Planning to buy car in next 6 months, please advise

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naturetech
Posts: 9
Joined: Sun May 22, 2016 8:49 pm

Planning to buy car in next 6 months, please advise

Post by naturetech » Mon May 14, 2018 3:07 pm

Hi Bogleheads Auto Experts,

Currently, my wife and I both work and till date were able to manage with one single car(Toyota Rav4 2014). But now we need to drop off our 1-year baby in daycare. So we need to buy another car. I am not sure if we need to buy a car with 3-row seats or just SUV. We are planning to keep this car for lifelong.

Last time when we shopped around my life liked 'Forester'. We don't want to spend too much on a car, maybe stay below 40-45k out the door. Current car loan payment ends next year.

We like Subaru 'Ascent' but it's releasing only June, not sure if we would be able to get good discounts since there will huge demand for this car this year.

Below are my few queries. Can you please help us to choose a right car?
  • Do we need a 3rd seat(Ascent, Highlander, Pilot) or just mid-size car(Forester) should be sufficient? Parents visit once or twice a year, that when we need 3rd row mostly.
  • Latest Security features are a high priority because my wife and baby will be using this car mostly.
  • We want some car with low maintenance. Our general feeling is Toyota/Honda need low maintenance. But we are hearing good reviews with Subaru, is Subaru low maintenance car?
  • Lexus GX460, Infinity QX60 also looks good, but new vehicles are outside our comfortable budget. Is it ok to buy the used car for these models?
  • Really like Subaru Ascent car from release videos. Any issues buying 1 release of the new model, generally I read its better to buy the 2nd release of a new car. Auto experts please share your thoughts on 'Subaru Ascent' car.

Thank you very much in advance. Please let me know if you need any additional details.

Thanks.

delamer
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Joined: Tue Feb 08, 2011 6:13 pm

Re: Planning to buy car in next 6 months, please advise

Post by delamer » Mon May 14, 2018 3:31 pm

Don’t buy a 3 row vehicle for a situation that only occurs a couple times a year. Take two cars if needed to chauffeur your parents, or rent a larger vehicle for a few days.

Even a used luxury car within your budget will cost more to fuel and maintain than a non-luxury model. So avoid luxury if keeping costs low is a high priority.

Toyota, Honda, and Subaru all have good quality reputations.

Consider a Hyundai or Kia too.

abonder
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Re: Planning to buy car in next 6 months, please advise

Post by abonder » Mon May 14, 2018 3:39 pm

I think you approaching this in an open minded frame set and that is good. With one kiddo almost any car will work. I have friends who have two kids and have a 2 door Mercedes coupe and think nothing of it. You certainly don’t need a three row vehicle. You may not even need an SUV st all. You already have a RAV 4 so you have one decent sized suv. You may be surprised how Useful a sedan can be, especially something mid sized like an accord, Camry, sonata. Sedans are “not in fashion”so it’s easier to get a good deal. Either used or new. Also, the back seat of a mid sized sedan is often quite big. Just a thought. I’m not sure when family vehicle automatically became suv, but it certainly not necessary in all cases. I think a used Hyundai Sonata can be an awesome care to get used. Solid reliability and they depreciate fast, meaning you can get a great deal used. If you need AWD then you could do much worse than forrester or Subaru Outback. Of note, I think that the forrester may be undergoing a full redesign for 2019.

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dm200
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Location: Washington DC area

Re: Planning to buy car in next 6 months, please advise

Post by dm200 » Mon May 14, 2018 3:41 pm

It has been many decades, but we were in the minivan customer firsts in the mid 80's (Chrysler minivans).

Our experience - even with just ONE child, having the 3rd row option (can be folded down for cargo) is great for carpools, vacation trips and "threatening" to move either my wife or son to the very back when they got to squabbling.

soccerrules
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Re: Planning to buy car in next 6 months, please advise

Post by soccerrules » Mon May 14, 2018 4:21 pm

don't stress over it, it's a car.

I would sit down and think about how you will use the car the most day in and day out. Then go drive 5-6 different cars to narrow down the options.

you have a Rav4, so maybe a sedan would give you options and better fuel efficiency.

As i think about our car ownership over the last 30 years, we have always had an SUV and a sedan. we have 4 cars now-- 2 suv's - 2 sedans.

I would buy 2-4 years old, 20-40K miles- cash if possible. Spend the $100-150 to have a mechanic thoroughly check it out for things you can't see.
Don't let your outflow exceed your income or your upkeep will be your downfall.

Blueskies123
Posts: 347
Joined: Sat Nov 15, 2014 7:18 pm
Location: South Florida

Re: Planning to buy car in next 6 months, please advise

Post by Blueskies123 » Mon May 14, 2018 4:23 pm

delamer wrote:
Mon May 14, 2018 3:31 pm
Don’t buy a 3 row vehicle for a situation that only occurs a couple times a year. Take two cars if needed to chauffeur your parents, or rent a larger vehicle for a few days.

Even a used luxury car within your budget will cost more to fuel and maintain than a non-luxury model. So avoid luxury if keeping costs low is a high priority.

Toyota, Honda, and Subaru all have good quality reputations.

Consider a Hyundai or Kia too.
Uber XL works great for these situations

nocraig123
Posts: 2
Joined: Mon May 14, 2018 4:26 pm

Re: Planning to buy car in next 6 months, please advise

Post by nocraig123 » Mon May 14, 2018 4:39 pm

naturetech wrote:
Mon May 14, 2018 3:07 pm
Hi Bogleheads Auto Experts,

Currently, my wife and I both work and till date were able to manage with one single car(Toyota Rav4 2014). But now we need to drop off our 1-year baby in daycare. So we need to buy another car. I am not sure if we need to buy a car with 3-row seats or just SUV. We are planning to keep this car for lifelong.

Last time when we shopped around my life liked 'Forester'. We don't want to spend too much on a car, maybe stay below 40-45k out the door. Current car loan payment ends next year.

We like Subaru 'Ascent' but it's releasing only June, not sure if we would be able to get good discounts since there will huge demand for this car this year.

Below are my few queries. Can you please help us to choose a right car?
  • Do we need a 3rd seat(Ascent, Highlander, Pilot) or just mid-size car(Forester) should be sufficient? Parents visit once or twice a year, that when we need 3rd row mostly.

    I typically would not recommend getting a third row of seats in a car that you will only use sparingly for that feature. I would recommend the standard two rows of seating as this would be the primary purpose day to day
  • Latest Security features are a high priority because my wife and baby will be using this car mostly.
  • We want some car with low maintenance. Our general feeling is Toyota/Honda need low maintenance. But we are hearing good reviews with Subaru, is Subaru low maintenance car?

    I just purchased a new car in the same "sub compact" category. There are a lot of good cars. Things to be aware of:

    Honda CRV - 2016 /2017 have this issue with oil / gas leakage. Would recommend you do some internet research on this. Unsure if this is going to be a problem in 2018, but it looks like it could. There has not been a solution per discussion boards to this problem which made me shy away from purchasing this car

    Subaru - forester: this car is pretty popular. My SO drives this but did not want the eyesight in it becuase she thought it was too distracting. Very safe. I don't really like the exterior look but she likes it. I think you can't "go wrong" if you get this but make sure you test drive it becuase the CVT (the type of transmission) really bothered me but doesn't bother the SO

    Mazda CX5 - this is what I ended up purchasing. I liked it. Got the GT with the premium package. Feel like it has all the bells and whistles. Safe car and I think it "looks good". Drives really well but I've only put 200 miles on it. Really good discussion boards for this car online.

    Toyota RAV 4 - I just didn't like how this car looked. Not really sure if thats a big deal to you or not, but it pretty much eliminated this car for me because I want to drive something that looks "good" for the next 15-20 years, hopefully. It has good reviews online and Toyotas generally hold up well. I don't think you could go wrong getting this car.
  • Lexus GX460, Infinity QX60 also looks good, but new vehicles are outside our comfortable budget. Is it ok to buy the used car for these models?
People on these boards love the "buy used, pay off all in one setting, no debt" posts all the time. I don't really understand the value of buying a used luxury car for a similar price as a new car that has the same safety features (if not better) and similar trim packages but isn't considered a "luxury brand". I feel a lot of the higher end trims on the above cars are pretty equivalent to the "luxury" cars, but you'll pay 10-15k less. But to each their own on this.
  • Really like Subaru Ascent car from release videos. Any issues buying 1 release of the new model, generally I read its better to buy the 2nd release of a new car. Auto experts please share your thoughts on 'Subaru Ascent' car.
Don't know anything about this. I'm sure there are more knowledgable people who can better address this.

Thank you very much in advance. Please let me know if you need any additional details.

Thanks.

naturetech
Posts: 9
Joined: Sun May 22, 2016 8:49 pm

Re: Planning to buy car in next 6 months, please advise

Post by naturetech » Mon May 14, 2018 7:38 pm

Thanks @abonder,@dm200,@soccerrules,@Blueskies123,@nocraig123 for great suggestions and advice.

I would just like to add few additional details. We might be expanding family by another 1 in future and didn't want to buy/trade another car when we have 2 kids. Also my wife like cars like 'Forester' which gives a clear view of road and easy to place and remove baby seats. So for these reasons, we were planning to go for another mid sized SUV again.

Currently Ascent pricing for Limited + Technology Package(3000$) may come for 45k out the door. Forrester(2019) pricing will not be still available till October 2018.

I will ask my wife to drive few mid range SUVs like 'Forrestor' and get her thoughts on 'Road View' and safety.

Thanks.

Sasquatch
Posts: 105
Joined: Mon Apr 09, 2018 12:44 pm

Re: Planning to buy car in next 6 months, please advise

Post by Sasquatch » Mon May 14, 2018 7:55 pm

We have the Subaru Outback 2.5 premium. Awesome in snow. Plenty of cargo room for the grandkids stroller and all the other assorted kid stuff. Would definitely buy again except this time I would get the 3.6 engine. Gets great crash ratings too.

naturetech
Posts: 9
Joined: Sun May 22, 2016 8:49 pm

Re: Planning to buy car in next 6 months, please advise

Post by naturetech » Tue May 15, 2018 11:00 am

Thanks @ Sasquatch. We are from south, so snow is not an issue. Always felt good with Toyota/Hondas but currently adding Subaru to that list, based on many reviews from this forum. Good road view and security features remains high priority.

Thanks.

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Taylor Larimore
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Location: Miami FL

Re: Planning to buy car in next 6 months, please advise

Post by Taylor Larimore » Tue May 15, 2018 11:29 am

naturetech:

In my opinion, the April Car Issue of Consumer Reports is the best source of information for anyone buying a new or used car. It is available at most public libraries.

Best wishes.
Taylor
"Simplicity is the master key to financial success." -- Jack Bogle

RickBoglehead
Posts: 341
Joined: Wed Feb 14, 2018 9:10 am

Re: Planning to buy car in next 6 months, please advise

Post by RickBoglehead » Tue May 15, 2018 12:06 pm

I concur that Consumer Reports April issue is worth reading, because if nothing else it opens your eyes to look for things/features/issues that you may not have thought of.

There is no reason to have to spend $45,000 for a vehicle, unless you choose to. Subaru is a good vehicle where AWD is needed, but I don't think it will come out on top for maintenance costs.

We have a Ford Fusion for our 2nd vehicle, and in fact are replacing it (2010) with a 2018 Ford Fusion Energi (PEV) because it has over $10,000 in rebates (if leased) and great fuel economy. In the gas powered Fusion, easily room for 2 car seats and an adult in the middle, although a minivan would be better. Large trunk, and you can pick one up for low 30s with lots of options.

ncbill
Posts: 328
Joined: Sun Jul 06, 2008 4:03 pm

Re: Planning to buy car in next 6 months, please advise

Post by ncbill » Tue May 15, 2018 2:52 pm

naturetech wrote:
Mon May 14, 2018 7:38 pm
Thanks @abonder,@dm200,@soccerrules,@Blueskies123,@nocraig123 for great suggestions and advice.

I would just like to add few additional details. We might be expanding family by another 1 in future and didn't want to buy/trade another car when we have 2 kids.

Also my wife like cars like 'Forester' which gives a clear view of road and easy to place and remove baby seats. So for these reasons, we were planning to go for another mid sized SUV again.

Currently Ascent pricing for Limited + Technology Package(3000$) may come for 45k out the door. Forrester(2019) pricing will not be still available till October 2018.

I will ask my wife to drive few mid range SUVs like 'Forrestor' and get her thoughts on 'Road View' and safety.

Thanks.
Then you want a minivan.

Even though the design is dated, I'd trust Toyota over Honda.

Unless you can wait for a cheaper Pacifica lease on a 2018 after the 2019 model comes out late summer.

naturetech
Posts: 9
Joined: Sun May 22, 2016 8:49 pm

Re: Planning to buy car in next 6 months, please advise

Post by naturetech » Wed May 16, 2018 11:36 am

Thanks @Taylor Larimore , @ RickBoglehead :- I will look into the Apr Consumer report.

Thanks @ ncbill :- The whole confusion starts from whether we want Minivan or not. Personally wife in not favor for minivan. But nothing can beat space in a minivan.

Thanks.

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