BUYING A CAR IN 2015

BUYING A CAR IN 2017

(WITHOUT HAVING HEADACHES IN 2018)


SPECIFIC VEHICLE RECOMMENDATIONS - Midsize Luxury SUVs:

These vehicles are the same size as the previous category (Midsize SUVs), but emphasize more luxury than utility. Luxury SUVs are designed for on road use mainly. Do not expect snow tread tires or skid plates. Most of the recommended vehicles are better handling (less tippy) than most SUVs, but should still be driven like SUVs (slower). 4 wheel drive versions are great for snow covered states.

Acura MDX - Cleanly styled and very easy to live with. High quality, clean styling, and great handling on and off road. Same basic vehicle as the Honda Pilot, but more luxurious. Standard 3rd row seat. Excellent reliability. V6, 4 wheel drive. Paramedics claim that this is the safest vehicle in a crash.

RATINGS:
Acceleration:
Braking:
Fuel Cost:
Seating:
Reliability:
Trunk space:
Towing:
Hauling:
Collision avoidance:
3 - Adequate for most situations
2 - Takes 125 to 130 ft to stop.  Average for today's cars.
2 - 15 to 19 mpg on regular or 17 to 21 on premium fuel
4 - Comfortable for 4 on trips
5 - Best there is.  More reliable used than many new cars
5 - Cavernous
4 - Can tow up to 5000 lb - 20 ft I/O boat/5X10 Uhaul trailer
4 - Has space and weight capacity for heavier items
4 - Performs well in emergency maneuvers


Lexus RX350 - Sister to the Toyota Highlander. Vehicle and engine are larger than the older RX300. Very nice handling. Excellent reliability. V6, front or 4 wheel drive Available in an electric hybrid version called the RX400h.

RATINGS:
Acceleration:
Braking:
Fuel Cost:
Seating:
Reliability:
Trunk space:
Towing:
Hauling:
Collision avoidance:
3 - Adequate for most situations
2 - Takes 125 to 130 ft to stop.  Average for today's cars.
3 - 20 to 24 mpg on regular or 22 to 26 on premium fuel
4 - Comfortable for 4 on trips
5 - Best there is.  More reliable used than many new cars
5 - Cavernous
3 - Can tow up to 3500 lb - outboard boat or 5X8 Uhaul
3 - Easy to load and handles TVs and lawnmowers easily
4 - Performs well in emergency maneuvers


Acura RDX - Smaller than the MDX. That will make reliability and maintenance appreciably cheaper. High quality, clean styling, and great handling on and off road. Seating for 5 only. Excellent reliability. V6, front or all wheel drive. And surprisingly good gas mileage.

RATINGS:
Acceleration:
Braking:
Fuel Cost:
Seating:
Reliability:
Trunk space:
Towing:
Hauling:
Collision avoidance:
4 - Quite spritely
3 - Takes 120 to 125 ft to stop.  Good for non sports car.
3 - 20 to 24 mpg on regular or 22 to 26 on premium fuel
4 - Comfortable for 4 on trips
5 - Best there is.  More reliable used than many new cars
5 - Cavernous
2 - Can tow a small trailer (4X7/motorcycle/jet ski)
4 - Has space and weight capacity for heavier items
4 - Performs well in emergency maneuvers


Lexus GX - Lexus' smaller truck based SUV. Similar to Toyota 4Runner. Of course, it's forte is luxury rather than off road prowess, but it's still a truck with the capabilities and low gas mileage thereof. V8, 4 wheel drive.

RATINGS:
Acceleration:
Braking:
Fuel Cost:
Seating:
Reliability:
Trunk space:
Towing:
Hauling:
Collision avoidance:
3 - Adequate for most situations
1 - Takes over 130 ft to stop.  Rather longish.
2 - 15 to 19 mpg on regular or 17 to 21 on premium fuel
4 - Comfortable for 4 on trips
5 - Best there is.  More reliable used than many new cars
5 - Cavernous
4 - Can tow up to 5000 lb - 20 ft I/O boat/5X10 Uhaul trailer
4 - Has space and weight capacity for heavier items
3 - Has a decent chance of avoidance


Infiniti QX70 - Renamed from FX35/FX50. Not the same vehicle as a Nissan Murano. Has a normal 7 speed automatic transmission rather than CVT. Shorter than most in this category, this vehicle is designed more for stylish around town capacity than for off-roading or work. Lots of power. Great handling and brakes. Suspension is stiff due to sport orientation. Excellent reliability. V6 or V8, rear or four wheel drive.

RATINGS:
Acceleration:
Braking:
Fuel Cost:
Seating:
Reliability:
Trunk space:
Towing:
Hauling:
Collision avoidance:
4 - Quite spritely
3 - Takes 120 to 125 ft to stop.  Good for non sports car.
2 - 15 to 19 mpg on regular or 17 to 21 on premium fuel
4 - Comfortable for 4 on trips
5 - Best there is.  More reliable used than many new cars
4 - Swallows large household items
3 - Can tow up to 3500 lb - outboard boat or 5X8 Uhaul
3 - Easy to load and handles TVs and lawnmowers easily
4 - Performs well in emergency maneuvers


Infiniti QX60 - Renamed from JX35. Not the traditionally size SUV. Has the same 3.5 litre V6/Continuously Varible Transmission (CVT)/front wheel or all wheel drive drivetrain as the Nissan Murano rather than the QX50/70 drivetrain. Also set up more like a station wagon with longer body and not set up as high, resulting in more room for 3rd seat passengers and better gas mileage. Probably typical high reliability as other Infinitis.

RATINGS:
Acceleration:
Braking:
Fuel Cost:
Seating:
Reliability:
Trunk space:
Towing:
Hauling:
Collision avoidance:
3 - Adequate for most situations
2 - Takes 125 to 130 ft to stop.  Average for today's cars.
2 - 15 to 19 mpg on regular or 17 to 21 on premium fuel
5 - Comfortable for 5 or 6 on trips, more around town
5 - Best there is.  More reliable used than many new cars
5 - Cavernous
3 - Can tow up to 3500 lb - outboard boat or 5X8 Uhaul
4 - Has space and weight capacity for heavier items
4 - Performs well in emergency maneuvers


Infiniti QX50 - Renamed from EX35. Smaller version of the FX35/QX70, and has the same engine and transmission. Smaller than most in this category, this vehicle is designed more as a taller, more useful sports car than for off-roading or work. Lots of power. Great handling and brakes. Suspension (ride) is stiff due to sport orientation. Excellent reliability. 6 cyl, rear or four wheel drive.

RATINGS:
Acceleration:
Braking:
Fuel Cost:
Seating:
Reliability:
Trunk space:
Towing:
Hauling:
Collision avoidance:
4 - Quite spritely
2 - Takes 125 to 130 ft to stop.  Average for today's cars.
3 - 20 to 24 mpg on regular or 22 to 26 on premium fuel
4 - Comfortable for 4 on trips
5 - Best there is.  More reliable used than many new cars
4 - Swallows large household items
1 - Don't do it
3 - Easy to load and handles TVs and lawnmowers easily
4 - Performs well in emergency maneuvers