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Throwing the Car Search Wide Open

My wife's looking at a new car. I mentioned this a few weeks ago when she was thinking about the CR-V.

Now we're throwing the car search wide open. Carey wants a 2010 (or 2009) version of the Aztek and the features it has: good handling, lots of room, great gas mileage ((The Aztek, though rated much lower, consistently gets 28-29 MPG highway and 25 in regular usage.))…

The Element has removable rear seats, for example, but gets worse mileage than the Aztek and has a crappier engine ((Figure that one out???)). The CR-V feels like "a bigger car" to her.

So, what's the closest thing to a 2009 version of the Aztek? And I don't mean something like the Buick Enclave - I mean something that leans more towards the "sporty/outdoorsy" features?

Name anything - we don't care if it's Hyundai or Subaru or whatever.

7 Responses to "Throwing the Car Search Wide Open"

  1. A friend of mine has a Nissan Rogue that he's quite happy with. The 2009 model supposedly gets decent mileage.

    The same friend tried driving a Jeep Pilot and said it handled like a brick in handling and ride comfort--avoid.

  2. You guys want another SUV, still have the VW?

    Subaru Forester
    OR the Outback which is getting a makeover for '10

    '10 Chevy Equinox

  3. You're looking at a an SUV but have you maybe considered a "wagon?" The Subuaru Outback for example has most of the same size of the Forester but better mileage. Granted, I've never been impressed with Subaru's gas mileage but my g/fs family swears by them (her two cars have both been Subarus and the latest is an outback) but I cant deny that they've been pretty reliable cars and are great in just about any kind of PA weather. Her's sucks ass in gas mileage though. 22mpg avg in the driving she does is terrible. My old saturn that cost a 1/3rd that hers did with the same power was averaging 27-30mpg in town. The AWD hurts.

    Otherwise a Jetta sportswagen TDI would offer vastly superior mileage with similar space

  4. The Aztek was basically a mid-size crossover. The Hyundai equivalent is probably the Santa Fe.

    But take a look at the Hyundai Tucson. I thought it would be too small when I test drove it, but it rides high. It gives the SUV perspective without actually being big. It's smaller than the Sante Fe, and very nimble. No problem fitting a carseat and a couple adults in the back.

    (I think it's being renamed for 2010.)

  5. Look at the RAV4. We are very happy with it. Its huge inside, but just a small SUV on the outside. I recommend the V6. 26-28 MPG depending on 6 or 4.

  6. I'm surprised you haven't looked this way sooner: Jetta SportWagen TDI gets 30 city, 41 highway. If you don't want the TDI (and the tax incentives that come with it) the standard version still gets 21 and 31 MPG and costs less than $20k.

  7. [...] update to this post about our car search. Now we're looking at the Subaru [...]