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Looking for a new car

I’m looking for some opinions: I’m currently in the market for a new car, and here’s what I’m looking for/possibly helpful information:

- I take several cross country trips a year. The majority of my driving is highway driving.

- With my job I’m always moving, so I need enough cargo space to move everything I need with me (I currently drive a 99 Ford Taurus and fit everything that car. It’s snug)

- When in the west I do a lot of outdoors/camping activities, so am looking for something with high clearance and 4WD or AWD.

- Good gas mileage is always a plus

- Either used or new is fine

I’ve been told I should get an SUV of sorts… thoughts/Comments/Suggestions? Anything would be helpful! Thanks!

Sounds like a Subaru Forester or Outback (non-turbo) would be two good options.

Good fuel economy, large interior space and 4 WD don’t go together.

Your best overall vehicle would be a 4 cylinder hatchback with front wheel drive only. If it’s that muddy, you won’t be doing any landscaping. Since you drive cross country, get something that can be fixed in rural Tennessee. That excludes a Volkswagen station wagon, in case someone brings that up.

The Hyundai Elantra Touring has a lot of space inside, more than your Taurus. It gets better gas mileage than the Taurus, has a very durable 4 cylinder engine and is pleasant to drive on the highway. You will really get your money’s worth out of it.

I don’t recommend the Toyota Matrix for long trips. Although a hatchback, it does not ride as well and is noisy.

For what you want, stay away from any Jeep products; they are tiring on a long trip and not very reliable by comparison.

The smallest cross-over Chevy (Equinox) has good inside room can be had with 2 wheel drive, has lots of ground clearance and is reasonably reliable. It might be the best choice for you. There is a GMC version as well.

Another plus for the Equinox is that the 4-cyl gets 32 MPH on the highway; best among small SUVs. I prefer the looks for the Equinox to it’s fraternal twin, the GMC Terrain. If you get the 4-cyl, you should stick with the 2WD version. AWD is $1500 more and the small engine won’t move the AWD version well.