Thursday, October 27, 2011

SUV Buying Info - Part 2

I was going to do this yesterday but I got carried away with rambling about my second trip to BMW.  The BMW guy still didn't email me back, I'll take that as a no.  Just for kicks I emailed a Toronto BMW dealer and he said he could get me into a BMW 328i Xdrive for $600 a month for 48 month lease, which is almost $60 a month less or almost $3,000 over term of the lease.  I asked him to forward me the details of the deal so I can see where he is making up the extra, I will post that when I get it.  It's just a shame that the local guy won't make me the same offer, or even bother to email me back.

Anyway on to part two of SUV buying info.  My plan was to talk about cross-over vehicles a bit but I realized I have already discussed a bunch of vehicles that can be classified as crossovers.  I think just about all SUV type vehicles are crossovers these days which is basically an SUV that rides like a car on a car type chassis…. Also know as a station wagon.  Crossovers include Ford Escape, Edge and Explorer, Honda CRV’s, Toyota Rav-4’s, Mazda CX-7 and 9, Nissan Rogue, Volkswagen Tiguan and Touareg, Subaru Forester and Outback, Suzuki Grand Vitara, Kia Sportage, Hyundai Tucson, Chevy Equinox….etc etc.

So what is not a crossover….. Jeep Cherokee and Landrovers from what I can see.  I refuse to call my Honda Pilot a crossover but I think it might be, at least the new ones are. 

I can understand why these vehicles sell well here in Newfoundland, I mean 4WD is useful here for our winters but why would they be so popular in warmer climates?  Maybe they just sell a lot of the 2WD versions down there.  It wasn’t that long ago that no one drove a 4WD and now 50% of the vehicles on the road are an SUV of some type or another.  Gas prices are starting to dent the SUV trend I think but the engines are becoming more fuel efficient to combat the rising gas prices.  Most people who live in the St. John’s area probably only drive a few hundred KMs a week anyway so gas prices are not as impactful here.  You are looking at a difference of about 5 or 6 mpg for a standard SUV compared to a mid sized sedan on average or 7 or 8 compared to a compact sedan.  That’s just a rough estimates but fairly accurate.

SUVs (also including crossovers) have the advantage of being able to hold more crap in the back on top of the 4WD option over most cars.  Some cars do offer 4WD, most notably sport sedans like BMWs and Subaru which must have had a Newfoundlander on staff when they decided to have AWD on all vehicles.  You have to ask yourself, how often do I need the extra crap room, and do I need 4WD.  If you need room often and want 4WD then I guess you need an SUV.  Of course they cost more than a nicely appointed sedan and have 20-30% lower fuel economy.

Now I have myself thinking about that BMW again…. I checked out the Audi A4 today and they look nice as well and can be leased for $40 less than the BMW a month.  I wonder if they will offer me any kind of a deal…. I’ll check it out and let you know.

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