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First Car

The Right Car for Me | TrueDelta


I am looking for my first car, I have looked at the 2012 c250 which I really liked. I am also looking at the cla250, but the used inventory is hard to come across. I really like the look of both of these cars. Are these cood choices, or do you have any better suggestions? thanks!

Preferred Bodystyle(s): Coupe / Sedan

Car Needs: Family transporter / Errands about town

Primary Driver(s): New driver

Need minimum of 4 seats

Will consider both new and used cars
Maximum mileage: 35000
Maximum age: 2012 years

Maximum price: US $ 30000

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Response from mwcten

1:31 pm March 16, 2015

I'm not a fan of Mercedes because, while their overall number of repair trips doesn't seem all that high (see the data on this site) they're just so darn expensive to work on when they do develop a problem, and even when they don't. Price out prepaid maintenance on a Mercedes and you'll find that it's just about the most expensive of any car out there. You should youtube scotty kilmers short video on Mercedes.

Ultimately it depends what you're looking for. In terms of function and driving dynamics, a Mazda 6 will do basically what the CLA will do but without the nameplate and without some of the bells and whistles. And it will last longer, cost less upfront, and cost a fraction in terms of maintenance. For a luxury name, the Infiniti G35 (used) and Acura TSX are luxury cars that are actually reliable.

If you're dead set on European luxury, you can kind of pick you poison among each maker's entry level car - the BMW 320i, the Volvo S60, the Audi A3, etc. They all have little strengths and weaknesses, but in terms of their overall quality as cars and their costs of ownership, they should all be roughly comparable. Mercedes made their advertising push a year ago or so saying they had got the CLA under $30k, but everyone else isn't much over that number anyway.


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Mazda Mazda6
Infiniti G
Acura TSX

Response from mkaresh

3:19 pm March 17, 2015

Between the Mercedes, the C-Class is a far better car than the CLA. The latter doesn't have the smoothness, solidity, or premium materials I expect n a Mercedes. Owners have also been reporting more than the average number of problems with them.

The most fun to drive car in that segment is the Cadillac CTS. These haven't been selling nearly as well as Cadillac hoped, so lately they've had good deals on them.

mwcten suggests some good, lower cost alternatives. To get more specific, it'd help to know what your needs and wants are with a car.

What do you like about those you like? What do you dislike about those you dislike?

For any of these cars, you should probably also check what they will cost to insure.


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Cadillac ATS
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