My 1999 Subaru Legacy Outback recently died (I think I’m still in mourning), but I need to start thinking about a new car. I live in Boston, so most of my day-to-day driving is in the city, but I also drive down to New York and up to New Hampshire, Maine, and Vermont pretty regularly. I bike a lot, hike even more (all seasons, which means a LOT of gear in the winter), and like using my car as HQ during expeditions. At the same time, I want something that would be city friendly (so nothing too big), has modern features, and won’t guzzle gas. On top of this, I’m looking to spend between $8K and $12K, so I think i’ll definitely be buying used. My immediate thoughts were another Subaru. Maybe another Legacy, or Impreza hatch-back. I’m not really sure what kind of similar offerings exist from other car manufacturers these days and, for my money, I’m not sure what year car and what mileage I should be expecting.
Given my above conditions what make/models do you guys think might be good options and what year/mileage do you think I should expect for what I can afford? I’ve condensed my needs below.
Space for bikes, hiking gear, and people
To be rugged enough to handle the above
All wheel drive or good performance in bad weather or back roads
Modern features (never had a car newer than 1999)
Cost between $8K and $12K