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Old 2nd August 2013, 21:44   #3016
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Default Re: Buying, Owning, Driving and Maintaining a car in North America

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I am so looking forward to getting on with the hunt for my car. Browsing craigslist and some forums looking for M3s, GT500s (seriously out of budget though), even XJRs has become my favorite timepass activity now
E46 M3 is a good choice. Those are really cheap now (10-20K ish). Watch out for cars with Subframe issues.

http://www.pistonheads.com/gassing/topic.asp?t=1224621

For some reason BMW has a design flaw, and the floors definitely will crack (unless reinforced) at high mileage/ aggressive driving.
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Old 2nd August 2013, 22:01   #3017
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Default Re: Buying, Owning, Driving and Maintaining a car in North America

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I am very excited about the new Q50 and thought it can be a potential upgrade to my '05 G35 Sedan.
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Originally Posted by CaliAtenza View Post
@Chevelle: Its a nice update, but the value proposition of it has sort of gone down now. .
Here is a decent review of the new Q50 -
http://jalopnik.com/2014-infiniti-q5...rive-989518893
There are a few video reviews that have popped up online too.

I think I would really like to drive the "steer by wire" system. Nothing like personally experiencing it. Next service trip to the dealership I should make an appointment.

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It's more, driving a van is like driving a BUS. It's as much fun. It's a people mover, that's it. It will never be a personal vehicle that you'll turn back and look after you park it. That matters to a lot of people.
Oh yes. Most definitely. Missed out on this point. However most CUVs are equally ponderous. At least the BOF SUVs may be off-road worthy. So you just choose the lesser evil of the two (or three). You probably have the best driving 3 row vehicle that is there (minus the Tesla Model S and the E-Class wagon!) in the CX-9.

Last edited by vineethvazhayil : 2nd August 2013 at 22:13.
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Old 2nd August 2013, 22:23   #3018
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Default Re: Buying, Owning, Driving and Maintaining a car in North America

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Guys, I need some help!!

We need to get a family hauler (7 or 8 seater) and my wife is hell bent upon Toyota Siena for its space utilization. What else is there in the 25K price range (used) that will give the same amount of space as Siena? And be almost as reliable? The third row should seat two adults.
Wow! From charger to minivan. That's some change. Hope you get another smile inducing car soon else a focus and minivan will mean lot of yawn inducing journeys.

As for options, all others have already mentioned what you got, but i will say this. Try them back to back to give an idea of space utilization in suv/cuv/minivan. That will give you an idea where you can compromise on.

Honda's have very good seat flexibility and ease of putting it back and forth, so if 3rd row will be occupied many a times, its imp that you consider this aspect.

Another long term aspect you need to consider is fuel efficiency. A minivan's efficiency will be better any day compared to those heavy SUVs.

I am sure in our case, heart will win over head, so you should start looking for a SUV/CUV suggested by everyone here. Even the market share of Minivans have reduced drastically in last decade or so. Its just a no go for many.

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+1
I couldn't agree more.

I don't know for some reason he hadn't test driven a Mazda. May be the brand perception. I will ask him to take a look. Thank You.
Same with my friends. They wanted a CUV. Without any thoughts, finalized CR-V. I suggested CX-5 and they are like, don't like Mazda. I did push them to test drive it, hopefully they do it this weekend before they get CR-V. I think this perception also kills their sales. A meager ~3500 Mazda6 sold and something similar for CX-5 even after winning shootouts and having favorable reviews.


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Originally Posted by vineethvazhayil View Post
Here is a decent review of the new Q50 -
http://jalopnik.com/2014-infiniti-q5...rive-989518893
There are a few video reviews that have popped up online too.

I think I would really like to drive the "steer by wire" system. Nothing like personally experiencing it. Next service trip to the dealership I should make an appointment.
I did forgot in my impression to write about the clock. That was the first thing i noticed and salesman too. He was as pissed at Infi as i was.

OTOH, i never like Jalopnik's review and some of their article are disaster. Look at the Full disclosure in middle of Q50 review or a recent article on c4. What a bunch of ego-maniac writers. First they say bad things about something and then double take on it and change their tone immediately if there is ruthless comments by readers.

Last edited by chevelle : 2nd August 2013 at 22:27.
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Old 2nd August 2013, 23:16   #3019
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Default Re: Buying, Owning, Driving and Maintaining a car in North America

Hi Amitoj,

Best of luck on your search. Hope you go with your heart even in this buy .

The following are vehicles which i did drive and i liked:
Chevy Tahoe
Ford Expedition
GMC Arcadia

In the Minivan segment Dodge has one which is good. It drives well and is fairly comfortable. Unable to recall the name though!

Maddy
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Old 2nd August 2013, 23:25   #3020
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Default Re: Buying, Owning, Driving and Maintaining a car in North America

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Originally Posted by chevelle View Post
Wow! From charger to minivan. That's some change. Hope you get another smile inducing car soon else a focus and minivan will mean lot of yawn inducing journeys.

I am sure in our case, heart will win over head, so you should start looking for a SUV/CUV suggested by everyone here. Even the market share of Minivans have reduced drastically in last decade or so. Its just a no go for many.
Yup. I see some boring times ahead of me. That Focus is not too bad actually. A nice chuck-able package!

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Originally Posted by maddy42 View Post
Hi Amitoj,

Best of luck on your search. Hope you go with your heart even in this buy .

In the Minivan segment Dodge has one which is good. It drives well and is fairly comfortable. Unable to recall the name though!

Maddy
Dodge Caravan? Its going to be phased out soon, if not done already. Otherwise it was quite a good value for money buy.
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Old 3rd August 2013, 00:07   #3021
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Default Re: Buying, Owning, Driving and Maintaining a car in North America

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Dodge Caravan? Its going to be phased out soon, if not done already. Otherwise it was quite a good value for money buy.
The Dodge sells more than the Chrysler version. There has been a lot of talk in the media about phasing out the Dodge Grand Caravan. It seems more of a rumor than a fact - Dodge GC is the highest selling dodge branded car also. There is a blacktop edition too. Check this out for more - http://www.dodge.com/en/2013/blacktop-special-edition/
Anyway - you, sir, don't seem to be cut out for the minivan. Unless your better half wins this war - I see you getting a large SUV/CUV.
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Old 3rd August 2013, 00:19   #3022
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Default Re: Buying, Owning, Driving and Maintaining a car in North America

Dodge GC is definitely one of the better looking minivans. And probably the cheapest too. But I thought it was certain that it wont be continued. News was that Chrysler will continue with the Town and Country and stop the GC. Googled and found this link:
http://blog.caranddriver.com/dodge-c...ysler-lineups/


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Originally Posted by vineethvazhayil View Post
Anyway - you, sir, don't seem to be cut out for the minivan. Unless your better half wins this war - I see you getting a large SUV/CUV.
If it were upto me, then I would not even be looking at minivans. But since this will be the "everyone car" I just might have to relent.
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Old 3rd August 2013, 00:21   #3023
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Default Re: Buying, Owning, Driving and Maintaining a car in North America

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Yup. I see some boring times ahead of me. That Focus is not too bad actually. A nice chuck-able package!

Dodge Caravan? Its going to be phased out soon, if not done already. Otherwise it was quite a good value for money buy.
http://www.motorweek.org/reviews/com...sover_shootout

http://usatoday30.usatoday.com/money...les/50797282/1

This should help you better.

I always liked Pilot and MDX when it comes to 7/8 seater configs. With redesign of MDX, i think you will get used ones at great price.

I like Explorer from outside, but we had it for over 800 miles and interior wise, its not spacious and the touchscreen is awful.

Look wise, i like Durango, makes a strong impact but heard they will phase it out in next couple of years.

A very unlikely competitor that doesn't get mentioned much will be Buick Enclave. If you can get it around $25k, pre-owned, i think it will be a sweet deal.

Try traverse or Acadia. I prefer looks of Acadia but both are still a little behind Pilot/MDX.
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Old 3rd August 2013, 01:35   #3024
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Default Re: Buying, Owning, Driving and Maintaining a car in North America

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Look wise, i like Durango, makes a strong impact but heard they will phase it out in next couple of years.

A very unlikely competitor that doesn't get mentioned much will be Buick Enclave. If you can get it around $25k, pre-owned, i think it will be a sweet deal.

Try traverse or Acadia. I prefer looks of Acadia but both are still a little behind Pilot/MDX.
The only problem with all these is that with the 3rd row up, the bootspace becomes really small.
Siena has 39 cu ft cargo space whereas Enclave/Traverse/Acadia have 23 to 24. Pilot is even lesser at 18. But the Yukon and Suburban have this at a whopping 45 cu ft. (source: edmunds.com. KBB does not give the figures for cargo space with all seats in place)
While it is true that all these would be sufficient for the usual grocery trips or weekend getaways, the space will be sourly missed when the time comes to go on a vacation when my parents are also here. And this is the prime reason to look for a Siena-esque vehicle.
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Old 3rd August 2013, 01:48   #3025
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Default Re: Buying, Owning, Driving and Maintaining a car in North America

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The only problem with all these is that with the 3rd row up, the bootspace becomes really small.
Siena has 39 cu ft cargo space whereas Enclave/Traverse/Acadia have 23 to 24. Pilot is even lesser at 18. But the Yukon and Suburban have this at a whopping 45 cu ft. (source: edmunds.com. KBB does not give the figures for cargo space with all seats in place)
While it is true that all these would be sufficient for the usual grocery trips or weekend getaways, the space will be sourly missed when the time comes to go on a vacation when my parents are also here. And this is the prime reason to look for a Siena-esque vehicle.
And that is why i mentioned about compromises. Unless you go for full blown suv, your options are limited. So you have to figure out - FE or Cargo space? SUV image or Minivan image. Also the full size ones will be expensive which would mean you will be spending more or getting a early models.

The last option would be to have a roof rack. Use for those long trips that will help you with cargo.
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Old 3rd August 2013, 01:56   #3026
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Default Re: Buying, Owning, Driving and Maintaining a car in North America

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And that is why i mentioned about compromises.

The last option would be to have a roof rack. Use for those long trips that will help you with cargo.

You make me sad :(

But roof rack is an excellent suggestion! Thanks for that. Except that it will mean that I will be the only one loading and unloading the car/suv/minivan. But that is something that I can surely live with.
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Old 3rd August 2013, 03:26   #3027
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Default Re: Buying, Owning, Driving and Maintaining a car in North America

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The only problem with all these is that with the 3rd row up, the bootspace becomes really small.
Siena has 39 cu ft cargo space whereas Enclave/Traverse/Acadia have 23 to 24. Pilot is even lesser at 18. But the Yukon and Suburban have this at a whopping 45 cu ft. (source: edmunds.com. KBB does not give the figures for cargo space with all seats in place)
While it is true that all these would be sufficient for the usual grocery trips or weekend getaways, the space will be sourly missed when the time comes to go on a vacation when my parents are also here. And this is the prime reason to look for a Siena-esque vehicle.
My thinking has always been, if you need a large vehicle for a vacation, just rent the most suitable one for your need. It's only for a few days. Why would you pay a higher monthly payment for years costing thousands of dollars? Do the math, you'll end up paying multiple thousands of dollars on space you only need for a few days a year. Heck, you guys might not like the vehicle and change your mind shortly and end up selling the vehicle, and all that extra money you paid is now gone. Worse, you spend all that time driving something you never really liked and enjoyed, to me the worse crime because we didn't do our due diligence, it was our choice.

If I ever needed to carry 7 or 8 people on a week(s) long vacation, I'll get something like a Suburban, hell if I can get one with a lift package for offroading, I will get that one and be the biggest beast on the road. I bet it'll be a vacation to remember.

The other side of the coin is, if you have kids who are into sports like hockey that needs a lot of gear to be transported to various locations regularly, then the case can be made although, I tell you, with the 3rd seat down (normal position) the CX-9 has a plenty of space.

A compromise that maybe worth thinking about.
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Old 3rd August 2013, 03:40   #3028
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Default Re: Buying, Owning, Driving and Maintaining a car in North America

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Originally Posted by amitoj View Post
The only problem with all these is that with the 3rd row up, the bootspace becomes really small.
Siena has 39 cu ft cargo space whereas Enclave/Traverse/Acadia have 23 to 24. Pilot is even lesser at 18. But the Yukon and Suburban have this at a whopping 45 cu ft. (source: edmunds.com. KBB does not give the figures for cargo space with all seats in place)
While it is true that all these would be sufficient for the usual grocery trips or weekend getaways, the space will be sourly missed when the time comes to go on a vacation when my parents are also here. And this is the prime reason to look for a Siena-esque vehicle.
One of my friends here had the previous gen Sienna & now the newer one. No matter how much we hate the image, nothing beats the Sienna & Odyssey's of the world when it comes to Practicality. It has amazing space & features and ride comfort is unbeatable.
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Old 3rd August 2013, 18:34   #3029
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Default Re: Buying, Owning, Driving and Maintaining a car in North America

I may be preaching to the choir here, but for sheer utility, a minivan is unbeatable no matter how much SUV-ing and CUV-ing you do to convince yourself for substitutes. There is simply no match. And on the flip side what is equally true is that there is no such thing as a 'drivers minivan' either.

Also, (another preaching), if your utility for 7/8 seats is limited to the yearly visit from parents or that Thanksgiving getaway trip with friends, why not rent (only) when you need more seats? No point in owning an elephant that will really be useful for a fraction of a time, but will suck your resources (loan, gas money) all year round regardless.
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Old 5th August 2013, 02:21   #3030
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Sunday afternoon , two hours and voila. This cannot be compared to ppl who wax and polish regularly, this was my first attempt and i really didnt wax it. Used the Wash and wax mix and polished the car. Next time - i ll attempt clay bar

Thanks Amitoj for the inspiration


Next week - Truck and Bike..
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