Howdy, Stranger!

It looks like you're new here. If you want to get involved, click one of these buttons!

Economy Sedans (~$16k-$20k)



  • eldainoeldaino Posts: 1,618
    i'v driven the fit sport, auto and that is just entirely untrue. That would insinutate that its slower than the civic hybrid, which at best does it in about 12 seconds.

    Plus the hybrid weighs more, has a small electric motor and has a 1.3.

    I got about 9 seconds. That is still a far cry from 15. Was the car loaded with people stuff and the a/c on full blast? Otherwise its just impossible. OR there is something wrong with the car.

    No stick shift will make a car improve its 0-60 time by 6-7 seconds. Ridiculous.
  • dudleyrdudleyr Posts: 3,469
    Even Consumer Reports (they don't rev the engine before taking off) gets the Fit automatic at 12 seconds to 60 and the manual at 10 seconds.
  • steve333steve333 Posts: 201
    I got it wrong. The article I read mentioned 0-60 in 12 seconds which is still pitiful for anything other than just a city driver. If you got it in 9 seconds I'd be very surprised. Edmunds tested it faster than any review I've seen.

    >Adequate around town, but engine slow to gather speed, so highway on-ramps, most passing maneuvers demand judgement and often foot-to-the-floor throttle application. Assertive use of smooth-shifting manual transmission results in adequate acceleration for most situations. Fit feels notably lazier with automatic: Test automatic Sport took a lengthy 11.4 sec 0-60 mph. Automatic does have handy steering-column shift paddles that help get most from engine.<
  • thegraduatethegraduate Posts: 9,731
    The Auto Fit was tested by C&D at 10.4 Seconds. The Manual did it in 8.7 Seconds.

    Automatic Fit Test

    Manual Fit Test

    From the Manual Test:

    Our little red Fit was the quickest to 60 mph (tied with the Reno) and the quickest in the quarter-mile yet offered the least engine NVH and the second-best observed fuel economy. It came equipped with the most supportive seats, the most expensive-looking interior, an Acura-grade gauge cluster, and the ergonomics of an Accord.

    What truly set the Fit apart was its handling &#151; not a pretense of handling but the real deal, with springs and struts that allowed one gentle rebound and no more, the only car here that felt happy storming the switchbacks. We later confirmed this when the Fit sailed through our lane-change test 6 mph faster than anything else here &#151; faster, in fact, than a Corvette Z06.

    The Fit is not meant to be a hot-rod. It is meant to be a fuel efficient, good-handling, subcompact car. A highway grand tourer it is not (what in this class is that gets 38 MPG?)
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,905
    ... ergonomics of an Accord.

    LOL, that's a good one! Maybe the ergonomics of an Accord that has no seat-height adjuster, no telescopic steering wheel, no dead pedal, and in general an uncomfortable driving position for many people (check out the Fit discussions here in Town Hall for details).

    Not sure how we got into the Fit, but it's not in this category of cars anyway.
  • thegraduatethegraduate Posts: 9,731
    I think it was talking about controls like stereo and HVAC, if i had to guess. The Fit was way too small for my 6'4" frame so I don't know for sure.
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,905

    Biological science which defines relation between workers and their environments; used to define healthy workspace set-ups. Defines equipment such as chairs which are designed to suit the human anatomy and facilitate tasks without injury.

    Correct posture and positioning of the body while at work, rest and play.

    (do "define ergonomic" on google)

    Seems to me they were also talking about the driving position. The HVAC and stereo controls on the Fit are nothing special, IMO. For example, a manual slider for fresh/recirc air. Took me back 20+ years to my '85 Civic when I saw that. Now, the Fit has a nice-looking steering wheel, gauges, and shifter for an inexpensive car, I'll give it those points in the interior.
  • thegraduatethegraduate Posts: 9,731
    Trust me, I find the Civic and Accord to have much better inetiors. For the price increase $3,000 - $10,000, they should! The interior was not the point of the post I was making anyways(which was about an absurd account of 15 second 0-60 times, later corrected by the same poster - the interior comment happened to be included in the quote).
  • steve333steve333 Posts: 201
    The 12 second 0-60 took me back to the '80s too. For 15 grand to boot. Sorry, that car is a freaking rip-off. If it were 12 Grand that would be another story.
  • patpat Posts: 10,421
    Let's get back to the cars in this class. There are plenty of Fit discussions in the Forums if anyone wants to continue.
  • eldainoeldaino Posts: 1,618
    you can get a sport for 16k. Thats enough for me.

    if c/d thought the ergonomics were good, thats them.

    I'm suprised there was no 'but the hyundai accent DOES' after all the things you mentioned the fit doesn't have.

    A lot of the people complaining about the fit in town hall seem to have not been familiar with test driving a vehicle fully before purchasing it. I would know right off the bat if there was not height adjuster and wether i could live with it or not. :blush:
  • eldainoeldaino Posts: 1,618
    oh man back you are on a mission!
  • eldainoeldaino Posts: 1,618
    have you seen what the other cars in the c/d comparo did as far as 0-60 goes? its all in the same ball park. What are you expecting from a car in this price range? 8.7 for a manual is not bad.

    You'd be suprised how many over 10 sec 0-60 cars there are out there for a lot more money.

    Do you know of another amazing 1.5 litre out there? You should tell us about it, and then tell us how much the car it resides in costs. :P
  • Yes, I drove the Elantra. It was a wonderful appliance, but nothing to stir an enthusiast's soul. Most cars today are appliances for driving from point A to point B. The Focus just barely did it for me. The Civic Si is as close as a FWD has come, but the dealers were wanting stupid money for them. The Fit had the handling, but not the power. For a city car, the Fit is almost perfect, but it felt strained at 80, where I spend a lot of my time.

    Have you driven a Miata? It makes you think about cars in a different light. My fiance' drove mine a few times and bought a brand new one. She had been content with her SUV for 10 years, and suddenly could not stand it, and could not bear the thought of driving anything not as precise handling, as direct as a Miata. If it were not for the long trips I have to make, I'd still be driving mine.

    The only thing I've heard of that would melt my miser's heart, so far, is the upcoming BMW 1-series, but I'll have to wait for a used one.

    I look forward to seeing GM's attempt, but I'm not holding my breath. GM does faitly well with mid and full-size cars, but I've been totally unimpressed with their attempts at compacts. The Soltice and Saturn Sky had so much potential, but typical GM design got in the way.

    What I would absolutely LOVE to see, in this age of retro, would be a modern Datsun 510.
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,905
    I am not going to drive a Miata until my kids are all out of the house and I can buy a car just for me. More likely it will be a 3 Series though--a little more practical than a 2-seat convertible.

    Probably the closest modern equivalent to the 510 is the Versa sedan, or maybe (to stay on topic) the Sentra. And fond memories aside, I would wager that the Versa and Sentra are lot better cars than the 510 ever was--in room, safety, performance, comfort & convenience etc.

    I put the Focus in the same appliance category as the Elantra, not so much because of its handling, which is pretty good, but because of its appliance-like looks. To me, the Mazda3 is much more an enthusiast's car than the Focus. Not to say there is anything wrong with a really good appliance--Toyota and Honda have sold millions of cars on that premise over the last few years.
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,905
    oh man back you are on a mission!

    I don't know about that. It is clear however that you are on a mission, one that has nothing to do with talking about cars.
  • eldainoeldaino Posts: 1,618
    HA HA! good comeback. :P

    But i'm not posting the definition of 'ergonomics' to someone who in previous posts has clearly made it obvious he knows what he is talking about.
  • lilengineerboylilengineerboy Posts: 4,116
    I think the Mazda3 is considerably taller and chunkier than the Focus, which is available with the same drivetrain (Focus ST) and in more body configurations. The Focus has a more developed aftermarket at this point as well, making "hop-up" performance parts (shocks, sway bars, LSDs) easier to find.
    For that matter, parts availability and pricing in general may be cheaper for the Focus, even though they are so similar.

    As long as we are discussing these "economy cars," I really don't think there is much economical about a compact or subcompact 16-20k car, especially when you can easily get a midsize (Accord, Fusion, etc) in that price range. It would seem this thread is more about "Premium Compact Cars" more than "Economy Cars."
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,905
    Keep in mind we're talking list prices wrt $16k-20k. One of the reaons I like the Elantra is that it can be had very nicely equipped (ABS, six airbags, AC, power package, 6 speaker stereo) for close to $13k + T&L. As has been noted, the Focus is a great deal, available in the low 'teens. Spectras can be had for the low 'teens also. Even Corollas start at around $13k now. There are a few "premium priced" cars in this class, e.g. Mazda3, Civic, and Jetta, but they offer a lot of car starting at $16-17k, with excellent safety features on the Civic and Jetta. Yes, you can get a mid-sized car like a Fusion, Sonata, Optima, or strippo Accord for that price, or you can get a car like the Elantra Limited with mid-sized room, heated leather, sunroof, and killer sound system. Interesting choice. I prefer the smaller packages myself, although the lower-priced midsized cars offer great value.
  • lilengineerboylilengineerboy Posts: 4,116
    I definitely understand your feelings on size where bigger doesn't always equal better. It just seems that if you are spending more than necessary for a given size, the "economy" part goes away somewhat. Also, some cars are more thrifty than others with respect to fuel and maintenance in this category.
    As you get towards 20k though (Civic EX/SI, Mazda3 2.3 Touring, VW Jetta), you should be able to swing a mid-level Accord (or maybe an EX stick), a V6 Sonata, and maybe a V6 Fusion.
    Like I said, I definitely understand the "smaller car" mentality but if you are spending more than is necessary on it, it looses some "economy."
  • The 510 offered decent performance, sharp handling, almost perfect balance, practical carrying capacity, comfort, and RWD. The Versa and Sentra better it in many areas, but then so do all other cars sold in the US today. The cars sold today though, with a few exceptions, have become moving machines, rather than driving machines. For me, no FWD car can come close to giving me the control that a RWD car has.

    The Mazda3 fails me in that it mutes the connection between driver and the road more than the Focus. Compared to the Miata, the Focus does the same, but not as much as almost every other car in it's class. The Mazda3 is not in the appliance category, but it's closer than the Focus. The connection with the road is what makes a car an enthusiasts car, and not an applaince.

    A car can look like a rocket sled, but if it drives like an appliance, it is. It can look as boring as can be, but if it makes you feel like you are at one with it, then it's an enthusiasts car.
  • lilengineerboylilengineerboy Posts: 4,116
    Depending on what your lifestyle allows, its pretty easy to firm up the ride in the Focus, and aftermarket sway bars may help you feel more connected in transient maneuvers. The downside is that it may move you up to a class you don't like in autocross. Shocks are free in the rules though, so you can always go firmer there.
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,905
    Strange, when I drove the Focus and Mazda3, I felt the Mazda3 offered crisper handling--better connection between the driver and the road, if you will--than the Focus, but the Focus offered a smoother ride. I also greatly preferred the stick shift on the Mazda3--one of the best sticks if not the best in this class, IMO. The Focus' was OK, but I didn't think it was anything special.

    I don't agree at all that the Mazda3 is closer to an appliance than the Focus. And I don't own either one.
  • Keep in mind that I'm talking about the Focus ST, which comes standard with the SVT struts and sway bars. Any other stock Focus will not be as responsive and will have a much smoother ride. If leaving the ST out, then the Mazda3 is the more responsive car of the two.

    Since 2007 is the final year for the ST, at least in 2.3L form, that is a valid point. As mentioned by others though, there is a VERY good aftermarket following for the Focus, so supension upgrades are very easily available, from mild to wild.

    I found the shifters to be about the same.

    I wound up putting a 1mm thicker aftermarket rear bar and stock size Goodyear F1 GS-D3 tires on the stock 16" wheels. The effect from the bar was subtle, but gave me a more neutral balance that I prefer. Light trailbraking will set the car up into a 4-wheel drift. The tires give more adhesion in corners.

    I don't worry about AutoX classes, as I do not do it to compete, just to have fun a few times a year.
  • eldainoeldaino Posts: 1,618
    this is the only place i've ever heard of a focus, even in st form, out-anything a mazda 3.

    I don't think that even the actual svt put out better numbers than the mazda, except when it came to acceleration.
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,905
    How does the ST compare to the Mazdaspeed3 (comparing the top of the line on both cars)? And did you get your ST for $11k? That is a great price for a ST!
  • eldainoeldaino Posts: 1,618
    you cant beat 11k, but there is just no way that it compares on ANY level.

    Avi should check this out! :P
  • I paid $14k for the ST. You can get a base Focus for $11k, which is still a great deal for a new compact car.

    The SVT Focus was a step above the ST, with stiffer springs, wider, stickier tires, and much more power, but due to the torque of the 2.3 in the ST, was not much quicker. I looked at used SVTs, but the ST was not much more, and new.

    The Focus ST does not compare to the MazdaSpeed3. The MS3 has over 100 more horsepower than the Focus ST, wider, stickier tires, and a limited slip differential. It goes for about $10k more, starting out, than the Focus ST though, at typical sales prices. In that price range, I'd be looking at a used BMW 330Ci.
  • sandman46sandman46 Posts: 1,798
    This car has plenty of power and puts a smile on my face whenever I get to drive it. Not to crazy about mazda build quality, as the car just feels old now...and it's an '05 with 28k on the odo.

    The Sandman :(
  • I got my '07 Limitted about 3 weeks ago and am pretty happy with it. However, when I go over a rough road service or a series of road bumps I hear something rattling or loose coming from the front driver's side. I brougtht the car in and they checked and tightened all the suspension bolts but I still hear it. Brought it back and they checked under the dashboard but of course on the way home I still heard the rattle. I am about to bring it back and wonder if someone has any ideas of what to check or possibly has had a similar expeience. It sounds like it is coming from either the engine compartment or possibly in the cowl area.
This discussion has been closed.