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Looking for semi-luxury car under $25,000

dwmmacdwmmac Member Posts: 1
edited March 2014 in Audi

Hello All,
I'm looking for a car to purchase on the West coast. I would like to buy a car that's used but in great condition with a low amount of miles with the intent of using it while I'm here and driving it to the east coast when I move there next year. Here are the characteristics I'm looking for in a potential car:

  • Low miles
  • Semi-luxurious (and comfortable)
  • Good handling in bad conditions (ice & snow)
  • Ideally, good gas mileage
  • Long lasting
  • Nothing like an SUV, but nothing overly small. A mid-size car.

I have been looking at several newer cars, and I would really appreciate if anyone could comment on them, or suggest a new one.

  • Subaru Legacy - great handling, but less luxurious than the other options
  • Infiniti (G35/G37x? Suggestions on model?) - not sure about winter handling, or maintenance cost
  • Audi (not sure what model) - Good handling, I believe, but more expensive to repair
  • BMW? - Haven't really considered

If any one could lend a hand in suggesting a car or commenting on the ones I've listed, I would really appreciate it.
Thank you for your help!

Comments

  • MarkHolthoffMarkHolthoff Member Posts: 101

    Sounds like a fun search. Of those you listed, I like the Subie best because of its great reliability, standard all-wheel-drive and also because I think it'll be much easier to find a great low-mileage used example in your price range. Good luck!

  • kyfdxkyfdx Moderator Posts: 236,942

    If gas mileage is important, throw out the Infiniti.. 327 HP is fun, but it's a heavy car that sucks fuel.

    If you can live with FWD, then a VW Passat is a nice car, and it depreciates fairly quickly, which makes it a good buy in the used car market.

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  • Kirstie_HKirstie_H Administrator Posts: 11,148

    I'm giving a second vote to Mark's choice. I had a G35 and a good friend had a G35x. My G35 was awful in the snow, and while the G35x was pretty good, the sportiness and handling was sacrificed for the AWD. Also, it chewed through brake pads and rotors, and nothing was cheap to replace/repair. Having said that, I didn't put a dime into repairs outside of wear-and-tear items in 100k+ miles. When it got totaled, I was looking at Subies as a replacement, and availability in my price range at the time was the only issue that prevented me from getting one.

    I'd veer away from used Audis and BMWs unless you can get a good CPO deal with a good warranty. But, then you're looking at spending more than you would on a comparable Subaru.

    Passat, as kyfdx suggested - I'm biased against VWs, having owned one. Nothing hideously expensive went wrong on mine, but it was in the shop a lot for niggly electrical problems. Come to think of it, that could be a downside of the Audi & BMW.

    Not sure if either of these are too small for you to consider, but a few-years-old Lexus IS or Acura TSX might be in your range.

    If you test drive some of your (expanded) options, feel free to come back and ask for more details on your favorites!

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