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Considering a non-Subaru car; talk me out of it!
This last weekend I was visiting Virginia and rented a Nissan Versa. I was surprised at how much fun I had driving it! Like my Forester, it has a boxy shape with great viewing angles, comfy "upright" style seats, and actually I felt that it was slightly more powerful at accelerating. I had a blast driving it around the hilly country roads of rural Virginia. I considered the idea of switching to a small car like that. Back when I purchased the Forester in 2005 I had been torn between getting a super-compact and an SUV (for some reason both car shapes appeal to me, perhaps because of the seating styles and viewing angles).
Then I returned to my home in the snowy hell that is New England and remembered why I bought the Forester in the first place. The Subaru is great because I've never had to think twice about the weather -- if I feel like going out I do so, regardless of the snow situation. I've become used to backing up over snowdrifts and making three point turns on our icy driveway without bothering to shovel myself out first. Would it be a huge adjustment to switch to a small car? Would I feel that I'd made a mistake? Would my Versa disappear into one of the cavernous potholes in my neighborhood, never to be seen again? I'd like to hear from someone who drives both a Forester and a small car (i.e., Nissan Versa, Honda Fit, Toyota Echo/Yaris, Scion xD). Bonus points if you are from New England or somewhere comparably snowy.