Looking For Economical Vehicle

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83
Location
California
I'm hopefully going to get an economical vehicle in the next year. I know that the Focus and some others are direct injection engines. But are the Prius / Corolla / Civic also direct injection? I am probably going to purchase a brand new vehicle, and was wondering if the direct injection vehicles have been having any issues. I saw that some of the Ford engines have been having build up on the intake valves causing a need for cleaning. Is this just going to be a problem with them? Or do some of them have all the issues worked out?
 
Messages
386
Location
Finland
Toyota hybrids have port injection, never heard of any significant engine issues in them. I'm going to buy Lexus CT (with Prius powertrain) in coming months, and I've been doing some homework about those. If you have direct injection and cooled EGR on the same engine it's very hard to avoid gunk build up in the intake side.
 
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Messages
437
Location
va
From what I know about direct injection, there's still quite an issue with carbon buildup in every engine made so far by every manufacturer, even porsche... If I have to take it to the dealer for induction cleaning as often as every 15k miles, I don't see where direct injection has any benefits. If I were looking for a new vehicle, one without direct injection, with about the same features I want, would be enough to sway my decision.
 

pbm

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8,906
Location
New York
Originally Posted By: LT4 Vette
Mazda 3, Civic or Corolla is what you need to buy.
I agree with you on Mazda3 but I don't believe Honda Civic quality and reliability is what it used to be. I can't give an opinion on the new Corolla but my 2008 has been a very good car (but not perfect).
 
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14,505
Location
Top of Virginia
The Honda Civic and Toyota Corolla both use conventional multiport injected 1.8L engines. The Mazda 3 does have direct injection on both of its engines (2.0L and 2.5L).
 
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5,435
Location
KC
Ford Fiesta is not DI and a fantastic small car. It is by far the most well built compact I have found. My mother has a 2011 SEL. It is rated 38 MPG hwy but she never sees less than 43 MPGs on her trips (6spd DCT). The doors are heavy and sturdy. It is amazingly quiet, too.
 
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2,217
Location
socal
It depends on how much u want to spend on a new car. Almost all makes have an economical model. Some cost significantly more than others. Some have better reputations. Once u have a budget, only then can u decide which vehicle to purchase that is most economical. I agree w others, Ford, Honda and Toyota is not DI. I don't know of any major carbon build up issues w DI. A buddy recently purchased a VW golf tdi and he is loving the mpg, says the interior is nice and comfy, and is fun to zip around in. Good luck
 
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3,117
Location
Virginia
The new Dodge Dart does not have direct injection in their 2.0 and 2.4L versions. Pretty nice car from my experience with them so far - quiet, comfortable, nice handling and a good size trunk.
 
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1,154
Location
Richmond, VA
Take a REALLY hard look at Mazda, they leap-frogged the rest of the companies in innovation with the SkyActive engines and design technologies. If you can wait and want something small the 2 is about to get a full re-do and looks very catching. One warning though, Mazda is looking to move upmarket and has stiffer cars and suspensions than other companies, but not uncomfortably so. If you want a boat, look elsewhere. If you want cheap, look elsewhere. But if you want an astonishing value, it's really tough to beat, they're winning awards left and right.
 
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407
Location
Tampa
What nobody mentions in these conversations is real-world price. Everyone's praising the Mazda3, and it is a good car. But is it worth the extra money over a Focus? I don't believe so. You can easily get a Focus for $5k off sticker. And the deals on the '14s will probably even get sweeter as the refreshed '15s start arriving in January. Not so with a 3 (or Civic, Corolla, etc.) Also, you'll typically find many more Ford delears and Focuses to choose from in your region. For example let's say you want leather seats. Do an autotrader search for new Focuses and 3s in your region. The cheapest Focus with leather I find in my region is $15.7k. The cheapest 3? $25.8k. My '12 Focus had a problemmatic transmission (first model year). But my '14 has been flawless over 7,500 miles (accepting the normal dual clutch auto's minor quirks). I paid $20.3k for my Focus with leather, 18" alloys with Michelin Pilots, sport suspension, moonroof, MyFord Touch, and heated seats. You'll never get those features on a 3, Civic or Corolla for that price. In my opinion the Focus is the best bang for the buck in the compact segment, and the '14s appear to have acceptable reliability. I'm active on the most popular Focus forum and I have never heard of any problems related to the direct injection (e.g. intake valve deposits).
 
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18,168
Location
NH
What is the budget *and* expected vehicle life? I buy vehicles on their basis of exceeding 250kmiles as that is what I plan to do in 10 years ownership.
 
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1,797
Location
Texas
My first stop would probably be a Mazda dealership. But I would also kick the tires of each other car mentioned in this thread. If you don't mind the smaller size and a manual transmission, check out the Fiesta with the I-3 Ecoboost.
 
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7,553
Location
North America
Intended length of ownership is a factor, as is desired fuel economy....what do you need, 30+ mpg? 40+? What is your budget? Rather than restate previous suggestions, here are some fresh ones: You can get a 40+ mpg VW diesel costing low 20s, and get 45 mpg. Or save several grand for the gas version and get 31. You can spend 18k and get a Subaru Impreza and get 36 highway. Or 24k for the Legacy, same mpg. Or you can buy an Elio for $6800 and get 84mpg.
 
Messages
5,466
Location
Buckley, Wa.
If real economy is your aim here, I would strongly consider the Mitsubishi Mirage. It's been rated well by many auto reviewers and gets absolutely ASTOUNDING MPG's. You can walk off the lot with one for under $15k easily. But....that's only if you really want economy.
 

13Tacoma

Thread starter
Messages
83
Location
California
Thanks for all the responses. I will not spend more than 25,000. 40mpg highway would be great. I don't need anything fancy like leather seats or navigation. I actually am currently driving the Tacoma every day and it's a manual transmission which doesn't bother me. I love the Tacoma, but I've been doing 500 miles / week and the 22mpg is starting to wear on me. I'd say 350 of that is highway. I'm just looking for something that could go 250k / 10-12 years with no major hiccups or expensive maintenance items every 15k. I know nothing is perfect and I am all for performing maintenance myself. Things happen.... But I was just wondering what has a good track record?
 
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