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Old 05-11-2013, 08:44 AM
 
Location: SE Florida
9,368 posts, read 24,285,316 times
Reputation: 9434

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I have to replace my 2006 Rabbit, a car that I thought I would pass on to my son in a year. I will have to finance. My plan is to get a car in the price-range of the lower-end Dart, pay it off in two or three years, then pass that on to him.

I've owned five VWs, left them for a while, then came back to get the Rabbit. The 2006 Rabbit has been a dog, otherwise I would consider the Jetta.

Please share your top choice and why. I can't stand to car shop and don't want to regret the decision.

If the Dart had a track record for resale, I would go with that, as it has pretty good reviews. I test drove it and it was nice. Not as peppy as my VW, but it has a 2. liter engine and the Elantra is 1.8. Does that make a difference? Is that what affects pickup?

Please don't suggest I get a pre-owned car. I know the drill about losing value the minute you drive a car off the lot, but can't handle car problems. I figure the price differential between new and pre-owned buys me peace of mind.

So, the question is: WWCD do?! Thanks for all your suggestions.
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Old 05-11-2013, 09:01 AM
 
Location: Saint Louis, MO
3,452 posts, read 8,321,947 times
Reputation: 2413
I think i like the dart better than the Elantra. The car has been out for a while overseas, but not stateside...and my biggest worry would be that it's Italian heritage, even though it might be a perfectly reliable vehicle for purchase.

As the owner of a '06 Jetta, do you know what went wrong with your Golf? As you said, your golf was faster than either the Elantra or the Dart, and this is likely from the 5 cylinder engine in the golf vs the smaller 4 cylinder engine in the other two engines. The Golfs engine also isn't overly power, with only 150hp in '06, it did have 170 lbs of torque which comes on just slightly off idle, and makes the car very enjoyable to drive.

We have a '12 Jetta TDI and love it...not as much fun to drive as the 05.5-10 cars, but it's still very enjoyable, and wicked frugal with the diesel engine. If I can keep my foot out of it for the last half tank, i'll be able to average 50 mpg over the entire tank...On my work commute I've managed 60+ mpg twice, 20 mile trip, 95% highway, and babying the car at 59-61 mph...all in all, it's a great car.

Had you ever thought about the Mazda 3?
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Old 05-11-2013, 09:10 AM
 
Location: Central Texas
13,719 posts, read 29,121,370 times
Reputation: 9259
I would shop a Mazda3 or Ford Focus with the Elantra. I think the Dart is a risk. The reviews are not good and it is new.

If somehow you can find a base Civic in the price range you want it should be a top choice too.
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Old 05-11-2013, 09:13 AM
 
Location: Floribama
18,484 posts, read 39,439,859 times
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The Elantra will have the longest warranty, both b2b and powertrain.
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Old 05-11-2013, 09:41 AM
 
Location: SE Florida
9,368 posts, read 24,285,316 times
Reputation: 9434
Quote:
Originally Posted by flynavyj View Post
I think i like the dart better than the Elantra. The car has been out for a while overseas, but not stateside...and my biggest worry would be that it's Italian heritage, even though it might be a perfectly reliable vehicle for purchase.

As the owner of a '06 Jetta, do you know what went wrong with your Golf? As you said, your golf was faster than either the Elantra or the Dart, and this is likely from the 5 cylinder engine in the golf vs the smaller 4 cylinder engine in the other two engines. The Golfs engine also isn't overly power, with only 150hp in '06, it did have 170 lbs of torque which comes on just slightly off idle, and makes the car very enjoyable to drive.

We have a '12 Jetta TDI and love it...not as much fun to drive as the 05.5-10 cars, but it's still very enjoyable, and wicked frugal with the diesel engine. If I can keep my foot out of it for the last half tank, i'll be able to average 50 mpg over the entire tank...On my work commute I've managed 60+ mpg twice, 20 mile trip, 95% highway, and babying the car at 59-61 mph...all in all, it's a great car.

Had you ever thought about the Mazda 3?
Yeah, my son just drove a Jetta and loves it. My friends just bought (leased) a Jetta and a CC and both are great. He was actually looking for a Passat, but the saleman drove him to the Passat in a Jetta and he took the Jetta- LOL!

I started a new thread regarding the whole VW fiasco so I can focus this on what car to buy. But, in short, I don't have confidence in the service departments at the two VW dealerships near me.

//www.city-data.com/forum/newth...stthread&f=178

Was checking out the Mazda 3 online, but am not crazy about the appearance. It has some good reviews, though.

Thanks for your input.
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Old 05-11-2013, 09:50 AM
 
Location: SE Florida
9,368 posts, read 24,285,316 times
Reputation: 9434
Thanks, all. I think I will check out the Elantra today.
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Old 05-11-2013, 10:38 AM
 
Location: Floribama
18,484 posts, read 39,439,859 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Magnolia Bloom View Post
Thanks, all. I think I will check out the Elantra today.
I'd also look at the base Sonata GLS w/ the "popular package" (power seat, fog lights, & alloy wheels), you may be able to get into one of those for not much more than the Elantra. Mine has a smooth ride, and with 198hp the power is there when I need it.
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Old 05-11-2013, 10:47 AM
 
Location: Out in the Badlands
10,421 posts, read 10,147,677 times
Reputation: 7787
Honda Civic?
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Old 05-11-2013, 10:48 AM
 
Location: Kent, Washington
10,254 posts, read 20,664,252 times
Reputation: 10374
I think the Focus might be the best of the bunch; supposedly more refined and better handling and performence than the Elantra. In any event I enjoy my 2012 Focus a great deal; smooth, quiet, great handling, responsive and lively engine and all day comfortable on road trips. We're driving from Chicago to Myrtle Beach tomorrow.
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Old 05-11-2013, 11:12 AM
 
Location: Floribama
18,484 posts, read 39,439,859 times
Reputation: 17958
I rented a '13 Focus SE recently and I didn't like it. It felt like I was driving an egg, and the interior seemed very narrow.
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