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Mazdaspeed3 vs. VW V GTI vs. Civic Si

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Comments

  • aviboy97aviboy97 Member Posts: 3,159
    don't recall the bulky '95-99 Toyota Avalon w/ low-tech suspension riding this comfortably!

    Or any 95-99 VW for that matter
  • andres3andres3 Southern CAMember Posts: 12,885
    Okay... maybe it was exaggeration... but major exaggeration.... I wouldn't be too sure.

    I'd be willing to bet the actual ratio is close to 100:1 for Chrysler branded (jeep/dodge/plymouth) lemons vs. Honda lemons.
    '15 Audi Misano Red Pearl S4, '16 Audi TTS Daytona Gray Pearl, Wife's '19 VW Tiguan SEL 4-Motion
  • aviboy97aviboy97 Member Posts: 3,159
    100:1 for Chrysler branded (jeep/dodge/plymouth) lemons vs. Honda lemons.

    I still think that may be an exaggeration. Keep in mind, lemons are only considered, or reported as lemons, if the mfg buys it back from the customer. Mfg's do all they can to avoid that. Just because YOU think the vehicle is a lemon, does not constitute it a lemon, but, rather a piece of Sugar Honey Iced Tea :sick:

    A more correct statement may sound something like this: "The ratio of Chrysler brand vehicles to experience problems compared to Honda is likely to be 100:1" And that STILL may be an exaggeration!
  • forbesjforbesj Member Posts: 22
    I bet it's more like 5:1 or something like that.

    And I'm no Chrysler fan.
  • eldainoeldaino Member Posts: 1,618
    I don't really like lemons to begin with.

    ;)
  • creakid1creakid1 Member Posts: 2,032
    "Or any 95-99 VW for that matter"

    Wrong! The '98 Passat & '99 Jetta all rode so comfortably not even the '07 Accord can match. Consumer Reports also feels that the current MkV Jetta/Rabbit rides no more comfortably than the old '99 MkIV Jetta/Golf.

    B/c when I test drove the '99 Jetta, I noticed it's MSRP is lower than the less-comfy-riding '99 Avalon.
  • thegraduatethegraduate Member Posts: 9,731
    Me neither, and I live in the sweet tea capital of the country!
  • aviboy97aviboy97 Member Posts: 3,159
    The '98 Passat & '99 Jetta all rode so comfortably not even the '07 Accord can match.

    Wrong! First off, ride quality is subjective, and the 99 Jetta never rode anywhere near the comfort that I have when I am in my fathers 03 Accord.

    Consumer Reports also feels that the current MkV Jetta/Rabbit rides no more comfortably than the old '99 MkIV Jetta/Golf.

    Well, it better! It's a new design!! The MkIV ride was not all that great!

    B/c when I test drove the '99 Jetta, I noticed it's MSRP is lower than the less-comfy-riding '99 Avalon.

    Two totally different vehicles. The Jetta is a compact/mid sized vehicle, and the Avalon is a full sized sedan. If the Jetta was more expensive, it would have been a total rip off. The Jetta better compares to the Corolla, rather then the Avalon.
  • creakid1creakid1 Member Posts: 2,032
    "Wrong! First off, ride quality is subjective, and the 99 Jetta never rode anywhere near the comfort that I have when I am in my fathers 03 Accord."

    Good point. & to be reasonable, I did noticed that the '99 Jetta riding less than perfect -- sometimes slightly lumpy & sometimes slightly floaty. But the '95-99 (I never rode the '00 or newer) Avalon had quicker up-&-down motions over larger bumps & therefore didn't glide as well as the Jetta in a relaxing manner, at least when I sat in the back seat.

    "Well, it better! It's a new design!! The MkIV ride was not all that great!"

    Consumer Reports also has the tendency to notice the ride smoothness over the superficial road surface quite a bit rather than just larger bumps. That's most likely why they somewhat prefer the ride of the previous generation Passat/Jetta over the current ones. But now w/ Control Blades' better ride/handling compromise that made the cars "too" close to perfection, VW probably purposely made the ride a little coarse so buyers will spend more $ to get the Audi A6 instead.

    Consumer Reports also rates the steering feel not during the handling limit. That's why they found more steering feel in the MkV GTI than in the Civic Si. Ditto the G35 over the 325i. But other magazines pointed out that it's the other way around when these cars are being pushed to limit!

    I've been arguing w/ my relatives that VW's are great b/c they ride better than Japanese cars. & they hate VW's due to the nightmares they had w/ the two 1st-yr MkII Jetta's long time ago. But one of my cousins just returned the Passat after his 3-yr lease, then the next lease -- an '07 Accord -- only drew criticizms from his family member about the ride comfort, turning radius, can't see over the hood...

    Again, bulkier but still less comfy than the VW.

    The Euro Civic may be great on the track, & in many cases, beating the GTI, C-1 Focus, Mazdaspeed3, etc., but that's only when they didn't care about the ride.
  • eldainoeldaino Member Posts: 1,618
    ;)
  • eldainoeldaino Member Posts: 1,618
    Consumer Reports also rates the steering feel not during the handling limit. That's why they found more steering feel in the MkV GTI than in the Civic Si. Ditto the G35 over the 325i. But other magazines pointed out that it's the other way around when these cars are being pushed to limit!

    totally agree. but i do think the steering wheel itself is a bit nicer on the gti. :)

    The Euro Civic may be great on the track, & in many cases, beating the GTI, C-1 Focus, Mazdaspeed3, etc., but that's only when they didn't care about the ride.

    i've read that the regular euro civic rides great, if not as uber comfy as the mkV. Its when it comes to bumps that its nothing to write home about. same as the type r, but to a more noticable extent.
  • aviboy97aviboy97 Member Posts: 3,159
    Consumer Reports also has the tendency to notice the ride smoothness over the superficial road surface quite a bit rather than just larger bumps

    When it comes to reviews on vehicles, I do not hold CR all that high. I prefer to read Road and Track or Motor Trend for their opinion on how the car performs. Better yet, I like to see for myself.

    The only thing I find CR good for is long term reliability reports. They are fairly accurate in that respect.
  • blueguydotcomblueguydotcom Member Posts: 6,257
    Don't bother with the mags and do your own driving. No matter what people say, I couldn't live with boyracer feel of the Si or MS3. The lack of power in the Si, skateboard ride and bargain basement interior didn't hit for me but no reviews mention these things. Likewise, the busy ride of the MS3, the buzzy exhaust and the horrid clutch/gearing aren't brought up in reviews of the fast Mazda.

    Drive the cars on your own and totally ignore the mags. They offer nothing of value.
  • creakid1creakid1 Member Posts: 2,032
    "i've read that the regular euro civic rides great, if not as uber comfy as the mkV. Its when it comes to bumps that its nothing to write home about. same as the type r, but to a more noticable extent."

    the regular euro civic rides great? That was my point -- no way! Regular versions don't have lowered suspension, & the dyamics of this Euro-spec will be handicapped badly by its low-tech suspension.

    OK, take a look at this interesting Autoexpress 4-car comparison.

    Low-tech suspension made it trumped in trunk space, which also made it trumped in...:
    http://www.autoexpress.co.uk/carreviews/grouptests/204821/honda_civic.html
    "The precise pedals and steering are light enough to be easy to use around town, but also prove impressively responsive. That bodes well for the car’s driver appeal, and on the whole the Honda lives up to expectations. It’s grippy and well balanced, although it doesn’t tackle corners with the same panache as the Focus.

    Ride comfort is entirely acceptable, but all three rivals excel in that area, and the Civic comes across as rather sporting in comparison, with the dampers failing to fully isolate rough road surfaces."

    Best driver's car in the 61-hatch comparison test:
    http://www.autoexpress.co.uk/carreviews/grouptests/204822/ford_focus.html
    "The suspension is so well oiled, gliding over surfaces where its rivals, even the Auris (new Corolla), fidget and fight. It takes the sting out of rough roads,
    is never caught off-balance and carves through corners cleanly and effortlessly.

    In terms of driver appeal, the Focus is by far the most polished and involving car in this test – and that’s true of every single model in the 61-strong hatchback range."

    Comfort is priority:
    http://www.autoexpress.co.uk/carreviews/grouptests/204823/volkswagen_golf.html
    "The Golf doesn’t relish being hurried. It has a more laid back character than the zesty Civic, and is at its best when cruising at high speed. On motorways, very little wind noise penetrates the cabin. But on bumpy roads, the softer suspension means there’s more roll and wallow.
    In short, the VW isn’t as well controlled as its rivals here, and feels slightly lethargic. It turns in accurately enough, and the speed-sensitive steering is well weighted, but compared to the Ford it’s not a particularly engaging car to drive."

    Redesigned but still behind in "driving technology":
    http://www.autoexpress.co.uk/carreviews/grouptests/204820/toyota_auris.html
    "The stiff bodyshell has enabled the company to make the most of the new suspension set-up. Initially, it seems firm – roll is minimal through corners and the whole car is tightly controlled.

    As a result, the Auris is rarely caught out, and that means it’s reassuring to drive. It can’t match the Focus’s sparkling chassis and soothing road manners, despite being equipped with Toyota’s most positive gearshift since the Celica and offering very well weighted steering. But the new hatch is a big step forward nevertheless.

    Yet although the Auris will be welcomed by undemanding drivers, it’s flawed. The steering is uninformative, the A-pillars are intrusive and it weaves under hard braking, with the pedal soon becoming mushy underfoot."

    Looks like this Brit magazine thinks that buyers of econo boxes are cheapskates & should pick the Civic as 1st place due to the biggest engine's max pwr but w/ best fuel economy & interior/trunk room. Since we care about driving experience more, you should do your own ranking:
    http://www.autoexpress.co.uk/carreviews/grouptests/204819/family_hatchbacks.html- - - - - - - - - - -
    "Each rival here tested the newcomer in a particular area – the Honda Civic has unrivalled design and packaging, the Ford Focus the best ride and handling, while no other hatch is as well built or classy as the VW Golf. The Auris was found wanting in each department."

    So these Control Blades in the (C-1) Focus can easily "slice up" Euro Civic's (& the new Euro Corolla's) cheap suspension in both the ride AND the handling departments. Why would you tolerate a worse ride while the handling is not exactly better?
  • creakid1creakid1 Member Posts: 2,032
    That "61-strong hatchback range" actually means that there are 61 different Focus hatch, not 61 different kinds of cars. My bad.
  • 600kgolfgt600kgolfgt Member Posts: 690
    Drive the cars on your own and totally ignore the mags. They offer nothing of value.

    Thank you!!! My sentiments exactly... :shades:
  • thegraduatethegraduate Member Posts: 9,731
    Drive the cars on your own and totally ignore the mags. They offer nothing of value.

    Thank you!!! My sentiments exactly...

    I dunno that I'd completely ignore them. They can point out some things you might not notice on a test drive; little details that would annoy you later (or delight you later). Things the average buyer might not think about such as gooseneck trunk hinges versus struts, how much available cubby space there is, how a car handles in certain conditions that you won't experience in a test drive, etc...

    These reviews offer some value, but should not be the end-all.
  • blueguydotcomblueguydotcom Member Posts: 6,257
    I disagree completely. The car mags always focus on silly, superfluous things and overlook details. Furthermore, they flat our shill for carmakers. Go back to the launch of the original CTS and try to find one scathing review. I drove one after the car launched and at that moment swore off all magazines. They flat out lied about the CTS and its drive/handling.

    The cars in this segment, try to find them mentioning negatives of the Civic, GTI and MS3. They don't. 99% of car reviews now are fluff designed to hit the highpoints of vehicles and avoid saying anything too negative as it might have an LA-Times-effect (GM pulled advertising because the reviewer eviscerated GM). Even Edmunds delivers total fluff pieces now (and more often than not reviews silly vehicles like Lambos and Ferraris). Furthermore, what's a negative for some, is a positive for others. Read a CR review of a 3 series and they call the car rough riding with a sport package...strange, I'd call it sponge-cake soft.

    The only way to know if a car is right for you - drive it. The rest of it you can learn on your own without a bought and sold auto "journalist" whitewashing glaring deficiencies.
  • creakid1creakid1 Member Posts: 2,032
    They really criticized the right things VERY OFTEN? So do many British magazines. I was a sucker when I bought the Twin Cam '90 Protege, b/c Road&Track said it's so quiet on the fwy you better watch out for speeding tickets. Since when have heard of a quiet Protege?

    It was after I bought the car did C$D finally had a complete road test & pointed out the car fishtails on the fwy ramp & gave'em a "heart-in-the-mouth moment"! Of course, I already discovered this characteristic myself.
  • eldainoeldaino Member Posts: 1,618
    i agree with grad, they DO have something to offer, while this SHOULD be coupled with an actual test drive.

    the mazdaspeed3 has been called out on its less than perfect shifter and occasinal cheesines (not in build quality but in appearance) of its interior.

    the gti has been called out on its excess body roll and its not so great manual, and much higher than the competition price.

    the si has been called out on its lack of torque, its dash design, and sometimes its dbw lag.

    these are all things i've read in various magazines, not just limited to one.

    you don't like the boy racer thing...well aside from the exhaust note (which may not be to your taste and thats ok), the si does not look tremendously different than a regular civic, especially when clad in a color available on other trim levls of civic. Honda's interiors have always been praised for their build quality, and nice materials (even if its not as nice as the gti's), so this is just a personal vendetta you have against the si that few have a problem with.

    you seem to think that the ms3 is riddled with the same 'image' of boy racer, and you obviously didn't like the gti enough to buy it over your mini.

    what exactly do you want!? :sick:
  • blueguydotcomblueguydotcom Member Posts: 6,257
    el, A personal vendetta? Good grief. It comes down to this: I don't trust anyone I don't know to tell me something is good or bad. Heck, I don't even trust 95% of the people I know when it comes to cars, food or movies. When it comes to a car, which is a pretty heft investment, I can't see abiding by the words written by a paid-for-shill.

    To each his own. You guys can trust people with an agenda - an agenda to avoid expressing an honest opinion.

    Did you ever read my review of the Mini I bought ( http://bimmerfest.com/forums/showthread.php?t=216664 )? I tore it apart for its myriad of failings; seriously ripped it down for many of the car's poor interior design elements, it's wrong wheel drive layout and its soft suspension. Car criticism does not equal 90% effusive, prostrated praise with 10% equating to "I wish this were somewhat, sorta different." No car is that perfect. And a car review shouldn't sell a car, it should expose the cars warts, just a restaurant review or a movie review should shine a light on what doesn't work.

    BTW, I passed on the GTI for many reasons:
    1. The car wasn't as much fun as a Cooper S
    2. I figured whatever I got I'd replace in 09/10 when my fiancee has a kid.
    3. *My fiancee has an A3 and thus we already have a Mrk V VW in our garage. I'm not going to own two of the same car. Variety is the spice of life.
    4. I'd rather buy a used 4 door GTI and let some other poor sucker suffer the 25-30% first year depreciation hit (unlike the cooper which probably won't see that hit for 3 years).
    5. Fuel economy - compared to the Cooper S, the GTI's mileage isn't that great.
    6. Size and weight - I wanted something small and fun for once, not another huge car.

    *Our ownership of an A3 is the most important part of my decision to bypass the GTI. It's because of that car I'll look at a 335i sedan, a 328i wagon, 135i (if a sedan/hatch ever shows up), WRX wagon, Mazda6. The GTI is rumored to be getting some bumps for 08 (more power, other changes). We'll see by 2010 how things are shaping up with the Mrk VI GTI.
  • eldainoeldaino Member Posts: 1,618
    dont worry blue guy, i didn't mean to sound harsh, i just think you have always had it out for the civics interiro, which is normally praised as nice.

    I know understand your reasons for bypassing the gti, i had forgotten your finace had an a3.

    i do expect the gti mkVi to be out sooner than 2010 though, at least by a year, i think 08 is the last year for all mkV's.

    i'd bypass a 135i though, ther is no backseat room, literally. at least not for anyone bigger than 5 feet. and for the price it will probably be, i'd rather have an r32, which seats people comfortably.

    now the 3 series wagon would be FANTASTIC.
  • blueguydotcomblueguydotcom Member Posts: 6,257
    R32 is a two door - stupid VW won't release the 4 door R32 here. If that were out now, I'd be driving it. Alas only the FWD GTI 4 door is available, with AWD reserved for the 2 door.

    I will probably buy a 135i if it comes as a sedan or hatch by 09/10. I don't care about the space, so much as the ability to get into the back. As long as it's as big in the back as a BMW e30/Mazda Protege, it's big enough for my needs. The reality though - BMW probably won't release a 135i sedan or hatch here. Bummer. That cuts the field to the 335i sedan (alas no wagon), the underpowered 328 wagon and the WRX. Let's hope the Mrk VI gets to US shores soon. I don't expect it though as the Mrk V took forever to get here and it's only been on sale for a couple model years. I expect 2011 it will be replaced at the earliest.

    Sorry about the Civic interior but I've driven one frequently for 12-14 months - mother-in-law had an 06 Civic Hybrid (she lemoned it). I found the interior to feel exceedingly cheap and all around to be poorly designed and assembled. The side door panels feel like felt-lined cardboard. The controls all feel flimsy. The lighting's bad. And that two-tier design leaves me feeling like someone made a mistake and added the top pod later to make up for missing the speedo originally. It's not at the level of the Mazda or VW, in my experience.
  • eldainoeldaino Member Posts: 1,618
    the mkVI's should be here soon, as vw continues to loose money on the mkV. it wont look that different, but they are cheapening the prodcution process.

    maybe in 2011 when the new r36 comes out, maybe they'll make a 4 door version.
  • creakid1creakid1 Member Posts: 2,032
    6-cyl FWD platform means the front overhang is full of engine weight, unlike the RX-8. No wonder some Brit magazine had to pick the AWD 4-cyl A3 over the AWD 6-cyl R32 despite sacrifice in ride comfort. Only a few FWD platforms do not have the engine-weight ahead of the front axle such as the Renault 5 (Le Car), the Acura Vigor, & the Mini Cooper.

    If you want 6-cyl AWD, then place the engine mostly behind the front axle & start out w/ a RWD platform such as the G35 or the BMW 3-series. But factory sport package might not be available.

    If you like the heavy-weight new BMW 3-series, then be my guess & take the R32, which has a more substantial deliberate stable but less lively feeling than the FWD 4-cyl GTI & thus is even more distant to the light-weight Mini Cooper. The expensive R32 is really just a car w/ an invincible fool-proof handling good enough for unskillful drivers living in the snow belt, but not much fun.

    To me, the Mazdaspeed3 is already too hard edged, let alone the lunatic-handling Mini Cooper. I'd rather drive a softer-edge (but still light weight) car w/ 16" rims & do drifts more often.
  • carfanatic007carfanatic007 Member Posts: 267
    Maybe the reason you "disgree completely" is because you always buy cars that they find "much worse than average"??? :P
  • blueguydotcomblueguydotcom Member Posts: 6,257
    Creakid, I'm not looking for a 6 cylinder AWD but rather I desire something small, powerful 4-door and not FWD. I would love a GTI or A3 with AWD, 4 doors and the 2.0T, but alas VW only sells V6 models with AWD here. And I certainly don't want a massive, flabby, boring G35x or e90xi - I can't imagine anything worse than an e90 with AWD. Talk about neutering the car - BMW's AWD system blows. Okay, Mazda's front-wheel drive bias AWD system is worse but that's not saying much.

    Really, what it comes down to for me - VW is screwing over buyers by only offering AWD with the V6. I'd obviously prefer RWD and a chipped 2.0T but alas that's not even made.

    The GTI is fun, but the FWD angle will probably keep me from buying. I love my Cooper S but every day at least a few times per drive I'm reminded why I loathe FWD.
  • creakid1creakid1 Member Posts: 2,032
    130i M Sport 6-cyl RWD BMW vs...
    http://www.evo.co.uk/carreviews/cargrouptests/209950/alfa_brera_v6_v_rivals.html- -

    W/ the engine output well snubbed "in the first four gears" & "if you didn’t know better, you might think the MPS was four-wheel drive." "On smooth roads the ride is fine, tightly checked by the lowered suspension but with acceptable suppleness, but on lumpier B-roads the nose can start bobbing as it gets out of phase with quick-fire sequences of mild bumps. Attack a choppy corner and the steering’s limited feel isolates you from the mild scrabble that ensues as the inside tyre tugs at the apex, while grip is impressive once the nose has tucked into the turn. It’s a very nose-led experience, the rear refusing to budge even when diving in hard on the brakes. High marks for effectiveness, then, and a middling score for involvement." So, lack of steering-feel fun & lack of oversteer fun, but heck "on the laptop screen: best lap 1:31.3, a new record."
    http://www.evo.co.uk/carreviews/cargrouptests/209952/mazda_3.html

    All its rivals "here have transverse engines with end-on gearboxes, which means their front wheels can’t be pushed as far forward and their weight distribution is nose-heavy." Being the only RWD platform here & also having normally aspirated large displacement means "the engine is sensitive to the lightest throttle pressure" & therefore fishtail drift is just around the corner. Subjectively, all the rivals here including the more powerful 4-cyl turbo FWD Mazda3 can't have this kind of fun. But the BMW "remains a flawed car though, the feel of its chassis occasionally vague, its ride confounded by particularly lumpen B-roads." So it still can't trump in both ride & handling the way the Focus can.
    http://www.evo.co.uk/carreviews/cargrouptests/209954/bmw_1series.html

    Here comes the AWD GTI, or 4-cyl turbo R32 -- the Audi S3. Competent fool-proof handling combines w/ more "boosts from lower revs" than the Mazda engine.
    http://www.evo.co.uk/carreviews/cargrouptests/209953/audi_s3.html

    I think the Alfa is the only good-looking car here. But w/ "feel-free steering" & still has a "ride that’s firm and busy at a detail level", this not so agile car...
    http://www.evo.co.uk/carreviews/cargrouptests/209950/alfa_brera_v6_v_rivals.html- -
  • blueguydotcomblueguydotcom Member Posts: 6,257
    Thanks for reminding us of what we can't have. :( I swear an AWD 2.0T GTI would be a blast. Some simply tuning...yummy.
  • carfanatic007carfanatic007 Member Posts: 267
    A year and a few days, and 17,500 trouble free, hi reving miles. This car is a blast, and squeak/rattle free. Most fun car I have ever owned.
  • nectarnectar Member Posts: 4
    i was thinking awd would be one of the few things that would make my gti perfect (= (the r32 isn't really worth the extra 10K imo, especially since it's only offered with the dsg).

    as far as the 3 go....my take on it.

    the gti is the most balanced of them all. my little brother (well we're both in our 30s) has a mazdaspeed3 and he swears by it. i actually considered it, but i love VWs. the interiors just seem more refined. honda makes a great car, but just not a big fan of the styling.
  • blueguydotcomblueguydotcom Member Posts: 6,257
    My two knocks on the GTI/A3 -

    I can't accelerate hard out of corners and I can't accelerate hard from a stand still. AWD solves both.
  • nectarnectar Member Posts: 4
    yeah. that is my one huge gripe about the gti. fwd is just....eh.
  • creakid1creakid1 Member Posts: 2,032
    But even if you upgrade to a much more hardcore sporty setting on a RWD platform w/ a meaty normally aspirated V8 lighter than a BMW 6-cyl & placed mostly behind the front axle really going to get you anywhere (fun)?

    http://www.autoexpress.co.uk/carreviews/firstdrives/210130/bmw_m3.html
    "However, its stiff settings don’t cope so well with rough surfaces, where it proves edgy, with slightly numb steering.

    The M3’s engineering excellence should mean it’s a highly involving car to drive – but it doesn’t have the same ability to entertain at all speeds as Audi’s RS4, for instance. While technically brilliant, the BMW is less supple and engaging."
  • carfanatic007carfanatic007 Member Posts: 267
    I need something with more TORK.
  • eldainoeldaino Member Posts: 1,618
    WHAT?

    wow. just wow. so i'm assuming that when you posted the bulk of your comments, you had yet to try the vw out huh?

    so do you still think the si is the 'best'? i personally probably would have kept the si, just for the handling. the gli is a good handler too, but its not flat through corners. the mkV's biggest weakness imo. but the torque is nice.
  • scoobastevescoobasteve Member Posts: 3
    I test drove all 3 of these cars.

    I hated the SI. You have to drive it like it you're stealing it and I just couldn't get the hang it. I never seemed to go to the right gear. I guess I would get used to it if I had bought it but it soured my test drive so much that I just couldn't buy it. The layout of the guages was fine to me, I didn't mind the speedo being high up compared to the tachometer. And even with a nav system, it was the least expensive.

    The GTI was great. I drove one with the DSG transmission and loved it. I have to drive through some tough traffic which can be a chore with a standard, but this would have allowed me to still be involved with driving the car while being convenient during stop and go traffic. The biggest problem with the GTI is that to get one with a sunroof, DSG, and upgrade to the 18 inch wheels (I don't like the way the 17's look) the price would have been over 26K.

    The MSP3 just seemed to fit me perfectly. It's priced higher than the SI but with the added power, space, and amenities (I got the GT package) its justified. The shifter can be a bit vague sometimes and the clutch is very abrupt making it tough to get a smooth start and not having a sunroof is a bit of a drag but the power this car has in third gear is so intoxicating that you completely forget about all that stuff. I just can't imagine a better car in this category. The new Caliber SRT-4 might give the MSP3 a run in the straight line from 0 - 60, but I don't see how a vehicle that tall will ever be able to beat it in the corners, and it's interior is crap.

    And why people insist of pitting the MSP3 to Evo's and WRX's? Those are AWD cars and thousands of dollars more expensive.
  • eldainoeldaino Member Posts: 1,618
    And why people insist of pitting the MSP3 to Evo's and WRX's? Those are AWD cars and thousands of dollars more expensive.

    because of its strong grip numbers. but to me, that hardly justifies the comparisons. the other 2 are significantly faster, and handle even better.
  • blueguydotcomblueguydotcom Member Posts: 6,257
    For the pleasure of driving without FWD, I'd be willing to pay a few k more for a WRX (that assumes the new Rex is up to GTi/Mazda interior levels now).
  • tiff_ctiff_c Member Posts: 531
    For the pleasure of driving without FWD, I'd be willing to pay a few k more for a WRX (that assumes the new Rex is up to GTi/Mazda interior levels now).

    The Speed 3 is really nice inside and I'd say it's a few notches above my older Rex, but I haven't checked out the new WRX and it looks like it will need some mods right out of the box to kill all that body roll it's got.
    FWD is not my first choice but the Speed 3 looks really good. I'll take oversteer which I'm used to over understeer although I like my setup to be a bit neutral with a bit of oversteer.
  • creakid1creakid1 Member Posts: 2,032
    http://newsletter.autoexpress.co.uk/c/14s2ea5Bnoeq5

    Energy-wasting AWD combines w/ lack of steering feel. At least it's got good ride comfort:
    http://www.autoexpress.co.uk/carreviews/grouptests/210611/subaru_impreza.html

    The new Euro-built Saturn -- lack of multi-link rear suspension means a comfy ride is not even remotely possible if the handling has to remain decent, steering-feel sucks, too:
    http://www.autoexpress.co.uk/carreviews/grouptests/210614/vauxhall_astra.html

    With the Focus-II platform, the Mazda has the highest "driving experience" rating here, but its ride is not tuned comfortably the way Focus' are:
    http://www.autoexpress.co.uk/carreviews/grouptests/210612/mazda_3.html
  • blueguydotcomblueguydotcom Member Posts: 6,257
    I don't put any stock in magazine reviews. They say the Si has a good interior - it doesn't to my eyes. I'll visit a Scooby dealer soon to take a peak at the WRX. If it's up to par with my old 2003 Protege ES, then it's more than adequate to be a daily car.
  • creakid1creakid1 Member Posts: 2,032
    still has the best-looking interior, at least from the brochure :D
  • blueguydotcomblueguydotcom Member Posts: 6,257
    Perhaps. But in reality it's economy-car garbage - especially that felt like stuff on the doors.
  • eldainoeldaino Member Posts: 1,618
    it's economy-car garbage

    man blueguy, sometimes i've wondered if you have ever peeped inside of any other car that the civic competes with.

    Most would agree it has a high quality interior. You may not 'personally' like it, but to call it garbage is a bit harsh, and totally contradictory to the long history of quality interiors that the civic has had.
  • blueguydotcomblueguydotcom Member Posts: 6,257
    The interior is not at the level of past Civics. The civics of the 80s and 90s had better quality interiors by far. And yes, I've been subjected to cars like the Nitro and Cobalt. They're trash too. Saying the current Civic has a nice interior because the others are awful is like gloating one is top of his class at remedial summer school.
  • thegraduatethegraduate Member Posts: 9,731
    The interior is not at the level of past Civics.

    Oh, definitely not. I wish we could go back from electronic controls for the ventilation, etc.. to the levers which often get very stiff to adjust (as in my grandparents' 1997 Civic LX) where you could see the metal pieces attached to the mechanical parts back in the control unit of the A/C controls, don't you? Or maybe we can use the much smaller, more thinly padded although-not-comfortably-firm seats from those cars too! ;):D

    I personally haven't found a fit/finish/tactile quality problem in the new Civic. Just a differing opinion. :)
  • creakid1creakid1 Member Posts: 2,032
    I hate newer car's electronic controls for the ventilation. The '90-93 Accord had separate clicking buttons for "fresh air" & "recirculate" so I can feel them by hand & never had to keep my eyes off the road for one nano second.

    But my '00 Civc hatch has one soft touch (i.e., doesn't click), for A/C or recirculate, that had to be visually checked for on & off, & can't even be read under direct sun light, especially the indicator lights got dimmer as the car aged! Ditto my Focus ST, & even worse, the number of buttons found on (the premium Focus-II) Volvo S40/V50's fancy-looking "TV remote-like" super-thin center stack.
  • thegraduatethegraduate Member Posts: 9,731
    I hate newer car's electronic controls for the ventilation. The '90-93 Accord had separate clicking buttons for "fresh air" & "recirculate" so I can feel them by hand & never had to keep my eyes of the road for one nano second.

    I was actually talking about the Civic of the 80s and early 90s (which is what the previous person had referenced) which had levers. You gotta check those visually too.

    BTW, I have a 1996 Accord which has similar controls to the 90-93 models. The mechanical knob in that car binds easily and breaks the knob (I'm on number 4). I prefer the electronic knobs better.
  • creakid1creakid1 Member Posts: 2,032
    Before I bought my 1st-year-production '90 Protege LX, Mazda was well known for "easily-worned-down interior trims". But I took the gamble & found the whole car lasting longer than even the made-in-Japan Toyota's.

    I click the "AC" button million times a day (off for accelerating & uphills, on for engine-braking & down hills). & that big button may be worned out on the outside marking, it's still working perfectly today at about 200k mi. My recirculate lever, which has also been flipped back & forth many times a day, never turned stiff.

    I wonder if your '96 Accord is not made in Japan. My '98 made-in-California Corolla LE had a low-quality-plastic vent outlet that cracked, so I had to hurried back into this country before the warranty expired. Guess what? I didn't make it in time b/c my plane crashed due to a hurricane/typhoon :sick:
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