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Old 04-09-2013, 02:43 AM   #1
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Default Time to replace the family car with a bigger family car

In about September of '10 we bought a 2007 Mazda CX7 with I think 31,800 miles on it. I like this car a lot as it's comfortable, it's AWD, it's laid out pretty well I think...only issue is: It sucks on fuel consumption. Sucks as in, it gets 20mpg on a good day, and we have to run premium. In my mind...a vehicle like this with today technology...there is absolutely no excuse that this shouldn't get 30mpg's minimun. It has a 2.3 liter 4 cylinder with an intercooled turbo that runs way too rich and spools way too fast. Too fast as in, I think it's supposed to make like 265wtq at like 2,800 RPM or something like that. As far as mechanical issues, we had a leaky transfer case seal and both rear wheel bearings were bad. These issues were all replaced under warranty at no charge.
It now has 64,000 miles on it.
Wife says it's getting too small, and she mentioned trading it in for something bigger like a Mazda CX-9.
I hate the CX-9.
Shopping around for something that gets a little better fuel mileage and is bigger, and something that catches my eye; I found the 2008 and newer Volvo XC-90. I has a 3.2 inline 6 cylinder, is AWD, and looks to be similar in size to the Mazda CX-9, but I'm diggin this thing.
Who has experience with Volvo products other than 1980's 240's??
Give suggestions/ opinions please.
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Old 04-09-2013, 02:57 AM   #2
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My '04 v70 just decided to lose oil pressure as we were getting on the freeway to leave Michigan. Motor is fubared. Only 126k. Hate the damn thing with every fiber of my being.

Nice car though. Even so, they're not what they used to be.
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Old 04-09-2013, 03:02 AM   #3
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I almost traded our 09 Mazda 3 hatch (me and wifey's shared work beater) on a 2008 Volvo C30. I watched an episode of Jay Leno's garage that had a Volvo C30 Pole Star edition, and fell in love. Then I realized "wtf do I need a turbo wrong wheel drive daily for?" Here's the episode in case you're interested: For some reason, I love this car...color and all.
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Old 04-09-2013, 03:09 AM   #4
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My parents have had 2 Honda Pilots, great SUV and a tad better mileage I believe.
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Old 04-09-2013, 03:12 AM   #5
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Honda pilot is out...wife won't buy anything her friends have, and her best friend has a pilot. This also leaves out ford escapes, mercury mariners, and (thank god cause I hate these f'n things) Toyota rav-4's.
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Old 04-09-2013, 10:14 AM   #6
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I would be really impressed if you can find an SUV larger than the CX-7 that will return 30 MPG combined.

The Q5 Hybrid is 26 combined, the Highlander Hybrid is 28 combined, the Lexus RX 450h is 30 combined and the A3 TDi is 34 on diesel. The Q5 is probably smaller and the A3 is definitely smaller and they are all probably more expensive than you want.
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Old 04-09-2013, 10:24 AM   #7
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add a GT35
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Old 04-09-2013, 11:03 AM   #8
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Toyota Highlander = Bigger than CX-7, CR-V, Rav4, but doesn't get amazing gas mileage (except maybe Hybrid model). Fuelly says 21ish to 24ish combined mpgs on anything newer than a 2005. That's regular fuel so maybe 10%+ better FE than the CX-7 and 10% cheaper fuel.

XC90 = Need to buy a newer one to avoid transmission issues (I think). There isn't much data on Fuelly for the XC90 but it looks like closer to 18-20mpg, and the turbo models (do they make one?) will require premium.

Hyndai Sante Fe (or Kia equivalent) = basically same story as Toyota Highlander (minus the resale value of the Toyota). 20-22 mpgs at regular fuel. I have no experience with these cars...

Nissan Pathfinder = worse MPGs than Toyota or Honda Pilot, figure 18-19 overall, again regular fuel.

I wouldn't really recommend any of the US examples of 5+ passenger SUVs, I think they are all in the 18-22mpg range. The unibody Ford Explorer (2011 and newer) looks decent enough, fuelly says 19.5mpg but the ecoboost will require premium.

SOOOOOO

Highlander (possibly Hybrid model)?

That's my recommendation I guess...
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Old 04-09-2013, 12:16 PM   #9
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Honda Odyssey... designed for carrying people and not pretend off roading... 28mpg hwy, we get 22 in town. seats 8, weighs less than a bmw m6. tows 4500 lbs. Drives nice, is a good statement that you don't care about what the joneses drive, but that is a necessary trait for most miata owners anyway.
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Old 04-09-2013, 02:04 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ianferrell View Post
Honda Odyssey... designed for carrying people and not pretend off roading... 28mpg hwy, we get 22 in town. seats 8, weighs less than a bmw m6. tows 4500 lbs. Drives nice, is a good statement that you don't care about what the joneses drive, but that is a necessary trait for most miata owners anyway.
This. Or, in general, if you want a practical vehicle to efficiently carry people, you need to stop being a trend dork and buy a minivan. This is their purpose, nothing else even comes close.

I've told my oldest daughter this until I'm blue in the face. We actually gave her our old Chrysler minivan back when she was expecting her first child. She traded it for a new Honda CR-V at her first opportunity. Now, all we hear is that the car is too small, can't carry all the kid's gear, she needs 3 rows for car pooling, yada, yada. My son-in-law, God bless him, refuses to bust their budget to buy his wife (my spoiled daughter) the latest, fashionable "cross-over." She made her choice, she deals with the consequences. Love that guy!

For my part, we have two Expeditions. We have horses, not kids. Youngest daughter drives the old 4x4 (perfect tank for a 16 year old). Wife drives the newer, largest-possible, EL -- which, BTW, only gets 3mpg worse than your CX-7 despite its bulk, 5.4 and binary (full throttle/full brake) driver.
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Old 04-09-2013, 02:24 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by hornetball View Post
This. Or, in general, if you want a practical vehicle to efficiently carry people, you need to stop being a trend dork and buy a minivan. This is their purpose, nothing else even comes close.
I'm trying to convince my wife of this recently. I'm likely getting rid of my truck when our kid arrives in the fall but still need towing and hauling therefore minivan. It would even mean she gets a new(er) comfier vehicle to drive and I dd her 02 protege but she is still resistant.

She, like many others, wants a small suv *or wagon* instead of a van.
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Old 04-09-2013, 02:28 PM   #12
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You're kidding yourself with those expectations.

Get a CX-5 skyactiv, tell the wife to more practical. Unless you pay up the *** for a hybrid, what you want doesn't exist. And those hybrids will get you mid to high 20's at best. CX-5 gets 35.
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Old 04-09-2013, 02:31 PM   #13
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^^ haha ( to hornet)

XC90 = bad trans and worse mpg. Other than that great car.
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Old 04-09-2013, 02:44 PM   #14
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I will reaffirm everything that has been said about minivans. If you need to haul people or stuff there is no substitute. Like everyone else we have an odyssey and it is awesome. My wife was a diehard minivan hater till I bought one, now you couldn't pry it out of her hands. Sure it doesn't handle like miata, but the seats are comfy, it rides great and the motor has plenty of torque.
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Old 04-09-2013, 03:02 PM   #15
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You guys are awesome at segues! I was going to come around to the minivan eventually after pointing out that the rest of the options were inferior, but all the smart folk jumped on the softball pitch.

Objectively speaking, it is hard to argue against a Toyota or Honda minivan for people with small children (and all the crab that goes with them).
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Old 04-09-2013, 04:19 PM   #16
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Ford Flex FWD. Don't say you need AWD for the snow, you don't. I remember when I was a kid my dad drove our old caravan through like a foot of unplowed snow. Just get snow tires.
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Old 04-09-2013, 04:22 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ianferrell View Post
Honda Odyssey... designed for carrying people and not pretend off roading... 28mpg hwy, we get 22 in town. seats 8, weighs less than a bmw m6. tows 4500 lbs. Drives nice, is a good statement that you don't care about what the joneses drive, but that is a necessary trait for most miata owners anyway.
I got my hopes up there for a second...Honda's website says 3500lb towing capacity.

My brotherinlaw has a new odyssey, it's pretty damn pimp.
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Old 04-09-2013, 04:30 PM   #18
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For 4500lb towing capacity there's the Ford Flex. 18/25mpg FWD non turbo. The Ecoboost can run on 87 octane per Ford, and gets 16/23AWD. Not as good as the 19/28 mpg of the Odyssey, but also not a minivan, and can tow.

twin turbo V6 AWD FTW?
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Old 04-09-2013, 05:38 PM   #19
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I love minivans.

I fondly remember my first exposure. It was an air wing detachment to NAS Fallon, NV in 1987. The squadron had rented some minivans to get around in. One weekend, we took off from Fallon for some R&R in Reno, drinking like frat boys (or maybe frat boys drink like fighter pilots, dunno). The great thing about minivans, they have a huge sliding door just like the UH-1 Huey. Next thing you know, that door is open and we're gleefully taking our turns as door gunners, trying to peg road signs with empties while going 80 down the empty interstate. It was a blast. Miraculously, we had 0 fatalities.

The instant I got home, we traded the old Ford LTD parental-hand-me-down station wagon (wood sides) for a used '84 Caravan. Oldest was 2 at the time. Big upgrade.

Anybody that thinks minivans are boring just doesn't understand . . . .
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Old 04-09-2013, 05:42 PM   #20
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I like the cx5. Wife claims it's actually bigger than the cx7. I don't understand why she wants something that seats 7. Maybe she knows something I don't?
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