We are 106,000+ car owners sharing real-world car information.

Join Us

Sporty dog mom who road trips

The Right Car for Me | TrueDelta

kmacd1741

I lost my diesel A3 because of the mileage cheating ,swithched to a mini clubman--hate it--too small too gadget-y ..looking for something that will fit 2 50lb dogs in the back but is still well designed but is reliable and will last me for 5-10 years. Am i crazy? would rather stay with a wagon than an suv...but have driven suv in the past...looked at the allroad (hard to find used with low miles), volvo v60 (are they reliable???), subaru outback ( seats are not very comfortable) Any help would be greatly appreciated

Priorities: Reliability & durability / Interior styling / Cargo capacity

Need minimum of 4 seats

Will consider both new and used cars
Maximum mileage: 30000
Maximum age: 4 years

Maximum price: US $ 29000

« Return to results

Sign in or join TrueDelta to post your own thoughts.

Sort responses by likes

Response from LectroFuel

8:37 pm August 20, 2018

You have a few choices. Subaru Outback, VW Golf Sportwagon, Buick Regal TourX, Kia Soul, the list goes on. The Volvo and Audi have potential problems that make them not worth considering like most German cars, especially with $29k.

I would suggest Subaru Outback first. Make sure you mess with the seat including the power lumbar before you forget about the Outback. It does everything most people want very well.

The VW wagon is sportier and more firm. Reliability won't be as good as the Subaru or Buick.

The Buick is comfort-oriented like the Subaru. The car is overpriced in my opinion, but who knows what GM's discounts have in store?

The Kia Soul is the budget alternative to the wagons. It will hold a lot of stuff with the backseats down. You will be able to get more features for the money with the Soul instead of the other wagons. It is not as comfortable as the wagons, but is reliable like the Subaru and Buick. Your dogs might not be as comfortable either since it is small in the trunk.

If you want to look at SUVs, the Honda CR-V and Mazda CX-5 are the best in the segment. The upcoming 2019 Forester will probably be good, too.

1

Link to this reponse

Subaru Outback
Honda CR-V
Mazda CX-5

Response from NormT

9:26 pm August 20, 2018

For about $22,000-26000 I really like the Buick Regal sportback and Regal tourx wagon. The offer upscale German cars offer good driving manners with 4 year 50000 mile warranty. Sportback offers double the trunk space of a normal sedan like the Honda Accord. Either car will offer a more mature driving experince with gimicks.
2018 Buick Regal Sportback Preferred For Sale In Medina | Cars.com

2018 Buick Regal Sportback Preferred For Sale In Medina | Cars.com

New 2018 Buick Regal Sportback Preferred for sale at Medina Automall in Medina, OH for $20,990. View now on Cars.com.
2018 Buick Regal TourX Preferred For Sale In Saginaw | Cars.com

2018 Buick Regal TourX Preferred For Sale In Saginaw | Cars.com

New 2018 Buick Regal TourX Preferred for sale at Garber Buick in Saginaw, MI for $26,094. View now on Cars.com.

0

Link to this reponse

Buick Regal

Response from AcuraT

11:13 pm August 20, 2018

I agree completely with Lectofuel but I am being mindful of the price you listed as you max - $29,000

While the TourX is not a bad option, there are only four used ones for sale in the USA right now according to TrueCar.com, and only one in California is at your price point. Discounting is not really around on it right now (I should know, I tried to buy one just a couple of months ago and there are so few on the dealer lots - no discounting was available, few are still available in the USA right now as the model just launched this year. There are some reports of $1000 off but that is about it right now):

https://www.truecar.com/used-cars-for-sale/listing/W04GU8SX0J1064346/2018-buick-regal-tourx/

Since it is a brand new model first year glitches may happen but overall it is probably pretty solid as GM's reliablity has gone up over the years since they got focused on improving it since the early 2000s. A base model with no options and a $1000 discount will get you down to about $29,000 for a new one off the lot (white as an exterior color, cloth seats, etc.).

You mentioned you don't like the seats in the Subaru Outback. Some people don't like them. However, that car will comfortably be available used in your price point and it does everything else well. Note you have to watch the oil level as Subaru's burn oil about at a 10% rate of ownership. You can run them like that (I do with my own) but you just have to watch the oil levels in case it happens to you eventually. Here is a nicely loaded four cylinder near me that is just under $26,000 and one year old.

https://www.truecar.com/used-cars-for-sale/listing/4S4BSACCXJ3249089/2018-subaru-outback/

The VW mentioned by Lectrofuel is not as reliable but is dirt cheap because of dieselgate right now and they have sales troubles. You owned an Audi and VW is the parent company so you sort of know what you would be getting yourself into buying one of these. I can get a one year old VW Golf Sportwagon in my area for just over $18,000 for a 2017 model year which is very cheap for such a new VW:

https://www.truecar.com/used-cars-for-sale/listing/3VWC17AU6HM503395/2017-volkswagen-golf-sportwagen/

Kia Soul I will go along with but I don't think you will like it for the reason given - that trunk is really too small. Give it a try however since it is realiable and is cheap. Here is a Kia Soul near me for less than $13,000 and it is a 2017:

https://www.truecar.com/used-cars-for-sale/listing/KNDJP3A56J7510552/2018-kia-soul/

I would stay away from the other options for the reasons given. Best of luck.

1

Link to this reponse

Response from danlisahall

12:40 am August 21, 2018

Great advice from all. I'won't add any other cars but share my perspective.

All the below will actually have more dog space than your A3 but won't have quite as nice an interior or MPG. You don't mention AWD so two of the below are FWD & two are AWD. I've listed them in my order of preference.

Outback - Like Lectrofuel I think this is your best bet - 2015 or newer. I've owned two, no problems for mine (but owned only 5 yrs & <60,000 miles). Look at models with 6 way power driver's seat. Try fiddling with seat & steering wheel adjustments to see if you can make it work for you. If you live near a large city you can probably rent one from Turo or rental car agency for 2-3 days if necessary. If you present yourself well & promise to keep the dogs out, some dealers will let you have one over night - especially a used one. Lots of safety features not available on other cars in this price range. You could buy a new 2018 in your price range

Golf Sportwagon: Best driver & fuel economy.Interior is marginally best of bunch also - similar to your A3. OB & Soul interiors are very nice as well, Buick is not bad but sort of bland in comparison. Golf's cargo space & comfort is between OB & Soul. Good safety features also. Reliablity can be iffy, some owners have almost no problems but that is the exception rather than the rule. But at $20K, you could take the buy now & pay later (if necessary) approach. I took the chance and have a 2016 Golf.

Kia Soul: I probably got 4,000 seat miles on these little gems as a rental unit. It is a great little car, most reliable of all mentioned and seats are quite comfortable for most. Yes, cargo space is small with back seats up. BUT if it is just you and your dogs & you don't mind dog breath, you could lower the rear seats. Then the cargo area becomes quite cavernous. Top of the line models also have good interiors & safety features.

Buick TourX:
. I drove one just to compare it to the OB. As good as OB in many regards, with more engine oomph - at the penalty of the lowest MPG of the bunch. Yet a reasonable alternative for the person who wants lots of cargo space & doesn't need high ground clearance. It's cargo area is expansive with slightly more space than the OB, even with back seats up. But it is configured differently so it is wider & longer but lower than the OB (not as low as your A3). So if your dogs are not too longlegged / tall it could be a good option for you. However the price could be a big hurdle; especially if you want the best safety features. Only the $42K model offers all the wonderful safety features you will find on OB & Soul for a whole lot less dough. It is a large car, even when compared to the OB. New model reliablity remains to be determined. If you have a tight garage, you might want to check it for fit before you commit! One can't help but wonder why Buick dealers are selling them at such dramatic discounts for a new model???

Civic CR-V is another worthy consideration. I don't have any personal experience with them but they are getting rave reviews by the auto press. My family & I have had a number of earlier Honda Civics & Del Sols which were all bullet proof even over 200K, but today's cars are so much more complex than those from 1985 to 2000 era the relablity and reliablity of most manufactures has suffered as a result.

Here are some great comparative reviews of OB, TourX and Golf Sportwagon:
https://www.motortrend.com/cars/buick/regal/2018/2018-buick-regal-tourx-vs-2018-subaru-outback-3-6r-vs-2018-volkswagen-golf-alltrack/ https://www.usatoday.com/story/money/cars/2018/06/01/sport-wagons-edmunds-subaru-outback-buick-regal-tourx/654726002/ https://www.coloradoavidgolfer.com/face-off-2018-buick-regal-tourx-essence-vs-2018-subaru-outback-3-6r/ In a nutshell I'd say any one of these will be as good or better ride than your A3.
I suggest you drive 'em all before signing any dotted lines. It would be great to hear you're feedback on each.


1

Link to this reponse

Kia Soul

Response from kmacd1741

11:10 am August 21, 2018

I really appreciate all this advice and just wondering why no one has recommended a used Audi Allroad ?? Are they too much trouble going forward?? I will go give the Subaru a second look as I am trying to get a car where I can fit the dogs in the cargo space on road trips. Thanks.

2

Link to this reponse

Response from NormT

1:56 pm August 21, 2018

I try to recommend the newest vehicle and also one with a warranty, especially when buying used. Not all vehicles are inexpensive to fix or repair and some require require vavletrain to be checked, rear differential fluid flush every 15,000 miles(Honda), or timing belt and water pumps change intervals.

The older Allroad was A6 based with twin turbo v6 that required the front of the car to be removed for timing belt and water pump. The new A4 based Allroad uses a 2.0T which should be plenty for most as Audi has one of the strongest 2.0T engines. Both are right at $29,000 and go much higher as the $30,000 versions are scattered around the country base on a search of cars dot com or autotrader.

The size of the car and the way it drives, used condition, and engine choice play a big part in narrowing your decision.

2

Link to this reponse

Response from LectroFuel

6:10 pm August 21, 2018

Audi is German. German (European) cars are always more of a pain to fix. Labor, parts, and general maintenance are going to be more expensive unless you know how to DIY. They usually break more often than brands' cars from other countries, so that makes it even worse. If you want another opinion, talk to your mechanic and he will say the same thing. German cars are notorious for this, but people still buy them because you get the German solidity and badge. It depends on if you value reliability more than having a badge and top-notch driving dynamics.

The Outback is a more reliable alternative to the Audi. The Outback obviously isn't a luxury car, but it does have a soft, squishy, and quiet ride.

I forgot to mention that VW has the 6 year/72k mile bumper to bumper warranty on their 2018 cars. That might make you forget about VW's inferior reliability unless you keep it for 10 years. I wouldn't recommend keeping a VW for 10 years unless you have good luck.

That listing AcuraT pulled up was rear ended. At 30k miles, it had the water pump, drive belt, fuel rail, and fuel injectors replaced. That and the accident it was in may be why it is so cheap. There's an example of a German car needing repairs early in its life.

2

Link to this reponse

Response from kmacd1741

3:10 pm August 22, 2018

Thank you so much for all your expertise and great knowledge --so i have one more question any option on any of the Volvo wagons?? I really like the look of the newer 2016/17 wagons or xc. I have had 2 volvos in my time one i drove into the ground 260,000 and the other s80 i think i could not wait to get rid of ..when ford had them i think...any thoughts on this?? thanks

1

Link to this reponse

Response from LectroFuel

10:43 pm August 22, 2018

Volvo is now owned by a Chinese company and they are making much improved cars since just 1-2 years ago. Reliability is not yet known for most of their new cars (XC90 is not good), but the overall feel of the cars is much better. I wouldn't recommend a Volvo from the old designs because of the expensive repair costs and there are other cars out there that feel more modern and updated. If you test drive one, like it enough, and don't care much about repairs, go for it. The V60 does not have much cargo space since it is a smaller wagon.

Since reliability was your number one priority, look at a used 2010 or newer Lexus RX350. Those are comfortable and super reliable, able to last 250k miles. I don't think it has as much space as a wagon, but if you put down the back seats you'll probably have more than enough space for your dogs.

A minivan would be the most comfortable by far for your dogs, but I'm not sure if you want to be seen in one. Sienna and Odyssey are best at that. Minivans are just larger wagons with sliding doors. They are more practical than SUVs. The only one with AWD is the Toyota Sienna.

1

Link to this reponse

Response from NormT

9:06 am August 23, 2018

Skip the Mazda CX-5 as it is not fuel efficient nor is it fun accelerating.

Edmund's longterm notes on the CX-5:

"But I have a theory that since several of us are already disappointed in the CX-5's somewhat toothless acceleration and general non-zoominess, we're all furiously plastering the accelerator to the floor in an attempt to coerce any life out of this powertrain. That's not going to help our fuel economy.... Average lifetime mpg: 22"

As surveyed here and other places thr current CR-V has one of the highest repair rates and lowest quality rating. For almost $30K Honda is charging the Buick Envision ranks higher in initial quality according to J. D. Power.

0

Link to this reponse

Response from AcuraT

1:29 pm August 23, 2018

Thank you Lectrofuel for figuring out the background to that car - did not research the VIN just noted it was in the price range - now I know why.

Volvo is owned by Geeley but all the engineering and manufacturing is from Sweden still except for the S60 Inscription which is made in China. Any cars not redesigned since the purchase a couple of years ago and built since then are fully Swedish. However, long term reliablity of the new models is unknown - but they should not change too much from that past as the quality control and construction is the same as before.

Right now Consumer Reports has two years of reliablity on the new V60. First year of the redesign was typical Volvo - not so reliable in 2015. In Car electronics problems, power equipment problems, and minor engine problems were a common theme. In 2016 there really are no problems to mention except some squeaks and rattles (Body hardware scored average, everything else after two years is trouble free). There were not enough people who reported on the 2017 to get an evaluation

Just to check, I looked at an older model - the XC70/V70 to see how Volvos hold up over the longer term historically. This model was redesigned in 2008 and they have ratings up to 2010. In 2008 it is average reliablity (better than many, not as good as Toyota, Honda in 2008 overall, and most of Subaru and Hyunadai/Kia and some of GM and Ford). It was average in almost every catagory they track which is highly unusual - usually a car in Consumer Reports scores badly in a few areas and does well in others, this car had problems everywhere but only in an average percentage of cars. In 2009 it is above average in reliability, with below average relaiblity with the fuel pump and squeaks and rattles. In 2010 it was average again with the drive system below average (how well it shifts but the transmission works, as the minor transmission issues was marked down from perfect to just above average), creaks and rattles below average, climate control below average, suspension below average, and in car electronics below average.


So it seems as the Volvos age they are hit and miss depending on the model year. They are not cheap to fix or maintain and they are not as good in reliablity as the Toyotas and Hondas mentioned (if you are willing to buy an SUV but it doesn't seem you want that), Subaru mentioned, and probably the Buick TourX since in the past GM's Opel division has built good cars out of the gate (but a gamble as it is in its first year which I don't necessarily recommend doing). If you don't like any of those options at this point and you definately want a station wagon, your best bet after the above is the Volvo. It appears it may last you 10 years but there is no guarantee as the brand has been hit and miss for awhile now.

2

Link to this reponse

Response from LectroFuel

2:53 pm August 23, 2018

Response from danlisahall

3:41 pm August 23, 2018

Kmacd: Looks like you are experiencing size and price creep! I really appreciate you engagement and feedback. You now have wagon load of good opinions and suggestions. The problem is options, too many options! And there are no perfect cars! I didn't mention Allroad earlier as I thought it would be your of your price range. I have a hiking buddy & former Audi car salesman who drives a 2015 Allroad 20.T w 66K miles. He has had three recalls & one no warranty problem with failed ignition coils (a common issue trthat often occured in VW/Audi 1.8 & 2.0 turbos between 2012 - 2015, usually within the 1st 12K). Otherwise it has been solid for him. About 70% of his miles are long trip highway miles. He loves his car as it has enought room for him, is very comfortable, handles well, gets 30+ mpg on trips. He thinks an OB is equal for your needs, but just a notch below Audi in all regards except that is generally more reliable. Wagons are Volvo's specialty and they are lovely to look at. My 1st two cars were Volvo 122 & 145 wagons. Back then they led the pack for reliability & safety. However for the past 20 + years they sadly are no longer leaders in either category. The OB owner's forum has many previous Volvo owners who share their tales of Volvo woe before they got OBs. I think you need to decide if you really want to jump the shark and move up to a relatively large vehicle or do you want something relatively compact and fuel efficient similar to you're A3? Also, do you want/need AWD? If you want the most reliable, larger model w AWD a Lexus RX or Toyota Highlander would be your best bet. Toyota is also pretty free of "gadgets". Outback would be next on my list & you could get a new one in your price range (yes, I'm an OB fanman!).

If large but no AWD, the BuicktourX may be your best bet if you can find it in your price range and are willing to take a chance on a new model. I don't recall the exact detail, but they have a longer initial warranty than most new cars which may come in handy. If you want something more compact, I suggest the VW Golf Sportwagon. It will be a lot like your A3. It will get the best mileage of previously mentioned rigs, handle well, and accommodate your dogs adequately in the cargo area. As someone mentioned earlier, VW has the longest drivetrain warranty in the business other than Hyundai / Kia. I think it is 6 yrs / 72K. That brings up yet another option (hate to do that to you!) also somewhat similar to you're A3. The Kia Niro Hybrid. It is a touch larger overall than the Sportwagon (not sure how cargo area compares) and gets over 50mpg. It is getting excellent reviews from the auto press & rave reviews from actual owners on the Car Connection & Edmunds. The only common complaint (although quite rare) is that its dual clutch transmission is sometimes a bit jerky when driving very slowly such as in a parking lot or bumper to bumper traffic. Of course it has the Kia 10yr/100K warranty. Worth a look IMNSHO.https://cars.usnews.com/cars-trucks/kia/niro https://www.edmunds.com/kia/niro/2017/review/?utm_medium=sem&utm_source=google&utm_account=main_search&utm_campaign=dsa_new_model_tier_1&utm_adgroup=new_model&utm_term=dsa_new_model&utm_content=page-feed&utm_device=c&utm_matchtype=b&utm_targetid=aud-300901608948:dsac-425695699616&gclid=EAIaIQobChMI68_QzvSD3QIVCsRkCh3_fAfmEAAYASAAEgLpWfD_BwE Click on the "what consumer's say" for owner reviews Here is an excellent article of a VW Diesel Sportwagen owner who traded his for the Niro: http://www.slate.com/articles/health_and_science/science/2017/04/my_quest_to_find_a_fuel_efficient_car.html

With a little wheelin' n dealin' & opting for anything other than the top o the line model, you should be able to get any of the above except for the Toyota & Lexus New within your price range!

In reality, any of these should be reliable for the 1st 5 yrs. It is the 10 year mark that gets iffy.

Wow, you have a lot of options & potential test drives ahead of you, I hope you find it fun!

1

Link to this reponse

Kia Niro

Response from mkaresh

6:12 pm August 23, 2018

Lectrofuel,

TrueDelta is not technically a non-profit. We do not accept ads directly from manufacturers or dealers and do not provide endorsements.

I do not believe that the results of either CR or JD Power are actively biased in favor of any particular manufacturer.

I do think that the way CR words its questions provides a pathway for their editorial and other content to indirectly bias their reliability survey results. If people expect a car to be reliable based on what they read in CR they might be less likely to report a problem because they might consider it a fluke and thus not serious enough to warrant reporting. Their results also reflect any bias owners have from other sources. This was especially helped Tesla.

JD Power structures its ratings so that no car will look terrible--the lowest score they give is a two. No ones. Their information has other serious issues, but none specific to a particular manufacturer.

2

Link to this reponse

Response from kmacd1741

6:29 pm August 23, 2018

Guess I should have said i really want a wagon our other family car is a toyota landcruiser so we hve the offroad experience covered. We dont live in a snowy area but do drive to the snow a couple of times a year so AWD is handy but not necessary. I went by the subaru dealer yesterday but no-one seemed to have time to talk -i guess those cars sell themselves...I so much appreciate all the advice and insights...i will continue.

3

Link to this reponse

Response from NormT

10:56 pm August 23, 2018

I was curious why the Honda HR-V got a 2 out of 5 when the Chevy Trax got much higher. That means the Honda HR-V could have gotten a 1 or less?

0

Link to this reponse

Response from AcuraT

11:18 pm August 23, 2018

I pretty much stayed away from SUVs in most of the posts above. There are not many station wagons on the market and that is why many are talking about SUVs on this board. Worse, there are not many reliable station wagons on the market. Pretty much all viable options were covered above by everyone - including the not viable ones if you want a reliable one.

Subaru Outback, VW Golf Sportwagon, Buick Regal TourX, Kia Soul, Volvo V60, Audi Allroad, Ford CMAX Hybrid, Volvo V90 - that is pretty much every model on the market at this time.

Audi is out from a sheer reliablity aspect. Stay far away from that option.
Volvo is better, but still very risky because the models are pretty new and reliablity starting out has not been great (but it does seem to prove over time historically).

Above that is the VW Golf Sportwagon. As Lectrofuel does point out, for six years you get a warranty. The problem is you want to keep it for ten years, and that is just luck if you make it that far with that.

The Ford CMAX Hybrid has not been mentioned yet - it is an okay car. First year made was 2013 so it has not been out long. First two years overall reliablity is average by Consumer Reports, above average after that. In Car electronics and power equipment are problems but otherwise they are fairly solid cars. The first year has some driveablity issues and some creaks and rattles in additon, but that is about it. Will it last a decade? Hard to tell. Ford's hybrid technology uses some Toyota copyrights (they paid Toyota for them) so they share some hybrid technology with the Prius. I put it here as more reliable than the cars listed above as I believe they probably will be mostly okay for a longer life. It maybe too small like the Kia Soul, however.

About at the same level of reliabity as the Ford I put the GM product here - the TourX. First year production means more issues usually for a GM product, but sometimes they get it right (the Bolt was pretty reliable its first year, as was the Malibu when it was redesigned). However, sometimes they get it very wrong (Cadillac ATS great example of that). Buick is their best division because the cars are sourced from countries that use six sigma better than the USA (Regal - Opel, Encore - South Korea, Cascada - Opel). However the LaCrosse and Enclave both sourced from the USA are less reliable which they do fix eventually after launch. I am going off of the Regal's development location giving it a better chance of initial reliablity - but not perfect.

The Kia Soul and Subaru Outback are probably the most reliable offerings on the market right now in the wagon marketplace, both better than the two US offerings for the reasons given. However the Kia maybe too small, and you have mentioned problems getting into a Subaru for a test drive. If neither are on option, look at the two American brand and the VW before considering Volvo (at least I would if I were you).

You probably don't want to hear this, but getting a good, reliable wagon for the long term right now is just not that easy. I don't believe I missed any wagon in the marketplace with this list. I was just in the marketplace for a new car when a tree fell on my 12 year old Saab made by GM which had 172,000 on it so I looked at some of these wagons very recently. I went with an SUV in the end when I could get $13,000 off the MSRP due to massive discounts making it a great deal back in April.

Best of luck in this hard decision, test drives are going to be important in this case since the reliabity after the last two mentioned here is going to be more hit and miss.

1

Link to this reponse

Response from danlisahall

12:52 am August 24, 2018

Kmacd:Thanks for the additional input regarding your other rig, very helpful.

Sheesh. I said the Buick TourX wasn't AWD. That's wrong, it is AWD.

I think the last 3 paragraphs of AcuraT's are spot on. It's tough to be a wagon lover & is want high, long term reliablity in the North American Market! For that reason I hope the Buick TourX is a huge success in sales and reliablity. Speaking as a retired Veterinarian and one with quite a few miles in Soul,, my only quibble with AcuraT is that I don't think youar two 50 lb dogs are gonna fit in the Soul' hatch space with the back seats up -- at least not comfortably for a road trip.

Given your seemingly good experience with the A3 hatch (discontinued in after 2016 - a loss) If I were in your shoes, I go for the Golf Sportwagon SE model. https://cars.usnews.com/cars-trucks/volkswagen/golf-sportwagenIt ticks off all your boxes including "sporty dog mom".except it leaves a question mark after reliablity. But you would have a 6 year, 72K warranty.

Disclosure: I have a 2015 Outback with aftermarket rear sway bar and upgraded tires. It a great, comfortable, highway car, reasonable for a tall wagon on the curves. It has 31,00 miles & did have a minor gasket leak which was corrected under warranty.

I also have a 2016 VW Golf TSI Wolfsberg 4 dr hatch with 11.5K. It is not as comfortable as the OB (duh!) but non-the less very comfortable -- especially for a smaller car. Driving dynamics are exceptional for a non "performance" car. It gets 25-28 mpg city & 35-38 at 70 on the highway. All Golfs after 2015 ride on the new chassis and extensively re-engineered 1.8T - both are stellar. The 6 spd transmission works great and is also deemed very reliable. VW's weak traditional weak areas are trim (some sun roof issues & welds) and electronics. I did have a sticky fuel door which was replaced under warranty.

Car & driver put 40K free on a 2015 Golf TSi (same drivetrain as the Sportwagen) - most likely those were not easy miles either. Several other review sites had long term GTIs, none had any issues for the year that they drove the cars.
https://www.caranddriver.com/reviews/2015-volkswagen-golf-18t-tsi-automatic-long-term-test-wrap-up-review CD's had only two complaints after 40K. One was the dated touchscreen interface. VW upgraded that in 2016 & it is clear as a bell works perfectly including the Apple CarPlay. They also grumbled about the tranny a bit. Either theirs was a exception or VW modified it for 2016 because mine has no hestiation, shifts quickly, & almost imperceptably. VW must be doing somethings right after the diesel drama -- they had to in order to continue to complete in the US small car market! And seriously, how likely are you to keep this next car longer than their factory warranty?

You said you don't like "gadgety" stuff. Golf's basic controls are simple & intuitive. If you want to mess with things you can get "gadgety" but it isn't required. Same with Subie which partially explains why I have one of each.

From a woman's point of view, my wife loves the OBMy wife favors the OB but likes everything bout the Golf except the increased road noise and she finds the seat bottom a little short for her after an your in it. She alsohates gadgets!

The Kia Niro or a Subie Crosstrek would also tick most of your boxes but fall pretty short on the "sporty" part. But maybe the seat would fit you well.

Given a great large rig with AWD, I'd take the chance that ticks 90% of theLe boxes and get the fun one. Please keep us posted.





2

Link to this reponse

Response from LectroFuel

1:43 am August 24, 2018

The Prius v is another wagon-like car. More interior space than the C-Max I believe. It isn't the best driving car, but I would think there would be some big discounts right now. It is being discontinued this year. It has the top-notch reliability from a Toyota lasting over 200k miles and you'll save gas. The driving experience is not that good however. "Sporty" is not how you would describe it. I would definitely pick it over the C-Max because it is more reliable and they are both outdated. Have fun test-driving a dozen cars!

The Niro is surprisingly small in the cargo area. Not large enough for your dogs. The regular Prius Liftback has more cargo volume than the Niro.

1

Link to this reponse

Toyota Prius v

Response from danlisahall

2:14 pm August 24, 2018

But wait, there's more! The Elantra GT is another worthy wagon we have all overlooked.

I've not driven it but is getting very good press including this one from Consumer Reports:
https://www.consumerreports.org/small-cars/2018-hyundai-elantra-gt-review-first-drive/

Here's another:https://carbuzz.com/reviews/2018-hyundai-elantra-gt-sport-review-a-grown-up-hatchback-that-s-just-hot-enough

I've not driven either but I suspect that the GT will not quite measure up to the VW Sportwagen in overall driving dynamics and fit and finish. That said, it seems to be a worthy competitor in the slim pickins world of smaller, sporty wagons. If you're cconsidering the Sportwagen I think it would be wortProbably worth your time looking at the GT to compare cargo space and seat feel behind the wheel.

3

Link to this reponse

Hyundai Elantra GT

Response from LectroFuel

5:19 pm August 24, 2018

The dogs could probably fit in the trunk of the Elantra GT when the seats are down, but not with them up. The space inside of the cargo area is about 10 cu ft less than the VW Sportwagen. It would be a good car for your other needs, however.

1

Link to this reponse

Response from LectroFuel

1:32 am August 25, 2018

Response from AcuraT

4:37 pm August 25, 2018

Nice add Danlisahall. Forget that one model from my list. It is probably too small like the Kia but it should be looked at as well as the reliablity should be very similar.

1

Link to this reponse

Response from danlisahall

8:01 pm August 25, 2018

Interestingly I just saw a video where a guy put his road racing bike in the back of the Niro with both wheels on. Not too bad.

Just for fun, lets compare some cargo space numbers:
Cargo Space Audi A3 Sportback: 13.6 cf, w seat up, 33.7. Wheelbase 168"
Cargo Space in VW sportwagen: 30.5 cf w seat up, 66.5 w seat up, Wheelbase 180"
Cargo Space in Kia Niro: 19.4 cf w seat up, 54.5 w seat down. Wheelbase 172"
Cargo Space in Elantra GT: 29.4 cr w seat up, 55.1 w seat down. Wheelbase 171"
Cargo Space in Outback 35. 5 cf w seat up, 73.3 w seat down. Wheel base 190"

I threw in OB just for comparison, obviously it has the most spacious. But not so sporty.

If your dogs fit comfortable in your A3 they will think they have the Master Suite in any of the others!

Advantage Golf in vitually every category except reliablity (maybe)!

Still, ya gotta see 'em in person & get a litte seat time behind the wheel.
Can't wait to hear what you pick>

1

Link to this reponse

Response from kmacd1741

1:35 pm August 26, 2018

To be real I never put two dogs in the back of my a3 they sit in the second row of my current mini clubman and blow hair into the front We drove the Alltrack and OB yesterday we liked the drive of the vw but the interior finishes on the sel dsg? Was unimpressive. The ob was very nice my husband liked the touring option style wise but that comes with so many safety gadgets it kind of of sucks the fun and drive is a little grannyish. It will be a challenge going from a A3/mini clubman to a ob but so far that's in the lead. I want to give the Volvo a spin the Subie guy says they are running out of 2018 and we need to hurry but we are also going over 30

1

Link to this reponse

Response from LectroFuel

2:49 pm August 26, 2018

I'm pretty sure the Subaru guy that says they are running out of 2018s is lying. We have over 4 more months in the year. He is trying to pressure you to buy quickly. They will have 2018s probably until March of next year. Perhaps not the dealer you are looking at, but most will have them for a long time.

The safety features you don't like are not always beeping and annoying. They are running in the background and could save your life in a potential accident. Neither of these cars drives itself. Adaptive cruise control is great when you are tired of driving, but that is as autonomous as these cars get. There is always the option of turning off the safety systems you find annoying. It is as simple as going through the menus in the instrument cluster. I didn't really think I wanted these features, but I use them everyday and I've fallen in love with them. I have seen that Subaru's safety systems work better than VW's, which is kind of jerky and has more false alarms.

0

Link to this reponse

Response from NormT

3:40 pm August 26, 2018

The TourX does not drive granny mobile like the Outback. It actually runs rings around the OB 3.6R according to Motor Trend comparison, of which they chose the former.

Tell them you want shipped price to your door. It offers the most for th less. Though the Regal Sport is less in price.



2018 Buick Regal TourX Essence For Sale In Avon | Cars.com

2018 Buick Regal TourX Essence For Sale In Avon | Cars.com

New 2018 Buick Regal TourX Essence for sale at Joyce Buick GMC in Avon, OH for $32,315. View now on Cars.com.

1

Link to this reponse

Response from LectroFuel

6:17 pm August 26, 2018

You should test drive the Regal TourX. You'll see that it rides nicer than the VW, but also handles pretty well, too. Doesn't have the sharp steering feel of the VW, but it is pretty close. The Outback, as you have felt, has a soft suspension not meant for handling. The Outback will have the best interior of the three. The VW's interior is conservatively styled, but I think the materials are nice. The Buick's interior falls short of "Buick standards," but I don't think it is too bad. The best exterior styled wagon is the Buick IMO. Going with the Buick or Subie means you'll lose out on the VW's super good DSG transmission. The Subaru has a CVT and the Buick has a notably slow shifting 8 speed. The Subaru has notably more space than the others when the seats are flat.

Wagon Comparison

0

Link to this reponse

Response from mkaresh

7:07 pm August 26, 2018

While there are four months left in the calendar year, 2019 Outbacks are already arriving at dealers. So they SHOULD be running low on 2018s.

1

Link to this reponse

Response from kmacd1741

8:36 pm August 26, 2018

While the buick looks nice there are not many in my area CA and those are 38-40 which is way over my budget. Not able to find any used ones closer than 350 miles away. Ill keep looking around but at that price im not sure how hard ill try....I am driving a 2017 volvo next week- I dont usually get brand new cars id rather take a better pre owned. and maybe extend the warranty.Dont get me wrong the SUBIE was nice and still a contender just the sales guy a little pushy. Oh and the Kia soul is a no go looks too small and a bit quirky.

1

Link to this reponse

Response from AcuraT

10:07 pm August 26, 2018

You are right - that Buick is a new car and they are not discounting much anywhere right now. I just looked in April and the wagon was impossible to find (availabiity is a little better now, but not much). It is a nice car and I liked it but I was not wiling to pay what they wanted as it is a new model MSRP was not what I was willing to go for.

Not too surprised the Kia Soul is too small - what I wrote above. As I wrote above, Volvo is not as reliable as the Subaru and far more expensive to fix when the warranty runs out, but it is a nice car that handles well. I did test drive one but I looked into the maintenance and watch out - unless you are planning to do it yourself maintenance at the 30,000 point is $600. Smaller intervals are like $200 - $300. It was like my Saab all over again.

I cheated in the end when I could not get the wagon I wanted (either the Buick or the Subaru) for a good price. As I have mentioned elsewhere, when a tree fell on my Saab 9-3 back in April this year (12 years old, over 170,000 on it) I also looked at five door hatchbacks and mid-sized SUVs (which I thought I would never ever do). I ended up with a 2018 Buick Envision Premium II AWD with every option for less than $39,000 (over $13,000 off). If you can find a 2018 you might be able to get a new one in your price range. It is a very reliable car as it launched in the USA three years ago and it never has had any issues according to Consumer Reports so far. It was in its second year of production when it launched in the USA because designed here, it is built in China. If that does not bother you, it might work for you at your price point. Not trying to push GM or an SUV, but just thought it might work for you if you want better reliablity than the Volvo and in case you don't like the Subaru. Just another cheaper option that comes to miind (if not interested, then ignore this paragraph).

1

Link to this reponse

Response from danlisahall

10:28 pm August 26, 2018

Lectofuel is usually right on. I totally agree with him about the Nanny features in the OB; especially the adaptive cruise control. I absolutely love it in our 2015 OB, but my wife doesn't simply doesn't use cruise -- never has. The lane departure warning can be a little irritating but it does cause us to pay more attention about remaining in the lane and there are no false alarms. The back up warning and blind spot warning a wonderfully helpful. Like Lectrof says, could be a lifesaver.

I do have to disagree with Lectofuel regarding how long 2018s will be on the lots. Here in the Pacific NW, the 2018 OBs are discounted ~ 10% below the 2019s, and they are going fast. I seriously doubt that there wil be any left except perhaps a few "dogs" by mid Sept. I'm not sure if dealers are sticking to the listed price or discounting more. The other advantage of getting a 2018 is there is a 0% financing (48 months I believe). A 2018 Limited is likely to cost $32-33K. You can probably get a premium for < $30K before taxes.

Last week I saw a white 2018 Limited w Auto Stop Reverse Braking and Steering Responsive Head lights for "only" $32,400 and 0% financing. Those are the only two features I wish I had on my 2015. So I spoke to my wife about trading up, but 48 hours later it was gonners! I searched a 300 mile radius and could not find any similar for less than $1,000 more in colors that didn't interest me. No pressure but just saying if you find one you really like...

Another option is finding a CPO 2017 or 2016 OB for 15-20% off price of a new one. While you will see various opinions, there are not a whole lot of changes in the 2018 model over the 2015-2017. The 18s are a bit smoother & quieter, have available steering responsive head lamps (a very nice feature, standard on Touring, optional on Limited, and a new head unit with Apple CarPlay. AppleCar play is a very nice feature (works like a charm in my Golf), however, it a small percentage of 2018 owners are reporting that they are having a lot of head unit problems. Some have had to have their reflashed several times & some have been replaced.

Regarding "sporty:, you can improve the OB's handling noticably with a Subaru STI rear sway bar (19mm or 20 mm). Still no sports car, but corners flatter and less affected by winds on highway. Cost is < $100. Well worth it in my opinion - installed it on 3 of my Subies.

Last but not least; one other nit to pick with Lectrofuel is that the AT in the VW Sportwagen while 6 spds in not a GSD (98% confident about that). The AT in the Sportwagen AllTrack is a 6 spd DSG. My 2017 Golf Wolfsberg AT is the standard 6 speed. It is fast, smooth & sure on its shifts. Reputedly less troubles than with the DSG

1

Link to this reponse

Response from LectroFuel

6:10 pm August 27, 2018

Looks like I was wrong. The closest Subaru dealer near me is discounting their 2018s by only 8%, but they do have some nice financing and lease deals on them. My dealer only has 50 2018 OBs and 84 2019s. I was assuming they had a lot of 2018s left. Most times I have been looking to buy a car, the dealer has the previous model year in stock a month or two into the next year. Maybe that just happens in my area.

I would take the time to go to a dealer that doesn't have pushy salespeople. Get someone that deserves the commission they make off you. Of course, getting the best price is more important.

If you get a Certified Pre-Owned car, most brands give you 7 years and a 100k mile powertrain warranty included. Sometimes, even a 1 year bumper to bumper warranty and a few free oil changes.

About the DSG, I wasn't sure until I looked it up that the Sportwagen only comes with a DSG when equipped with 4Motion AWD. FWD models have the standard 6 speed. Unfortunately, that means you'll have to get the lowest trim for AWD/DSG. The Alltrack has the DSG on all the trims if you opt for it over the manual.

0

Link to this reponse

Response from danlisahall

2:32 am August 28, 2018

Pushy salespeople: One of the best ways to avoid that person is to do you initial contact online. Most dealerships have a person who handles all the online inquires. They assume (correctly so in most cases) that if you contacted them online you're a savvy buyer who has a good idea what you want & a pretty good understanding of pricing, average sales price for a particular model and what wiggle room there may be. So you tend to get less BS with them -- not always but often!

2

Link to this reponse

Response from kmacd1741

8:22 pm August 29, 2018

I drove the Volvo xc60 and I liked it..I may have to drive the subaru again at a different dealership..but the 2017 awd volvo was only 28000 with 20,000 miles and warranty left..........still looking

2

Link to this reponse

Volvo XC60
Subaru Outback
Volkswagen Golf Alltrack

Response from AcuraT

10:51 pm August 29, 2018

I think the Volvo depends on which end of the length range you listed originally - 5 to 10 years life span. Asking for ten years on a Volvo is a tough task these days, asking for 5 years is more doable. Not saying you won't have any problems, and there are brands that are more reliable as discussed above, but for five years - the Volvo maybe okay. As I wrote, they are hit and miss.

A five year old XC60 according to Consumer Reports shows (as usual) Volvo has average reliablity. Worse than most the Japanese and some of the American models, better than many (not all) European models. They have minor engine issues (like radiator hoses breaking, things are not too expensive to fix for the most part) and minor transmission issues (rough shifting but nothing that needs to be repaired) - those two fields rank essentially average for 2013. Paint/trim and body integrity (rattles) are also average. Power equipment and in car electronics are slightly below average. That is it. Nothing that will kill you with expensives, but it might be annoying.

The car has not been redesigned since 2010 according to Consumer Reports so it is a known design (it was redesigned for 2018 so you are smart to stay away from that model as new problems are bound to develop). For 2010 (8 years out) it does not do as well and overall reliablity falls to below average. It has much worse than average minor engine problems, below average major transmission issues, average minor transmission issues, much below average drive system issues, below average electrical system problems, average in fuel system issues, average in suspension, brakes, and in car electronics, below average in paint/trim and power equipment, and much below average body integrity. First year of production and 8 years out - a terrible car.

So it depends on how long you want to keep it. You probably can bear it for 5 years, but soon thereafter you will have to get rid of it (high probably). I don't know if that helps or not, but that is my take on the Volvo. Best of luck.

1

Link to this reponse

Response from kmacd1741

3:58 pm October 2, 2018

Response from LectroFuel

6:57 pm October 2, 2018

Congratulations! Thanks for responding! There is a section on this TrueDelta website that you can post a review for your car and tell us your likes and dislikes about it if you want.

1

Link to this reponse

Response from AcuraT

7:11 pm October 2, 2018

Best of luck with your new car. If you love it that is the right choice for you. Hope it gives you a long troublefree life, and thanks for sharing.

2

Link to this reponse

Response from mkaresh

11:33 pm October 2, 2018

I think we have a way for you to specify in a reply which car you bought, using menus. Once you select the XC60 this way it's photo will appear at the top :)

1

Link to this reponse

Sign in or join TrueDelta to post your own thoughts.

Return to top