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Wtb Compact Suv

#1 User is offline   mike4king Icon

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Posted 16 March 2018 - 09:11 AM

Sold the wife's Corolla and looking at our options for a compact SUV for her. Open to suggestions/opinions from anyone that has owned one or done some research.

Started by looking at/driving the Toyota Rav4, Mazda CX-5, Honda CR-V, Nissan Rogue, and Ford Escape. Didn't look at Hyundai, Kia, or Chevy.

Pretty much down to either the Rav4 or Escape. Hard requirements are 4-cylinder and AWD. Other preferences are 2013+, under 60k miles, and roughly $15-18k. Ready to pay cash as soon as we find the right deal. I'm a big fan of Toyota but they're really getting premium pricing right now. Ford Escape with the upgraded 2.0 Ecoboost feels pretty good (some of which come with a towing package capable of 3500 lbs, which would be nice for a 5x8 to get my bike to the track).
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#2 User is offline   POE Icon

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Posted 16 March 2018 - 10:44 AM

Rav4 and CR-V are both solid and offer decent room. Each are a dime a dozen and can be found used at all different price ranges. The Rogue has Nissan's AWD which is respectable. It's not the best looking vehicle, but it's reliable and cheap. The Juke is a hybrid SUV size (Smaller yet. Almost car size) but it has the sportiest handling with torque vectoring AWD and a short wheel base. It's like a big go kart. Just have to be okay with the odd look of the thing. I wouldn't mind owning any of those vehicles from a reliability stand point. Though, some people have said bad things about the CVT transmissions. But I have yet to hear anything directly about the Nissan systems. Maybe someone else can chime in on that with personal experience? I know Sam Ferris uses one to haul bike and gear to track days.
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#3 User is offline   mike4king Icon

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Posted 16 March 2018 - 11:18 AM

View PostPOE, on 16 March 2018 - 10:44 AM, said:

The Juke is a hybrid SUV size (Smaller yet. Almost car size) but it has the sportiest handling with torque vectoring AWD and a short wheel base. It's like a big go kart.


Ah that Juke is ugly. Also, not looking for anything too small, as we have two 60lb dogs and one small child (with plans for another 1-2 kids). Long term plan is for me to get a mid-size SUV in a few years, but to get her something right now that's just big enough to get 1-2 kids and 2 dogs to the cabin for a weekend but is still economical and cheaper.

I also hear a mix of "They're horrible" and "Eh, they're not too bad" about CVTs but I've yet to find someone (who's opinion I trust) that likes them a lot.
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Posted 16 March 2018 - 11:24 AM

View Postmike4king, on 16 March 2018 - 11:18 AM, said:

I also hear a mix of "They're horrible" and "Eh, they're not too bad" about CVTs but I've yet to find someone (who's opinion I trust) that likes them a lot.


I don't think there's much about CVT's that's meant to be liked other than practicality and MPG. I think it's simply a practical option. They are so linear it's just boring. It takes all the character out of the power curve. I haven't heard enough to scare me away from one, but it would only be for a practical vehicle, not a fun vehicle. Though, they do usually have a sport/manual mode that mimics actual gear ratios.
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#5 User is offline   crakerjac Icon

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Posted 16 March 2018 - 11:46 AM

LOVE my Honda Element. Which was based on the CRV platform. AWD is good enough for 'on road excursions'... only time I've gotten stuck was completely my own fault. The K24 motor is pretty much bullet proof.

Wife has a Pathfinder with a CVT. Bigger than you wan't, but probably has a similar CVT. My feeling on that transmission is 'meh'. As Poe said, it takes all the fun out of driving.
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#6 User is offline   ZZR Joel Icon

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Posted 16 March 2018 - 12:31 PM

Just got an escape for the GF mother. It is amaing how much room that little thing has. I can easily see dogs fitting in there no problem.
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#7 User is offline   sininja Icon

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Posted 16 March 2018 - 02:31 PM

I loved my 17 forester, hauled my 2 snowmobiles up north while still getting 18mpg. if I didn't need a truck I'd still have it. CVT was fine, hand calculated 33mpg in the summer with the a.c. on and elevated freeway speeds. I could easily get more at 70mph without a.c. my friend bought same year rav4 without awd and just matched my mpg. forester had superior off road chops, and awesome view from the inside. rav4 had a more trendy interior that chicks seem to like.
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#8 User is offline   crakerjac Icon

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Posted 16 March 2018 - 02:56 PM

View Postsininja, on 16 March 2018 - 02:31 PM, said:

I loved my 17 forester, hauled my 2 snowmobiles up north while still getting 18mpg. if I didn't need a truck I'd still have it. CVT was fine, hand calculated 33mpg in the summer with the a.c. on and elevated freeway speeds. I could easily get more at 70mph without a.c. my friend bought same year rav4 without awd and just matched my mpg. forester had superior off road chops, and awesome view from the inside. rav4 had a more trendy interior that chicks seem to like.


Did you have turbo or NA model?
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#9 User is offline   sininja Icon

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Posted 16 March 2018 - 05:03 PM

just the regular old n/a model. I really did love the thing.
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#10 User is offline   crakerjac Icon

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Posted 16 March 2018 - 05:47 PM

Interesting. Forester is on the short list for next car... But I just have a hard time getting past the 'lesbian car' stigma...
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#11 User is offline   sininja Icon

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Posted 17 March 2018 - 06:00 AM

lol I got my share of funny looks! rav4 is safe bet if the awd/off-road part doesn't matter. Escape/rogue should be wiped off the list. I spent years researching before buying and it truthfully comes down to the Forester/Rav4/Crv. Taking into account reliability and resale etc. The superior awd swayed me to the Forester but whatever meets your needs
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#12 User is offline   DVS DAN Icon

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Posted 20 March 2018 - 09:39 AM

View Postcrakerjac, on 16 March 2018 - 11:46 AM, said:

LOVE my Honda Element. Which was based on the CRV platform. AWD is good enough for 'on road excursions'... only time I've gotten stuck was completely my own fault. The K24 motor is pretty much bullet proof.
Lady at work is looking for an SUV as well (new models), and we whittled down to the Honda Pilot, Chevy Traverse/Acadia, and Toyota Highlander. A dealership buddy said to ignore the GM's, Toyotas are crazy expensive, and the Pilot (although spendy) was a good choice.
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#13 User is offline   mike4king Icon

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Posted 20 March 2018 - 09:49 AM

Yeah we were looking a little smaller than that, and ended up driving up north this weekend and buying a 2014 Ford Escape. This is the first time I've ever bought a Ford, but we're pretty happy with it. I could definitely see going with a Ford Explorer or Toyota Highlander for our next car, but this Escape is perfect for the wifey.
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#14 User is offline   cra_fizzer Icon

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Posted 20 March 2018 - 11:23 AM

View PostDVS DAN, on 20 March 2018 - 09:39 AM, said:

Lady at work is looking for an SUV as well (new models), and we whittled down to the Honda Pilot, Chevy Traverse/Acadia, and Toyota Highlander. A dealership buddy said to ignore the GM's, Toyotas are crazy expensive, and the Pilot (although spendy) was a good choice.

Stay away from the Chevy. They are known for tranny issues.
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#15 User is offline   ZZR Joel Icon

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Posted 20 March 2018 - 01:03 PM

View Postcra_fizzer, on 20 March 2018 - 11:23 AM, said:

Stay away from the Chevy. They are known for tranny issues.

Did they start using Dodges trans? Self destruct after 70k. "9 Speed transmissions" when they didn't master the first 3.
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