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Midsize Sedans Comparison Thread

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Comments

  • captain2captain2 Posts: 3,971
    Do you really honestly believe Ford just sits back after developing an engine and does nothing?? C'mon folks.
    Not because they want to - but product development will always be proportional to a mfgrs. profit margins - something that has in non-existent in 'Detroit' for a number of years now.
    The DT 3.0 problems are not just that you can add 20hp by changing some intake valve timing but it is how bad it feels and sounds doing it. Same thing can be said for the GM 3.8 another reliable engine that just simply doesn't measure up in refinement. Even Hyundai's 3.3 and 3.8 are much better efforts and the 'Japanese' V6s and 4s? - well about the only thing have have in common with Ford/GM/DC efforts is the no. of sparkplugs.
    That said, the new DT 3.5 is apparently much much better - if only Ford had had the money to put that engine in the Fusion/500 2 years ago - both models are well designed cars with inferior drivetrains...
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,749
    Sure, you can have regular maintenance done anyplace. But because of the great service I got at the Dodge dealership (including free rides home), and their reasonable prices for routine service, I liked going there.

    And btw, you don't have to go to a dealer for breakdowns, as long as you have receipts for the work.
  • kdshapirokdshapiro Posts: 5,751
    Saw the Aura, nice car, nice writeups from the rags. A Saturn/GM would never make it to my garage. A Ford would never make it to my garage again. In this segment my choice would be an Accord. I'll take my chances with one, sporty or not, reliable or not.
  • andres3andres3 CAPosts: 5,343
    And btw, you don't have to go to a dealer for breakdowns, as long as you have receipts for the work.

    Yeah, good luck going through the mountain of paperwork you'd have to fill out, submit, and mail or turn in. And oh yeah, by the way... the check should arrive 12 weeks later.

    Good grief!
  • comp386comp386 Posts: 56
    I really wouldn't call the engines inferior. Again, Edmunds picked the Mazda 6 as its editors choice. Now I'm sure there were factors other than just the engine, but it really can't be bad if they picked it. I don't want Ford to just be good, I want them to knock the competition out of the water and that requires the refinement of the Cyclone. I think there will be a replacement coming soon though. Mazda is updating its 6 next year and I wouldn't be surprised if it sported a shiny new cyclone. :D
  • zzzoom6zzzoom6 Posts: 425
    The DT 3.0 problems are not just that you can add 20hp by changing some intake valve timing but it is how bad it feels and sounds doing it.

    actually the 3.0 is pretty smooth with a nice long flat torque curve. and at full throttle, it has a nice growl to it; not as nice as a v-8, but in a much higher class than the v-6 that's in the impala for example. is it as good as the sonata, accord, altima, or camry? no, but it is nowhere near "bad".

    it's even been an engine that some exotic car companies have used to power their cars like the Noble M12. Granted, this engine had a turbo put on it, but this suggests that the 3.0 has a good deal of strength along with many desireable characteristics.

    the duratec 3.o is a smooth and sweet engine that loves to rev and even with a bit of a power defeceit compared to it's peers, the mazda 6 can still hit 60 in 6.5 seconds (mtx). the stock sound in the mazda 6 is decently aggressive; modify the airbox or add a cold air intake and it will have a nice hearty rumble to it when accelerating hard. Or drive it mellow and you'll hardly hear it at all.
  • mfletou1mfletou1 Posts: 508
    Added a 2007 Toyota Camry Hybrid to their Long Term Fleet.

    http://www.motortrend.com/roadtests/oneyear/112_0610_2007_toyota_camry_hybrid/

    I got a kick out of their initial read on it:

    Perhaps even more impressive is the Hybrid's acceleration: 0-to-60 mph in 7.7 seconds and the quarter mile in 15.9 at 89.1 mph, both of which are quicker than those of the Buick Lucerne CXL and Mercury Montego Premier AWD we tested in June. We should also note that the Camry Hybrid serves up around 10 mpg more than the Buick and Mercury. As technical editor Kim Reynolds puts it, "The Camry Hybrid makes you ask how other carmakers can defend their comparative inefficiency."

    Pretty strong words. Of course, they note that its "Lexus-like quiet" and "pleasurable to drive." Wait till they actually break it in. My first 3000 miles I average 34.6 mpg. My last tank on the same driving (older colder temps) was 36.1. 5000-7600 miles (where I am now) have all been on 36, no matter what I do to it.

    Is it cheap? No. Is it worth every penny? You better believe it.

    And value wise, it depends on the driver. I'm a very high mileage driver now, so an extra 14 mpg a tank for me (compared to my last car) adds up big time. And I got the big $2600 tax credit. So for me, a good value.

    But no matter what else you think, a family sedan that runs a 7.7 0-60 and gets 35+ mpg in real world (EPA 40/38) is pretty damn impressive.

    Oh, and not that these things are decided in such a short period of time, but 7600 miles and not so much as a solitary rattle. High volume Northern VA dealer where I bring it for normal service tells me they haven't had a single one come in for anything other than oil changes and tire rotations yet. Ironically, the highest tech Camry may be the most trouble free so far---CVT is flawless, and powertrain assisted by battery is quick and punchy from the get go.
  • lweisslweiss Posts: 342
    No, no Saturns for me, they have the image of "chick cars". And no manly big SUV's either, that is too much the other way. And even my Volvo seems like a car designed for women (and I think the demographics of Volvo buyers match that, I read that somewhere a couple of years ago). And at least around here, Honda Civic/Accord and Toyota Camry/Corollas are the basic chick cars also. Maybe that's why I am heading for a Mazda6/Nissan Altima !!!

    PS. Don't look for logic from me on this, purely emotion and image haha.
  • kdshapirokdshapiro Posts: 5,751
    For me, it's not about the image, it's about the drive and practicality.

    PS In my opinion, Saturns do *not* have the image you allude to. The Aura is certainly a "manly car". I wouldn't buy one though.

    The Mazda6 is definitely ok and no Nissans for me, to many quality problems and I can't get past the looks of the entire model lineup. Normally looks are secondary to me but there has to be some draw to the styling. There is not one Nissan I can honestly say I like the styling of.
  • scape2scape2 Posts: 4,119
    The Duratec 3.0 is really no slouch. I spoke with a Tech from a Ford Dealership. This guy had 25 years with Ford. He claimed the Fusion/Milan are "tuned" to have a growling type EXHAUST sound to them. My 3.0 is very smooth. At stop lights I can't even tell its running. Once again, percepetion and the media constantly bashing into peoples heads that anything from Ford/GM is simply inferior. :sick:
  • venus537venus537 Posts: 1,443
    "Once again, percepetion and the media constantly bashing into peoples heads that anything from Ford/GM is simply inferior."

    It's a good thing we have you to point out the real deal. I know it's an uphill battle to turn around that sheep herd mentality that's out there.
  • elroy5elroy5 Posts: 3,741
    He claimed the Fusion/Milan are "tuned" to have a growling type EXHAUST sound to them.

    When the edmunds reviewer commented on the loud engine noise heard inside the V6 Fusion, he was talking about the unpleasant "thrashing" sounds coming from under the hood, not the exhaust. But of course Media=bias so I guess it's all "perception", right?
  • scape2scape2 Posts: 4,119
    Thats funny, I don't hear thrashing... I guess once again ones opinion.. ;)
  • elroy5elroy5 Posts: 3,741
    Thats funny, I don't hear thrashing... I guess once again ones opinion..

    What is also funny is, I knew you wouldn't hear it.
  • explorerx4explorerx4 Central CTPosts: 9,836
    the basic duratec v engine design is available in several high end variations.
  • explorerx4explorerx4 Central CTPosts: 9,836
    we have an escape with a 3.0. it does growl some when you rev it up. to me, it isn't a bad sound. of course, i like the sound of a 5.0, too.
  • oldcemoldcem Posts: 309
    I've got the 229 HP variant of the Duratec in my car. Its high compression, has VVT, and a multi-level induction system. Love the fat torque curve it has. Its smooth as silk, and, the exhaust note at 3 grand and above is quite nice. Love the way it performs in my heavy AWD sedan.

    Regards:
    Oldengineer
  • I've got the 229 HP variant of the Duratec in my car. Its high compression, has VVT, and a multi-level induction system. Love the fat torque curve it has. Its smooth as silk, and, the exhaust note at 3 grand and above is quite nice. Love the way it performs in my heavy AWD sedan.

    Regards:
    Oldenginee


    I always thought the baby duratec in the Contour sounded cool too. I miss that car. :cry:
  • captain2captain2 Posts: 3,971
    about 18 months ago - and looking for a 4 dr sedan the 2 'Detroit' models that I interviewed - the 500 (DT and 6 speed) and the 300 (3.5 V6) vs. a no. of 'Japanese' models. The 500 surprised the heck out of me - a well designed 'space ship', fit and finish that rivaled the 'imports', with good egronomics. It would have been a few grand cheaper than the others, and I might have made into the sales mgr's office except for one thing - I turned the key and actually drove it. 'Thrashy' with a tranny that didn't seem to know what gear to be the best summation - ended up walking away wondering why Ford would put such an 'antiquated' drivetrain in such a good car. Had Ford been able to put a better engine in both the 500/Fusion would suggest to you that there is a strong possibility that they would be losing as much money as they are today, hence the mistake on Ford's part
    For those of you that are 'Detroit' fans, I challenge you to name any 'U.S.' smaller displacement engine 4 or V6 that has represented anything remarkable or innovative in any way? And I think the answer to that question might just be that 11 year old DT, that really wasn't remarkable at the time - just competitive.
  • louisweilouiswei Posts: 3,717
    The US Accord is indeed selling in other countries with the same "Accord" badge. For what I know, Honda is selling the US Accord (and only US Accord) in countries like China and Taiwan.

    The US Accord variant, "Inspire", only exists in Honda's home market - Japan. The model that wears the "Accord" badge in Japan is the same as the Accord Euro.

    Many other countries like Australia and Maylasia has 2 different kinds of Accord - Accord and Accord Euro. In Europe, the only Accord is the Euro model which is essentially the same as the Acura TSX.

    US Accord:
    image

    Honda Inspire:
    image

    Accord Euro:
    image

    Acura TSX:
    image

    As for Toyota Camry I believe there is only one model, which is the same one as we are getting here in the US. However, The Camry that's sold in Asia has a different front fascial and rear end.

    US Camry:
    image
    image

    Asian Camry:
    image
    image
  • bobadbobad Posts: 1,587
    What is also funny is, I knew you wouldn't hear it.

    It was 100% predictable that you would hear it. :)
  • kdhspyderkdhspyder Posts: 7,160
    But no matter what else you think, a family sedan that runs a 7.7 0-60 and gets 35+ mpg in real world (EPA 40/38) is pretty damn impressive.

    This is what might revolutionize the auto industry. True V6 performance but the fuel economy of a Corolla/Civic/Accent/Sentra.

    The point about the CVT us a key one as well. Other than a coolant change at about 60,000 miles it requires no maintenance whatsoever. AFAIK there has not been a single reported instance of any difficulties in this CVT in the Prius', HH's/400h's or TCH's. It has been flawless throughout it's first 3 years of service.
  • zzzoom6zzzoom6 Posts: 425
    keep in mind the ford 500 weighs 500 more pounds than the mazda6...I'm not surprised that that engine was a bit more strained hauling around that kind of heft: in fact that should be expected. but in a lighter car, especially with the duratec with vvt, it does quite nicely.

    when I'm puttering around town and keeping rpm's below 3k, it is very quiet. my uncle, who owns a lexus 430, sounded surprised at how quiet it was when I drove him home the other day. this is one characteristic that he knows I don't really care about since I always have told him that I was more interested in a "fun" car than something bland. when we went for an aggressive drive through some twisty roads, we talked about many things about the car, but quiet was never a subject that we ever brought up. but when I decide to drive it smooth and mellow, that engine/car does quite well.

    but when I want to punch it or need to pass someone, acceleration is very linear because of the long flat torque curve. the great thing is that the engine is very strong and pulls hard without being like an on/off switch that leads to torque steer when you don't want it unlike the last generation altima. when vvt surges the car forward at around 5800 rpm, you can definitely hear the engine get a lot louder until it hits it's 6500 rpm redline. it's not like a scream that you'll find in a s2000's 8k redline, but it's nothing like what you hear at 3k. but...duh. when you drive the car at 6k rpm or above, smoothness is not a charcteristic you are going for...it's about aggression, stimulation and speed.

    at least in the mazda6, the duratec does just fine and helps the 6 achieve it's goals: to provide an engaging experience when you want it, and to not be noticed when driving in day to day traffic. and it's not just the duratec that makes the 6 remarkable; it's the best in class brakes, the best in class handling, the accurate and tight steering, comfort for the driver and passengers, body styles that let buyers choose the level of practicality they need, and a great engine.
  • mz6greyghostmz6greyghost Posts: 1,230
    at least in the mazda6, the duratec does just fine and helps the 6 achieve it's goals: to provide an engaging experience when you want it, and to not be noticed when driving in day to day traffic. and it's not just the duratec that makes the 6 remarkable; it's the best in class brakes, the best in class handling, the accurate and tight steering, comfort for the driver and passengers, body styles that let buyers choose the level of practicality they need, and a great engine.

    Couldn't have said it better myself! :)
  • qbrozenqbrozen Posts: 17,536
    There is not one Nissan I can honestly say I like the styling of.

    Of course its completely subjective, but I think the 350Z is one of the best looking cars on the road. It draws my attention more than vehicles costing several times more.

    '13 Stang GT; '15 Fit; '98 Volvo S70; '14 Town&Country

  • qbrozenqbrozen Posts: 17,536
    at least in the mazda6, the duratec does just fine and helps the 6 achieve it's goals: to provide an engaging experience when you want it, and to not be noticed when driving in day to day traffic. and it's not just the duratec that makes the 6 remarkable; it's the best in class brakes, the best in class handling, the accurate and tight steering, comfort for the driver and passengers, body styles that let buyers choose the level of practicality they need, and a great engine.

    Well, to each his own. I've been a Mazda fan for almost 30 years, and I really wanted to like the Mazda6 enough to get one, but I made the "mistake" of driving it back-to-back with an Accord. There is simply no comparison. Its not that the mazda is necessarily bad for what it is, I think its more to the point that the Accord is just that good. I was comparing both of these vehicles against a bunch of used luxury cars (A6, S60, S80). The Accord compared favorably, while the Mazda felt exactly like what it is, a midsize sedan on a budget.

    '13 Stang GT; '15 Fit; '98 Volvo S70; '14 Town&Country

  • captain2captain2 Posts: 3,971
    imagine what the car would be with an extra 40 or 50 horsepower of smooth 'Japanese' V6. While Mazda has always had leanings to the sporty 'go cart' side of the handling/ride tradeoff, their cars have suffered for years in the fact that the V6s were Ford engines - all the way back to the Probe/MX5 in the 80s. The Mazdaspeed6 will, of course, easily keep up with Altima, Accord, Camry V6s of this group - at least until that 'blown' engine blows. The 215hp V6 not a prayer.
  • kdshapirokdshapiro Posts: 5,751
    There must be two models of Ford 500. I needed a rented car and got a 500. I didn't like much about the car. I felt, the engine had to work very hard and was noisy with not much power.
  • mz6greyghostmz6greyghost Posts: 1,230
    imagine what the car would be with an extra 40 or 50 horsepower of smooth 'Japanese' V6.

    Yeah, it's called "torque steer". Ask a late-model Altima 3.5SE owner about it.

    ...their cars have suffered for years in the fact that the V6s were Ford engines - all the way back to the Probe/MX5 in the 80s.

    IMO, The Duratec is a very smooth, flexible, durable engine. It has been for years, and many current Mazda6 owners are former Probe/Contour/MX-5 owners that enjoyed the Duratec V6 so much that they bought another one. I don't think they've "suffered" at all.

    The 215hp V6 not a prayer.

    In 2003, when the Mazda6 was first introduced, the 220HP V6 has right in the thick of things in terms of HP and torque. Granted, the competitors have gone bigger and better since then, but the Mazda6 is due for an overhaul for '08, with the new Duratec 3.5L V6 rumored as an option. :)
  • captain2captain2 Posts: 3,971
    as an owner of an 03 Altima 3.5, yep it sure does have more than it's share of TS, as Nissans generally have for years. And you know what, the car will leave any Mazda V6 in its dust. In terms of proven, reliable engines that are not 'meat grinders' the Nissan VQ has no peers.
    Honda and Toyota, incidentally, have taken a more aggressive approach to limiting TS through suspension geometries and electronic transmission tuning. But all cars with even decent HP to a FWD design will have the 'problem', even the Mazda V6 maybe just not as apparent.
This discussion has been closed.