Last post on Jul 16, 2012 at 8:08 AM
You are in the Dodge Charger
What is this discussion about?
Buick Lucerne, Chevrolet Impala, Dodge Charger, Ford Taurus, Hyundai Azera, Toyota Avalon, Nissan Maxima, Pontiac G8, Car Comparisons, Sedan
#1 of 6854 Large Sedans for Under $30,000 Comparision
Jul 22, 2006 (8:44 pm)
This discussion would compare and include cars like the Buick Lucerne, Chevrolet Impala, Chrysler 300, Dodge Charger, Ford Five Hundred/Mercury Montego, Hyundai Azera, Toyota Avalon, Nissan Maxima, Kia Amanti.
#2 of 6854 My pick would be the 500
Jul 22, 2006 (10:20 pm)
Most mid-size family sedans, I feel, are good for a family of 4, but not enough for family of 5. SUVs and vans are not as economic as they used to be, unless you want to spend more money on hybrid SUVs like the Toyota Highlander.
I think most people who buy these cars have families. That said, I would prefer the best protection for my family with a tested car like the Five Hundred, which is also price is at the low end of the mentioned cars above.
The Avalon and the Impala also received acceptable crash scores by IIHS. Avalon is a nice car if you can afford it. The Impala, I think, you could purchase at the lowest price and uses the flex fuel (if you know where to buy it), so sounds like the most economical out of all. Great it provides seating for six but, I wouldn't want my child in the middle, front with a lap belt instead of a 3 point belt and no head rest. I doubt that seat is large enough for an adult. I personally like the styling of the Five Hundred more than the Impala. For example, I like the Five Hundred's "Command Seating." Also Ford has better warranty than Chevy now.
I know it only has 203 horsepower, but I like it because of space, comfort, great crash test scores, and value. Don't need speed when hauling children.
#3 of 6854 Re: My pick would be the 500 [luvmbooty]
Jul 23, 2006 (7:51 am)
I like the 500 for size but I demand more power. I chose the Impala SS, which, I agree is very conservatively designed (although it has grown on me quite a bit). I also think the 500's styling is conservative but it may be the best choice for family's with larger children.
As for flex-fueled vehicles, E85 is already showing how unviable it really is. Check out this forum: http://townhall-talk.edmunds.com/WebX/.f0b617b/1931 . It's a huge forum but there is a lot of information in it.
While I really enjoyed the Chrysler 300/Dodge Charger, both in size AND power, they "skimped" on standard technology. A comparably priced Charger was several thousand more than the Impala. Also, many of the "nifty" little items just aren't available with the other makes.
My opinion on the leading Japanese offerings is that they are overrated and overpriced. That's an argument that will never be solved here and those who prefer them are just as adamant as I am.
That leaves the relative newcomers, Kia, Hyundai, etc. which are proving to be great values. They don't offer all the toys or power I'm looking for but at least there is a significant discount. While we were shopping, we went to a Toyota/Hyundai dealer. The salesman was on auto-pilot thinking we would jump on the Camry bandwagon. We asked and were shown a Sonata but it just wasn't large enough. We weren't aware of the Azera which may have fit our needs. That salesman's failure in objectivity may have cost him that sale. It serves him right, though.
The bottom line is that there are many factors that play a part in a decision. There are a lot of great choices out there and everyone needs to feel they made their own best choice.
#4 of 6854 My personal opinion
Jul 24, 2006 (8:26 am)
Many of the engines in those cars are wheezy and just don't deliver the oomph that I'm used to. Before I bought my 2005 300 Limited I had never owned a car that did not have a v-8 engine. I drove a lot of sedans and found I did not like the size (or lack therof) or the lack of lower they exhibited. The 3.5 L HO engine in the limited delivers almost the same HP as my old Aurora did with the NS V-8. Of course you are talking about the base 300 in this discussion because a Touring or Limited (let alone the "C") are over $30K. I have not driven a 2.7 L base 300 but I'd suspect it's worth the $$ to upgrade the engine to the 3.5 unless you like driving a wheezer.
#5 of 6854 Re: My personal opinion [stevenw]
Jul 24, 2006 (9:53 am)
You could get a fully loaded Chevy Impala SS V8 that has 303 Hp5600 rpms and 323 lbs.-ft. of torque 4400 rpms for under $30,000.
How about a Dodge Caliber RT(not fully loaded) that has 340 Hp 5000 rpms and 390 lbs.-ft of torque 4000 rpms.
Not included in this comparison but a Pontiac Grand Prix GXP V8 fully loaded w/out Navigation that has same Hp and torque as Impala for under $30,000.
Right now there is a $1,000 manufacturer to Dealer incentive for a 2006 Buick Lucerne CXL V8 that has 275 Hp 6000 rpms and 295 lbs.-ft. of torque 4400 rpms for under $30,000 (also not fully loaded).
Your best bet with these cars would probably be the Dodge. It also has the best styling of the 4 above. My point is you could get a V8 for under $30,000, though it sounds like your more used to more upscale sedans.
One of the reasons I started this forum was to see how one could buy a near luxury car at a reasonable price. For example, you could spend equal amounts for a V6 Camry or Accord as the 4 cars mentioned above. They probably aren't as refined as the Camry or Accord but definitely more spacious and more comfortable.
#6 of 6854 Point taken....
Jul 24, 2006 (2:10 pm)
Although I don't consider a Caliber to be a "large sedan". Maybe a Magnum would be more fitting in this comparison. I think a base Magnum is under $30K as well.
#7 of 6854 Re: Large Sedans for Under $30,000 Comparision [luvmbooty]
Jul 24, 2006 (2:47 pm)
Great suggestion for a new topic! My vote is for the Avalon. Consumer Reports ranked it number 1 in the Large Sedan category. As they said, "The Avalon offers a lot of car for the money. It has a limo-like rear seat that can even recline. The quality of the cabin materials is almost as impressive as that of Toyota's luxury Lexus line. The Avalon rides very comfortably and quietly." Those are consumer reports words, not mine, but I definitely agree with them. Not to mention the engine which is a V6 with 268 HP 6200 RPM and 248 ft-lbs 4700 RPM. All this with a mileage rating of 22 City/31 Highway. In fact, I just returned from a 357 mile trip visiting the in-laws and I actually got even better than that. I got 31.9 MPG and that was driving mostly 70 MPH. Of course you can't get a fully loaded Avalon for under $30K, but you can, and I did, get one that has a lot of great features for less than $30K including the reclining rear seats (great for passengers on long trips) and dual zone automatic climate system (so the wife can set the temp to what she wants and I can set the temp to what I want). Also, as someone else pointed out already, "The Avalon and the Impala also received acceptable crash scores by IIHS." All this made the Avalon the vehicle for me!
#8 of 6854 Re: Large Sedans for Under $30,000 Comparision [buzz123]
Jul 24, 2006 (6:49 pm)
I like the Avalon, too. I just bought a 2006 RAV4. The engine performs the same and so does the 2007 Camry. I think they all share the same engine. Great performance with descent fuel economy. I just hope either of us don't get a recall.
#9 of 6854 Re: Large Sedans for Under $30,000 Comparision [luvmbooty]
Jul 25, 2006 (4:12 am)
Yep, you're right about it being the same engine in the Avalon, 2006 RAV4 and 2007 Camry. I know what you mean about all this recall stuff they've been talking about. I hope either of us don't get a recall, too. Actually, we've been thinking of getting the RAV4 to replace my wife's Corolla. Since I got the 2006 Avalon, we'll probably wait another year or two before getting the RAV4 to space out the vehicles a bit. Looks like they did a great job with the redesign. How has your RAV4 been so far?
#10 of 6854 Re: Large Sedans for Under $30,000 Comparision [buzz123]
Jul 25, 2006 (5:27 am)
Excellent! The drive is smooth and quiet. We bought the V6 4x4 (part time) w/following options:remote start, curtain side airbags, DTR lights, 3rd row seat (children only), roof rack, mud guards, tow prep, and carpet floor mats. It was hard to find the V6 with the third row. Had mostly 4 cyls with 3rd row in NY/NJ area. With the extra weight, you'd want more power, right?
I think the 3rd row is better than Highlander because 3rd row is 50/50 folding and the bay of where the seat folds in to gives you more room for luggage. There really isn't a whole lot but the Highlander's luggage space is nonexistent when seat is up. We payed $25,400 for it.
I recently went to msn.com and saw Consumer Reports has rated it finally. It's the top rated small SUV now beating the previous winner, the Subaru Forester scored 71, RAV4 4cyl scored 77, V6 scored 83.
I wouldn't rule out the Forester because of IIHS.org crash test perfect rating. Back seat is a little cramped but plenty of luggage space. The RAV4s rear seat adjusts forward or back which helps 3rd row leg room.