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Shifty Needs Your Help in Buying a Car

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Comments

  • kyfdxkyfdx Everywhere, USAPosts: 126,124
    4 year warranty... Plus, good re-sale.. It is one of my favorite FWD cars..

    I wasn't suggesting a used one.. :surprise:

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    Edmunds Moderator

  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaPosts: 64,490
    Better idea but still....nope, I'm totally gun-shy of VW. I couldn't do it. I mean have you read some of the VW forums? It's hair-raising!
  • kyfdxkyfdx Everywhere, USAPosts: 126,124
    Yeah... I just can't get past it, though... I like the Jetta, GTI, and Passat.. Heck, if it weren't for the mileage and weight, I'd even like a Touareg!!

    Having owned eight (8) Honda products, I probably won't get one.... but, I can't help wanting one.. :(

    Nothing is worse than the Land Rover Freelander forum, though... :surprise:

    Did you get a good deal? Be sure to come back and share!

    Edmunds Moderator

  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaPosts: 64,490
    VWs drive great. A Passat might be okay but they aren't on my radar.
  • lemmerlemmer Posts: 2,699
    We had a Passat that we bought new. It was a wonderful car, so much nicer to drive than other 4-door midsized sedans. Of course, it always had little things going wrong like the radio wouldn't come on or the turn signals would quit working, etc. We sold it with about 30,000 miles on it and got a Honda.

    My father-in-law also had one that he bought new. He had to replace the entire top half of the engine at around 80K miles.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaPosts: 64,490
    yeah, the sludge monster strikes again.

    I've researched the MINI for tragic flaws and the only one that seems to pop up are motor mounts and maybe some rear spring glitch. With VW you are facing a myriad of hidden coronaries.
  • lemmerlemmer Posts: 2,699
    I've got anecdotal evidence about everything.

    My neighbor just bought a used Cooper S with 60K miles on it. In the first two weeks he had it, it got stuck in limp home mode for no apparent reason and unrelated to this it left a beach ball sized pool of oil underneath it one night. My neighbor said the dealer "replaced some stuff" to fix it. He has no idea what. He loves the car anyway. I drove it and I liked it pretty well.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaPosts: 64,490
    Oh I'd never buy a MINI out of warranty. Therein danger lies. :cry:
  • texasestexases Posts: 8,889
    Shifty, I'm glad you're subject to the same disease that has kept me out of show rooms for years - 'analysis paralysis'. I can come up with good reasons to look at a dozen different cars, which keeps me from buying any. I do have to admit, you threw quite a curve ball in the Mini/C5 switch...
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaPosts: 64,490
    I think as a car enthusiast gets older he can go one of two ways---either he sticks with what he knows, or he decides time is running short for his top driving skills and that he should taste the unusual while he has the chance.

    I spend so much time in a car that this decision might be more important for me than for most others. I've got to weigh things like 4-5 hours of seat time a day (on some days), and 200 miles + a day fuel costs, with other factors like depreciation (important to a small businessman) and fun factor.

    There aren't many cars that fill all these needs!
  • hpmctorquehpmctorque Posts: 4,600
    "...you threw quite a curve ball in the Mini/C5 switch... "

    Yeah, but it's the kind of brand/model hopping that a lot of us car nuts, or to put it more gently, car afficionados, can identify with, I'm sure. I sometimes buy and sell a couple of cars in the same day...in my fantasies, fortunately. Jay Leno does it for real - although maybe he buys and keeps many more than he sells - while many of us just do it in our minds. Can other Edmunds readers identify with this pathology?
  • bumpybumpy Posts: 4,435
    How are you going to haul your junk around in a Corvette or a Corolla? IMO you should get a Protege5 for utility, and a circa-1992 NSX or MR2 for play.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaPosts: 64,490
    I like the NSX a lot but it takes about $30K to buy a really nice one (really nice) and that's a lot of cash for a 15 year old car. Also I might end up on a chain gang in a Vette or NSX....it's this RED MIST that takes over....
  • jrosasmcjrosasmc Posts: 1,711
    Since you are a bona fide enthusiast these are a few cars that came to mind for recommendations:

    1) 2002-07 Subaru Impreza WRX/STi. Good rally-type cars from what I've heard and seen.

    2) 2000-03 Nissan Maxima. If you get the SE model you have a great sports sedan with a top-notch motor (3.0 dual-cam V-6)

    3) 2003-05 Honda Civic Si. These are different from the garden-variety Civics (made in England); I've driven them and they're quite fun, almost Alfa-like.

    4) 2000-05 BMW 3-Series coupes. To some, the pinnacle of driving fun; I'm pretty sure you can find plenty of those in the Bay Area.

    5) 2000-05 Saab 9-5 Aero. Maybe not on your radar, but again, I've driven them and they're pretty quick. Not sure if you want to put up with Saab bugaboos again.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaPosts: 64,490
    Good list.

    STi won't work because it is hideously ugly. Does Subaru even HAVE a styling department? Fun car though!

    Never drove a Maxima or an Si. Hmmm, might be fun to try out.

    BMW 3 series---too troublesome. All my friends have trouble with them as they age. Also too small for me. Very cramped inside.

    I might consider a 5 series however.

    Saab---ditto, way too troublesome, horrible resale.

    I really can't be breaking down. I need a very high standard of reliability.
  • texasestexases Posts: 8,889
    C5- easy, cheap to maintain, but reliable??
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaPosts: 64,490
    Well it's more a matter of how easy it is to fix and how cheap. BMWs are not easy cars to work on, and they cost a lot of money to repair. I'm done laying on my back in a driveway and I'm simply not going to pay $300 bucks a pop for power steering hoses if I can help it.

    So it's either German + warranty, or Japanese w/wo warranty, or American "buy dirt cheap take your chances".
  • texasestexases Posts: 8,889
    Sounds like a plan - a Porsche-owning friend of mine said I'd be happier with a Corvette, given my desire to work on what I owned. He never touched his, became fast friends with his mechanic...
  • bumpybumpy Posts: 4,435
    There is always your fallback choice: Mini Cooper Clubman starts at $20,600.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaPosts: 64,490
    True, true, but did you read the caveat?

    "Of course any self-respecting MINI owner knows that the British Marquee's dozens of options and customizations will raise the average price by thousands of dollars..."

    In reality, this car with just a few options will cost me $23K + t&l so I'm in $25K....for a STATION WAGON!

    As Peter Egan used to say, his only rationale for buying a new car, which he rarely has done (once I think, although his wife buys them) is for how it looks. It has to be so tempting and enthralling that reason goes out the wind. The new MINI did that for me, but I'm not sure the Clubman is as compelling or handsome a design package overall.

    Besides, have you ever met the kind of people who owned the original Travellers? Just a touch eccentric to say the least.

    I'd have to see one up close. I don't need to carry "stuff". I've got a beater for that.
  • bumpybumpy Posts: 4,435
    Unless they make stuff like the steering wheel an "option", you could do okay with the base model IMO. I was thinking you didn't have the space for two cars.
  • roadburnerroadburner Posts: 12,196
    So it's either German + warranty, or Japanese w/wo warranty, or American "buy dirt cheap take your chances".

    I bought a new Mazdaspeed3 in July and I've been very pleased with it. It's fairly practical yet it is a real blast to drive. The MCS handles a bit better, but the Mazdaspeed has a usable rear seat as well as decent cargo space. I'm certainly not ready to give up my Club Sport, but the Mazdaspeed is an entertaining change of pace. Methinks that I'm going to install the Mazdaspeed Cold Air Intake(@25 hp, $300) and take the little beast to a few few track days next summer.

    Mine: 1995 318ti Club Sport; 2014 M235i; 2009 Cooper Clubman; 1999 Wrangler; 1996 Speed Triple Challenge Cup Replica Wife's: 2015 X1 xDrive28i Son's: 2009 328i

  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaPosts: 64,490
    That's a mighty optimistic number for a CAI I must say!

    I drove that car and really liked it. Watch the torque steer on the track though.
  • bumpybumpy Posts: 4,435
    A CAI (freer intake plus colder charge) probably does more for a turbo than a regular n/a engine.
  • roadburnerroadburner Posts: 12,196
    That's a mighty optimistic number for a CAI I must say!

    I thought so too, but I've seen more than a few independent dyno tests that seem to validate that number. Mazda claims that their CAI intake and exhaust together add 30 hp. The dyno information indicates that the exhaust is only responsible for 5-7hp of that increase.

    I drove that car and really liked it. Watch the torque steer on the track though.

    Absolutely. The car rewards smooth control inputs, and slow-in, fast-out is the preferred strategy. Aside from the torque steer, I've been surprised by how neutral and planted the car feels in the corners.

    Mine: 1995 318ti Club Sport; 2014 M235i; 2009 Cooper Clubman; 1999 Wrangler; 1996 Speed Triple Challenge Cup Replica Wife's: 2015 X1 xDrive28i Son's: 2009 328i

  • bumpybumpy Posts: 4,435
    Hyundai Genesis Coupe: compact/midsize RWD starting around $20k for the 215ish hp turbo 4.
  • fintailfintail Posts: 47,955
    What's with that rear window line that dips down? Makes the door look misaligned. More of that "style" from Korean automakers I guess... :confuse:
  • bumpybumpy Posts: 4,435
    Visibility. You can actually see out of it, instead of just having a purely decorative piece of glass behind the B-pillar.
  • fintailfintail Posts: 47,955
    Does it being dipped maybe a couple cm really make a difference in visibility? Couldn't they at least have aligned the door window with it?

    Oh well, I am not saying it is really ugly or anything, just a little odd. It's hard to make a broken line look good.
  • bumpybumpy Posts: 4,435
    It's not so much for the giants among us, but it does keep the bottom of the glass below eye level for shorter drivers. They could have lowered the door glass to make it level, but then the front end of the door would be really awkward. It's a compromise between style and practicality.
This discussion has been closed.