Piston Slap: Of Cost and Axle Differentials?
We have three cars in our household that see regularly use, but we are considering going down to two vehicles in an attempt to save some money. However, instead of just getting rid of one of those three cars, we are trading in two of them toward a newer vehicle that we plan to keep long term.
The two cars we plan to get rid of are a Toyota Camry (180,000 miles) and Honda Insight (260,000 miles). While the Camry is mechanically in fine condition, it’s also 10 years old, including six years of kids doing what kids do best to interiors: destroying them. The Insight is five years older than the Camry, has a check engine light on, IMA light on, and recently a deer decided to headbutt the driver’s side door.
We have narrowed our choices down to two options: Subaru Crosstrek or Acura TSX Wagon. Pretty far apart from each other on a number of fronts, but each would meet our requirements in different ways. Given our penchant for wringing the life out of cars, which one of these, with proper maintenance, will reliably see 250,000 miles?
Both will reliably see 250,000 miles with proper care. That’s not my concern. Instead, my concern is twofold: which one is a better ride for your needs and your wallet?
If the Subaru’s trademark ride and handling demeanor is your cup of tea, just buy one with good service history (assuming you are looking used) and go forward in a state of bliss. If not, consider the TSX for repair related reasons. There could be fewer repairs because front-wheel-drive vehicles have fewer moving parts than their all-wheel drive counterparts. And with a traditional inline four-cylinder (not a boxer) in that Acura, the labor involved could be cheaper.
That said, the Acura’s surprising thirst for premium fuel is disappointing. The Subie’s economy isn’t handicapped by its AWD performance. Therefore, the fuel cost differential will likely make up for the Subie’s extra differential, if you catch my drift.
Unless you must have the Acura’s entry-level luxury trimmings, go with the Subie.
Send your queries to firstname.lastname@example.org. Spare no details and ask for a speedy resolution if you’re in a hurry…but be realistic, and use your make/model specific forums instead of TTAC for more timely advice.
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