Author Topic: Need a used reliable good gas mileage vehicle  (Read 4966 times)

socalwkr

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Need a used reliable good gas mileage vehicle
« on: June 07, 2014, 08:36:59 AM »
My Toyota Corolla was totalled by a family member :(  Insurance covered it and I have an emergency fund to cover any additional expenses so not looking to finance or anything.  I currently commute about 33 miles each way for work. 

Loved the Corolla but only complaint was from my two young children who felt squished in back seat with car seats etc.

Looked at the Honda Insight, but small backseat again.  Considering the following, any thoughts?  Want this car for a long time and hope to have a part time gig sometime in the future so I am not driving so much.
1) Used Prius, 2010ish?
2) Used Mazda3
3) Used Matrix



CarDude

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Re: Need a used reliable good gas mileage vehicle
« Reply #1 on: June 07, 2014, 08:48:40 AM »
You're not going to get any better back seat space in any of those vehicles, as they're all small cars, like the Corolla. For more lateral space, you'll need to move up to midsized cars. I'd suggest a 2007 or later Toyota Camry or 2008 or later Honda Accord. You can find the Camry for around 8k and up, and the Accord for around 10k and up.

Icecreamarsenal

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Re: Need a used reliable good gas mileage vehicle
« Reply #2 on: June 07, 2014, 09:04:31 AM »
How much are you looking to spend? I am shopping around and for me it looks like a used Prius V is the way to go. They make them in 3 different sizes, the Prius V being the largest of them all, getting 45 city and 40 highway. May be worth a gander.


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hexdexorex

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Re: Need a used reliable good gas mileage vehicle
« Reply #3 on: June 07, 2014, 09:21:13 AM »
I would stay away from honda hybrids because there batteries dont seem to last as long as prius.

All 3 are great cars....IMO matrix isnt that attractive while the other two are fine...but all are great reliability etc. I would support going for a prius over a prius V unless you need the space.

fishingman88

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Re: Need a used reliable good gas mileage vehicle
« Reply #4 on: June 07, 2014, 09:35:39 AM »
More information would definitely help, especially budget.

The Matrix has a bigger backseat than the Corolla in my opinion.  I'm 5' 10" and never felt too squished in the backseat of a Mazda 3.  I think either the Matrix or Mazda 3 would be good choices while maintaining good MPG.

The Honda Civic IMO has a pretty decent backseat as well (as long as it's not the coupe) and has excellent gas mileage. 

I feel like the price premium of the Prius will not offset the cost of gas unless you drive it very very long time, but you still have to consider the battery replacement down the road which will still negate savings again. 

MoneyCat

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Re: Need a used reliable good gas mileage vehicle
« Reply #5 on: June 07, 2014, 09:52:20 AM »
I feel like the price premium of the Prius will not offset the cost of gas unless you drive it very very long time, but you still have to consider the battery replacement down the road which will still negate savings again.

The price of used Priuses (Prii?) have dropped considerably lately so I think they are a very good value.  Since you are commuting by car to work right now, a Prius may be a good option for you.  I wouldn't worry about battery replacement, because those batteries last a really, really long time.  Some cabbies use the Prius in NYC and they often put over 500,000 miles on them before having to replace the battery pack.  I have been driving a hybrid for nearly four years now and I have had zero issues with it.  At the rate that I drive, it will probably last another 15 years at the least, so you definitely get your money's worth (plus there is much less maintenance than regular internal combustion engine cars).

socalwkr

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Re: Need a used reliable good gas mileage vehicle
« Reply #6 on: June 07, 2014, 03:12:27 PM »
Thanks so much for the insight.  I am a new follower to the forum.  Don't really want to spend more than $13 or 14k but want the car for the long haul. 

hexdexorex

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Re: Need a used reliable good gas mileage vehicle
« Reply #7 on: June 07, 2014, 03:34:25 PM »
New Honda Fit is going to get around 36 mpg average and has a ton of room in the back if your fine with going that small...

iwanttobelive

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Re: Need a used reliable good gas mileage vehicle
« Reply #8 on: June 08, 2014, 08:43:01 PM »
Just posted this in another thread. I recommend a +90K or mile, high millage prius, 2004-2009 year. Should be less then $10K-$5K. 45-55 MPG, fits 5 adults and stuff in the back.

blackomen

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Re: Need a used reliable good gas mileage vehicle
« Reply #9 on: June 09, 2014, 07:51:31 AM »
My Toyota Corolla was totalled by a family member :(  Insurance covered it and I have an emergency fund to cover any additional expenses so not looking to finance or anything.  I currently commute about 33 miles each way for work. 

Loved the Corolla but only complaint was from my two young children who felt squished in back seat with car seats etc.

Looked at the Honda Insight, but small backseat again.  Considering the following, any thoughts?  Want this car for a long time and hope to have a part time gig sometime in the future so I am not driving so much.
1) Used Prius, 2010ish?
2) Used Mazda3
3) Used Matrix

Prius is only a good deal if you drive 20,000+ miles a year.  If buying one with over 150,000 miles or older than 2010, ask the owner if the hybrid battery has been replaced (and request a receipt if so.)  If not, add $3500 or so to the price and evaluate if it's still a good deal.  I've had the battery on a 2001 Prius fail (with about 160,000 miles) last month.

boarder42

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Re: Need a used reliable good gas mileage vehicle
« Reply #10 on: June 09, 2014, 08:19:57 AM »
i dont know why everyone thinks these batteries die ... maybe in the prius and honda they do but i have a 2008 ford escape hybrid that gets 45mpgs and talked with ford and they said the engine usually dies before the batteries start failing.  FWIW the FEH was used in NYC as a taxi cab and they ran up to 300k miles with no issues.  Just saw one on ebay with 450k miles and batteries were still good.  Mine has 184k on it with no battery issues.

Jack

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Re: Need a used reliable good gas mileage vehicle
« Reply #11 on: June 09, 2014, 10:36:04 AM »
Looked at the Honda Insight, but small backseat again.

The only Honda Insight worth owning doesn't have a back seat at all.

I second the recommendation for a 2004-2009 Prius, but for the 33-mile-each-way commute I think a 1999.5-2006 VW Golf or Jetta TDI (diesel), with a manual transmission, would be even better.

Cwadda

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Re: Need a used reliable good gas mileage vehicle
« Reply #12 on: June 09, 2014, 10:59:50 AM »
You have the Mazda3 listed and I recently purchased one after doing months of research. My final two choices came down to either a Honda Civic or a Mazda3. This is because I wanted a commuter car that gets in the 30ish MPG.

I went with an '07 Mazda3 that had 86K miles. Purchase price was $6650, and I think that's a decent deal for what it's equipped with. 2.3L engine, leather seats, sunroof, heated seats, etc. I had to put another $800 into it because the previous owner didn't keep it in great shape.

Bottom line is I'm 19 years old and I wanted to get a car that's fun to drive. I can buy a more simple commuter car later in life when I'm older. The Mazda3 goes fast, if you're into that. I absolutely love my car. Did I spend a bit more than I would have on an old Honda Civic? Yes. But I made the right choice.

Icecreamarsenal

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Re: Need a used reliable good gas mileage vehicle
« Reply #13 on: June 09, 2014, 07:50:36 PM »
I was recently in a Hyundai Sonata as well.  The backseat was spacious, it got 37mpg highway, and there's a 10 year warranty.  Something to consider.