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  #21  
Old 02-13-2013
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I rented a car in errr I think it was Croatia... it was a Zastafa - I believe they're the parent company for Yugo... The first rental car I've ever had to push start.

Still better than the Fiat powered Lada Niva I once owned... thank god for the heated rear window!
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  #22  
Old 02-13-2013
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Krikkitman View Post
Well, if you like Toyota but aren't so sure about the styling or dealership experience, there's always Scion, ha ha!

The xD is the slightly smaller and somewhat better looking of the Scion box-mobiles, and it wasn't actually a bad car to drive. Certainly quite practical.
http://www.thetelegram.com/Autos/Sci...-Test-Review/1

The tC is basically a Corolla in Coupe clothing and with a bigger engine. It's surprisingly practical and roomy for a coupe (even the back seat is genuinely useable), so if you want a Corolla but don't really want, well, a Corolla, it's an interesting alternative. http://www.autos.ca/car-test-drives/...se-series-8-0/

Then of course there's the FR-S which is absolutely splendid but definitely not all that practical. But I want one ... http://www.thetelegram.com/Autos/Sci...-Test-Review/1

Just don't get Scion's obnoxious extra-cost "tuner" exhaust systems -- save your money (and your hearing) and keep the factory exhaust!
I hadn't really thought about the Scion! I will definitely have to check them out.

In your review of the xD I think you answered this question:

Quote:
My only real complaint was that Scion seems to have deliberately oriented the gas and brake pedals so that it is not just difficult, but damn nigh impossible, to perform heel-and-toe downshifts (one can't help but wonder if this is to reduce the possibility of unintended acceleration due to "pedal misapplication").
With this:
Quote:
brake assist and smart stop technology which cuts power to the engine if the gas and brake pedal are pressed at the same time.
Imagine trying to blip the throttle on the downshift while braking for a corner and the damn computer won't let you! How annoying would that be?? Honestly! Car makers have got to stop with the Nanny-Car! I DON'T need help knowing when to brake, and I can park the damn car myself!

The tC looks interesting. At least it is a bit unusual. Unfortunately I think the wife has a 4 door in mind. She might change her mind if she likes the car though.
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  #23  
Old 02-13-2013
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what? no heel and toe into the corners on modern cars?
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  #24  
Old 02-13-2013
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The last new car I bought was a Honda Element. Definitely practical! The dealer let us test fit the tandem inside.

It hurt to sell it when we left Texas.

This past year we bought a used Honda Fit. Tons of room inside (fits two grown greyhounds with ease), great visibility, and good mileage. The sport model is nice and zippy too.
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  #25  
Old 02-14-2013
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Quote:
Originally Posted by crashdog View Post
what? no heel and toe into the corners on modern cars?
Typically if the pedals are set up reasonably well you CAN heel and toe even if there is a "smart stop" nanny because they set up the nanny so that there's about half-second or one-second delay between stomping both pedals and the engine management computer shutting the fuel off.

So that's plenty of time to briefly blip the throttle for heel-and-toe downshifts, provided the pedal spacing is right!

What the "Smart Stop" nanny does stop you doing is having silly front-wheel drive fun in the winter by yanking on the hand brake and blasting around a snowy parking lot with the rear wheels locked up (yep, they included the park brake in the nanny programming) or using trail-braking to improve front-end bite in the corners (I was trying to trail brake in a AWD Matrix, not because it's a race car, but because it had winter tires on and was understeering like a pig, and I was curious if I could get some bite by trail braking and getting the weight more onto the front wheels. No dice though, since you couldn't keep any throttle on, therefore you couldn't brake hard enough to load up the front wheels without at the same time slowing down so much that the exercise became pointless -- after all, you won't understeer at 20 km/h).

And yeah, the nannies make me a little insane at times, especially the nannies that can't be disabled (in the Mazda CX-9, for instance, you could only turn off the traction control for 20 secs at a time and it came back on as soon as you hit 15 km/h -- basically they set it up so you could spin the wheels a little while getting unstuck. ONLY).

I'm a little old-school, so it also makes me insane is when they don't even offer a manual transmission on cars that really beg for one, or when they only offer a manual in the cheapest-ass bare-bones trim level. SUVs and CUVs are the worst for this, often you can't get a manual with the AWD versions, only on the cheap-ass FWD trim levels.

Drizzie's onto something good with his Subies -- I've been impressed with every one of those so far, and the XV Crosstrek probably sits as one of the only CUVs I'd actually buy for myself, not least because if you want the manual transmission in the high trim level, you can get it that way. And it handles well, and is fun to drive. http://www.thetelegram.com/Autos/Sub...-Test-Review/1
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  #26  
Old 02-14-2013
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Quote:
Originally Posted by henryr View Post
The last new car I bought was a Honda Element. Definitely practical! The dealer let us test fit the tandem inside.

It hurt to sell it when we left Texas.

This past year we bought a used Honda Fit. Tons of room inside (fits two grown greyhounds with ease), great visibility, and good mileage. The sport model is nice and zippy too.
I quite like the Fit, in a sort of unassuming and practical way. And I did note the awesome outward visibility ...

http://www.thetelegram.com/Autos/Hon...-Test-Review/1
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  #27  
Old 02-14-2013
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My wife really likes the XV as a replacement for our Impreza. I'm leaning towards a turbo'd Forester though. I'm less practical than she.
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  #28  
Old 02-15-2013
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Speaking of cars ...
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  #29  
Old 02-15-2013
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Ouch! Whose car is that?



I was looking at the Subaru Impreza today. Definitely interesting! I thought they were more expensive but it slides right into the same price range as the others. Any thoughts on their AWD system and CVT tranny? (we tend to favor the manual transmissions, but the CVT is intriguing.)
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  #30  
Old 02-16-2013
Petrie Petrie is offline
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Having owned at least one of every type of Impreza I can say they are very well built. The AWD on the base is very good The new Impreza has economy figures never before seen on a Subaru. The paint quality on the base model White Impreza is the only problem we've experienced on any of the cars and that problem was the subject of a factory recall.

All our cars have been manual. The CVT feels a lot slower but if you're stuck in traffic a lot it may have its advantages.
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