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Midsize Sedans Comparison Thread

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Comments

  • robbiegrobbieg Posts: 342
    Clearly, GM targets different buyers with Saturn and Chevy but for some reason they haven't divulged the differences between the two brands. In my opinion, a Chevy is more like a Hyundai and Saturn a Honda. However, I don't think GM would agree with me. It also could be that GM feels that Chevys only compete with Fords and Chryslers and that Saturns compete with the imports. If it is not one of those I don't know why they have both Saturn and Chevy.
  • captain2captain2 Posts: 3,971
    have a lot of faith in Honda coming up with something 'revolutionary'. If you think about the current J V6, on paper, it should be lagging a bit technologically - until of course, you turn the key, at which point it is every bit as smooth and willing as the Toyota and Nissan engines, the other class leaders. Proof that there is a difference between an engine that looks good on paper and one that actually is good.
  • 14871487 Posts: 2,407
    No one said this can happen overnight. 20 years ago Toyota was known for making midsize cars and econo cars with four cylinders as well as a handful of small underpowered trucks. 20 years ago people would've thought the idea of a $38k Avalon was absurd. Same applies to Hyundai 10 years ago when they had a small lineup of small cars. Now they are launching a SUV that will start near $30k. Brands expand and move upmarket all the time. VW has spent the last decade or so doing the same thing.

    As for awareness, that is what advertising is about. It will take a while, but people will learn about Saturn's new products. Again, I dont see these issues as reasons no to buy a Saturn. Are you saying you wouldnt get one because you feel the brand awareness isnt where it should be? I dont buy cars strictly on the bases of it selling 300k+ copies per year.

    I also dont get why you feel Satrun is a semi-upscale brand. The Aura and Outlook are priced in line with their competition at Toyota and Honda. Saturn isnt putting "premium" pricing on their vehicles.
  • 14871487 Posts: 2,407
    Most reliability surveys dont break down ppv by severity or expense of repair. This isnt unique at all. JD POwers just gives problems per 100 vehicles but there is no additional weight given to "serious" problems. Obviously keeping track of that would make the survey and its results very complex. The same applies to CR and their little dot ratings system. When a car gets an average rating you dont know if thats because of a high rate of windsheild wiper problems or leaking head gaskets.
  • The lack of a 4-cylinder Aura is one of the reasons they aren't quite comparable to Camry/Accords. Those buyers who opt for the more fuel economical 4s will pass up on the Aura. And given how well Accord I4s sell... there is definitely a market out there for them. Also Accord/Camry base MSRPs start in the teens, not the 20+k range... thus the Aura being semi-upscale.
  • thegraduatethegraduate Posts: 9,731
    I have to wonder, if both this survey and one posted previously are both sponsored by Warranty Direct, why are the results so drastically different?

    Beats me. I don't defend the results of either, or CR, I'm just putting it out there for all to see as one more source.
  • thegraduatethegraduate Posts: 9,731
    I read the article where someone else linked it (hint, hint ). Forgive me, but I don't understand how this is very useful. Every car owner would have to be a Warranty Direct client for this to be valid, don't you think?

    Well, respectfully, by that logic, Consumer Reports isn't valid because it doesn't survey EVERY SINGLE OWNER, true? 450,000 is a LOT of vehicles if you ask me, better than some surveys probably report from. Seems like a valid size sample to me.
  • captain2captain2 Posts: 3,971
    The same applies to CR and their little dot ratings system. When a car gets an average rating you dont know if thats because of a high rate of windsheild wiper problems or leaking head gaskets
    not exactly, the CR survey and those survey results do classify failure types within some categories - eg mechanical, body, electrical etc. etc. As such, I regard it as a more accurate indicator of not only overall reliability but also a general idea or possible areas and severity of failures. Pat is right, if a warranty company is simply regurgitating the percentage of claims, we don't know what they are paying to have fixed, and it would also make some sense that the Korean brands would do well, simply because of the extended powertain warranty takes care of those problems and the warranty co. never hears about it.
  • patpat Posts: 10,421
    I never said I thought CR's surveys are statistically accurate - in fact, I'm quite sure I've never commented on that one way or the other. :P

    My point is that there are zillions of car buyers, myself included, who never even thought of paying Warranty Direct for anything. I just think a survey should be statistically accurate and I don't see how a survey of Warranty Direct customers tells anything more than the percentage of Warranty Direct customers who have used what they paid for - no matter the severity/importance of the problem that generated the claim.

    Substitute CR in that statement if you like. But I didn't say that. :blush:
  • thegraduatethegraduate Posts: 9,731
    I never said I thought CR's surveys are statistically accurate - in fact, I'm quite sure I've never commented on that one way or the other

    And you'll notice, I didn't put those words in your mouth, or say that you felt CR was valid, purposefully so. :) My point of saying that was that many people put a lot of stock in CR's reports because of the large number of people sampled.

    I was implying that a survey like this seems as widely sampled as Consumer Reports, so it is likely to be somewhat accurate on problems per manufacturer (although it doesn't say what they are - you dont want them either way). it's not as if someone sampled 500 owners.
  • I personally don't think the lack of a 4 cylinder will matter in the purchase decision for an Aura.
    I think GM is realizing they don't need to have every car in every nitch in every market. They need to have cars where they can be profitable. As they get more efficient as a company, they can look at expanding into more markets.
    Its not about market share, its about profit per car.
  • autonomousautonomous Posts: 1,769
    I'm glad we have the information from this survey but want more, more, more! I agree that Consumer Reports provides more information about the problem areas and is therefore a more useful survey. CR breaks down the information by model (Mazda3, Mazda6, Miata ...) and year. For example, even if Mazda rates among the most troublefree brands, it would be interesting to know what specific trouble spots to check in a 2004 Mazda3 prior to purchase.
  • thegraduatethegraduate Posts: 9,731
    I personally don't think the lack of a 4 cylinder will matter in the purchase decision for an Aura.

    I know I'm just one consumer of a midsize sedan, but it would certainly save me a trip to the Saturn dealer by learning of no 4-cylinder option.
  • captain2captain2 Posts: 3,971
    but if you do want a good idea of how much (not necessarily how often) you might expect to spend keeping a car running relative to a different one, the extended warranty prices will give you a good idea of what to avoid. It could be a combination of frequency and/or parts costs though. In any case, rest assured that Warranty Direct (or whoever), is spending less than what they pay out regardless of what percentage of buyers make claims on their purchase.
  • jeffyscottjeffyscott Posts: 3,855
    The warranty direct data that I linked did break down problem rates by categories such as heating/cooling system, engine, transmission. Not sure this helps all that much as my leaking transmission thingy cover that cost $200 counts the same as your $4000 transmission replacement.

    In the UK data they do weight based on cost. This data shows things like toyota having a low problem rate but the cost per problem is high.

    Edmunds specifically gives anticipated repair costs in their TCO. I have also compared costs of extended warranty from the same source (my credit union) on various models and the prices do vary, but not by as much as people's impressions of reliability differences seems to.

    For example a VW was about $1500 while a Honda was about $1000 for the same warranty. I would not choose one car over another based on a difference of $500 in expected repair costs over 7 years or 100,000 miles.

    What I get out of all these various bits of info is that there is not all that much variation anymore. Particularly when you look at costs rather than rates of problems. With a few exceptions (Jaguar comes to mind) it just does not make all that much difference which car you buy, they are just about all pretty reliable these days.
  • captain2captain2 Posts: 3,971
    and likewise frmom just a financial point of view, if you can assume that a Fusion for example costs half as much to fix as a Toyota (probably an overstatement) but the extended warranty cost is the same - it is also logical to assume that the Fusion must be in the shop twice as much.
  • Its not about market share, its about profit per car.

    How are they going to make profits when they're already starting all the discounting so early into the year? Instead of building 5 mid-sized sedans - Malibu, CTS, Lacrosse, G6, Aura, they should focus their engineering on building 2 kick [non-permissible content removed] cars, one mainstream, one luxury and sell them like hotcakes. Too many product lines means more parts and different factories, etc... higher overheads. There's a huge advantage to streamlining their lineup to the two tier model that's so successful for cars as shown by Toyota/Lexus, Honda/Acura, Nissan/Infiniti.
  • explorerx4explorerx4 Central CTPosts: 13,747
    i'm amazed you would post anything to do with top gear, they don't think much of your state.
    2017 Ford Fusion SE 2017 Ford F-150 Limited
  • jeffyscottjeffyscott Posts: 3,855
    it is also logical to assume that the Fusion must be in the shop twice as much.

    Perhaps, but sometimes you can get multiple things fixed in one trip other times the problems are taken care of during a regular maintenance trip.
  • m1miatam1miata Posts: 4,556
    Toyota parts are not really expensive. Now Volvo and BMW = Whoa!
    I had a Stealth for a few years; Mitsubishi parts are a bit pricey in my view. Expensive though usually falls into the German and Swedish cars realm.
    -Loren
  • m1miatam1miata Posts: 4,556
    The Aura is pretty heavy. The 3.5 V6 is a cheaper option to power the weight, which it does for decent 0-60 of around 7.5 seconds. The four cylinder would not seem right in this particular car. I guess they could turbo the thing. Test drove the 3.6 V6 today, and it is a rocket! Very powerful, and pretty smooth engine. Sounds good too. Adds $4K to the bill, and you get a couple other things, such as stability control.

    I understand the Malibu will have a four cylinder. If the weight is the same as an Aura, less the i4 vs. v6 weigh in difference and it has an automatic, it will not move out too well. The 3.5 is a better choice, and the 3.6 fills the need for speed urge.
    -Loren
  • elroy5elroy5 Posts: 3,741
    while I would agree that reliability is less a concern than it was 10 years ago, when car shopping. The differences in craftsmanship, and refinement, are still very noticeable, and real. My Chevy has been very reliable (at least the problems it does have, I can fix myself), but I still consider it a piece of crap. The engine is not very smooth or powerful. The blinker stalk feels like it's about to fall off (but then it's felt like that for 4 years now). The seats are not comfortable. Not a pleasure to drive. My Accord is smooth, comfortable, solid, and everything works like it should. That is the difference to me, and worth the extra cost, if any IMO.
  • thegraduatethegraduate Posts: 9,731
    i'm amazed you would post anything to do with top gear, they don't think much of your state.

    And I don't think a lot of their country (their food and weather are quite awful, and most people lack any kind of courtesy or kindness that I came into contact with), but I like their program overall. It's pretty funny.
  • I think Top Gear is a great show. And I do agree with most of waht they say, even on Americans. And Ive nvr left North America so hey. ITs a GREAT program, great
  • explorerx4explorerx4 Central CTPosts: 13,747
    i like most of their stuff, too. i just think they went over the line. english soccer fans are not know for their decorum, but i don't see motorweak going over there to agitate them. :)
    2017 Ford Fusion SE 2017 Ford F-150 Limited
  • I personally don't think the lack of a 4 cylinder will matter in the purchase decision for an Aura.

    I know I'm just one consumer of a midsize sedan, but it would certainly save me a trip to the Saturn dealer by learning of no 4-cylinder option.

    Yes but you had no intention of going there anyway and commented on how much you enjoyed your other Accord, so I don't think you were in the market for that vehicle anyway. Very generically, they are all midsized 4dr sedans, but as far as market demographics, they are pretty different.
    It may also be the fuel economy different isn't so great (3-4mpg really isn't going to make a huge difference at 15k/yr).
    If you are one of the folks that like the sound of a 4 cylinder winding out, thats cool, I can totally understand that, but agian, someone who likes rev-happy engine noises isn't the person who is looking for a plush sedan like the Saturn.
  • How are they going to make profits when they're already starting all the discounting so early into the year?

    Its the middle of winter, its slow season. Toyota is offering discounts on the Prius. Its a seasonal thing.

    Some choices are good, the CTS is a RWD performance oriented platform..thats G35/IS250/3-series range. The other FWD mid-sizers seem like the have pretty different tuning and styling to appeal to different markets. Depending on how similar they are underneath, it might not be that huge of an expense with respect to design, engineering and manufacturing costs, but still each one has to be marketed.
  • thegraduatethegraduate Posts: 9,731
    Yes but you had no intention of going there anyway and commented on how much you enjoyed your other Accord, so I don't think you were in the market for that vehicle anyway. Very generically, they are all midsized 4dr sedans, but as far as market demographics, they are pretty different.
    It may also be the fuel economy different isn't so great (3-4mpg really isn't going to make a huge difference at 15k/yr).


    Actually, I tested several models, including a V6 Fusion and a V6 Hyundai that were the same price of my I4 Accord, but I went with the Accord because it was just that good of an engine and had better interior quality. At the time, GM had no offering that came close to the quality of the other compeitors based on my simple auto-show sit-ins. The 2006 Malibu and G6 were pretty sad in comparison with even the Altima, which isn't particularly well-made. Again, one experience, one perception, but that was mine.

    If you are one of the folks that like the sound of a 4 cylinder winding out, thats cool, I can totally understand that, but agian, someone who likes rev-happy engine noises isn't the person who is looking for a plush sedan like the Saturn.

    Actually, having been in several GM pushrods, I can tell you that I felt that the I4 Accord is much smoother and less thrashy at high RPMs than the 3.4 and 3.8L engines on which the 3.5L and 3.9L GM engines come from. I do not know about the 3.5L from the Aura XR, but it is more expensive than 4-cylinder competitor, so I won't go there.

    Anybody heard a Pontiac 3.8L after 5 years (a family from church has a Bonneville which is what I'm referring to)? I swear that "sporty" exhaust note makes the car sound like it is falling apart.
  • ex_tdierex_tdier Posts: 277
    Most reliability surveys dont break down ppv by severity or expense of repair. This isnt unique at all. JD POwers just gives problems per 100 vehicles but there is no additional weight given to "serious" problems. Obviously keeping track of that would make the survey and its results very complex. The same applies to CR and their little dot ratings system. When a car gets an average rating you dont know if thats because of a high rate of windsheild wiper problems or leaking head gaskets

    Even the minor problems can add up to being big problems if there are enough of them. IMO, it comes down to overall quality.
  • rockyleerockylee Wyoming, MichiganPosts: 13,994
    You didn't have the Twin Turbo did you Loren ?

    Rocky
This discussion has been closed.