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Midsize Sedans 2.0

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Comments

  • m6userm6user Posts: 2,966
    I think there are plenty of people that buy what they believe to be is a "Made in America" vehicle. They may not be entirely correct in their selection but the intent is there.
  • stephen987stephen987 Posts: 1,994
    Most cars are not made entirely in one place. There are a few exceptions--I think the Prius really is 100% Japanese content. But for decades now, most "Japanese" cars have included electrical components made in Malaysia or Thailand, US cars have incorporated components made in Canada or Mexico, German cars have included Hungarian electronics, etc.

    That doesn't even take into account the final assembly point: in addition to the US-made Hondas, Hyundais, Mazdas, Nissans, & Toyotas, and the Mexican-built VWs, Chryslers & Fords, the US market also has received Volvos made in Belgium, Porsches made in Finland, BMWs made in South Africa, and I'm sure I am leaving out a few.

    There is a local content label on new cars. If you want to "buy American," or as American as possible, use it. But I know a few people who, when shopping for a Honda, will parse the VIN so as to be sure they get "one of the Japanese ones" because they think they're somehow better than the ones made in Ohio or Ontario.
  • elroy5elroy5 Posts: 3,741
    From my experience, a car assembled over here is not better or worse then the same product assembled in Japan. I'm sure most of you will disagree....

    I've heard many people say the Hondas from Japan are better built than the ones made here. I think you can get a lemon from either country. When I was shopping for a truck at the Toyota dealer, the salesman said "This truck was assembled in Japan" like that meant it was flawless. Hogwash! It was far from flawless. Both of my Accords were assembled in Ohio, and I'd say the Marysville people did a very good job.

    I've also heard about the higher-ups in these plants being Japanese. So, do these Japanese workers fly back to Japan each night? I don't think so. They live here, buy homes here, and contribute to the economy here.
  • lilengineerboylilengineerboy Posts: 4,116
    How about that Fusion...41 mpg w/o the Prius stigma (or a 6 speed manual on the SE w/SYNC)?.

    How about that Jetta TDI...low end torque, a manual transmission and 50 mpg?

    How about the new Legacy...or has it pulled an Accord and jumped the shark?
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,695
    Well, the Jetta is a compact but good points on the Fusion vs. Prius and the Legacy.

    41 mpg is really good, but given it's possible to get near 40 mpg on several mid-sized I4 sedans on the highway (e.g. I got nearly 38 mpg in an Aura recently, and it doesn't have the top highway mpg rating in the class), there is the question about the huge price premium on the Fusion hybrid when the Fusion I4 is no slouch in fuel economy. I wonder how many people will buy a Fusion hybrid because it has that "stigma" (in a positive sense) of being a hybrid, when they could come very close to its fuel economy on the highway with a plain I4 Fusion. Not as "cool" and "green", but does the job for a lot less up front cash.
  • stephen987stephen987 Posts: 1,994
    Very good points, Backy. IMHO hybrids are a triumph of marketing over good engineering. At best they might make sense if most or all of your driving is in highly congested urban stop & go traffic. Mine isn't.

    Give me a conventional large-displacement four-cylinder in a car that isn't overweight, and I'll show you 35 mpg in real-world highway use, without the compromises of a hybrid. Doesn't matter if it's an Altima 2.5, Fusion, or what.
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,695
    Yes, and since my wife's car does almost all in-town driving, I will be looking at a hybrid (with the Prius the top contender so far) to replace our van when we "retire" from minivans in 2-3 years. But for people who drive mostly on the highway, I don't see the advantage of a hybrid vs. the best mid-sizers.
  • stephen987stephen987 Posts: 1,994
    Backy, your wife's driving really would justify a hybrid. From your other posts I am sure you'll be very thorough in your research. :)

    My driving is about 60% highway, 40% suburban, with very little urban congestion of the sort found in NYC, San Francisco, etc. Once in a while I drive in Atlanta or Houston, but that's mostly high-speed urban freeway stuff. So for me either a gas 4 with a very responsive transmission (either manual or automatic), or a diesel with a very broad torque curve would be most appropriate. So maybe an Altima CVT, or a manual Accord. Or whatever mass-market midsize (some variant of the Skoda Superb?) that VW is planning to build in Chattanooga, with TDI engine and DSG.
  • lilengineerboylilengineerboy Posts: 4,116
    My driving is about 60% highway, 40% suburban, with very little urban congestion of the sort found in NYC, San Francisco, etc

    My driving is 99.5% highway. My 07 Accord EX gets 31-34 mpg on summer/spring gas (at 70-80 mph) and the '05 Legacy gets 28 mpg at those speeds, but slowing (if you can stand it) gets over 30 mpg. I bet a GM car with the 3.8 would be in the 30s on my commute and that Jetta diesel would be off the chart.
  • akirbyakirby Posts: 7,675
    41 mpg is really good, but given it's possible to get near 40 mpg on several mid-sized I4 sedans on the highway

    Umm.....41 is the city mileage. You're not going to get better than upper 20's in the city with a conventional model.

    Not saying I disagree with the premise that a regular I4 is more cost effective, just pointing out the error in that part of the comparison.
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,695
    Right you are! The Fusion Hybrid's EPA highway fuel economy is only 36 mpg, which is very close to the EPA ratings of some I4 mid-sized cars including the Fusion (34 mpg). So that makes the Fusion Hybrid even worse of a financial proposition for people who drive mostly on the highway.
  • stephen987stephen987 Posts: 1,994
    Umm.....41 is the city mileage. You're not going to get better than upper 20's in the city with a conventional model.

    Yes, but on the highway the hybrid has little to no advantage over the conventional car. Hence my contention that only drivers whose regular beat is mostly low speed stop & go will benefit from a hybrid.

    ETA: Backy, you beat me to it!
  • mcdawggmcdawgg Posts: 1,667
    I believe Honda and Toyota also have their drive trains shipped over from Japan.

    Corolla and Camry I-4 engine made in USA, but I don't know about the V-6.
  • akirbyakirby Posts: 7,675
    Yes, but on the highway the hybrid has little to no advantage over the conventional car. Hence my contention that only drivers whose regular beat is mostly low speed stop & go will benefit from a hybrid.

    I totally agree with that. But the initial post was comparing FFH city mileage with the others highway mileage and I was just clarifying it.
  • hoyafanhoyafan Posts: 48
    For those considering a new midsize sedan, you should really check it out. You will really enjoy the technology and hybrid driving experience. It is downright "fun" to drive - not in a sports car sense, but it is still fun.

    Plus, you will feel that you've made a very smart decision when gas goes back to $4 next year!
  • mickeyrommickeyrom Posts: 936
    Hybrids in fact do get better mileage than conventional cars,ergo that quote is not quite accurate.How many cars average 40MPG on the highway.It can be done,but not with any regularity.My Optima managed 40.7,but only on one fill-up and 100% highway.My daughter has a Highlander Hybrid with a V6 engine and they get over 30 MPG highway.Not gonna come close to that with a regular Highlander.
  • mickeyrommickeyrom Posts: 936
    I love my Optima,and it is paid for,but I am considering it.Not likely it will be the Ford,too expensive,but maybe a Prius or Civic.I drove the Insight and found it too underpowered.I am used to a 4 cylinder car,but that thing is a snail.
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,695
    It's not so much that an ordinary I4 mid-sizer can routinely average 40 mpg on the highway. It's that they can average mid-to-upper-30s on the highway and cost about $10k less than a FFH or TCH. Very hard to make up that difference during typical ownership period for a car, even with gas at $4/gallon. As has been discussed, if the car is used mostly in the city and driven a lot, then it's more of a reasonable financial proposition to go with the hybrid, especially one like the 2010 Prius that can realistically average 50 mpg in the city, at least double that of a mid-sized I4 sedan.
  • igozoomzoomigozoomzoom Waleska, GeorgiaPosts: 791
    We have an '06 LX V6 4-door currently, in addition to an '06 Mazda3. The LX V6 wasn't a big seller (nor was the SE V6), according to several Honda dealers I've talked to. It has the EX wheels and power moonroof, just not the leather or the Nav option of the '06 EX...

    I'm hoping to find an '09 EX V6 (cloth) that has been sitting on the lot for a while and they're anxious to move....long-shot, but I'm hoping. :)
  • igozoomzoomigozoomzoom Waleska, GeorgiaPosts: 791
    The Honda J-series V6 (used in the Accord, Pilot, Ridgeline & Acura MDX/TL/RL) was designed in the U.S. and built at the Anna, Ohio Engine Plant. The Civic 1.8L is built in the Alliston, Ontario, Canada Engine Plant. So a lot of Honda powertrains are built in North America.
  • igozoomzoomigozoomzoom Waleska, GeorgiaPosts: 791
    According to Car and Driver, the 2009 Mazda6 i (with a 5-speed automatic transmission) outpaced the same car with 6-speed manual all the way to 80mph. The i Touring (2.5L/5AT) did 0-60 in 7.9 seconds...not too shabby for the 4-cylinder/auto combo! Mazda6 i Touring 5AT Road Test

    The Fusion SEL (2.5L/6AT) took 8.9 seconds (still quite decent) according to Motor Trend- Fusion vs. Accofrd.

    I suppose the Fusion's 6-speed automatic is geared more toward economy and the Mazda6's 5-speed automatic is geared for better performance?
  • akirbyakirby Posts: 7,675
    Basically yes - Mazda always goes for performance and Ford is going more for fuel economy - 1 mpg better than the Mazda. But it could also be the test conditions - different magazines testing different cars on different days in different weather. That can also make a difference.
  • jeffyscottjeffyscott Posts: 3,855
    When the least powerful engine available with the automatic can go 0-60 in 8 (or even 9 seconds), there really are not a lot reasons I can think of to get a manual or a V6. Since the mpg is generally about the same these days, about the only reasons I can think of for buying a manual are nostagia or to save $1000.

    Of course, these tests are based on driving the car in an abusive manner, but I would assume that there would also be little performance difference under more normal high acceleration conditions (eg. floor the automatic from a stop).

    Edit: I see it does..."street start", 5-60 mph, was 8.6s for manual and 8.1 for auto.
  • acdiiacdii Posts: 753
    I call BS on those claims that the Hybrids will fair less on the highway. I had an 07 Prius, I got 65 MPG on the highway with it doing 65 MPH. The car was rated at 60 city, 50 highway(at the time). My TCH gets 43 MPG on the highway, show me a mid size sedan with V6 power that can do that?

    When comparing a hybrid to a conventional car, don't look at engine size, look at overall power output, HP and Torque, and use that as your comparison, you will find the hybrids fit just a hair under the V6, and far above the I4 models, so when cost comparing, you need to compare them to the same model car that meets the power output, in the Camry, that would be the V6 models, and since the Hybrids are package cars, look at similar options, and you will see the hybrid cars are priced right at the same level as V6 models with options. The Fusion is priced nearly the same as the Camry in that respect, in fact the cost between the two in the Hybrid line is so close, that I think Ford will clean up Toyota in this field, the Fusion is a far better car.

    One other thing to consider, Resale value!!! You will make up the difference between a lower class I4 model vs the Hybrid, sine the Hybrid holds its value far more than the non Hybrid. I flipped my Prius and made money, and that was before gas shot up over $2.50 a gallon. I could turn around and sell my TCH right now for more than I owe on it, and I only put $500 down on the car. I couldn't say the same if it were a non Hybrid I4. The Hybrids are like Diesel trucks, you pay more up front for them, but make up for it due to their higher value down the road. My F350 Diesel will sell for more than a gas version of the same truck, maybe not as much as the difference from the beginning, but it is 11 years old and has 133K on it, but in a diesel, that's just broken in.
  • akirbyakirby Posts: 7,675
    You must drive downhill all day with a tailwind. Or you're bumpdrafting tractor trailers.

    You can't compare one car's EPA estimates with your actual mileage on a different car. And that's assuming we believe you really get that type of mpg.......
  • explorerx4explorerx4 Central CTPosts: 9,622
    the EPA estimates are more accurate for some vehicles than others.
    i just got back from a 1600+ mile trip in my explorer and was happy to average the EPA 19 mpg highway estimate.
    when i took a similar trip in my 04 focus(2.3 5 speed manual), i averaged 38+ with an EPA highway estimate of 33 mpg.
  • igozoomzoomigozoomzoom Waleska, GeorgiaPosts: 791
    I have an '06 Accord LX V6 currently, but I bought it more for the equipment (17" alloys, moonroof, power driver's seat). I would've been perfectly happy with the 4-cylinder in my car if they had one with the features I wanted. The V6 is overkill....most mid-size sedans have more than adequate base engines.
  • m6userm6user Posts: 2,966
    Could aerodynamics at speed have made the difference? If high speeds were involved the air resistance might affect the Explorer more than Focus.
  • thegraduatethegraduate Posts: 9,731
    Outside of the 17" wheels, you could've gotten a 4-cyl Accord with those features (alloys, power seat, moonroof). My 06 4-cyl has those things. :)
  • acdiiacdii Posts: 753
    Aerodynamics play a huge part in speed. The reason a Prius does so well is based on the fact it was designed to have a very low coefficient of drag(COD), Compare a brick to a jet fighter wing, one slices through the air, the other plows through. For a good example, if you were to take a say 1985 Grand Marquis, the one shaped like a box, with a 4.6L engine and trans used in a 1995 Grand Marquis, the 95 model will get better fuel economy at high speeds, mainly due to the aerodynamics of the body. This is the main reason SUV's get such poor fuel mileage, unless you lower the body down and smooth out the lines to reduce drag, you will never see large SUV's getting better than they get now, cant be done, even if you put a small engine and hybrid it(Hello GM?) . One of the reasons is you can only eek out so much from a drop of gasoline and still be emissions safe. Gasoline must burn at a rate of 17:1 to meet emissions standards and power performance, any higher or lower you run too rich or too lean, either way is bad news for the environment. Toyota tried to create a lean burn engine using ceramics, and it worked, got great fuel mileage, but they could not get the emissions down. In a Diesel engine, if you lean it out you raise NOX levels beyond current levels, the hotter the burn, the higher the NOX. I dont remember what the gasoline emissions were that shot up though.
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