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Picking out a car for Albert


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You're right about that, SMaK. The Legacy wins hands down. You're getting something brand new with no one else's stinky butt (and all that implies, with accidents, maintenance, etc.) in the seat.

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Drewbert, look at these:

Legacy - 186.4 inches long, 71.7 inches wide, and 59.3 inches tall

Fusion - 190.6 inches long, 72.2 inches wide, and 56.9 inches tall.

So, in conclusion, Subaru Legacy is smaller where it counts for maneuverability, but taller, too, which means it likely has a higher hip point for better visibility, more akin to his soon-to-be Cash 4 Clunked CR-V. He won't feel he's sitting too close to the road after being used to the Honda driving position.

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but it's kinda hard for me to think about a Legacy when I can find a 2008 SRX Sport V8 AWD with a buy it now price of $25,495

Duuuude, be honest here. That SRX is something YOU'D love to have (and it's nice and all, but it has a high-maintenance N*)... but is it what Albert wants? It's his car.

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I think the STS is definitely going to be too big. That would more likely be a car for me if I wasn't pining for an Avalanche. The newest Legacy is also possibly too large too. No way on a Taurus. The Fusion was his goldilocks "just right" in size for a sedan. I think he would "put up" with an SRX to get the luxuries he likes if the price was right.... but that might take some pushing.

put up? Is the SRX just too large for Albert?

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but it's kinda hard for me to think about a Legacy when I can find a 2008 SRX Sport V8 AWD with a buy it now price of $25,495

Duuuude, be honest here. That SRX is something YOU'D love to have (and it's nice and all, but it has a high-maintenance N*)... but is it what Albert wants? It's his car.

Oh he loves Cadillacs too and especially the SRXes of both generations. He just wouldn't want the V8 for fuel economy reasons. In fact, the V8 is the only likely negative on that car that I can see coming from him.

I think the STS is definitely going to be too big. That would more likely be a car for me if I wasn't pining for an Avalanche. The newest Legacy is also possibly too large too. No way on a Taurus. The Fusion was his goldilocks "just right" in size for a sedan. I think he would "put up" with an SRX to get the luxuries he likes if the price was right.... but that might take some pushing.

put up? Is the SRX just too large for Albert?

Probably just slightly.... but he'd learn to like it for all of the luxury goodies it has... We've had a 2010 and 2011 SRX from GM and he loved both of them. They just aren't inside the budget.

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Drewbert, look at these:

Legacy - 186.4 inches long, 71.7 inches wide, and 59.3 inches tall

Fusion - 190.6 inches long, 72.2 inches wide, and 56.9 inches tall.

So, in conclusion, Subaru Legacy is smaller where it counts for maneuverability, but taller, too, which means it likely has a higher hip point for better visibility, more akin to his soon-to-be Cash 4 Clunked CR-V. He won't feel he's sitting too close to the road after being used to the Honda driving position.

wow, without putting them next to each other, the Legacy looks like a much larger car. I don't usually travel with my tape measure, but I've always held the impression it was between the Altima and Maxima in size.

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You're right about that, SMaK. The Legacy wins hands down. You're getting something brand new with no one else's stinky butt (and all that implies, with accidents, maintenance, etc.) in the seat.

Generally the Kizashi is a more interesting drive than the Legacy. quicker / better handling/way better seats. inline motor smoother than the boxer four. 7/100 powertain.

Kizashi SE AWD with memory seat, USB, and dual zone climate control for 22k OTD, can add the heated seats. Kizashi S, 20,600 +/-....29/30 mpg.

Wait a couple months and it may be another grand or two sweeter.......

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The Legacy is bigger than it looks, it has a bulky design, but it is smaller than most mid-size sedans.

Even the SRX V6 is 14/22 mpg, that isn't fuel efficient. The STS is 17/26 which isn't too bad, but I agree with Drew saying it is too big. Plus it is like a 65 year old's car.

The MKZ gets 28 mpg hwy with FWD, but it drops to 24 mpg on the AWD model (same with the Fusion). So that is a big mark against the MKZ. A 2010 or newer Legacy with the 4-cylinder gets 23/31 mpg. It is hard to get better gas mileage than that with AWD, so if high mileage is more important than luxury, the Legacy is a better option than the MKZ. Personally I like the MKZ.

The Pontiac Vibe had AWD too, plus it has EXCITEMENT!!!

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I still say you should search all over for an '08 CTS for $25k. It gets considerably better mileage than the SRX, has a better interior, and looks way better. More fun to drive and quicker, too. The only thing you might get in the SRX is a little more utility, but the SRX doesn't really have that much usable cargo space unless you fold down the second row of seats.

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Drewbert, look at these:

Legacy - 186.4 inches long, 71.7 inches wide, and 59.3 inches tall

Fusion - 190.6 inches long, 72.2 inches wide, and 56.9 inches tall.

So, in conclusion, Subaru Legacy is smaller where it counts for maneuverability, but taller, too, which means it likely has a higher hip point for better visibility, more akin to his soon-to-be Cash 4 Clunked CR-V. He won't feel he's sitting too close to the road after being used to the Honda driving position.

Wow, without putting them next to each other, the Legacy looks like a much larger car. I don't usually travel with my tape measure, but I've always held the impression it was between the Altima and Maxima in size.

Actually, I thought it was also much bigger than the previous generation Legacy. Mine is 186.2 inches long, 68.1 inches wide, and 56.1 inches tall. Yet, side by side, it looks like such a vast difference in size.

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I'd get an Outback over the Legacy just because it's better looking as an SUV than a sedan. Gets great gas mileage with the CVT, has excellent visibility, and a comfy ride. You would have to think of ways to metrosexual it up, but it could also pass as a yuppy mobile, or, if you install a Yakima roof rack, an active lifestyle Pacific NW road warrior. But it's kinda pricey with alloys and CVT at $26K. At that price, you can actually get a pretty attractive looking Legacy Limited with heated leather and everything. Come to think of it, it's only the base Legacy that looks dumpy. I tend to prefer cars anyway, so Legacy Limited it is!

If not, I'd get the Fusion AWD, but that's only available with a thirsty V6. As a lame duck model, it'll probably be cheap to buy after incentives but quite expensive to run at just 20 MPG combined. Wait, Google says AWD starts at ~$29K, so you better bargain hard. MKZ is just a gross and tacky version of the Fusion, and besides, an AWD version stickers at, what, $35K? I genuinely like the Fusion, but only as a $23K four-banger (six-speed with sport package, yea!) or $28K hybrid.

The only other AWD midsize sedan I can think of is the Kizashi. A nice SE model with CVT and 18s stickers at $24K (that's still kinda pricey; I guess that's the price you pay for AWD and a slushbox), and you can probably get one for much less. It's a legitimately good car, but you'll have to keep it forever since its residuals kinda suck.

Onto SUVs. New Sportage looks dashing, even better than the Tiguan, and you can get a nice EX AWD model (LED DRLs, yea!) for under $25K. I like the Juke myself, and it apparently comes with a nifty torque vectoring AWD system and CVT for $22K. Little turbo motor is a blast, but it's got the interior space of a small hatch. (While we're at it, what about a $19K SX4 Crossover?) Patriot and Compass are hopeless. A Nitro, Liberty, or V6 Journey will probably get you negative MPG. I thought the cheap little Outlander Sport would be a good idea, but with AWD, it starts at $24K. OMG can you believe that? Then there's the whole class of soulless cute 'utes, ranging from generic (CR-V, RAV4) to pricey (CX-7, Tiguan) to dangerous (Escape). I simply don't like the Terrain or Equinox.

In conclusion, needing AWD seems to really limit your options, and you pay more, both at the dealer and at the pump. Bummer. But wait, there's hope! The 2012 Impreza is coming later this year, and it's AWD, safe, reliable, and reputable, inexpensive, and will get 36 MPG highway. Ding, ding, ding, I think I know what I'd get!

2012_Subaru_Impreza_4_20_experience.jpg

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The new Impreza will be hard to beat for those who dream of AWD but don't want to pay so dearly for it at the pump. I think Subaru's projected sales increase for the new model is very doable. I hope they come out with a butch version of the hatch, whether they continue to call it Outback Sport or not, that would be the one I'd want. I liked the jacked-up concept hatch they showed.

If Albert prefers something a bit bigger, though, the Legacy is definitely a car I'd at least try before writing it off. At least it's assembled in the USA.

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The Legacy is bigger than it looks, it has a bulky design, but it is smaller than most mid-size sedans.

Even the SRX V6 is 14/22 mpg, that isn't fuel efficient. The STS is 17/26 which isn't too bad, but I agree with Drew saying it is too big. Plus it is like a 65 year old's car.

The MKZ gets 28 mpg hwy with FWD, but it drops to 24 mpg on the AWD model (same with the Fusion). So that is a big mark against the MKZ. A 2010 or newer Legacy with the 4-cylinder gets 23/31 mpg. It is hard to get better gas mileage than that with AWD, so if high mileage is more important than luxury, the Legacy is a better option than the MKZ. Personally I like the MKZ.

The Pontiac Vibe had AWD too, plus it has EXCITEMENT!!!

Well on the fuel economy thing, we know we can only get so good. Even the CR-V only gets about 20 in the city because we have to really push it to get it up the hills. My CTS could do better than that and my Avalanche wasn't far behind.

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A trip back to 2005 finds us 3 excellent and affordable options, none of which are high mileage or beat up.

Merecedes S430 4Matic

Audi A8 Quattro 4.2

Porsche Cayenne S with the highly desirable 340 hp V8.

A 2008 Audi A6 can be had for as little as $25,000.

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The new Impreza will be hard to beat for those who dream of AWD but don't want to pay so dearly for it at the pump. I think Subaru's projected sales increase for the new model is very doable. I hope they come out with a butch version of the hatch, whether they continue to call it Outback Sport or not, that would be the one I'd want. I liked the jacked-up concept hatch they showed.

If Albert prefers something a bit bigger, though, the Legacy is definitely a car I'd at least try before writing it off. At least it's assembled in the USA.

+1

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A trip back to 2005 finds us 3 excellent and affordable options, none of which are high mileage or beat up.

Merecedes S430 4Matic

Audi A8 Quattro 4.2

Porsche Cayenne S with the highly desirable 340 hp V8.

A 2008 Audi A6 can be had for as little as $25,000.

Except for the A6 (no way... already dealt with VW repair bills before), those are all way too huge. You're heading completely the wrong way. He's a soccer dad without the kids. From a performance standpoint, the current CR-V suits him just fine with it's 160hp and 4-speed auto. The only thing he would want to add is heated seats.

Goals are better reliability, equal or better fuel economy. He wouldn't even know what to do with a car that has double the horsepower and torque.

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I thought of a few dark horses in the Acura RL (being a Honda driver), and the Chrysler Pacifica which is a bit bigger than a CR-V, but an 08 Limited costs about $20k. I still like the MKZ because performance isn't a high priority and the MKZ is considerably nicer than a Subaru. And the MKZ is considerably cheaper on the used market than other AWD entry luxury sedans. Passat 4Motions are $20k, but I never really cared for those. Chrysler 300C and Dodge Magnum with AWD are on the used market for cheap also.

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What about the Equinox/Terrain, or even the last Saturn Vue (if he doesn't mind owning a dead brand)?

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We've been looking at the Equinox and he does really like it, but to buy one new... well, Chevy rightfully isn't discounting at the moment. Heated seats + AWD is typically over $25k.

If I could find a Vue Green-Line, that would probably be ideal if they come in AWD.

The Cruze diesel announcement put a kink in things. I may try to pursued him to keep the CR-V as a backup vehicle (since it is nearly paid off) and use the Cruze diesel as his daily driver. The CR-V would still be around for winter driving and I could get a set of snow tires for the oil burner since I'm not afraid of driving in snow without AWD.

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VUE Green Line is FWD only.

A good FWD car with stability control and snow tires can be better than most AWD cars with all seasons.

The C-class is a solid car... the current generation is supposed to be a lot more reliable than the previous one.

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I thought somebody said Albert didn't care for the Cruze, too schmall or somesuch... and to wait for the diesel when the CR-V is giving trouble now, well...

Edited by ocnblu
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I break this down into 2 segments. To get AWD with decent mileage you need a car or a 4-cylinder, small SUV. To buy a small SUV new and get heated seats and some features can easily run over $25k regardless whether it be Equinox, CR-V, even the Kia Sorrento can rise near $30k pretty quickly. So that leaves 2008-09 used SUVs, Ford Escape Hybrid, Saturn Vue, Santa Fe, Pontiac Torrent, etc.

Segment 2 is sedans, which to get new with AWD for sub $25k you are looking at Suzuki and Subaru. But again going to a 2008-2009 car opens up the Passat, Fusion, MKZ, well equipped Legacy, even Cadillacs and Audis. The used sedan market is pretty good at $20-25k.

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Gesundheit

Not as top tier for resale and full product realization as the Legacy. Is the Kizashi a Top Safety Pick of the IIHS? That might affect insurance rates. Mine went through the floor when I bought my Fiesta, which is also a Top Safety Pick.

Edited by ocnblu
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I agree with your assessment, however, you keep suggesting cars that are 1.) way over the size limit. and 2.) some of the biggest maintenance nightmares around.

I sat in the Kazashi today.... it is a serious contender.

I sat in a Kizashi at the auto show, it was pretty nice for the class. It was a more loaded up model, but the interior seemed well made with a few nice materials. And it has the size, price, fuel economy and enough performance. Probably that or a Subaru are the best fit. I like luxury so the MKZ for equal money would tempt me.

Hard to pass up that VW Phaeton though.

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I agree with your assessment, however, you keep suggesting cars that are 1.) way over the size limit. and 2.) some of the biggest maintenance nightmares around.

I sat in the Kazashi today.... it is a serious contender.

speaking as an authority on the issue.....here is the deal.

The Kizashi is a nice car. Super nice. Did you sit in one with a nav, or no nav? AVOID the nav.....

My own personal opinion is the car needs more grunt (but most folks think its fine). I think the chassis could tune out a little bit more of the vibration at times. I think more space would be nice in the back (but that would mean making the car larger). Heated seats and bluetooth should be made available on the lesser trims. The rest of the car is really nice. Its a much more fun car than the old person's car (Legacy). Since those are your only affordable AWD cars in the segment, it's really the better choice of the two.

It's a tough sell on a great car that unfortunately can't lease on the same terms as some of the class top sellers or has residual issues. And when loaded up, the price gets up there and is really hard to ask for. The warranty is good, the car is good. So you just would need to plan on keeping the car or buying it with the zero percent or something.

But pretty much all your AWD options + GGM (good gas mileage) mean crossovers, and crossovers cost more, and don't get super mileage. At 29 or 30 mpg the Legacy and Kizashi are two of the better GGM options + AWD out there.]

That is why the new Impreza i know has serious potential to have the AWD, low price and GGM but my fear is the new IMpreza is a puff cruiser like the Legacy is, only smaller, and there is not any way it will really be much cheaper unless the7 bump up the Legacy in price for 2012.

The AWD is really the thing that is tying you up here but its neccessary for you so aside from paying more for crossovers of any size, and not having any confidence that the new Impreza will have a feature and benefit set that has a major advantage over either the Kizashi or Legacy...I would say simply this...first decide if you simply want a crossover or sedan. then proceed. if sedan, do extended loan on the legacy and do one on the kizashi (trust me they will beg you to check one out for a weekend) and just decide which car you like more. that will at least get that issue solved...(the issue of, is a sedan ok, and i have checked out the only midsize affordable AWD cars out there).

One of my fave Kizashi color combos is the ice blue / tan interior. Does Albert like Ice Blue? Keep in mind the roof rack cross bars are an easy add if you want something to mount a roof rack to.

We just had a guy trade an SRT8 for a zashi recently. People like the car, it needs influencers and enthusiasts like yourself to get it out on the public roads and get the word out.

Once you remove AWD as a must have then the spectrum opens up immensely. You could get a new Equinox FWD for cheap. Or, get a new Passat. All sorts of things become possible.

http://www.washingtonpost.com/business/2011/05/08/AFeosk2G_story.html

Edited by regfootball
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My own personal opinion is the car needs more grunt (but most folks think its fine). I think the chassis could tune out a little bit more of the vibration at times. I think more space would be nice in the back

So more power, more refined chassis and more space in the back. Hmmm...

alex-trebek.jpg

The the final Jeopardy answer is...

volkswagen-phaeton-f.jpg

Edited by smk4565
  • Agree 1
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Subaru Legacy has guaranteed higher residual value. It has (like all Subies) the Top Safety Pick of the IIHS, should translate into lower insurance rates. There are more places to have it serviced in case you need to switch dealers for any reason or you're traveling. What if you have a falling out with the dealer over something? How much farther would you need to travel to reach another Suzuki dealer?

There are so many reasons to avoid Suzuki in its present state.

I was hoping something good would happen for Suzuki since their tie-up with VW, but all we hear are rumblings of discontent on both sides. This can not be good for Suzuki. You can be sure VW will come out of this episode unscathed.

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yeah but the legacy is a snooze to drive, is geriatric in comparison, if you actually want to enjoy the car, the legacy is not the choice between the two. go drive em and check back.

spending money wisely is a virtue, but also spending money on something you are not happy with or does not suit your wants and needs is also a bigger sin.

Edited by regfootball
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  • 4 weeks later...

5 cyl passat is not neccessarily more refined nor more power......

and no all wheel drive!

delivered a KZSH today buyer was also looking at passat and CC went with KZSH because of the drive and AWD

My own personal opinion is the car needs more grunt (but most folks think its fine). I think the chassis could tune out a little bit more of the vibration at times. I think more space would be nice in the back

So more power, more refined chassis and more space in the back. Hmmm...

alex-trebek.jpg

The the final Jeopardy answer is...

volkswagen-phaeton-f.jpg

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