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Angry-American
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Posted: 2/8/2012 11:14:40 PM
I was looking at the RAV-4 offerings and size wise they would be perfect, but not having real 4 wheel drive is gonna suck. I am looking for a SUV that I can commute during the winter in the northern midwest. It must be reliable as hell, able to handle to cold, and something that has enough room to allow me to bug-out in for a few days if I get caught in a winter storm and get decent gas mileage. I will be looking at a 13 hour trip every few weeks or so with the vehicle plus around town and a lot of time sitting in a parking lot. It needs to be rugged, but doesnt exactly need to be a wall climber either, it will be a road vehicle used to get me out of trouble every now and then. A small side profile would be nice as well to help with bucking those winds.




Its too bad we cant have Toyota Diesel landcruisers in the states, a bare bones basic version would be kick ass, like what you see on the nature shows and the like.




Back to reality though, I don't need anything full sized as I don't need to haul or tow anything that heavy and the lack of gas mileage would be a waste. The only other options I am seeing out there are Jeep and I really don't want to go the route of another Chrysler product, I do not like their lack of quality and really crappy body fitment. All of the Chrysler products I have seen or used over the past 10 years or so leak dust betweek the doors and seals into the interior on really dusty dirt roads and its a pita to keep up with when you live on 2.5 miles of gravel roads.




I appreciate any suggestions.

Sin lies only in hurting other people unnecessarily. All other “sins” are invented nonsense. (Hurting yourself is not sinful—just stupid.) ~ Robert Heinlein
Krochus
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Posted: 2/8/2012 11:42:19 PM
Define decent gas mileage
Angry-American
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Posted: 2/8/2012 11:51:54 PM

Originally Posted By Krochus:
Define decent gas mileage

Ideally in RAV4 range, 27mpg or so with the 4 cylinder.





I am doing a lot of looking online, and it looks like the best I am gonna get is gonna be 22ish and its either going to have to be GM or Ford, no one else really makes anything in that range it seems and they are all over priced. Its been 10 years since I have been car shopping, I am suffering from sticker shock from hell here.

Sin lies only in hurting other people unnecessarily. All other “sins” are invented nonsense. (Hurting yourself is not sinful—just stupid.) ~ Robert Heinlein
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Posted: 2/9/2012 12:33:32 AM
[Last Edit: 2/9/2012 12:41:50 AM by GlutealCleft]
Originally Posted By Angry-American:
Ideally in RAV4 range, 27mpg or so with the 4 cylinder.


I think you're trying to defy the laws of physics. RAV4s get better mileage than "real 4WD" SUVs precisely because they are not "real 4WD" SUVs.

Some of the real 4WD suvs can get you into the low to mid 20's in highway MPG, but that's going to drop a LOT in the city... by 30-50%.

If it's mostly a road vehicle... do you really need real 4WD? My wife's Element, with on-demand 4WD and GOOD tires has truly impressed me in snow, ice, and mud, and I've taken it places where a lot of folks wouldn't think such a vehicle would go. In the high Rockies in passes where they won't let you drive without chains or 4WD, I've never had a problem. My daily driver is real 4WD, but honestly, for street and highway use (including winter), I've never seen a situation where it would have made a difference over her on-demand setup.
Angry-American
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Posted: 2/9/2012 12:56:14 AM

Originally Posted By GlutealCleft:
Originally Posted By Angry-American:
Ideally in RAV4 range, 27mpg or so with the 4 cylinder.


I think you're trying to defy the laws of physics. RAV4s get better mileage than "real 4WD" SUVs precisely because they are not "real 4WD" SUVs.

Some of the real 4WD suvs can get you into the low to mid 20's in highway MPG, but that's going to drop a LOT in the city... by 30-50%.

If it's mostly a road vehicle... do you really need real 4WD? My wife's Element, with on-demand 4WD and GOOD tires has truly impressed me in snow, ice, and mud, and I've taken it places where a lot of folks wouldn't think such a vehicle would go. In the high Rockies in passes where they won't let you drive without chains or 4WD, I've never had a problem. My daily driver is real 4WD, but honestly, for street and highway use (including winter), I've never seen a situation where it would have made a difference over her on-demand setup.

Maybe I am worrying it to much but I am looking at year round driving from Iowa to northern North Dakota every few weeks. I plan to keep a kit(arctic sleeping bag, food/water, shovel, lantern etc) in the vehicle in case I need to pull over due to bad weather and just live it out in the vehicle if needed for a day or two. I just figured it would be smarter to have a more capable vehicle, but I think your right, the chance of that happening is a lot less than what I will need which will be a good run about town/commuting vehicle.




Still, it would be damn nice if the EPA would lift off a little and allow small diesels in American vehicles.


Sin lies only in hurting other people unnecessarily. All other “sins” are invented nonsense. (Hurting yourself is not sinful—just stupid.) ~ Robert Heinlein
Rook85
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Posted: 2/9/2012 1:10:21 AM
Unobtainium.....


I've got a 2nd gen CRV 05. Great vehicle its by no means an offroad SUV or truck but the traction control and Honda's realtime AWD does a great job when roads are slick. Best part its a FWD and shifts power back if necessary so the weight is always over the drive train.
It gets me around Idaho no problem, I run decent all seasons and have no difficulties getting to the ski runs.

If you want a true 4wd you will pay for it in cost, ride comfort,and milage. If its what you want great and if you will actually use it awesome, but lets face it 80% of the 4wd crowd doesn't

For your purposes your basically at crossover care based SUV's CRV, Rav4, Forrester, or the domestic equivalent. Your lookigng at mid 25-30 hwy and 20-26 in town. If you want better mpg your down to FWD sedans.

Realistically it comes to how much space inside the vehicle do you need. (I've fit a chest freezer and a recliner in mine before on separate occasions and have a 4x8 trailer for dirt bikes etc.

doc_Zox
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Posted: 2/9/2012 1:19:41 AM
I was told at a stealer ship that my 2002 grand Cherokee with 100k on it,
is worth 2500 bucks in a trade. I think I will drive it another 100k.
The door seals are fine on my gc, I get about 15 mpg with the V8.

A "crossover" suv like a rav or an element or a Suzuki won't hold up
to the rough stuff like a like a truck base suv, but they do get decent mileage
and tend to float on top over stuff rather than sink in.
I had a sidekick that ran great on the snow covered roads,
but it could not push through deep drifts.


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Posted: 2/9/2012 1:27:39 AM
Honestly? It sounds as if you want a Subaru station wagon/5-door.
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Angry-American
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Posted: 2/9/2012 1:29:16 AM

Originally Posted By Rook85:
Unobtainium.....


I've got a 2nd gen CRV 05. Great vehicle its by no means an offroad SUV or truck but the traction control and Honda's realtime AWD does a great job when roads are slick. Best part its a FWD and shifts power back if necessary so the weight is always over the drive train.
It gets me around Idaho no problem, I run decent all seasons and have no difficulties getting to the ski runs.

If you want a true 4wd you will pay for it in cost, ride comfort,and milage. If its what you want great and if you will actually use it awesome, but lets face it 80% of the 4wd crowd doesn't

For your purposes your basically at crossover care based SUV's CRV, Rav4, Forrester, or the domestic equivalent. Your lookigng at mid 25-30 hwy and 20-26 in town. If you want better mpg your down to FWD sedans.

Realistically it comes to how much space inside the vehicle do you need. (I've fit a chest freezer and a recliner in mine before on separate occasions and have a 4x8 trailer for dirt bikes etc.


Space wise I just need enough room for me, my gear and a place to lay down stretched out if needed as I may need to spend a night every now and then in the vehicle. Any one of the SUV's you have mentioned would probably work. The Subaru Forester and Honda CRV I really like on paper more than the RAV4, they seem to have more features for your dollars. Unfortunately the closest Honda or Subaru dealership to where I live is 2 hours away, not sure I want to deal with long distance warranty work and the like.





Thanks again for the brain juice, you guys have gotten me thinking along the right track I beleive.

Sin lies only in hurting other people unnecessarily. All other “sins” are invented nonsense. (Hurting yourself is not sinful—just stupid.) ~ Robert Heinlein
Angry-American
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Posted: 2/9/2012 1:31:32 AM

Originally Posted By doc_Zox:
I was told at a stealer ship that my 2002 grand Cherokee with 100k on it,
is worth 2500 bucks in a trade. I think I will drive it another 100k.
The door seals are fine on my gc, I get about 15 mpg with the V8.

A "crossover" suv like a rav or an element or a Suzuki won't hold up
to the rough stuff like a like a truck base suv, but they do get decent mileage
and tend to float on top over stuff rather than sink in.
I had a sidekick that ran great on the snow covered roads,
but it could not push through deep drifts.


Come on up to Iowa about August, we will run your jeep down a dirt road. I guarantee you will need to roll the windows down to get some clean air as the interior will be full of dust roiling around. Hell, bring a brand new one, it will leak as well. Chrysler does not do bodies well at all.

Sin lies only in hurting other people unnecessarily. All other “sins” are invented nonsense. (Hurting yourself is not sinful—just stupid.) ~ Robert Heinlein
jdubya87
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Posted: 2/9/2012 1:58:14 AM
My fwd accord did just fine in NE and IA snow.

I would try and find a low miles saturn vue, with the honda sourced v6 in it. Same motor that's in the pilot and odyssey, except the vue is like 1000lbs lighter. FWD or AWD, plenty of room in the back, lots of power, and decent gas mileage. I'm getting about 23 in the city hauling ass with my K&N CAI.
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ArmedPete
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Posted: 2/9/2012 8:28:22 AM
Originally Posted By jdubya87:
My fwd accord did just fine in NE and IA snow.

I would try and find a low miles saturn vue, with the honda sourced v6 in it. Same motor that's in the pilot and odyssey, except the vue is like 1000lbs lighter. FWD or AWD, plenty of room in the back, lots of power, and decent gas mileage. I'm getting about 23 in the city hauling ass with my K&N CAI.


My girlfriend has been very happy with her V6 AWD VUE. It is not an off road ride, but it does great in the snow and on our long gravel driveway. She drove it through some really deep mud taking feed to the farm this fall and somehow managed to drive it out of that too. Honda powered smooth ride on the highway too.
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Guardian05
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Posted: 2/9/2012 9:44:55 AM
OP i have been looking at the new Grand Cherokee's.

I think people should be allowed to do anything they want. We haven't tried that for a while. Maybe this time it'll work.
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jdubya87
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Posted: 2/9/2012 9:46:07 AM
Originally Posted By ArmedPete:
Originally Posted By jdubya87:
My fwd accord did just fine in NE and IA snow.

I would try and find a low miles saturn vue, with the honda sourced v6 in it. Same motor that's in the pilot and odyssey, except the vue is like 1000lbs lighter. FWD or AWD, plenty of room in the back, lots of power, and decent gas mileage. I'm getting about 23 in the city hauling ass with my K&N CAI.


My girlfriend has been very happy with her V6 AWD VUE. It is not an off road ride, but it does great in the snow and on our long gravel driveway. She drove it through some really deep mud taking feed to the farm this fall and somehow managed to drive it out of that too. Honda powered smooth ride on the highway too.


+1 to all that. Make sure to swap the atf at least annually, and flush it (passive, ie no pressure) at least once in its lifetime. Honda transmission is an icky slush box.
"Es mejor morir a pie que vivir arrodillado" José Martí

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Posted: 2/9/2012 9:48:42 AM
[Last Edit: 2/9/2012 9:52:26 AM by ColtRifle]
Wife and I have a Highlander and like it a lot. Gets the same MPG roughly on slick roads as on pavement. For your driving conditions AWD will work much better. True 4x4 is better if you are doing true off road stuff. However, AWD is better for on road driving IMO. My 4x4 truck's gas milage crashes when I use the 4x4. The Highlander gets pretty much the same regardless.

We get about 24 mpg on the highway and 21 around town.

The wife drives harder than I do so her mpg is always a little lower than mine.
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Posted: 2/15/2012 3:54:42 PM
Quite looking at little bitch cars, I mean really a Rav4? You might as well be searching for a Geo Tracker.............Go get you a Hummer and be done with it! Or if your a solid import yuppie then Sooby's and Toy's are all great like a Forester or even a 4runner.....................
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Posted: 2/15/2012 4:04:39 PM
Have you looked at an old Jeep Liberty or Cherokee Diesel? I cant remember what year they made them but I read they got decent mileage.

My wife and I bought a new Kia Sorento last November and it is "suppose" to get 30mpg on the highway but we have not got any where near that yet. It is an AWD model fully loaded with the 3rd row. It really suits our needs as we do not need a 4x4 around here.
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Angry-American
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Posted: 2/15/2012 6:07:40 PM

Originally Posted By GoRebels:
Quite looking at little bitch cars, I mean really a Rav4? You might as well be searching for a Geo Tracker.............Go get you a Hummer and be done with it! Or if your a solid import yuppie then Sooby's and Toy's are all great like a Forester or even a 4runner.....................

First I want decent gas mileage, the 4runner aint gonna get it plus its way to high priced, trying to be practical here, and the Forester is in the same category as the RAV4 so it must be a bitch car as well. I am not a improt yuppie, but I sure as hell don't like the lack of quality in GM/Chrysler products and I don't like the Ford offerings in the small SUV category.

Fuck a Hummer, shitty mileage and a civilian cant buy a new real hummer anyway so whats the point? Id rather have a vehicle that is practical and can get in and out of parking a lot easier. If I had my druthers I would be driving an old diesel FJ40 but that's about as practical as a parka in the Sudan.

I am actually torn between the Forester and the CR-V right now, both seem to give you more for your buck than the RAV4 and are all in the same price point. Quality seems to be the same for all three as well.
Sin lies only in hurting other people unnecessarily. All other “sins” are invented nonsense. (Hurting yourself is not sinful—just stupid.) ~ Robert Heinlein
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Posted: 2/15/2012 6:11:48 PM
[Last Edit: 2/15/2012 6:12:47 PM by fxntime]
Ford Escape. May not be quite the mileage you want but they are pretty dang decent. I would suggest you go for the V6 because the 4 is not very peppy.

You might not like Ford but I can't really fault the Escape.
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Posted: 2/15/2012 7:11:26 PM
Go with a 4runner or xterra if you want body on frame and real 4wd.
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Posted: 2/15/2012 8:16:10 PM
Originally Posted By Angry-American:

Originally Posted By GoRebels:
Quite looking at little bitch cars, I mean really a Rav4? You might as well be searching for a Geo Tracker.............Go get you a Hummer and be done with it! Or if your a solid import yuppie then Sooby's and Toy's are all great like a Forester or even a 4runner.....................

First I want decent gas mileage, the 4runner aint gonna get it plus its way to high priced, trying to be practical here, and the Forester is in the same category as the RAV4 so it must be a bitch car as well. I am not a improt yuppie, but I sure as hell don't like the lack of quality in GM/Chrysler products and I don't like the Ford offerings in the small SUV category.

Fuck a Hummer, shitty mileage and a civilian cant buy a new real hummer anyway so whats the point? Id rather have a vehicle that is practical and can get in and out of parking a lot easier. If I had my druthers I would be driving an old diesel FJ40 but that's about as practical as a parka in the Sudan.

I am actually torn between the Forester and the CR-V right now, both seem to give you more for your buck than the RAV4 and are all in the same price point. Quality seems to be the same for all three as well.


Not sure how you are seeing that since Honda has been sitting on its ass with the crv for the past several years and subaru has its own quirks.

The rav4 has been #1 since the current gen entered the market:

http://www.caranddriver.com/comparisons/terrain-vs-cr-v-rav4-tiguan-mariner-outlander-forester-grand-vitara-comparison-tests

http://www.caranddriver.com/comparisons/2008-toyota-rav4-vs-honda-cr-v-nissan-rogue-ford-escape-and-five-more-compact-suvs-comparison-tests
matt33
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Posted: 2/15/2012 8:57:46 PM
Originally Posted By rfm05:
Go with a 4runner or xterra if you want body on frame and real 4wd.

+1. Toyota followed by Nissan would be my first two choices for your criteria.

I wanted a real 4wd frame based SUV for a company car. Because I was limited to domestics in a certain price range, I chose a new Jeep Liberty 4wd. Chrysler still makes big piles of garbage, but I actually really liked the Liberty. I put it through hell and back, and it never let me down. MPG's were around 18 with a moderately heavy foot.

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Posted: 2/15/2012 9:12:32 PM
[Last Edit: 2/15/2012 9:12:54 PM by 94TBlazer]
Last summer I bought a 2000 Tahoe. Real 4WD, good old 350 V8. Leather with heated seats, nice shape. Paid $5K cash. Gas mileage is better than the monthly payment, which is $0.
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Posted: 2/15/2012 10:00:39 PM
I vote 4Runner, Xterra, or and XJ. My sister has a 2001 4Runner that is still running despite her frustrating inability to maintain it ...ever. Xterras seem to be about the same. XJ's are cheap, capable, usually reliable, and cheap.
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Posted: 2/15/2012 10:08:08 PM
[Last Edit: 2/16/2012 12:01:10 AM by Warhawk]
Go drive a CRV, in comparison to the 4 cylinder RAV4, well there is no comparison.

My daughter is now driving the '07 CRV that my wife bought new. We put 130K on it and it's over 160K now, and she lives on a fairly rough dirt road up in Kansas. The total repairs have been a brake master cylinder that went out at shortly after 130K. Gas mileage has always been 25-28 mpg. And it's the AWD version.

My wife bought an Accord this time, and wishes she had gotten another CRV.
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Posted: 2/15/2012 10:45:39 PM
CR-V or a Subaru sounds perfect for your needs.
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