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Chronic Car Buyers Anonymous



  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    edited February 2013
    I'm hoping both - more sidewall to absorb bumps, and I got ultra high performance all seasons vs the OEM summer rubber that are hard in cold weather until they warm up.

    I'm on (juiceman) but not very active.
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    The new one supposedly has zero gravity seats, so you'll have to try them and let us know if that's just hype.
  • gogiboygogiboy Posts: 732
    Like sandman I have the Mazda3 Hatch (an 07) and it has been a real gem in 6 years of ownership. I haven't had a single problem to report for that period unless you count the fact that it was hit twice by other cars and once by hail. All three repairs restored it to a basically new appearance. If I have one niggling complaint it's that it doesn't get as good gas mileage as the Civic it replaced, but Mazda's new Skyactive technology should take care of that. I have the five-speed and Mazda makes a very refined manual transmission.

    Although I have no direct experience I have heard countless complaints about Ford's mytouch system as is borne out in sandman's post. I like the look of the new Focus and I know that lower trim lines can be purchased without mytouch or I guess you can learn to live with its idiosyncrasies.

  • roadburnerroadburner Posts: 7,143
    I drove an F10 535i and it struck me as biased too much towards luxury, and not nearly enough towards sport. My first impression? An old man's car.
    My wife also drove an F10 and her comment was, "I hate it; it's a boat."

    Mine: 1995 318ti Club Sport 1975 2002A 2007 Mazdaspeed 3 1999 Wrangler 1996 Speed Triple Challenge Cup Replica Wife's: 2009 328i Son's: 2004 X3 2.5

  • roadburnerroadburner Posts: 7,143
    edited February 2013
    Like sandman I have the Mazda3 Hatch (an 07) and it has been a real gem in 6 years of ownership.
    My 2007 MS3 has behaved itself ever since it hit 60,000 miles. At 116,000 miles the front suspension is clunking a bit; if I keep it(the odds are currently 50/50) I'm going to replace strut/shock mounts and fit Bilstein Sports at all four corners.

    I window shopped at the Ford dealer yesterday; they had a Focus ST with no options. All of the options I'd like(heated Recaros, HIDs) are bundled with nav and MyFord Sucks, I mean Touch- which gets you close to $29,000. The car just doesn't have any personality, and to add insult to injury it's not nearly as quick as the Mazda either. I also hate to give aid and comfort to the UAW(although I might if the car was compelling enough), so that knocks the ST off the radar screen.
    The Abarth is no rocket either, but at least it is an engaging drive; the exhaust not alone is worth the price of adnission.
    Still need to check out an FR-S; the nearest dealer is Oxmoron Scion, which is a store I refuse to even visit. Swope owns a Scion store, but it's over on Dixie Highway, which is in the opposite direction from virtually every other destination I visit in Jefferson County...

    Mine: 1995 318ti Club Sport 1975 2002A 2007 Mazdaspeed 3 1999 Wrangler 1996 Speed Triple Challenge Cup Replica Wife's: 2009 328i Son's: 2004 X3 2.5

  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    It felt too big to me as well. They've grown so the 3 is like the old 5, and the 5 is the old 7.

    The next 1 series is supposed to come as a sedan, let's see something light and more 2002-like than the current car.
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    You should drive the ST. Don't they have a cool yellow pearl color with wild seats?

    I'm more worried about torque steer than a lack of character, that thing should have AWD.
  • corvettecorvette United StatesPosts: 4,280
    "Swope owns a Scion store, but it's over on Dixie Highway, which is in the opposite direction from virtually every other destination I visit in Jefferson County..."

    Make a half day of it and have a meal at Mike Linnig's...
  • corvettecorvette United StatesPosts: 4,280
    One or two of you asked for my impressions of the Jetta GLI I bought last week. I had the opportunity to take it on some back roads earlier today, and I’m still pleased with the car.

    VW’s 2.0T is still an excellent engine. At no time did I wish the car had more power. Most of my driving today was at around 5/10ths, and I didn’t feel the need to put the DSG in sport mode or use the paddle shifters. If you’ve never driven VW’s DSG, there is a slight shudder when starting off from a dead stop as the clutch engages. This doesn’t bother me, but it’s different than most cars, and I can see how it would annoy some people. The transmission does upshift fairly early, but the 2.0T has so much torque, it never lugs and it never feels like the car doesn’t want to accelerate. I might use the sport mode if I were driving more aggressively.

    The steering is less communicative than the E39 (my E39 was a 540i and therefore had recirculating ball steering, making it less communicative than six cylinder E39s). That said, it’s ideally weighted. There isn’t what I would call torque steer in the conventional sense of the car pulling at the wheel, but if you hammer the throttle, the steering becomes far less precise. I’m sure an aftermarket turbo upgrade to increase the car’s power would make this issue worse. New for 2013 is a button in the center console to disable the stability control. This button is mounted just to the right of the keyless ignition start/stop button. I think this is an ergonomic flaw and would prefer that the start/stop button be mounted closer to its traditional location on the dashboard or in the steering column.

    The GTI and uplevel GLI models both come equipped with 18” Dunlop SP Sport 01 A/S tires. These appear to have the same tread pattern as the summer SP Sport 01 tires, with some additional siping to improve snow traction. Tire Rack’s reviews of the all-season tire are not positive, and I particularly don’t look forward to driving in the snow with them. Dry traction is good. I have not yet driven the car in the rain. VW uses the ABS sensors to monitor tire pressure, and there is a reset button in the glove compartment. I assume this system is less precise than using wheel-mounted sensors, but should reduce servicing costs for those who switch between winter and summer tires, as well as the fact that there are no battery powered sensors in the wheels which will eventually have to be replaced. The car rides very solidly. It isn’t as firm as my E39 with its sport suspension, but it’s not soft, either. It doesn’t feeal nearly as heavy as the E39—probably because it isn’t. The bi-xenon headlamps and cornering lamps are excellent.

    The interior is very well laid out and the GLI features a soft-touch dashboard. As some reviews have noted, the tops of the door panels are not soft touch. More annoyingly, neither the glove compartment nor the pockets in the doors are lined with felt or rubber to prevent the items inside them from rattling around. (My 1999 Jetta had a felt-lined glove compartment and removable rubber mats in the door panels.) The seats are comfortable and both front seats are heated and feature adjustable lumbar support. They are upholstered in black fake leather with red stitching, and the GLI has a black headliner. VW’s fake leather isn’t as nice as BMW’s. The automatic dual-zone climate control has a feature which will synchronize the temperature of both driver and passenger zones if you wish. When driving alone, this saves you the trouble of adjusting both zones. Bluetooth works well, but the navigation and infotainment system isn’t as sophisticated as the one in the 2013 Altima. Honda’s system in the 2013 Accord blows both Nissan and VW out of the water. The VW navigation system has a small screen and lacks traffic support, but it does display driving directions in the instrument cluster. There is no Pandora integration. A three month SiriusXM subscription is complimentary. Many of the stations sound the same and I am amazed that people will pay around $20 a month for this and then pay an extra fee to be able to listen online—I get far more value out of spending $8 a month for Netflix or $36 per year to remove the ads from Pandora. I will only renew the SiriusXM subscription if I’m offered a substantial discount. Models with navigation have a backup camera, but no parking sensors, blind spot warning, or lane departure warning. Nav models also get a passive entry system and keyless ignition. The trunk is cavernous and there is a full-size spare on a 16” steel wheel inside.

    The car is relatively quiet, but suffers from some wind noise. Also, VW installs a “soundaktor” to increase the sound of the engine in the GTI and GLI. It’s an electronic speaker located under the hood next to the firewall. It makes an impressive growl at high RPM, but it also appears to activate at low RPM under load—e.g., when going uphill at 1600 RPM. I plan to disconnect this device and see how the engine sounds without this “enhancement.”

    It isn’t perfect, but overall, the GLI is a very enjoyable car to drive. Several years ago, I leased an Audi A4 2.0T Quattro. That remains one of my favorite cars, and there is a lot of that DNA in the GLI. As I have previously posted here, I test drove loaded versions of the 2013 Accord and Altima. I also drove a 2013 GTI before requesting that the dealer locate a GLI for me. The GTI offers a firmer suspension and real leather seats, but lacks the automatic climate control and backup camera of the GLI. Moreover, the GTI costs about $2,400 more. I was particularly impressed with the sales process in that the dealership’s first offer was not that bad, as well as the fact that the sales personnel were very businesslike and didn’t really engage in a lot of idle chatter (“what do you do for a living,” “what don’t you like about your current vehicle,” etc.)

    That pretty much sums up my thoughts so far. I’d be glad to entertain any questions.
  • fezofezo Posts: 9,591
    Punch my card again.

    Long story at least somewhat shortened...

    Late last week my daughter blew up the engine on the famous 00 Accord. I figured with looking at a junk engine (though with 63K on it) still broke $4K on a car with 271K on the clock. I start hunting landing a couple of nice candidates. The one I really liked out of those was an 04 Mazda 6 wagon with a stick and reasonably nicely loaded with a cloth interior. Gray/gray. Dealer was an hour away.

    Well, one look at the picture and she saw wagon and that was a no. Meanwhile, took the other daughter's car over to the same mechanic who still had the Accord and next thing I know I OK the repair. I have it back now and they did a nice job. My daughter really loves the car and I've put her on a payment plan for the repair so she's happy. The stalk to the highbeams needs to be replaced but otherwise the car chugs on. If she gets another two years out of it it was worth it. So that takes care of that.

    Unfortunately that Mazda stuck in my head. I asked a buddy in the business about it and he said they wanted too much money. Figuring I have nothing to lose I E-mailed the dealer. Well, actually I had E-mailed him back when I thought I might be putting my daughter in it. Made an offer based on what my buddy said they were they were going for at auction, allowing for the fact that he'd put some money in it and allow him profit. Well, I wake up the morning that I I ended up OKing the Accord repair and the dealer has sent me a "come on over - we can probably make a deal" E-mail. I figure I'm not going that far to dicker and went to the mechanic. I get back home and the dealer had sent another E-mail accepting my offer (I hadn't answered the first E-mail and thought I was off the hook.)

    Well, that started pulling at me. I fought it for days but the lure had been set. I bought it today. Gives us 5 cars for 4 people but that is likely only temporary. But maybe not...

    I love this thing. I've been in automatic purgatory for a long time. It only has 77K on it and runs like a top. I had lined up a mechanic who checked it out and the only thing he found it needed was a rear wiper blade.

    So now I'm poking through the owner's manual because some of the things like the stereo and the clock are not as intuitive as the Honda or Toyota but when you read it it's actually quite logical.

    Sorry for the ramble but it's late and I'm fading. Further reports coming. I had my two younger daughters in for the test drive and one of them rode back with me in the 6 while the other opted to go home with my wife.
  • stickguystickguy Posts: 16,106
    I am jealous. I love those, but never thought I would see one! If it has a moonroof, perfect.

    V6, right? either engine is fine in those, but the 6 is certainly more fun.

    I will probably be bummed out to find out what it cost. At least you could have overpaid to make me not feel like I missed out on something!

    2015 Hyundai Sonata 2.4i Limited Tech (mine), 2013 Acura RDX (wife's) and 2007 Volvo S40 (daughters college car)

  • stickguystickguy Posts: 16,106
    I have been using the Intergra occasionally, and it is starting to grow on me. Really drives well. Still a bit low slung for me, but I fit. Have to get used to winding out the revs on it so it scoots fine.

    In a couple of more weeks, I might even have to put gas in it, for the 2nd time since I bought it in December.

    Still would move into something more "comfortable" at some point if it comes along, but i can be patient. Plus, I hope to wait out the kid graduating college in may in the hopes he gets a job, so I can free up the TL too!

    2015 Hyundai Sonata 2.4i Limited Tech (mine), 2013 Acura RDX (wife's) and 2007 Volvo S40 (daughters college car)

  • breldbreld Posts: 1,569
    Yeah - those are great. I really liked the hatchback as well. Seems like those wagons are excellent used car buys. Too bad they're not bringing the new 6 wagon to the U.S.

    Back in '04 I almost bought a Mazda6 V6 manual - went for the TSX instead, but have always been fond of the 6.

    2011 BMW 535xi - 2015 GTI - 2008 A3 - 2015 Sedona

  • fezofezo Posts: 9,591
    But of course! 6 cyl and a moonroof. Can't beat it. I've wanted one for as long as they've existed!

    Yeah, it's a shame that the new 6 wagon isn't coming to our shores. The pool of cars that I want keeps shrinking! (Not that I need it to expand!)
  • corvettecorvette United StatesPosts: 4,280
    edited February 2013
    Update: My first mod! I disconnected the cable to the "soundaktor" and the engine is almost silent below 3,000 rpm. It's difficult to tell from the sound whether it's a four or a six. The engine no longer growls at low (or high) rpm. I'm going to leave it disconnected for now, but I wish there were some sort of "in between" setting.

    I suspect VW tuned the exhaust and intake to be quieter than they normally would have, knowing that they would install this device to create artificial engine noise. With it disconnected, the level of engine noise would be acceptable even in a Lexus.
  • breldbreld Posts: 1,569
    Had a couple free hours this afternoon, so the wonderful wife suggested I go drive some hatchback candidates.

    Ford Focus (auto) - I'm not so sure what all the fuss is about with the 6-speed auto. It seemed fine to me. Nevertheless, I just couldn't get into it - roadburner summed it up pretty well with saying that the car doesn't have much personality. The rear seat room seems skimpy compared to the competition, and I like the interior overall in the Hyundai much better.

    Impreza - surprisingly nice with probably the best rear seat room of the hatch's I've looked at. The 36 MPG (highway) is impressive considering the AWD and a decent amount of pep. I drove it right after the Focus, and the Subaru did seem more engaging. The CVT would take some getting used to, but I suppose that's why it nets the high MPG. Still not a big fan of the exterior styling, but it could grow on me. I'd like the sport model without the roof rails (maybe they're removable).

    So at least I crossed the Focus off my list, but the "long-shot" Impreza moved up, so I still have a few hatch's in consideration.

    All in all, I'm not in all that much of a hurry, considering the E39 I'd give up, while somewhat redundant with the 335xi I just added, is still more engaging as a second car than any of these cars.

    2011 BMW 535xi - 2015 GTI - 2008 A3 - 2015 Sedona

  • boomchekboomchek Vancouver, BC, CanadaPosts: 5,215
    Congrats on the Jetta. I am impressed with some of VW's latest offerings, especially the Jetta and GTi.

    In Canada the GTi tops out at $40k for fully loaded 5 door with DSG and Nav. Even though it's pricey I think it's one of the (if not the) best hatchbacks/sports compacts you can get on the market right now. Even compared to an Audi A3, the GTi just seems like a much better and nicer car.

    Enjoy the car!

    2007 BMW 328i Sports Pkg

  • roadburnerroadburner Posts: 7,143
    Congrats! I love the 6 wagon- wish there was an MS6!

    Mine: 1995 318ti Club Sport 1975 2002A 2007 Mazdaspeed 3 1999 Wrangler 1996 Speed Triple Challenge Cup Replica Wife's: 2009 328i Son's: 2004 X3 2.5

  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    DI engines clatter a lot, no wonder they synthesize the noise. Still great tech.
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    The 2.5i Limited doesn't have roof rails. Told ya that back seat was surprisingly roomy. I liked the sedan I test drove.
  • steine13steine13 Posts: 2,449
    Congratulations on the 6/stick/wagon -- quite a find.

    I believe that's a V6 -- a friend was interested in these and said there's a nasty problem with the PCV system; something about a valve clogging up, or the oil pick-up clogging, and in the medium term, bye-bye engine.

    It sounded like one of those things were forewarned is forearmed, so you may wish to check one of the fan sites and see whether there's anything to it. I really like those as well. What keeps me from Mazda up here in MI is their tendency to rust -- aside from the fact that, like Nissans, they are fairly thin on the ground.

    One of these days I'll get my Outback, but I'm really not sold on the need for AWD.

    Good luck with the Six. FWD wagon FTW!

    Cheers -Mathias
  • breldbreld Posts: 1,569
    You were certainly right about that backseat. At 6' 3", I need all the seat travel possible in the driver's seat - in the Impreza, the back seat still had reasonable room for the kids in back with the driver's seat all the way back. In the Focus, the front seat was practically touching the back seat.

    My wife, who has a dislike for Subarus, actually likes it. What she really likes is the tangerine orange XV Crosstrek :) . Too bad the XV gets 3 MPG worse than the Impreza - how can that be? Just ride height?

    2011 BMW 535xi - 2015 GTI - 2008 A3 - 2015 Sedona

  • fezofezo Posts: 9,591
    Congrats! I love the 6 wagon- wish there was an MS6!

    You and me both!
  • oldfarmer50oldfarmer50 Posts: 6,903

    2009 PT Cruiser, 2008 Eclipse, 1995 Mark VIII, 1988 GMC Van

  • jayriderjayrider Posts: 3,542
    Breld, Your ship has come in. You can now be the proud owner of a Jetta Hybrid which from all accounts drives like a euro sedan. High MPG and around 30k. Not a hatch but it has a large trunk with fold down seats. That's the good news. The bad news ? It's a first generation Hybrid from VW --- what could possibly go wrong with all the extra technology ?
  • breldbreld Posts: 1,569
    edited February 2013
    I do like those - haven't driven one, but looked at one in the VW showroom recently. I believe, like the GLI, they put some of the nicer materials into the hybrid. And the "SE" model, with an MSRP of $27k, would be fine with me. They have a $25k model, but it's special order only.

    First gen hybrid from VW would be a great candidate for a lease, no?

    2011 BMW 535xi - 2015 GTI - 2008 A3 - 2015 Sedona

  • stickguystickguy Posts: 16,106
    I thought you were holding out for my BILs S2000?

    Reminds me, need to check with him to see what ever happened with that. I know I can't afford it!

    2015 Hyundai Sonata 2.4i Limited Tech (mine), 2013 Acura RDX (wife's) and 2007 Volvo S40 (daughters college car)

  • jayriderjayrider Posts: 3,542
    Based on the high resale of the TDI, it might make more sense to buy -- keep the miles low and sell it in 3 years.
  • fintailfintail Posts: 34,731
    And today begins a new chapter in my automotive history:


    Count me as punched...
  • sandman_6472sandman_6472 Coral Springs, FLPosts: 2,959
    I need new front brakes and was told that metallic pads are the way to go for less brake dust and better gripping capacity. Is this true? I plan to use my guy at Tires Plus as Midas always up sells me stuff i don't's frickin' annoying but, I think Midas has a lifetime guarantee which might be the better way to go. Can I request metallic pads over what these places usually use? I don't think they use metallic without a request but I have no idea. Please advise as the brakes arer making grinding noises on a hard stop and I drive on 95 daily now!

    T I A guys!

    The Sandman :) :sick: :shades:

    2015 Audi A3 (wife) / 2015 Golf TSI (me) / 2009 Nissan Versa SL Hatch (daughter #1) / 2008 Hyundai Accent GLS (daughter #2)

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