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Let's talk about cars

Let's talk about cars

Old Sep 24th 2020, 5:00 am
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Default Re: Let's talk about cars

Originally Posted by Boiler
My local electricity association initially anyway was supplied with hydro electric, mega wind farms in Colorado, also a major manufacturing center for wind turbines. I have a family member who makes them. But that is just apart of the equation. I am not off grid but quite a few people I know are, PV better up here.
Many coal plants in Colorado with long term contracts with the Powder River Basin.

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Old Sep 25th 2020, 6:04 am
  #7547  
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Default Re: Let's talk about cars

Hi folks, anyone car to chime in on a car recommendation (I am FAR from being a petrolhead myself).

Context:
  • Looking for reliable, comfortable daily commuter
  • $10k budget +/- 20%, with <80k miles on it
  • I usually only buy Toyota or Honda, but willing to hear other reliable options
  • I'm in Southern California (expensive gas), and will be doing approx 70 miles p/day on the freeway, with about an hour of stop/go traffic
  • Weekends I have a beater truck already so moving stuff not an issue, but will occasionally transport three young kids
  • Looking for 1. Reliability; 2. Comfort; 3. Economical; 4. Safe
  • Plan to drive for 5+years


My inclination is to check out Civics/Accords. Owned a Prius previously and loved it, but concerned about the fuel cells on used Prius' >100k miles. Thoughts?
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Old Sep 25th 2020, 6:22 am
  #7548  
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Default Re: Let's talk about cars

Originally Posted by username.exe
Hi folks, anyone car to chime in on a car recommendation (I am FAR from being a petrolhead myself).

Context:
  • Looking for reliable, comfortable daily commuter
  • $10k budget +/- 20%, with <80k miles on it
  • I usually only buy Toyota or Honda, but willing to hear other reliable options
  • I'm in Southern California (expensive gas), and will be doing approx 70 miles p/day on the freeway, with about an hour of stop/go traffic
  • Weekends I have a beater truck already so moving stuff not an issue, but will occasionally transport three young kids
  • Looking for 1. Reliability; 2. Comfort; 3. Economical; 4. Safe
  • Plan to drive for 5+years


My inclination is to check out Civics/Accords. Owned a Prius previously and loved it, but concerned about the fuel cells on used Prius' >100k miles. Thoughts?
If you're looking at Civic/Accord you might want to take in the Corolla/Camry option as well. No personal experience, but a colleague got a Camry hybrid last fall and has been v impressed with confort and fuel economy so far. No reports on reliability concerns, either. He's owned Toyotas previously (but I don't know how long ago), said that this one seemed a a leap ahead in terms of "impression of quality."
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Old Sep 25th 2020, 6:33 am
  #7549  
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Default Re: Let's talk about cars

Originally Posted by Oakvillian
If you're looking at Civic/Accord you might want to take in the Corolla/Camry option as well. No personal experience, but a colleague got a Camry hybrid last fall and has been v impressed with confort and fuel economy so far. No reports on reliability concerns, either. He's owned Toyotas previously (but I don't know how long ago), said that this one seemed a a leap ahead in terms of "impression of quality."
That's really interesting, I hadn't known that there were now hybrid versions of Civic/Camry etc. Will certainly take a look. Not sure how well-founded my concerns are on the fuel cells on used hybrids with miles on them, though.
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Old Sep 25th 2020, 6:54 am
  #7550  
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Default Re: Let's talk about cars

Originally Posted by username.exe
That's really interesting, I hadn't known that there were now hybrid versions of Civic/Camry etc. Will certainly take a look. Not sure how well-founded my concerns are on the fuel cells on used hybrids with miles on them, though.
I'm in Canada, but I can't imagine the hybrid "regular" sedans are not available in SoCal! Your gas may be expensive by US standards, but I think we got you beat there
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Old Sep 25th 2020, 6:59 am
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Default Re: Let's talk about cars

You're right, used to live in Vancouver so I know how that goes lol.
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Old Sep 25th 2020, 7:00 am
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Default Re: Let's talk about cars

Originally Posted by username.exe
That's really interesting, I hadn't known that there were now hybrid versions of Civic/Camry etc. Will certainly take a look. Not sure how well-founded my concerns are on the fuel cells on used hybrids with miles on them, though.
My standard answer would be Honda Accord/Civic, or Toyota Camry, as others have said. Nice and boring, and plentiful, thus not too pricey. Very common, which tends to lead to cheaper maintenance. I had two Accords when I first got here (80s) and they served me extremely well; paid $3500 for first and $5500 for second, lasted me 10 years between them with 100 miles commute/day. The Accord is comfy and quiet - the most important elements of a car, for me. But I will say, my g/f's Prius is quite an impressive car and gets great mileage (45+). It's surprisingly roomy inside, very practical with a nice hatchback, and history now would suggest quite reliable - you just don't hear much negative press about long-term reliability issues with the hybrid drive. I did a quick search for long-term reliability and Prius ...

https://www.torquenews.com/1083/new-...on%20problems.

I do find the Prius a bit noisy when you 'step on the gas', but - that's not a situation I find myself in that often (on-ramp to freeway when building up speed quickly is my one circumstance). I would guess the used Prius market is pricey, though, given the gas mileage issue. The Camry hybrid has been around a long time and should be fairly easy to find these days. Accord hybrids only existed briefly. Not sure about Civic hybrids in the past.
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Old Sep 25th 2020, 7:46 am
  #7553  
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Default Re: Let's talk about cars

Originally Posted by username.exe
Hi folks, anyone car to chime in on a car recommendation (I am FAR from being a petrolhead myself).

Context:
  • Looking for reliable, comfortable daily commuter
  • $10k budget +/- 20%, with <80k miles on it
  • I usually only buy Toyota or Honda, but willing to hear other reliable options
  • I'm in Southern California (expensive gas), and will be doing approx 70 miles p/day on the freeway, with about an hour of stop/go traffic
  • Weekends I have a beater truck already so moving stuff not an issue, but will occasionally transport three young kids
  • Looking for 1. Reliability; 2. Comfort; 3. Economical; 4. Safe
  • Plan to drive for 5+years


My inclination is to check out Civics/Accords. Owned a Prius previously and loved it, but concerned about the fuel cells on used Prius' >100k miles. Thoughts?
I'm not going to do anything more than agree with you about Hondas/ Accords - we have two - one of which made it to 360,000 miles on it's original clutch before it's second engine slipped it's timing chain and destroyed the engine. Our other one, a coupé, has just made it to 80,000 and is barely run-in. ..... Once things get back to normal I am seriously thinking about rolling the dice again with our old Accord and putting a secondhand engine it it - it would likely last longer than the 64,000 that the so-called "rebuilt" engine achieved.

When looking at hybrid possibilities, take time to do the maths - if you're paying more for the hybrid, how many miles do you have to drive to get your money back? And remember that hybrids have more parts to break and more systems to fail, not to mention that the batteries don't last for ever either. I am convinced that many people are paying more for a hybrid than they will ever save due to reduced gas consumption.

Last edited by Pulaski; Sep 25th 2020 at 9:01 am.
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Old Sep 25th 2020, 8:28 am
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Default Re: Let's talk about cars

Originally Posted by Pulaski
I'm not going to do anything more than agree with you about Hondas/ Accords - we have two - one of which made it to 360,000 miles on it's original clutch before it's second engine slipped it's timing chain and destroyed the engine. Our other one, a coupé, has just made it to 80,000 and is barely run-in. ..... Once things get back to normal I am seriously thinking about rolling the dice again with our old Accord and putting a secondhand engine it it - it would likely last longer than the 64,000 that the so-called "rebuilt" engine achieved.

When looking at hybrid possibilities, take time to do the maths - if you're paying more for the hybrid, how many miles do you have to drive to get your money back? And remember that hybrids have more parts to break and more systems to fail, not to mention that the batteries don't last for ever either. I am convinced that many people are paying more for a hybrid than they will ever save due to reduced gas mileage.
Great points, thank you. What makes the maths complicated is not knowing the point at which the battery goes bad. Is that in three years? Five? Not sure. Driving on California gas though, I'm likely to break even quicker than in other parts of the country.

My colleague also recommended a Hyundai Sonata to me - nice interior apparnetly, same vein as Honda/Toyota, but without the established reputation.

Giving the Accord a good long think today. I like the idea of a little extra room, too.
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Old Sep 25th 2020, 8:32 am
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Default Re: Let's talk about cars

Originally Posted by Steerpike
My standard answer would be Honda Accord/Civic, or Toyota Camry, as others have said. Nice and boring, and plentiful, thus not too pricey. Very common, which tends to lead to cheaper maintenance. I had two Accords when I first got here (80s) and they served me extremely well; paid $3500 for first and $5500 for second, lasted me 10 years between them with 100 miles commute/day. The Accord is comfy and quiet - the most important elements of a car, for me. But I will say, my g/f's Prius is quite an impressive car and gets great mileage (45+). It's surprisingly roomy inside, very practical with a nice hatchback, and history now would suggest quite reliable - you just don't hear much negative press about long-term reliability issues with the hybrid drive. I did a quick search for long-term reliability and Prius ...

https://www.torquenews.com/1083/new-...on%20problems.

I do find the Prius a bit noisy when you 'step on the gas', but - that's not a situation I find myself in that often (on-ramp to freeway when building up speed quickly is my one circumstance). I would guess the used Prius market is pricey, though, given the gas mileage issue. The Camry hybrid has been around a long time and should be fairly easy to find these days. Accord hybrids only existed briefly. Not sure about Civic hybrids in the past.
Great points, will certainly take a look at the Camry hybrid (I guess that's the Toyota equivalent of the Accord?). My one gripe with my Prius was that it was suprisingly sluggish getting on the freeway compared to my wife's RAV4 which is very punchy. (Maybe it was just my car that was sluggish.)

Seems like the Accord is getting the big thumbs-up on here, though.
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Old Sep 25th 2020, 8:32 am
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Default Re: Let's talk about cars

Originally Posted by Pulaski
I'm not going to do anything more than agree with you about Hondas/ Accords - we have two - one of which made it to 360,000 miles on it's original clutch before it's second engine slipped it's timing chain and destroyed the engine. Our other one, a coupé, has just made it to 80,000 and is barely run-in. ..... Once things get back to normal I am seriously thinking about rolling the dice again with our old Accord and putting a secondhand engine it it - it would likely last longer than the 64,000 that the so-called "rebuilt" engine achieved.

When looking at hybrid possibilities, take time to do the maths - if you're paying more for the hybrid, how many miles do you have to drive to get your money back? And remember that hybrids have more parts to break and more systems to fail, not to mention that the batteries don't last for ever either. I am convinced that many people are paying more for a hybrid than they will ever save due to reduced gas mileage.
Yeah, this. I am in minivan territory (don't ask...) but definitely a fan of Honda. My first Odyssey wasn't particularly heavily used, it did 150,000-ish km (a bit shy of 100,000 miles) in 11 years, and it was replaced with a new one only becuase of a sequence of unfortunate circumstances, otherwise I'd probably still have it. It's absolutely bulletrpoof mechanically; if it were a Rolls-Royce it would live up to their power statement (Rolls never quote performance statistics, just that power output is "adequate") and it's surprisingly nice to drive given that it's well north of two tons of automobile...

I don't think hybrids are the answer to anything, for me. Mileage isn't high enough to justify the uplift in cost, and it's not enough of a planet-saver to sway me on that front. I suspect my next vehicle will be a plug-in electric: that's a better environmental option, at least in terms of fuel usage (here, electric = hydro or nuclear, there's no coal and little gas outside of peak hours). My journey to work is only a few km, when I'm not in the office in the basement, so range wouldn't be a problem even in winter time. A hybrid power plant has too many compromises - if it's not fully electric, I'd rather wait until hydrogen fuel cells are commercially viable. A combustion engine whose only exhaust product is water vapour is quite appealing.
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Old Sep 25th 2020, 9:04 am
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Default Re: Let's talk about cars

Originally Posted by username.exe
Great points, will certainly take a look at the Camry hybrid (I guess that's the Toyota equivalent of the Accord?). My one gripe with my Prius was that it was suprisingly sluggish getting on the freeway compared to my wife's RAV4 which is very punchy. (Maybe it was just my car that was sluggish.)

Seems like the Accord is getting the big thumbs-up on here, though.
Well if you've already had a Prius, you know exactly what we are talking about! I no longer care about acceleration per se, but the one time you need it is to get up to speed for a freeway merge. Compared to motorways in UK, US freeways can be remarkably 'tight' when it comes to on-ramp lengths (in urban areas) and you have no choice but to really floor the vehicle if you want to safely merge. I have one merge in the bay area where you have to go up a steep ramp and merge into 70 mph+ traffic in a very short distance. BUT - the Prius can do it, it just 'roars' quite a bit, and it's so quiet in general that this really stands out!

Someone mentioned a Hyundai Sonata; yes, it's the direct competitor to Accord/Camry. Honda / Toyota have such great reputations for reliability that Hyundai (and Kia) have had to really over-deliver in terms of 'spec' and features to try to compete. I have every reason to believe they are up there in the reliability game these days. I personally hate the 'blue light' stuff they had in the ones I've rented, but that's a personal thing! Model for model, I think the Accord has a slightly better 'interior finish' than the Camry, but this is very subjective.

As for Prius reliability, I did a bit of reading and it seems to be remarkably reliable. It makes perfect sense to be concerned, due to the presence of two different power sources, but all the evidence suggests they 'got it right'. I have to say I'm impressed by Toyota overall - they were bold to introduce the Prius and it has been a remarkably successful car. I personally love the 'feel' of a V6 car, and you can get used Accords with V6 engines. Not necessarily the right answer for fuel efficiency, but ... nice drive!
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Old Sep 26th 2020, 9:39 am
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Default Re: Let's talk about cars

Originally Posted by Pulaski
When looking at hybrid possibilities, take time to do the maths - if you're paying more for the hybrid, how many miles do you have to drive to get your money back? And remember that hybrids have more parts to break and more systems to fail, not to mention that the batteries don't last for ever either. I am convinced that many people are paying more for a hybrid than they will ever save due to reduced gas consumption.
For some of us, it's not just about money. It took me a long time to come to the belief that a hybrid was worth considering. What convinced me is twofold. Firstly, they do reduce gas consumption. Given the situation we're in with man-made climate change, I consider that a good thing. Secondly, they do help car manufacturers research and develop electric car technology for a time - hopefully soon - where we go fully electric. I also consider that a good thing. So that's why I went hybrid without actually being concerned about a tradeoff between car cost and fuel saving "cost".
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Old Sep 26th 2020, 9:43 am
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Default Re: Let's talk about cars

Originally Posted by chawkins99
On my truck, you have to catch it while it's 'talking' and adjust the volume. i.e. while it's announcing directions, adjust the volume. It does the same on my wife's car as well.
Ha, that works... partially. I still can't reduce the volume to a level I would prefer. But at least it's a step in the right direction.

So now I'm baffled as to why I can use the car's volume control to reduce the volume of music to any level I choose. So what is going on differently between Google Maps and my iPhone's Music App??
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Old Sep 26th 2020, 10:04 am
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Default Re: Let's talk about cars

Check out car rental resale, Avis,Hertz etc. With travel down they may be trying to unload cars and a good deal on a low mileage car may be possible.
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