Cars are Silly, part 2

See Cars are Silly, Part 1

Oh my, it's been a week since I posted. Whoops!

We had a great Labor Day weekend (mostly- I'll get to that...) with friends, boating on a lake & catching up. I have pictures, but haven't been sitting down at home long enough to get pictures uploaded. I'll work on that.

What have I been up to? Car shopping, unfortunately.

Once upon a time, at the beginning of last summer, we replaced our hail-damaged Civic with a Volvo station wagon. The size of the car met our needs perfectly, and we were sure it would for the foreseeable future. In September last year, we had repairs that totaled $700, which we weren't thrilled about, but chalked it up to maintenance.

We took the Volvo on a few different adventures, up mountains, across many states, and it has done great and been very comfortable. Except.

What I haven't mentioned is, since that first repair, we've put another few thousand dollars into it. Just this summer, it's been in the shop four times- including last weekend, where it stranded us 2 hours from home. The second and third repair this summer, we said "We'll give it one more chance since we like it so much." The fourth? It was (seriously!) a $2 part that broke, but "It's a nothing part until you don't got one" (Name that quote!). It was the last straw. We're car shopping while the car's still working and we can trade it in.

So, I'll probably be MIA until we get this issue well-researched and figured out. I'm thankful we have a working car now, and I'm thankful we had the foresight to save a car fund on top of that, so we'll hopefully, this time, be getting something that really will last us for a while.

In the meantime, if anyone wants to leave a comment with input on a Subaru Forester, Subaru Outback, Mazda5, or Ford Freestyle (Taurus X), feel free. We're looking for something that will hold carseats, people, & stuff for trips but isn't a minivan (Josh) or an SUV (me). Being wagon-like is a plus. Also, as we learned, reliability is high on the list. Ready? Go!


alissa said...

subaru. that's the only way to go.

we have a 2003 outback, and i like it alot. it's roomier than the forester, drives like a car but has a lot of space for carseats and stuff and whatnot.

the only think i don't like is that our particular model has a 6-cylinder engine, and it's a bigger, heavier car, so it's not as fuel efficient as i'd like it to be (about 26 mpg hwy, 22 or so city -- not terrible, but not good either).

i loved loved loved our forester until it got totaled. it wasn't as roomy or comfortable as the outback, but it was okay, and fuel efficient.

we only had the forester for a year before it was totaled, but we never had any problems with it -- we had to replace the CV boot at some point, but that's just a pretty normal wear-and-tear problem with subarus with over 75K miles on them.

we haven't had any problems with the outback so far, but we've only had it since july.

we're totally brand loyal to subarus now -- i think we'll pretty much always drive at least one.

one thing to consider -- i have heard it can be difficult to do three carseats across in subarus. so if you only need 2 carseats, it's probably fine. once the 3rd kid comes around for us, we'll have to get something with 3rd row seating (preferably a tribeca, but unless we win the lottery, that won't happen).

Kacie said...

Oh, what a pain! Good luck with your search. I believe Mrs Money of Ultimate Money Blog has a Ford Freestyle so ask her what she thinks.

When we were briefly toying with the idea of getting another vehicle, we looked at the Mazda5. It's a cool concept and I think it would work well for some families of 4. Beyond that, I dunno. The third row is TINY. And you can't fit hardly anything in the "trunk" space if the third row is in use. I think it's something like 12" of depth.

So if you have passengers in the third row, don't plan on a big trip with luggage.

Also, if you have 2 rear-facing car seats in the second row, I don't see how you could get to the third row without climbing through the trunk. But maybe it's possible? I dunno.

We hope for more than 3 kiddos so we thought the car wouldn't work for us in the long term.

Larissa said...

Daniel's family is 100% loyal to Subaru's. My mother-in-law drove her Subaru Outback until it was over 200,000 miles (I can't remember the exact amount but it's crazy high) and then gave it to my brother-in-law and his wife. (She wanted to keep it in the family.) She replaced it with another Outback that she absolutely loves.

BTW, one of the reasons Daniel's family is so loyal to Subaru is because they need all-wheel drive in the winter since they live on the top of a hill (or mountain if you ask me). I don't know about the other cars you listed but that might be something you want to consider.

Another reason they are so loyal is because they last forever. In WV, Subarus sell like hot cakes. At one point, Daniel's family had a Subaru they were selling and replacing with another Subaru. The person who bought it from them bought it site unseen! Seriously though, in WV you have to act fast if you see a personal add for a Subaru and you want to buy it.

I personally like the look of the Forester better than the Outback but I've never actually sat in one or contemplated how many car seats it can hold.

Have you considered calling Click and Clack to ask their opinion? (Car Talk on NPR)

Anonymous said...

OH Josh, minivans just mean that you've grown up! I would love to have the New Odyssey,but George says probably not ;( If you want your kids or yourself to be able to go out with friends, then a 6 seater is a must!


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