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Recommendations for good MPG vehicle

DCiAdmin

Always room to learn a bit more
Administrator
iHF Legend
WCG Team Member
#1
201400808_ToyotaCrashed.jpg

My brilliant little car made a grand trip to the Southwest and after just 2 weeks home, faced a sudden impact with a Ford F150. Estimates for repair are $9600 and change - other than the visible damage, the frame is broken as is the front axle. It's been a great 260,953 miles.

I am hoping to find something decent used, but my primary focus is on longevity and MPG. I would like to improve on the 34 - 36 mpg that the Toyota averaged, and would love something that has a good chance to meet or exceed the 260K+ miles that the Toyota made in 9 years time.

My mechanics (Cottman Transmission) have recommended AGAINST anything with a CVT transmission. They tell me the repair tools are specialty and at this time, any needed transmission repairs are dealership only. They said that a similar specialty transmission came out in Fords sometime back and mechanics got "burned" when they purchased the specialty tools and then the transmission that was touted to be the new standard was abandoned. Cottman hasn't steered me wrong yet.

So, the one vehicle that I was very interested in - a Toyota Prius Hybrid - is out because of its CVT transmission. Any other recommendations?
 

Cameldung

I Like It Here
iHF Veteran
Advisor
WCG Team Member
#3
Hi, love to assist but being from Aus dare not attempt a recommendation for the US. What I will say is CVT transmissions have come a long way from the old days. I have memories of old Nissans with CVT trans that were awful to drive, and very fragile, but that has now changed. I have a new vehicle with CVT and it is so much different to drive than the old CVT ones that unless someone told you, you be hard pressed to tell the difference it and a conventional auto trans, except its so much smoother. CVT's are now being fitted to more powerful vehicles than the old slugs too, with at least one manufacturer im aware of fitting them to a 6 cylinder vehicle.

CVT,s aren't going away anytime soon, because the holy grail of manufacturers is to produce more fuel efficient vehicles, lighter (same deal), at a cheaper cost, and this is where CVT excels. Subaru are now using what they call 2nd generation CVT transmissions, and they must be pretty dam good to stand up to WRX drivers?

If you bought something reasonably current, you should no longer fear CVT.

Good luck
 
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Arctos

Beware of the Bear...
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#4
The local taxi cooperative have 4 -5 Prius's in the fleet.

According to the drivers, they are a economical alternative as they getting around 3.5 litres per 100 Kilometre (approc 80 mpg).

One of them has had a replacement battery pack (my words as I do not know the correct name) at 200 thousand klms., which cost an arm and a leg.

They are bit to small for me to get my 195cm body into the drivers seat for comfort, that's one of the reasons we did not get one earlier in the year...
 

DCiAdmin

Always room to learn a bit more
Administrator
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WCG Team Member
#6
Thanks, guys. I'll have a look in the morning.
 

DCiAdmin

Always room to learn a bit more
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WCG Team Member
#8
Any opinions of VW diesels? I'm looking now at 2011 Jetta & 2012 Passat TDI's.
 
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DCiAdmin

Always room to learn a bit more
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#11
That's some repair bill T...

A word of warning that's circulating here in the UK... Beware of 'Used' hybrid cars.... the Batteries seem to need replacing at 4 or 5 years... just as the warranty has expired.. over here in the UK it makes the replacement costs almost prohibitive...
Exactly why I've stopped looking at the hybrids. I've heard some outrageous pricing for the battery pack replacement. Besides, living in the climate that I'm in - I have bad luck with batteries already :)

Yes a better buy than used hybrid
Kind of what I was thinking as well.

My dad was concerned that the higher price of diesel would make the VW a more expensive car to drive. I've just done my math. My Toyota averaged 34 / 35 MPG and gas costs here are $3.31 per gallon. That works out to 10.2 cents per mile. The VW has an EPA rating of 30 city and 42 highway, with many people commenting that their actual mileage is a bit better than EPA ratings. I commute 100 miles round trip daily with 80 of that being highway. So assuming even worst case scenario of me getting worse than EPA - say 40 MPG average and diesel costs running $3.71 per gallon, the cost per mile is 10.7 cents. I think the expected longevity of a VW diesel makes this a decent risk.
 
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driver_ian

In at the Deep End...
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#12
VW are owned by Audi, both brands have become popular this side of the pond because of their quality and reliability... a good choice T.

As an example my brother owns an Audi A4 which now has covered in excess of 200,000 miles and still drives lovely.. he tows trailor homes with it too on a regular basis..
 

AndroidOS

The sarcastic one
Moderator
#13
Not that I want to put you off buying one, but VWs aren't as well built as they used to be. My Dad has a 8 year old Golf Plus (although old(ish) it has only done a little more than 60,000 miles) and it's needed 3 repairs in the last month (suspension, alarm and headlight motor) - and over here they are not the cheapest thing to repair, either (although I don't know what it's like in America, of course).

One of my Dad's previous cars was a Mark II Golf, and that lasted him almost 15 years until he decided it was time for a new one, though. :p
 

DCiAdmin

Always room to learn a bit more
Administrator
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#14
Okay, here are the details of what I'm considering

2011 Jetta TDI with 63,000 miles, pretty well loaded - $17,000
2012 Passat TDI with 97,000 miles, more loaded than Jetta. Has a urea (DEF) tank - $15,700

The Jetta goes "woo hoo" when accellerated. The Passat just responds quietly. Meaning the Jetta is more of a jump response while the Passat "glides".

Forgive me for bothering y'all, but I don't have a local man in life to help me make choices such as this. And my mechanic ability (know how) is limited. Both seem to be excellent cars. My current thought is to request that the dealerships permit me to take each one home overnight so I can actually compare the cars during my typical commute. Otherwise, I haven't really got a preference.

One major thing in the Jetta's favor - it is at a major dealership that offers a 7 day like it or return it for 100% cash back, no questions. Prior to 30 days, they will allow a trade at their dealership or sister dealership for another vehicle and apply 100% of the previous purchase to the next vehicle. The Passat is at a corner dealer and it's a buy it and like it or TS. :)
 

veeg

Live Long And Eat Bacon
Moderator
WCG Team Member
#16
Something i found today...
Remember when those commercials first hit the airwaves? It was only a matter of time before dealerships everywhere started touting a Carfax report with every used car.



The reports promised an almost crystal ball view into the history of a vehicle. Sellers could no longer hide accidents, major repairs or faulty odometers. It's all in the Carfax!



Or is it?

http://money.msn.com/auto-insurance/article.aspx?post=399cbca4-1368-401c-ac67-ec8f5fe2be28
 

DCiAdmin

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#17
Yes, I agree, the Jetta did appear to be the better deal, but we ended up with the Passat anyway :)

I took my daughter out car shopping with me on Saturday and she tested seat comfort. Front, back, and passenger. The passenger seat of the Jetta was okay, she was uncomfortable in the driver's seat and HATED the back seat - no room. The Passat was *highly* approved for all seating configurations. I had the same thought after my initial test drive of the Jetta, so we went with the Passat.
 

DCiAdmin

Always room to learn a bit more
Administrator
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WCG Team Member
#19
My 1st tank of diesel appears to getting 48 - 54 mpg :)