Author Topic: Need a new to me car - suggestions please? (no longer might)  (Read 2394 times)

Sibley

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Need a new to me car - suggestions please? (no longer might)
« on: September 28, 2019, 04:09:47 PM »
It rained yesterday. 7 inches or so of rain. As expected, the whole area flooded. My street for a while was especially bad, and my car kinda took a hit. Water got to the top of the hubcaps. In surveying the damage this morning, there's water in the cabin and under the carpet. Have done what I can to dry it out, started the insurance claim, etc. But there's a chance I'll need to replace it.

I don't particularly like/care about cars. I'm good with routine maintenance, but realistically as long as it works and does what I need, I generally don't much care. Car shopping is not a favorite activity. If I could get some specific suggestions on what to get/not get, I'd appreciate it. I currently have a 2013 Ford Focus hatchback.

Criteria:
MAX 5 years old
30+ mgp
Prefer hatchbacks
Generally just me in the car, but when it's more than me it's 4 people total
Kids not a factor
Low maintenance/high reliability. Outside of regular stuff (gas, oil changes, etc) I don't want to have to worry about it.

Budget - up to around $15k, but if you find an exact replica of the 2007 Pontiac Vibe, I'll go up.

So, suggestions of cars for me to look at? (not sure if I'm hoping insurance will fix it or total it)
« Last Edit: October 02, 2019, 10:58:42 AM by Sibley »

AccidentialMustache

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Re: Might need a new to me car - suggestions please?
« Reply #1 on: September 28, 2019, 11:11:25 PM »
We got a Honda Fit over the Toyota Matrix/Pontiac Vibe (same car, different clothes) because we liked the dealer better. Mileage will be 30+ but not by much because they aren't hybrids. For $15k you could get a new one, so make sure if you're going used you aren't shooting yourself in the foot. In the US since 2007, so you should have a range of years and price points availalble.

Prius? Any of regular, the wagon variant, or the city variant (tiny, and that's coming from a fit driver!). Mazda 3? I hated the Nissan Versa (tilt only, not telescoping wheel) but YMMV.

Would a used Nissan Leaf or Chevy Bolt possibly suffice? We found the leaf super uncomfortable to sit in, and I haven't sat in a bolt, but I see used 2017 bolts kissing 20k or as low as 17k. Your maintenance needs will drop considerably, plus no gas. That said if you're parked on the street (kinda implied by the post maybe?), you probably don't have charging infrastructure. Oddly enough the BMW i3 might be worth a thought. I see range-extender versions well under 15k, its a hatch/wagon style. BMW so maintenance may be $$$ but its eletric so that should reduce maintenance. With the range extender it can self-charge the battery as long as it has gas, so if you normally could charge at work, it might work to self-charge on gas at home on the weekened?

Car Jack

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Re: Might need a new to me car - suggestions please?
« Reply #2 on: September 29, 2019, 07:57:29 PM »
Another Ford Focus is a huge bargain.  BUT....  ONLY if it's a manual.  The dual clutch auto is a huge abortion and Ford has replaced tons of them only to have the replacement do the same thing.  Because of this, all Focus values go in the toilet used.  But the manuals are extremely reliable.

Sibley

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Re: Might need a new to me car - suggestions please?
« Reply #3 on: September 30, 2019, 08:02:24 AM »
I park in the street in the summer. I have garage parking for winter (I carefully store everything away so I can get the car in). No charging infrastructure anywhere, so can't do EV.

I don't know how to drive a manual, and no one to teach me. I hear you on the transmission in the Focus, and I'm beyond pissed with Ford because of it. Mine's been functional, but isn't right. I just got a couple recalls on it that I haven't done yet, so was going to have them take yet another crack at the trans at the same time.

The rental is a Nissan Sentra. I hate it, and I've only driven it 2 times so far. I can't get the seat adjusted so I'm comfortable.

I will look at the Prius and the Fit, and will go look at Toyota's version of the Matrix. I know they changed the name. My sister reminded me that the Chevy Cruize came out with a hatchback, and there's a couple of the Cruize's in the family, so I can look at that one.

And if nothing else, I can give up on the hatch.

Sibley

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Re: need a new to me car - suggestions please?
« Reply #4 on: October 02, 2019, 10:58:07 AM »
Update: Allstate has totaled the car. Don't have the number they're proposing yet.

It would have been much easier if this had happened in a week or 2. Ugh.

BikingEngineer

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Re: Need a new to me car - suggestions please? (no longer might)
« Reply #5 on: October 02, 2019, 11:54:33 AM »
The recommendations already given are solid, and I don't have much to add, but if you want to learn manual let me know. I'm down in the south suburbs, have a small manual hatchback, and would be happy to teach you.

RWD

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Re: Need a new to me car - suggestions please? (no longer might)
« Reply #6 on: October 02, 2019, 12:52:31 PM »
Mazda 3, Honda Fit, and Toyota Prius C are all good suggestions. Other good options to look at are the Kia Soul and Scion iM/Toyota Corolla iM.

RWD

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Re: Need a new to me car - suggestions please? (no longer might)
« Reply #7 on: October 02, 2019, 01:07:38 PM »
I should also mention that the Scion iM / Toyota Corolla iM is the direct successor to the Toyota Matrix (Pontiac Vibe) and is probably the closest thing you'll find to a new version of your old car.

ModelFuel EconomyCargo SpaceLengthPowerWeight
2007 Pontiac Vibe25/31 mpg19.3 cu ft171.9 in126 hp2700 lb
2016 Scion iM28/36 mpg20.8 cu ft170.5 in137 hp3031 lb

It's not quite as tall as the Vibe (7 inches shorter) so you lose an inch of headroom in the front and two inches for the rear seats. Presumably it has a little less legroom for the rear seats as well, but looking at pictures I don't see much of a difference.

Sibley

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Re: Need a new to me car - suggestions please? (no longer might)
« Reply #8 on: October 02, 2019, 01:39:17 PM »
RWD, this helps a lot. Thanks. I've got a list of vehicles to check out, which really makes things easier for me!

Auldtriangle8

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Re: Might need a new to me car - suggestions please?
« Reply #9 on: October 02, 2019, 01:53:56 PM »
Another Ford Focus is a huge bargain.  BUT....  ONLY if it's a manual.  The dual clutch auto is a huge abortion and Ford has replaced tons of them only to have the replacement do the same thing.  Because of this, all Focus values go in the toilet used.  But the manuals are extremely reliable.

I can vouch for this personally. Last year I bought a 2013 Ford Focus automatic and I could feel the clutch slipping when I bought it. I still bought it since the deal was too good (cost of car plus transmission repair was still cheaper than KBB). Sure enough, about 3 months later my transmission died. The clutch plate needed to be replaced. I knew when I bought the car that Ford had given an extra warranty on these transmissions because of so many issues to 7 years / 100,000 miles. Thankfully mine was just under both so the full cost of the transmission repair was free to me. But I wouldn't buy an automatic version of this car unless the deal was too good to pass up.

My friend has the manual version, same year 2013. It's been great to him, no issues. Other than the transmission my Focus has been great.


Sibley

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Re: Need a new to me car - suggestions please? (no longer might)
« Reply #10 on: October 02, 2019, 06:30:54 PM »
List I'm working with at the moment:
2016 Scion iM
Mazda 3
Honda Fit
Prius
Kia Soul
Toyota Corolla iM
Chevy Cruse
Honda Civic
Toyota Corolla

(You note that the Focus isn't on the list.)

Auldtriangle8

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Re: Need a new to me car - suggestions please? (no longer might)
« Reply #11 on: October 03, 2019, 02:48:41 PM »
@Sibley your list looks great! I didn't know anything about the Scion/Toyota iM cars (thanks @RWD) but I did some reading today. Looks like the Corolla iM is being replaced by the Corolla hatchback (https://www.autotrader.com/car-reviews/2019-toyota-corolla-hatchback-vs-2018-toyota-corolla-im-whats-difference-281474979898520).

I personally buy used (7+ years old) cars but the 2019 Corolla hatchback seems to have some nice things compared to the Corolla iM. It has 31 more horsepower (137hp vs 168hp) while still getting better gas mileage 28city/36highway vs 32city/42highway. Something to think about if you were thinking about a 2017-2018 Corolla iM. But they may be discounted a lot and still be good value, it just depends on the price.

RWD

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Re: Need a new to me car - suggestions please? (no longer might)
« Reply #12 on: October 03, 2019, 03:14:45 PM »
Looks like the Corolla iM is being replaced by the Corolla hatchback.

Table updated with Corolla Hatchback added:
ModelFuel EconomyCargo SpaceLengthPowerWeight
2007 Pontiac Vibe25/31 mpg19.3 cu ft171.9 in126 hp2700 lb
2016 Scion iM28/36 mpg20.8 cu ft170.5 in137 hp3031 lb
2019 Toyota Corolla Hatchback32/42 mpg17.8 cu ft172.0 in168 hp3060 lb

The Corolla Hatchback loses yet more front head room and rear leg room. The rear leg room figure is the same as my BRZ which literally will only fit amputees in the back in my normal driver's seat position (I'm ~6 feet tall). Raw figures can be misleading though, you'd definitely want to confirm that the rear seats are livable for your purposes.

ModelFront headroomRear headroomRear legroom
2007 Pontiac Vibe40.6 in39.8 in36.3 in
2016 Scion iM39.7 in37.5 in32.7 in
2019 Toyota Corolla Hatchback38.4 in37.6 in29.9 in

The median 2016 Scion iM price on Autotrader is under $14k. A 2019 Corolla Hatchback is $21-26k.

AccidentialMustache

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Re: Need a new to me car - suggestions please? (no longer might)
« Reply #13 on: October 03, 2019, 05:12:31 PM »
The other reason we have the Fit is because it passed the "I can sit behind myself" test. If that matters to you, it is the best car we found for that metric. I put the drivers seat all the way back in the Fit (which is my driving position -- I'm leggy), and I can still sit behind it. It isn't spacious, but I can do it without kneeing the driver's seat. I'm just under 6' without shoes.

We dumped most nissans because they were uncomfy to sit in. They also tended not to have telescoping steering wheels, back when we were looking (2k9) which wasn't helping matters.

I'll admit I'm not sure about the Fit's position in Honda's lineup with the newer Civic hatches. You get the hatch (but its a sedan hatch, not a wagon hatch) and way better mileage for about the same price... feels like a hard sell for the Fit if you're buying new.

Oh, also, if you love cupholders, the Fit will spoil you. Every time I get a rental for work I'm always like, "there's only two cup holders up front? Really? I'm used to six!"

Dave1442397

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Re: Need a new to me car - suggestions please? (no longer might)
« Reply #14 on: October 04, 2019, 06:29:19 AM »
List I'm working with at the moment:
2016 Scion iM
Mazda 3
Honda Fit
Prius
Kia Soul
Toyota Corolla iM
Chevy Cruse
Honda Civic
Toyota Corolla

(You note that the Focus isn't on the list.)

Take the Chevy Cruze off the list too. Those cars are junk compared to the others on your list.

Sibley

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Re: Need a new to me car - suggestions please? (no longer might)
« Reply #15 on: October 04, 2019, 09:14:33 AM »
Went to 4 dealerships last night just to look at cars, no test drives yet. Chevy, Honda, Kia, Toyota.

Cruize - off by default since there's none left in the region, and I've driven them before and didn't really like them (sister and parents each had one). I sit weird in them.
Kia Soul - I just didn't like the car. At all. And the dealership needs a figurative shower with lots of strong soap.
Toyotas:
  Corolla iM - they made the design "cool" and destroyed the original practicality.
  Corolla (sedan) - not bad, but I prefer hatchback
  Scion im - they had one in stock. I really liked the car, but that one needs a new windshield and they're asking way too much for a car with a 2 foot crack in the front windshield. So if I went with this, would need to find other vehicles.
  Prius - Just not a fan of the design, have driven earlier models and not wild about them.
Honda Civic (hatchback) - ok. Will test drive. More "cool" design, but not as bad as the Corolla iM.
Honda Fit - I liked this car the best so far. Truly impressive cargo space when you put the back seats down. Will test drive.

And why do the Honda's all look like stormtrooper helmets from the front?

Mazda 3 - haven't seen yet, maybe tonight or tomorrow depending on timing.

Next week hoping to do some test drives after work. Allstate will pay for the rental until the 11th, after which I have to pay. I'm out of town weekend of the 12th, so will buy either next week or the 14th (whatever I pick).

Allstate also sent their settlement offer, and based on my research its a fair number. It's the upper end of the range I'd seen actually, so am accepting it. They did extend the rental a day too. Money's on the way.

Spitfire

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Re: Need a new to me car - suggestions please? (no longer might)
« Reply #16 on: October 04, 2019, 11:33:45 AM »
I recently got a 2016 civic EX-T. I find it to be one of the more fun to drive cars that get good gas mileage. I'm not sure how much different the lower LX model drives.

RetiredAt63

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Re: Need a new to me car - suggestions please? (no longer might)
« Reply #17 on: October 04, 2019, 03:36:44 PM »
I'm still driving my 2010 Mazda3 sport hatchback (2.4 l engine, not 2.0) with over 280,000 km. Back leg room is not great, but it holds lots and gets decent gas mileage. I haven't driven any newer models.

Lanthiriel

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Re: Need a new to me car - suggestions please? (no longer might)
« Reply #18 on: October 04, 2019, 04:00:52 PM »
FWIW, I had almost the exact same criteria that you had and I bought a 2018 Honda Fit last year. It's a great little car. Zero complaints. Out the door for $18,600 with 0.9% financing (practically free money).

I had the same experience driving the Kia Soul. It was just... not great. I've driven some of their sedans before and they were fine, but that boxy little Soul was zero fun.

Tester

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Re: Need a new to me car - suggestions please? (no longer might)
« Reply #19 on: October 04, 2019, 04:35:24 PM »
Look at Ford Cmax. It has a different transmission which does not have those problems.
Should tick the boxes.

About the dual clutch transmission on the Fords, I hate that they messed it.
I liked how it felt like a manual.
But then it started to fail...had it replaced and then sold the car...2 year old car.

Coming back to you - give Ford Cmax a test drive, you have nothing to lose
That will most likely be my next car after current Odyssey dies.

Sibley

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Re: Need a new to me car - suggestions please? (no longer might)
« Reply #20 on: October 04, 2019, 09:21:35 PM »
Went to the Mazda dealership. Mazda 3 - the back leg room?!? Just don't put seats back there, there is no leg room! And I sat in the car and couldn't see out the front windshield. Did a full adjustment on the seat to see if that took care of it, and I don't think I can safely drive that car. Something about the configuration of the dash and seat. I just can't see. So, that's out. They have another something-3 car which was interesting, so if I strike out on other options might revisit that one.

Also, ticking boxes, I did prequal for financing. Haven't decided if I'm pulling investments to cover whatever cash shortfall I have or if I'll do a loan, so prepping for both options. Need to do the math. (Yes, I could pay cash, but rate of return vs. interest rate....)

MAYBE will have time tomorrow to go do a test drive. Maybe. My timing is looking kinda ugly overall, so might have to wait for Monday.

Dave1442397

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Re: Need a new to me car - suggestions please? (no longer might)
« Reply #21 on: October 05, 2019, 10:09:40 AM »
Look at Ford Cmax. It has a different transmission which does not have those problems.
Should tick the boxes.

About the dual clutch transmission on the Fords, I hate that they messed it.
I liked how it felt like a manual.
But then it started to fail...had it replaced and then sold the car...2 year old car.

Coming back to you - give Ford Cmax a test drive, you have nothing to lose
That will most likely be my next car after current Odyssey dies.

With Fords, watch out for the engines with the water pump inside the engine.

https://www.carcomplaints.com/news/2018/ford-water-pump-class-action-lawsuit.shtml

RetiredAt63

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Re: Need a new to me car - suggestions please? (no longer might)
« Reply #22 on: October 05, 2019, 07:21:38 PM »
Went to the Mazda dealership. Mazda 3 - the back leg room?!? Just don't put seats back there, there is no leg room! And I sat in the car and couldn't see out the front windshield. Did a full adjustment on the seat to see if that took care of it, and I don't think I can safely drive that car. Something about the configuration of the dash and seat. I just can't see. So, that's out. They have another something-3 car which was interesting, so if I strike out on other options might revisit that one.

Also, ticking boxes, I did prequal for financing. Haven't decided if I'm pulling investments to cover whatever cash shortfall I have or if I'll do a loan, so prepping for both options. Need to do the math. (Yes, I could pay cash, but rate of return vs. interest rate....)

MAYBE will have time tomorrow to go do a test drive. Maybe. My timing is looking kinda ugly overall, so might have to wait for Monday.

So the leg room is worse than mine, even. I bought the Mazda because I had better visibility than with Honda and Toyota.  I'll  take another look at them whenever I need to replace this car.  Not for a few years yet, I hope.

Sibley

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Re: Need a new to me car - suggestions please? (no longer might)
« Reply #23 on: October 05, 2019, 07:29:58 PM »
So the leg room is worse than mine, even. I bought the Mazda because I had better visibility than with Honda and Toyota.  I'll  take another look at them whenever I need to replace this car.  Not for a few years yet, I hope.

I'm guessing you're taller than me, or they redesigned the car quite a bit.

Didn't get out to the dealership today. Will try for Monday after work.

RetiredAt63

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Re: Need a new to me car - suggestions please? (no longer might)
« Reply #24 on: October 06, 2019, 06:56:37 AM »
So the leg room is worse than mine, even. I bought the Mazda because I had better visibility than with Honda and Toyota.  I'll  take another look at them whenever I need to replace this car.  Not for a few years yet, I hope.

I'm guessing you're taller than me, or they redesigned the car quite a bit.

Didn't get out to the dealership today. Will try for Monday after work.

I'm 5'5" with short legs, I move the driver's seat forward a fair bit.  The new Mazda3s look bigger, I'm  sure they have changed since I got mine.  I'm following your car decisions with interest since I expect to be doing the same search in a few years.

Sibley

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Re: Need a new to me car - suggestions please? (no longer might)
« Reply #25 on: October 06, 2019, 03:31:05 PM »
So the leg room is worse than mine, even. I bought the Mazda because I had better visibility than with Honda and Toyota.  I'll  take another look at them whenever I need to replace this car.  Not for a few years yet, I hope.

I'm guessing you're taller than me, or they redesigned the car quite a bit.

Didn't get out to the dealership today. Will try for Monday after work.

I'm 5'5" with short legs, I move the driver's seat forward a fair bit.  The new Mazda3s look bigger, I'm  sure they have changed since I got mine.  I'm following your car decisions with interest since I expect to be doing the same search in a few years.

I'm 5'3", average. Your torso is probably longer than mine, which makes the difference. The Mazda 3-with letters in the name is more like a crossover suv, that one would have been fine for me to see. It cost more too.

Unless I dislike the Fit driving it, I'll probably get that one. And new as well - the used numbers really aren't that much different.

AccidentialMustache

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Re: Need a new to me car - suggestions please? (no longer might)
« Reply #26 on: October 06, 2019, 09:49:15 PM »
I would assess you are unlikely to dislike driving the Fit. Its way more fun to drive than a car of that price point has any right to be. I didn't understand "liking" driving until we got the Fit. YMMV of course. DW thinks "its a car" so liking it isn't universal, even in my house.

Things I <3 --

* U-turns in wide 2-lane or narrow 3-lane roads: totally doable.
* Parallel parking? I can do it right... but why? Just pull in. Half the time you'll have done a better job without doing any further correction than the other cars on the road. Wiggle to fix if you feel the need.
* Cramming "inappropriate" objects in it. Adult bicycle without removing wheels? Check. 8' christmas tree and two adults? Check. 55" tv? Check. Assembled electronic drum kit (rigged for rockband 3)? Check.

Things I don't love --

* It is low slung, so its easy to scrape on steep driveways. We have store parking lots around here with driveways I can scrape on unless I ease one side on/off first.
* It is econobox noisy at highway speeds, compared to fancier vehicles I've had as rentals for work, or riding in a friend's model 3.
* It doesn't love hills. We vacationed in WI and I learned to get very active with the "shift down" paddle shifter just as we hit a hill. Cruise will otherwise lose ~5 mph before it figures stuff out, which is annoying, and/or if I hit the paddle too late it'd double-shift down and rev way up and be noisy and annoying that way. (... mostly I just switched to sport mode and paddle-shift myself instead. Newer models may be smarter (I hope).)

One comment I'd give -- get one with stability control -- that stuff is worth its weight in gold. We ended up with top-trim to get stability control and it was worth it. Its made a number of bad snow storms in IL "no big deal" for us. I don't know that it ever specifically pulled our bacon out of the fire, but it makes driving in bad conditions much less stressful. It became required in 2012 I think, so any trim on a 2013 or later should have it, or the top trim from earlier models.

Sibley

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Re: Need a new to me car - suggestions please? (no longer might)
« Reply #27 on: October 07, 2019, 07:41:15 AM »
Will make sure it has stability control, thanks. I used to have a Pontiac Vibe, so if its similar to that (and I think it is), I'm ok with it. I can never tell how fast I'm going in the smoother cars.

I do need to figure out the invoice cost, or close enough. Tips?

35andFI

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Re: Need a new to me car - suggestions please? (no longer might)
« Reply #28 on: October 07, 2019, 07:52:07 AM »
Another vote for the Fit here. I love my 2nd gen (2011).

Not saying this is or isn't the way to do it but I just used KBB to see what the car was worth and offered them that price out the door.
This way I'm not taking a hit right off the bat and could theoretically sell it for what I bought it for the next day if I so chose to.

Ended up getting a 2011 Fit Sport w/ auto trans and 27k miles for $10,800 OTD.
I bought the car 2 years ago, now have ~60k miles on it, and absolutely love it.

I put a trailer hitch and some roof racks on it which lower the MPG but I still average low to mid 30's.

OzzieandHarriet

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Re: Need a new to me car - suggestions please? (no longer might)
« Reply #29 on: October 07, 2019, 10:23:19 AM »
I bought a new Fit (Sport package, MT) in 2013. Total cost OTD (all fees and taxes, minus small trade-in for my -very- old car), about  $17,500. I probably got ripped off a tiny bit, but I couldnít find a used one for much less. Mine was straight off the boat from Japan.

Itís fine. The size is very good; it holds just about anything and can seat up to four passengers with ample leg room. Gas mileage is usually about 34, less for more stop-and-go driving. The only thing Iíve had trouble with is the tires and sensors - the sensors are pretty delicate and expensive to replace. Iíve picked up a couple of roofing nails that destroyed two of them.

35andFI

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Re: Need a new to me car - suggestions please? (no longer might)
« Reply #30 on: October 07, 2019, 10:43:41 AM »
the sensors are pretty delicate and expensive to replace. Iíve picked up a couple of roofing nails that destroyed two of them.

My TPMS light has been on since the day that I bought the Fit. It's not worth the money (to me) to replace them.
The only functional thing that I'm giving up is being able to turn traction control off.

Sibley

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Re: Need a new to me car - suggestions please? (no longer might)
« Reply #31 on: October 07, 2019, 03:02:03 PM »
I don't think I've ever turned off traction control in any of my vehicles, so that's ok. I did used to have to turn off the airbag in the passenger seat, but that's no longer a factor.

Assuming I like it driving, I would get a new one. I looked at used options, and price difference is not significant enough to bother with the hassle/not get my preferred color unless I went much older than I want (2016 is the oldest I'd consider given my non-mechanical status).

Yes, color is important. Please note that I wait until the end to consider it though.

AccidentialMustache

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Re: Need a new to me car - suggestions please? (no longer might)
« Reply #32 on: October 07, 2019, 06:33:26 PM »
Back when we bought, there were only 3 configurations. Base, Sport, Sport w/navi (and traction control). We got the latter. Then you could choose color and that was it. It made it really easy to get internet quotes from Chicagoland (I have a 630 area code cell, which may have helped?) and then ask my local dealer to match. Local dealer actually beat the Chicago quotes, which I wasn't expecting. I want to say the car base price was ~18k. Sticker was ~21k, so it was a fair chunk off sticker.

YMMV. You should be able to apply a similar technique. If you have a set of colors you'd accept, that'll ease your plans. Heck, you can quote colors you don't like and bluff for the one you do.

Going with an older one, especially low mileage you aren't *likely* to have bad mechanical issues. Our 2k9 is running fine still. That said, it did have to have the traction control computer replaced when it was 3.5 years old. Out of warranty by age not by miles. Honda's regional manager picked up most of the tab for that -- and it was a big tab. I want to say a quote of 2k and we paid $100, they covered the rest. Modulo that no big ticket items. I think the A/C needs work, but its a 10 year old car so that's not bad considering the age.

Sibley

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Re: Need a new to me car - suggestions please? (no longer might)
« Reply #33 on: October 07, 2019, 07:58:24 PM »
Getting the Honda Fit.

I do not like the negotiation phase, but I will survive it. :(

35andFI

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Re: Need a new to me car - suggestions please? (no longer might)
« Reply #34 on: October 08, 2019, 06:07:04 AM »
Great choice on going with the Honda Fit! I'm not familiar with the gen 3 but if it's anything like my gen 2, I don't think you can go wrong.

I would still consider a slightly used one over brand new but you can lessen the financial impact if you drive this one for the next 15+ years.

Enjoy!

Bird In Hand

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Re: Need a new to me car - suggestions please? (no longer might)
« Reply #35 on: October 08, 2019, 06:27:24 AM »
Getting the Honda Fit.

I do not like the negotiation phase, but I will survive it. :(

You could use TrueCar or something like that to avoid the negotiation part and still get a pretty good price.

It's probably too late, but if not...I suggest you consider a manual.  Generally more reliable than CVT, MT models are usually cheaper, it's possible to get superior MPG with good hypermiling techniques, and it's so much more fun to drive.  Don't know how to drive a manual?  It's really not difficult to get started if you have someone nearby willing to teach you.  With a good teacher, you can learn in < 1 hour.

The hardest part is actually finding a MT version of the car you want.  Fit has an available MT, but as I discovered when shopping recently, there were none within 200 miles of where I live. :(

RWD

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Re: Need a new to me car - suggestions please? (no longer might)
« Reply #36 on: October 08, 2019, 07:21:33 AM »
A solid choice. I am impressed that you went and test drove the suggestions from this thread and found which one worked best for you. I think this is a forum first. Usually people asking for car advice already know what they want and won't consider other options or never report back on what they decided.

Sibley

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Re: Need a new to me car - suggestions please? (no longer might)
« Reply #37 on: October 08, 2019, 08:03:48 AM »
A solid choice. I am impressed that you went and test drove the suggestions from this thread and found which one worked best for you. I think this is a forum first. Usually people asking for car advice already know what they want and won't consider other options or never report back on what they decided.

I crowdsourced my vehicle research. The forum and Facebook each got the same question. I got lists of vehicles from each (with impressive overlap) and looked at each option. I hate car shopping, I really didn't want to waste time on car research when all it'd do is make me crabby. Pure practicality.


OzzieandHarriet

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Re: Need a new to me car - suggestions please? (no longer might)
« Reply #38 on: October 08, 2019, 01:32:25 PM »
Getting the Honda Fit.

I do not like the negotiation phase, but I will survive it. :(

You could use TrueCar or something like that to avoid the negotiation part and still get a pretty good price.

It's probably too late, but if not...I suggest you consider a manual.  Generally more reliable than CVT, MT models are usually cheaper, it's possible to get superior MPG with good hypermiling techniques, and it's so much more fun to drive.  Don't know how to drive a manual?  It's really not difficult to get started if you have someone nearby willing to teach you.  With a good teacher, you can learn in < 1 hour.

The hardest part is actually finding a MT version of the car you want.  Fit has an available MT, but as I discovered when shopping recently, there were none within 200 miles of where I live. :(

I had to wait a few weeks for one with MT to come in. The dealer near me did have one but it was black, and I really didnít want a black car.

The worst part of the experience was the extended warranty spiel because the guy was so insulting. If I hadnít wanted the car as much as I did I would have walked out. I probably should have bought it because it was only $1,000 by the end of the pitch, but after he called me ďstupidĒ there was no way ...

Bird In Hand

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Re: Need a new to me car - suggestions please? (no longer might)
« Reply #39 on: October 08, 2019, 02:15:27 PM »
I had to wait a few weeks for one with MT to come in. The dealer near me did have one but it was black, and I really didnít want a black car.

So frustrating!  At least you got one in a few weeks.  When I asked my Honda dealer about getting one, they said it would be a special order and would take 2-3 months.

Quote
The worst part of the experience was the extended warranty spiel because the guy was so insulting. If I hadnít wanted the car as much as I did I would have walked out. I probably should have bought it because it was only $1,000 by the end of the pitch, but after he called me ďstupidĒ there was no way ...

Ugh, that's ridiculous.  Wary of experiences like this (which I've had before, but at least they never insulted me like that), I arranged the terms -- everything except the price -- before I ever set a foot in the dealership.  It took several e-mails back and forth with the Internet Sales person, but I managed to convey that I would not be buying the car if they tried to sell me anything other than the car itself.  It worked.  At closing, the finance guy just said "Sign here indicating that we offered you these items but that you didn't want them."  He was really cool about it, and I definitely appreciated that!
« Last Edit: October 08, 2019, 02:18:02 PM by Bird In Hand »

Sibley

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Re: Need a new to me car - suggestions please? (no longer might)
« Reply #40 on: October 09, 2019, 07:28:05 PM »
Welp, I bought the new car. Honda Fit. Didn't realize it, but some of the dash controls are old-school mechanical, not electronic. I like that :) The dealership was not as bad as others have been, so that was nice.

Now updating all my tracking. I decided to finance it based on interest rate vs. investment returns math.

RWD

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Re: Need a new to me car - suggestions please? (no longer might)
« Reply #41 on: October 09, 2019, 07:45:32 PM »
Cool! What interest rate did you get?

35andFI

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Re: Need a new to me car - suggestions please? (no longer might)
« Reply #42 on: October 09, 2019, 07:51:47 PM »
Congrats! Iím not too familiar with the gen 3 but Iím sure youíll like it if itís anything like my gen 2.

Sibley

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Re: Need a new to me car - suggestions please? (no longer might)
« Reply #43 on: October 10, 2019, 09:50:28 AM »
Cool! What interest rate did you get?

3.6? maybe 3.4. Some where around there. I don't have the paperwork with me and the brain is dead.