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Thread: Recommendation: Compact car for $15-20K?

  1. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mitsu3000gt View Post
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    In 2015 we bought a Fit but the Versa was our second choice. Similar cars size-wise, but the Honda had the magic seats (you can fit a bike in there which is ridiculous), ~30% more power, better resale, no rattles/creaks, a better CVT, more options on the cheap trim levels, and had a much nicer interior. Rear leg room is amazing in both, not much different than an S-class or something haha. I've had a Versa Note as a rental a few times too in the States.
    Agreed on the Versa Note being cheaper on all fronts, the seats still all fold flat though, never tired putting a bike in though. At the time in 2014, the loaded top trim (SL) of the Versa Note was less than $22,000 all in, and still offered 0% financing. It also came with the 360 camera and navi, and that's what sold us. A comparable Fit was closer to $25,000 and Honda doesn't have the 360 camera.

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    Quote Originally Posted by realazy View Post
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    Agreed on the Versa Note being cheaper on all fronts, the seats still all fold flat though, never tired putting a bike in though. At the time in 2014, the loaded top trim (SL) of the Versa Note was less than $22,000 all in, and still offered 0% financing. It also came with the 360 camera and navi, and that's what sold us. A comparable Fit was closer to $25,000 and Honda doesn't have the 360 camera.
    The magic seats in the Fit actually fold up. The seat-bottoms of the rear seats fold straight up which creates a huge cavity in front of the rear seats and behind the front seats, you can fully put a bicycle in there upright. It was a big selling point for us anyway. I think you can get them in the C-HR too.

    Sounds like you got a pretty great deal on the Versa, when we were looking the comparable one to the Fit was more than $22K from what I remember, and financing was not 0%. The Fit LX was ~$21K all-in after negotiations.
    Last edited by Mitsu3000gt; 03-14-2019 at 09:44 AM.

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    Along the same vein but in the 8K-10K range, would a Honda Fit still be the best bet? Fiance's sister needs a reliable car to get to-from work, I think essentially zero highway.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mitsu3000gt View Post
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    When we were shopping we looked a the Micra because it was $9999 with a MT and no options (not even power windows). It is a POS, and ridiculously underpowered but that was expected for the starting price. Want an automatic and basic options that come standard on every other vehicle? It jumps up to around $16K and you might as well buy a 'real' car. That's how it was a few years ago anyway. I think it's still good for someone who wants a warranty and basic transportation for the lowest possible cost, but that's about it.
    It's still that way - but the power toys are nothing but future headaches depending on how you look at it. All shit that breaks after warranty and costs thousands to fix

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    Quote Originally Posted by msommers View Post
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    Along the same vein but in the 8K-10K range, would a Honda Fit still be the best bet? Fiance's sister needs a reliable car to get to-from work, I think essentially zero highway.
    I would say so. The 2nd gen will probably be at the high end of the budget, but you can easily get the first gen for the low end of the budget. I miss our 2nd gen one quite a bit... its pretty fun imho in the sport trim with the manual.

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    ...
    Last edited by Sugarphreak; 08-18-2019 at 04:01 PM.

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    Cheers guys. Any mechanical issues I should keep an eye out for, on either generation?
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    Quote Originally Posted by msommers View Post
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    Along the same vein but in the 8K-10K range, would a Honda Fit still be the best bet? Fiance's sister needs a reliable car to get to-from work, I think essentially zero highway.
    Well... heres where cheap Nissans come in. The 2014 Nissan Versa Note I mentioned, its worth around 10gs now.

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    Quote Originally Posted by msommers View Post
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    Cheers guys. Any mechanical issues I should keep an eye out for, on either generation?
    Not that im aware of... both versions were pretty much bulletproof. Just the regular maintenance stuff.

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    how about those Focus ST? heard good thing about them ...
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  11. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by 98brg2d View Post
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    Are you saying the engine is too big for the car? If that is the case, I don't think I've ever heard anybody ever complain about an engine being too big for a car. It is hard to assess how fast (or slow) a Micra is since the world outside of America doesn't often do instrumented tests beyond fuel economy and braking distance but I would have a hard time thinking the car is overpowered if it can't muster a 1/4 mile time under 15 seconds. If it could do that, nobody would be buying a Fiesta ST. Automakers will rarely make anything other than a sports car that can routinely be driven past the limits of adhesion, whether in braking, cornering or accelerating, it just doesn't sit well with buyers and turns them off to the model, and brand.

    Not to derail the thread or anything. I would go Civic or Cruze hatchback myself, especially if you can find a diesel (they do exist in hatchback but maybe not yet at the stated price point). Even if the Cruze is not the fastest, best handling or most reliable, its styling is enough to keep me interested long term.
    No, I don't think your derailing the thread. Its good to hear a different perspective.

    I would say the engine is too big for the car. It was mostly sold as a 1L or 1.3 in the UK ages ago. The 1L was popular as fuel is expensive in the UK. Lots of people had the Micra as a 1L. It was cheap, good run around and stupidly reliable. My sisters 1996 Micra engine outlasted the body.

    The 1.4 - 1.8 engines would be for the mid size cars like the Ford focus, Vauxhall (Opel) Astra and VW Golfs. 1.6 being the most popular.
    Hell my dad had had a family saloon with the 1.6 engine. My cousin had a BMW 3 series with a 1.6L(yes it was shit). Though for those size cars, the 1.8-2L engines were preferable due to the power to weight ratio, fuel economy and cost of fuel. For example, in that category optimum engine size that people would buy for Toyota Corolla would actually be the 1.6L. But ideally for power to weight ratio, I would say the 1.8L is better which is what you have here in North America.

    So when I see the Micra as a 1.5L I think its overkill. Its like putting a 2.4L in a Honda Civic. For its day to day use, no need to go higher than a 1.3.
    The Micra is tailored to a specific market and sells really well in the UK. Thats due to its dinky size, weight and small engine. But in north America I dont think that idea works as much. Im even wondering why they sell it here, especially with people being fatter, wider roads and straighter roads. The specific demographic that buys this car in the UK, drives a Honda Odssey or SUV here in north America.
    That being said, bigger engines are preferred for automatics for smoother gear transitions. But with car computer tech advancing so much I don't think thats a big issue anymore. Especially with CVT's.

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