What Kind of Car Do You Drive and Why?

Non-investing personal finance issues including insurance, credit, real estate, taxes, employment and legal issues such as trusts and wills
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BobE
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Post by BobE » Wed Aug 22, 2007 5:42 pm

Still driving the '95 Q.

SamB
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Subarus for valuethinker

Post by SamB » Wed Aug 22, 2007 7:03 pm

*****
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Amishman
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Post by Amishman » Wed Aug 22, 2007 7:21 pm

2004 Honda Pilot

2006 Honda Odyssey


Both were top rated by CR in their class when I bought them.

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catdude
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Post by catdude » Wed Aug 22, 2007 7:39 pm

2007 Toyota Camry (V6). I've had good luck with Toyotas -- they're dependable, quality cars. I'm gonna drive the Camry until the mechanic refuses to work on it anymore.

johnny :)

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grabiner
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2007 Civic LX (mid-line)

Post by grabiner » Wed Aug 22, 2007 7:45 pm

The Civic seems to be a natural choice for a Diehard car buyer; inexpensive to buy, fill up (I get 31 MPG), and repair. (My alternative was a Corolla, but I couldn't get a comfortable driving position.)

I considered buying a hybrid, but decided that it didn't make economic sense, and probably didn't even make environmental sense. The Civic hybrid has most of the same features as the top-of-the-line Civic DX, and the cost of a DX and hybrid with tax credits and lower fuel costs are about the same. But I didn't want most of the DX features, and while my LX will use more gas to operate, it costs much less money, and thus probably much less energy and pollution, to manufacture.

cudaman
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Re:

Post by cudaman » Wed Aug 22, 2007 7:47 pm

A "nasty" 1965 Plymouth Barracuda. Gets 1/2 mpg on the track (if that) when she's rockin' and rollin'. Why? Because it's a "freaking" adrenaline blast. It's also a money pit - that's why I invest.

bearcat98
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2006 Fusion

Post by bearcat98 » Wed Aug 22, 2007 9:40 pm

2006 Ford Fusion S

29-34 mpg on the freeway, never a tank below 27 mpg.

In July 2006, a 2003 Taurus actually would have been the best value; low resale value = good used car buy, and reliable (the Taurus "earned" its bad reputation with engines and transmissions that were long phased out). But with a growing family, I wanted the "extra" air bags.

Valuethinker
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Post by Valuethinker » Thu Aug 23, 2007 1:54 am

bettega wrote:Wow, wasn't expecting so many replies....

I have a Subaru Forester Turbo, emphasis on the turbo! I love it for the practicality and because it's the 91'st fastest car ever sold in the USA (there was a list floating around the internet) through the 1/4 mile but looking at it you could never tell. The insurance is soooo cheap and you can cram a lot of stuff.


Top speed is so much about air resistance and streamlining. The fastest cars, by and large, are small and light.

I have to say AWD is both a blessing and a curse. It requires a lot of courage to drive hard because you have to brake early, steer early, and gas early hoping that while you unload the rear end you have enough power to swing the rear about... not for the faint of heart. It's not as controllable as a RWD, or even a FWD with lift throttle oversteer, but the bland styling makes up for it in avoiding tickets!


You make it sound like hell. Collision avoidance is very much about having a car that compensates for one's own stupidity when driving. That's why Porsches are so dangerous (the older ones): they don't.

Valuethinker
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Re: Subarus for valuethinker

Post by Valuethinker » Thu Aug 23, 2007 1:55 am

SamB wrote:I have twelve years experience with AWD and unless you live in an area where it snows a lot it is completely unnecessary, and mechanically more complicated with the usual higher costs.


Thank you for that thorough explanation. My aunt and her partner had Subarus, but I think they drive Mitsubishi's now. Undoubtedly, in snowy rural Ontario there were merits, but they haven't repeated the experience.

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Re: 2007 Civic LX (mid-line)

Post by Valuethinker » Thu Aug 23, 2007 1:57 am

grabiner wrote:The Civic seems to be a natural choice for a Diehard car buyer; inexpensive to buy, fill up (I get 31 MPG), and repair. (My alternative was a Corolla, but I couldn't get a comfortable driving position.)

I considered buying a hybrid, but decided that it didn't make economic sense, and probably didn't even make environmental sense. The Civic hybrid has most of the same features as the top-of-the-line Civic DX, and the cost of a DX and hybrid with tax credits and lower fuel costs are about the same. But I didn't want most of the DX features, and while my LX will use more gas to operate, it costs much less money, and thus probably much less energy and pollution, to manufacture.


Unless you do a lot of stop-go urban driving, the hybrid doesn't really pay out. Also I understand the fuel economy plummets if you use the A/C?

In time, there will be plug in hybrids. Using a green electricity tariff (or a utility with a high nuclear proportion, so the nighttime consumption is almost carbon free) it would be possible to make a huge dent in the CO2 output.

Valuethinker
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Re: 2007 Civic LX (mid-line)

Post by Valuethinker » Thu Aug 23, 2007 2:02 am

grabiner wrote:The Civic seems to be a natural choice for a Diehard car buyer; inexpensive to buy, fill up (I get 31 MPG), and repair. (My alternative was a Corolla, but I couldn't get a comfortable driving position.)


Just for a benchmark, the diesel version, when it reaches the US market (if it does) should get you c. 45mpg. A measure of how much can be achieved with existing technology.

Hondas are brilliant. My family in North America drives 3 Accords (3 different households). If Honda made a station wagon, they'd drive that too (that one's a Volvo). Most comfortable car for an over 6' driver I've encountered, and some of the most precise steering. The new Accords are too big for the driveway though.

biasion
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Re: Subarus for valuethinker

Post by biasion » Thu Aug 23, 2007 6:09 am

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whitemiata
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Re: Subarus for valuethinker

Post by whitemiata » Thu Aug 23, 2007 7:37 am

bettega wrote:
You also forgot to mention that with AWD all the tires have to be of the same type, age and wear. If you get a flat more than a few thousand miles into the tires life, you have to either have the new one shaved or change all four, otherwise there will be differences in rotational speed which will burn out the differentials.



Hum... can't you just have the tire with the flat FIXED? Or is everyone buying new tires when they get a flat now? :-)

Unfortunately there are way too many boring roads where I live. It's all straights for the most part... I would love to have a Turbo Subaru in the hills of Italy or in Switzerland, or other places like that with lots of tiny little roads loaded with curves. I am not materialistic at all and only have the faintest of idea about most consumer items, but one toy I would definitely like is something like an STI in Italy. Whoa, that would be so much fun!


I think you meant to say "Lotus Elise" ... not saying that an STI wouldn't be fun there, but there's cars, there's sports cars, and then there's the Lotus Elise. For what it's worth a good friend of mine still has a second series Lancia Delta Integrale (the "Deltone" model ... with full Martini decorations) AND his brother has an Elise. I know... I wish they had a hot sister <grin> ... anyway... drove both. I don't know how an STI compares to an Integrale 2nd series, but the Lotus was in another league from a "HAVING A FREGGIN' BLAST" standpoint. Having sorta-raced up that mountain road for years on my motorcycles, my take was that the Delta was downright scary ... but the Lotus was like "Where's my Helmet, and where are the other Formula 1 cars?"

mmmmm Elise

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gunn_show
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Post by gunn_show » Thu Aug 23, 2007 12:25 pm

the Elise is very nice, but extremely small and expensive

for nearly half the cost you can get a Honda S2000 and it has almost the same experience. i have an s2000 and know people with the Elise... of course they love it, but hard to justify the price tag and even less function and reliability.
"I love competition. And I want to win." R. Murdoch

Lilly
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Post by Lilly » Thu Aug 23, 2007 5:11 pm

I drive a 1998 Dodge GRAND caravan. 157K miles. Just love it. I can't stand making payments.

Lilly

yakers
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Living A Full LIfe

Post by yakers » Thu Aug 23, 2007 5:55 pm

1985 VW Westfalia camper. Why? We're on our way to Burning Man :lol:
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CavalierBob
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Post by CavalierBob » Thu Aug 23, 2007 6:11 pm

1998 Toyota Tacoma Xtracab. Why? Paid cash for it, runs like a top, used to commute 110 miles a day in it, OK gas mileage. Now it is just my "set of wheels" since I work from home.

2003 Lexus RX300. Why? Wife loved the car, really wanted it. We shopped hard and (she) found we could get the Lexus for a really good price compared to some of the other SUV's we were looking at. My Toyota pickup made us both fans of Toyota products and the Lexus has not disappointed. May be the last new car we buy, but I really doubt we'll buy anything but a Toyota or Lexus in the future.

Bob

diasurfer
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Re: 2007 Civic LX (mid-line)

Post by diasurfer » Thu Aug 23, 2007 6:33 pm

Valuethinker wrote:
Hondas are brilliant. My family in North America drives 3 Accords (3 different households). If Honda made a station wagon, they'd drive that too (that one's a Volvo). Most comfortable car for an over 6' driver I've encountered, and some of the most precise steering. The new Accords are too big for the driveway though.


Honda used to make them [see my post above]. I have a '95 Accord wagon. They stopped making them in 96 or 97.

I think when fuel standards changed in the 90s, minivans and SUV were counted as trucks, and didn't have to meet as high of an mpg standard. Wagons were considered cars and had a higher standard. Wagons practically disappeared overnight.

I love wagons. I treat them like small pickup trucks with lockable camper shells. Every once in awhile I put the back seat up for 4 passengers but most of the time it's down. I've had a '77 VW Dasher wagon, '81 Subaru wagon (non-4WD), and a '90 Honda Civic wagon, and they've all been good cars. I feel like I've upgraded to a luxury car with my '95 Accord wagon!

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Bounca
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Re: 2007 Civic LX (mid-line)

Post by Bounca » Thu Aug 23, 2007 6:39 pm

Valuethinker wrote:In time, there will be plug in hybrids. Using a green electricity tariff (or a utility with a high nuclear proportion, so the nighttime consumption is almost carbon free) it would be possible to make a huge dent in the CO2 output.


Been there, done that. Interesting documentary. While watching it I vaguely started to remember the cars.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Who_Killed_the_Electric_Car%3F

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White Coat Investor
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Post by White Coat Investor » Thu Aug 23, 2007 8:51 pm

CavalierBob wrote:2003 Lexus RX300. Why? Wife loved the car, really wanted it. We shopped hard and (she) found we could get the Lexus for a really good price compared to some of the other SUV's we were looking at.
Bob


I have a friend (male) who wants one of these. I tease him that it is a middle-aged woman's car.
1) Invest you must 2) Time is your friend 3) Impulse is your enemy | 4) Basic arithmetic works 5) Stick to simplicity 6) Stay the course

RTR2006
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Post by RTR2006 » Fri Aug 24, 2007 1:52 pm

2001 Black Mercedes Benz CLK 320 convertible, 117,000 miles. Paid cash.

And on a warm day, tooling through wine country or along 17 Mile Drive in Monterey with the wife and the top down (the car's... not hers), there's simply nothing nicer.

:)

likegarden
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Buy American!

Post by likegarden » Fri Aug 24, 2007 6:54 pm

We drive a 2002 Buick LeSabre (48,000 mi) an a 2004 Buick Century (18,000 mi) and are very happy with them.

Both Buicks have no unnecessary maintenance, are comfortable with enough space on trips. We run Buicks always to 120,000 miles, then buy a new one again.

We like to support the US economy, which will then support my SS and pension. We are not buying foreign cars because we do not care to support the pensions of people in Japan or Germany. This is not against foreigners, I was a European myself, have been in Asia 14 times.

I would like to mention that people living in "snow" country learn early on how to drive in snow and ice and do not need any AWD, the same as there is no need for a SUV to go grocery shopping. BMW and Mercedes are employed in the US mostly as status symbols, because we here in the US usually have no winding narrow mountain roads and Autobahnen were you may drive 100 mph in stretches.

Have a great day!
Bernd

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curly lambeau
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Re: 2007 Civic LX (mid-line)

Post by curly lambeau » Fri Aug 24, 2007 7:26 pm

diasurfer wrote:Honda used to make them [see my post above]. I have a '95 Accord wagon. They stopped making them in 96 or 97.


Honda still makes wagons. They just don't sell them in the US. (They may even make them in the US).

I also have an Accord wagon. Wagons are the best.

diasurfer
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Re: 2007 Civic LX (mid-line)

Post by diasurfer » Fri Aug 24, 2007 7:36 pm

curly lambeau wrote:
diasurfer wrote:Honda used to make them [see my post above]. I have a '95 Accord wagon. They stopped making them in 96 or 97.


Honda still makes wagons. They just don't sell them in the US. (They may even make them in the US).

I also have an Accord wagon. Wagons are the best.


Then there is hope for the future!

biasion
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Post by biasion » Sat Aug 25, 2007 9:13 am

[removed]
1. Do not confuse strategy with outcome | 2. Those who fail to plan plan to fail | 3. Do not assume the unlikely is impossible, and | 4. Be ready to deal with the consequences if you do.

Valuethinker
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Re: 2007 Civic LX (mid-line)

Post by Valuethinker » Sat Aug 25, 2007 10:32 am

Bounca wrote:
Valuethinker wrote:In time, there will be plug in hybrids. Using a green electricity tariff (or a utility with a high nuclear proportion, so the nighttime consumption is almost carbon free) it would be possible to make a huge dent in the CO2 output.


Been there, done that. Interesting documentary. While watching it I vaguely started to remember the cars.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Who_Killed_the_Electric_Car%3F


[/quote]

Not the same vehicle at all!


The EV1 did not have a hybrid power plant.

http://www.eaa-phev.org/wiki/Main_Page

http://www.brightcove.com/title.jsp?tit ... =526148725

talk by former CIA Director James Wolsey.

His testimony to Congress:

http://energy.senate.gov/public/index.c ... ss_ID=4342

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grabiner
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A/C on high-efficiency cars

Post by grabiner » Sat Aug 25, 2007 10:38 am

Valuethinker wrote:
grabiner wrote:The Civic seems to be a natural choice for a Diehard car buyer; inexpensive to buy, fill up (I get 31 MPG), and repair. (My alternative was a Corolla, but I couldn't get a comfortable driving position.)

I considered buying a hybrid, but decided that it didn't make economic sense, and probably didn't even make environmental sense. The Civic hybrid has most of the same features as the top-of-the-line Civic DX, and the cost of a DX and hybrid with tax credits and lower fuel costs are about the same. But I didn't want most of the DX features, and while my LX will use more gas to operate, it costs much less money, and thus probably much less energy and pollution, to manufacture.


Unless you do a lot of stop-go urban driving, the hybrid doesn't really pay out. Also I understand the fuel economy plummets if you use the A/C?


The A/C makes the mileage look worse on a high-efficiency car, but it's a numbers issue. Suppose that the A/C uses one extra gallon of gas for every 450 miles you drive.

If your car normally gets 22 MPG, it uses 21 gallons to drive 462 miles without A/C; using A/C makes it use 22 gallons, so you drop to 21 MPG.

If your car normally gets 30 MPG, it uses 15 gallons to drive 450 miles without A/C; using A/C makes it use 16 gallons, so you drop to 28 MPG.

If your car normally gets 44 MPG, it uses 10 gallons to drive 440 miles without A/C; using A/C makes it use 11 gallons, so you drop to 40 MPG.

All three cars use an extra gallon to run the A/C on the same trip, so the cost is the same, but the economy car loses more MPG. Another way to look at this is that the difference between 21 and 22 MPG is just as important as the difference between 40 and 44 MPG.

This is another reason that a hybrid may not be a good deal on what is already an economy car. There are diminishing returns from improving fuel efficiency on a car that is already efficient.

Slapshot
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Post by Slapshot » Sat Aug 25, 2007 12:40 pm

We have a Toyota Sienna with AWD. We keep the middle seats out and use it as a carrier/locker room for mountain biking, hiking, skiing, the beach, etc. The dog rides on the rear bench seat which folds under when he's not with us. We've had minivans since the original Caravans in 1984 and love the flexibility, even now that our kids are long gone from the nest. With a blowup mattress always on hand, we can pull over and sleep anytime.
This time, like all times, is the best of times if we but know what to do with it.

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Kathleen Ryan
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Post by Kathleen Ryan » Sat Aug 25, 2007 8:16 pm

I drive a 2004 Chrysler Sebring Limited Convertible. It is midnight blue with a light beige interior. Why? Because my frugality wins out over splurging on a Ferrari. I like the styling very much. Chrysler has changed the design dramatically and I don't think it is as pretty now. It now has a retractible hardtop, and the grill is smaller, and lines across the hood.

This is what it looks like:

Image

And here is the new design:

Image
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Best wishes, | Kathleen

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Abciximab
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Post by Abciximab » Sun Aug 26, 2007 2:57 am

My new job is about 20 miles away, so I just bought my younger sister's 2001 Saturn SC1 (it just wasn't good enough for her). It's very simple (4 cyl, power nothing), gets great gas mileage, has cold AC, and runs great. It feels really good to be back in a lower-end car.
An investment in knowledge always pays the best interest - Benjamin Franklin

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WiseNLucky
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Post by WiseNLucky » Sun Aug 26, 2007 7:50 am

Thanks for all the comments about Subaru's AWD. I had actually thought about looking into one for my next car, so the information is very useful and timely.
WiseNLucky

lippy
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Post by lippy » Sun Aug 26, 2007 8:18 am

1993 Dodge Grand Caravan LE with 135k.

I get a company car from my employer:
2005 Chevy Impala SE

Because of the company car, we keep the miles off the van (~2500 miles last year).

I have the option of purchasing our company cars, which I will do on this one…my oldest daughter is starting to drive. We will give her the van (it won’t bother me so much if she totals it), and move into the Impala as the family vehicle, when I rotate into the next company car. Benefit: purchasing the company car, I don’t have to pay the inflated price, deprecation, and payments for a new car. :D

Regards,
Lippy

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White Coat Investor
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Post by White Coat Investor » Sun Aug 26, 2007 9:01 am

WiseNLucky wrote:Thanks for all the comments about Subaru's AWD. I had actually thought about looking into one for my next car, so the information is very useful and timely.


I drove a Subaru Wagon in high school. It had FWD/4WD and I thought it was great. Of course, I lived in Alaska at the time....
1) Invest you must 2) Time is your friend 3) Impulse is your enemy | 4) Basic arithmetic works 5) Stick to simplicity 6) Stay the course

biasion
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Post by biasion » Sun Aug 26, 2007 9:45 am

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stratton
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Post by stratton » Sun Aug 26, 2007 10:10 am

the 90/10 split is only there on the automatic transmission models of certain type with electromagneitc center differentials.

Interesting. I forgot to mention I have an automatic. I love the car for winter driving, rough roads for camping and hauling stuff. I don't like larger SUVs; too expensive, top heavy, low gas milage and I don't need that type of vehicle. That doesn't mean you shouldn't have an SUV if you need it.

Paul

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LH
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Post by LH » Sun Aug 26, 2007 2:19 pm

2000 nissan maxima. motor trend engine of the year if I recollect right. Bought it new. only 44k on it now.

Bought it because hopefully it will last to 150-200k, and because the engine had the acceleration that I like, and it wasnt that expensive. Essentially the same thing structurewise/enginewise as the infinitys of that time, except for interior and such.

tacitus7
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Ford to Chevy

Post by tacitus7 » Sun Aug 26, 2007 8:51 pm

Three months ago, I traded my 94 Taurus (with 183,000 miles on it) for a 2004 Impala with the 3.8 engine. The price was right. And that engine is a powerful 6 cylinder that gets between28 and 31 all around mileage and very often runs for over 200,000 without any major repairs needed.

A nice midsize car I hope to run for a long time.

Joe E.

yakers
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Jeep Cherokee 4X4

Post by yakers » Sun Aug 26, 2007 10:57 pm

For the 4WD & AWD discussion, our 'second' car is a 1998 Jeep Cherokee (regular, not Grand Cherokee) we have AT tires and a very small lift, off road in Death Valley and other places we play, the 4X4 is just great. Nice little Hondas & other all wheel drives without proper gearing and differentials come on out & play, I'll tow you back to the road.
On off road surfaces the AWD stuff is like bringing a knife to a gun fight.

Chip
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Post by Chip » Mon Aug 27, 2007 6:48 am

'98 Camry 2.2L, 153K, bought new
'93 Ranger Supercab 4.0L 2wd, 92K, bought used at 28K

Until May, '70 LeMans Sport convertible 350cid, 212K, bought used at 77K in 1977 :D

Got the Camry for the same reasons many have mentioned here. Though it hasn't been quite as reliable as I expected. The pickup is useful for hauling bikes, mulch, lumber, etc. I have had ZERO troubles with it, probably due to the fact that it has a Mazda engine and transmission.

The Pontiac had a lot of great memories associated with it, but it wasn't quite as much fun to drive in our 50s as it was in our 20s. And I got tired of working on it. Those who say "they don't make cars like they used to" are right, they're MUCH better now :D .

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Ricky63
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Post by Ricky63 » Mon Aug 27, 2007 9:25 am

2004 Infiniti G35X, purchased new. I had to buy new, so as to write off this (company) purchase. 4WD, 280HP, NEVER a problem after 30K miles

2002 Chevy 3500 1 Ton Truck. Duramax Diesel. Purchased used with 44000 miles. Used for towing/hauling. Some minor problems, but this has been an excellent truck.

1992 Jeep Wrangler Sahara. For crawling around the hills here in Northern Nevada. Very dependable.

Regards,

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whitemiata
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Post by whitemiata » Mon Aug 27, 2007 11:23 am

bettega wrote:Alessandro;

La Deltona faceva paura? Scary good or scary bad? My great uncle had one of the final series ones (I think a 1992) that was heavily modified (~280hp I think). It was fast as stink and scary to drive but it was "old style" with lots of turbo lag and of course dangerously twitchy at the limit.


Hard to say if it was scary good or scary bad. Definitelly fun. But definitelly unforgiving and tough at the limit. I would think nothing of driving the Elise at a much faster clip than the Delta. Given the right circumstances I'm sure a Rallye driver could outdrive another Rallye driver in a Delta vs. Elise. But me (little competitive driving, mostly used to do autocross) I'd definitelly do much much better with the Elise. The Elise is all about preservation of Momentum. The car isn't all that *fast* in straight-line terms, but it can take turns faster than nearly anything you can buy... so it's a more fluid "slow-makes-you-fast" type driving experience. I would LOOOOVE to drive one of those at Deals Gap.

I never drove the Elise but I can imagine a huge difference between the two as the Delta had a chassis which was designed in the late 70's. This means it was very light, maybe not like the Lotus, but also unsafe both in a good and bad sense. I never drove the Elise, but the STI is very, very easy to drive. Like most AWD cars it's very numb, but what distinguishes it is how easy it is to drive fast under all conditions. It forgives all kinds of mistakes. Granted, it's not for the purist, but it's personality is more "go fast every second that you drive" or as Top Gear put it "Hey you! Outside, NOW!" It also has a useable back seat and a trunk, which is a huge plus.[/i]


Based on your description I'd say the Elise is much more similar to the STI than the Delta.

As far as the Turbo lag in the Deltone, it was definitelly a car of it's time, though compared to some other turbos of the time it wasn't too terrible (considering the power it put out). My friend (it was actually his dad who was buying these cars... my friend and I couldn't afford anything like a Delta integrale when they came out) owned the previous series Delta integrale (the latter Martini one was much cooler with all the rallye bodywork and all) and the latter had more power, better handling AND the turbo was much better.

Alessandro

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Index Fan
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Post by Index Fan » Wed Aug 29, 2007 9:27 pm

2003 Saturn Ion, bought new with 0% financing.
"Optimum est pati quod emendare non possis." | -Seneca

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Sphinx
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Re: 2007 Civic LX (mid-line)

Post by Sphinx » Thu Aug 30, 2007 4:29 pm

Valuethinker wrote:Unless you do a lot of stop-go urban driving, the hybrid doesn't really pay out. Also I understand the fuel economy plummets if you use the A/C?


For the 2001-2003 Prius, the A/C does force the gas engine to keep running when the car would normally shut it off. For the 2004+ Prius models, I do not think this is the case.

-+-

I bought a used 2002 Prius earlier this year. For my job and location (Los Angeles), it's the only car that made long-term economic sense. On my 25-mile commute to work, it gets twice the mileage of my old Ford. It also doesn't use up gas while idling in traffic, the way my Ford did. The car seems tailor-made for Los Angeles' rush hours.

During super-short trips of a few miles, though, the car's mileage plummets to 33mpg instead of its usual 48-51mpg. So whether or not a hybrid makes sense depends on the length of your commute. I think financial columnist Scott Burns averages 44mpg on his 2003 Prius.

:)

Stephen001
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My Two "cars"

Post by Stephen001 » Fri Aug 31, 2007 9:37 pm

My wife and I require two vehicles as we work different towns, different shifts, etc.

We have one small SUV which is our dog-mobile. We own a Samoyed sled dog and we use this vehicle to transport him around on walks, trips to vet, kennel, etc etc. Gets about 25 or so on the highway if the wind isn't against you.

That one is a Toyota Rav4. I forget the year, 2000 I think. It's paid off so It's not too new.

The second vehicle we just replaced. We turned in a 1996 Chevy Lumina which was not getting very good mileage and we had owned since 1996. We bought a 2004 Honda Accord LX at a pretty good price. I guess it gets in the 33 or miles per gallon range. This is our four door sedan people mover. We wanted a very reliable used vehicle that gets good gas mileage. The accord is it. As a "mid-size" sedan if feels a bit small to me but it does have power steering, power brakes, power windows, cruise, automatic trans, air conditioning, rear defrost, etc. So it has all the options and gets good mileage.

I hear that John Edwards is keeping his two SUV's even though he said as president he would ask Americans to give theirs up. Sigh.

When will we start installing more nuclear power which is greenhouse gas free and could charge electric cars in a clean way? I guess the global warming "emergency" isn't all that much of an emergency when we can deny ourselves a massive, existing, greenhouse gas free source of energy because of "political correctness".

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White Coat Investor
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Re: My Two "cars"

Post by White Coat Investor » Fri Aug 31, 2007 10:49 pm

Stephen001 wrote: We own a Samoyed sled dog and we use this vehicle to transport him around on walks.


Seems like it defeats the purpose, no? :lol:
1) Invest you must 2) Time is your friend 3) Impulse is your enemy | 4) Basic arithmetic works 5) Stick to simplicity 6) Stay the course

Stephen001
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Re: My Two "cars"

Post by Stephen001 » Sat Sep 01, 2007 12:37 am

EmergDoc wrote:
Stephen001 wrote: We own a Samoyed sled dog and we use this vehicle to transport him around on walks.


Seems like it defeats the purpose, no? :lol:



Ahhhh, you are very sharp! we drive about a mile down the road to hit some trailheads and then we can go through various woods and trails with him. But we don't want him doing anything in peoples yards between our home and the woods.....so in the SUV we go. It's also fun to bring him along on errands and helps to cure his boredom.

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yockee
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Post by yockee » Sat Sep 01, 2007 9:32 am

My newest car is a 1997 Plymouth Breeze...great lil car, if I can keep the aluminum head from cracking. Working on the second head. Bought from Shreveport Dodge in 98 with 15K on it. Got 92K now. Actually I got 38MPG on last trip, and thats with the cracked head. 1989 Chevy Celebrity daily driver 2.5 Liter...gets 20/ City 32 Freeway, and lastly have a 93 Civic, best mileage was 38MPG of course its automatic. My daugheter who drives it can't do a stick. Luckily just got rid of a Grand Marqui, great car as far as safety, gret car as far as gas companies are concerned also.
My project cars:
91 Geo Metro with 1.0 liter, 4 door wagon. 1986 Chevy Celebrity Eurosport witha 2.5 liter. Would like to get a Ford Escort with good body to convert to electric...If anyone has input on Toyota Prius with cost/benefit analysis I'm interested. My dream car would 2dr 57 Chevy..but you know how much one of those costs....

I'm really a gear head who also likes to invest and prepare for retirement. I'm 55 years, got a 60K annual retirement from the military, Got some money in Total Stock Market and the REIT...Have a leftover Traditional IRA (less than 5% of portfolio value) figure to let it ride out till we have to take money from it, have Roth IRAs for me and spouse, (max them out every year) participate in government employees Thrift Savings Plan (simular to a Traditional IRA in that my employer takes money out pretax) are within 5% of maxing out contributions.

Should I max out TSP or cut back on TSP and use Index funds for after tax money?

Yock

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White Coat Investor
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Post by White Coat Investor » Sat Sep 01, 2007 12:22 pm

yockee wrote: Should I max out TSP or cut back on TSP and use Index funds for after tax money?


Whoa tiger....time for some education here. I suspect based on the fact that you even asked this question (although there are no stupid questions) that you could benefit from reading The Boglehead's Guide to Investing or a similar investing book. Four issues with the plan you are considering:

1) The TSP investment options (C Fund, I Fund etc) ARE index funds.
2) Not only are they index funds, but they are even less expensive than Vanguard (comparable expense ratios are 0.18-0.30 for Vanguard and 0.03 for the TSP) The TSP is like 10 TIMES cheaper.
3) Although index funds are relatively tax efficient, one should almost always take advantage of his tax advantaged accounts prior to investing in a taxable account (admittedly there are a couple of exceptions, but I'd bet dollars to donuts that they don't apply to you.) Remember when you put money in the TSP you not only get to let it compound tax-free, but you get an initial tax break in the year you make the contribution.
4) As a federal employee, you probably qualify for a match if you make contributions to the TSP. Not taking this is passing up free money, leaving part of your salary at work in effect.

So the answer to your question is you should max out the TSP.

Good luck investing and welcome to the forum.
1) Invest you must 2) Time is your friend 3) Impulse is your enemy | 4) Basic arithmetic works 5) Stick to simplicity 6) Stay the course

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watchnerd
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Post by watchnerd » Sat Sep 01, 2007 4:24 pm

stratton wrote:
Interested in your experience of All Wheel Drive. What went wrong?

I have one of those too. I love my 98 Subaru Legacy wagon. All Wheel Drive costs you about 1-2 mpg. Normally AWD is always on with 90% to front and 10% power to rear wheels. It readjusts itself without any driver intervention. Around town stop-and-go driving I get around 20 to 22 mpg. On longer trips I get around 28 to 30 mpg as long as you can cruise on thru-way without stopping.


Not all AWD works that way, although the method you describe is common to both Subarus and the Haldex system.

The Quattro IV system in my 2000 Audi A4 wagon works quite differently. It's a permanent-AWD system that, at its heart, uses a Torsen differential with either a 50/50 or 40/60 front-rear power split, depending upon the model of car. In the event of slippage, it will automatically transfer up to 80% of the torque to either axle.
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Post by biasion » Sat Sep 01, 2007 10:05 pm

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