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The Right Car for Me | TrueDelta


Been looking at the EX35 infinity, mazda6, and others. Allready own a 2002 Lexus IS300 and a 1993 Nissan 240SX and I love them both but the steiring on the 240 is exceptional (better than the Lexus). I would like to find a replacment fo the 240 Nissan with steiring like that, light and supple and a balance qualities that is subjective yet rewarding. Its dificult for me to get much extended drive time behind the wheel of these interests because i live in a remote area. Has anyone driven both of these cars who could describe their impression and enjoyment of these two. I realize they are different, but I suspect they both have the balance of qualities I am looking for. Is the Infinity near as reliable as the Lexus? Which one is more fun/impressive? Is there another recomendation?

Priorities: Reliability & durability / Handling / Exterior styling / Interior styling / Front seat support & comfort

Preferred Bodystyle(s): Sedan / Hatch / Wagon

Car Needs: Daily commuter / Errands about town / Long trips

Primary Driver(s): Short driver / Tall driver

Need minimum of 4 seats

Will consider both new and used cars
Maximum mileage: 100000
Maximum age: 10 years

Maximum price: US $ 18000

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Response from mkaresh

11:51 am June 29, 2015

It's very hard to find good steering in a recent car. I like the EX, but its steering is fairly numb. The steering in the related G35 / G37 sedan is a little better. But still far closer to your IS than your 240SX.

The 2014 and up Mazda6 might have the best steering among mainstream midsize sedans, but it still feels like a midsize sedan, and so not nearly as sporty as the 240SX. The smaller Mazda3 feels more agile. Then again, it will probably be hard to find either as a 2014 within your price range.

Instead, I'd advise another coupe.

The Scion FR-S and Subaru BRZ (essentially the same car) can be a lot of fun. Owners have reported some problems with them, but nothing major, and most should have had these problems fixed by now (a chirping fuel pump, an uneven idle, tail light condensation). The main downside for these cars is that they're too noisy on the highway. Around town, no issue.

If you do want to trade some sportiness for lower noise levels, look for a 2013 or newer Hyundain Genesis Coupe.

I've checked, and it's possible to find 2013s of any of these for under $18,000.

I'd also suggest a Mazda Miata, but it has no rear seat.

I personally own a Mazda RX-8, and it steers better than anything but the Miata, and is far more livable on the highway than the FR-S/BRZ, but fuel economy is poor (high teens suburbs, low 20s highway) and reliability is iffy. Cheap to buy, though.


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Scion FR-S
Subaru BRZ
Hyundai Genesis Coupe

Response from Member6464

12:36 am June 30, 2015

I forgot to mention the IS300 is the sportcross, which is a big bump for me. I drove the FRS/BRZ and loved it but worried it might be a bit small, I am 60 now and the future of getting in and out of a small low car concerns me. I like the 240sx a lot but it is small and its age and size are the the reasons I am looking further. Also drove the Genisis coupe, same thing, yet they are contenders. If the stering on the EX35 is not worse than the IS300 I guess I would like to go that route. What do you think the down side of the EX35 is for you? Sometime I think I should just go and buy a second IS300 sportcross. I cant get behind the looks of the RX8 and the reliability, but I understand its a great car. I really value you opinion Michael and besides my preference for an auto, we really run in the same vein. I am not an aggresive driver and I do not need much power but I can get subtle rush off of good stering even in the city, and that is what we do most of the time. When many things are balanced and grooving together, a sort of magic happens. So I guess I would like to know, if you had to choose between a Mazda6 and an EX35, which would you choose?


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Response from mkaresh

12:47 pm June 30, 2015

Ah, the best of the first-gen IS300s...if only it were offered with a manual :)

Since you're looking for a wagon, the EX might be your best bet. My wife really liked the one we had for a week a few years ago (I haven't driven one more recently). The main disadvantage is that they're about the size of an IS 300 inside. Which probably isn't an issue for you. And the slightly higher ride height might be a good fit.

One other possibility: Acura TSX wagon.

I never found the Mazda6 all that fun, too large, but your impression could differ. Worth a look if you can find one to drive.


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Infiniti EX
Acura TSX

Response from Tim P

3:29 pm June 30, 2015

I don't have much to add on those cars nor much beyond what Michael said, but I agree that you won't find steering like the 240SX in anything recent. I learned this a few years ago when I was test driving about anything I could find with a manual transmission that looked somewhat practical and engaging. Everything felt numb compared to my aging 2000 Accord Coupe, and I was particularly disappointed with an Infiniti G35. (I even found a sedan with a manual transmission and really wanted to like that car, but I didn't. However I did test drive a BMW 328i a couple nights before).

I wound up buying a 2012 Mazda 3 (then new), which has some steering feel, and I really like the car, but I'm not sure how the new ones are. If you come across a well-maintained first gen (I think up until 2008) Acura TSX, however, you may want to take a close look at it. It's a nice cross between fun, luxury, fairly roomy without being a barge, and still some decent steering feedback. I seriously considered a 2008 model, but I wound up getting the 2012 Mazda 3 instead.


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Mazda Mazda3
Acura TSX

Response from Member6464

11:08 am July 4, 2015

Your probably going to think I am crazy but, I also drive a Toyota truck 2wd. and after I test drive a lot of cars i get back in my truck and think, I like the stering on this thing better than what I just drove. Does anyone else have that revalation? I am getting more uncertain than ever and just feel like test driving the Mazda3 hatch and EX35 some more and keep driving the 240SX for another year. Thanks for all the help. this place is the best for inteligent input.


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Response from mkaresh

12:30 pm July 4, 2015

Have you driven the Mazda3 and EX yet?

Another possibility is the Mazda CX-3, which will be available in the fall. One other reviewer said it reminded him of the Mazda Protege5, which had the sort of steering and handling you're looking for. (But I'll personally be surprised if it steers similarly.)


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