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Mainstream Large Sedans Comparison

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  • I drove a new Impala with the V6 and it drove like a boat. The handling was poor and the V6 is really underpowered for the weight of the car. Whether you want "kick" or not I don't think you would be happy with the V6 Impala.
  • guestguest Posts: 774
    bilwfriend....

    both are good vehicles, so it comes down to a matter of personal preference. My neighbor has an impala and loves it. Personally I like the looks of the impala over the ford also....

    Roland
  • The Impala has two V6's available. I know one
    has around 245 hp's, can't remember how much
    hp's the smaller V6 has, but I would think the
    larger V6 Impala would have good pick-up.
  • The Five Hundred is a very nice room car that cannot get out of it's own way. Merging onto a freeway or attempting a quick 2-lane pass are knuckle-whitening exercises.

    That's no problem in MY 500. Granted, I have the AWD version, which comes with the CVT.

    Perhaps you have the non-CVT transmission, and that's the problem?

    If you want to accelerate in MY 500, just mash the gas pedal, and off you go!
  • joe97joe97 Posts: 2,248
    3.5L V6 - 211 HP / 214 lb-ft TQ
    3.9L V6 - 233 HP / 240 lb-ft TQ

    Just replace both with the 3.6L V6 and call it a day ;)

    And the SS carries the 5.3L V8 - 303 HP/ 323 lb-ft TQ
  • Actually, compared to my old 94, the new ones ride too firm for my tastes. The 94 was much softer and better isolated from the road. My current one is an LSE, but I'm thinking of swapping out the rear air suspension bags for the ones designed for the Town Car to soften the ride. That is something the average motivated shadetree mechanic could do.

    Different strokes, but I love the Grand Marquis - I'll drive them as long as I can, which will be a long time since they last so long.

    I just replaced my fuel filter on my 2002, as I do every 60,000 miles. Two clips, one clamp, slip it out of the cradle, put the new one in the cradle, and reattach. It took longer to jack the car up than it took to replace.

    $9 every 60,000 miles is pretty cheap insurance for clean gas.
  • I'm glad the Azera automatically upshifts in manual mode. I had the tunes blasting, had her in manual mode. Took off from a light, forgot to shift...next thing I know it shifts to second gear...good thing. :blush:
  • "If you want to accelerate in MY 500, just mash the gas pedal, and off you go!"

    In regard to your AWD Five Hundred, that's precisely what you have to do with my FWD Five Hundred -- mash the gas pedal and do it often. And watch the gas gauge drop in the process. I sometimes feel like I'm flogging a wounded animal.

    Test drove an Impala LTZ (3.9 AFM V6) last night & this morning. Lots of get-up-and-go. Even my wife, who can't tell one car from another, commented on how much peppier it was than our Ford. Just wish it had a bit more rear seat room. Think we're going to hold out for a Lucernce CXS or Cad DTS.
  • plektoplekto Posts: 3,738
    Welcome to Ford and GM.

    That's not-so-affectionately known as "Wide open throttle lag". The tall gearing to make the EPA MPG figures look artificially good and the large engine that develops its power up high(best for 0-60 published times) - results in a car that spins up too slowly and is a total slug in city traffic.

    The GM 3.6 and the VVT models from most of the imports exhibit NONE of this behavior, though. Ford and Chrysler - don't have engines like this for the most part.

    I drove a 500 and it was like a very nice Coutour. Same full second from mashing it hard until it decided to spin up and downshift. Dreadful. Can't imagine what 100K miles of wear would do if the NEW engine/drivetrain felt worse than a decade old Camry.
  • Check out a Hyundai Azera. If you think I am joking, test drive one yourself. My family currently has 2 toyotas and we just bought a new Azera. Check out the limited version with leather seats. I'll admit the hyundai's "premium" cloth seats look rather cheap. The gas mileage also probably won't be as good as the avalon, but it takes regular gas, whereas the avalon takes premium.

    I love the car so far. I've put 500 miles on it so far and the car drives like a dream. I've never driven an american large car so i can't say how they are, but from what I've heard, overall, Avalon is #1, Azera is #2, and Lucerne is #3. I picked the Azera because of the price and features, and predicted reliability. I test drove an avalon before purchasing an azera and couldn't figure out why it costs 6k more than tha azera. Anyhow, that's my .02$
  • Oh, and I'm looking at a $13,500 budget (before taxes)...

    I've considered the Grand Marquis, but rear wheel drive in Wisconsin concerns me.

    The Chrysler Pacifica is also appealing, but only in the base model configuration, and that's a 210 hp engine dragging a 4,500lb car behind it! And the EPA MPG of 18/25 is optomistic, as the Grand Caravan gets that, while being a few hundred lbs lighter.

    Sounds like either the Chevy or Ford will need to be floored while merging, which I do now in my 240hp Honda Odyssey and my 150 hp Dodge Stratus.

    The push rod design of the Chevy engine will probably hold up better then the Ford 'modern' engine, yet the Ford has a 6 speed tranny compared to the Chevy's 4 speed.

    The Ford has a 2.4cu ft bigger trunk and a taller seating stance, but the Chevy seems to have a little more passenger room width wise.

    Thanks for the lively discussion tho!!!
  • gamlegedgamleged Posts: 442
    This 2006 Azera Limited is the largest car I've ever owned, my having begun with a new 1962 VW Sunroof Sedan, progressing to a new 1965 Karmann-Ghia convertable, a new 1975 Honda Civic CVCC, a new 1977 Honda Accord and a used 1990 Honda Accord LX (which I still have).

    However, as I took my 1958 driver's license test in the family '56 Lincoln (about 5000 lbs at a dollar a pound back then, some 18 feet of tail-finned car), I have "large car' in my genes, so to speak... ;)
  • tjc78tjc78 JerseyPosts: 5,025
    The Avalon doesn't need premium, runs fine on 87.

    1999 Chevy S10 / 2004 Merc Grand Marquis / 2012 Buick LaCrosse

  • mash the gas pedal and do it often. And watch the gas gauge drop in the process

    That's what the gas pedal is for. :D

    And don't worry, ANY vehicle that you accelerate quickly (assuming similar weights and drag coefficients) is going to plummet the gas mileage while it's doing so.
  • I drove a 500 and it was like a very nice Coutour. Same full second from mashing it hard until it decided to spin up and downshift. Dreadful.

    Then you clearly had the 5-speed tranny. Try it with the CVT, instead. There isn't that "one second delay". I'm quit e familiar with that because of the Tauri I've owned.
  • joe97joe97 Posts: 2,248
    The fuel efficiency of the Avalon, much like other similar vehicles requiring similar fuel rating, is rated using premium. Sure you can run regular but it is not likely you will achieve the same fuel economy as it is with premium, which is recommended.

    On that note, I've even heard Toyota sales reps at various dealers mention 280hp (prior to SAE) on premium and 268hp (SAE rating) on regular...I could only laugh and respond with SAE.
  • xtecxtec Posts: 354
    I agree with you.If you buy a vehicle and it calls for premium,you should use premium.If you can't afford to put in premium,don't buy the car.Your asking for trouble down the road with carbon buildup,dirty injectors,poor performance,and loss of fuel economy.If you remember the Neon R/T,DCX said you would have 150 horse with premiun only,any thing less would not give you the advertised horsepower.
  • Agree with your posting.

    We bought a 2007 Lucerne CX and really enjoy the smooth,
    and quiet performance of the 3800 engine and 4 speed auto.

    Have yet NEEDED to "mash" gas pedal to the floor in over 3 months of city / highway driving situations and have never felt a bit of the dreaded hesitation problem as mentioned in the other cars with the 263 or 268 HP.

    There must be something to the torque vs. horsepower argumemt after all, as this car is rated at 197HP but feels like more than that, in everyday driving.

    My old Park Ave had 170HP,and drove it for 10 years, now I have 197HP in this refined version of the Buick 3800 engine.

    I think the majority of people will find this more than adequate unless some plan time doing race track skills on local highways!

    I tested both Avalon and Azera before buying Lucerne.
    Lucerne's engine does not sound like a jet engine, (like the Avalon did,)when doing a simple highway passing test.
    Worse than that,Avalon hesitated for what seemed like a really long second before it did anything!

    Lucerne does a better job at isolating bumpy roads from the driver, while maintaiting ride control,throw in the standard auto load leveling system as you mentioned and yes the choice is clear.

    This car is built in the same plant as Caddy DTS and shares the same chassi(platform).

    PS 28-30 MPG (highway) seems like a bonus with such a great riding "full-size car.
  • imidazol97imidazol97 Crossroads of America: I70 & I75Posts: 18,394
    >My old Park Ave had 170HP,and drove it for 10 years, now I have 197HP in this refined version of the Buick 3800 engine.
    I think the majority of people will find this more than adequate


    It's the torque at the usual accelerating motor speeds that makes the difference. Your car is producing 220 lb/ft approx from 1800 to 3300 which I find is my usual motor speed accelerating from a stop sign. Most cars won't be used at their horsepower max rated speed because they're not going to drive that fast and that would only be reached in lower gears for passing, maybe.
  • batistabatista Posts: 159
    The only reason why your Buick 3800 sounds/feels refined is because you are not pushing it hard. I used to drive a chevy with the 3800 and it doesn't sound good when pushed hard.
    The 3800 is overated and most cars have good torque output at idle unless the engine is less than 3.0L like the Honda S2000. With variable valve timing OHC engines are way better than OHV unless the pushrod engine is a V8 and greater than 300 cubic inches.
  • imidazol97imidazol97 Crossroads of America: I70 & I75Posts: 18,394
    >The 3800 is overated and most cars have good torque output at idle unless the engine is less than 3.0L like the Honda S2000. With variable valve timing OHC engines are way better than OHV unless the pushrod engine is a V8 and greater than 300 cubic inches.

    Those are opinions and you certainly may have them. Just remember others have their experience with 3800s and have different opinions.

    BTW: do you hav data for your statements here? "Way beter than OHV"?
  • xtecxtec Posts: 354
    There is only one OHV engine I like ,and thats the Hemi,other then that I rather have the OHC.They rev up higher then a pushrod and get to your max horespower quicker.That what makes the Mustangs so fast.
  • batistabatista Posts: 159
    It's no secret that OHV aren't refined unless its big like 5.7L Hemi and 6.0L Corvette. I felt it and so did all professional car reviewers.
  • batistabatista Posts: 159
    I would have purchased the Charger Hemi R/T if it didn't have MDS. I don't trust the 4-8 switch reliability and I drive only in the city and that is why I purchased a loaded SXT with 3.5L. If it was a full time V8 then I would have paid the extra $2-3K and gotten the Hemi.
  • tjc78tjc78 JerseyPosts: 5,025
    Haven't we been down this road before. The 3800 is bullet proof OLD technology. It does the job but the future is engines like Toyo and Nissan 3.5's and even GM's 3.6 if they can get it as reliable as the 3800. Which might happen once it is 50 years old too.

    1999 Chevy S10 / 2004 Merc Grand Marquis / 2012 Buick LaCrosse

  • quietproquietpro Posts: 702
    The 80s were great but it's now almost 2007. While Detroit had some big problems back then, they have come a long way since and I think it is shortsighted to ASSUME that their current offerings have any worse reliability than their counterparts. I've owned nothing but American cars since the late 80s and have never had reliability issues.

    Underestimating Detroit is likely what will bring them back from the brink...assuming they come back. They've learned some hard lessons and I'm excited about what they'll be offering in the coming years.

    My point is that it won't take 50 yrs to make the new products bulletproof. I think they are starting out just as good as the competition...regardless of the technological differences.
  • xtecxtec Posts: 354
    I agree with you.I have a 06 Charger SXT and its one of the best Mopars I ever owned.Thats 36 years of driving Mopars.I also worked on all three cars for over 23 years and thats one reason I drive Mopar.Plus I worked on police cars and that helped.I think the competition helped the American cars
    and they are being built better.Bad economy and high health ins. is killing the Industry.
  • plektoplekto Posts: 3,738
    Bulletproof old technology is a good thing in many ways.

    Quote:
    Worse than that,Avalon hesitated for what seemed like a really long second before it did anything!

    That's because the GM design is a brute-force old school piece of technology. It shifts based upon throttle and rpm like it should and doesn't try to out-think you.

    And it costs less than half as much to fix.

    Oh - it's just as reliable as the Toyota in terms of miles. Old technology with all of the bugs worked out by now.

    Though - the 3.8L is underpowered for the weight of the car. The V8 otoh, is superb.
  • "Have yet NEEDED to "mash" gas pedal to the floor in over 3 months of city / highway driving situations and have never felt a bit of the dreaded hesitation problem as mentioned in the other cars with the 263 or 268 HP. "

    I hear you. I've had 5 vehicles with the 3.8L OHV Buick V6 and everyone single one of them performed as you describe yours. Moreover, since my father passed away, I've bought 3 LeSabres for my mother and each of them were/are (she's has a 2005 Limited currently) every bit as smooth and powerful as my '03 LeSabre. Looking forward to replacing my Five Hundred with either a Lucerne or DTS.
  • tjc78tjc78 JerseyPosts: 5,025
    The hesitation thing absolutely drives me nuts. With the newer computerized transmissions with "intelligence" as the manufacturers call it, learn how you drive. Think about this, you "tenderfoot" the car 90% of the time accelerating slowly not hitting the passing gear etc. Naturally, when wide open trottle is asked for the trans gives a slight delay when downshifting because it is not used to doing it. Now if you drive with a heavy foot, the computer learns this and downshifts immediately. I notice this when I drive my Mom's Highlander, her car gives a good 1/2 to 1 second delay before spooling up and taking off (on WOT), she never steps on it. If I drive the car for an extended amount of time it becomes more responsive, and no, I am not imagining all this.

    1999 Chevy S10 / 2004 Merc Grand Marquis / 2012 Buick LaCrosse

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