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Need a new car

I need to replace my current car. I sell real estate, and drive customers around to look at homes, so I need a 4-door vehicle. I want a car with relatively spacious back seat leg room, leather, sunroof, heated seats, all the bells and whistles - for $25,000 or less. Suggestions? I am thinking that a 3-4 year-old car coming off a lease might be the best route, (I have had good luck with cars coming off of leases), but could use suggestions on makes and models.

For good back seat room and accessibility a CUV would be good - a Highlander or an RX350 would work, for example.

My real estate ladies both drove the exact car you mention with the Honda Accord EX-L.

Look at brand new as the 2012 model is at the end of generation and they have heavy incentives to get rid of the 2012 crop with the upcoming 2013.

Used cars from 3-4 years ago are very expensive due to the recession that made an extreme dent in used car inventory.

I’d second the 2008 or later Accords. I’ve driven a 2008 or 2009 (don’t remember) Accord long distances and it is comfortable and got decent mileage (~30 mpg) for a car of its size. The 4 cylinder auto is pretty respectable, but if our routinely loaded up with people it might be more noticeable. It is big inside. I would classify it as a full-size car.

Why bother with a used car when you can get a brand new Hyundai Sonata that meets all of your criteria for just about $25,000? The 2013 models are out and they are no different than the 2012s. See if you can get a good deal on a ‘leftover’ 2012.

@SteveF : I agree; the Hyundai Sonata has an excellent reputation and has the most inside room in its class. It also has the most standard equipment.

Thanks - I would never have thought about the Hyundai. I’ll check the Honda, too.

I very seldom recommend leasing a car, but your needs fits into a special category. Check it out for your specific needs. You may find it cheaper to lease. Remember you get that tax deduction when you are using it for a business. Talk to a leasing rep and carefully consider it. (Note: I am not saying everyone will come out ahead when leasing. Don’t assume you will be better off leasing, just don’t assume anything.

If you investigate leasing, be sure that the mileage limit in your contract is similar to your expected mileage. You could get a great monthly price, but might get a big bill at the end if the mileage limit is low.

I have leased before, and was able to drive a much more expensive car than I could have bought, but I like the idea of (eventually) paying off a car loan and going a while with no car payments.

Another vote for the Sonata. I’ve had some pretty big people in my 2011 Sonata, and no complaints about back seat space.