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What is "wrong" with these new subcompacts?



  • nippononlynippononly SF Bay AreaPosts: 12,669
    Thankfully we don't get the Toyota Vitz, (Vitz ??), and sub-compact sedans have gone to the great automotive scrapyard in the sky

    Yeah, luckily for you they have in the UK, but not in the old US of A. We get the fugly Versa sedan (a chopped Versa 5-door with a trunk glued on), the fuglier Aveo 4-door (even the Aveo 5-door is no prize in the beauty department), and the Yaris 4-door, which is the best-looking of this group, but that is truly faint praise (and the 3- and 5-doors are much better-looking IMO).

    Now Ford plans on continuing this tradition with the Fiesta, and I guess we should count our lucky stars that they have seen fit to also offer the 5-door. In much the same way that Toyota eventually started to sell the 5-door Yaris here, I hope Ford will come around and offer the Fiesta 3-door (in RS trim, Ford, C'MON!) a year or two after the initial launch.

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

  • The thought of an SVT/RS/ST Fiesta makes me giddy. Eh, okay maybe giddy is pushing it but I do like the thought of a "hot hatch" from a domestic manufacturer. Is there a sport model of the Fiat/Chrysler?

    I guess the other concern is that the Fiesta is more expensive in Europe so it has more features. I hope there is a balance between content and pricing here...the Contour started with a lot of equipment but got de-contented year after year as they tried to meet a pricepoint.
  • nippononlynippononly SF Bay AreaPosts: 12,669
    Yes, there is a sport 500, it is the Abarth, and Fiat has already promised that they WILL sell it stateside. THAT one ought to be a hoot. As would the Fiesta RS be, but in the case of the Ford there have been no promises of a North American sport version that I am aware of.

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

  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    If you like small sedans, just get a WRX.

    Subaru had too much overlap. Every car was small/medium sized. Every single model from the Impreza to the Tribeca had the exact same 16.9 gallon fuel capacity.

    That's just wrong. Something had to change.

    Outback sales were up 142% in November, so who are we to argue with that?

    C&D has a write-up on the new Suzuki Kizashi. It's about the size of the outgoing Legacy, and 0-60 in 7.2s with the 4 banger/6 speed manual combo. Too bad the AWD model only comes in a CVT... :(
  • Yes, there is a sport 500, it is the Abarth,

    And there is now the Abarth 500 Esseesse, (sounds as SS). Thiss little beassty hass some 180bhp, IIRC, but what iss desscribed as "firm" susspension - read rock ssssolid. Goes like thingy though, by all accountss. :shades:

    The "ordinary" Abarth 500 could well replace my Volvo S60 D5...........I'm getting tired of being grown up ;)
  • Fiat has released an Abarth Esseessee, whatever you called it alltorque. But that car is cool and I'd want mine to have a racing stripe on it. Maybe a white one with a blue racing stripe. And a manual 6-speed as well. This car is going to make some waves in da States.

    2008 Mitsubishi Lancer GTS

  • I'm having a bad week. The little Abarth "only" puts out 158bhp, not the 180 I stated, so apologies. Suppose 2 out of 3 numbers isn't too bad...........but not too good, either. :blush:

    Attached link takes you to an EVO magazine test, head-to-head Abarth vs Mini Cooper S. I've made my mind up but you must read and decide for yourself, (here's a clue - I've been sensible for too long) interested in your opinion. Enjoy.

    Abarth vs Mini"
  • qbrozenqbrozen Posts: 16,907
    Well, before I read the article, I can say that I am anxiously awaiting the Abarth.

    Although I'm afraid, since I've read its even smaller than a MINI, it ain't gonna cut it as a 2-kid hauler. :cry:

    '13 Stang GT; '86 Benz 300E; '98 Volvo S70; '12 Leaf; '08 Town&Country

  • nippononlynippononly SF Bay AreaPosts: 12,669
    Volkswagen Polo wins European Car of the Year award

    Volkswagen's new Polo--slated to enter the U.S. market within three years--narrowly beat the Toyota iQ to win the 2010 European Car of the Year award.

    The Polo scored 347 points against 337 for the iQ city car. The new Opel Astra was No. 3 with 221 points followed by the Skoda Yeti (158 points); the Mercedes-Benz E-Class (155 points); the Peugeot 3008 (144 points) and the Citroen C3 Picasso (113 points).

    VW CEO Martin Winterkorn said the new Polo, the fifth generation of the subcompact car, was designed to address customer expectations with even greater uncompromising standards.

    “We are naturally very pleased to see our efforts validated in the form of this award," Winterkorn said in a statement.

    Stefan Jacoby, CEO of Volkswagen Group of America, said VW could launch a Polo sedan in the U.S. in 2011 or 2012 followed by a hatchback with more space than the European model.

    If sold in North America, the Polo would be priced under the Jetta at between $13,000 and $15,000, Jacoby told Automotive News in an interview in April.

    Looks like a really nice little car, and for $15,000 I think it would do a lot of things better and for less money than the Honda Fit.

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

  • nippononlynippononly SF Bay AreaPosts: 12,669
    I've got to say, I am very excited about the impending release of the Fiesta. That thing looks fabulous, and it looks to out-Mini the Mini IMO. Not to mention that instead of having to drive 40 miles for warranty service (Mini), I have a Ford dealer in my hometown, not 5 minutes from my house. :-)

    And rated at 40mpg? Only problem here is that this looks to be yet another one of these new cars in which the manual actually makes LESS mpg than the automatic. :-(

    I will be picking up a new car to replace the Echo in the next year or two and this will be at the top of the list. But I WILL have to check out the Abarth too.

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

  • it's a well-written read, the one on the Abarth 500 and the Mini- Cooper.


    They make the Abarth 500 out to be the little annoying brother that's tagging along with big bro Mini-Cooper. Sounds like they found a lessely-made shifting experience and worse handling and road sense on the Abarth 500. But does this really sound like anything new to anyone who's anxiously awaiting the Fiat-sler Abarth 500 here in the States? Of course it doesn't.

    And it does nothing to stave off my un-Abarth-ed excitement for the Abarth 500. :shades:

    2008 Mitsubishi Lancer GTS

  • nippononlynippononly SF Bay AreaPosts: 12,669
    for Smart and the Toyota (Scion) iQ coming next year....the writer seems to be underwhelmed:

    2012 Chevrolet Spark, an AW Flash Drive

    This is General Motors' first-ever true mini car, the Korean-built Chevrolet Spark--all 143 inches and 1,900 pounds of it.

    In fact, the writer's opinion seems to mostly be summed up by this line:

    But what do you expect for $10,000?

    0-60 in more than 12 seconds, highway mpg rated 40+ for both manual and auto, due out in about two years. I kinda wish it would sell well for the sake of both GM and the future success of microcars in America in general, but I get a whiff of maximum cheaping out for people on fixed incomes here. And it will come from Korea, the source of GM's VERY underwhelming Aveo currently.

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

  • nippononlynippononly SF Bay AreaPosts: 12,669
    Well, now my enthusiasm for the Abarth has been tempered a bit:

    The Abarth shows its hand on the first pass, and I mentally move my bets to the Mini. Two faults manifest themselves instantly and both are fundamental: the steering and the chassis.

    At low speeds the grip and firm ride gave me confidence, but now I’m travelling faster, feedback and accuracy matter and the electric power steering fails dismally. No more than a distant hint of information trickles through the squeezable, flat-bottomed rim; an electric ‘tzzzz’ is the only hint that your inputs are having some bearing on wheel angle. It’s such a shame given the grip and tenacity the front end exhibits.

    One of the most important aspects of any car I buy for fun is the quality of the steering, something that ALL cars with electric steering are getting wrong nowadays. It appears that Abarth has been worsened by the same bugaboo. :-(

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

  • snakeweaselsnakeweasel a Certified Edmunds Poster.Posts: 11,568
    I kinda wish it would sell well for the sake of both GM and the future success of microcars in America in general

    My guess is that once the economy picks up gas prices will head north again and $4-5+ a gallon gas will make micro cars more popular.

    There are three types of people in this world. Those who are good at math and those who are not.

  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    Where are Polos built? The Euro is too strong against the dollar.
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    I forget where I saw this but they said eventually we'd see an Ecoboost Fiesta.

    NOW you're talking. Ecoboosts runs on 87 octane, too.
  • nippononlynippononly SF Bay AreaPosts: 12,669
    They already said they would build Polos in Mexico if they decided to sell them here. Not ideal, I know. Mexican-built VWs have a very poor history in terms of reliability.

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

  • texasestexases Posts: 5,424
    Well, most VWs have that poor reputation right now...aren't Touaregs built in Germany? They have a terrible record. :sick:
  • Nope those are built in Slovakia alongside their Porsche twin the Cayenne.
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