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Old 02-09-2020, 06:36 PM   #1
deevergote
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It's new-ish car shopping time again!

Hey everyone!
Sorry I haven't been posting much. I'm here many times a day keeping an eye on things, but I haven't been as active as I once was. That's changing, I hope!
The last year and a half has been nonstop craziness... some good, some bad, and some just plain exhausting. Things are finally on the upswing, though.

Anyway, part of the craziness is that I just started a new job. This job is 30+ miles away, all high-speed highway driving. Unlike my last job, with a commute that involved a ton of traffic, this job is quick and easy!
When I got my last job, I picked up my current 05 Accord Hybrid. It's nice enough, but it's pretty beat up. I like the power, the fuel economy is acceptable, and it's reasonably comfortable... but I think it might be time to step it up.

I'm currently exploring my options for something to replace the old Accord. The CTS-V might be sold to help fund whatever I settle on, which means I'll have more cash to work with.

If I sell the CTS-V, I'm thinking I can spend $20,000-$22,000. If I don't sell the CTS-V, then probably $10,000-$12,000. I'm expecting to get $2,500 for the Accord.

Here's what I'm looking for:
-30+mpg (I can skew heavy on the highway mpg ratings, since the majority of my travels will be at 65+mph.) I'm not opposed to hybrid or diesel.
-Reliability. Sadly, that means no Alfa Romeo for me!
-Comfort. Seriously. I want to drive a couch to work.
-Noise insulation. Going hand in hand with comfort... I want a quiet, serene ride to and from work. I've never really had this in a car, and I'd like to experience an isolated cabin for once!
-Attractiveness. I don't simply want an appliance. I want something pretty. I know that's wholly subjective.
-Power. I don't need a ton... but I'll be merging onto a 2 lane highway where people are regularly going 80+ in both lanes... so I need to be able to get up to speed! Most modern cars will probably meet my needs... but I just want to put that out there.
-Newer. I don't plan to buy new, but I want something fairly current. Ideally, something current-generation, or recently departed last-generation. Depending on the car, 2012 is the absolute oldest I'd consider.

Bonus:
- Fancy features - I don't need much, but I at least want Bluetooth connectivity. I could always add aftermarket stuff to get the cool features, but it's better if a car just comes with them! Again, probably not hard to do in a newer car.
- Prestige - A fancy badge isn't a necessity... but anyone who has read my threads on this topic in the past knows that I'm a sucker for a luxury brand.
- Manual transmission. It's not an absolute necessity, but I wouldn't mind a stick again. I opted for an automatic for my traffic-clogged commute to my old job, but it is no longer a necessity.
- CPO warranty. Again, not necessary... but since I'm still looking at used cars, CPO gives me near-new protection, which is nice.

Handling doesn't matter. It can handle like a moose on ice for all I care.
FWD, RWD, AWD... doesn't matter.
I'm not looking to modify whatever I get. I still have the Miata for that, and I intend to get at least one or two other project cars down the line.

I definitely DO NOT want another Accord, and likewise, no Camry. I've had enough of Accords, and even though the last two generations have been fantastic, I just want to get away from them this time around! The Camry has never appealed to me, and while it definitely meets practically every one of my wants, I just... can't.

Currently, my sensible side is telling me to get a Mazda6. 2017-2018 model years are well within my target price range. Mazda isn't a luxury brand, but they've REALLY stepped up their game. To get a really good one, though, I'll need to sell the Caddy... and it hurts to dump my hotrod Cadillac for a Mazda sedan that doesn't even make 200hp.

My less sensible side is considering hybrid and/or diesel models from BMW, Lexus, Mercedes Benz, Infiniti, and Audi.

Sorry for the long rant! Can anyone help me brainstorm?
I'm open to suggestions, personal experiences, and pretty pictures.
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Old 02-09-2020, 09:56 PM   #2
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Comfort, attractiveness, power, newer. I'm reading that it looks like noise insulation and reliability are there. Ballistic door panels make up for the lack of mpgs. Plus, people in front of you are likely to get out of your way, further easing your commute.

https://denver.craigslist.org/cto/d/...071552124.html

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Old 02-09-2020, 11:33 PM   #3
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Toyota Avalon, Lincoln just about anything, Lexus IS250/200T or ES350, MMC ILX, pre-MMC TLX, base model Cadillac ATS.

My initial though before you established your year limit was "used LS400/430/460", but you probably can't get one that new on your budget.
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Old 02-10-2020, 12:05 AM   #4
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As I read this, it sounds like a newish Mazda 6 with the turbo engine would fit most of the parameters. They haven't paired the engine with a manual in that car though.




As an obscure suggestion, the Infiniti M56, might fit most of the prerequisites also. It is kinda an acquired taste aesthetically and the Infiniti brand equity seems to be eroding at an alarming pace these days. The V8 variant likely will be thirsty as well.

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Old 02-10-2020, 12:11 AM   #5
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Forgot to add: Caddy XTS.

If you want isolation, IMO, you are looking at Lexus, Caddy or Lincoln. Maybe certain years of Benz, but that could get a lot more expensive.
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Old 02-10-2020, 01:03 AM   #6
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I recently bought a new 2019 insight and am in love
What ever happened to your cb7?
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Old 02-10-2020, 10:19 AM   #7
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I'd go Lexus as well....

If you want to get divorced...
335d
265hp
424lb-ft
35+ mpg
Prestige-ish
*Reliability
Comfort
Fun
Torque
Diesel noises

*Once you do a delete, there's nothing else to really break except traction. If you do a tune, you can get 600 wtq and about 40 mpg. Make sure you can still get registered with a delete and you're golden.
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Old 02-10-2020, 12:22 PM   #8
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A Honda Fit.

The Mazda 6 seems very appealing. You can actually find a current gen in manual, but I'm sure its a matter of finding one. It was on the base model up until last year and who knows how many are out there.

https://www.caranddriver.com/news/a2...l-killed-2019/


The Acura ILX was also available in manual at one point if you don't mind one of those. Not sure how isolated it'll be for you though.

I didn't mind the previous generation (2011-2019) VW Passat. The GT was one of my favorites and got okay highway mileage if you didn't thrash it. Find a <'15 TDI and you can get up to 42 mpg. IMO it was a decent couch.
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Old 02-10-2020, 05:06 PM   #9
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2015 Buick Regal GS manual. You can thank me later.



or 2017 Chevrolet Caprice PPV (Unmarked Detective Model - for the civilian in you)

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Old 02-11-2020, 11:24 PM   #10
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I vote for an x5 diesel and get it deleted.
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Old 02-12-2020, 05:26 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CyborgGT View Post
Comfort, attractiveness, power, newer. I'm reading that it looks like noise insulation and reliability are there. Ballistic door panels make up for the lack of mpgs. Plus, people in front of you are likely to get out of your way, further easing your commute.

https://denver.craigslist.org/cto/d/...071552124.html


I like these. Just so you guys know, on these they can have a stretched timing chain. Once the tensioner gets maxed out or it jumps a tooth on a cam gear it's a pretty bad deal. You get a CEL for it before hand but some sellers can hide it by clearing the code. The SHO 3.5 EcoBoost I guess isn't as notorious for this as the F series 3.5 EcoBoost but it does happen. No worries though if you want one, from what I've read just give it a good test drive and check for stored codes or a pending code. I like the SHO and might purchase one some day. From what I've read this is about the only thing to look for in the new SHO that isn't obvious or might be easily hidden from a potential buyer.
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Old 02-12-2020, 05:52 PM   #12
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The newer Mazda 6 can be had pretty cheap from what I'm seeing with the 2.5turbo option.

I'm not a fan of the exterior styling, but the interior design is excellent, barring the terrible infotainment.

Also - don't sleep on the Hyundai Genesis (before they spun off the brand). I think it still looks pretty sharp and the interior rivals mid-range luxury marques.
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Old 02-12-2020, 07:31 PM   #13
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Another option you could do would be the new 2018+ Acura RLX Hybrid. Has the NSX drive train but swapped around. Not as much power obviously but the rear has the electric motors to push the car around. I don't think it was offered in a manual. It might just be worth checking out as you would have an almost new car.

Hybrid models feature the VCM capability as well, with an added start-stop system to boost fuel economy further as well as the ability to operate entirely on electric power up to 58 miles per hour with light throttle usage. The hybrid also uses a 7-speed dual clutch transmission using an integrated 35 kW (47 hp) electric motor, with each rear wheel being powered by a 27-kilowatt (36 hp) electric motor, with 2 rear electric motors total. This setup gives the hybrid a torque vectoring all-wheel drive system with rear wheels strictly electrically powered.

A 72-cell 1.3 kWh 66 pound lithium-ion battery pack is placed behind the rear seat. Total system power output on hybrid is rated at 377 hp at 6,500 rpm and 341 lb-ft of torque at 4,700 rpm. EPA estimated fuel economy is improved to 29/30/29 mpg (city/highway/combined). It is given a CARB emissions rating of LEV III SULEV30 compared to the non-hybrids ULEV-2 ranking.

377 hp and 341 tq would feel really nice getting up on the highway I'm sure. With a decent gas mileage.
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Old 02-12-2020, 07:41 PM   #14
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2018+ RLX is about $10k over his stated "if I sell the CTS" budget
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Old 02-12-2020, 07:57 PM   #15
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After Volkswagen did a cost benefit analysis on violating the clean air act and came to the conclusion that destroying the atmosphere would be more profitable than what they would pay in fines for doing so, I came to the conclusion that I would never support there business.
VW, Audi, Porsche, Ducati, Bentley, Bugatti, Lamborghini are not an option for me. I had to sell my Veyron, lol
My suggestion would be the infiniti Q70 hybrid. RWD, Luxury, 31 mpg average, 2016 going on cargurus for 23.3k. And it looks pretty sexy to me
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Old 02-16-2020, 02:06 PM   #16
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Thanks guys!
Sorry I took so long to reply. By the time I looked again, there were 8 replies... and responding to all that on my phone was too much. I haven't gotten back to my computer until now!

Quote:
Originally Posted by CyborgGT View Post
Comfort, attractiveness, power, newer. I'm reading that it looks like noise insulation and reliability are there. Ballistic door panels make up for the lack of mpgs. Plus, people in front of you are likely to get out of your way, further easing your commute.

https://denver.craigslist.org/cto/d/...071552124.html

I love the SHO, but the gas mileage would definitely kill me. It's not as luxurious inside as I'd like, either. I still have the Miata, and I intend to get something even more project-oriented at some point, so I'd rather sacrifice raw power for luxury if it comes down to it!
That being said, the Lincoln alternative isn't a bad idea... though the best Lincoln for my needs might be the MKZ hybrid. Slow as balls, but efficient and reasonably luxurious (if I can forget that it's largely a Fusion...)

Quote:
Originally Posted by owequitit View Post
Toyota Avalon, Lincoln just about anything, Lexus IS250/200T or ES350, MMC ILX, pre-MMC TLX, base model Cadillac ATS.

My initial though before you established your year limit was "used LS400/430/460", but you probably can't get one that new on your budget.
I've considered an ES, especially the hybrid model. Cadillac ATS is a thought, though (and this is dumb...) the executive assistant at my job has one (manual, too!) I'd feel weird, like I'm copying her. Especially since she's the only one with a legit luxury car on staff. I might still check one out, though. I wonder how cushy it is. I'm expecting a Camaro in Cadillac guise.

Quote:
Originally Posted by SSMAccord View Post
As I read this, it sounds like a newish Mazda 6 with the turbo engine would fit most of the parameters. They haven't paired the engine with a manual in that car though.




As an obscure suggestion, the Infiniti M56, might fit most of the prerequisites also. It is kinda an acquired taste aesthetically and the Infiniti brand equity seems to be eroding at an alarming pace these days. The V8 variant likely will be thirsty as well.

The turbo Mazda6 is out of my range, sadly... but I'm VERY strongly leaning toward a 2018 Touring model (in CB7 terms... an LX. ) I'll need to settle for automatic if I want anything more than a base model, so I'll need to weigh my priorities.

I have some interest in the M35h, oddly. It gets comparable MPG as my current Accord, but it makes nearly 400hp, and it's a much more luxurious car. My only concern is that Nissan's quality hasn't been great, and I'd still be spending $12,000-$16,000 on a 7-8 year old Infiniti hybrid.

Quote:
Originally Posted by owequitit View Post
Forgot to add: Caddy XTS.

If you want isolation, IMO, you are looking at Lexus, Caddy or Lincoln. Maybe certain years of Benz, but that could get a lot more expensive.
XTS is a little thirsty... but probably one of the most luxurious rides, I'd imagine. None priced in my range locally anyway. If I go FWD premium with a V6, the ES is probably the clear cut winner.

Quote:
Originally Posted by thepowderblue View Post
I recently bought a new 2019 insight and am in love
What ever happened to your cb7?
I've considered one of the less luxurious hybrids (Prius, Insight, Ioniq). Hyundai would probably get my money if I went that route. The Ioniq is the most efficient, and IMO the best looking in the segment. The Prius went from looking like a suppository to a suppository that wants to be a spaceship. The Insight went from a wannabe Prius (2nd gen on, anyway... 1st gen is still awesome) to something very Civic-like.
I do like the Clarity, though I don't know if a plug-in is right for me. 48 mile EV range would get me to work, and halfway home... so maybe... too bad the local ones are $5,000)+ more than I'd be willing to spend.

Quote:
Originally Posted by sonikaccord View Post
I'd go Lexus as well....

If you want to get divorced...
335d
265hp
424lb-ft
35+ mpg
Prestige-ish
*Reliability
Comfort
Fun
Torque
Diesel noises

*Once you do a delete, there's nothing else to really break except traction. If you do a tune, you can get 600 wtq and about 40 mpg. Make sure you can still get registered with a delete and you're golden.
I've considered one, actually! My wife is German, so I could probably talk her into a German car. Granted, she's also frugal, and a used late model BMW is probably not the most wallet-conscious choice for a 600+ mile weekly commute.
It does check a TON of boxes, though...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Julianachos View Post
A Honda Fit.

The Mazda 6 seems very appealing. You can actually find a current gen in manual, but I'm sure its a matter of finding one. It was on the base model up until last year and who knows how many are out there.

https://www.caranddriver.com/news/a2...l-killed-2019/


The Acura ILX was also available in manual at one point if you don't mind one of those. Not sure how isolated it'll be for you though.

I didn't mind the previous generation (2011-2019) VW Passat. The GT was one of my favorites and got okay highway mileage if you didn't thrash it. Find a <'15 TDI and you can get up to 42 mpg. IMO it was a decent couch.
I do miss the stupid battle egg! Though you fixed it up significantly more than I think I would've ever had the patience for. Probably because you saw what it could be... I just remembered what it was (when it was brand new, with 15 miles on it.)

The 6 is my current favorite, for sure. I'm wavering between a base manual and any other model. The auto show featured a top trim model, and I fell in love. The interior, especially the stitched padded bit spanning the middle of the dashboard, was just so classy looking.

I couldn't do an ILX. I laugh whenever I see one. It's a Civic. A barely warmed-over Civic. It's the Acura Cimarron. Granted, the Civic is a great car... but I'd rather just get a Civic and be honest with myself!

I used to despise VW, with the exceptions being the Corrado and Phaeton. Dieselgate actually made them MORE acceptable in my eyes. I kinda feel like they now have to try harder to capture the interest of their target market, which is good for buyers. The Jetta and Passat still bore me, though. I like the newer GTI very much, but it's too "hot hatch" for what I'm looking for here. I either want a car that screams luxury... or a car that quietly, respectfully states it (which I think the 6 actually does pretty well.)
That said... if I could afford an Arteon, I would DEFINITELY be driving one. After sitting in one at the auto show the other day... holy crap. That is a BEAUTIFUL car.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Straight Success View Post
2015 Buick Regal GS manual. You can thank me later.



or 2017 Chevrolet Caprice PPV (Unmarked Detective Model - for the civilian in you)

I wasn't impressed with the interior of the Regal GS (and some old guy actually yelled at me at the auto show last year when he asked and I told him my honest opinion... ) It does largely meet my needs, though. Aside from price. I haven't looked, but I doubt I'm going to find one under $20,000 yet.
Someday, I should get a TourX, and do a full Regal GS mechanical conversion (manual included.)

Caprice PPV would be cool, but it would be a cut-rate version of my CTS-V. Same power, same fairly understated design... but with a stripper interior and an automatic transmission. Though that's probably the cheapest anyone can get into a V8 powered Holden-based sedan anymore. The performance G8s are stupid expensive, and the two dozen people smart enough to buy a Chevy SS know exactly what they have.

Quote:
Originally Posted by H311RA151N View Post
I like these. Just so you guys know, on these they can have a stretched timing chain. Once the tensioner gets maxed out or it jumps a tooth on a cam gear it's a pretty bad deal. You get a CEL for it before hand but some sellers can hide it by clearing the code. The SHO 3.5 EcoBoost I guess isn't as notorious for this as the F series 3.5 EcoBoost but it does happen. No worries though if you want one, from what I've read just give it a good test drive and check for stored codes or a pending code. I like the SHO and might purchase one some day. From what I've read this is about the only thing to look for in the new SHO that isn't obvious or might be easily hidden from a potential buyer.
At my target price range, I'm likely to find one of those "hidden" surprises!

Quote:
Originally Posted by verothacamaro View Post
The newer Mazda 6 can be had pretty cheap from what I'm seeing with the 2.5turbo option.

I'm not a fan of the exterior styling, but the interior design is excellent, barring the terrible infotainment.

Also - don't sleep on the Hyundai Genesis (before they spun off the brand). I think it still looks pretty sharp and the interior rivals mid-range luxury marques.
All the turbo 6s around me are going for $25k+. For a used 6, I'd be hoping to keep it under 20... closer to 15 if possible. NA models would likely be sufficient anyway. 180hp isn't crazy, but should be enough to scoot me to 80mph before I get rear-ended on the highway!

I like the Genesis, but even the V6 models seem to fall short of my MPG target. The sedan gets 29mpg at best (highway), and probably less when it's a few years old and driven in real world conditions. My Accord hybrid is rated at 35mpg highway. I get a consistent 28mpg when I drive it like someone that doesn't have feet made of lead.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rilas View Post
Another option you could do would be the new 2018+ Acura RLX Hybrid. Has the NSX drive train but swapped around. Not as much power obviously but the rear has the electric motors to push the car around. I don't think it was offered in a manual. It might just be worth checking out as you would have an almost new car.

Hybrid models feature the VCM capability as well, with an added start-stop system to boost fuel economy further as well as the ability to operate entirely on electric power up to 58 miles per hour with light throttle usage. The hybrid also uses a 7-speed dual clutch transmission using an integrated 35 kW (47 hp) electric motor, with each rear wheel being powered by a 27-kilowatt (36 hp) electric motor, with 2 rear electric motors total. This setup gives the hybrid a torque vectoring all-wheel drive system with rear wheels strictly electrically powered.

A 72-cell 1.3 kWh 66 pound lithium-ion battery pack is placed behind the rear seat. Total system power output on hybrid is rated at 377 hp at 6,500 rpm and 341 lb-ft of torque at 4,700 rpm. EPA estimated fuel economy is improved to 29/30/29 mpg (city/highway/combined). It is given a CARB emissions rating of LEV III SULEV30 compared to the non-hybrids ULEV-2 ranking.

377 hp and 341 tq would feel really nice getting up on the highway I'm sure. With a decent gas mileage.
That power rating with that gas mileage, provided that it had a comfortable ride, would be ideal. Though I don't think I'd find one anywhere near my target price range. As Julian says below, it would likely be 50% higher than my absolute ceiling... and that would be settling for whatever was cheapest, rather than finding the right color and features. Something to keep in mind for my next purchase, though!
I expect to be in my current job for quite a while, so my income isn't likely to increase drastically (it's not bad... but I'll never be rich doing what I do.) I'm not sure yet if I'd like to shoot for my boss's job once she retires (or aim for a similar job once I have the experience.) That would put me in a position to comfortably buy such a car, though.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Julianachos View Post
2018+ RLX is about $10k over his stated "if I sell the CTS" budget


Quote:
Originally Posted by blazercrx View Post
After Volkswagen did a cost benefit analysis on violating the clean air act and came to the conclusion that destroying the atmosphere would be more profitable than what they would pay in fines for doing so, I came to the conclusion that I would never support there business.
VW, Audi, Porsche, Ducati, Bentley, Bugatti, Lamborghini are not an option for me. I had to sell my Veyron, lol
My suggestion would be the infiniti Q70 hybrid. RWD, Luxury, 31 mpg average, 2016 going on cargurus for 23.3k. And it looks pretty sexy to me
I felt much the same way regarding VW... though I do feel that some of the extreme limitations we've put on diesel vehicles were a bit much. Regardless, I don't condone any business that will fake results to bypass any law, regardless of whether or not they agree with it. Just like with our old cars... sure, we can gain a few horsepower and save money by deleting our cats, and the amount of pollution one car will make is negligible....... but I don't agree with doing it at all.

I haven't looked into the Q70 hybrid yet. I'll check it out! I assume it's the successor to the M35h, which I've considered (and it's still not totally out of the question.) Ever since Infiniti just started calling all of their cars Q*, I can't keep them straight.
I just don't know how much faith I have in Nissan. Their quality lately has been very rental-car worthy. I know Infiniti is a step up, and they seem to still be doing things right with that brand... but is a 300+ mile weekly commute going to turn a used Infiniti into an empty wallet? At that point, I'd seriously be weighing that car against diesel and hybrid versions of German luxury.
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Old 02-20-2020, 08:27 PM   #17
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2016+ Civic EX or SI

SI would probably be more your speed with a manual Apple CarPlay/Android Auto, sunroof, etc.

EX is same, just only in CVT.

I bought a 2018 Civic EX with the K20 N/A and it gets 41 MPG all-highway. On my former NJ commute BFB-Rte 38-295-exit 52 across to McGuire I was averaging 35 mpg. It’s way more comfortable than my 2006 Civic, CarPlay is a game changer and the styling is a lot better. The K20 isn’t the fastest thing in the world but I had no issues with 295 or the turnpike.

Actually the turbo motor gets better highway mileage, people are getting 43-44 mpg highway in that, but at the time I wasn’t comfortable quite yet with owning a Honda turbo for the next 10 yrs and when I test drove both, I could barely tell the difference in the day-to-day drivability.
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Old 02-21-2020, 10:51 AM   #18
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2016+ Civic EX or SI

SI would probably be more your speed with a manual Apple CarPlay/Android Auto, sunroof, etc.

EX is same, just only in CVT.

I bought a 2018 Civic EX with the K20 N/A and it gets 41 MPG all-highway. On my former NJ commute BFB-Rte 38-295-exit 52 across to McGuire I was averaging 35 mpg. It’s way more comfortable than my 2006 Civic, CarPlay is a game changer and the styling is a lot better. The K20 isn’t the fastest thing in the world but I had no issues with 295 or the turnpike.

Actually the turbo motor gets better highway mileage, people are getting 43-44 mpg highway in that, but at the time I wasn’t comfortable quite yet with owning a Honda turbo for the next 10 yrs and when I test drove both, I could barely tell the difference in the day-to-day drivability.
I second this. The Civic Sport Touring hatchback would be a great little car that would be relaxing to drive with sporting characteristics.

The new ones are available with a 6 speed manual, but if you're looking used, you'll be stuck with the CVT which is perfectly adequate. It's a punchy little motor and I love the LED headlights.

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Old 02-27-2020, 05:36 AM   #19
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I still can’t bring myself to get a Civic.
Logically, I know they’re great cars. But I’ve spent so long scoffing at Civics as an Accord enthusiast that I can’t get excited about one! If I did go Civic, it’d probably be a hybrid, as their mpg is impressive. But if I go hybrid in that segment, the Ioniq is my top choice (looks, features, and efficiency... a winner in all three areas for me.)

I started looking at older pre-facelift RLX Sport Hybrid. If I go back to 2014-2015, they’re closer to my price range (if I want to spend new car money on a 6 year old luxury car...)
It’s not necessarily a winner yet, but it is more of an option than I thought! Thanks for the idea, Rilas!
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Old 03-01-2020, 08:36 PM   #20
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I still canít bring myself to get a Civic.
Logically, I know theyíre great cars. But Iíve spent so long scoffing at Civics as an Accord enthusiast that I canít get excited about one!
Same. I don't care how much people rave about it... it's still a Civic. It is very nice though!

I noticed everyone posted sedans, what about a small CUV/SUV? *gag* But seriously, there are a ton of them available and most are catered to the normal people that want isolation from the road.



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