2nd Car for local driving-suggestions please

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Buster65
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2nd Car for local driving-suggestions please

Post by Buster65 » Fri Sep 20, 2013 9:01 pm

We have an Subaru Outback for road trips, hauling gear, trips to college, etc...
We are searching for Car #2. Prefer something solid feeling that drives well and is fuel efficient. Wife will use this car for her daily around the town driving and to her local job.
Ideas?

Prius (not too solid feeling)
Subaru Legacy
Honda Accord - two door version

m2go
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Re: 2nd Car for local driving-suggestions please

Post by m2go » Fri Sep 20, 2013 9:06 pm

Are you looking for fuel-efficient for pocket book reasons, or for conviction.

Hybrids are still expensive, and it's not clear that you're going to recover the higher investment (if ever).

We love Corollas - cheap and fuel efficient.
Last edited by m2go on Fri Sep 20, 2013 9:58 pm, edited 1 time in total.

madbrain
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Re: 2nd Car for local driving-suggestions please

Post by madbrain » Fri Sep 20, 2013 9:15 pm

You seem to be an ideal candidate for a Nissan Leaf (electric car) as a second car.
If you are not opposed to leasing a new car, the lower end model, the Leaf S, can be leased for just $199/month.
Some states have additional incentives. California will give you a $2500 rebate upfront if you lease for at least 36 months, or buy, and many states let you drive a Leaf in the carpool lane.
You need a place to charge it at home, however. This will not work if you live in an apartment complex. Ideally you would charge it in your garage. It can be charged on a regular 110V outlet, but that takes too long, so you should install a level 2 (240V) charging station. There are subsidies for that in some places too. This least expensive charging stations are about $600 and the electrical work is typically between $300 - $600, pre-subsidies.

freebeer
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Re: 2nd Car for local driving-suggestions please

Post by freebeer » Fri Sep 20, 2013 10:25 pm

archman65 wrote:We have an Subaru Outback for road trips, hauling gear, trips to college, etc...
We are searching for Car #2. Prefer something solid feeling that drives well and is fuel efficient. Wife will use this car for her daily around the town driving and to her local job.
Ideas?

Prius (not too solid feeling)
Subaru Legacy
Honda Accord - two door version


Have you driven Prius? Ours (2008 model) actually feels pretty solid to us (inc. 16-year-old driver). It is very fuel efficient for around town, not so much as Leaf but it's less $ and more realistic if you occasionally need to go on longer jaunts.

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bogleblitz
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Re: 2nd Car for local driving-suggestions please

Post by bogleblitz » Fri Sep 20, 2013 11:03 pm

boglehead approach would be honda accord. They suppose to last forever, cheaper to maintain, so you can drive it for the next 20 years.

ssquared87
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Re: 2nd Car for local driving-suggestions please

Post by ssquared87 » Fri Sep 20, 2013 11:13 pm

Accord drives well, feels solid, and has good mileage especially given its size.

If you want something even tighter like Mercedes early 90's cars which felt like bank vaults, but has excellent reliability, go up to Acura TSX. Its the european version of the Accord, smaller than the american version but much more solid feeling. It lists around 33, but can easily be bargained down to 28, so its within $4k or so of the accord

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Frugal Al
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Re: 2nd Car for local driving-suggestions please

Post by Frugal Al » Sat Sep 21, 2013 11:16 am

How many miles will it be driven annually? I like the Leaf for it's ease of maintenance, depending upon where you live it might make sense. I would think many cars would be decent candidates. Do you really want/need a Legacy in addition to the Outback? Other candidates: Honda Civic, Hyundai Elantra.

stan1
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Re: 2nd Car for local driving-suggestions please

Post by stan1 » Sat Sep 21, 2013 11:29 am

"Solid feel" and "drives well" are pretty subjective so hard to know what will match that requirement. Does drives well mean soft and cushy ride, or tight and sharp handling? Does solid feel mean no cheap plastic or does it mean when you step on the gas the car leaps ahead?

If she is OK with driving a smaller car I'd consider something like a Honda Fit or Mazda 3 to see if they are solid enough and drive well enough.

sport
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Re: 2nd Car for local driving-suggestions please

Post by sport » Sat Sep 21, 2013 11:35 am

We are also in the process of looking for a 2nd car for local use. We recently test drove a 2013 Honda Civic. DW and I were both favorably impressed with the car. If I can get the deal I want, I expect to buy one. If you are interested in a Civic, be aware that the 2014 models are not available yet. The 2013 models are still at the dealers, but they will be one year out-of-date in a few months or so.
Jeff

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Ged
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Re: 2nd Car for local driving-suggestions please

Post by Ged » Sat Sep 21, 2013 11:51 am

jsl11 wrote:We are also in the process of looking for a 2nd car for local use. We recently test drove a 2013 Honda Civic. DW and I were both favorably impressed with the car. If I can get the deal I want, I expect to buy one. If you are interested in a Civic, be aware that the 2014 models are not available yet. The 2013 models are still at the dealers, but they will be one year out-of-date in a few months or so.
Jeff


DW recently picked a Civic for her use, which includes a fairly long daily commute. The base model 2013 Civic gets great gas mileage and has quite a bit of useful standard equipment (more than the Corolla). I don't know if you would consider it 'solid' feeling though. It certainly isn't an Accord.

leonard
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Re: 2nd Car for local driving-suggestions please

Post by leonard » Sat Sep 21, 2013 12:23 pm

archman65 wrote:We have an Subaru Outback for road trips, hauling gear, trips to college, etc...
We are searching for Car #2. Prefer something solid feeling that drives well and is fuel efficient. Wife will use this car for her daily around the town driving and to her local job.
Ideas?

Prius (not too solid feeling)
Subaru Legacy
Honda Accord - two door version


Wait until you can find a great condition, low mile Nissan Leaf. Watch Craigslist for your opportunity and don't rush.
Leonard | | Market Timing: Do you seriously think you can predict the future? What else do the voices tell you? | | If employees weren't taking jobs with bad 401k's, bad 401k's wouldn't exist.

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frugaltype
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Re: 2nd Car for local driving-suggestions please

Post by frugaltype » Sat Sep 21, 2013 12:55 pm

Several people in my extended family have Priuses and like them.

Dave76
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Re: 2nd Car for local driving-suggestions please

Post by Dave76 » Sat Sep 21, 2013 2:18 pm

Stay away from the Hyundai Elantra. I've made numerous trips to the dealer, paid for costly repairs on wear and tear items (rear brakes) for a 2012 car with less than 20k miles on the odometer. I will never buy a Hyundai again.

My second car is a 1987 Chrysler New Yorker (4 cylinder K-car). This car is reliable and costs little to run. It's the best car I've ever owned.

Keep in mind that replacement parts for any foreign make are expensive.

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noyopacific
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Re: 2nd Car for local driving-suggestions please

Post by noyopacific » Sat Sep 21, 2013 4:16 pm

Two friends who are car mechanics recommended a Honda or Toyota. I bought a used Chevy Malibu with low miles because it was "such a good deal." It feels solid and handles fine but I have spent even more to maintain it than I paid for it.
It wasn't such a good deal after all.
Next time, I'd get a Honda or Toyota. My wife has driven Subaru's for 25 years, she loves them but they seem to cost a bit more.
The information contained herein, while not guaranteed by us, has been obtained from from sources which have not in the past proved particularly reliable.

travellight
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Re: 2nd Car for local driving-suggestions please

Post by travellight » Sat Sep 21, 2013 4:36 pm

Consider the Chevy Volt as an alternative to the Leaf. They just reduced the price by 5K and it could conceivably be down below 30k. It has gas back up so you can go for much longer/farther without running out. I think you can also drive in HOV lane in California with it.

m2go
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Re: 2nd Car for local driving-suggestions please

Post by m2go » Sun Sep 22, 2013 9:30 am

Chevy Volt at below 30k is a great deal if you're passionate about this technology and you want to have it.

We bought an SUV for under 25k recently, so 30k for a car is not cheap. Local driving means you don't recoup on gas. (And long distance is yet another issue because you'll run out of battery.)

The batteries last for a limited number of miles/years, at which point the old ones need to be disposed by the car owner as toxic waste and the car owner needs to buy a full set of new batteries at their own expense. In hot states, batteries have a shorter life time.

http://www.csmonitor.com/Innovation/201 ... eries-last

Now, a Corolla or a Civic can be purchased for about 16k - 18k.

Rupert
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Re: 2nd Car for local driving-suggestions please

Post by Rupert » Mon Sep 23, 2013 8:55 am

I've been driving an Acura TSX for nearly 10 years and believe it to be an almost perfect car. That being said, it does not get good gas mileage driving around town and requires premium fuel. Take a look at the new Acura ILX as an alternative. It's basically a luxury Honda Civic. It will feel more solid than the Civic because of the luxury upgrades but should still get Civic mileage. It might require the premium fuel though. You can probably find one gently used at this point as they've been on the market now for a year or two.

ssquared87
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Re: 2nd Car for local driving-suggestions please

Post by ssquared87 » Mon Sep 23, 2013 9:14 am

Rupert wrote:I've been driving an Acura TSX for nearly 10 years and believe it to be an almost perfect car. That being said, it does not get good gas mileage driving around town and requires premium fuel. Take a look at the new Acura ILX as an alternative. It's basically a luxury Honda Civic. It will feel more solid than the Civic because of the luxury upgrades but should still get Civic mileage. It might require the premium fuel though. You can probably find one gently used at this point as they've been on the market now for a year or two.


I'd stay away from the ILX, it's basically an upgraded civic. The 2nd gen TSX is much more solid, and the gas mileage is about the same as ILX. Depending on which ILX you get, it could use the same engine used in TSX so mileage isn't all that different. Also, the TSX and ILX are so close in price that there is little point in going with an overdressed civic vs. a much better built car

I've got a 2010 TSX so I'm biased, but it truly is a great value and it can be had much lower than the MSRP. Gas mileage varies depending on how you drive, but mixed driving I'm getting about 25mpg. Highway only I get 34-36MPG usually keeping an average speed of about 80, but don't accelerate or brake too fast. Just around town I'm in the 23 range. The 2011 and later TSX had some changes which increased mileage above that.

retired recently
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Re: 2nd Car for local driving-suggestions please

Post by retired recently » Mon Sep 23, 2013 10:53 am

Stay away from the Hyundai Elantra. I've made numerous trips to the dealer, paid for costly repairs on wear and tear items (rear brakes) for a 2012 car with less than 20k miles on the odometer. I will never buy a Hyundai again.


We bought a 2009 Hyundai Sonata in summer 2008 and now have 125,000 miles on it. It has never given us any problems.

We are interested in a 2nd car also and like the idea of getting a vehicle that gets great gas mileage. The Volkswagen TDIs look impressive, too bad they are not a hybrid. Our current 2nd is a F150 that I will keep and demote it to third.

WorkToLive
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Re: 2nd Car for local driving-suggestions please

Post by WorkToLive » Mon Sep 23, 2013 11:42 am

We bought a Honda Fit for this purpose. It's a wonderful car--cheap, reliable, great mpg, fantastic visibility with an AMAZING amount of space if you fold the seats down. It's fairly underpowered, but that's the only drawback.

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joe8d
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Re: 2nd Car for local driving-suggestions please

Post by joe8d » Mon Sep 23, 2013 8:12 pm

Consider a Chevy Spark ( made in Korea, South not North :D ).That's what I have.
All the Best, | Joe

jdb
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Re: 2nd Car for local driving-suggestions please

Post by jdb » Tue Sep 24, 2013 7:13 pm

Get an all electric vehicle. No hybrids. You will not regret the decision. Nissan Leaf is my suggestion. Then in few years can get the Tesla GenIII.

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dandan14
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Re: 2nd Car for local driving-suggestions please

Post by dandan14 » Wed Sep 25, 2013 12:18 pm

Safety is my #1 concern. So I was just looking up cars for myself and was trying to find some data on safest cars.
One way to measure that is measuring how many people died per 1000 cars for each model. This is an interesting list put out by the IIHS covering data from 2006-2009.

If I can buy a car that no one died in for 3 years, that's pretty incredible.

http://www.iihs.org/externaldata/srdata/docs/sr4605.pdf

Dan

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Frugal Al
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Re: 2nd Car for local driving-suggestions please

Post by Frugal Al » Wed Sep 25, 2013 1:02 pm

Surprised to see the Subaru Legacy on the highest death list. Does AWD give us over confidence? If so it doesn't seem to in the E-Class Merc. There's no easy way to do a study like this, but it is interesting.

Mike Scott
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Re: 2nd Car for local driving-suggestions please

Post by Mike Scott » Wed Sep 25, 2013 1:09 pm

I really would like an electric car but they are nowhere near cost effective compared to a conventional economy car like a small toyota or honda.

TareNeko
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Re: 2nd Car for local driving-suggestions please

Post by TareNeko » Wed Sep 25, 2013 1:10 pm

Probably not very boglehead-ish, but MINI Cooper is a candidate for good efficiency (2007 and later models), very solid feeling, and they drive really well too...

jdb
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Re: 2nd Car for local driving-suggestions please

Post by jdb » Wed Sep 25, 2013 1:20 pm

Mike Scott wrote:I really would like an electric car but they are nowhere near cost effective compared to a conventional economy car like a small toyota or honda.

I don't have details but have heard that Nissan dealers are offering great lease terms for the Leaf, using the
EV tax credit to lower the monthly payments. You should check with your nearest Nissan dealer.

Mike Scott
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Re: 2nd Car for local driving-suggestions please

Post by Mike Scott » Wed Sep 25, 2013 1:32 pm

The fine print giveth and the fine print taketh away. :happy


I don't have details but have heard that Nissan dealers are offering great lease terms for the Leaf, using the
EV tax credit to lower the monthly payments. You should check with your nearest Nissan dealer.[/quote]

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SquawkIdent
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Re: 2nd Car for local driving-suggestions please

Post by SquawkIdent » Wed Sep 25, 2013 3:04 pm

Honda Fit. 2014s coming out soon with some new funky colors. Jazz it up a little.

This car is a steal IMHO. Cheap, awesome MPG, enormous amount of space inside and extremely reliable. Take care of it and depreciation will be minimal and it will take you to 200,000 miles minimum. Good luck. :sharebeer

Bmac
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Re: 2nd Car for local driving-suggestions please

Post by Bmac » Wed Sep 25, 2013 4:22 pm

+2 on the Honda Fit. For all the previously stated reasons.

Stonebr
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Re: 2nd Car for local driving-suggestions please

Post by Stonebr » Wed Sep 25, 2013 8:31 pm

bogleblitz wrote:cheaper to maintain, so you can drive it for the next 20 years.


Do you actually know anyone that has driven a Honda Accord for 20 years?

Just curious. I've never known anyone that has driven a Japanese car of any make or model for that long.
"have more than thou showest, | speak less than thou knowest" -- The Fool in King Lear

ssquared87
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Re: 2nd Car for local driving-suggestions please

Post by ssquared87 » Wed Sep 25, 2013 8:58 pm

Stonebr wrote:
bogleblitz wrote:cheaper to maintain, so you can drive it for the next 20 years.


Do you actually know anyone that has driven a Honda Accord for 20 years?

Just curious. I've never known anyone that has driven a Japanese car of any make or model for that long.


My dad's Accord is 16 years old not quite 20 but close. Only issue was that he had to replace some hoses, timing chain or belt, and radiator. Otherwise car runs like new

Stonebr
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Re: 2nd Car for local driving-suggestions please

Post by Stonebr » Wed Sep 25, 2013 9:10 pm

ssquared87 wrote:
Stonebr wrote:
bogleblitz wrote:cheaper to maintain, so you can drive it for the next 20 years.


Do you actually know anyone that has driven a Honda Accord for 20 years?

Just curious. I've never known anyone that has driven a Japanese car of any make or model for that long.


My dad's Accord is 16 years old not quite 20 but close. Only issue was that he had to replace some hoses, timing chain or belt, and radiator. Otherwise car runs like new


I understand that these are fine cars. My point is that nobody actually keeps them for 20 years.
"have more than thou showest, | speak less than thou knowest" -- The Fool in King Lear

obgraham
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Re: 2nd Car for local driving-suggestions please

Post by obgraham » Wed Sep 25, 2013 9:13 pm

I understand that these are fine cars. My point is that nobody actually keeps them for 20 years.
What nonsense. Are you saying nobody drives a car made before 1993?

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Ged
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Re: 2nd Car for local driving-suggestions please

Post by Ged » Wed Sep 25, 2013 9:19 pm

Stonebr wrote:
bogleblitz wrote:cheaper to maintain, so you can drive it for the next 20 years.


Do you actually know anyone that has driven a Honda Accord for 20 years?

Just curious. I've never known anyone that has driven a Japanese car of any make or model for that long.


I see 1992 and 1993 Camrys on the road from time to time. They are not that unusual.

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interplanetjanet
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Re: 2nd Car for local driving-suggestions please

Post by interplanetjanet » Wed Sep 25, 2013 9:22 pm

Stonebr wrote:
bogleblitz wrote:cheaper to maintain, so you can drive it for the next 20 years.


Do you actually know anyone that has driven a Honda Accord for 20 years?

Just curious. I've never known anyone that has driven a Japanese car of any make or model for that long.

I bought a 1986 Acura Legend from its original owner, in 2006. 195k miles on it at the time.

It was well maintained and had some work done to it during those 20 years including a partial engine rebuild, and honestly it was the best 20-year old car I have ever driven. The engineering definitely impressed me.

I kept it for 3 years and put 60k miles on it during that time, having only minor issues during that period. After that I gave it to a good friend, I think it's still running fine now with almost 300k on it.

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