trying to get home for an appointment. I was so embarrassed about having been suckered into buying this car. I had owned an Alto (a mini car not imported to this country) fifteen years ago and loved it, so thought I'd go with another Suzuki. BIG MISTAKE!!!
    The fix for the starter problem resulted in a 10% reduction in already poor gas mileage, from 22 to 20 (I had gotten 17 over the exact same terrain with my '02 Silverado Reg Cab!) It also seems to have caused the engine to rev to 2500 and ease down for several seconds immediately upon starting it, definitely not something I wanted it to continue doing into the winter months! So they recently reprogrammed it to 2000 rpm. Is that normal starting rpm?
    I have gotten 35 mpg with this car on the highway, so it's a great car in that regard. But as I do most of my driving on hilly, twisty, and tight east Tennessee roads I have no confidence whatsoever in it's performance or handling.
    If you have an extra few grand and are wanting an AWD car, I would strongly suggest considering the Impreza wagon. I owned a FWD Impreza from '94 to '02 and it handled great!!! Plus it was RELIABLE. I spent no more than $500 on repairs until it hit 150,000 miles. Not even a brake job! But you do give up back seat space. I wish I had stuck with a good thing when I went back to a car after losing my Silverado. So far my Reno has had a new catalytic converter, and will soon get a new rack and a new cruise control switch. I'm wondering what will be next. Odds are the entire car will be replaced before it goes off warranty.
  • canuck785canuck785 Posts: 160
    wow! I am assuming buying a new Reno is out of the question for you??? :P

    I wanted a 4 doors because i have 2 big labs and a 10 yr old son, but we have a pick up truck that can accomodate us as well, so most of the time I would be by myself in the car. as long as the back seat is decent, my son would be OK.
  • The Reno came in dead last among seven competitors in a Car and Driver review. I'm sure it would've been even worse had more competitors been reviewed. Even the Hyundai Accent and Kia Rio beat it out and I do not consider those great cars.

    Like you, I was looking for room in a small package. I have kids and needed the room and Reno looked good "on paper". I felt like I did my due diligence at the time because no web sites discussed its quality problems in Oct '05. Since then it's been another story.

    An acquaintance of mine drove a new Grand Vitara for 7 days before its transmission went out. Suzuki comes in dead last in initial quality surveys. Now I know why!!!

    At this point, I would not consider buying anything Suzuki.
  • doohickiedoohickie Posts: 949
    I felt like I did my due diligence at the time because no web sites discussed its quality problems in Oct '05.

    I bought in October 05 and I didn't buy the Reno because of quality concerns I heard about on forums. Not so much here, but over on From that forum, I found this article where Suzuki blames Daewoo (makers of the Reno) for their reliability problems. It was published in August 05, and it wasn't so much the reliability problems themselves that scared me off; it was the way Suzuki pointed the finger at their "partner" without trying to put a positive PR spin on it as automakers typically do.

    Suzuki blaming poor initial quality scores on GM Daewoo-produced vehicles.

    A quote from the article:

    Suzuki had 151 problems per 100 vehicles in this year's study, up from 149 last year. The industry average was 118.

    "One reason for this, to be honest, is because we added (GM Daewoo) cars," Ono says.

    Among other steps, he says, they agreed to require GM Daewoo to review its engineering and suppliers. "Parts from suppliers are not always controlled well."

    GM Daewoo officials won't say what they're doing to remedy the problems with the cars GM Daewoo is building.
  • hey guys, the CR issue for dec. 06 is out!
    they tested the Honda Fit, Hyundai Accent, Kia Rio, Nissan Versa and the Toyota Yaris
    (all 2007 and both sedan and hatchback)
    this is basically all the cars that are discussed on this forum.

    anyways, the ONLY one the recommended was the FIT.
    i guess you have to buy the magazine to get the full evaluation.

    not sure I agree with everything they said but it was still interesting to read!
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,624
    I'm not surprised they recommended only the Fit for now. They typically only recommend cars that have an Average or better reliability record. Most of these cars are too new to have a record. The Fit is a five-year-old design and is known to be reliable, so I guess CR figured it was safe to assume the car would be reliable in its North American incarnation.
  • Hello,
    I am in the market to buy an Elantra GT hatchback. I was looking at used ones, but found a dealer that has 1 new 06 left. It is an AT, with no extra options (like ABS or sunroof). The invoice according to Edmunds is $15,692, and the dealer is offering a $1000 rebate. Now reading this forum, I see where people have gotten their cars for around $14,000. Would a dealer sell under invoice? Sorry, I'm new at the whole car buying experience. Just looking for some advice on what price to shoot for. ANY help would be appreciated. Thanks! :)
  • yeah, that would make sense but what about the Yaris? correct me if iam wrong but it has been in the asian market for a few yrs? and the versa called tidia (or something like that) in asia, also been on the market over there for a few yrs.
    the versa got a really poor note on breaks BTW.
    from what i remember in the tests, the other cars did not score that bad overall but they just recomended the Fit, which is THE most expensive of the group :mad:
    the more I shop around, the more I am undecided ! :confuse:
    If i was to buy today, i'd get a used honda element ex AWD! not a hacht but i would sure "Fit" ;) all my needs!
  • tsgeiseltsgeisel Posts: 352
    Ordinarily, possibly yes, but...

    The benefits you have going for you are: It's an '06 with '07s out. It doesn't have the sunroof package (which I'm loving). It's still unsold.

    The problem you have is that the new '07s don't come in a hatchback, so the dealership can sort-of afford to hold onto it, until they find someone who has to have a hatchback (like me).

    It's worth trying to go under invoice, but don't be disappointed if the dealership doesn't play along.
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,624
    The Yaris has been in other countries for awhile but not the current Yaris, which is a re-design. The Fit's been in its present form for five years. The Versa/Tiida has not been out that long (a year?) in other countries.

    I think the Versa SL with CVT was the most expensive car in the test, but I am going on heresay. It makes sense though, if the Fit Sport they tested was a stick.

    An Element?!? Well, different strokes for different folks I guess...
  • from what I am reading, they tested the Fit sport version.
    when you look at the articles, the prices ranges are
    13,850/15,170 for the fit
    12,550/14,550 for the versa
    that's why i said the Fit was the most expensive one.
    but if you go at the comparision table then the versa is quoted at 16,675?!
    anyways, the Fit still the only one the recommend.

    on another note, even if it does "fit" this forum, I always loved the Element since it came out. I just happen to like the boxy style! I owned a wrangler for yrs, then a cherokee (both box like) i was considering the xB and if i'd win the lottery, i'd get myself a nice H3. i dont know why but the square/box shape is just very appealing to me. ;)
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,624
    The actual prices-as-tested are quoted in the comparison table. The other table gives base prices.

    CR actually recommends the Fit, xB, and Focus ZX3 (but only the Fit was tested this time). They will recommend the Versa, Rio, and Accent if they achieve at least an Average predicted reliability rating in the future.

    Because there were both sedans and hatches reviewed, I put my overall impressions into the Low-End cars discussion, here:

    backy, "Low End Sedans (under $16k)" #3704, 6 Nov 2006 9:17 am
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