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Kds

Getting rid of my SMART car, so, what would you buy instead ?

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I won't go electric, the technology is just not there yet, nor do they make financial sense either. No hybrids for the same reasons. It's good old dinosaur power for me................so, as I am giving my SMART back later this year when the lease is up (or even 3-4 months sooner if I find something I like) what would you buy as a daily driver vehicle with the prime objective being ease of use, excellent fuel economy, and a low cost of maintenance ?

New or used, it doesn't matter, the budget is a monthly lease payment of $300 tax in with nothing down or $20K cash.

Don't really want FWD.............and realize my choices are limited, but it's not a deal breaker.

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I really dislike most modern cars so I would look at something 15 years old, maybe a nice European domestic market import.

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Getting decent, quality RWD vehicles these days is difficult. Full-time AWD might be a better option if you are set against FWD. My personal preferences are biased, because I have had extremely good luck with a certain brand (FWD) that I have owned for 25 years (since new) so I will keep them to myself. Replacing it would mean a search for something from the same time period and from the same brand. I have had very poor results from most of my RWD vehicles with the exception of the very early British cars (Morris) and one American brand ('64 Rambler 770). Anything newer in RWD has not served me well.

Good luck in your search.

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RWD and AWD are going to be in direct conflict with your desire for economy. That said, I would consider the Impreza/CrossTrek, the Honda HR-V, and the Nissan Juke for small, efficient AWD vehicles.

I'm on the lookout for a 2009-2014 Honda Fit with a manual transmission.

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I have test driven many vehicles over the past few years. I was very impressed with the Honda Civic. If you need more space the Fit is a good choice. If you need even bigger the HR-V and CR-V are good choices. Can't beat their reliability. Our CR-V has averaged 40 mpg on our 8,000 km trips!

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You could up the ante and get a used E 250 Bluetec, but that would up the ante by double and you'd end up with an old man's car with a vile slushbox, so bristling with technology that it'd inevitably end in tears.

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Mercedes, but a Ford van would not be all that different in the end.

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Leadwing.......

Yeah, you're not wrong........it's gonna be tough staying with RWD as there is so little choice. One of my work colleague's has a Scion FRS which I drove the other day.........now that was a nice car........and a used one fits my parameters perfectly.

Lot's of good words for Honda's here as well.........and I like them too......but they're mostly if not all, FWD ?

Time will tell I guess. I travel 2 weeks out of ever month, so that means I am always renting a car, and get to try out a lot of stuff on someone else's dime.

Mike.......

No used MB's for me. Been there, done that, took me 3 times to learn my lesson............might as well drive down the road and hold my wallet upside down out the window. Now, if that sounds funny coming from someone who had a Testarossa and paid $15K for a major engine out service and the associated "while you are in there" items..........it is.

The Nissan Juke is a POS in more ways than one.

Gonna do a spread sheet this week on the next 3 years of prospective SMART maintenance to see what I will be spending before I go any further, and then run some numbers. A new Boxster is my next toy.......so I want to keep the DD as cheap as possible.

Edited by Kds

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For a mere $400K you could buy my friend Dave's Aston Martin DB 2/4. A hairy chested man's car, not some namby pamby candy ass wagon with power steering! But that's a tad outside of your stated budget.

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Kds, just to clarify, to the best of my knowledge, all current Honda cars are either FWD or 4WD (FWD only when 4WD not engaged)

If I have to replace my old faithful, sometime down the road, it will most likely be with a Honda Fit or CR-V.

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Hey MIke.............

How do you like your Fiesta SE ?

I am also eyeballing the Fiesta ST performance version.

Speaking of Aston's.................used DB9's are a steal in relative terms..............around $50-80K. If they weren't such a dog at resale time I might seriously have considered one instead of another Porsche.

Edited by Kds

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I like Jeeps. The real ones with high and low range. Their mileage is shit, but at 250,000k they've hardly reached their half-life. Failing that, I'd like a '51 Ford F1. Red with black fenders please.

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My 4.0L straight 6 Jeep Grand Cherokee was a nice, useful vehicle. When driving easy, it managed a steady 26 mpg. It had high / low ranges. Very convenient vehicle when faced with deep snow, and the ride was firmer than a car, but not as harsh as a truck.

Just don't let it sit for too long without using it. I stopped using it at the end of a winter and started again in the fall .. Doing this meant a total repair of the mechanical portion of the brake system. (rotors, drums, pads and shoes)

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The Fiesta is pretty basic and not 100% reliable. I've had problems with the CEL (there is a $400 service bulletin that reportedly corrects it), leaky oil seal on the output shaft, a water leak into the spare tire well. And a few others. I will sell it as soon as the kids don't need it. And of course it's FWD so that is not in your cahier des charges.

Dealer service is more expensive than Mercedes and they don't seem to like to do recall work. The door handles were recalled - I got the notice in the mail - and they semt me away saying they were short of parts and couldn't do it. That was several months ago. My first and last Ford.

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I went for my first service A for my CLA250 last week, 227+tx. I was a bit surprised but I'm happy! Who could say that! :)

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My 4.0L straight 6 Jeep Grand Cherokee was a nice, useful vehicle. When driving easy, it managed a steady 26 mpg. It had high / low ranges. Very convenient vehicle when faced with deep snow, and the ride was firmer than a car, but not as harsh as a truck.

Just don't let it sit for too long without using it. I stopped using it at the end of a winter and started again in the fall .. Doing this meant a total repair of the mechanical portion of the brake system. (rotors, drums, pads and shoes)

Both our Cherokee sports got/get about 26 mpg. Used them year round, so no brake issues. Also the '93 was a five speed, so I didn't use the brakes much and they lasted a helluva long time before I had to do any work on them.

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The Fiesta is pretty basic and not 100% reliable. I've had problems with the CEL (there is a $400 service bulletin that reportedly corrects it), leaky oil seal on the output shaft, a water leak into the spare tire well. And a few others. I will sell it as soon as the kids don't need it. And of course it's FWD so that is not in your cahier des charges.

Dealer service is more expensive than Mercedes and they don't seem to like to do recall work. The door handles were recalled - I got the notice in the mail - and they semt me away saying they were short of parts and couldn't do it. That was several months ago. My first and last Ford.

They quit making nice Fords in about 1957.

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I would reuse my resource, Consumer Reports if I had to buy a car now. The section I last used was most depreciated cars. I bought a one year old Lincoln MKZ for just about half of the original MSRP.

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Posted (edited) · Report post

Honda Fit would still be my choice. Comfortable, efficient, AMAZING use of space, and quite reliable, from what I've been able to determine.

 

I've driven them with the CVT, but manual would be my preference. If I hadn't gone car-free a year ago, that's probably what I'd be driving today. 

Edited by darren
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Whatever I get next will be similar in size.  Owning the Smart I've noticed something - it's comfortable, it takes me exactly as long as any other car to drive to work, it keeps me dry in the rain.  In that regard it meets my physical needs like any other car.  This 815kg car is perfect for moving it's 117kg, 6'5" owner from A to B.

 

That being the case, anything bigger or heavier would be unnecessary at best, exdessively planet and wallat damaging at worst, so why bother? I'd honestly believed that I'd "needed" this, that and the other in my previous cars, but the little Smart has recalibrated my brain in that regard.

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I have 2 Smarts now, I do not plan on getting rid of any for the forseeable future......once you have it dealt with mechanically I see no reason why you would need to change it out.....yes that means you need to stay on top of everything like a hawk, but what else is there to do...lol..?

Real Life can take a back seat, lol

 

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Posted (edited) · Report post

something with better heat...more ground clearance and more cargo area

 

im replacing mine for winter with either a 4x4 kia sorrento or a chevy equinox....depends which one attracts my ambition first

Edited by LooseLugNuts

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4 minutes ago, LooseLugNuts said:

something with better heat...more ground clearance and more cargo area

 

im replacing mine for winter with either a 4x4 kia sorrento or a chevy equinox....depends which one attracts my ambition first

Maybe after a really cold winter i may change my mind also...lol.
I am about to order two stick on heaters, one for the sump and the other for the radiator lower tank.  So hopefully the car is at running temp as soon as I turn the key, better than a summer's day.....lol
The clearance issue I'm solving as we speak, 2" of lift to enable ne to buy proper snow tires with any luck. Something that even resembles lugs...lol.
IF it doesn't work out then , maybe I'll think dfferently, but so far I'm still in honeymoon stage...lol.

 

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