If you were forced to buy a family car with GOOD GAS MILEAGE... what would you get? - Miata Turbo Forum - Boost cars, acquire cats.

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Old 03-15-2011, 11:36 AM   #1
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Default If you were forced to buy a family car with GOOD GAS MILEAGE... what would you get?

I'm just throwing this out there for funsies.

Here are some guidelines to make it more challenging and to prevent the answer "E30" (because I already want that):

1. Must be under warranty for at least 2 more years / 20,000 more miles

2. Must have four doors and enough back seat room for an decent sized adult to ride comfortably for a 3 hour drive (someone 5'10" should fit)

3. Must get > 35mpg (bonus for > 40mpg)

4. under $37,000 msrp new (bonus for < 30,000) -- subtract 7500 for each year old it is. ie a 2009 would max out at $22000, 2010 $29,5k., etc. (still must meet #1 though)

5. > 1/20 power/weight ratio

6. trunk space.



bonus points (optional):

a) > 40mpg
b) < 30k new (2010: 22k, 2009: 14k)
c) > 1/13 power/weight ratio
d) general awesomeness.



If I think of more, I might add them.


Brainy suggested the new Lexus CT200h was an interesting new find at the auto show. Seems pricey for a tiny, underpowered hybrid.

Also curious about the next gen focus. sadly we don't get the crazy RS.
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Old 03-15-2011, 11:40 AM   #2
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TSX – 6-Speed Manual $29,610

  • EPA Est. MPG2:

    AT: 19 (city) / 28 (hwy)
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Old 03-15-2011, 11:41 AM   #3
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Prius.
Fits pretty much every criteria except there's nothing fun or exciting about it.
My sister in law gets over 50 consistently commuting to nursing school every day.
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Old 03-15-2011, 11:45 AM   #4
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VW Passat 2.0TDI
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Old 03-15-2011, 11:45 AM   #5
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Mazdaspeed 3. I don't know what kind of mileage, but *** tons of room, and power. I am 6'4" and don't have much of a problem. I am looking at getting a 90's mercedes 350 sdl for pimp factory and gas mileage.
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Old 03-15-2011, 11:49 AM   #6
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hyundai sonata, 274hp, under 30k new, and 33mpg highway
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Old 03-15-2011, 11:50 AM   #7
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I was all set to say "MINI Clubman JCW" but they have 5 doors and get 33mpg.
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Old 03-15-2011, 11:53 AM   #8
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Either of the new Hyundai Sonatas...good looks, hell of a warranty, dependable and a nice driving car overall.

Hybrid- $25k base to $30k fully loaded and 35/40mpg

Turbo- 22/33mpg $24 for the SE, $27 for the Limited base price ($27 -$32 fully loaded).


Had a couple of the base models for rentals cars and fit comfortably (5'10 @ 155) and I could only imagine how much better the turbo version is.

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Old 03-15-2011, 11:55 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chicksdigmiatas View Post
Mazdaspeed 3. I don't know what kind of mileage, but *** tons of room, and power. I am 6'4" and don't have much of a problem. I am looking at getting a 90's mercedes 350 sdl for pimp factory and gas mileage.
I love my MS3 but the mpg sucks hard - 20-24 on average and my commute is mostly highway.

If I was buying a family car right now I'd probably go the TDI Jetta Wagon route. The build quality is superior for the price point, the MPG is great and aesthetically it can look pretty good. An engineer at work has a black one lowered on GTI rims and at 38 mpg, it's lust worthy.

-Zach
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Old 03-15-2011, 11:56 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Braineack View Post
TSX – 6-Speed Manual $29,610

  • EPA Est. MPG2:

    AT: 19 (city) / 28 (hwy)
The V6 TSX is only offered with a five speed slushbox.



My vote would be for a 2009+ Civic Si Sedan but you'd be lucky to get 35mpg combined. Otherwise I think it meets your criteria quite nicely.

1. Depending on what year you buy (or new) there should be plenty of warranty left.

2. The current Civic sedan is suprisingly roomy in the back, and it has a decent trunk to boot. Honestly, I'm 6'2" and I don't mind the back seat of the four door civic.

3. See above, you'd be lucky to get 35mpg highway, let alone combined. If you drive reasonably you could probably see 30 combined. (Rated 21/29)

4. With Navi, MSRP of a new Si Sedan is $24,400. If you don't want the crappy Honda navi then it starts at $22,400. Used ones hold their value pretty well but you can get a really nice one for $15-18k.

5. 2950lbs, 197hp (about 15:1)

6. See #2 above, trunk is surprisingly big for how small it looks from the exterior. I was pretty impressed with it, maybe I have low expectations.

With a Hondata reflash, Type R intake manifold and throttle body and TSX cam you see a very good bump in power that is useable at all RPMs, OEM reliability, and even a bump in gas mileage. Those few mods would put you under your 13:1 target, and would cost about another $1k.

Back in 2008 I test drove a Mazdaspeed 3 and a Civic Si. I actually wrote a little review and posted it here on this site. In it I talked about how much better the Mazdaspeed was. Now I'm not so sure...
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Old 03-15-2011, 11:56 AM   #11
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Don't know about your guys' location, but diesel around here right now is over 5/gallon.
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Old 03-15-2011, 11:57 AM   #12
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I was just looking for myself last night - almost the same criteria.

I kept coming back to 08/09 Pontiac G8. Quite a few available under 20K miles and $22,000. They have RWD, 360HP, seating for four adults, comfy, fast, 5 year 100,000 warranty.

It won't hit 35MPG, but should do close to 30 and the power would be worth it.

Hits the awesomeness meter a bit when compared to the crop of vehicles above.
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Old 03-15-2011, 12:00 PM   #13
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1988 E30 Touring ix - AWD, E30 chassis, lots of trunkspace $8k (from Canada so need to get creative with the VIN + $500 )
s52 swap + 2.93 diff - $5-7k (that's paying someone else to do it, and it also means 30-31 hwy mileage, but AWD torque baby!)
aftermarket warranty (you didn't say it had to be the balance of a factory warranty) - $2-3k

Grin factor when finished as a family DD (did I mention it was AWD?) - priceless..... (Sorry, I couldn't resist.) I'm half joking, but seriously, if you didn't need to finance, had a separate DD to wait until the swap was done, it would make a killer family hauler for less than a lot of less fun new cars.

Oh, and I forgot, you can track it, AND carry all the spares, wheels, etc.... in the back.

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Old 03-15-2011, 12:02 PM   #14
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More suggestions.

New Golf TDI. Don't know how roomy the back seat or "trunk" is but it's 25k new, rated at 31/40 mpg and it hasn't been cheapened up like the new Jetta.

Used Jetta Sportwagon (already suggested). You don't want the new one that is all crapified and cheap. Get a 2010 with low miles, bigger and more spacious than Golf TDi, same engine, similar mileage.
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Old 03-15-2011, 12:04 PM   #15
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v8 twin turbo miata
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Old 03-15-2011, 12:14 PM   #16
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I was forced to get a family car.




So I got an SRT8 Charger.
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Old 03-15-2011, 12:15 PM   #17
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I'd like to see a 1988 BMW with two years left on the warranty.

My friend has a '08 g6. Fast, comfy, good mileage, etc. However at the limit handling is sketchy to say the least. Floats all over the place. Not sure if the g8 suffers the same problem.
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Old 03-15-2011, 12:18 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by efini~fc3s View Post
the v6 tsx is only offered with a five speed slushbox.

that's straight off acura.com...


Y8s, is the 35mpg thing hwy only?
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Old 03-15-2011, 12:20 PM   #19
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This fails points 1, 3, and 4, but I believe it is more than made up for in bonus point d.



Mercedes-Benz 500E
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Old 03-15-2011, 12:27 PM   #20
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I'm also going to throw in the Ford Fusion Hybrid. Fully loaded, brand new it's $33k and get's 39-41MPG. Also had several Fusions for rental cars (base and the SE V6) and they've been very plush, roomy cars. They feel bigger than the Sonata and don't get quite as good of MPGs (for petrol versions), but overall it's a nice car. The SE V6 with some nice options goes for $27k and gets ~25-30mpg.

Checked used pricing and low mile ones (well under 10k), 2010 models...low $20k's. Not bad.
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