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Help Me Choose!



  • suydamsuydam Posts: 923
    I have a 2004 vibe and it has never burned oil. It is a great car as would be a Corolla. Corolla probably gets better gas mileage though. Does the poster want a hatch or a sedan?
  • sandman_6472sandman_6472 Coral Springs, FLPosts: 2,626
    Totally has to keep the increased costs in mind when going the lux route. There's also the "piece of mind" factor as I call it. The piece of mind of knowing that your car will just do what it has to do when it's needed...that with minimal upkeep, it will not leave you stranded. What good is a nice lux vehicle if it's not dependable, if one can't trust it to be consistent and not leave you on the side of the road. To me, this is a very important factor when considering any car. I'm sure other s will disagree, but I want an affordable car that is dependable...pure and simple!

    The Sandman :) :sick: :shades:

    2014 Hyundai Tuscon SE/2005 Mazda 3s/2008 Hyundai Accent GLS/2009 Nissan Versa SL hatch

  • plektoplekto Posts: 3,733
    edited January 2013
    Well, these aren't really "luxury" vehicles. What you are targeting is "Old retired upper-middle-class professional". People who take care of their cars, drive them maybe 5-8K a year, and tend to buy larger and more solidly built machines rather than econoboxes.

    Ie - a Buick or a base model Lexus (or say, since Toyota in Japan is one brand and Lexus is their U.S. "luxury" marketing scheme), a Toyota Avalon. As for parts, you go aftermarket and DIY. Most of these cars have plenty of space to work on them for minor fixes and are straightforward for any local mechanic to handle.
    (case in point, dealer parts for my previous 20 year old Toyota a 4Runner: ~400 for a starter. $120 from the local parts store.)

    I've had terrible luck in the past with trying to buy cars in the 10-12 year old range at that price point. The cheaper cars have cheaper electricals, wiring, smaller alternators, cheaper gaskets and seals, and so on - all of the little annoying crap that falls apart as any vehicle ages. So while that 2000 Corolla might still run nearly brand new, it's almost guaranteed to have a ratty and nasty interior with tons of little things wrong with it. Such are cheap cars when they get old.

    I mentioned the Grand Marquis because it depreciates like a rock as 95%+ of the Crown Victoria (brother model) were sold as police cars and rentals and so on. But about half of of these were bought (in small numbers) by elderly people and hardly even used. Add in leather, wood trim, and a few other nice touches, which immediately dissolves any image of it being an ex-taxi or cop car, and it's a wise choice for the person who wants a car on a limited budget.

    Plus, it's possible to get one in your price range that's only 7 or 8 years old. This gives you a few more years before the age-related items start to go on you. - - This is a typical example. Haggle a bit and you'd be just a little bit above your maximum budget. Not bad for a 7 year old car. Dark red, light blue, and dark blue are the only three colors to consider as they don't give off that "fleet car" look.
  • sandman_6472sandman_6472 Coral Springs, FLPosts: 2,626
    Trust me, to someone like me who has driven small econo cars since 1976, they are lux cars! In the past few months I've been testing different makes and models for when the wife's Mazda3s is ready to go and one car I was very impressed with was the new Buick Verano...very upscale interior and just a bit larger than what we both drive now...I could very well get used to it for my dd. I'd kill for a C Class or a 3 Series but it's really overkill for my stage in life...retired empty nester who has driven less than 800 miles in over two years...the wife usually drive when we go out. At the rate I'm going, my '06 Civic will still be under 50k when it reaches its 10 mark in our fleet. Just makes sense for me to keep it.
    Something tells me that my next car will be my last but I wouldn't mind the Verano when that time comes...and it's the only American car that I'd consider at this point. I was that impressed with it and the seats were incredibly comfortable. The only drawback I found was the view out back...not as clear as I'd like but something I could live with. As an import lover, I really give kudos to Buick for getting me excited about a domestic vehicle and it's something that I would buy right now if circumstances were different! :)

    The Sandman :) :sick: :shades:

    2014 Hyundai Tuscon SE/2005 Mazda 3s/2008 Hyundai Accent GLS/2009 Nissan Versa SL hatch

  • plektoplekto Posts: 3,733
    The Verano that I saw (well, all of them actually at one dealer) all had fit and finish issues that suggested that the employees on the assembly line are doing very poor quality control. Lots of badly fit trim pieces, mis-matched gaps, and so on. Also, it's almost 3500 lbs and has the same HP as a 1990s Buick. As a result, it's an immense let-down to actually drive compared, to almost anything else out there.

    But it does look nice, I have to admit.
  • imidazol97imidazol97 Crossroads of America: I70 & I75Posts: 18,045
    edited January 2013
    I'm sure you noticed they have two engines offered?

    2.0 liter: 250 Hp, 260 lb-ft, 0-60 in 6.2 seconds?

    I've looked in several Veranos and don't find the mal-fitting interior pieces you allege.
  • plektoplekto Posts: 3,733
    To get that 250HP turbo, though, you've got to pay almost exactly 30K. With no extras at all - good luck not finding one of the premium models with no extras added.

    For $30K, it's just not good value. $30K gets you an A4. Or a TSX. Or a G25 pretty much fully loaded. GM should be pricing this closer to what an Accord is, since it's clarly not an Audi or Acura.
  • imidazol97imidazol97 Crossroads of America: I70 & I75Posts: 18,045
    >With no extras at all - good luck not finding one of the premium models with no extras added. ium_Group-CENTERVILLE-OH/1904907113

    Not sure what you mean by "extras." That model is pretty well equipped to begin with.
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,682
    $30K gets you an A4.

    Uh... no. An A4 w/o a gawd-awful CVT (e.g. a 6MT) starts at $33k, no options. By the time you add a few options to bring it closer to what the base Verano offers (e.g. basics like USB port, Bluetooth, and heated front seats), plus destination, you're nearly at $36,000.

    Or a G25 pretty much fully loaded.

    Except the G25 is no longer offered in the USA. The least expensive G sedan now is the G37 Journey, $38,000 with no options.

    You can get a TSX for around $30k... although it gives up 49 horses to the Verano.
  • plektoplekto Posts: 3,733
    edited January 2013
    Odd, I went to Truecar and they have the G25 listed. Yes, it's a left-over 2012. The Audi is a decent car, nonethless. Then there's the Volvo C30. And the list goes on and on.

    The sheer number of cars in the 27-33K range is amazing as of late. And GM simply doesn't compare. The car is at least 5K overpriced for what it is. A more normal car to compare to it would be something like an Accord V6 EX. Slightly less money, way more space, a little better handling, better mpg, and so on. Plus, it has better reliability, resale value, and fit and finish.
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,682
    Better hurry to get that C30... it's such a slow seller, Volvo is going to discontinue it after this year. Must be a great car to sell so well. ;)

    Oh wait... the OP said "sedan". The C30 is a 2-door hatch. Never mind! :P
  • plektoplekto Posts: 3,733
    edited January 2013
    I've found over the years that "sedan" basically means "a normal car that's not a minivan or SUV" in these forums. Things like whether it has a hatchback or mini-doors or is a coupe and so on are minor concerns to most people. Most people who do need the car for four people will almost always state kids or the like in their initial post.

    Here's why I know it's overpriced: In Europe, the car is sold as the Opel Astra. In the U.S., it is sold as a cheaper model as the Chevy Cruze. And also as the dolled-up Verano. The price difference between the two is a bit amazing, frankly. GM is at it again with badge-engineering and asking prices that are silly. This reminds me of the idiocy that was the Cadillac Cimarron. Take a Chevy Cavalier, add some bling, and increase the price by a crazy amount.

    You wonder why so few are being sold? 41K for a first year launch is pretty pathetic these days. 30, 20, then almost nothing... It might not even make it to 120K total sales during its production run at this rate.

    Plus, it looks like a jellybean. GM's 70-80 year old board of directors fascination with French names and styling queues looks incredibly dated. France might have been cutting-edge in styling back in the 50s and 60s, but it's nowhere now. We want more edgy and modern things like the CTS. What we get is overly-analyzed and anal professor approved crap that looks like it was churned out by grad students straight out of design school. We want face-punching, take no prisoners attitude and we get a polite old office worker who is still wearing the same 20 year old suit.

    They have a name for this in Japan. Meat-eater and Grass-eater. GM certainly isn't the former.
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,682
    I've found over the years that "sedan" basically means "a normal car that's not a minivan or SUV" in these forums.

    Or sometimes it means... a sedan!

    41K for a first year launch is pretty pathetic these days.

    Yet you recommended cars like the TSX and C30 and G25 that don't sell anywhere close to 41k units a year. So obviously sales numbers aren't important to you in recommending a car.

    Plus, it looks like a jellybean. ... We want more edgy and modern things like the CTS.

    In case you haven't noticed (amazing given how old the design is), the G sedan looks pretty jelly-beanish. Not very "edgy" at all.
  • plektoplekto Posts: 3,733
    Quite often most people don't care about a coupe vs a sedan enough to change their mind about a car they happen to like after they drive it. The same is true if there is a convertible option for the same car.

    Yes, 41K is low, but remember, that's a first year figure. The G25 was dropped after selling low numbers. I suspect the C30 is soon to die off as well. Now, the TSX is merely Honda being anal, IMO - it should be dropped as well. But it is a great car, unlike the Verano. I guess we'll look at the Verano in a year and know the real story. But GM is not known for sales increases on their models over time. And GM needs to hit home runs now as it's the 8th inning and they are running out of time and money. Not hit a bunt and hope they can get a base out of it.

    And, yes, the G sedan IS a fugly thing. But it handles and drives so well that it can be forgiven. Kind of Porsche and the Panamera. Styling from hell, but it apparently drives world-class. note - I'd love to personally test-drive one, but so far, no dice. Guess I don't exude that yuppie millionaire vibe... :P
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,682
    Do you regularly recommend vehicles you've never driven? :confuse:
  • plektoplekto Posts: 3,733
    I've driven virtually all of the vehicles that I mention. Living in Southern California, I like to go out and look at and test-drive cars every few weekends, sort of as a hobby of mine. Usually I get a friend to go with me - we have lunch, test a couple of cars, and maybe see a cheap matinee or some other time-wasting activity.

    And I've owned a lot of cars as well, over the years. My favorite was a tie between the 1967 Mercedes and the 1975 Volvo 164E. The most reliable was my Toyota 4Runner. My friends have owned a ton of cars as well. Though none of us have the ability to really test high-end stuff. A Porsche Cayman S is the most exotic thing so far, aside from the occasional CPO luxo-barge.

    Most fun car to drive manual in, btw, was a tie between a S2000 and a RX-8. I miss both cars. Rev the bolts off of them and hold on :)

    Worst thing to drive recently was a Toyota Land Cruiser, btw. Just hideously top-heavy and sluggish to respond. It honestly reminded me of a moving van. The second worst was the Smart - the transmission was, well, not really a transmission. Nasty, horrid thing. At least you don't have to pay for a coffin when you get smacked by that Excursion...
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,682
    Usually I get a friend to go with me - we have lunch, test a couple of cars, and maybe see a cheap matinee or some other time-wasting activity.

    Car salespeople must love you. :P
  • steverstever YooperlandPosts: 39,971
    A reporter would like to speak to a woman who is a new Lexus IS owner. If you fit the description, please send your daytime contact to no later than 3 p.m. PT/6 p.m. ET, Friday, January 11, 2013.

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

  • Kirstie_HKirstie_H Posts: 10,822
    A journalist would like to speak to car/truck shoppers who are looking for vehicles that don't have new technology - or a minimum of it - such as touchscreens, phone connectivity, joystick-controlled infotainment systems etc. If you are looking to buy a gadget-free car or truck, please send your daytime contact to no later than Tuesday, January 22, 2013 at noon PT/3 p.m. ET.

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

  • Always enjoying reading you comments, Backy. It's likely I will be looking at the 2014 Nissan Versa Note SV, Buick Encore, and the Kia Soul! later this year. My wife and I both sat in the Elantra GT & didn't feel comfortable. I did drive an Accent for 4 years (2002-05) before giving it to my son. So no question about reliability.
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