With Gas prices rising is there a compromise?

Discussion in 'Homesteading Questions' started by Kenneth in NC, Apr 27, 2006.

  1. Kenneth in NC

    Kenneth in NC Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    806
    Joined:
    Nov 20, 2002
    Location:
    NC
    With the upward price of fuel we may have to trade or buy a gas mizer.

    We often haul 4 people so it needs to seat 4 large people comfortably.

    I rode to town with my neighbor in his "Ford Focus" by the time we reached town my back was killing me. I had to take a muscle relaxer and a pain pill when we got back to the house. So even though he's getting 50+ MPG that car is OUT. :grump:

    Over the past 20 years I've become accustomed to riding in either a truck or SUV. It's easier for me to get into and out of.

    So that begs the question, Is there a happy medium? Is there a SUV or 4-door truck that gets good gas mileage? By good MPG I mean 30+. :help:

    Kenneth
     
  2. beorning

    beorning Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    606
    Joined:
    Apr 13, 2006
    Location:
    Wisconsin
    I have a 2003 Toyota Echo. The front seats are as roomy as our '99 taurus. There is a ton of head room, and the driving position is pretty high up for a car. The back seats are huge. I just sat back there a week ago for the first time and was amazed at the leg room, the head room, etcetera. Of course, the wives were riding up front and keep the seats pretty far forward. 41mpg hwy. I hear the corrola is getting comparable mileage these days and is roomier.


    The Honda CRV and the Toyota RAV4 get just under what you're looking for in mileage (26-30 hwy) The Honda Element gets about the same.

    The Ford Escape Hybrid gets around 40mpg city. There are also Hybrid powertrains in the works for larger SUV's. They might even be available now.
     

  3. SteveD(TX)

    SteveD(TX) Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    5,373
    Joined:
    May 14, 2002
    I'll put my $0.02 in for the Ford Escape Hybrid. Neat little SUV, pretty roomy and comfortable to me - I'm 6'3" and 235 lbs.
     
  4. susieM

    susieM Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    4,117
    Joined:
    Apr 23, 2006
    Location:
    France
    Bicycle. Moped. Feet. Pony and cart. Stay home.
     
  5. Aintlifegrand

    Aintlifegrand Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    6,764
    Joined:
    Jun 3, 2005
    Location:
    Louisiana
    I test drove the escape and really liked it. We are looking to buy one this summer. Right now we drive a Ford F150 and the gas is killing us. We drive 90 miles RT daily.
     
  6. caberjim

    caberjim Stableboy III

    Messages:
    426
    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2004
    Location:
    Maryland
    I have had a Kia Rio hatchback the last several years. Averaging 37 mpg. Bought it new at a very low price and it has given me near zero problems for 70k miles. I'm 6'-270lbs and I'm in this for a 120 mile round trip. It's not as comfy as my wife's mini-van, but I have no complaints. Especially for the sticker price, mileage and reliability.
     
  7. homebirtha

    homebirtha Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    1,259
    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2004
    Location:
    Maryland
    50 mpg in a Ford Focus???? BWAHAHAHA!! How??? Does he have a secret for getting such great mileage? It's only rated at about 26 city, 34 highway. Oh, and I don't think your back problems have anything to do with the Focus not being an SUV. It has to do with it being a cheap POS made by Ford. It's just got crappy seats.

    And Ford Escape hybrid doesn't get 40 mpg. The highest it supposedely gets is 36 mpg in the city. Put it on the highway and it drops to 31. Real-world tests show it more in the 30 mpg range. If you're going to pony up for a hybrid, get one that actually makes a difference in the gas mileage, like the Prius (which really CAN get 50 mpg) or MAYBE the Civic, although less impressive.

    I agree with the recommendation for the Honda CRV or the RAV-4, if you really feel you need an SUV. It won't get 30 mpg, more like 25, but it's better then most. If you can't shake your need for a big truck or SUV, you're going to be paying through the nose at the pump. Your choice.

    The other possibility is a diesel truck or SUV that you could convert to run on veggie oil. That's probably more then you want to get into though.
     
  8. RandB

    RandB Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    2,251
    Joined:
    Aug 13, 2002
    Location:
    southern New Jersey
    I think you guys are missing his point, most of the vehicles you are talking about are small - sounds like he can't do a small vehicle.

    There isn't much you can do to make a big vehicle get better mileage, except maybe stick shift instead of auto, and try to keep the weight of the vehicle as low as possible, such as remove third seat if not needed, etc.
     
  9. caberjim

    caberjim Stableboy III

    Messages:
    426
    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2004
    Location:
    Maryland
    Can't? No one is so big that they MUST ride in a truck or SUV. There are lots of options in small to mid-sized vehicles that get much better gas mileage than 4-door trucks and SUVs.

    You want better mileage and more money in your pocket? Gotta get a smaller vehicle or a hybrid. Regular SUVs and large trucks are out.
     
  10. HermitJohn

    HermitJohn Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    8,614
    Joined:
    May 10, 2002
    Have you considered a small car with a custom aftermarket seat that you find comfortable? Small cars have traditionally been at the low price end of the market and car companies dont put lot effort or money into their interiors.

    I used to have a '72 Ford Courier with the skimpiest most uncomfortable bench seat I ever ran across. I'd had enough when a spring started poking up on drivers side. Replaced it with pair bucket seats out of a crunched Volvo and made all difference in the world.
     
  11. arabian knight

    arabian knight Miniature Horse lover Supporter

    Messages:
    25,223
    Joined:
    Dec 19, 2005
    Location:
    West Central WI.
    Well time for me to go around and look for police cars again~!! During the gas shortage of the late 70's I went out and bought a 3 yr old 76 Ford Police Interceptor~! NOW there was a car to pull horse trailers with~! Certified to go 175 mph That was cool a 3 year old car for ONLY 400 bucks~! I even had to put in the back door locks as there were taken out.. Still had the spot light and WOW what a motor 460 Police Interceptor~!!
     
  12. terrythetaod

    terrythetaod Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    92
    Joined:
    Oct 5, 2004
    Location:
    FL
    Kenneth... before you run out to buy a new car to "save" money, ask yourself: how long will it take to recoup my investment? Do some calculations; you can buy a lot of gas at $3 (or $4 or $5) per gallon for what you'll pay to get a new high-mileage car or truck.
     
  13. kz

    kz Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    92
    Joined:
    Jan 20, 2003
    I just bought a 4 cylinder, front-wheel drive 2006 Toyota Rav4 which is indicated to get 24 (city) and 30 (hwy) mpg. I don't have enough miles on it to calculate the mpg but I can tell you I love everything about the vehicle. Hubby is a big guy (6'3", 245) and likes the fit of it, too.

    I traded an older Explorer and wanted to stay with an SUV due to the dogs I haul around with me. I didn't trade for the mpgs but that will be a nice bonus.
     
  14. beorning

    beorning Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    606
    Joined:
    Apr 13, 2006
    Location:
    Wisconsin
    Just for the record, I'm 6'2" and weigh in at 270 pounds. No problem with the Echo at all, in terms of space. It actually feels roomier inside than our Taurus, though the Taurus seats are a bit more comfy. Must be the extra head room. I regularly give a guy I work with rides home. He's around six feet tall and weighs over 300 pounds. It doesn't feel cramped when he's in the car.

    The down side on the Echo is that its maximum recommended combined cargo and passenger weight is 900 lbs. Two more folks my size would exceed that. ( though we'd still have lots of room to sit in the car and wait for the tow truck after we broke the suspension) :)

    You are right about the Escape hybrid, homebirtha. I pulled the number I posted from a random website I googled without checking it out thoroughly. Here are the actual numbers:

    http://www.fueleconomy.gov/feg/noframes/22495.shtml

    Sorry for the error.
     
  15. agmantoo

    agmantoo agmantoo Supporter

    Messages:
    10,855
    Joined:
    May 22, 2003
    Location:
    Zone 7
    Why tolerate the cramp? A Buick Park Avenue will compete with the best of the imports for mileage without all the compromise. My last two averaged 30 MPG on the highway with plenty of room to stretch.
     
  16. luckypabst

    luckypabst Active Member

    Messages:
    29
    Joined:
    Oct 16, 2004
    Location:
    Lone Pine, CA
    30 mpg freeway if you're easy on it and 1-ton capacity, room to move - VW Vanagon diesel.
    50 mpg and somewhat "confined" (but the seats are nice) - VW Rabbit or Caddy diesel.

    Either way, brush up on your patience skills.

    Love my turbo diesel westy van! But they are pricey for a 24 year old ride.

    Chris
     
  17. Quint

    Quint Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    3,510
    Joined:
    Nov 12, 2004


    I'm 6'7" 290 and I have a terrible time finding a smaller vehicle that fits. I tried a newer Ford Taurus last weekend and there is no way I could drive that thing around on a daily basis or anywhere other than in an emergency. Not only that but it would have been physically dangerous in an accident because my head was jammed against the headliner. Not to mention my knees being jammed in the dash. The term clown car was thrown around. I'd love to find something for long trips that is better on gas than the truck that was actually non-painful to drive.

    Even in my full size 89 GM truck I had headroom issues. I had to take out the bucket seats and cut about 7 inches out of the seat risers. Even with that I have serious legroom problems as it is a standard cab. My knees stick up to the window sill.

    My buddies had cars back in high school that I literally could sit in the back seat and drive. I once got mad and ripped the drivers seat out of ford escort and left it in mall parking lot so I could drive it home.
     
  18. Ed Norman

    Ed Norman Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    4,332
    Joined:
    Jun 8, 2002
    Location:
    Idaho
    We have a 94 Park Avenue and last week drove 400 miles to town and back. It got 33 mpg. And it's paid for. I'm 6'5" and fit in it.
     
  19. Jan Doling

    Jan Doling Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    4,898
    Joined:
    May 21, 2004
    Location:
    Zone 9b
    Anyone have a Scion? What is their gas milage like? I have a friend who is a big bear of a guy and he bought one for his wife for Mother's Day and says he feels comfortable in it and couldn't believe the roominess....especially in the back seat.
     
  20. blufford

    blufford Well-Known Member Supporter

    Messages:
    2,285
    Joined:
    Nov 23, 2004
    Location:
    Delaware
    I have a 92 Plymouth Voyager Mini-van with a 6 cyl that gets almost 25MPH on the highway. Its easy to get in and out of and probably the most practical vehicle I have ever owned. Heres a neat site for finding MPH of cars.


    http://www.fueleconomy.gov/