Last post on Jul 16, 2009 at 5:31 PM
You are in the Sedans
What is this discussion about?
Chevrolet Cobalt, Ford Focus, Honda Civic, Hyundai Elantra, Honda Fit, Mazda MAZDA3, Toyota Corolla, Toyota Yaris, Nissan Sentra, Sedan
#1050 of 1205 Re: Meh to Both [backy]
Jun 14, 2008 (4:20 pm)
On the Cobalt XFE, the big difference between the 5MT and 4AT on fuel economy is interesting. That is pretty rare these days. It's more common for the MT and AT numbers to be pretty close, or even for the AT to get slightly better EPA FE numbers than the MT. I wonder what Chevy did to the MT coupe to allow it to achieve those really high FE numbers--much higher than the AT? Or maybe the AT on the Cobalt is just inefficient?
My understanding is the the XFE is only available in manual transmission. (if there is an automatic, it gets the same mileage as the original Cobalt automatic) The main changes were low-rolling resistance tires and tweaking with gear ratios and engine computer settings.
(the following is only my conjecture)
I think the reason it was only done to the manual, and not the automatic, is because that way they could get bragging rights to "class leading." Now the Cobalt's highway mileage exceeds that of all 2008 "coupe's with manual transmissions."
This is a very very clever gimmick. The mileage with the automatic was never good (only 31), so it would hard to beat the Civic auto with 36. The civic manual only gets 34, whereas the original cobalt got 33. Tweak the manual, it's much easier to beat Honda (1 MPG vs 5 MPG to rise). However, you need 36 to beat the Ford Focus at 35. Still, it's easier to go 3 MPG than 5, and if you miss, you still beat Civic.
The "coupe" qualification conveniently eliminates the Toyota Corolla and Yaris from the category, which get 37 and 36 MPG highway already.
Voila, by tweaking the manual version of the Cobalt, Chevy has a "class leading" vehicle in fuel economy.
#1051 of 1205 Re: Meh to Both [no_one]
Jun 14, 2008 (5:09 pm)
Good analysis. I think someone in Chevy marketing earned his/her bonus for that one.
And it worked... for me at least. It intrigued me enough to stop in at my local Chevy dealer today and take one of those coupes for a test drive. But as I waited around on the showfloor for someone to help me, I poured over the Cobalt LT sedan sitting there. As I looked it over and sat in it, front and back, and touched/felt everything, I suddenly thought to myself: "Nah.....", and left. Even if the FE was excellent, I didn't think it would be a car I could live with for the 10-12 years I plan to have it in my family. The really tight rear seat of the coupe (sedan isn't great, either) was the biggest issue, but the bottom line was I already have at least 3 other cars in my sights that I like a whole lot better than the Cobalt, and would not cost any more than the Cobalt comparably equipped.
#1052 of 1205 Re: Meh to Both [backy]
Jun 15, 2008 (1:51 am)
I think I've seen your argument about 10 times now backy
And none of those reasons apply to my thinking as it's kinda clear in my regard what cars I find to be better. I'd also like to note that even in my friend's Civic coupe, I had zero problems with legroom in the back seat. And neither did some of my larger friends. So this is a YMMV issue. Not an issue for me.
Jun 15, 2008 (6:31 am)
It's quite obvious that some of us in Edmunds have our favorite cars and car makers and we could keep going round and round on this subject. We all have our own likes and dislikes about certain models and our minds won't be changed. It's a good thing since we can give others who are looking for new cars the benefit of our opinions since ownership is the best way to give advice on how these cars function on a daily basis.
My oldest likes my Civic much better than her mom's 3s but prefers the Elantra to anything else. No matter what I try to tell her, she's got her mind made up and will probably end up with one. I'd prefer her to look elsewhere, but she's quite happy with the choice for now...so I've let it go for now. All good choices never the less.
Still very intrigued about the new Civic LX-S model.
#1054 of 1205 Re: Meh to Both [moocow1]
Jun 15, 2008 (8:15 am)
Different people have different opinons on cars. And different sized bodies.
If you don't like to read my opinions, Page Down works pretty well.
Jun 15, 2008 (12:47 pm)
pardon me for asking, but what in hell's bells is a YMMV issue? Something I should know about?
#1056 of 1205 Re: Ummm. [iluvmysephia1]
Jun 15, 2008 (2:09 pm)
Your Mileage May Vary. Another way of saying (I think) "try before you buy." Which I agree with 100%.
Jun 15, 2008 (2:34 pm)
the acronym party is obviously not just a Boeing Co. thing. When I worked for Boeing many co-workers got really tired of all of the Boeing acronyms. They really loaded you up there with acronyms, I guess for them to save some time. I also agree with the "try before you buy" idea.
#1058 of 1205 Re: Cobalt XFE [poncho167]
Jun 15, 2008 (3:29 pm)
If you want ride, comfort, and quietness then the Cobalt leads the compact class in those regards.
Really? First time I am hearing this. There are many cars in this class that trump the Cobalt in terms of ride, comfort, and quietness. It is a nice average car, but certainly not the leader.
I don't see how a Hyundai got put into the top of the conversation because its not quite there for that status.
Again, I am going to have to disagree with you on this one. In my opinion, Elantra may not be the strongest (overall) in the class, but it does the job in most areas damn well - several areas very well (i.e. braking, ride, features, comfort, quality, space, NVH). CR didn't put the Elantra SE at the top of the billing just for fun. Let me put it this way, even without the warranty, I would have placed the Elantra above the Cobalt. The Elantra is just an excellent automobile, while the Cobalt is, hate to be blunt, just average.
#1059 of 1205 CR's take on the Cobalt
Jun 15, 2008 (3:56 pm)
Oh man, I thought I was critical, look at this from the July's CR:
Cobalt LT: Highs - turning circle | Lows: Engine noise, fuel economy, driving position, seating comfort, fit and finish
That was just the summary, more issues within the detailed review.
Of course, CR ranked the Cobalt in the bottom two among the compact sedans, ahead of only the Suzuki Forenza.