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Old 03-19-2012, 12:54 AM
 
Location: Jewel Lake (Sagle) Idaho
21,912 posts, read 13,963,446 times
Reputation: 11949

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Does anyone have any experience with high (relatively speaking) 4x4 or AWD vehicles. I commute 85 miles a day, so MPG is important to me. I also live in snow country, up a gravel road that is often not plowed when I go to work. Worse, we get lots of ice and hardpack. A 2wd vehicle is pretty helpless up here.

So...what is a decent commuter 4x4? I had a nice 4x4 diesel pickup that was great in the snow...but too danged expensive to drive every day. SO I added a different car for summer use. That brings on a second set of insurance payments and registration...things I want to avoid.

I have an Xterra now...I like the vehicle but the mileage is poor for a mid sized vehicle (~20, barely). I'd like to avoid Subaru. My wife had an '07 Outback, the ergonomics wern't good for a tall guy (low-cut doors, small footwells) and the mileage was only so-so (mid 20s). How about the Suzukis? Are they any good? Or do you have anything eles to suggest?

My wife has a Murano...it's pretty nice, comfortable and gets pretty decent mileage (mid 20s, about the same as the Outback). Not great...but not bad, given that it's a decent sized vehidle. I'd really like to fine one that will break into the 30s on a highway drive.

Last edited by Toyman at Jewel Lake; 03-19-2012 at 01:11 AM..
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Old 03-19-2012, 01:01 AM
 
Location: Columbia, California
6,662 posts, read 23,842,117 times
Reputation: 5019
I am getting 27 mpg in a '08 Ford Explorer Sport Trac with 4x4 and a V8. The V6's actually do not get as good of mileage.
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Old 03-19-2012, 10:25 AM
 
Location: Woodland Park, CO
3,124 posts, read 8,551,143 times
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2012 Subaru Impreza is rated at 27/36MPG, highest of any AWD/4X4 vehicle.

Suzuki makes the Kazashi that gets almost 30MPG. I would rather have the Subuaru Legacy for the same money.

If you drive 85 miles 5x a week, I would get the Impreza if you can fit in it. The mileage you drive is going to add up if driving something that gets 27MPG vs 36MPG.
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Old 03-19-2012, 10:27 AM
 
Location: Woodland Park, CO
3,124 posts, read 8,551,143 times
Reputation: 2446
Quote:
Originally Posted by ferretkona View Post
I am getting 27 mpg in a '08 Ford Explorer Sport Trac with 4x4 and a V8. The V6's actually do not get as good of mileage.
EPA rates your car at 13 city and 19 highway, 15 combined. No way you are getting 27, unless going down a long hill while in neutral.
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Old 03-19-2012, 10:59 AM
 
14,724 posts, read 32,051,384 times
Reputation: 14107
Quote:
Originally Posted by PokerMunkee View Post
2012 Subaru Impreza is rated at 27/36MPG, highest of any AWD/4X4 vehicle.

Suzuki makes the Kazashi that gets almost 30MPG. I would rather have the Subuaru Legacy for the same money.

If you drive 85 miles 5x a week, I would get the Impreza if you can fit in it. The mileage you drive is going to add up if driving something that gets 27MPG vs 36MPG.
The new Impreza would have been my recommendation as well. Easily the best AWD vehicle in terms of MPG by a long shot and you aren't giving up anything on the AWD side as it is the same permanent system Subaru has always used.
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Old 03-19-2012, 01:31 PM
 
Location: Planet Eaarth
8,957 posts, read 15,820,448 times
Reputation: 7193
Quote:
Originally Posted by Toyman at Jewel Lake View Post
Does anyone have any experience with high (relatively speaking) 4x4 or AWD vehicles. I commute 85 miles a day, so MPG is important to me. I also live in snow country, up a gravel road that is often not plowed when I go to work. Worse, we get lots of ice and hardpack. A 2wd vehicle is pretty helpless up here.

So...what is a decent commuter 4x4? I had a nice 4x4 diesel pickup that was great in the snow...but too danged expensive to drive every day. SO I added a different car for summer use. That brings on a second set of insurance payments and registration...things I want to avoid.

I have an Xterra now...I like the vehicle but the mileage is poor for a mid sized vehicle (~20, barely). I'd like to avoid Subaru. My wife had an '07 Outback, the ergonomics wern't good for a tall guy (low-cut doors, small footwells) and the mileage was only so-so (mid 20s). How about the Suzukis? Are they any good? Or do you have anything eles to suggest?

My wife has a Murano...it's pretty nice, comfortable and gets pretty decent mileage (mid 20s, about the same as the Outback). Not great...but not bad, given that it's a decent sized vehidle. I'd really like to fine one that will break into the 30s on a highway drive.
Into the 30mpg range for an AWD or 4X4? Good luck with that!

As they say "The deck is stacked against you" when comes to MPG and where you live/work. So your only choice is to buy the most reliable vehicle with cash to avoid all the other cost of where you live/work leaving only fuel cost to pay.
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Old 03-19-2012, 02:07 PM
 
Location: Sacramento
12,626 posts, read 13,383,664 times
Reputation: 11038
More like you stacked the deck against yourself. Impreza would be my pick as well. Corolla Matrix or Suziki SX4 or Kizashi maybe.
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Old 03-19-2012, 02:17 PM
 
Location: We_tside PNW (Columbia Gorge) / CO / SA TX / Thailand
18,132 posts, read 33,599,337 times
Reputation: 16607
You could import a VW TDI AWD (Passat / Golf) in pieces and reassemble as a 'kit-car' (There are a few in USA done this way).

Or build one from parts (you can get a drive train in Canada)

The converted TDI Vanagon Synchros get ~ 35 mpg, and it is EZ to make a Quantum Synchro Turbo Diesel (~40mpg)

Or find a used Saturn Vue or AWD Toy Matrix / Pontiac Vibe

I have not been impressed with the subies I have had to fix. But many folks drive them to 250k+
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Old 03-19-2012, 04:34 PM
 
Location: Mtns of Waynesville,NC & Nokomis, FL
3,832 posts, read 6,846,159 times
Reputation: 4623
All good rec'ds, but it will take a lot of miles driven, at a 'better' mpg, to cover the cost of the new ride, imo. And, whatever you have or get, I would think you run dedicated snow tires all winter season.
GL, mD
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Old 03-19-2012, 05:24 PM
 
24,016 posts, read 35,206,343 times
Reputation: 31156
Car Finder Results

At the drop down to the right for sorting choose Mileage high to low
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