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Low End Sedans (under $16k)



  • jerchrijerchri Posts: 6
    For sure, ditch the Accent and Focus.
    I own a Mazda 3 so I'm obviously partial. For you it'll all come down to whether or not you want a car that's GREAT on gas or a car with a hint of European styling/comfort.

    Corolla's are unbelievable on gas. Simple styling that suits pretty much anyone and everyone, but nothing too unique. Excellent resale value and a well known, reliable engine.

    The Mazda3 is not as good on gas (gets around 5 mpg less than Corolla), but here's how it makes up for it. European styling (same C1 platform as some Volvos) for both the exterior and interior (sit in the Mazda3 and you'll forget you're in an econobox). Larger engine than Corolla (good for climbing hills). Excellent suspension and handling. *Drumroll* here's what Money magazine said..."The 3 posted strong reliability and owner feedback in its rookie year, which bodes well for resale values. Runner-up: Toyota Corolla"
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,906
    Calling the Mazda3 the "VW of Japanese cars" is very unfair to the Mazda3, in the reliability department. The Mazda3 has proven to be far more reliable than VWs.

    Also I've observed resale on the Mazda3 holding very well. I think a lot of that is there aren't many used Mazda3's to be had, plus there have never been big incentives on the Mazda3.
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,906
    In the real world, e.g. CR's tests, the Mazda3i automatic got only 2 mpg less than the Corolla--27 to 29. Plus it will put a smile on your face when you drive it. Best that can be said for the Corolla is that it probably won't put a frown on your face, unless you find the driving position unbearable like I do.

    If someone likes the Corolla, IMO they should also check out the Elantra GLS and Spectra. Both ride similarly to the Corolla (the Elantra sedan a little softer) but have superior back seat room and driving position (especially the Elantra). Plus a lot less money and the long warranty.
  • micwebmicweb Posts: 1,617
    I meant to emphasize that Mazda3's are more notable for handling and styling like VW than for their appliance like durability; which is not to say they have miserable quality control survey results like VW, from what I hear they are much more reliable than VW's. But I'd still give the nod to Toyota and Honda first as "safe bets" and good buys are a lot easier to find on Toyotas than on Hondas.
  • beantownbeantown Posts: 228

    Around here, if you're looking for a Corolla, you will most likely get the best price from IRA or Boch. They are very competitive with each other and are extremely willing to deal on these.....both can get you in a new Corolla CE for under $11K if you can drive a manual. If not, $13-14K is not out of the question.
  • ronald711ronald711 Posts: 44
    If anyone is your travels to dealerships in KY, OH, IL, MO, IN, TN, WV come across a 2007 Yaris base sedan w/ automatic with the power package in a flint mica, please have the dealer contact me Ron Malinowski 630-400-1852. Dealers are unwilling to trade or try to locate so Im gonna wait for them to call me, I am faxing 106 dealerships with my request tonight, but if you guys can help and maybe get a referral, thats great too! (wants power locks, windows, ABS, Cruise) on BASE
  • 204meca204meca Posts: 370
    I do not watch much TV, but tonight I saw the Yaris ad that features a spider made out of gas pump nossles. 1st the Yaris confronts it, scares it, runs it down, then sucks up the juices (gasoline that is). I thought it was the cleaverist, most creative add I have seen in a long time. Futhermore, it clearly displayed the purpose of the product in very memoriable manner. I think Toyota will get their money back many times on that one!
  • iluvmysephia1iluvmysephia1 Manson, WAPosts: 6,920
    I certainly understand why you want a 2007 Toyota Yaris base sedan with the automatic tranny, Flint Mica color and the Power Package. I have the new Yaris base sedan with the 5-speed on my futures list, albeit many many months ahead for a trade-in, if it ever happens. I like this new body style and I think it's engineered to deliver the goods in a very satisfying manner. It is worth it's $14,675 price (at least that's how much the one I let get away was selling for here in Pocatello, ID. It had the features I wanted and some for safety I didn't feel I even needed, they were there though), easily.

    What I don't understand with your situation, Ron, is why your local Toyota dealers won't spend a few sparable pennies and do some legwork for you and track one of these babies down for you. I find it lazy and disrespectful that they won't. :mad:

    Let me guess, it doesn't make them enough cash to spend the time doing this work for you. Nonsense!

    2011 Kia Soul Sport 5-speed

  • ronald711ronald711 Posts: 44
    Well, I put a $250 deposit, waited 6 weeks, dealership was great, explained refundable at any point, gave them every opportunity, they went to bat for me, they just don't exist in our region right now, they did but sold. So I understand, dealer didn't feel comofrtabl leaving me tied up with them when they could not get one on allocation after 4 attempts. but In inquring with so many other dealerships, this is an exact typical responds I get, and they just don't sit well with me.

    We can order your Yaris with the power package whenever your ready.The sooner the better. I 'll need a $1,000.00 deposit earnest money down to make the order.Will you be financing?, if so I need a credit statement as well.Other that we're good to go.The appraisal will be redone at the time of the trade.Subject to miles and condition as you may already know.

    And I the dealership does not wish to engage in any clauses stating if they can't get it in a reasonable time frame they will refund my deposit, My thought is clearly, I want many dealerships to know what I want, whoever can provide me a VIN # and estaimated delivery date to their dealership, then I will engage in the deposit, do you guys think Im out of line with this? if one dealer couldn't come through, what makes this guy above thing he can do it, he wants money so that if its takes 4 months, they got me stuck with them. Thats what I personally think is going on. So my thought every 2 weeks on allocation day, I will day 100 local dealership within 5 hour drive of me, and make my request clear. And restate that I am still in the market for this vehicle, lay out the options, and go from there, when I hear one has it, then Ill grab it. Until then I'm not a legal person and would not feel comfortable setting a contract with a dealership to set terms, eaiser to let the dealers come to me. And there are dealershpis that wont take a deposit from me until I test drive the car but they work on the honor system, if they can get the car I have first dibs on it, rear but their are dealers like that and Im willing to do everything I can do dealer with dealers like that!
  • iluvmysephia1iluvmysephia1 Manson, WAPosts: 6,920
    Yaris with your persistence and effort, Ron. I hope you get the one you want for the price you want. Keep us posted. ;)

    They are worth the effort!

    2011 Kia Soul Sport 5-speed

  • mwrobe1mwrobe1 Posts: 7
    You know...I can't understand must be some sort of conspiracy perpetrated by most dealers. Dealers seem to not want to sell alot of sub-compacts, yet IMHO there are plenty of people who want to buy them! I remember when I bought my Rio and and test drove other models...the Hyundai dealer had 2 '06 Accents (one powder blue and one red one sitting in the showroom, Scion only had 1 Xa (one in the showroom), Chevy had at least a dozen Aveos (props to them...I see more Aveos in my area than any other subcompact) Kia had a handful of Rios. I recently went to a Honda and Toyota dealer to see if they were stocked with a Fit/Yaris...they each had one in the showroom. What the heck? IMHO, the Aveo is the worst out of them all...but sell more because they're readily available.
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,906
    The reason you don't see many Fits and Yarii, and Scions and maybe even Accents, in the showrooms is because they are sold soon after hitting the dealership--or even before arrival. Fits in particular are very hot, selling in most cases for MSRP or above. The reason you see so many Aveos in the dealership is because the Aveo is the worst of the current crop of subcompacts. Also, the Aveo has been around a few years now so that is why you see more on the roads.

    Also, there isn't much markup on subcompacts, so the manufacturers have little incentive to sell them in large volumes.
  • ronald711ronald711 Posts: 44
    The dealership advised me the reason there is many subcompacts is they only are producing a small number, like 50,000 and he said if you consider how many dealerships and it turns out that each dealership may see 25 in an entire year. And I know for that one of the dealerships is not getting any in June on their allocation. But Im sure sales and ealership size and region all play into that determination, that is why I have gone outside the region in search of. I think Toyota has a great Product, and like when the Sony playstation came out, you had a hard time getting one, its just 4 times as difficult with my request. A Sony playstation is a playstion, you didn't have choice on features, they were all identical, here I am wanting a specific color and option package. and this is why I just let many dealerships know this is what I'm ready to buy, if you get one, call me.
  • chrisducatichrisducati Posts: 394
    How many Toyota dealerships are there in the USA? If the dealer chooses he can show you his allotment and a list of vin numbers. The dealer my sister uses in Charleston South Carolina (there are only two dealers in that area )has this on their website. You can see what is available in the next month for the whole south eastern region of the USA. It lists VIN, and color and options
  • tsgeiseltsgeisel Posts: 352
    My big confusion on this issue is the Yaris. When I went in a few weeks ago to my local Toyota dealership, they couldn't show me a Yaris Liftback. In fact, I was told that the whole of the Northern California region would be getting 23 of them in the next shipment. And there are a lot of Toyota dealerships in Northern California.

    Perhaps it's just paranoia based on demand. Perhaps the subcompacts haven't been selling well in your area at those dealerships, so the numbers are kept low - creating a lovely catch-22 effect. Where I am (San Jose), finding an xA isn't that difficult, and the Accent isn't that bad either. But finding an Elantra was much easier, and the local Toyota dealership had more Matrix's in stock.

    As they say, your milage may vary.
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,906
    Of course it is easier to find an Elantra--it's a six-year-old design that will be replaced in a few months, and has been surpassed by newer compacts like the Civic and Mazda3. Rebates aren't as good on the Elantra as they have been in past years, either. And the Matrix isn't exactly a new model.
  • iluvmysephia1iluvmysephia1 Manson, WAPosts: 6,920
    really coming out in just a few months? I spose if they're gonna do the fall of 2006 thing for their 2007 Elantra it will be out in just a few months. Are you looking into getting a 2007 Hyundai Elantra, backy?

    BTW, is a 2007 Elantra with a 5-speed tranny, A/C and a reasonable stereo going to sell for around $14,000 or so?

    2011 Kia Soul Sport 5-speed

  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,906
    I will definitely check out the new Elantra when it is time for me to buy my next car, but that won't be until 2008 at the earliest. Until then I will have to "make do" with my loaded '04 Rally Red Elantra GT hatchback. :)

    I bet a base Elantra as you describe will be pretty close to $14k; the starting price on them is supposed to be "under $14k" but that is w/o destination. One change for '07 is that the base GLS doesn't have as much equipment as for '06; you will add option packages for things like all the power toys. But at least ABS and 6 airbags will be standard, and according to a note on, ESC will be standard also (but I will believe that when I see it).
  • germancarfan1germancarfan1 Posts: 221
    You can bet that a decently equipped (with power toys and A/C) 2007 Elantra is going to cost you $16K+ (including destination).

    Look at the 2006 Accent...A decently equipped one ( and when I say decently equipped, all I mean is A/C and power) costs you an alarming $14,800. And thats for a fraking Accent! Edmunds didn't exactly find this class leading either in their recent review.
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,906
    The MSRP of a well-equipped 2007 Elantra may very well be $16k (note the MSRP of a stick Civic, Corolla, or Mazda3 with power package and full safety gear is $17k+). But that Elantra won't cost me $16k, unless I insist on buying one when the car first debuts. There will undoubtedly be rebates and discounts available that will bring the price down $2000 or more, based on recent history with the Elantra and other Hyundai models.

    On the Accent, the list price of a well-equipped Accent (not just AC and power package but 6 airbags, ABS with EBD, remote locking with alarm, and 15" alloys) is $14,495. There is a $1000 general rebate and discounts are readily available, so for example the Edmunds TMV in my area now is $12,879, which is considerably less than comparably-equipped cars from Honda or Toyota.
  • germancarfan1germancarfan1 Posts: 221
    "here will undoubtedly be rebates and discounts available that will bring the price down $2000 or more, based on recent history with the Elantra and other Hyundai models."

    There goes any hope for a decent resale value. It will be worth nothing like my 2004 Elantra. Wonderful.
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,906
    I can't imagine why you would have ever bought a Hyundai. It seems they can't win with you. If they try to prop the prices up closer to their competitors, they are overpriced. If they keep the prices down with rebates and discounts, you worry about resale value.

    If you save money up front, like I did on my '01 and '04 Elantras, resale value is not an issue. I'd rather have the money up front rather than waiting 5-10 years.
  • tazerelitazereli Posts: 241
    I think its interesting how some of these cars from a slightly higher echelon (compact vs. sub-compact) compete almost price-wise. Given that there seems to be a $1K-1.5K difference between the 2 classes. I think its wiser to go for the slightly larger car and still enjoy the benefits of owning a small car, just not too small.

    FYI, your credibility went out the window with the first insult. I dont think there is any need for the namecalling esp. from someone who's been a member for all of a month. Someone like backy has been here for way longer than you and some of us actually value his opinion. I'm sure that I'll be your next target but as a real bonafide grown up, I dont care. :P
    Anyway, happy driving.

  • kagedudekagedude Posts: 407
    Frontal and Side crash ratings are the most common tests, how about rear crash ratings?

    My friend sent me a pic of my old 2002 Hyundai Accent GL. It was plowed by an SUV (Pathfinder I believe) going 30-40mph last January. The right rear door was open which is why the right side is crushed. The left rear side held up okay. There were 3 passengers in the back and 2 in the front. All walked out okay with no injuries. Hyundai is not so bad after all with their crash rating. :P!photoLoc=.59a4ec82&skipNext=0&su- bmitNext=1&noThumbs=1#pic
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,906
    Those are important, too. I am glad to see more automakers put active head restraints into small cars, e.g. the Civic has those (and scored well on the IIHS rear crash test) and the 2007 Elantra will have them. I'd like to see them percolate down into the least-expensive cars, e.g. Accent, Fit, Rio, Yaris.

    It will be interesting to see how all these new low-end cars fare in the crash tests, since they all have side bags and curtains standard (except the Yaris). I don't think IIHS scores have been released on any of them yet.
  • mwqamwqa Posts: 106
    What are active head restraints?
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,906
    If you are rear-ended, they automatically move forward to protect your head from whiplash.
  • germancarfan1germancarfan1 Posts: 221
    Hope you don't sit in the rear seat in the 2006 Accent. It received a paltry 3 star rear side impact rating. That's pretty much the lowest NHTSA gives.

    I'm suprised by your friends's car. The 2002 Accent received some of the lowest scores from any car in recent years.
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,906
    No, 3 stars is not great. But the Accent has company. Other 2006 model cars that got 3 stars in the rear side impact are:

    Chrysler Sebring
    Dodge Stratus
    Ford Taurus
    Kia Rio
    Kia Spectra
    Mazda Mazda3
    Nissan Altima
    Pontiac Grand Prix
    Suzuki Verona
    Toyota Camry
    VW New Beetle

    At least the Accent got dual 5 stars for frontal impact and 4 stars for frontal side impact, which is better than any other car in the list above except the Camry (tie). And most of the cars in the above list are larger than the Accent. We'll have to see how the IIHS rates it. Since they take head injury into account, the Accent could come out better there with its standard side curtains.
  • germancarfan1germancarfan1 Posts: 221
    Considering the Mazda3 and Nissan Altima were not tested w/ side airbags, while the Accent, with side airbags still scores a meager 3 stars, seems a pointless comparison.
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