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Best vehicle for $40,000



  • fedlawmanfedlawman Posts: 3,118
    Not if you're talking about two of them... ;)
  • alp8alp8 Posts: 656
    yeah, it belongs in the 30k thread
  • georgekgeorgek Posts: 50
    Not as much fun to drive as a 5 series, and not as much luxury as an E Class or A6, but at well under $40K on the road it's a very attractive car. For a wagon, nothing comes close - VW and Subaru are smaller, Mazda6 has a cheap and nasty interior and is noisy, upscale Germans all cost at least $10-15K more and the Dodge handles like -well, like a Dodge, has very limited cargo space and also is cheap and nasty inside.

    The SAAB is fun to drive, has some of the most comfortable seats around, comes with most goodies standard and gets good mileage. Ona recent round trip from PA to Georgia we averaged 29mpg.
  • ot06ot06 Posts: 1
    I have owned 4 saabs and loved them all. I'm now looking at the Sport Combi (2.0T) and would like it as a manual, to get the best fun out of the drive, but the dealership says they do not have any, nor are they common. Anyone else have these problems? Any suggestions, short of ordering one (which I'm told takes 3 mo for delivery)? Thanks.
  • rx8bearrx8bear Posts: 6
    Without a doubt this is a no brainer!
    The answer is the Mazda RX-8!
    The car handles like a dream,rides good, get's good mlg. for a sports car, and the
    rotary engine just purrs and never complains about being driven hard!
  • ivan_99ivan_99 Posts: 1,681
    get's good mlg. for a sports car

    Were you being humorous…or serious?

    I don’t think anything gets worse mileage than an RX8…they just should have shoved the 2.3T from the MazdaSpeed in there and called it something else.

    With that being said…I was very tempted at the dealership by a black one…
  • dhanleydhanley Posts: 1,531
    18/25 EPA, and people are reporting getting significantly worse. That's really poor for 212 hp . 150lb-ft. and a small car. ( there's an rx-8 MPG topic here )

  • jimmy81jimmy81 Posts: 170
    The most cramped and claustrophobic car I've ever been in.
  • rx8bearrx8bear Posts: 6
    I was dead serious. What kind of mileage do other cars that go 0-60 in under 6 get?
    The fact that you suggested they put a mundane piston engine in the car clearly understand the passion that a rotary engine can engender: there is nothing like driving a Rotary: for those who have grown to love the engine it is the ultimate insult to suggest subsituting a cookie-cutter piston engine.
    Did you drive one? Until you spend some serious time driving a rotary you won't understand what I'm talking about.
  • qbrozenqbrozen Posts: 26,336
    What kind of mileage do other cars that go 0-60 in under 6 get?

    Accord 6-speed = 21/29
    S2000 = 20/26

    350Z = 19/25 (i personally averaged 25 in mine)
    mustang GT = 17/25
    Corvette = 18/26

    So, yeah, if you compare it to much heavier and higher powered cars, like the Z, stang, and vette, the RX8 holds its own ... but that's EPA numbers. I don't think I've ever seen as many complaints about poor mileage compared to EPA estimates as I've seen with the RX8.

    '10 Equinox LS; '08 Charger R/T Daytona; '67 Coronet R/T; '14 Town&Country Limited; '18 BMW X2. 49-car history and counting!

  • ukjimukjim Posts: 63
    I just have to put in my 2c worth. In March I traded in my 2004 RX8 MT for a 2.0 Arc Convertible AT. So I have owned and driven both cars back to back. Performance of the RX8 is far superior to Saab, 238HP vs 210 in a lighter, RWD car, can only be better. Gas mileage is the cost, the best I got in the '8 was 22MPG on a long drive to Boulder City from LA, normal driving got only 18 mpg. I regularly get 26+ in the Saab. I have two kids (10 & 14)and both were able to sit in the back of the'8 comfortably, one of the reasons I bought the car, performance plus the space for 4 normal sized adults. But, the Saab has a much more usable trunk (with the top up)than the '8, is quieter, more comfortable and has better appointments( seat memory, back up system, better heated seats, better A/C etc.)
    Also, the '8 has been plauged with problems, check out the site on Edmonds.
    But having said all that, the cars are so different, have different target markets, provide a different driving experience, that I think it is a futile exercise to compare them head to head. I really enjoyed the Mazda RX8 for what it was, I also love the Saab for what it offers.
  • rx8bearrx8bear Posts: 6
    Who buys a sports car for the gas mileage anyway?
    I mean if you want gas mileage go buy an econobox for gosh sakes!
    Was I saying the RX-8 is the mileage champ: NO!?
    The point is the sheer joy one gets in driving the car!
  • ivan_99ivan_99 Posts: 1,681
    Nope, haven’t driven one. I test drove an RX7 “back in the ol days” and loved it.

    I’ve made a deliberate effort NOT to test drive any cars…have a problem buying when I shouldn’t.

    The dealer where I was servicing my wife’s vehicle had a couple used, low mileage manual RX8’s…very tempting. I do really like the concept of light weight, relatively high power, 2+2 seating…in a very nice design.

    I think the problem I have with the mileage is not specifically the EPA but the real world postings…things like “I never get over 17mpg”; whereas a Honda S2000 has similar power and weight (actually a little lighter) has a 20/26 EPA…but the people I know that own those (don’t know any RX8 owners) say they consistently get mid 20’s for combined driving.

    Cars like the IS350 or 330i get better mileage…but are both kind of fat pigs when comparing curb weight to the RX. Even a corvette, 911 4S, or V8 mustang have similar EPA rankings but crank out the big hp and torque numbers…while having a similar curb weight to the RX.

    When the mileage dips that low…I want neck snapping torque.

    But maybe at that price point the RX8 is one of the better sports cars; it’s not supposed to be a dragster anyway.
  • dhanleydhanley Posts: 1,531
    "Who buys a sports car for the gas mileage anyway? "

    In your argument for buying it, you said it had good power and fuel economy. From my perspective, it doesn't do that well in either category.

    By the way, edmunds says 0-60 on an rx8 is between 6.6-7.0

  • habitat1habitat1 Posts: 4,282
    Who buys a sports car for the gas mileage anyway?

    Agreed. But, just for the record, my previous and current sports cars:

    2002 Honda S2000: 0-60 in 5.5 seconds; overall average 20-22 around town; regularly hit 31-32 mpg highway at 70-75 mph with the top down. The S2000 got considerably better than the 20/26 EPA rating, at least on the highway. And with a 9,000 rpm redline to boot.

    2005 Porsche 911 S Cab: 0-60 in 4.3 seconds; pretty poor mpg around town (15+/-) but averages 25+ mpg on the highway at 70-80+ mph. One 200 mile run at 75 mph came in at 27.3 mpg.

    I think the gripe with the RX8 isn't based upon the belief that sports cars are supposed to rival hybrids in fuel efficiency. But, you should get something in return for gas consumption. The RX8 is well below the S2000 in performance, with the fuel efficiency that is comparable (or worse) than 911S. That's not exactly a hallmark of superior performance engineering - which is important in the realm of sports cars.
  • qbrozenqbrozen Posts: 26,336
    Who buys a sports car for the gas mileage anyway?

    Of course you don't buy one for mileage ... but with so many choices on the market, there is no reason to buy a gas hog when you can get something that performs as good or better, for the same money, that also gets better mileage.

    '10 Equinox LS; '08 Charger R/T Daytona; '67 Coronet R/T; '14 Town&Country Limited; '18 BMW X2. 49-car history and counting!

  • fred222fred222 Posts: 200
    Wasn't there an mpg requirement for this post.
    All those who do make it need not apply.
  • qbrozenqbrozen Posts: 26,336
    considering the topic was started over 5 months ago, I think that guy has moved on by now and actually purchased a vehicle.

    '10 Equinox LS; '08 Charger R/T Daytona; '67 Coronet R/T; '14 Town&Country Limited; '18 BMW X2. 49-car history and counting!

  • dhanleydhanley Posts: 1,531
    I scanned back and see that used vehicles are to be considered as well. That makes the question a lot more tasty.

    A jag dealer near is asking $39K for a certified 2004 xj8, and an xj8 _is_ rated 28mpg highway. Not _exactly_ my kinda car, but a heckova ride for 40K, if not as good as the creme-de-creme of the category

  • alp8alp8 Posts: 656
    nice addition

    (In five years, maybe we can put a Lexus GS450H in here!!!!)

    What about a Toyota Camry Hybrid?

    it would be nice to scroll through the posts, above, and make a list of the recommendations

    I wonder if we'd get a consensus or a majority-pick out of that? (no doubt we wouldn't get a consensus)
  • volvomaxvolvomax Posts: 5,274
    Here are MY recommendations(BTW I'm counting hwy mileage in the 28mpg) Prices are based on the base MSRP.

    Best American Car: Cadillac CTS
    Ok, so it really is an Opel in disguise but that isn't a bad thing. V6 isn't that quick, but the car handles well.

    Best Japanese car, Non Luxury: Mazdaspeed 6.
    Alot less than $40k, fun to drive in a way that Hondas and Toyotas aren't.

    Best Japanese car, Luxury: Lexus IS350
    Almost, but not quite a 3 series. Better styling than Lexus has had, till now. Honorable mention Infiniti G35.

    Best German Car: BMW 325 and 330i
    In alot of ways still the benchmark for spirited driving.
    Priced waaayyyy to much though.

    Best Swedish Car: Volvo S60R.
    Fast, great interior, best seats in the car business
    A little on the porky side, wide turning radius, ricers always want to race you.

    Best British Car: Used Jag S-Type R.

    Best Italian Car: Alfa Romeo 159. Beautiful

    Best French Car: 1955 Citroen DS. Its been all downhill since then.
  • qbrozenqbrozen Posts: 26,336
    What about a Toyota Camry Hybrid?

    certainly a consideration.

    A bit boring for me, personally, though. I really wish for more stickshift hybrids. I think a hybrid doesn't NEED to be boring.

    '10 Equinox LS; '08 Charger R/T Daytona; '67 Coronet R/T; '14 Town&Country Limited; '18 BMW X2. 49-car history and counting!

  • qbrozenqbrozen Posts: 26,336
    Best Italian Car: Alfa Romeo 159. Beautiful

    heck ya!

    I REALLY hope they manage a return to the US. I'd probably opt for whatever serves as the 147 at that time, though.

    '10 Equinox LS; '08 Charger R/T Daytona; '67 Coronet R/T; '14 Town&Country Limited; '18 BMW X2. 49-car history and counting!

  • alp8alp8 Posts: 656
    but I can't afford the GS450H (and it doesn't qualify for the 40K and under parameter...but it will in a few years)

    The Honda Accord hybrid isn't boring (well, except for being an Accord)
  • volvomaxvolvomax Posts: 5,274
    The Honda Accord hybrid isn't boring (well, except for being an Accord)

    The Accord is plenty boring on its own. Next!
  • patpat Posts: 10,421
    get sidetracked on the Accord.

    We're looking for vehicles that cost about $40k ... 'kay?

  • qbrozenqbrozen Posts: 26,336
    pat - well, you do know the accord hybrid is $33,500, right? Add in some dealer installed options and I could get that over $35k easily.

    alp - i've come to the realization that anything that only comes with an automatic is boring. ;)

    '10 Equinox LS; '08 Charger R/T Daytona; '67 Coronet R/T; '14 Town&Country Limited; '18 BMW X2. 49-car history and counting!

  • midnightcowboymidnightcowboy Posts: 1,978
    Mazda RX8 is a terrible car and one almost wreaked me last night. Pullin in front of me at 80 less tha an inch from my door and I had to swerve and brake to avoid a collision. My Accord handled very well, not as good as the S2000 though

    RX8 Lousy mileage, weird looks, so-so power and performance, pretty lousy drivers.

    At $31K S2000 is far superior to the RX8, but then this is a $40K thread. I would go for a BMW330 or a Infiniti M45


  • alp8alp8 Posts: 656
    re the autom,atics

    I hear ya - I have a bad lower back, so driving a stick is not a good everyday exercise for me, unfortunately :-(

    and now that my left shoulder is acting up, I need to steer more with both arms, not just the left. This getting old thing is for the freakin birds!! (but it's better than the alternative)
  • alp8alp8 Posts: 656
    there is another thread for the $30k cars, but I'd say if the car is between 30 and 40, it should be in this thread

    the other thread should be for 30 and less

    but that's just me, makin rules [eyeroll at myself]

    oh, and both threads ask for 4 seats as a basic parameter (so no S2000, though I agree it is a great car at that price point)
  • ukjimukjim Posts: 63
    I guess this was posted just to get a response from RX8 drivers, an interesting idea in a Saab forum. Oh well, I am sure we have all recognized the stupidity in associating a car with a cetain type of driver and then making a broad, sweeping statement regarding the proficiency of all those drivers. To continue that theme I guess this stupidity is a reflection on all "cowboys". Still, it's good to know that an Accord can actually do 80 MPH, did you have a tail wind?
  • patpat Posts: 10,421
    Okay, you're right. I was sorta hung up on the for in the subject, but whoever suggested that this be for up to $40k from $30k makes sense. So I withdraw my comment. :blush: :D
  • volvodan1volvodan1 Posts: 196
    I do not know of anything the CTS has that is related to an Opel. Are you thinking of the Catera? The base V6 isn't the quickest, but the 3.6 is quick.

    Of course I agree with the S60R. Of course you and I may be the only ones with a "Best Swedish Car" category.
  • alp8alp8 Posts: 656
    does an S60R really get 28 mpg?
  • volvomaxvolvomax Posts: 5,274
    Opel had the lead in designing the global platform that the CTS uses.
  • jchan2jchan2 Posts: 4,956
    Aren't most dealers discounting the Accord Hybrid heavily though, due to a lack of interest in a "performance hybrid"?

    Speaking of which, I saw an ad in the paper today featuring 0% financing on Highlanders, including Hybrids.
  • alp8alp8 Posts: 656
    true, so that might put that in the 30k thread and not this one
  • Buick is really offering the public FOUR cars in Lucerne.

    In order of price they are CX-V6,CXL-V6,CXL-V8,and CXS V-8.

    At a STICKER price of $29,995, the CXL-V8 is perhaps the best value.(Yes most people pay LESS than sticker price)

    If you MUST HAVE heated/cooled-8 position seats, with a 280 watt satellite radio,and ultrasonic rear Parking-assist
    then be ready to spend a little more money (3K).

    But this car is about choices,YOURS, and if a person chooses to delete a few toys then that $29,995 Lucerne is A LOT OF CAR FOR THE BUCKS!

    PS: For the next month only an additional $1,500 "Cash- back" is available.
  • habitat1habitat1 Posts: 4,282
    the CXL-V8 is perhaps the best value.

    Sorry, there is no such thing as "best value" in a car that depreciates like a Buick.

    I handled my aunt's estate when she passed away 2 1/2 years ago. She had a 1999 Buick Century, 4 1/2 years old at the time, with 42,000 miles and in very good condition. It was appraised at $2,200. Great that we didn't have to pay much estate tax on it, but a very very sad commentary on GM and Buick.

    At the same time, my 9 year old 1995 Nissan Maxima, with 146,000 miles was appraised at $5,200. When it was 5 years old, with 85,000 miles, I was offered $11,000 on trade in for a new Maxima.

    I'm sure you are going to tell me the Lucerne is a different car and much better than the Century. But show me ONE single Buick model that has as good as or better resale than a Mxaima, Accord, Camry, etc. It has never happened and it never will.
  • dhanleydhanley Posts: 1,531
    Well, i'm just a wee tad skeptical of trade-ins, one dealer might lowball someone on a trade and discount the car, and vice-versa. It's a little hard to compare.

    Of course, the lucerne isn't 40K so it's no really germane to this topic. A CXS does start at 34K, though. Throw on sunroof, alarm, keyless, and it's 36K. A that point an avalon starts to look pretty good, doesn't it?

    I have noticed certified phaeton w8's for sale in the paper for under 40K. Based in the top gear review with clarkson, that might be the best car for 40K, perhaps if you aren't concerned with resale/repair. :)
  • They make many cars so we CAN choose the ONE that we prefer. Simple right? And it's OK!

    I PREFER a quiet ride AND dont want to feel every bump in the road! I don't think that is how you feel, but it's OK!

    I have read several consumer guides cover to cover and when
    the report uses words like firm ride I look elsewhere.

    I did however drive the Toyota Avalon and Hyundai Azera,and
    neither CAME CLOSE to the limo-like ride in Lucerne.

    I DON'T buy a new car to trade it in every 3 years SO,I would rather ENJOY the kind of ride I WANT for 4-5 years of use than be preoccupied about recovering extra bucks 5or6 years later. (Thats a lot of road bumps)

    Buick hopes to sell about 100,000 Lucernes(Replacing Pontiac Bonneville,Buick LeSabre,and Park Ave). This is now their ONLY reasonably-priced Full-Sized car and yet is built at the SAME factory and on the SAME chassis as Caddilac DTS.

    I sincerely wish you well well.

    I soon will be ordering my new Lucerne.

    PS I am thinking your aunt also ENJOYED the car SHE CHOSE
    TO BUY while she drove it.

    I am sure that you now want the "LAST WORD".
  • dhanleydhanley Posts: 1,531
    I haven't driven a lucerne, but i did rent a park avenue about a year ago. It got pretty good fuel economy and was very roomy. However, i didn't think the ride felt very luxury. I got a lot of road noise, and i still felt the potholes, but they'd start the car oscillating. Plus, the interior was Really Awful.

    Compare that with a c-class which is quieter, covers up bumps at least as well, yet doesn't sway at all. I wonder what you'd think if you tested a c280?

    But i hear that the lucerne/lacrosse are much better cars. I will be helping several family members car shop in the upcoming years, and i'll be sure to check into 2-year old ones that my be good deals.

  • Volvo S60R also runs the slalom signficantly faster the the BMW 330 (Ultimate Driving Machine my *ss) despite being a FWD based AWD car. Check the back of R&T.
  • jchan2jchan2 Posts: 4,956
    Everybody has different preferences. Like you absolutely love the Lucerne, but others like the Avalon and Azera.

    Have you considered waiting a year or two to pick up an ex-rental Lucerne cheap? Considering that I see a lot of Lucernes in rental fleets (at least among full sized cars), you might be able to get a good deal on one in a year or two.

    Personally, for $34,000, I will take an Infiniti G35 or Saab 9-3.

    This thread is about the best $40,000 car though, and the Lucerne is not a $40,000 car.
  • patpat Posts: 10,421
    This thread is about the best $40,000 car though, and the Lucerne is not a $40,000 car.

    You are correct. In fairness, it was included in the categories of the topic, but I just removed it. I think we put it in here before we knew the pricing -- whatever we did, it was a mistake.
  • habitat1habitat1 Posts: 4,282
    They make many cars so we CAN choose the ONE that we prefer. Simple right? And it's OK!

    I PREFER a quiet ride AND dont want to feel every bump in the road! I don't think that is how you feel, but it's OK!

    Re-read my post that you are apparently responding to with a disconnected wire or two. I was strictly responding that no car deserves a "best value" moniker when it depreciates like a Buick.

    That's it. No attempt to convert your preference for complete road isolation to something that might be just a tad better in driving dynamics. That IS your choice. But there are plenty of non-Buick options out there for even the most pillowy minded buyers.

    Unless you plan to keep the car 10-12+ years, quit getting giddy over a stupid $1,500 rebate. The difference between Toyota's and Buick's 5 year residual values is AT LEAST 20%. On a $35,000, that's $7,000+ greater resale value in 5 years. If you can turn a $1,500 rebate today into $7,000 in 5 years, I'll send you $150k to turn into $600k and you can keep $100k to buy yourself 3 Buicks.

    In my experience, the actual additional depreciation on the Buick vs. Toyota will be a LOT more than $7,000. You could easily buy a Lexus ES350 or even GS300 for more than $40k and have the actual 5-6 year cost of ownership be less than a $30k Buick. And, by the way, even my 90 year old Aunt would have acknowledged that a Lexus is quieter, smoother and more comfortable ride than a Buick.

    My Aunt bought her Century used at $12,000 for a one and a half year old car with 30,000 miles. That was about half the MSRP of a new one. She simply wanted a car that she could drive no more than 2,000 miles a year that was easy to fix by the local 70 year old mechanic that she had patronized for 40 years. The Century did the trick, but hers was not the typical buyer profile here at Edmunds.

    P.S. I would also suggest that any manufacturer (GM) that routinely has rebates on about 95% of their models at any given time is not providing anybody with a good value. If they would build a quality product, they wouldn't have to rebate the hell out of it and everybody would be better off. Pick up a NADA blue book and read it (and weep) before you take the plunge. Good luck.
  • patpat Posts: 10,421
    We need to drop this line of discussion now and get back to the topic. Sorry for the error, but let's move on. Thanks.
  • alp8alp8 Posts: 656
    I have reviewed this thread as well as the Best Car for $30,000 thread

    if the car can be gotten for under $30K, it belongs in the 30k thread. If it can be bought for between 30 and 40K, it would go in this thread.

    The originator also listed other parameters that the car should meet.

    I think if people want to expand the parameters, they should start their own threads, using those parameters.

    Can you get a Lucerne for under 30K? If not, it belongs here. (I am guessing that a USED Lucerne would be under 30, whereas a new Lucerne would be over 30.)

    It's not that hard to stay on topic when the thread originator lays out such easy ground rules. (this is not a dig at the host)
  • patpat Posts: 10,421
    Most trim levels of the Lucerne are well under $30k. Let's discuss it in other topic you mention, even if it fluctuates above on occasion.
  • thegraduatethegraduate Posts: 9,731
    Is nobody intrested in this topic anymore, or did everyone just forget it was here?
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