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FlowMaster

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Aug 22, 2014
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525
Looking to getting a new car.
Live ~2 hours from airport looking more for MPG than anything.
Looking at Nissan, Ford, Toyota cars
Not gonna do hybrids, electric, truck, or SUV
Need opinions on best for FO pay. Will look at other makers if deal/car is right for the usage.
Thanks all
 

qotsaautopilot

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Sep 20, 2007
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Buying used will save you more $ than anything with better MPG especially with the mileage you'll be putting on it. Best case is used and good MPG. I'm not a VW fan out I hear the Golfs get rediculous mileage. I rented a Hyundai elantra once that seemed quite solid
 

Fats Schindee

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Jul 2, 2005
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Get a used Geo Metro! You won't win any popularity contests, but those things get like 50 mpg...
 

scotts

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Apr 18, 2003
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473
VW Golf TDI. Not a hybrid but about the same mpg and no batteries.
 

FlowMaster

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Aug 22, 2014
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525
VW Golf TDI. Not a hybrid but about the same mpg and no batteries.
I did consider Vdubs at one point but aren't they just all hype and really a crappy car? I.e they require a lot of Maintenence
Not saying they're off the table per se but just want something that won't break down when I get called for a reserve assignment!
 

qotsaautopilot

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Go Jap if you want bulletproof. Koreans are good too. Everyone I've known w a VW or Audi has a Mx queen
 

scotts

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Apr 18, 2003
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Mx issues are hit and miss with a VW. There are a few from each model during their first year or two of a new design. Some VW models will have an issue or two and some won't have any. My current car is a 2010 Passat with the 2.0 turbocharged engine. It is a great car. I had a problem with the transmission early on after buying it (at a huge discount toward the end of the model year - last year of German production). It was fixed under warranty with no drama and I haven't had any problems with it since. I also had a 2006 Jetta TDI (it was totaled by my daughter's boyfriend). It had two issues later on (around 110,000 miles), an air leak in the egr cooling tube and an issue with the dual-mass flywheel. Both issues are well known and well documented. I haven't stayed up to date with the latest offerings from VW other than to know what they are offering. If I were to buy another VW, I would research any currently reported issues on the various message boards and see what other owners are talking about. I really like their products, but they tend to be a little behind in the nifty tech gadget department. I think that if you don't buy the first two years of a model design, you should be okay from a "bug" standpoint. As always, knowledge is power. The internet makes it easier.
 

superdantx

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Nov 19, 2006
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I'll second Japanese. I drive US built Toyota trucks, and they have been bulletproof mechanically. Had an assembly fault on one, guy forgot to attach harness to the alternator, but beyond that NOTHING. But what an earlier poster said rings true, losing 15-20% of the value the second you drive off the lot buys a TON of gas, pre-owned with a little bit less MPG will still put you ahead for the first 5-6 years of ownership.
 

scotts

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Apr 18, 2003
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473
Asian brands are good generally. There are exceptions but few. If I were an FO about to start a two hour commute, I would be looking for the following:

1. Cheap to operate.
2. Remains under warranty at least two years.
3. Full coverage insurance including extended towing and rental car.
4. Fairly comfortable for the long drive.
5. Used, to avoid depreciation but see number 2 and 3.
5a. Make sure you're not buying someone elses problem.
6. If I can wait, I'd wait until September/October to find a good deal on a closeout model year (new car).

Many cars can fit that bill. Be sure that it is covered under warranty and insurance and you'll be fine. If you skimp on those two, you're setting yourself up for failure.
 

lap

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Jul 16, 2005
Messages
13,248
You can buy a used car with a third party warranty. I did that and it paid off when I had to have an alternator replaced.

I would definitely look into buying something that is 2 years old so you save on depreciation. Many places sell lease returns that have 30k miles or less and with a warranty.
 

OuterMarker

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Jul 2, 2012
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My tip is buy a car with an active driver community. If your car has a dedicated customer run forum, then you have a wealth of information on maintenance and repair information from actual customers. That also prevents you from buying a car "designed by committee" which is designed in a boardroom to fill a market gap or use up spare material. Cars like that often have major (and known) design flaws and the car manufacturer quickly drops the car once the issues are known and the production line has run its course. Owner forums quickly identify which models and years to avoid.
 

OuterMarker

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Jul 2, 2012
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You can buy a used car with a third party warranty. I did that and it paid off when I had to have an alternator replaced.

I would definitely look into buying something that is 2 years old so you save on depreciation. Many places sell lease returns that have 30k miles or less and with a warranty.
That is what I did. 2011 car with 27,000 miles with a new 100,000 mile manufacturer sponsored warranty. $25,000 when it was new, and I paid $12,500.
 

Zoiberg

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Oct 3, 2004
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I drive a VW Passat diesel and have had no problems with it. Average 45 mpg doing 70-75 mph. My commute is 2:15-2:30 , very comfortable car for a big guy.
 

OuterMarker

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Jul 2, 2012
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what sort of third party warranties did you guys use?
I didn't even have to shop around for mine. The manufacturer was allowing dealers to give a new warranty on used cars in order to move them off the lot. I found a dealer that was getting rid of the small cars to make way for family SUV and vans, so they were desperate to get rid of a little two seater to make room for the real money makers.
 

OuterMarker

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Jul 2, 2012
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467
And one other money saving thing is to convert your car to flex fuel for about $250. No matter where you live, you can probably find a station with E85 (used in auto racing). The fuel burns much cleaner, is about 1 dollar a gallon cheaper, does not support the oil industry, and is made from the byproduct of animal feed so I help feed my future steaks. Cars made after 1995 have to be flex fuel capable and just require a simple tweak of the on board computer to allow it to burn anything from gas to bourbon. The annoying thing is some manufactures alter the timing to make cars run worse on anything other than gas, but third party companies sell add on units that correct the timing so the engine will run equally well on any fuel combination.
 

qotsaautopilot

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Sep 20, 2007
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5,259
And one other money saving thing is to convert your car to flex fuel for about $250. No matter where you live, you can probably find a station with E85 (used in auto racing). The fuel burns much cleaner, is about 1 dollar a gallon cheaper, does not support the oil industry, and is made from the byproduct of animal feed so I help feed my future steaks. Cars made after 1995 have to be flex fuel capable and just require a simple tweak of the on board computer to allow it to burn anything from gas to bourbon. The annoying thing is some manufactures alter the timing to make cars run worse on anything other than gas, but third party companies sell add on units that correct the timing so the engine will run equally well on any fuel combination.
E85 is actually more expensive where I live. Also isn't the mileage not as good. If you are flex capable get 35mpg on gas don't you get like 30mpg on E85? That's just what I've heard.
 

OuterMarker

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467
E85 is actually more expensive where I live. Also isn't the mileage not as good. If you are flex capable get 35mpg on gas don't you get like 30mpg on E85? That's just what I've heard.
Although the fuel economy is a little less, most care manufacturers purposely make the fuel economy worse on anything other than gas. The computer generation is now turning their attention to hacking cars so people are undoing that bad programing (which oddly does not exist in Brazil which uses E85). I went from 30 mpg to 28 mpg, but the cheaper fuel price made the difference worth it. I have been told that if I get high performance spark plugs, that should burn for of the E85 and improve my fuel economy by another 3-4%, but I am lazy.
 
Last edited:

xjet615

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Feb 10, 2007
Messages
1,288
And one other money saving thing is to convert your car to flex fuel for about $250. No matter where you live, you can probably find a station with E85 (used in auto racing). The fuel burns much cleaner, is about 1 dollar a gallon cheaper, does not support the oil industry, and is made from the byproduct of animal feed so I help feed my future steaks. Cars made after 1995 have to be flex fuel capable and just require a simple tweak of the on board computer to allow it to burn anything from gas to bourbon. The annoying thing is some manufactures alter the timing to make cars run worse on anything other than gas, but third party companies sell add on units that correct the timing so the engine will run equally well on any fuel combination.
Ethanol is complete crap. It is a much lower energy fuel, is not environmentally friendly (contrary to popular belief), drives up food prices, and it damages engines. On top of that, your fuel economy takes about a 30% hit and it's actually about 25% cheaper to run gasoline, even though E85 is typically cheaper by the gallon.

Here's an interesting read.

http://www.globalwarming.org/2013/09/16/new-york-times-covers-the-ethanol-scam-ethanol-mandates-spawn-credits-that-enrich-wall-street-speculators-rip-off-consumers/

And this...

http://www.edmunds.com/fuel-economy/e85-vs-gasoline-comparison-test.html
 

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