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Old 13th February 2013, 13:00   #1936
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Default Re: Buying, Owning, Driving and Maintaining a car in North America

Hot hatch dilemma -

Just test drove the Focus ST, Mazdaspeed3 and VW GTI back to back and am more confused on what to buy than before.

Am looking for refinement at highway speeds for comfortable commutes - found the ST the best here followed by the GTI and the Speed3

Next would be price - the speed3 is coming in under 23k because of discounts, the ST with the ST2 package (cant miss out on the recaros) comes at around 27k and so does the GTI (again here can;t live with the base alloys and have to go with the convenience and moonroof package)

The ST pretty much is the best in fuel economy and the speed3 the worst
But if I plan to keep the car for ~5yrs, the speed3 will need $3k in gas more than the ST

I'm very tempted by the ST now, any ideas on resale value and reliability of fords against mazdas?
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Old 13th February 2013, 13:10   #1937
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Default Re: Buying, Owning, Driving and Maintaining a car in North America

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Hot hatch dilemma -

Just test drove the Focus ST, Mazdaspeed3 and VW GTI back to back and am more confused on what to buy than before.

Am looking for refinement at highway speeds for comfortable commutes - found the ST the best here followed by the GTI and the Speed3

Next would be price - the speed3 is coming in under 23k because of discounts, the ST with the ST2 package (cant miss out on the recaros) comes at around 27k and so does the GTI (again here can;t live with the base alloys and have to go with the convenience and moonroof package)

The ST pretty much is the best in fuel economy and the speed3 the worst
But if I plan to keep the car for ~5yrs, the speed3 will need $3k in gas more than the ST

I'm very tempted by the ST now, any ideas on resale value and reliability of fords against mazdas?
My two cents - the Mazda has the best steering but no auto transmission.

The gti is pure fun - looks great, nice steering feel, auto transmission, German feel interiors.

My pick? Used 135i coupe
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Old 13th February 2013, 16:55   #1938
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Default Re: Buying, Owning, Driving and Maintaining a car in North America

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I'm very tempted by the ST now, any ideas on resale value and reliability of fords against mazdas?
We owned a Ford Focus when we lived in the US, although not the ST version.
Have owned a wide range of Fords back in Europe as well, Sierra, two Mondeo and a whole bunch of Fiesta's. All of them have proved to be pretty reliable, none of them has ever left me stranded. By and large, servicing is not to expensive either. And of course, in the US getting service on a Ford from a dealer, regular workshop or getting parts from the likes such as Autzone is real easy. More so than for a Mazda, although there should be plenty dealers and workshop around as well. There is just more Ford out there!

Statistically it's probably easy to prove that the Mazda is likely to be more reliable. In practice Ford's are very reliable and you can't go wrong.

Can't help you on resale value, but you should be able to get some idea by looking at the various second hand car sales. Or make a few quick comparisons on Kelley Ble book. (see http://www.kbb.com/ ).

My gut feeling, but don't quote me on it, would be that the Ford holds his value better. I say that based on American sentiment of American made versus foreign made, in this case Far East.

Jeroen
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Old 13th February 2013, 17:31   #1939
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Default Re: Buying, Owning, Driving and Maintaining a car in North America

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Hot hatch dilemma -
A hot hatch dilemma without the Subaru WRX thrown in??
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Old 13th February 2013, 18:11   #1940
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Default Re: Buying, Owning, Driving and Maintaining a car in North America

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Hot hatch dilemma -

Just test drove the Focus ST, Mazdaspeed3 and VW GTI back to back and am more confused on what to buy than before.


I'm very tempted by the ST now, any ideas on resale value and reliability of fords against mazdas?
Well, I owned a 2011 Mazda speed 3 for a year or so
The relaiblity of ford and mazdas are almost the same , the car never gave me any trouble, however I was not a big fan of the gearbox and the torquesteer.
I test drove the focus ST, it wins hands down on long term, interior appears nicer,the ride was less brutal, but the down side was the shove on the back was not as impressive as it was in the MS3 when flooring the gas pedal.

But no WRX?? with amitoj
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Old 13th February 2013, 20:53   #1941
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Default Re: Buying, Owning, Driving and Maintaining a car in North America

Thanks for the replies!

Yes, I did drive the WRX hatch as well. Reasons for it falling out of favour -
Most expensive - base starts ~27.5k
Almost as bad in fuel economy as the speed3
Too raw, low rpm engine hum very audible - possibly may not be as comfortable on the freeway
Interior - probably the worst of the lot for the price
Getting replaced next year - also true with the GTI and probably the speed3

@rajushank84 - I'm only looking for a manual, bored of driving a slushbox

Certified used BMWs are an interesting option, but then most are in the last year or so of the service packages and after that, service gets pretty expensive

Last edited by meghan : 13th February 2013 at 20:59. Reason: Adding video link
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Old 13th February 2013, 21:09   #1942
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Default Re: Buying, Owning, Driving and Maintaining a car in North America

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Certified used BMWs are an interesting option, but then most are in the last year or so of the service packages and after that, service gets pretty expensive
Yes, the certification only extends the warranty to 100k/6 years, but you start paying for regular maintenance and wear and tear after that. I believe that you would pay for in any case, even if you buy a speed 3 or GTI or anything else. The warranty covers the drivetrain and electronics and stuff, which would be more painful to repair/replace on the wallet. I think you should explore the CPO BMW option, I saw a brand new 135i with a 6 speed manual at the Chicago auto show with a sticker price of 44k. A 2 year old car must be around or less than the 30k range, I would think.
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Old 13th February 2013, 21:36   #1943
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Default Re: Buying, Owning, Driving and Maintaining a car in North America

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Originally Posted by meghan View Post
Hot hatch dilemma -

Just test drove the Focus ST, Mazdaspeed3 and VW GTI back to back and am more confused on what to buy than before.

I'm very tempted by the ST now, any ideas on resale value and reliability of fords against mazdas?
ST would be my pick. Others are too long in tooth to be considered especially GTi and MS3.

Have you considered BRZ/FR-S and Miata?

How about a 2007-2009 Corvette with <50k miles on odo. You will get plenty of manuals in Corvette.
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Old 13th February 2013, 21:40   #1944
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Default Re: Buying, Owning, Driving and Maintaining a car in North America

If you are specifically looking for a manual, throw the Golf R into the mix. I recently test drove one and liked it.

Having said that- I'd still look for a 135 I . Completely different class in terms of driving pleasure.

If you're not particular about it being a hatchback- I'd consider the g35 or g37 as well. Raw, rowdy power!
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Old 13th February 2013, 22:31   #1945
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Default Re: Buying, Owning, Driving and Maintaining a car in North America

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Having said that- I'd still look for a 135 I . Completely different class in terms of driving pleasure.

If you're not particular about it being a hatchback- I'd consider the g35 or g37 as well. Raw, rowdy power!
At one point i was also considering 135i. The thing to consider is, for the price of a 135i coupe, one can get similar year of 335i coupe. More space, features and even better to drive than 135i.

Also, in Bay area, 135i coupes are hard to come by. Convertibles are available a plenty. That's how the scenario was last summer. May be the times have changed.

G37 coupe will be a great option too. Many manuals will be available in G37 coupe. Great to drive, more features, great interior quality and reliability much better than 135i or 335i.

A general point to consider is, buy before the Spring comes. Winter is the time when coupes/verts and performance cars are at lowest price. Come April/May and the prices go up.

Last edited by chevelle : 13th February 2013 at 22:32.
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Old 13th February 2013, 22:56   #1946
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Default Re: Buying, Owning, Driving and Maintaining a car in North America

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If you are specifically looking for a manual, throw the Golf R into the mix. I recently test drove one and liked it.

Having said that- I'd still look for a 135 I . Completely different class in terms of driving pleasure.

If you're not particular about it being a hatchback- I'd consider the g35 or g37 as well. Raw, rowdy power!
Golf R is a little over priced, in my opinion. You don't get a lot for the money you pay, except maybe some exclusivity.

From the list that he originally had, I think the ST is the best choice, also being the only model that can be called "latest" or "current". The GTI and MS3 are getting new versions. The WRX is also bowing out in favor of a new version in 2014 I guess.

With the 135i (or 335i), what you get is supreme RWD driving dynamics and an engine on steroids. The souped up version of the 135i - 135is highlights is what I saw at the autoshow - It has a little more power than the standard issue 300 bhp engines on base 135 and 335s, plus some weight reduction and performance parts. I guess there won't be any of these pre owned at all, as it came out only early last year and that also means 35k used car prices. But no harm in checking if there are any.

The G coupe - I think with the new Q50 and the coupe version coming in the next 12 - 18 months, old car prices may take a hit. So that maybe a good option to consider as well if you are going the used way.

Last edited by vineethvazhayil : 13th February 2013 at 23:00.
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Old 13th February 2013, 23:37   #1947
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Default Re: Buying, Owning, Driving and Maintaining a car in North America

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I'm very tempted by the ST now, any ideas on resale value and reliability of fords against mazdas?
Focus ST all the way. Ford's quality is right up with the best these days (Long gone are the unreliable days).

My colleague has a 2012 ST and he has covered close to 38k miles, he was in your dilemma and he went for ST and he swears by it.

Also, Ford enjoys a much superior resale value compared to Mazda.
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Old 13th February 2013, 23:46   #1948
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Default Re: Buying, Owning, Driving and Maintaining a car in North America

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Originally Posted by meghan View Post
Hot hatch dilemma -

Just test drove the Focus ST, Mazdaspeed3 and VW GTI back to back and am more confused on what to buy than before.

Am looking for refinement at highway speeds for comfortable commutes - found the ST the best here followed by the GTI and the Speed3

Next would be price - the speed3 is coming in under 23k because of discounts, the ST with the ST2 package (cant miss out on the recaros) comes at around 27k and so does the GTI (again here can;t live with the base alloys and have to go with the convenience and moonroof package)

The ST pretty much is the best in fuel economy and the speed3 the worst
But if I plan to keep the car for ~5yrs, the speed3 will need $3k in gas more than the ST

I'm very tempted by the ST now, any ideas on resale value and reliability of fords against mazdas?
I would suggest to test drive FR-s before you make a decision. Fits under your budget too.
And hey its RWD compared to Focus, and I believe in RWD having better control and handling.
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Old 14th February 2013, 01:09   #1949
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And then there's 370Z too, if four seats aren't needed.
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Old 14th February 2013, 01:35   #1950
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Default Re: Buying, Owning, Driving and Maintaining a car in North America

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And then there's 370Z too, if four seats aren't needed.
I wonder why the Audi TT is never recommended, is there an image problem with TT or is it too expensive for what it offers?
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