mtn
mtn MegaDork
2/24/20 11:29 a.m.

I need to drive into the office more and more than I used to, and the commute+premium is getting to the point where I'm considering getting something easier on the wallet. I don't know that I'm actually going to make a move here, but am beginning the brainstorming process at least. 

 

Lets get it out of the way that if I were sensible, I'd get a 2nd Gen Prius and be done with it. But I'm not sensible, because where is the fun in that?

 

So. We're going to go with 5 basic rules for this: 

1: Has to be SAFE, and has to have room for a carseat in the back. I'll lean towards having a rear door, but coupes/convertibles are not entirely out of the question. And we'll mention safe again. I see at least 3 accidents a week on my route, 95% of which are just rear-end collisions with minimal damage, but I don't want to risk it here. 

2: Stickshift. I miss rowing my own gears. Yeah, I know that it isn't the best for MPG anymore. Don't care.

3: Good MPG. Think 25+ city and 30+ highway. Preferably better than that. 

4: Under $5,000

5: Not a Corolla (Matrix is fine), not a Saturn (Wife's only rule about cars)

 

Less important, but still a factor, is the luxuriousness. I'm a snob. I want leather seats and I want heated seats. By no means a requirement though. 

What do you have? 

DukeOfUndersteer
DukeOfUndersteer UltimaDork
2/24/20 11:36 a.m.

My personal favorite car that I had that fits the requirements is the Mazda Protege5. It was fun with the manual, got great fuel mileage, under $5k.

79rex
79rex Reader
2/24/20 11:39 a.m.

Id try to find the best honda fit out there that meets my price.  Its hard to find a better economical daily IMO.

mtn
mtn MegaDork
2/24/20 11:57 a.m.
79rex said:

Id try to find the best honda fit out there that meets my price.  Its hard to find a better economical daily IMO.

I completely forgot that the Fit existed.

z31maniac
z31maniac MegaDork
2/24/20 12:01 p.m.

Since you mentioned rowing gears, I was going to suggest a Leaf. 

I've been considering one for myself because of my weekly driving habits. 

captdownshift
captdownshift GRM+ Memberand UltimaDork
2/24/20 12:09 p.m.

C30, V50, S40

clutchsmoke
clutchsmoke UltraDork
2/24/20 12:14 p.m.
captdownshift said:

C30, V50, S40

There should be a fair amount of these that meet your hypothetical criteria.

Mr_Asa
Mr_Asa GRM+ Memberand HalfDork
2/24/20 12:21 p.m.

Didn't Dieselgate bring VW TDi prices down? Would that be under $5k?

MadScientistMatt
MadScientistMatt PowerDork
2/24/20 12:25 p.m.

Car seats can take up a lot of room. A stick-shift Accord would be an obvious choice, if a bit mundane. (Or maybe not.) Other things you might be able to find in your budget with a large back seat and a stick:

  • BMW 5 series
  • 3rd gen Mitsubishi Eclipse - they're surprisingly big.
  • Ford Fusion / Mazda 6 / Mercury Milan
  • Something Volvo?
dculberson
dculberson MegaDork
2/24/20 12:43 p.m.

Can I go for owning the GS430 three times?!

I like the C30 suggestion, as long as you don't need to haul the kid and another adult at the same time. Those things look cool and they're available in a stick and are reasonably luxurious. I don't think they'll hit your MPG goals, though - the best models are 21 city / 30 highway.

There are just so few stick shift cars made these days, especially "regular" practical cars, that it's hard to think of any reasonable low budget ones that I'd take a risk on. The Germans are out for me, due to maintenance and reliability issues.

An Accord sedan or coupe might be the one. The 4-cylinder manuals are at 22 city / 30 highway. I know the 2003+ gained size and luxuriousness. I don't know if the 4-cylinder manual models will mate up with the luxury features, though.

dean1484
dean1484 GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
2/24/20 12:45 p.m.

Camery or Avelon

 

CobraSpdRH
CobraSpdRH Reader
2/24/20 1:44 p.m.

Would a high mileage 1st gen TSX with a manual be in that budget yet? I bleive it would at least be close.

mtn
mtn MegaDork
2/24/20 1:53 p.m.
dculberson said:

Can I go for owning the GS430 three times?!

 

I’m actually not sure I’m going to sell it, even if I do go through with a commutermobile. I want to keep 2 automatic cars in the fleet, in case my wife needs it.  

John Welsh
John Welsh Mod Squad
2/24/20 2:11 p.m.

300hp/rated for 30mpg on the hyw. 

Powar
Powar GRM+ Memberand UltraDork
2/24/20 2:35 p.m.

You just described a 9-3 or 9-5. Personally, I think the '08-11 9-3 is the better car, but they're all cheap and readily available with manuals. Didn't you already ask about these? They're still the right answer.

Woody
Woody GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
2/24/20 2:42 p.m.

Accord Sport. 

FuzzWuzzy
FuzzWuzzy HalfDork
2/24/20 2:55 p.m.

Go with the i4 Accord and you should be able to find an EX or EX-L with a stick. Also won't have to worry about the timing belt in the v6.

Or go for the TSX; the fancier i4 Accord. Or the TL-S; the fancier v6 Accord.

Matrix XRS/Vibe GT could both be had with the 2ZZ/6spd. Zippy little things and still great MPG.

KyAllroad (Jeremy)
KyAllroad (Jeremy) UltimaDork
2/24/20 3:04 p.m.
Powar said:

You just described a 9-3 or 9-5. Personally, I think the '08-11 9-3 is the better car, but they're all cheap and readily available with manuals. Didn't you already ask about these? They're still the right answer.

Quoting to drive home the point.  Go find the best Saab in the area (4 cylinder turbo, not the V-6) and buy it.  Very nice, nice to drive and safer than anything else.

mtn
mtn MegaDork
2/24/20 3:10 p.m.
KyAllroad (Jeremy) said:
Powar said:

You just described a 9-3 or 9-5. Personally, I think the '08-11 9-3 is the better car, but they're all cheap and readily available with manuals. Didn't you already ask about these? They're still the right answer.

Quoting to drive home the point.  Go find the best Saab in the area (4 cylinder turbo, not the V-6) and buy it.  Very nice, nice to drive and safer than anything else.

Don't tempt me. I miss the 9-5 that I had in college. 

Fueled by Caffeine
Fueled by Caffeine MegaDork
2/24/20 3:36 p.m.

hello.. is it me you are looking for..

https://chicago.craigslist.org/wcl/cto/d/villa-park-2010-honda-civic-si/7081130095.html

 

200 hp.. lsd.. 6 spd.

Fueled by Caffeine
Fueled by Caffeine MegaDork
2/24/20 3:48 p.m.
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