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  #1  
Old January 12th, 2010, 10:47 PM
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Flagg
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Small Car Advice

Hey,

Besides the D90, I have a 2003 Mini Cooper S with 94k miles on it. Just did a pricy repair on the car. It is off warranty. The car has been very good to us maintenance wise, but we are wondering what will happen down the road. My wife and I love the car. Nice not to have a car payment.

We also have two sons (3 years, and 1 year). We keep 1 car seat in the car, with the other rear seat folded down for storage. Works well - but we are wondering if/when we should go with something cheep to replace it. Get back on warranty. Have 4 doors for ease of getting the kids in and out.

I would love to get the new VW Golf 4 door diesel.........I think it is a bit too pricey (unless I get a used one).

I just knew that people on this board would have opinions of cars to look in to. We don't plan to rush into anything........so we have time to think about it.

Car requirements:
1) Preferably a small hatchback
2) 4 door (easy to get kids into)
3) Good fuel economy
4) leatherette seats (easy to clean up spilled milk)
5) good reliability rating
6) good crash test results
7) Out the door Under 20K / 15k would be better.....we are not looking for a dream car here. Just one to zip around in and work while the kids are young.......

Thoughts?

Flagg
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  #2  
Old January 13th, 2010, 06:16 AM
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Sterling Archer
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I'm surprised you want to keep the Mini with two kids. We are in the same boat. I have a 2003 Audi A4 that's paid off and has 120k miles on it, but two kids in the back seat is a tight squeeze. We are looking at some of the SUV crossovers but those seem to be in the mid-20s.
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  #3  
Old January 13th, 2010, 08:05 AM
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Bill Adams
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It may not be very sexy, but I'll plug the Hyundai Elantra. No leather option, you'll have to get seat covers.
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  #4  
Old January 13th, 2010, 08:22 AM
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Phillip
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Honda Fit or just keep the Cooper.
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  #5  
Old January 13th, 2010, 08:42 AM
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There are already some opinions kind of what I was thinking. The Mini works well enough with kids, and is not the family car. It has been very cheep to own thus far. With the low mileage we put on the car - I am sure we can get more years out of it. We just were having some cold feet.

Last 4 years - 2005-2009 - about $2400 of service / repairs on the car.

Last week: Heat was not working well. We needed a new water pump, changed the timing belt at the same time. Minor oil leak. Needed a new thermostat, and heating core. Seems to be running fine now. Total bill was around $2300.

Not bad when you consider a car payment. And much of this bill was preventative stuff that needed done anyway. I just wanted my thoughts in line, incase we start having a big problem every 6 months. I will check out the cars mentioned (I like doing the research).........

Thanks, Flagg
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  #6  
Old January 13th, 2010, 08:51 AM
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Greg
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I have heard good things about the Honda Element. Spacious, and the seats can easily be converted for lots of storage.

You can get it in all wheel drive as well, in case you want to wheel it.
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  #7  
Old January 13th, 2010, 09:18 AM
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Tony Brooks
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We loved our A3, and it's now out in diesel. Our mini that predated the A3 was a bucket of sh!t.

All that said we got rid of the A3 due to space limitations and replaced it with a land cruiser. We haven't looked back.
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