Last post on Oct 15, 2013 at 8:22 AM
You are in the SUVs
What is this discussion about?
GMC Acadia, Hyundai Santa Fe, Ford Taurus X, Toyota RAV4, Nissan Rogue, Honda Accord Crosstour, Dodge Journey, Car Buying, Car Comparisons, SUV
#6900 of 7355 Re: SUV comparisons [mdphotog]
Jul 15, 2009 (12:40 pm)
My wife was all set to purchase a 2009 Subaru Forester Limited. I talked her into test driving the 2009 Forester XT Limited. For just a little bit more ($2000), you get a SUBSTANTIALLY higher performing engine. Once she test drove it, she was sold, and purchased the vehicle that day.
I would highly recommend test driving a Forester XT, before deciding on the base model.
>I've looked at the following:
>1. RAV4 Limited
>2. CRV EX
>3. Nissan Rogue SL
>4. 2010 Equinox LS
>5. Jeep Patriot Limited
>6. Subaru Forester Limited
#6901 of 7355 Re: SUV comparisons [robm2]
Jul 16, 2009 (6:19 am)
Thanks for the info, but unfortunately, my only Subaru option is what they have left on the lot for the 2009's, offering low finance rates on the 09's that I would like to take advantage of. Also, the dealer knocked off $2100 the MSRP, which is well below invoice.
#6902 of 7355 Re: SUV comparisons [mdphotog]
Jul 16, 2009 (12:11 pm)
I'm looking as well, although my time-line is sometime before end of year. I think our criteria may be different as I'm looking for a fairly loaded AWD V6 in the $29-33K range (MSRP before discounts & rebates). 5 seater required; 3rd row not really necessary.
RAV4: Eliminated from consideration due to hatch design: spare tire impedes visibility, hatch opens to the [wrong] side and not up.
CR-V, Rogue, Forester, Patriot: No V6. But even without that qualification, I just haven't warmed to the CR-V's styling, my wife hates the look of the Murano/Rogue, the Forester XT requires premium gas, and I don't care for the old fashioned Jeep styling.
Equinox: On our list to drive. I'm really hoping I like it, too.
Also under consideration for us are the Mitsu Outlander & Hyundai Santa Fe. We've driven both of those so far. Here are my comments about the Outlander. If hatch usability is important, take note of my comments on the Mitsu hatch design.
We did test drive the Outlander this morning. Nice ride overall. There's a bit more road noise than I would prefer, however that's balanced by it actually having a smoother ride than my sedan. I went over some road that's due for resurfacing to compare. The stereo is, well, rather more than enough. That's an understatement; it kicks a**.
The engine could use a little more low end torque but once it gets moving acceleration was fine. I can live with it. You can switch between 2 & 4 wheel drive at any time; just twirl the selector knob.
Ergonomics were good. With the front drivers seat all the way back there's plenty of leg room in the rear seats (which also slide forward/backwards and recline). It has 3rd row seats but they're really only good as torture devices; they'll stay folded flat into the floor. Oh, slide the 2nd row seat back and the front passenger seat can recline fully prone making it into a single bed more or less.
Speaking of the flat floor, the second row seats fold flat (standard 60/40 split). That's expected nowadays. What's nice, though, is that the rear hatch is split about 85% upper & 15% lower (see image #2). Open the upper hatch and liftover is fine; not too tall at all even for my 5' tall wife. But lower that bottom 15% and it extends the flat floor outside the car. This give you something to stand on (almost 500 pound weight limit) to put things on the roof rack or you can close the upper hatch with the lower open so you can haul home 2x4s and other long items.
There's a 115V outlet & plenty of other accessories. Good storage although the rear cupholders are in the door and as such probably won't hold Super Ultra Mega Gulp cups.
And on the Santa Fe:
I drove the Santa Fe this afternoon and it was .. fine. Good power off the line; better than the Outlander. But the ride was boring. The suspension not as composed as the Outlander. The interior was not as nice. Things we, again, fine but nothing stood out. The Outie has better storage bins up front and placement of things like the cupholders was better.
So far, I've given the Outlander a rating of 85/100 and about a 72/100 to the Santa Fe. We'll be doing more research and probably more drives over the coming days.
I'll add that I'll probably keep it for 8-12 years so resale value isn't an issue. Also, my current car is a Mitsu and my wife's is a Hyundai so we're already comfortable with the brands and local dealers. Both vehicles have had no reliability issues, including 10 years and 150K miles on my Galant.
The Outlander's recommended by CR as are the RAV4, CR-V, Rogue, Santa Fe, and Forester. The Jeep & Chevy are not.
Also, most of these get good crash test scores but the Jeep doesn't. You might also check with your insurance agent to see which ones are most/least expensive to insure.
#6903 of 7355 Re: SUV comparisons [fushigi]
Jul 16, 2009 (5:45 pm)
Thanks...I'm going to a dealership on Monday that also carries the Outlander. I'll take a look at it. I drove the Equinox and it's nice. I thought it didn't shift as smooth as the RAV or the CRV. The only thing that bothered me was that GM still doesn't quite get it. They have this cheap, hard plastic spacer to fill in the space when you slide the backseat forward(about 8")...why it couldn't be carpet, who knows. Also, the rear seat backs do not fold down all the way.
#6904 of 7355 Re: SUV comparisons [mdphotog]
Jul 17, 2009 (6:57 am)
Thanks, that's something to look for when we drive the Equinox. Do you think a cargo mat would cover the plastic easily enough?
The second & 3rd row seats do fold flat in the Outlander. And in the model we looked at, anyway, the whole surface was carpeted.
Good luck and let us know how your searching goes!
#6905 of 7355 Re: SUV comparisons [fushigi]
Jul 17, 2009 (7:06 am)
I've eliminated the Rav4 due to the hatch and external spare as well. I'm eliminating the 2010 Equinox and Journey because I refuse to buy a car from the government. Looks like Murano is still my front-runner. Santa Fe was OK but just felt a little blah and boring to me. I haven't warmed to CRV styling either. Venza, Edge and 2010 Outback are still possibilities that I haven't driven yet. I haven't thought much about Outlander because the Mits dealer here went belly up a few months ago, but now I see the local Infiniti dealer has picked up the Mits line.
#6906 of 7355 Re: SUV comparisons [loach]
Jul 17, 2009 (3:05 pm)
I dislike the government bailout as well, but that has actually encouraged me to give the domestics more consideration than I would otherwise. After all, if GM and Chrysler can recover, then we get our tax dollar investment back. If not, it's lost.
But that's a discussion for another thread. I'd much rather discuss the merits of the vehicles.
We will probably look at the Venza as well but it gets expensive fast. The Edge was a consideration but I think I'd like the Taurus X better.
Mitsu's dealer network can be a concern, I admit. But so can Subaru's. I'm in the Chicago suburbs, though, so it's not much of a concern to me. I drive by 2 Mitsu dealers and a Subie dealer on my daily commute. I also drive by the area Lamborghini dealer, but I haven't stopped in for a test drive.
#6907 of 7355 Re: SUV comparisons [fushigi]
Jul 17, 2009 (5:35 pm)
I don't see cargo mats as a option for the Equinox but the way the seats fold, I don't think a cargo mat would work. Check out the interior photo gallery...http://www.chevrolet.com/vehicles/2010/equinox/gallery.do
Will let you know about the Outlander.
#6908 of 7355 Re: SUV comparisons [mdphotog]
Jul 18, 2009 (2:20 pm)
I see what you mean now. Don't think there's much you can do about that. I'm also not pleased that those back seats don't go any flatter. That means a lot less flexibility for trips to IKEA and other places where you encounter long, flat boxes.
#6909 of 7355 Re: SUV comparisons [mdphotog]
Jul 20, 2009 (9:33 am)
2010 Equinox 4-cylinder gets 32 MPG highway with automatic tranny on the newly stiffened Theta chassis. Much better than the competition, and even beats the Ford Escape Hybrid's highway MPG, by the way. Beats everybody in the small-to-midsize SUV category. And I wonder if GM was using the new Goodyear Fuel Max (low rolling resistance, high traction) tires on it to get that. If they didn't use those in the EPA highway cycle test, then you would be able to add another 1 MPG to that already-good total.