Need Help Choosing a New (Cheap) Car
Aug 10, 2009 at 1:24 AM Thread Starter Post #1 of 12


Headphoneus Supremus
Oct 16, 2006
So, with the CARS (cash for clunkers) thingy that Mr. Obama set out $2bil for, my parents have decided to trade in an old Mazda MPV and get the ~$4500 rebate/credit to buy a new car. They want to give me the new car, and I will hand my current car to my brother

Anywho, I ask for help here because I trust lots of you here
And also, because I know there are more car forums out there that I don't know of, and I know that you know some that you may let me know of them! =D

I don't need anything fancy, I was looking into entry-level type cars with good mileage and reliability, eg. Toyota Matrix, Honda Fit, Mazda 3, Scion xD, etc. My dad absolutely hates Corollas, so please don't suggest that! lol

Aug 10, 2009 at 1:37 AM Post #2 of 12
Any of the Volkswagen TDIs. They get REALLY good mileage. My uncle has one of the older ones and he gets 40+/gallon. The new ones get even more.
Or perhaps a civic. Those are pretty basic
Aug 10, 2009 at 2:08 AM Post #3 of 12
hmm, havent even considered volkswagen before! and the civic idea is good too, even though i have a bad experience with them and ricers.

Aug 10, 2009 at 2:11 AM Post #4 of 12
go with the VW diesel. You get excellent mileage and they're fun and sporty. (germans...)

they're actually as quiet as gas engines and they're good on emissions as well. its definitely a win.
Aug 10, 2009 at 2:38 AM Post #5 of 12
Go pick up a copy of Consumer Reports and check the reliability ratings of the cars you're interested in.

When I bought a new car about two years ago, I went through it and narrowed my choices to the Scion tC and the Honda Civic. I really liked both of them, but I was able to get a tC with equipment I wanted for about $4,000 less than a similarly equipped Civic.

It's been about 42k trouble free miles on the tC since. Just routine maintenance and it'll need new tires by the end of the year.

I also picked it because the 2.4L engine has been in Toyota's lineup for 20 odd years and has been used across several models. It's proven reliable and parts are cheap and easy to find. I think the other Scions share the same engine now, too. Also, I like the five speed. If you like a clutch or want to learn, Toyota makes a nice gearbox.

It might not be as sporty as other cars, but it's a bulletproof commuter and nice on road trips. Besides, I keep the RX-7 and Comet around for fun. But boy are those two thirsty.
Aug 10, 2009 at 2:55 AM Post #6 of 12
^good idea.

since my parents will be paying for most of the car, i heed their request for a japanese car--and also i dont want them paying too much. so far, my choices have come down to:

honda fit sport and mazda 3 hatchback

time to look for honda fits, haha
Aug 10, 2009 at 3:27 AM Post #7 of 12
I've owned Hondas, Mazdas and Nissans (among others) and all of them were good cars. I wasn't too impressed with my local Nissan dealer's service department, but once we got out of warranty and started going to our normal mechanic it was fine.
Aug 10, 2009 at 3:33 AM Post #8 of 12
Aug 10, 2009 at 3:45 AM Post #10 of 12
My grampa has the 2009 Focus with a standard shift. I'd say it's one of the nicest cars I've ever driven. Better than my dad's 2004 Accord in many respects and miles ahead of my 1998 Civic. It's relatively light on gas... I think he gets like 34-37 MPG. I usually get about 38-40 in my Civic, but it has a lot less power than that Focus. Great car, I recommend it. Can't go wrong with a Corolla or Civic either, of course, but they'll be more expensive and have less features than the Focus.
Aug 10, 2009 at 4:13 AM Post #11 of 12
ya i hear good things about reliability for fords and hyundais improving, but its too bad my folks wont listen to it--theyre gonna be paying most of the time so i cant complain.

my dad is bent on getting a toyota matrix, so i think the only thing i can do is persuade him to change to honda instead.


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