#1 Posted by JasonR86 (9999 posts) -

So I'm looking to buy a new car but need a little advice. Below, I'll list what I need, what I would want, and the cars that I'm currently looking at. I can pay up to $25,000 US.

What I Need

-Good MPG.

-Fun to drive.

-Reliable.

-Practical.

-I would like a smaller car but not would not be opposed to a bigger sedan. I just don't want an SUV or a truck.

-It needs to be used. I've bought enough used cars in my life.

What I Want

-A quick car. It doesn't need to be fast per say but I would like it to be peppy.

-I don't want to break the bank every time I make an insurance payment.

-I would like it to look good.

What I'm Looking At Currently

-2013 Dodge Dart.

This car is the US version of the Alfa Romeo Giulietta. It has a very nice interior and offers a lot for the price. The MPG isn't great but the driving range is very good. The car looks really nice too. It's not exactly peppy and the best transmission, the manual, isn't very good. But it handles really well, is spacious, and practical.

-2013 Ford Focus

This car is great to drive, peppy, and looks really nice. The interior is pretty nice too but it doesn't have as many options as the Dart. The MPG is ok but the driving range isn't as good as the Dart. The backseat is a joke and it isn't very spacious.

-2013 Ford Mustang (V6)

This car is great to drive, is very fast, and looks great. It isn't as practical as the other two but it isn't as impractical as one might think. The MPG is fine and the driving range is between the Focus and the Dart. The interior is nice but lacks the options of the Dart.

So that's what I'm looking at. What do the rest of you think of my picks currently? Am I over-looking something?

#2 Edited by AlexW00d (6697 posts) -

I dunno whether you even get it over there, but the Scirocco sounds exactly what you want, or a Civic Type R. Both small (for American standards anyway) and both have 2 litre engines. The engine in the Civic is superb though. Also both have pretty great MPG (again, by American standards)

E: Oh my, there's a 265hp Scirocco. Oh my.

#3 Edited by JasonR86 (9999 posts) -

@AlexW00d said:

I dunno whether you even get it over there, but the Scirocco sounds exactly what you want, or a Civic Type R. Both small (for American standards anyway) and both have 2 litre engines. The engine in the Civic is superb though. Also both have pretty great MPG (again, by American standards)

E: Oh my, there's a 265hp Scirocco. Oh my.

Is the Scirocco the same as a Golf?

EDIT: Nevermind. The Scirocco isn't make in the US. I'll have to look into the Civic.

#4 Edited by rachelepithet (1582 posts) -

.

#5 Edited by AlexW00d (6697 posts) -

@JasonR86 said:

@AlexW00d said:

I dunno whether you even get it over there, but the Scirocco sounds exactly what you want, or a Civic Type R. Both small (for American standards anyway) and both have 2 litre engines. The engine in the Civic is superb though. Also both have pretty great MPG (again, by American standards)

E: Oh my, there's a 265hp Scirocco. Oh my.

Is the Scirocco the same as a Golf?

Same chassis and shit yeah, but it's better. It's a Golf GTI with more cool shit as standard and a much nicer body. Get yourself a DSG cause I know you Americans hate normal gearboxes.

@boocreepyfootdoctor said:

Did you mean "it needs to be NEW... Ive bought enough used cars..."?

Alfa Romeo's are butt of a joke on nearly every series of Top Gear. I'm assuming you are of a certain age, say, drinking age at least if you're buying a new $25K car on your own. That Dart looks like a 16 year old's car. Like a Civic, Golf, Integra, etc.

V6 Mustang... meh. Get the V8 or even a special edition like GT350 or Boss a couple years old for the same price, or better, fucking get a well to do original 1964-68 one for that money. Anyways, a lighter, aerodynamic, more modern Mustang, one whose turbo V6 will be up to par both horsepower and MPG-wise to today's upmarket sedans, is coming soon.

Man 16 year olds can afford Golfs, Integras, and Alfas in your country? Jesus christ.

Whilst they don't sell the Integra here, the rest go for a nice amount of money, and you ain't getting kids diving Alfas, no sirree.

E: Also, Americans cars are also the butt of the joke in most episodes of Topgear, so either you skip those entirely - I would - or you just don't bother listening to jokes made on Topgear...

#6 Posted by clumsyninja1 (848 posts) -

Just remember if you are looking for a mustang, they burn lot of gas...

#7 Posted by JasonR86 (9999 posts) -

@boocreepyfootdoctor said:

Did you mean "it needs to be NEW... Ive bought enough used cars..."?

Alfa Romeo's are butt of a joke on nearly every series of Top Gear. I'm assuming you are of a certain age, say, drinking age at least if you're buying a new $25K car on your own. That Dart looks like a 16 year old's car. Like a Civic, Golf, Integra, etc.

V6 Mustang... meh. Get the V8 or even a special edition like GT350 or Boss a couple years old for the same price, or better, fucking get a well to do original 1964-68 one for that money. Anyways, a lighter, aerodynamic, more modern Mustang, one whose turbo V6 will be up to par both horsepower and MPG-wise to today's upmarket sedans, is coming soon.

I have a feeling you and I think about cars differently. Thanks though.

#8 Posted by JasonR86 (9999 posts) -

@clumsyninja1 said:

Just remember if you are looking for a mustang, they burn lot of gas...

The V6 isn't bad. It puts out 305 HP which is nice and gets 19 MPG city (not great) and between 29-31 MPG highway (which I'll take).

#9 Posted by Ghost_Cat (1510 posts) -

I think Subarus are great for the value. All of them are all-wheel drive, so they are peppy to fast, built like tanks, and are practical. Check out the Impreza WRX.

#10 Posted by aurahack (2483 posts) -

Civic probably fits your bill best than anything else comparable.

And while I might get a laugh from others about it, I'd suggest checking out the Kia Rio/Forte. They're a good deal, get great mileage, and I honestly think they've stepped their game up in looks. I love the look of the Forte, and my friend's father recently purchased a white Optima that floored me when I saw it for the first time. I can't say anything about the engine in it since I haven't driven one of the new ones myself, but my friend speaks highly of the engine in his dad's Optima. Give it a look, if anything.

#11 Posted by JasonR86 (9999 posts) -

@Ghost_Cat said:

I think Subarus are great for the value. All of them are all-wheel drive, so they are peppy to fast, built like tanks, and are practical. Check out the Impreza WRX.

They really are. And in every way I should like Subarus. But I fucking hate Subarus and will never buy one because the people who drive them in my State are awful and I don't want to be associated with them. My pride keeps me from buying those cars. Because I'm an idiot.

#12 Posted by Silvergun (298 posts) -

I drive a 2012 VW Passat TDI. It's a diesel so it gets incredible mileage (I average 40-50mpg), and between it being diesel and having a turbocharger, the thing accelerates like nobody's business. It's still a small engine, so you won't be breaking any land speed records, but you're going to beat just about anything on the road going up an on-ramp. The car is gorgeous too, and the interior especially is, in a word, classy. It seriously looks like it belongs in a car costing twice as much.

I've been driving mine for almost a year now, and I love it to death. It's the best car I've ever owned and I think it just destroys anything in its price range (you should be able to get one with the lower level trim package for mid-high $20k). If you want something cheaper, there are TDI Jettas too, but I like the Passat a lot more. Apparently I'm not alone either since it won Car and Driver's car of the year last year.

#13 Posted by chilibean_3 (1807 posts) -

Looks like we have very different opinions when it comes to cars that match your needs and wants! I think the Dart is a piece of junk, the Focus is fine but I'd rather have the Fiesta and while I like the look of the Mustangs I don't think they match most of your needs/wants at all.

Are you only looking at American?

#14 Posted by BirdkeeperDan (411 posts) -

 
Both the Dart and the Focus seem to fit pretty well into what you describe. A Mustang isn't what I'd describe as practical. 

http://www.allpar.com/cars/dodge/dart/comparisons.html  
 
This had most of the information you would need. Based on what you said I'd say the 160hp in the Dart or the Focus gives them the edge. Not sure why the Camry is on there.

#15 Posted by Jace (1134 posts) -

@JasonR86: The Toyota GT-86 fits all of your criteria. It's a Scion or Subaru in the US, but that's a badge fix. It's your best option in my opinion.

#16 Posted by JasonR86 (9999 posts) -

Thanks for the advice everyone.

@chilibean_3 said:

Looks like we have very different opinions when it comes to cars that match your needs and wants! I think the Dart is a piece of junk, the Focus is fine but I'd rather have the Fiesta and while I like the look of the Mustangs I don't think they match most of your needs/wants at all.

Are you only looking at American?

I'm not only looking American. I'm looking at cost versus benefit and these are the options that came to mind in my search. What were you thinking?

#17 Posted by Kidavenger (3859 posts) -
#18 Posted by JasonR86 (9999 posts) -

@Kidavenger said:

If you are seriously considering a mustang, you should also look at http://www.chevrolet.com/camaro-performance-car.html

Seriously though, neither of them will be good on gas at all under real world conditions and they are both pretty pricy on insurance.

I think these are worth a look:

https://www.hyundaiusa.com/vehicles/2013/genesis-coupe/?

http://mazdausa.com/MusaWeb/displayPage.action?pageParameter=modelsMain&vehicleCode=MS3#/home

A lot of it is that I just think it would be cool to own a Mustang.

...I never said I was smart.

#19 Posted by TheVeteran13 (1263 posts) -

Wheels are a plus... this is the extent of my knowledge.

#20 Posted by Kidavenger (3859 posts) -

@JasonR86: Nothing wrong with a mustang, it just doesn't fit your stated criteria.

I infinitely prefer the camaro to the mustang, the base price for a v6 is a bit more, but you get alot more for it.

#21 Edited by chilibean_3 (1807 posts) -

@JasonR86: I'm part of the Subaru cult so I always recommend taking a look there. Looks like you don't want to for your own reasons and that's cool. The new Civics are still a good buy. Don't count out Hyundai as they've just been getting better and better every year. I think Ford is for sure the best thing going for American cars but the only one I'd own besides Mustang is the Fiesta. Super fun little cars. I'm not as impressed with the Camaros as some are even after driving the SS. But RWD is always fun at least. My next commuter car is likely to be a Mazda 3. At least that's the way I'm leaning now but I'm not looking to buy a new DD anytime soon. Mazda is the most supportive company around when is comes to the hobby motorsports crowd and filled with hobby racers. They know what makes a car fun to drive.

Good luck with your search, duder. I hope you don't have to deal with too many slimey car salesmen.

#22 Posted by MAN_FLANNEL (2472 posts) -

Only took 3 posts to get to Top Gear. LOL internet.

#23 Posted by AlexW00d (6697 posts) -

@chilibean_3: I would second the Fiesta as well, but I didn't even know you guys had the Fiesta in America. Really nice cars to drive.

I would also recommend buying a Nissan GTR, but that's a little more expensive than a Fiesta. Heh.

#24 Posted by JasonR86 (9999 posts) -

@AlexW00d said:

@chilibean_3: I would second the Fiesta as well, but I didn't even know you guys had the Fiesta in America. Really nice cars to drive.

I would also recommend buying a Nissan GTR, but that's a little more expensive than a Fiesta. Heh.

Yeah, GTR might break the bank. The Fiesta is nice though.

#25 Edited by BraveToaster (12636 posts) -

Don't get a mustang yet, there's a redesign slated for 2014 or 2015 and it looks a lot better than the current design.

#26 Posted by sissylion (677 posts) -

Find a new dealer and buy used. You may have gotten worked over before, but it's really dumb to buy a new car these days.

#27 Posted by JasonR86 (9999 posts) -

@sissylion said:

Find a new dealer and buy used. You may have gotten worked over before, but it's really dumb to buy a new car these days.

I have had nothing but problems with used cars. I don't trust myself to get a new used car. Fuck used cars.

@BraveToaster said:

Don't get a mustang yet, there's a redesign slated for 2014 or 2015 and it looks a lot better than the current design.

I didn't know that. I'll have to research the new model.

#28 Posted by chilibean_3 (1807 posts) -

@AlexW00d: It's somewhat new over here. We've been waiting for them to make the necessary changes from the Euro style for it to pass all the sillier regulations we have here about headlight shapes and such. Everything I hear is that the euro version is a bit nicer as far as performance but it's still pretty dang good.

#29 Posted by PeasantAbuse (5094 posts) -

Like some other people have said, Civics are great cars. I treat my '04 like complete shit and have still never had any problems with it. I can't vouch for the newer models, but I assume they have only improved.

#30 Posted by PillClinton (3351 posts) -

@JasonR86: Out of your 3 prospects, I'd personally choose the Focus. And if you're interested in the Dart, check out the Subaru BRZ/Scion FR-S (they're basically the same exact car)--sporty, fun to drive, decent mpg, rear wheel drive so you can pull off phat drifts and donuts should the temptation strike you.

#31 Posted by JasonR86 (9999 posts) -

I'm actually leaning towards a Fiesta. But I still like the interior and space the Dart offers. But the Fiesta would be more fun to drive.

#32 Posted by Arkasai (734 posts) -

Woah flash back, didn't you make this thread a few months back? I believe I told you then not to buy new and I still stand by that, because really this will probably be the last gasoline powered vehicle you own.

#33 Posted by JasonR86 (9999 posts) -

@Arkasai said:

Woah flash back, didn't you make this thread a few months back? I believe I told you then not to buy new and I still stand by that, because really this will probably be the last gasoline powered vehicle you own.

I don't think I did. But my memory sucks so who knows? You really think that within the lifespan of one car we'll stop using petrol?

#34 Posted by PillClinton (3351 posts) -

Oh yeah, the Fiesta's available in the US now isn't it? That's a great car too.

@Arkasai: Boy, I hope that's true.

#35 Edited by DoctorWelch (2817 posts) -

Fuck all three of those cars you're looking at. Dodge makes horrible cars, pretty decent trucks, SUVs, and mini vans, but terrible cars. That is, unless you want a muscle car, but that doesn't fit your criteria. Also, don't get a ford. Their cars aren't the worst, but there's really no reason to get a focus or fiesta when there are much more reliable vehicles out there.

If you want something really reliable that gets great gas millage go with a Honda. They are not the best looking cars (the new Accords aren't that bad), but they will last you forever. An Acura is just a more expensive Honda, so if you want something nicer, you could always go for one of those. For what you're looking for though, I see no reason not to get a VW or another German made car. Similarly to Honda/Acura, an Audi is just a more expensive VW, so if you want a little luxury than you can go with one of them too. In all seriousness though, get a MRK 5 Jetta. You can get a manual, 1.8Turbo that pretty much fits all your criteria. Decent size, great gas millage, faster than your average car, extremely reliable, and VW are pretty nice inside and out.

#36 Posted by Arkasai (734 posts) -

@JasonR86 said:

@Arkasai said:

Woah flash back, didn't you make this thread a few months back? I believe I told you then not to buy new and I still stand by that, because really this will probably be the last gasoline powered vehicle you own.

I don't think I did. But my memory sucks so who knows? You really think that within the lifespan of one car we'll stop using petrol?

Might've been someone else but yeah I advise against buying a brand new car today. The average person here has seen the cost of gasoline quadruple in their lifetime, you can extrapolate some pretty scary figures just with some napkin math. Try to find a low mileage luxury car from the late 90's or early 00's like a Lexus, BMW, or Mercedes - this is the best value you can buy in a car today in my opinion when you consider gas mileage, comfort, safety, and other features. May not be your style of car, but it's pretty easy to find cars in this class with low miles and long spec sheets, a lot of times they're owned my older people who are retired or just don't drive much. Those are the winners.

#37 Edited by DirtyEagles (284 posts) -

Mazda 3 or Mazdaspeed3 also subaru impreza

#38 Posted by PillClinton (3351 posts) -

@DoctorWelch: Dunno about what you say in regards to Fords, but I'm inclined to agree with just about everything you wrote about VW. My mother has a Jetta TDI that's been absolutely fantastic for around 3 years now. Reliable, fun (the turbo diesel gives it massive low-end torque, in addition to great mileage), and a really nice fit and finish. I've also test driven the (I think it was 2012, maybe 2011) GTI with a 6 speed manual, and man, is that car a blast. Perhaps my next vehicle, even.

#39 Posted by kishinfoulux (2766 posts) -

@JasonR86 said:

@clumsyninja1 said:

Just remember if you are looking for a mustang, they burn lot of gas...

The V6 isn't bad. It puts out 305 HP which is nice and gets 19 MPG city (not great) and between 29-31 MPG highway (which I'll take).

I'm actually looking to get the V6 Premium myself. I'm not much of a car guy but I just really like the way it looks and test drove one briefly. Was fun and super comfy inside.

#40 Posted by kishinfoulux (2766 posts) -

@BraveToaster said:

Don't get a mustang yet, there's a redesign slated for 2014 or 2015 and it looks a lot better than the current design.

If it's the one I saw then I'd have to disagree. I would imagine a lot of die hard, old school mustang fans would hate it, but what do I know?

Also a lot of hate for buying new it seems. Anyone that's actually in favor of it?

#41 Posted by BraveToaster (12636 posts) -

@kishinfoulux said:

@BraveToaster said:

Don't get a mustang yet, there's a redesign slated for 2014 or 2015 and it looks a lot better than the current design.

If it's the one I saw then I'd have to disagree. I would imagine a lot of die hard, old school mustang fans would hate it, but what do I know?

There's a difference between a concept car and the final design. Even if it does look like what you saw, the OP might like it.

#42 Edited by Ghost_Cat (1510 posts) -

@JasonR86: What? How are the Subaru owners awful? Normally the ones I run into are very nice people.

#43 Posted by iam3green (14368 posts) -

i like my scion tc. i don't like the newer models as they changed the looks of it. i paid/ parents paid $20,000 for it.

mustangs burn gas a lot. i don't think they are very good cars for gas saving.

#44 Posted by LD50 (430 posts) -

@Ghost_Cat said:

I think Subarus are great for the value. All of them are all-wheel drive, so they are peppy to fast, built like tanks, and are practical. Check out the Impreza WRX.

#45 Edited by JasonR86 (9999 posts) -

@Ghost_Cat said:

@JasonR86: What? How are the Subaru owners awful? Normally the ones I run into are very nice people.

It's stupid. It doesn't make sense. But in my state (Washington) every Subaru I get near on the road is driven in the most frustrating ways. Specifically Subaru Outbacks. These drivers are completely oblivious to their surroundings and drive as if no other cars exist on the road. Yet they appear terrified as all hell that everything bad that could happen to them while driving is about to go off at any moment. They drive slow, they never use turn signals, they cut people off and then drive 10 mph below the speed limit. They are fucking awful. And then there's the PR message that is shown to try to sell Subarus. These ads attempt to speak to potential Subaru buyers and they are just so obnoxious. They try to paint Subaru owners as unique, free-spirits who go wherever the wind will take them and their Subarus will take them there. I can't stand those ads. Now the ads aren't necessarily a Subaru owner's fault. BUT, I get the impression that every Subaru owner (in my State mind you) buys completely into this hippy, tree-hugging-ass message. I think this because every Subaru I see is just filled bumper to bumper with these dumbass "make peace not war"-type messages that try to paint the driver as a unique, free-spirit. The idiotic thing, of course, is that these unique messages that are on every inch of the car are on mass produced bumper stickers.

...like I said, this isn't rationale. But I will never buy a Subaru.

#46 Posted by kishinfoulux (2766 posts) -

@BraveToaster said:

@kishinfoulux said:

@BraveToaster said:

Don't get a mustang yet, there's a redesign slated for 2014 or 2015 and it looks a lot better than the current design.

If it's the one I saw then I'd have to disagree. I would imagine a lot of die hard, old school mustang fans would hate it, but what do I know?

There's a difference between a concept car and the final design. Even if it does look like what you saw, the OP might like it.

Fair enough. I really hope they don't keep that look though. It's not even that it's ugly. It just looks like a totally different car.

#47 Posted by BraveToaster (12636 posts) -

@kishinfoulux said:

@BraveToaster said:

@kishinfoulux said:

@BraveToaster said:

Don't get a mustang yet, there's a redesign slated for 2014 or 2015 and it looks a lot better than the current design.

If it's the one I saw then I'd have to disagree. I would imagine a lot of die hard, old school mustang fans would hate it, but what do I know?

There's a difference between a concept car and the final design. Even if it does look like what you saw, the OP might like it.

Fair enough. I really hope they don't keep that look though. It's not even that it's ugly. It just looks like a totally different car.

I like Mustangs, but I'm not really a fan of the current design. The concept images for the redesign look good to me, though.

#48 Posted by AlexW00d (6697 posts) -

@Arkasai said:

@JasonR86 said:

@Arkasai said:

Woah flash back, didn't you make this thread a few months back? I believe I told you then not to buy new and I still stand by that, because really this will probably be the last gasoline powered vehicle you own.

I don't think I did. But my memory sucks so who knows? You really think that within the lifespan of one car we'll stop using petrol?

Might've been someone else but yeah I advise against buying a brand new car today. The average person here has seen the cost of gasoline quadruple in their lifetime, you can extrapolate some pretty scary figures just with some napkin math. Try to find a low mileage luxury car from the late 90's or early 00's like a Lexus, BMW, or Mercedes - this is the best value you can buy in a car today in my opinion when you consider gas mileage, comfort, safety, and other features. May not be your style of car, but it's pretty easy to find cars in this class with low miles and long spec sheets, a lot of times they're owned my older people who are retired or just don't drive much. Those are the winners.

You say this, but dude, fuel in the US is like half the price of fuel in the rest of world. You guys get fuel prices now, that I remember we had like, 15/20 years ago. Lucky bastards.