What Car is Right For Me? Help Me Choose!



  • jagboyxkrjagboyxkr Member Posts: 53
    I am about to purchase a new car, and I have come down to a choice between a new Jaguar X-Type or a new Audi A4. Which one would you choose and for what reasons? Thanks for your time and effort.
  • wrightgmwrightgm Member Posts: 9
    I have narrowed my choices down to these three and I was wondering about everybody's opinion on these cars.

    Also, would you be a car with manual transmission if you could only test drive an automatic?
  • wrightgmwrightgm Member Posts: 9
    be a = buy a

    "would you buy a car with....."
  • hpulley4hpulley4 Member Posts: 591
    ...or at least reserve the right to ixnay the deal if you don't like it. Cable clutches vs. hydraulic clutches, short or long throw shifters, light or heavy use of bushings in the shifter, short or tall gear spacing, etc. all affect things quite a bit and thus you may or may not like it. The last car I bought I went in thinking stick, but test-drove both and bought the automatic instead. For most people who really want a stick, it is a very personal choice so make sure. Go to another dealer who has a manual in stock if you can.

    That said, the usual short test drive isn't long enough to find out if you like most manual trannies. Try to take a decent long test drive to really get used to the clutch and gears to make sure you like it. Even autos, especially today's auto-adjusting electronic models, take some getting used to. Some buyers go so far as to rent a similar car for a weekend but with new cars like the 2003 Matrix and Corolla you can't do that.
  • claywaterfillclaywaterfill Member Posts: 534
    I answered your question in your original thread in Smart Shopper. Of these three, get the Corolla. Unless you are in your younger 20's, then the Matrix may do for you. IMO, the Matrix is a gimmick. The compact wagon was popular a couple of decades ago, then went away. Apparently it is making a comeback, but will go away again. The compact sedan has been around forever and will never go away. In other words, Matrix=parachute pants (if you are old enough to remember this huge fad--and if you are, then you are out of the Matrix target market). Corolla=tan chinos. Been around forever and not going anywhere. The Sentra seems to have had some problems lately. This current design has had about 3 recalls including a major engine failure recall most recently. However, the Nissan dealer will probably bend over backward to sell you a Sentra. The Toyota dealer will make you bend over because they are not about to "wheel and deal" on either of these hot new cars. Good luck in your decision.
  • lawman1967lawman1967 Member Posts: 314
    Not the pretties, sexiest, fastest or most fun car out there, but for well over 30 years it has always been one of the best.
  • dtownfbdtownfb Member Posts: 2,918
    for my tastes, I would lean towards the Corolla out of the 3. the Matrix/Vibe really intrigue me as well as the rest of the new sports wagon designs. The styling is a bit much for me but really like the concept. Lots of interior space without the penalty of a SUV or minivan. If the styling were a bit mor tame, I would pick the Matrix over the other 3. NOt gimmicky at all, just a sign of things to come.
  • spudmeatspudmeat Member Posts: 7
    I've been looking for an entry level luxury sedan. I'm tired of shifting in heavy traffic so I really appreciate the auto-manual features. Here is what I've tested in the past year:

    Acura TL & TLS - The TLS was semi-fun to drive. Has a lot of features for the price. I found the rear seat room better than the Edmunds review. Some interior looked cheap - especially in beige w/wood. The black and gray looked much better. It keeps getting to the top of my list, but the styling is sooo boring that it keeps falling back off.

    BMW 330i - Great car, few cars drive like a BMW. Rear seat to small. After all the options pushes over $40k and drops way out of the price range.

    Infiniti I30 - A nice luxury car for a dull person who doesn't care about sportyness at all.

    Infiniti G35 - Can't wait to try this one!

    Lexus IS300 - I thought this car handled better than the BMW. I like the styling inside and out except for the back seat and trunk are too small, the rear end looks like it was chopped off, and I hate clear lenses.

    Nissan Altima SE 3.5 - I didn't drive it, but the interior plastic looked so bad and the cloth was fuzzy. I looked like a skinned Chihuahua.

    Nissan Maxima - Interior was the same as the Altima. Go head for the nearest Infiniti dealer.

    Volvo S60 T5 - What an amazing disappointment. I think the turbo was broken. The car was so slow and felt so spongy I couldn't wait to get back to the dealer. The rear seat was the smallest of the bunch.

    These are just my opinions. I hope they help someone.
  • kominskykominsky Member Posts: 850
    Gotta ask... where's the A4? It seems like it would fit into that list neatly. I also test drove most of those cars (no Volvo, no Altima and CL-s instead of TL-s) and found the Audi to be my second favorite car of the bunch.
  • godeacsgodeacs Member Posts: 481
    spudmeat - if you think the interior of the Altima is the same as the Maxima, you need your eyes checked!.....there is simply no comparison, Maxima's interior is so much better. Go to the Infiniti and all you are doing is wasting money - the Maxima is the best bang for the buck....
  • claywaterfillclaywaterfill Member Posts: 534
    spud's mood may have been ruined by the Altima and he may not have liked the Maxima no matter what. I agree--he should go back and give the Maxima a clean slate. Also, he keeps going back to the TL, but goes way again because he does not like the styling. That seems to be the knock on all Honda products. The TL may not be the most exiting looking car in your group, but you know it will run forever and treat you right. Maybe you should just go with it--since you keep coming back to the TL anyway.
  • dtownfbdtownfb Member Posts: 2,918
    I think both Claywater and godeacs are dead on with both of these cars. They both are in the near luxury arena and are "great bang for the buck" cars. Both have nice engines and interiors but won't kill your wallet. The Acura may be boring looking but I'll take boring if the car is ultra reliable.
  • Kirstie_HKirstie_H EdmundsAdministrator Posts: 11,132
    A major midwestern newspaper is interested in speaking with folks who have anecdotes and opinions on rear wheel drive vs. front wheel drive in winter driving conditions.
    We're also looking for people who recently switched one way or the other and what they like/dislike about what they're driving now.
    If you are interested in participating, please provide your city/state of residence and your daytime phone number to [email protected] no later than March 20, 2002.
    Thanks as always,
    Jeannine Fallon
    PR Director


    Need help navigating? [email protected] - or send a private message by clicking on my name.

    Share your vehicle reviews

  • ottawaguyottawaguy Member Posts: 15
    I was reading a few posts back wrt the Forester/Sonata decision and was thinking - wow - there really are people just like me out there...! ;) j/k


    I have some very similar needs, but my choices are quite different.

    We're down to 2 vehicles. One contributing factor is that I get the GM employee discount, so I will buy a new GM, in all probability.

    So - the choices: A Pontiac Grand Prix GT, and a Jimmy/Blazer.

    The factors:

    -We live in a northern part of the world, lots of snow, and the inlaws live on a beef farm. Gotta negotiate some rough terrain getting up their drive after a good dump of the white stuff, but I believe the GP's traction control + snow tires would suffice.

    -Both of us love driving, and have always like the GP - in fact its one of the only cars we both do like...!

    -But, of course, the wife wants to drive a "cool" SUV, which sits high on the road. What's up with that? She would possibly relunctantly settle for the GP, but I'd prefer a more symbiotic decision, so would appreciate any input.

    -other criteria:
    -Size, we're both tall and presently cram ourselves into an old Saturn SC.
    -Power: want enough oomph to keep up with our highway driving ;).
    -Cargo - planning a family, don't want to limit the room for baby, kid paraphanelia, etc..

    I really believe the GP suits our needs, but must admit I do not want to find us limited in a year or 2. But I just don't want to buy a lot more than I need, which the Jimmy/Blazer would be, IMO.

    Points? Opinions? Tips?

  • claywaterfillclaywaterfill Member Posts: 534
    I would get the Grand Prix. If you are planning a family in the near future, get the sedan. A family of three will fit in a GP sedan without any problems. I believe you will be safer in the GP anyway. I don't know about the new Trailblazer, but the previous Chevy Blazer was rated the most dangerous SUV on the road. Every time I read about an overturned vehicle and people are killed, it's an SUV. Whenever I see a vehicle overturned in a ditch, it's an SUV. People have this false sense of security because they think they are safe in an SUV. The fact is that with their high center of gravity and the false sense of security by the driver, they flip very easily. I just read about the guy with the Padres who was killed when his SUV flipped. The Mets had a player die last year when his SUV flipped. A man where I live had his children killed when he ran a red light in his Suburban and he got hit by a bus. I guess he thought he was invincible in the Suburban--know he knows differently. We don't get much snow here in Georgia, but when we do, there are always pictures of things like Grand Cherokees laying sideways in a ditch because the driver falsely thought his truck was built for that environment. For your question, I would get the sedan.
  • godeacsgodeacs Member Posts: 481
    on safety of SUVs. People think they are safer then let down their guard and boom....sense of false security gets you everytime!

    Of course, I've never understood their popularity: expensive, gas hogs, not the easiest thing to drive. IMO, there are far too many on the roads and they adversely impact the safety of others due to their size....
  • sebring95sebring95 Member Posts: 3,241
    I don't really understand why people come here and ask for comparisons between totally different vehicles. I mean, what do you want us to say? The GP handles better than an blazer. The GP is quicker than a blazer. I'm not trying to bust your chops, but you really have to make a decision as to which way you want to go, and then compare. But here's some opinions, at no charge!

    The blazer/jimmy are horrible vehicles. Rattle traps, doors fall off, tranny good for maybe 130K if lucky. The new Trailblazer seems to be a better built vehicle and a better option in your case. It drives alot like a car, pretty low center-of-gravity, good power, lots of room. Not going to get you anywhere off-road, but certainly won't have trouble with snow-covered roads.

    The GP is a pretty nice car. I think some of the "plastic" packages are bit much, and the interior has enough buttons to control a 747, but alot of people must like that. If your Saturn can make it up your in-laws driveway, then I'm sure the GP can. If the saturn doesn't make it, I doubt the GP would. Traction control doesn't get you that far. My in-laws have a killer driveway, and the last time they were SUV shopping, a couple of them couldn't make it up during the test-drive. It takes a real 4X4 with real tires to make it up their drive when it's snowy and you don't want to walk 300 yards with the groceries.

    And I agree, if you really have no need for 4X4 or an SUV, please don't buy one. You're really making life miserable for the folks like me that actually need a vehicle that can cross muddy fields, tow trailers, and get out snowy roads that haven't been plowed/salted. The SUV's/trucks are turning into wimped out minivans with 4-doors and suspensions that can barely get over a curb.
  • black_tulipblack_tulip Member Posts: 438
    "And I agree, if you really have no need for 4X4 or an SUV, please don't buy one. "

    Well, we don't need one but we are about to buy a Toyota Highlander. Why? Because I'd like to see around me for a change. I'm tired of waiting at a stop sign for a right turn because a SUV wanting to make a left turn at the same sign completely blocks my vision to the left. And, I'd like a decent chance of survival if one of these monsters piloted by a cell phone happy person happens to hit me. These things are self perpetuating. Scary.
  • sebring95sebring95 Member Posts: 3,241
    I just hope you bought a FWD model since you didn't need it. That at least sends a message that people want SUV looking vehicles but not 4X4. What's screwy about the whole situation is that the small SUV's that actually have some utility keep getting cancelled. Why? Because everyone wants a minivan that looks like an SUV and makes them feel safe from all the other SUV's. So what does the person that needs utility do? They have to buy a bigger vehicle! In a few years, if you want a real 4X4 system and the ability to tow anything you'll have to buy a heavy duty truck. I have one I use for towing horses, and it weighs over 7000# empty.

    Wouldn't you just love for everyone that currently can get what they need out of a Cherokee, Blazer, or 4runner, to buy Tahoe's, Expeditions, Excursions, or 1-ton trucks? The RX300 won't make it up my in-laws driveway when its snowy, and the last test Car and Driver did on small SUV's, the only ones that could make it through their snow course was the Cherokee and Xterra. That was two out of 11 vehicles that could perform as designed.

    I drive my wifes car alot, and we're looking at getting an A6 for traveling. I'm not going to sit around popping Paxil all day worrying about an SUV plowing into me. There's always vehicles bigger than you regardless of what you're driving. If I'm not in a situation that requires a utility vehice, I'd much rather get down the road at warp speed in an A6 rather than a Jeep or 7000# pickup.

    A couple seconds at an intersection isn't that big of deal when you can drive a superior performing vehicle 99% of the time. I'm not sure how I could ever get along without a truck or SUV with my lifestyle, but if I lived in town and had no need for 4X4, I'd be in a sports car of some sort. It's not like you can't get a helluva car for what I spent on a diesel pickup.
  • black_tulipblack_tulip Member Posts: 438

    I just hope you bought a FWD model since you didn't need it.
    I wanted a V6, and it is extremely hard to find a V6 without AWD. Also, I am very impressed with my A4's AWD. How good is Toyota's system compared to my Audi's, remains to be seen of course.

    There's always vehicles bigger than you regardless of what you're driving
    True. But, if I am in a small car(like my A4), chances are that in a relatively affluent suburban neighborhood, 4 out of 6 cars will have a much larger mass than my car. On the other hand, if I am in a SUV, that number will probably drop to about every 1 in 6 vehicles.

    A couple seconds at an intersection isn't that big of deal ...
    That was just an example. And, it is far more than a couple of seconds because as soon as a SUV makes a turn, another moves in to fill its place. The real problem here is that it is very hard to see in general when you are driving in a sea of SUVs around you. That is a real safety hazard in my opinion.

  • ottawaguyottawaguy Member Posts: 15
    Thanks for your help, sebring ... I think.

    FWIW, I have been comparing sedans and SUVs for 2 years now. My wife and I differ in opinion as to what suits our needs. I thought a site that seems to have a wide range of experience and opinion might be a place to turn for help.

    So, for those who find it neccessary to question my motivation: I am looking for a perspective from sedan owners as to whether their needs that were similar to mine are being met by sedans or if they feel wanting for a higher capacity vehicle. Also, if they experience conditions warranting 4wd and ground clearance similar to mine, and might find a need for an SUV or the like.

    Anyone who has a constructive opinion would be appreciated.
  • merckxmerckx Member Posts: 565
    Here's my take-I just went through it last spring before I bought a Passat and a Catera.
    I had a GM credit card discount I couldn't walk away from. I can't get exicted about either vehicle you mentioned,but how about this...
    Similar,but far better than the Grand Prix is the Olds Intrigue. With all the discounts,you could probably get one for a song. I think it is the best US vehicle GM makes. I have zero interest in SUVs,and it sounds like one would be a poor choice for you. I agree the Blazer is a particularly poor one,though. The Trailblazer seems better...Also,the Tahoe would probably be satisfying. How about a Buick Park Avenue? I bet your Buick dealer is dying to sell one of these.If you want something more youthful,how about a Cadillac CTS? I love my Catera.
  • dtownfbdtownfb Member Posts: 2,918
    I agree. Before settling onthe Grand Prix. Try an Olds Intrigue. Classier car then the GP and about the same price but with much deeper discounts. And I would get either car over the Trailbalzer. Not that I don't think highly of the Trailblazer (I don't) but if youaren't towing anything or traveling off -road, a SUV is not the best way to go. Poor gas mileage, more items to go wrong (4x4 system), handling, etc. are just some of the reasonss I owuld go with the sedan.

    Good luck.
  • claywaterfillclaywaterfill Member Posts: 534
    You want a Highlander to see over the other SUVs in an intersection? You want a Highlander so you can survive a crash? You need an SUV because of the SUVs in your affluent neighborhod? Why in the world are you buying a Highlander? To me, it sounds like you want a Tahoe, Expedition, or Sequoyah. A Highlander will not help you at all against these types.
  • noflakjacketnoflakjacket Member Posts: 7
    I live in so California, commute 40 highway miles to work each day & am debating between these two vehicles. The Jetta appears to be a notch above the Sentra in essentially every category including price, but the frequent mention of poor build quality concerns me. Should the possibility of incessant rattles, squeaks and generally sloppy craftsmanship steer me away from the Jetta? Any insight is appreciated.
  • jrl03182002jrl03182002 Member Posts: 10
    i would like to get some suggestions from anybody if hyundai accent gl is a good choice...
  • mvargo1mvargo1 Member Posts: 298
    The Nissan is going to have much hight reliability than the Jetta. I've had three customers this week looking to get out of late model VW's (two Jetta's one Passat) because of persitant electrical gremlins. Plus in the Long run the Jetta's turbocharged moter is not going to last as long as the Nissan's normally aspirated one.
  • jpelderjpelder Member Posts: 235
    Well, it beats walking, but not by much. You did not say whether it was new or not, so I assume it is a 2002 you are considering.

    I have three friends who all bought new hyundais n the last few years. 2 traded theirs already(Excel and Accent)\, the third (elantra) will very soon. None of the three will buy Hyundai again. Part of that is due to their income (they bought the hyundais just out of college)but they all were dissatisfied.

    As far as the Accents went, nothing major ever went wrong, other than an electrical problem that left one friend stranded for awhile. Most of the problems were of the annoying variety...turn signal switch failure, service lights, oil consumption.

    For all of them, they bought due to the low price, but it really didn't pay off due to how quickly they traded up, and the low resale value. Personally, resale value is not a big deal to me since I like to keep my cars for awhile. But I can't imagine wanting to drive a Hyundai for a long time.

    It may be best to spend a bit more for something nicer and with more resale. Maybe a focus, sentra, civic. Do you prefer a hatch or sedan?
  • jrl03182002jrl03182002 Member Posts: 10
    thank you for responding to my question. yes i'm buying a new one. also, just last night, i decided to buy a 2002 honda civic lx instead. is this a better choice or would you suggest another one?
  • jpelderjpelder Member Posts: 235
    I agree that the Civic is a much better choice. You can't go wrong with civic reliability.

    Do you prefer 2 doors? Something occurred to me as I checked the price of the Civic LX. I just bought a 2002 Alero GX for about the same price.

    I never would have thought of an Alero being in the same price range as the Civic, but the GX with 5 Speed/sport package has an invoice price of about 16,000, minus the current $2002 rebate. That puts it about dead even with the Civic LX. It has the new 2.2 Ecotec engine which is world class smooth.

    Of course, the Alero is more of a sport sedan and will be discontinued after 2004.

    It just depends on what you like best.
  • jrl03182002jrl03182002 Member Posts: 10
    i'm getting a 4-door sedan. i'll check the alero too... btw, what can u say about mazda protege?
  • newcar31newcar31 Member Posts: 3,711
    I have a 2001 Protege ES.

    Roomy interior
    Excellent handling
    Styling (IMO)
    Built in Japan


    Ride (might be a little too stiff for some, but thats a tradeoff I will happily make for the handling)

    Gas Mileage (25-27 city, 28-33 highway. Not bad, but not the best in the class)

    Some would say that they would like more than 130 hp, but I find it more than adequate. The engine has a nice flat torque curve, and it works well when you have a full car. Check out the Mazda Protege forum here at edmunds. The Protege owners here in Edmunds are freaks about their cars. I am too. In fact, the Protege board is consistantly one of the top 10 busiest. I would say that the Protege is definately the "drivers car" of it's class. Car and Driver says: "BMW verve for less than half the price" I would say that's a helluva compliment.
  • jrl03182002jrl03182002 Member Posts: 10
    tnx 4 the message. i'm now in a bind choosing between 2002 honda civic lx and 2002 mazda protege lx. could u give me a fair comparison between the two? i'm planning to buy my car in 30 days and up to now i'm still on the step of choosing the right one. definitely i need a 4 door sedan automatic.
  • newcar31newcar31 Member Posts: 3,711
    Come over to the Protege forum and ask there. There are people there who have owned Civics too.
  • sebring95sebring95 Member Posts: 3,241
    didn't see the new corolla mentioned in any of the above. I think it's a notch above all the others at this point and time. Price is a bit more, but they seem to be within reason. $1500 seems to be the spread between all the small cars with decent options. The resale will be good too. I like the Mazda, but the only reason I see to buy a small car is gas mileage and it's just not that great compared to civic or corolla. The Jetta is a different beast, and if someone's not willing to give up some rattles and possible problems, then they aren't interested in a german vehicle. Like they say, drivers wanted, not whiny commuters.
  • jrl03182002jrl03182002 Member Posts: 10
    tnx 4 d advice also. now u made it more difficult for me to decide. could u give me a fair comparison of all the three sedans... civic, mazda and corolla?
  • frustratedmomfrustratedmom Member Posts: 2
    I am looking for a mid- or full-size sedan for around $10,000. I prefer domestic makes simply because I live in the middle of nowhere and finding parts for and servicing foreign cars is a nightmare here.

    I have considered the Buick Century, Mercury Grand Marquis (I've read some alarming reports about the engine), the Chevy Lumina, etc., but I'm open to all suggestions. I am most interested in reliability (I'm dumping the money trap Pontiac TransSport I've fought with for 7 years) and safety. I do need something that will comfortably seat five (three adults and two growing boys).

    Any help would be appreciated. Thanks.
  • sebring95sebring95 Member Posts: 3,241
    JRL: First of all I'm buying this for an employee who is driving about 250 miles per day. So mpg is a big concern, although I'm not going to stick someone in a metro or super-sub compact. The Corolla and Civic were pretty much no-brainers, but we did look at the Mazda too. However, 31mpg on the highway is rediculous. I've had larger V6 vehicles turn that kind of highway mpg. So the Mazda never made the test-drive list, another reason being the scarcity of dealers around here. The Civic and Corolla are very similar cars, the Corolla feels roomier to me, and is much better looking IMHO. In addition it feels a bit more solid. Power/handling/ride are within the same ballpark, but I think the Corolla was a bit quieter on the highway. My experience between Honda and Toyota leaves Toyota ahead on durability and they do it with less maintenance, (typically).

    The only reason I haven't bought yet is because we were also trying to buy a Celica and can't find one with the options we want. I'm using both sales as an incentive for them to find the Celica we want. The way Toyota builds and options their cars just gets me soooooo mad. I like their vehicles, but they are just so hard to buy sometimes. If they aren't going to make the options available everywhere, they should just not even offer it. Usually it takes a few weeks to get what I want, but this Celica thing has been the worst.

    frustratedmom: The Grand Marquis and Lumina are both pretty reliable vehicles. The Lumina probably a bit more IMHO. They are pretty bland, boring, and rattle-traps though. You can't do much worse than the old Pontiac Transports, so you have no where to go but up! The Chevy Impala is a by far a better vehicle than either choice though. Larger than the Lumina and built much better. Should be able to find one for $12,000 with low miles, or within your price range with 50K or so miles. The Grand Marquis is also rear-wheel drive, which may or may not matter to you. The Century isn't near as big. Go look at in Impala and let us know what you think, it's like night and day compared to the Lumina.
  • oldsman01oldsman01 Member Posts: 1,203
    The Grand Marquis(or Crown vic) should be a decent choice. Also consider a larger FWD GM sedan like a Buick LeSabre, Olds Eighty-Eight,or Pontiac Bonneville from say 93 on. Those seem to hold up very well over the years, are pretty simple and inexpensive to repair(as far as modern cars go), and the 3800 V6 engine is nearly bullet proof.
  • oldsman01oldsman01 Member Posts: 1,203
    My lady friend mentioned she is ready to trade up from her Escort ZX2 and the first car she mentioned was a Civic(typical female response). Needless to say I'm trying to broaden her horizons car wise. Nothing wrong with the Civic except they are EVERYWHERE and have the personality of a Maytag Washer. She is on a limited budget so my type of cars are out, but I did get her 4 different cars to look at. Ford Focus, Oldsmobile Alero, Nissan Altima, and Mazda Protege. The Nissan and Olds would have to be base models as they are a bit pricier. Olds is discounting big time, but I'm not sure about Nissan since the Altima is brand new. Again, I'm not a small car(or 4 cylinder) car fan, but all four of these choices aren't bad. We'll see how she likes them. I like the value of the Olds and the Nissan as they seem to have alot of standard equipment and fairly powerful I4 engines. Too bad she won't consider a stick.
  • jrl03182002jrl03182002 Member Posts: 10
    how about the 2002 hyundai accent gl? any feedback on this car? this is the only car that fits my budget right now.
  • pluto5pluto5 Member Posts: 618
    The later Lumina's ('97 on) are quite solid IMO. '98 is probably better but my '97 is solid and apparently safer than many other sedans, particularly the light weight imports and even many of the larger ones. Parts are generally cheaper and widely available. After 5+ yrs. the only things I've replaced is oil, filter, coolant, battery and radiator hoses (latter two items for preventive maintenance). If you get a base sedan it was probably a rental or other fleet car so the low mileage doesn't necessarily indicate TLC. In my area Enterprise Rental Cars offers many 01 Luminas.
  • gkarggkarg Member Posts: 230
    In regard to the Mercury Grand Marquis... I would steer clear of the early 90's models. The engine (4.6 L - Overhead cam) was a brand new design in 91 for the Towncar and 92 for the G.M.

    My dad retired a 1984 Grand Marquis a couple years ago that had 221,000 miles with hardly any repairs, ever! The engine (5.0 L) still wanted to go, but the body rusted out. That was the best car our family has ever owned.
  • frustratedmomfrustratedmom Member Posts: 2
    Thank you all. We still haven't decided, but you've broadened my horizons.
  • marvelous1marvelous1 Member Posts: 3
    Just drove them all 3 this weekend. Here is my take for what its worth. All were 4cyl

    Camry - Nice car. Liked the lines. Hated the steering wheel. Its built for people below 6' My arms were tired just from the test drive reaching for it. Ran good, rode good. 4cyl was not what I thought it would be.

    Altima - Great Looks. New styling. Steering wheel adjustable up/down and in/out Big win for bigger people. Interior is not as nice as Camry or Accord. 4cyl ran like a champ. Nice in cornering.

    Accord - Nice looking car. Drove great. Smooth 4 cyl. Steering wheel was better than camry but not as good as altima. Exterior is somewhat dated. Interior was nicely dressed.

    My choice was the Altima.
  • newjerseynewjersey Member Posts: 1
    Having a rough time deciding between Acura TL-S, Audi A4 1.8T Quattro and Volkswagen Passat. Need a fun commuter that can also fit my family of 4 when needed. With today's great leases, all three of these are within budget (VW and Acura are about the same money at 36 months - Audi same monthly, though for 48 months). Your thoughts please!
  • oldsman01oldsman01 Member Posts: 1,203
    Don't lease longer than 36 months.
  • kcb2kcb2 Member Posts: 22
    For those of you looking at the Camry, Accord & Altima, I researched sedans for two months before we bought the Maxima. We wanted 4 door, good gas mileage, ABS, no sunroof, no leather, cassette tape and CD player for under 23K. We found it all in the GXE Maxima after looking at the new Altima (no cassette and cheap looking interior), Camry (short seat and my husband is 6'3" so the seats were uncomfortable on a long test drive), Accord EX (had ABS but came with a sunroof which took away head room, and I had some safety concerns after reading about Accord brake failures on the NHTSA web site and the Accord V6 has had some tranny problems.)
    The Maxima has a proven V6 engine that has won awards. It comes standard with Xenon headlights which *really* improve visibility, (seems my 42 year old eyes don't see as well at night as they used to). We also like the auto dim rearview mirror. The car has twice as much HP (255) as our old 93 Accord (125). We were also pleasantly surprised to get 28-29 mpg on a long road trip so we didn't lose anything in gas mileage. We liked the softer ride of the GXE over the SE even though I was able to get quotes for the SE within a $100 of the GXE. The GXE has 16" tires which are cheaper to replace and have a more narrow turning radius (U-turn.) I don't care if the Maxima will be "dated" when it is redesigned next year because I like the Maxima "old" design much better than the new design look of the Altima front grill. There was a $1000 rebate on the Max because the Altima is being pushed by Nissan right now. I found that the GXE was not easy to find. It comes standard with options that you have to really look for to find on an Altima... esp the ABS. This car is great, I wish we could buy two. We paid $22,333 in Atlanta, plus $489 advertising fee, plus 6% sales tax, plus tag & title. After the rebate and a $500 factory to dealer incentive the drive out price was $23,212 which was pretty close to the loaded V6 Altima.
  • godeacsgodeacs Member Posts: 481
    Mmmm, 28-29 mpg seems great BUT are you sure? I own a Max GLE and the trip computer says I get 27 mpg. But in reality I get 23 or so. Seems like everyone gets 4 mpg LESS than what their trip computer says...

    Still a great car and I love mine....
  • oldsman01oldsman01 Member Posts: 1,203
    I'm with you on the Maxi over the overpriced and underpowered Accord and Camry as well as the fast but currently MSRP only Altima. Another good choice for a powerful fun to drive sedan at or near the $23K mark is the Oldsmobile Intrigue. Standard V6, ABS, 16" alloy wheels, as well as the typical power goodies. Can be had with or without sunroof and leather. With current rebates and incentives a nicely loaded one could be had for 23K or even less. And they also include a 5 year 60K full warranty. I have a 2001 model and it is a blast to drive so I just had to get a plug in:) Mileage wise, unless your driving like me(tach at redline every chance I get) you'll get decent mileage. 28-29 mpg is what I averaged on a drive to Chicago last fall.
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