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What is "wrong" with these new subcompacts?

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  • hpmctorquehpmctorque Posts: 4,209
    Ready for a change is a valid reason to, well, trade the old for the new. A Fit would represent a change, but a Yaris, not so much. However, I read that Toyota will update the Yaris for 2012 (I believe). It'll be more than just a freshening, but will retain the current platform.
  • iluvmysephia1iluvmysephia1 Posts: 5,707
    edited December 2010
    for the even lower price of only $16,400 or as you say, $16,000 with a bit of haggling, the manual trannied Mazda 2 in this shade of green might just get the nod over the 2011 Ford Fiesta.

    image
    The new "smiley-faced" Mazda small car look looks much
    better on their new 2 as opposed to their new 3 IMHO


    If I were to take the silly plunge, that is. The Mazda 2 and Ford Fiesta test drives would be a ball. I am still working on paying off the '08 Lancer GTS and I love the car. Humm....maybe think about 2 cars? :confuse:

    2011 Kia Soul Sport 5-speed

  • plektoplekto Posts: 3,738
    edited December 2010
    What struck me with driving the Mazda 2 was that it simply needed another 15-20HP. The Buick Regal also has this issue. Both are great vehicles but they are slow to respond and you ask yourself... WHY? 100HP is just... My Volvo 240 weighed the same amount as the 2 and had 20 more HP. And it felt... SLOW.

    But... 16K... that's pricey. You say "want sporty" and "want cheap", well, that's something a tiny bit larger that has a standard 160hp or so engine in it. A compact car.

    Of course, the 2012 Civic will change everything. We're finally getting the Euro-Spec Civic.
    http://www.honda.co.uk/cars/civic3door/#gallery
    Check out the 5th picture.

    Honda's U.S. page:
    http://automobiles.honda.com/2012-civic/
    It's an "artist concept", obviously, of the exact same generation Civic as they sell in the U.K. now. Honda wouldn't just toss its entire tooling and designs - so it'll probably be nearly identical to the Euro version. And the reviews in Europe have been stellar.

    Spring 2012. It's Honda finally taking the game seriously, and if they by some miracle offer the TDI version (45mpg combined), VW is done for.
  • crkyolfrtcrkyolfrt Posts: 2,345
    Says compression ratio was 10.5 for the diesel. 10.5 what? Surely that isn't psi..

    I hope i live long enough that we are offered as many diesel options here in NA as they have in Europe. As NA's, are we smart enough to demand diesel options? Rhetorical, cuz the ratio is so few it doesn't make a scale....unfortunately.

    I wonder if Honda will have finally addressed interior noise? When I saw the 66.2 db level of the Fiesta, compared to the competition, I could forgive a lot of other weaknesses as long as the seat wasn't one of them.

    Maybe I too should wait. I had been considering a TDI, but they have become so complicated, with cat preburners or whatever it's called, and so many other measures to meet our ridiculous emission restrictions. Once out of wty, i would be out of my element to work on it. Of course Honda's diesel would be no simpler here either. But the car might be less problematic than the Vdub.
  • plektoplekto Posts: 3,738
    True, but any car these days isn't DIY friendly. The advantage is that Honda's engine was designed (quote) "By a man who hates diesels". He went out of his way to make it operate as much like a gasoline engine and with the idea of "*I* don't want to have to work on fixing it" in mind.

    It's really reliable and is also almost 2 seconds faster than the base gas powered Civic's 0-60 times.(nearly 200lb-ft torque is huge once the turbo gets going)

    But even the normal gas powered Civic hatchback is awesome looking. The interior is amazing and it really is what we've been wanting - an economy car that's also somewhat luxurious.

    Also,
    http://www.seatcoversunlimited.com/Genuine-Sheepskin-p-16157.html
    Click on image 9. The simple way to make crummy economy seats feel like decent ones is to get covers like this.(the sides aren't there because of the side airbags) $220 and it gets rid of the seat-hate and back pain, guaranteed.
  • nippononlynippononly SF Bay AreaPosts: 12,693
    What struck me with driving the Mazda 2 was that it simply needed another 15-20HP.

    That's why you get the manual. ;-)
    Or were you already driving the manual? I didn't find it to be wanting for power, provided you were willing to rev it when you wanted to go fast. These little cars are all that way, designed that way on purpose so that in normal driving you can get really good gas mileage.

    Spring 2012. It's Honda finally taking the game seriously
    I believe they have just made it official that the next-gen Civic will be available in Spring 2011 as a 2012 model. Perhaps that is the confusion here, that it will be a 2012? It definitely isn't still 15 months away, more like 5.

    And yes it will be nice to see Honda take the compact class as seriously as it takes the subcompact class with the Fit, although to be fair the current Civic was at least tied for tops (with the Mazda3) in the compact class when it came out in 2005.

    2013 Civic SI, 2009 Outback Sport 5-spd (stick)

  • crkyolfrtcrkyolfrt Posts: 2,345
    I think I saw 251 ft lbs, (heehee) at 2000 rpm (which is a fair bit higher than TDI's 1650 or whatever it is...typical Honda engine with revs tho) which is about right for a 2.2 turbo'd and intercooled.

    The sheepskin is warm, but it doesn't make a seat (bottom especially) bigger or longer in dimension. In fact, their very thickness uses up even more seat real estate. I find that most seat bottoms are shorter in the past decade than they used to be. While car shopping and visiting with other shoppers, a very common complaint from just random shoppers is that the seat bottoms don't support thighs well enough, and the other beef you often hear, is that with manual adjusters, if you adjust height, you also adjust tilt...like it or not, and vice versa. I'm guessing that is why as many people opt for a pwr seat which is often pkg'd with sunroofs and other cr&p.
    Let's face it, in a car - behind the wheel, is there even one other single component in the entire car that has more bearing on the driver than the seat?
  • isellhondasisellhondas Issaquah WashingtonPosts: 17,762
    The current Civic came out in 2006 and it's getting pretty long in the tooth.

    It'll be interesting to see the new model that will compete in a brutal marketplave.
  • crkyolfrtcrkyolfrt Posts: 2,345
    I didn't know you had bought a 2nd CRV. Only 500 miles eh? That is one new car. So you are finding it quieter than the 03? I drove the CRV before I bought my 05. That was fall of 08 so i guess it was an 09. Two things I found right away that I ruled the car out. First was the discovery that they dropped the manual, but i was (and still am) open to an auto if it works really well. REALLY well, and I do feel that more speeds helps in that department. But in the demo CRV I drove it had this very peculiar 'shudder' throughout the entire chassis when going over even small bumps. It was so noticeable to me that if you didn't know better, you would swear it had 1/3 the number of spot welds in the chassis that it should have had. To this day I would love to drive another one to see if they all do that. I also was not impressed with the 5 sp auto. It seemed to hold onto gears a bit too long in town, which I felt wasted gas.
    And the particular demo I drove had a driveline imbalance that felt like a severely out of balance wheel. I mentioned to them when I got back and got a look (from the saleswoman) like I simply had to have been mistaken. The thing that concerned me in that regard tho, was a year earlier my neice and her husband finally retired their old 5 sp Altima and bought a new 5 sp Accord. Well that car also had a driveline imbalance that had been to three dif dealers and two tire speciality shops all in an effort to find out what the imbalance was. It wasn't until they swapped out all four rims and tires with dif ones that they searched deeper than wheels and tires. That swap still had the imbalance. Apparently it was something in the transmission or somewhere (I never did quite follow where she said they found the problem) but both her and her husband still say it is way better but just not smooth like their 200000 mi Altima was.

    After learning about that, and then coincidently a year later I drive that CRV demo (that still had plastic on the seats) with a rather severe imbalance, it sure cinched it for me, that I would never order car. I drive the very car I am going to buy and if it has an ailment like that, there is no way that the dealer will say "oh that's just a wheel out of balance, we can fix that...so do we have a deal?" I'll wait till they find the problem, then we have a deal.
    The fact that they were both Hondas I feel is nothing more than a coincidence btw.
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    Early sketches of the new Civic are out, and it looks more aggressive, but mostly evolutionary.

    I think the Elantra is going to shake up this segment. 40mpg in any model plus your pick of 6 speeds.
  • isellhondasisellhondas Issaquah WashingtonPosts: 17,762
    You may be right about the Elantra. With each passing year the Korean Stigma may fade away.

    Not my cup of tea!
  • isellhondasisellhondas Issaquah WashingtonPosts: 17,762
    edited December 2010
    Not sure what you mean by "imbalance"?

    After riding in and driving literally, thousands of new Hondas I can honestly say I never felt anything like that.

    If you drove a new Honda with plastic on the seats, I'm guessing it may not have had it's Pre Delivery Inspection. If that was the case, the tires would have been severly overinflated and it would have bounced like a basketball.

    Sometimes I would have customers "hear" or "feel" something that I couldn't detect or that I knew was just normal.

    People would take their hands off the steering wheel somethimes and whan the car would slowly drift to the right (normal) they would tell me..IT PULLS TO THE RIGHT!

    People would open the hoods on used cars with the engines running and tell me it had a "knock" when there was no abnormal noise.

    Sometimes these comments were just fluff reasons to not buy a car or a reason to get the price down.
  • plektoplekto Posts: 3,738
    edited December 2010
    Yes, it was with a manual. And 100hp at 2500lbs or so is pokey. 120HP is adequate. Just barely.

    And the Civic is a only a few months away. I think the recent 2 star rating on the crash tests finally lit a fire under their posterior. The IIHS made the 2011 tests MUCH harder and more realistic, and a lot of small vehicles with 4 or 5 star ratings simply failed outright. As you'd kind of expect, since the chances of a Yaris getting into an accident with another Yaris is pretty remote. It's why the test should be even harder and against a 3600-3800lb "standard size and weight" vehicle. Or an approximation of one.

    But, yeah, if you're not dying for a replacement right now, I'd wait until the Honda comes out before making a decision.

    And, yes, the TDI market is huge in the U.S.precisely because there's only VW/Audi (breaks a lot) an Mercedes (costs a lot). What we need is cheap and reliable and doesn't look or handle like a toad. Honda could sell an awful lot of them just because so many people are waiting for a car like this before making the leap to diesel.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CFDA9so_IeI
    I want one. Now. :P
  • crkyolfrtcrkyolfrt Posts: 2,345
    It wasn't subtle. It was as if there was a big clump of mud or ice stuck to the wheel. Surely you have driven a car whose wheels were out of balance? It was like that.

    I admit I am sensitive to feel in a vehicle, be it on a bike, a car or even a big truck. Most racers have this ability more than your average driver. I can feel driveline issues going bad before they fail. Like a U joint for example. I don't need it to be clanking around (or even close to that) before realizing there is a major problem going to happen if it is ignored. A U joint starts off sometimes with just a squeak, and will eventually transform to a a bit of wiggle or warple in the driveline...a very very subtle flutter. If you have ever driven a Jeep that someone has raised up and gone a bit too high for U joint angles that don't feel fluid anymore, you would know what i mean. Or not, not everyone feels things till they break.

    But your example of the "it pulls to the right' would have bugged me too. You likely got that more since more vehicles became FWD also. Trying to explain torque-steer to someone like that...well.. I think a person would have to learn to tone that out or they would drive you crazy.
  • oregonboyoregonboy Posts: 1,653
    Cars drift to the right due to the crown of the road.... nothing to do with torque steer. ;)
  • crkyolfrtcrkyolfrt Posts: 2,345
    I know that thanks, but my point was that even if there was no crown, torque-steer could still be evident depending on how aggressive they accelerate.

    And i think isell's point was he felt like a broken record trying to explain this to people who should already know it but use any old thing to degrade the car so they can skinny their deal.
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    With each passing year the Korean Stigma may fade away

    I think it already has.

    They went from customers leaving the brands in droves, to 58 and 56% loyalty rates for Hyundai and Kia, respectively. Hyundai missed a tie with Honda by just 1%.
  • isellhondasisellhondas Issaquah WashingtonPosts: 17,762
    Korean cars still bomb at the auctions and on our used lot, no matter how nice they were, they were very difficult to sell even when they could be bought for a substancial savings over a used Honda or Toyota.

    I will admit that they have made tremendous strides. At the recent Auto Show I have to say, some of their models were pretty impressive.

    I still wouldn't want one when there are better (my opinion) choices for about the same money.
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    Perhaps, but those are a few years old, right?

    I'm sure when the new Sonata (or Elantra) hit the auctions the values will rise just as quickly as loyalty did.
  • isellhondasisellhondas Issaquah WashingtonPosts: 17,762
    edited December 2010
    Well, perhaps. I suppose only time will tell.

    I do know people have short memories.

    I just have a bad taste in my mouth for Korean cars. I vividly remember thier initial offerings. I also remember when Daewoo came to town with crappy troublesome cars and tried to elbow themselves into an already overcrowded marketplace.

    Having said all of this, I would still buy a Hyundai before I would buy anything Volkswagen.
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    I think that generally the public's perception lags about 5 years behind reality. So you're right...it could still take a while.

    At least there was gradual improvement even before the current generation. They were smart - the warranty made people look, then the cars improved.
  • isellhondasisellhondas Issaquah WashingtonPosts: 17,762
    They were more or less forced into going to that 100K powertrain warranty and they hung their hopes on it.

    It's not as good as it sounds since it covers the POWERTRAIN and not the other stuff that breaks more often. Most powertrains last well over 100K.

    I'm sure they added a few hundred to the price of the cars when they added the longer warranty.

    It did work. There are a lot of what we used to call "warranty freaks" who really focus on that. I always thought Honda should do the same thing since the risks wouldn't be that great.
  • qbrozenqbrozen Posts: 17,462
    Says compression ratio was 10.5 for the diesel. 10.5 what? Surely that isn't psi..

    Compression ratio is just that... a ratio. So 10.5 means 10.5:1. In other words, it can compress 10.5 cubic inches down to 1 cubic inch.

    However, I believe that may be a typo in the case of the diesel. That's more of a petrol compression ratio. Diesels tend to be more in the 18+ range.

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

  • crkyolfrtcrkyolfrt Posts: 2,345
    Right, pardon my brain burp...that was the point i was trying to make. Thanks for figuring it out.
    Ya... so definitely a typo. I just wondered that if it wasn't what type of new tech are have they discovered with their new oil burner.
  • qbrozenqbrozen Posts: 17,462
    yeah, I don't know. I think such a low compression ratio would not work with glow plugs, though. (do they still use those anyway??)
    So maybe some sort of different injection system that uses less fuel, "atomizes" it better, and a higher heat ignition source.(????) All complete guesses on my part. I can't say I'm a diesel expert by any stretch of the imagination. I'll probably ask Dad at Xmas, though, as it has my curiosity sparked.

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

  • crkyolfrtcrkyolfrt Posts: 2,345
    I think they still use them, AAMOF i think i read recently somewhere that they had a recall on some, that used a ceramic tip that could break off, and of course that is disastrous, as it goes into the CC.

    There sure would have to be other changes made in order to get the dsl to fire, cuz 10.5 isn't even very high by gas standards really. And thru a lower CR, I would think there would be less output also, which would give less FE. And cold starting would be made even more complicated. I think it must be a typo.

    I really do admit, I love the idea of a Honda dsl on these shores. Interesting about the guy behind it, not liking dsl engines... quite the blasphemes admission, lol
  • Then, one person's loss is another one's gain. I have long-term and objective experience with a number of Honda autos, and Hyundai. Frankly, and surprising even to me initially, the Hyundai's have been more reliable.

    All of this means that used car buyers can get a great deal on a used Hyundai rather than paying for the market's perception of quality with Honda or Toyota.
  • isellhondasisellhondas Issaquah WashingtonPosts: 17,762
    Being more reliable than a Honda is surprising to me too.

    And you are correct. Used Hyundais can be an excellent buy given the steep depreciation curve. I would try to steer my customers toward them for that very reason but I typically wasn't successful.

    People just didn't want them.
  • snakeweaselsnakeweasel a Certified Edmunds Poster.Posts: 11,764
    I will agree with you, we have taken two Hyundais (an Elantra and an Accent) to over 175K miles each. Both cars have been more reliable than any other car I have had. I would buy one again overmost other cars.

    The sign said "No shoes, no shirt, no service", it didn't say anything about no pants.

  • iluvmysephia1iluvmysephia1 Posts: 5,707
    edited December 2010
    I think it already has.

    They went from customers leaving the brands in droves, to 58 and 56% loyalty rates for Hyundai and Kia, respectively. Hyundai missed a tie with Honda by just 1%.


    And Hyundai and Kia have been up "there" for several years now. Many new Kia's have won customer appreciation awards. I spose the American public's perception is slow, still, but anyone who has a keen interest in new motorcars has picked up on the Korean upsurge for years now. At least 3 years of great successs has been realized by Hyundai and Kia by 2010. The cars are reliable, I racked up 80,000 miles on my '99 Kia Sephia (a few warranty repairs and one recall were necessary) and about 130,000 on my 2001 Kia Sportage 4X4 (a few Warranty repairs were necessary) and I would not hesitate to buy another Kia.

    2011 Kia Soul Sport 5-speed

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