Looking for a new appliance to get around

My appliance to get around is 10 years old, and I am thinking of replacing it before old age troubles start. I haven’t done any car shopping for a decade, and I can really use all the help I can get, thanks!

There is the usual expectations of a small car for city driving (and parking!) grocery shopping, running errands, etc. It should be very dependable, fuel efficient, easy/cheap to maintain/repair, etc.

I have also the following wish list:

  • 5 door hatchback, my wife likes to buy plants that are too tall to put in a trunk (and would mess up the passenger cabin)
  • seats 4, adjustable driver seat (I am short, I shall not sit in a ‘bathtub’) heated front seats, foldable rear seats
  • I really like the new safety features that I read about (and that my present, 10 year old car does not have) backup cameras, blind-spot monitoring, automatic emergency braking
  • our summers can get hot, so need an air conditioner and fabric seats (not plastic) our winters can get cold, so need a high-power battery
  • basic audio features, etc.

I am hoping to get a decent car for a fair price. I would consider only a traditional gas engine vehicle. Any suggestions?

Given the market for cars these days if you are happy with it drive on and wait for the market to loosen up.


Honda CRV. I had a RAV4 and liked it and they are about the same and don’t take up a lot of space.

Pretty much anything on the lot is going to have power seats, air, and a heavy battery if up north. Cloth is standard and leather an upgrade. In our area, the Acura dealers don’t stock anything except all wheel drive. Pretty much anywhere you go such as Ford, GM, Honda, Acura, Toyota, will have something that fits your list, but bring money, lots of it. I like the 50,000 mile warranty from Acura but you’d have a hard time finding cloth seats.

Prius for great mpgs and reliability.

+1 to this advice. 10 years old for a car isn’t “old” anymore. The average age of cars on the road is almost 12 years nor is 100, 000 miles near the end of life.

Dealers are marking up cars $5000, $10,000 and more over list price right now. If you can wait a bit until the market settles back more to normal, you should save some money.


What price range are you looking?

Yep, if you can reasonably wait then wait. I was thinking about a new car, then found the dealers have very few at huge markups. So we’re keeping our 11 and 14 year old cars.

I just checked, only two new Priuses within 100 miles of me.

Well you don’t say what you call a decent price . So I guess you have not noticed that vehicle , homes , groceries and about every thing you can think of is marked at high prices . If you really want to replace the current vehicle then the web is your friend .

Go to all the vehicle and you can see what they have and prices ( not including dealer markups ) . The same for used vehicles .

Prices are just starting to come down on used cars, if that’s what you want. Now cars will likely continue to sell at MSRP or higher for a while. If there aren’t any problems now, hold onto it for another six months and then reconsider.

Looking for a new appliance to get around



sorry I had too. :rofl:


A few days ago, I read an interview with someone from Edmunds, and he stated that he expected the automotive chip shortage to ease somewhat toward the end of this calendar year. That will probably help with auto inventories, but–as you stated–I think that MSRP or higher pricing is going to be with us for awhile.

I agree with all the advice to wait, your car is not ready to die nor getting near it’s trouble stage (as long as you have been doing all its required maintenance, ie: oil and fluid changes, timing chain if needed, etc…)…

You want that “New Car Feel” take your car into a High-End Detail shop and get the works (steam cleaning, shampooing, “spritz” with New-Car-fragrance, "gas petal message, warm messaging moonstones).

You will feel like a new person and your car will feel like a new ride…

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Another step toward “looks like new” is new headlight assemblies. And you’ll likely see better at night, too.

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I am frequently shocked at how many cars that I see in parking lots have “cataracts” on their headlight assemblies.
A LOT of people are apparently driving around at night, almost blind.

It would be nice if the made the headlight assembly front in glass. but I guess that’s wishful thinking.

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No, they just drive with their hi beams on full time in South Jersey.

Ed B.

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Ja but careful what you wish for. My Riv had glass instead of plastic. The problem was they would get sand blasted and no way to polish them. Had to replace the whole assembly. I’ve never had my plastic ones have the same sand blasting problem.

I don’t know if any of these are offered as a hatch-back, but any vehicle you consider to buy should be compared (price, terms, warranty etc) to these, the big 3 econoboxes.

Honda Civic, Toyota Corolla, Mazda 3

George_San_Jose1 suggested three good choices. I have a 2019 Toyota Corolla SE hatchback. It’s a great little car, zippy, lots of power, good riding comfort, great gas mileage, BUT, do not ask me to put a grocery bag under the hatchback cover-it will not fit… It’s amazing how small the hatchback storage area really is. I highly recommend the Toyota Corolla and even the hatchback, just be aware that there are somethings the hatchback will not carry, like groceries…

And to put this into perspective, if you have to put a box that is more than 12" high into the hatch area of the Toyota, it will just fit, if it’s higher, you will have to remove the hatch cover or put it in the back seat. On the other hand, my wife’s 2020 Honda Fit will allow a box of 22" to fit under the hatch cover. All things to consider…