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What car should I buy?


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FWIW I understand the Audi is a great performing/riding car. However, i also heard it is a very complex technical design that may be prone to issues as the car ages.

 

I just bought a used Saab 9.3 for my family.

Saab's reliability is much improved over the old models and this car looks and handles great (with turbo).

 

FWIW- My son has a Subaru and has had no problems. Its a great winter car, is reliable but performance is average at best.

 

If a used volvo S80 ( I think thats the relatively new model with the killer body design) is in range I'd suggest looking at that.

My volvo 850 wagon is on 110K miles with no significant issues.

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Audis are pretty sweet, that's a great car, but as you may know I'm an old Volvo owner. My '85 240 DL wagon, that I paid $1000.00 is the best car I've ever owned. I love that car. I love the precise steering. I don't like the body styles on the newer Volvo wagons, they're too preppy looking.

 

Another car I like is the Infiniti I30, now the I35. I could live with one of those. I was in a wreck about 5 years ago and they gave me an Infiniti I30 as a rental car....for a month, while I looked at new cars. Oh yeah, I was drawing out the selection process....just a bit. Damn, I hated to give that thing up. Sweeeeeeet!

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SAAB: great road car (all year round!), great engine, very safe, BMW quality at lower cost.

 

Volvo S40: the V40 is a smarter choice. Good car but not very roomy. They are phasing out the old models for new S40/V50's. New Volvo's contains many Ford components.

 

I suppose you can test drive them?

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I understand the Volvo to be authentic Swedish - the newer Saab's share some GM parts.

 

My sister has Subarus and loves 'em, but I'm not really sold.

 

We have a Saab 9-5 wagon for the family truckster, and it's been great. The dealer is good too.

 

The Infiniti crossed my mind, in category with the Acura.

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Except for the convertibles, all current SAAB's are built in Trollhättan, Sweden. The convertibles are built in Finland.

 

Volvo V70, XC70 & S80 are built in Gothenburg, Sweden. S80 is a very problem free car and very comfortable.

S40 & V50 aren't made here, I believe they are built in Netherlands.

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Back in the eighties, Volvo bought the Dutch Daf car factory and the Daf with it's neat variomatic became a Volvo.

 

The 340 and 440 series were actually Daf designed I think.

 

The Volvo S40 is from the same line of cars, so not a genuine Volvo IMHO.

 

Saab used to be one of the safest cars, like Volvo. These days the safest cars seem to come from France, the Renault Megane is a very safe car and it drives (and looks) a lot nicer than an Audi.

 

French cars are the most comfortable cars since many years. My current car is a Citroen XM turbo CT and this car is a joy to drive, in fact it handles a lot better than my Jaguar XJ6.

 

Try a French car like Renault of Peugeot as well.

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Originally posted by Mats Olsson.:

Except for the convertibles, all current SAAB's are built in Trollhättan, Sweden. The convertibles are built in Finland.

 

Volvo V70, XC70 & S80 are built in Gothenburg, Sweden. S80 is a very problem free car and very comfortable.

S40 & V50 aren't made here, I believe they are built in Netherlands.

We love the Saab wagon. We had a 12 hour hell ride (twice as long as it should take) in vacation traffic last month, and I really felt no fatigue.

 

I do think the V40 has potential. The wagon style has more versatility - not many on the used market though. (I guess that's a GOOD sign, folks want to keep 'em)

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Having owned a VW Jetta for 5 years and going strong. Nothing more than routine maintenace. I voted for the A4. The Acura would be a runner up as they are looking pretty sweet.
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I have owned 3 audis that sucked horribly. Ran great till simple stuff started going wrong and cost an arm and a leg to fix. I get chevys cheaply because of family, Ive hated every one. They flet like they were built out of cardboard but at least were cheap to fix. I like my subaru forester, I love both of my honda's. My CRV is my favorite car. Ill only get rid of it to buy the same car in a hybrid.

 

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I've been driving Saab's for a while now. I have a 2003 9-3 and absolutely love it. In 2003 however, they got rid of the hatchback model.

 

The older 9-3 with the hatchback is still a great car and I'd recommend one without hesitation. The hatchback can hold serious amounts of gear if you gigging. I once had 4 88 note keyboards and 2 guitars in the car.

 

I hit a deer at 65mph in my 1999 9-3 about a month after I got it. Even though I tore off the whole front of the car, I hardly felt the impact. I was ready to continue my 2 hour drive home as the car still felt solid. Unfortunatley the radiator was too damaged. In the end it was $8,000 worth of damage. Needless to say I feel very safe in my Saab. I'll have to find a picture of that wreck to post here.

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I don't know which car you should buy.

 

I can't see the poll results without voting, but I don't want to vote because I don't know which car you should buy.

 

BTW:

As of Friday, I'm in the market for some new wheels too. The transmission went out on my old Sable, stranding me and my family about 40 miles from home.

Up until that point, it was a very reliable car. It probably had over two hundred thousand miles on it.

 

I haven't tested anything yet, but I'm strongly considering the Honda Element, or the Toyota Rav4.

I really want something that can haul family AND gear!

Plus, I am sick of hitting my head on the hood everytime I get into the car. I need something more my size.

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Originally posted by EoS:

Based on the types of cars you've got listed, I'm surprised you don't have a BMW 3-series on the roster. Definitely worth consideration.

Too expensive. The only ones in the price range would be older and higher mileage than I'm comfortable with.
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I test drove an Element last Saturday. It was neat, but kind of like a little milk truck, and kind of noisy inside. I have a close friend who has a RAV4, and it is very nice, and holding up well too. I have a Saturn Vue which I bought at the same time she bought the Rav. Her RAV still feels new, mine does not, but there is nothing wrong with the Saturn either. It is a bit bigger inside and has more seating room, but the seats suck, especially compared to the RAV.

 

The element is kind of like a jeep too, in that the seats are 'hosable' as is the inside.

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Originally posted by billster:

[Too expensive. The only ones in the price range would be older and higher mileage than I'm comfortable with.

They hold their resale value VERY well, so if you're looking at used vehicles that not surprising. But they hold their resale value for a reason - they're worth it, and they run forever if they're maintained (that's imperative).

 

In the mid-90's I was in the market for a new car - I looked at Acura's, Mercedes, Audi, & Saab. The 325is I bought was loaded, and yet still middle of the price pack ($10k LESS than the Acura Legend coupe at the time). None of the other cars were anywhere near the quality, drivability, or value. They're one of those cases where you really do get what you pay for.

 

I've now got an '88 5-series sitting in my driveway. It had 190K miles on it. I bought it dirt cheap, and it needs a bit of work to get it inspectable (exhaust & tires). Now that may seem like a lot of miles, but after doing a bunch of research found that it's quite normal to get 300-400k miles out of one. An acura will disintegrate into a pile of rust dust long before that.

 

best of luck in your hunt for wheels

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I voted for the A4 cause it's the one I'd want from the list! I'm also in the market for 2 vehicles atthe minute. I'm replacing a Saab 9000 ('89) which I let roll down my driveway into a tree (with me attached - another story/post) and an '02 Toyota Highlander. I'm replacing the Saab with another 9000 ('93) and the Highlander with the '03 version. Both cars are/have been great in the NE winter (I did put studded snows on them), the toyota having the all wheel drive advantage. Our mechanic rated the Volvo 850 as a good Volvo to own as parts/labor are cheaper/easier than other models, he also suggested Subaru (we've looked at these before, not enough leg room up front). Audis and to a certain degree Saabs are more expensive to repair, but as a Saab driver for a number of years I'd have to say they are worth it. The real star has been the Highlander. If you click down on my sig you get a link to my house that was for sale. Great house, location, view, etc. but what it doesn't show is the 1/8th mile long S shape steep driveway (paved). With studded snows, low gear and a bit of determination that car made it up no problem in the snow (almost better than the Dodge Ram 150 with studs that I use(d) exclusively for plowing). Other pluses are the gas milage (18/22) and it is based on the Camry chasis but doesn't look as boring.

 

I formally withdraw my vote for the A4 (based on the evidence above) and urge at least a test drive of the Highlander.

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Saab is owned by GM

Volvo is owned by Ford

Audi is owned by Volkswagen

Acura is a Honda brand

 

I work for Ford myself and I bought an Acura TL (2002). The Saabs and Volvos depreciate almost as quickly as a Cadillac or Lincoln. Audi is a good car, but the service can be rediculous. 4WD is useless when you have high performance summer tires as most of the better Audi models come with. I have never gotten stuck in the snow with my TL, its also more comfortable, get better mileage, costs less for maintenance, and is larger in the back seat than an Audi. Cons are the handling (FWD and smallish tires) and the crappy factory stereo (although the new TLs have the best factory radio of any car today DVD-Audio).

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