Last post on Jul 12, 2010 at 2:33 PM
You are in the Wagons
What is this discussion about?
Volvo V50, BMW 3 Series, Audi A3, Wagon
Mar 03, 2006 (9:27 am)
This is a newbee but sounds very promising, especially if the (most likely Mitsubishi sourced) AWD works as well as promised. Its interior's not as luxurous as the Audi or Volvo, but you are paying thousands less!
Also, like Volvo and BMW, Dodge is allowing owners to choose between all around performance, or focused driving (SRT models).
The Audi A3 Quattro is sold _only_ with sports suspension and tires.
#10 of 38 Re: Dodge Caliber AWD [kurtamaxxxguy]
Mar 03, 2006 (11:09 am)
The problem with the Dodge Caliber is that it is part of the Dodge/Chrysler family. Thats a HUGE problem, especially for a first year car.... anyone remember the 95 Neons released in 94. The chances of NOT getting a lemon on the new Dodge Caliber are probably about the same as winning the lottery in California.
#11 of 38 Re: Dodge Caliber AWD [andres3]
Mar 03, 2006 (12:11 pm)
we'll have to wait and see. The Caliber's apparently to be built in the USA.
But I agree, the Neon was dogsville (though its PT Cruiser variant does well in reliability studies).
VW's not particularly good on reliability; ConSumUnion's latest survey had VW and some Audis in the cellar, along with Mercedes and some GM products.
Does reliability matter in a performance mini-wagon?
#12 of 38 Re: Dodge Caliber AWD [kurtamaxxxguy]
Mar 03, 2006 (12:25 pm)
Does reliability matter in a performance mini-wagon?
I think reliability and durability always matter. The have an effect on resale value, and money matters. But mainly, even in a performance/sport car, which maybe you are just using as your weekend driver, reliability still matters!
Well, your 0-60 MPH performance time on a car that is broken down is infinity. Even a BIG SUV with a small 4 banger can beat you!
Mar 03, 2006 (3:17 pm)
USA TODAY (3/3/06) reviewed it. In nutshell, coarse engine, no racy feeling, unpleasant controls, but uplevel interior, regular grade gas, and rich materials.
I hope Edmunds will have a hot-hatch comparison soon; will be fun to see how all the players stack up.
#14 of 38 Re: Wrt the Dodge Caliber [kurtamaxxxguy]
Mar 12, 2006 (10:48 pm)
Edmunds' review didn't care much for the crappy Dodge Caliber either.
#15 of 38 AWD Vibe going bye bye
Mar 30, 2006 (2:26 pm)
Apparently the AWD Pontiac Vibe is not selling well, so says autonews. So Pontiac will discontinue the AWD version _and_ the GT version after 2006.
These models inability to meet ultralow emissions standards for 2007 was also a factor.
Cutoff for dealer orders is end of May, 2006. Only model to be sold from then on will be the Base version.
Sad to see the AWD model go, though it was badly underpowered.
#16 of 38 Re: Wrt the Dodge Caliber [andres3]
Apr 06, 2006 (1:02 am)
So, since several quite different cars have come up, recently, and I just happened to drive a Cobalt (not Caliber) for a week, here is a mini-review. (2.2 liter engine with ATM – not an SRT-4).
From the outside, in real life, it does not look all that much different from the Neon, except for the higher body line and lower roof line that leave little visibility. Speaking of which, the rear window is tiny and obstructed by that huge trunk handle, so don't plan on parking this car anywhere. At any rate, the car suffers a bit from the "baby of" look, as in baby of other dodges, like the Polo compared to the GTI, or the Mazda3 compared to the 6, or the discontinued small Mercedes compared to... you get the drift. The interior looked like what to expect from the car I got: a rental.
Steering is direct, so is handling under normal city driving. When push comes to shove, push wins and there is absolutely no support from the rear suspension. My ’93 Golf with torsion beam axle handles better under power, and even more so does the first generation Focus. I am starting to wonder how many parts they needed to (or actually did?) replace for the SRT-4.
The engine has enough torque for everyday driving and makes the tires chirp easily in first. Driving up a mountain at moderate altitude is another story. Don't try passing another car above 60 mph going uphill, even if you have no other passengers or luggage in this car. In other words, plenty of low-end torque for everyday driving, but not much power at higher revs – reminds me of the 2.5 Jetta. Except, you would not really want any adult sit in the rear seats, in this car.
The suspension is supple and forgiving, but allowing for somewhat above-average noise to penetrate the cabin. Reminds me of mid-to-late 80's Saturns; just a tad stiffer.
I got 18 mpg average, largely highways at decent speed, including mountain passes. A bit much for a 4 cyl. that already had 25,000 miles on the clock.
Sorry, but a bare-bones Focus wins over this one any day, in any category.
#17 of 38 I love my A3!
Apr 27, 2006 (1:56 pm)
I vote my 2.0T A3 sport package in ocean blue as car of the year 2006.
But Audi and it's dealers better watch those fit and finish issues!!!
Most irritating (less than perfection issue) so far is the rattle coming from the back of the car. Can't locate exactly what it is yet, but its noticeably loud over bumps and vibrations. (Damn shame I didn't notice anything during test drive, or for that matter in the other 3 A3's I drove before deciding to buy.
#18 of 38 Re: Best AWD Performance Wagon under $40k [ccd1]
Jun 01, 2007 (11:11 am)
Is there a reason you are excluding the Subaru Outback?
With your financial requirement you would be in the top of the line model with cash to spare. Either the H6 or the I-4 engine are great and the Outback is larger than the previously mentioned WRX.