Help me find a car!

Discussion in 'The Fire Hydrant' started by Taqroy, Jan 8, 2014.

  1. Taqroy

    Taqroy Active Member

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    Inspired by the other car searches in the venting thread and the fact that my current car (no matter how much I love it) is a money pit.

    Requirements

    - Under $12,000
    - 18+ mpg in the city
    - Reasonably sized back seat. I would prefer that the passenger seat not have to be crammed all the way forward because of the carseat in the back, but I accept that may not be possible.
    - Cargo space that can fit one (but preferably two) medium plastic kennel(s)

    4WD is a definite perk but I can survive without it.

    I'm open to most anything - I like SUV type vehicles but my mpg req & price is going to rule out a lot of them.
     
  2. stardogs

    stardogs Behavior Nerd

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    An older RAV4 might work for what you need - I love mine and the mpgs are averaging around 27mpg in combo driving. I fit two 36" crates behind the rear seat (with some finagling) so your mediums should be easy peasy.

    Depending on how long your crates are, a Subaru Outback might also meet your needs, though again, it may need to be a few years old to get below your price point. I loved my Impreza, but it won't hold two crates and a child seat, especially the newer models.
     
  3. Torch

    Torch New Member

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    I paid $11k last year for a 2006 Mazda 3 with 82,000 miles. It's also the hatchback which are a little more expensive but are my preference. It's had one owner and is a really nice car.
     
  4. stardogs

    stardogs Behavior Nerd

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    I just realized, did you mean cargo area holding folded crates or crates with dogs in them?
     
  5. Taqroy

    Taqroy Active Member

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    I've been eyeballing the Mazdas! Do the hatchbacks have room for a crate?

    Crate with dog! I much prefer them to be crated, especially now that there's an incredibly lickable baby occupying the back seat. I was looking at the Ravs too actually (because of you lol), I'm not a huge fan of how...bloaty they look but I might have to get over it. They do seem like nice reliable vehicles.
     
  6. stardogs

    stardogs Behavior Nerd

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    An older CRV would also be a good option - the new ones have weird sloped corners in the cargo area.

    I think a Ford Escape might work as well, though the mpgs might be on the low side.
     
  7. stardogs

    stardogs Behavior Nerd

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    And I did like the Kia Sorento, though I ended up with the RAV because the RAV has a better reliability history and I put about 36k miles on my vehicle every year. lol
     
  8. noludoru

    noludoru Bored Now.

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    Yes, and we can test it out with mine if you'd like. I have some CPOs on the lot right now that will fit the bill decently well. Example: http://www.groovemazda.com/certified/Mazda/2012-Mazda-Mazda3-558dd0bd0a0a006458e882fced689f38.htm

    Mazda3s are freaking amazing.

    Ravs are another nice car, but only one with a previously built transmission. Or a manual transmission. Ask Zoom about it. CRVs are their direct competitor - nice cars, over all very reliable, good choice. I'd also look at a Forester or two with Zoom: http://www.grooveauto.com/used/Subaru/2004-Subaru-Forester-6ba64e450a0a00640db0961490d21257.htm I feel like a legacy wagon would work, too. TONS of rear seat room and cargo room. http://www.grooveauto.com/used/Subaru/2005-Subaru-Legacy-19576aff0a0a00640db09614e5f69e93.htm

    I'm going to throw this out there. Mazda6, previous generation, hatchback. http://www.grooveauto.com/used/Mazda/2005-Mazda-Mazda6-f52e2ccb0a0a00641150e700e9f6adaa.htm This particular one is finance-able just in case that's a concern, and a hatchback so you have tons of space. If you like the 3 but are concerned about space, this will alleviate that immediately. Also it's really nice and I like driving it, so someone from chaz needs to buy it. :eek:

    Are you open to compact cars (think Yaris, Versa, etc)? You can get a nearly new, rather nice compact hatch for 12.
     
  9. Samantha's pet

    Samantha's pet New Member

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    I drive a 2010 VW GTI. It's cute and sporty. The back seats can lay down for extra storage. what I have done is leave Chloe's seat up (obviously) When she is with me and lay down the two seats next to her and that allows me to fit a medium dog crate with dog in it beside her in the back. It definitely wouldn't do 2 crates but man that car has so much more room inside than you would ever think from looking at the outside. I love that it has the option to fold the back seats down. And it's a turbo so it gets good mileage.
     
  10. smkie

    smkie pointer/labrador/terrier Staff Member

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    I thought you really lost your car. It happened to Hyia and I once, it was horrible. Good luck with your shopping.
     
  11. stardogs

    stardogs Behavior Nerd

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    My husband has a regular Mazda3 he loves - it does seem like the back seat might be tight for a carseat, especially a rearfacing convertible one, so I like the idea of a 6 hatchback!

    I did like the Nissan Versa I drove, but you won't be able to fit two medium crates with the back seat in use, probably only one. There's a review with pics on Four Paw Drive.

    A Yaris might be a decent option, but I haven't put my hands on one yet. I think MandyPug has one she loves, though!

    Whatever you do, DON'T rely just on measurements, take your crates with you! I have a friend who just changed vehicles, measured everything, and yet her (really heavy duty and expensive) crates don't fit. :(

    Also, if you find a smaller vehicle that meets your needs but the crates don't quiiiite fit, it might be worth looking into something like the variocage if buying the smaller vehicle gives you more wiggle room financially. That's what happened with my RAV - the SUV crates would have fit better in a larger vehicle (I was looking at the 4Runner pretty seriously), but the cost savings with initial purchase price and gas mileage gave me the 'extra' money to buy the variocage if I went with the RAV. That was a no brainer at that point!
     
  12. Taqroy

    Taqroy Active Member

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    I should definitely should have had this as a requirement in my original post but, this car will eventually need to fit TWO carseats (no, I am not prego but we will have another kid sooner or later) and have room for a crate. >.< Whoops.

    You're freaking awesome, thank you for taking the time to put that together. I'm super interested in the Outback wagons and the Mazda hatchbacks (or wagons but I think those are less common?). As soon as we figure out how we're going to finance this I'm going to be hitting you and Zoom up for sure.

    I'm not into the compacts at all. I'm going to mention it to Matt though because he needs a new car as well and I see no reason for him to not want a compact. Except...he likes to go fast. How are they for speed racers?

    Thanks for the info! I think the venting thread discussion kind of turned me off VW's though lol. A lot of the people I know have had constant issues with them too which is a shame because I've really liked the ones I've driven.

    I looked at the thread title afterwards and thought I should have gone with something different. :p I hope you found your car!

    I can't believe I forgot about your blog! I'm not opposed to wire crates at all if we need to go that route. I just already have the plastic kennel. Lol. I really love the variocage you have but I need something I can take in and out and it doesn't really look...portable.

    I have more to say but people keep interrupting me. I'll be back later.
     
  13. noludoru

    noludoru Bored Now.

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    Yeah, if two carseats are a must, a subcompact car is NOT a good idea. A compact car may not even be the best idea.

    Mandy has a Matrix (yes, I know what all of chaz drives. YES I KNOW I HAVE A PROBLEM).

    My answers in bold.
     
  14. Michiyo-Fir

    Michiyo-Fir New Member

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    We have a GTI and a Jetta Sportwagen.

    In terms of the GTI, the hatch is very small so unless you want to put down the back seats, it doesn't fit very much.

    The Jetta Sportwagen (my car) has a huge hatch. I can fit 2 medium wire crates in the back without having to put down the back seats. I recommend it. But it's not the fastest.
     
  15. meepitsmeagan

    meepitsmeagan Meagan & The Cattle Dog Crew

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    I don't have anything constructive for this thread. I just want to know if I'm cool enough for Nolu to know what I'm driving. :p
     
  16. MandyPug

    MandyPug Sport Model Pug

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    I have a 2007 versa, love :)
     
  17. Psyfalcon

    Psyfalcon Fishies!

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    Outback. More space than most SUVs, better mpg, but depending on what year/miles you want, you may have to look around to find one in your price bracket.
     
  18. Zoom

    Zoom Twin 2.0

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    Bring your crates and car seat along! I have a couple things that should work right now and don't stress about figuring out your financing beforehand ;)
     
  19. LostAndConfused

    LostAndConfused Active Member

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    Taqroy thanks for the thread. With my current car issues, I'm doing the whole car search thing, long term plans have me looking at similar requirements.
     
  20. Dekka

    Dekka Just try me..

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    I love the matrix!

    But have you looked at the kia souls? They have good reviews and you can get a great deal on them. Loads of room in a tiny package.

    The Mitsubishi rvrs are amazing. Like my dream dog shlepping vehicle!

    Lots of good suggestions in here!
     

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