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    Thread: Help me pick a car with a specific set of needs under $20k

    1. Member corrado-correr's Avatar
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      02-11-2020 05:42 PM #26
      Quote Originally Posted by kickapoo View Post
      Extended cab is too small for a useable backseat. Double cab, however, is not a bad idea and a tonneua cover/shell would hide and protect all of the relevant items. That Tacoma premium tax though is bonkers...can't believe they're still in the $20k range for almost 10 year old models...at that price range, any reason not to look at the 4Runner of similar vintage? Photos don't make the cargo area look all that large though.

      Prius and Prius V are not bad ideas - I'll need to get those sized out.
      My bad, whatever they call the big box four door. Double Cab. That RVAE34 thread has me sweating Tacomas.

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    3. Member
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      02-11-2020 05:59 PM #27
      I'm a 20k a year guy with similar sizing requirements, and have gone with a 2013 Jetta Sportwagen TDI > 2018 Tiguan. Like both of them, but at this point would prefer the Tiguan for that kind of heavy usage and the much larger back seat


    4. Member Elite_Deforce's Avatar
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      02-11-2020 09:04 PM #28
      Quote Originally Posted by kickapoo View Post
      CX-5 is no go. I've not so great luck with Mazda before in the past and don't want to go down that road again. Roof rack is not an option - just too cumbersome to deal with a few times a day when necessary. Station wagons could be the way to go.
      Mazda the manufacturer or Mazda the dealer network? Cause the Mazdas of today are completely different cars than a decade ago.
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    5. Senior Member Sporin's Avatar
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      02-11-2020 10:46 PM #29
      We love our 2o16 RAV4 Limited. Can easily find one in your price range and you know your ladder fits.

      One of the best selling, most reliable vehicles out there. Drives great.


    6. Member Vettes, Volvos and VWs's Avatar
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      02-11-2020 11:09 PM #30
      Quote Originally Posted by kickapoo View Post
      Regarding VW - there's the Jetta Sportwagen (thru 2014 mainly seeing TDI), Golf Sportwagen (TSI and TDI), and Alltrack (TSI). Most are old enough to be out of any warranty except the different TDI warranties. Does anyone have any of these handy to measure out the interior cargo space dimensions? Also - thoughts on how these would hold up with such high use-cases?
      I just measured my Alltrack. I would say the ladder is completely doable. Its 40" wheel well to wheel well and 50" wide at the back. It's is approximately 40" deep to the bottom of the seat to the hatch closing. The ladder could go diagonal as that was about 52".

      Plus you can get it in a stick and/or AWD depending on your preferences.
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      02-11-2020 11:28 PM #31
      Quote Originally Posted by VadGTI View Post
      Oh, I like that vehicle.

    8. Member dr_spock's Avatar
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      02-11-2020 11:33 PM #32
      Golf Sportwagen. Add crossbars to roof rail if bigger ladder is needed.

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      02-11-2020 11:39 PM #33
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    10. Senior Member VadGTI's Avatar
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      02-12-2020 12:11 AM #34
      Quote Originally Posted by dr_spock View Post
      Golf Sportwagen. Add crossbars to roof rail if bigger ladder is needed.
      Quote Originally Posted by ghost03 View Post
      Oh, I like that vehicle.
      Quote Originally Posted by Vettes, Volvos and VWs View Post
      I just measured my Alltrack. I would say the ladder is completely doable. Its 40" wheel well to wheel well and 50" wide at the back. It's is approximately 40" deep to the bottom of the seat to the hatch closing. The ladder could go diagonal as that was about 52".

      Plus you can get it in a stick and/or AWD depending on your preferences.
      That's that. My suggestion wins.

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    11. 02-12-2020 05:30 AM #35
      Quote Originally Posted by 2 doors View Post
      All of the people suggesting compact cars are amusing. The ladder with seats up is the hard part. CUVs are tall but short, wagons are low and long.

      Here you go, OP:



      Found on Autotrader for $19,991


      Of say F-it, get a Suburban and take any damn thing you want with you.
      Thats alot of car for 19,xxx

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      02-12-2020 08:33 AM #36
      Quote Originally Posted by Chockomon View Post
      This all day - I have the sportback version of this and it is a FANTASTIC car.

      Definitely look at the TourX as they're super cheap compared to others in the class and quite reliable
      Same, and I've championed this car because I'm very happy with mine, but I would say go with the sportback. It sounds like you have young children like I do. My daughter has a rearward facing Extend2fit car seat fully extended behind me (I'm 5'9") and I'm comfortable in the seating position. The bulky infant seat fits fine behind a comfortable front seat passenger, which we cannot do in my wife's Grand Cherokee. Trunk is large enough for two strollers too. The reason I say don't go TourX is 1. they are more expensive and 2. no AWD which increases efficiency and reduces complexity. The Regals use a haldex system, I believe, which are costly to repair when they break. The one in my old Saab broke twice in my 80k miles of ownership from new, each time costing me $900 to repair.

      My car is a base model and I bought mine brand new in 2018 for $23,000 OTD. I'm willing to bet you can find a lightly used one for less than $20k out the door with some options if you prefer, or else a leftover model brand new that you can haggle down awfully close to $20k.

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      02-12-2020 01:54 PM #37
      Quote Originally Posted by Vettes, Volvos and VWs View Post
      I just measured my Alltrack. I would say the ladder is completely doable. Its 40" wheel well to wheel well and 50" wide at the back. It's is approximately 40" deep to the bottom of the seat to the hatch closing. The ladder could go diagonal as that was about 52".

      Plus you can get it in a stick and/or AWD depending on your preferences.
      Ah, the diagonal is no go as it would take up too much space. The 50" at the back - does it conflict with any cubbies or storage areas? What I was shocked about in the RAV4 is that I got a 44" width to fit the ladders just at the wheelwells at the back by the seats which opened up so much space.

    14. Senior Member VadGTI's Avatar
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      02-12-2020 03:03 PM #38
      Quote Originally Posted by qwikz28 View Post
      Same, and I've championed this car because I'm very happy with mine, but I would say go with the sportback. It sounds like you have young children like I do. My daughter has a rearward facing Extend2fit car seat fully extended behind me (I'm 5'9") and I'm comfortable in the seating position. The bulky infant seat fits fine behind a comfortable front seat passenger, which we cannot do in my wife's Grand Cherokee. Trunk is large enough for two strollers too. The reason I say don't go TourX is 1. they are more expensive and 2. no AWD which increases efficiency and reduces complexity. The Regals use a haldex system, I believe, which are costly to repair when they break. The one in my old Saab broke twice in my 80k miles of ownership from new, each time costing me $900 to repair.

      My car is a base model and I bought mine brand new in 2018 for $23,000 OTD. I'm willing to bet you can find a lightly used one for less than $20k out the door with some options if you prefer, or else a leftover model brand new that you can haggle down awfully close to $20k.

      Counterargument: Sexy wagon.



      But seriously, I'd be shocked if the stuff you need to fit did not fit into a Golf Sportwagen.





      Last edited by VadGTI; 02-12-2020 at 03:05 PM.
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      02-12-2020 03:30 PM #39
      Quote Originally Posted by VadGTI View Post
      But seriously, I'd be shocked if the stuff you need to fit did not fit into a Golf Sportwagen.
      I'll drop into Neftin VW tonight on the way home from a site visit and will test fit my gear. Will report tonight!

    16. Member Chockomon's Avatar
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      02-12-2020 03:37 PM #40
      Quote Originally Posted by VadGTI View Post
      Counterargument: Sexy wagon.



      But seriously, I'd be shocked if the stuff you need to fit did not fit into a Golf Sportwagen.





      Don't get me wrong, GSW is a fantastic car and as a big VW guy, I do love them. The Regal definitely has a lot more interior space, especially rear seat room. I wouldn't be too concerned with the AWD system either, I have it on my Sportback and its definitely fantastic. Plus, the comfort level of the TourX will be much higher than that of the GSW.

      On the other end, fuel economy is better in the sportwagen due to the smaller engine and FWD. But I don't think you can beat the practicality with the price of the TourX. If you don't get a 2018/2019 GSW, your warranty will be better on the Regal (4yr/60k miles B2B vs 3/36 miles).
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      02-13-2020 03:31 AM #41
      Dropped by a local VW store and took a look at the Golf Sportwagen. It was too late in the evening to test drive as I arrived about 10 mins to closing but spoke to the saleperson over the phone and he had the car open and ready for me to explore.

      My multi-purpose ladder fits! Albeit towards the rear of the hatch and not up against the seat backs as it did in the RAV4 but regardless, it fits well and has enough room for my work bags behind.





      For reference, see the Volt from earlier this week without the Pelican cases:


    18. Member Stevo12's Avatar
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      02-13-2020 07:21 AM #42
      If you’re looking for something with some value at the end of your tenure with ~100k just ask yourself what normal non-enthusiast people would go for with that kind of mileage (spoiler: it’s not VW)

      I get it, a GSW/Alltrack is mighty enticing and I appreciated the packaging in my Mk6 JSW, but it wasn’t worth sh*t a few years later when I was done with it, and it was pre-Dieselgate too.

      While my DD fleet looks like enthusiast hell right now, I can get some use out of these vehicles and they’d still be worth something at the end of the day. Granted I think they’re overvalued but it doesn’t matter what I think they’re worth. It matters what someone else will pay. I suppose if you’re going manual it’s all moot anyway - no one will pay for those

      How is the rear seat space in the GSW? We poked around VW when looking for a bigger car to accommodate the rear facing seat and thought the GSW looked too tight (didn’t test fit) whereas the Tig was much better in that department.

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      02-13-2020 08:39 AM #43
      I know Mazda wasn't your preference, but I took a quick measurement on our 2010 Mazda5 last night.

      The upright seating position makes for a ton of space for child seats (we have three, including twins that were in rear facing seats in this car). With the third row folded, there's about 40" to the rear gate, and since the second row is on rails, you can slide one up just a bit if needed to make more space without really hindering the child seat capabilities.

      I paid $16,500 brand-new 10 years ago, so surely the nicest low-mile newer example in the world would be a low-teens price.
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      02-14-2020 03:35 AM #44
      Quote Originally Posted by Stevo12 View Post
      If you’re looking for something with some value at the end of your tenure with ~100k just ask yourself what normal non-enthusiast people would go for with that kind of mileage (spoiler: it’s not VW)

      I get it, a GSW/Alltrack is mighty enticing and I appreciated the packaging in my Mk6 JSW, but it wasn’t worth sh*t a few years later when I was done with it, and it was pre-Dieselgate too.

      While my DD fleet looks like enthusiast hell right now, I can get some use out of these vehicles and they’d still be worth something at the end of the day. Granted I think they’re overvalued but it doesn’t matter what I think they’re worth. It matters what someone else will pay. I suppose if you’re going manual it’s all moot anyway - no one will pay for those

      How is the rear seat space in the GSW? We poked around VW when looking for a bigger car to accommodate the rear facing seat and thought the GSW looked too tight (didn’t test fit) whereas the Tig was much better in that department.
      Yeah, I completely get where you're coming from. I didn't exhibit issues spacewise in the backseat but you're right, long-term residual value at my use level that the regular VWs may just have non-existant value.

      Quote Originally Posted by ArmenB View Post
      I know Mazda wasn't your preference, but I took a quick measurement on our 2010 Mazda5 last night.

      The upright seating position makes for a ton of space for child seats (we have three, including twins that were in rear facing seats in this car). With the third row folded, there's about 40" to the rear gate, and since the second row is on rails, you can slide one up just a bit if needed to make more space without really hindering the child seat capabilities.

      I paid $16,500 brand-new 10 years ago, so surely the nicest low-mile newer example in the world would be a low-teens price.
      Haven't thought much about Mazda to be honest. I had multiple meh experiences with the local dealer when I had a Mazda and for what it's worth, that store had closed down. I've had a rental 5 at one point and was pleasantly surprised with the package of it so it may be worth a look. How's the long-term reliability and upkeep on these?

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      02-14-2020 08:27 AM #45
      Quote Originally Posted by kickapoo View Post
      Haven't thought much about Mazda to be honest. I had multiple meh experiences with the local dealer when I had a Mazda and for what it's worth, that store had closed down. I've had a rental 5 at one point and was pleasantly surprised with the package of it so it may be worth a look. How's the long-term reliability and upkeep on these?
      We've had this one 10 years but have only put 61k miles on it. It's needed nothing but basic maintenance. IMO the 2008 and later Mazda5 is kind of a "sweet spot" in terms of a mechanically and electrically simple but modern car - there's just very little complicated stuff to go wrong. No skyactiv, no turbos, no CVT or DSG, no complicated DI systems, it's just a simple DOHC Duratec/MZR 4-cylinder that is very robust and easy to do basic maintenance on, with a perfectly serviceable 5-speed automatic (or you could even get a manual trans in the Mazda5 if you really look hard).

      The packaging efficiency is really tremendous, and it actually handles pretty well around town. The downside is that it's not exactly luxurious and it's not my favorite car for a cross-country road trip (though I've done it several times). The road noise is a little high and the seats aren't super-comfortable for me if it's a 10-hours-a-day thing. Rust is probably the main killer of these in salt climates, but they aren't as bad as the early-mid 2000's Mazda products. We've been able to keep the body totally rust-free with minimal care and I've kept the underside pretty decent with Fluid Film and a little rustoleum touchup on the chassis a few years ago.
      Quote Originally Posted by sosumi on the B6 S4 V8
      It sounds like a giant shotgun and then like a bunch of ground up Yugo's in a cement mixer followed by weeks of silence interspersed by wails from the owner.

    22. Senior Member Sporin's Avatar
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      02-14-2020 09:07 AM #46
      We've owned a few Mazdas over the years, going all the way back the 626 in the mid-90s. We never had a single major issue with any of them. Even our Protege5 was rust-free after 100k hard Vermont miles—I should have kept that one, great little car.

      Oddly enough, my least favorite Mazda was the one that TCL clamored for (but not many bought) the V6, 5spd manual, Mazda6 wagon. Just an all-around underwhelming car that I was very happy to have totaled in a very minor accident (with no injuries).

      I'd happily own another Mazda if we had a local dealer again. We test drove a last-gen Mazda3 hatch last year and if we didn't need tall-family rear seat space we might have bought one as the deals were great and we loved the car itself.

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      02-14-2020 10:08 AM #47
      My wife absolutely hammers our 2012 Mazda 5 and it just keeps taking it like a champ. That being said, they have been out of production since 2015 and are all pretty old now (although probably still reliable). My choice would be either a Sportwagen or Regal TourX.

    24. Member Stevo12's Avatar
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      02-14-2020 11:02 AM #48
      Quote Originally Posted by kickapoo View Post
      Haven't thought much about Mazda to be honest. I had multiple meh experiences with the local dealer when I had a Mazda and for what it's worth, that store had closed down. I've had a rental 5 at one point and was pleasantly surprised with the package of it so it may be worth a look. How's the long-term reliability and upkeep on these?
      We owned a manual SkyActiv Mazda 3 from new in 2013 until last year when we sold it because it was too small for our growing family.

      Reliability wise it never put a foot wrong in 6 years/125k miles. I did most of the oil changes and tire rotations myself - cost about $30 with a 5-qt jug of 0W-20 (usually Castrol Edge) from Amazon and a OE Mazda filter. It was also 4.5 qts in, 4.5 qts out, always.

      There was 1 big service at 75k where I did a drain/fill on the trans and new spark plugs. I also replaced the belts at one point, and went thru 1 set of tires and brakes (originals lasted till 115k).

      The 2013 was a perfectly serviceable car, if a bit basic. The newer ones are much improved on the fit/finish, but the mechanicals have stayed the same. Chassis aren’t athletic as ze Germans, but decent for what they are (basic). Contrary to TCL belief ours didn’t hold a ton of value - bought for $18k, sold it for $5300 after 6 years/125k. Everything working perfectly, no rust, good tires/brakes, everything. The name just doesn’t carry the same weight as Toyota/Honda, or even Subaru in these parts. I see other 2008 Outbacks like the one that replaced our Mazda, for the same $5k as we sold our Mazda for.

      Again, in my mind a reliable 2013 Mazda >>> 2008 Outback, but the market doesn’t agree.

      They are light on passenger and cargo space, which is why we got rid of our 3 hatch. It did have a folding seat if that works for you. Having owned Mazdas for 10 years I’m ready for something new but they always treated me right for the cheap runabouts they are.
      Last edited by Stevo12; 02-14-2020 at 11:05 AM.

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      02-14-2020 05:42 PM #49
      I sincerely don't understand why Subaru resale is so high. Even for the WRX.
      Quote Originally Posted by Sonderwunsch View Post
      People have been complaining about modern BMWs lacking steering feel so they are adding torque steer.
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      I find it ironic that long time Euro brand fans would assume long term reliability issues would destroy any love of a unique product.

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      02-15-2020 12:01 PM #50
      I went out and measured my 2018 GLI and it shows 42 in. Maybe that opens some possibilities for OP.

      Trunk 1 by [url=https://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected]/]

      So I went back and re-red the OP post and the MK6 Jetta obviously is not a hatch but the trunk is huge and meets all other req. So I will leave it here in case he is interested.
      Last edited by BGTI1; 02-15-2020 at 12:05 PM. Reason: Re-read the OP post

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