Thinning the choices.

Discussion in 'The BS Topic' started by ol' grouch, Feb 17, 2019.

  1. ol' grouch

    ol' grouch Veteran Member

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    Geez, when I was getting older stuff, there were lots of choices. Now that I'm looking for something fairly new, if not brand new, pickings are getting mighty slim. I was looking at 20 different vehicles but I'm down to two now. I thought the Escape would be perfect but both myself and the girlfriend can't stand the seats in them. Consumer Reports says to go with leather seating as the padding is thicker but the bottom was so short, it hurt the back of her legs. We're both 6 foot so that left a LOT of things out.

    I'm down to 2 vehicles. Either a new or late model used Equinox or a late model Fusion just off lease. The Fusion is the right color and has everything I wanted to find, with one exception. I'm wanting a 4 banger due to easier maintenance. The Fusion has a 1.5 turbo Ecoboost engine. My bike has a bigger engine. It seems to do okay on the interstate but isn't much on acceleration. I can live with the slower pickup, I'm just wondering about long term reliability. I was looking for a 2.5 but they are few and far between. CR rates it pretty good and if it has the 2.5, I'd jump on it with both feet.

    The Fusion is a 2017 that went into service in October of '16 with 24,000 miles. It's a Certified car. It spent it's life so far in Lima Ohio and poking around on the navigation, the owner went to the Casino up there a lot. No corrosion evident underneath.

    The other choice is an Equinox. The GF is on her second one. I'm just luke warm on the looks and visibility.

    I know some of the folks here are current mechanics. Any suggestion on either? I went over the Fusion with a fine toothed comb and found one small sound I couldn't track down. It only did it on the interstate at 70-75. Slower no noise at all. The Equinoxes are either fully loaded new ones or really basic and shop worn used ones.

    I may still get an older car, but I'm tired of working on them all the time.
     
  2. Happy_Dan

    Happy_Dan Veteran Member

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    My wife has an Equinox and really likes it. I think it's ok.
     
  3. budro6968

    budro6968 Veteran Member

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    My sister had a fusion a she really liked. Lost it in a Hurricane that impacted St Augustine. I can't remember the name.
     
  4. Smokey15

    Smokey15 Veteran Member

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    I rented an AWD Fusion Platinum in Florida. Very nice, solid feeling car.
     
  5. AllensaurusRex

    AllensaurusRex Veteran Member

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    I can speak on this. Purchased a 2010 Chevrolet Equinox LT (4 banger - Ecotech) in Oct of 2014 with 70k miles on it for 11.9k (Private party). Indiana original car. 1 owner before me. While it was a 'reasonably' reliable vehicle, I wouldn't buy one again. We just bought a 2018 Hyundai Tucson 1.6T and are loving it. Didn't even think twice about looking at another Equinox, and I'm a Chevy guy. I'll buy Chevy 350's and LS's until I'm blue in the face, but I'm not a believer in the ecotech 4 bangers. You probably know enough about this, because your gf is on her 3rd one...but I figured I'd add my $.02.

    The Maintenance: Between 70k and 158k we:
    • Replaced the throttle body around 85k
    • Replaced the AC condenser around 120k
    • Replaced Key Fobs (P.S. just go to the dealership - don't try to DIY ebay this one...)
    • Did the timing chain, guide rails, and tensioner TWICE (once at 99k and once at 134k) - More on this below
    • Replaced 3 or 4 odds and ends sensors. I don't like ANY check engine lights on in my cars, and I felt like every 6-8 months I was doing something to the car.
    The Good
    • Tons of room. We are in our 30's and chauffeur around a lot. Almost everyone commented on how comfy and spacious the car was, especially the back seats.
    • Reasonably reliable - I kept it in tiptop mechanical shape, but I did feel like I was always doing something to it.
    • Although it was kind-of a 'Mommy car' I thought it looked good in comparisson to other vehicles in the price range
    The Bad
    • The Ecotech 4 bangers have a reputation for using/burning oil. Look it up. There are tons of forums discussing this and Chevrolet says 'it's normal'. I've heard of BMW saying similar things...and maybe it is...but a quart a month seems excessive to me. Sometimes it was more. Worst part about it...the low oil light does not come on. When we purchased the Equinox I passed on 2 or 3 models, because of how chattery the motors were in the cars. I finally found the one we purchased, and I bought it because it was more quiet than the others I looked at (70k when I bought ours). Around 90k miles, the motor started getting very chattery. Right around here I took it to the dealership (still under 5 year/100k warranty WOOHOO!) and got the timing chain and tensioner replaced. It was a little quieter but not as quiet as before. From then until we sold the vehicle, every time we changed the oil it would get a little quieter, but it never got back to where it was when we bought it. Around 120k miles, we finally realized the Equinox was using oil. We park in the same spot in the driveway, and there was never any leaks...so I really never considered it. Also, no 'Low Oil' light came on. Anyway, it started getting extremely chattery around 134k miles again. Worse than normal. Parked it and did the timing chain myself with some friends. See here for short video clip. Guide Rails and tensioner were shattered completely. I replaced with nylon instead of plastic that the Chevrolet dealership used. We sold it at 158k miles, and every 1-2k miles or once a month I would have to add about a quart of oil.
    • The fit and finish is modern day Chevrolet quality. Lots of plastic and feels cheap. The tech also looks/feels a little outdated.
    • It was dog shit slow...and loud because of the little motor. In drive thru's, you could hear it bouncing off the wall just idling. The acceleration was what you would expect...but maybe it was worse because of how 'Go-Kart-y' it sounded. Seriously, take a listen anytime you are next to an Equinox. I bet it sounds like a go kart. I started noticing it all the time walking into grocery stores and whatnot when I would hear one idling.
    All in all, we were in the market for a small SUV under 30k and landed on the Hyundai Tucson. Best Warranty and Best Value that we could find. I can't speak on the Fusion. Sorry for the novel. Best of luck!
     
  6. BLUE72CAMARO

    BLUE72CAMARO Veteran Member Lifetime Gold Member

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    If you don't mind the looks the GMC Terrain is the chassis mate to the equinox. My mom has a 2016 and has had really good luck with it thus far at 120+k. The only issues that it has had was solenoid on top of the engine for phase the cam started throwing error codes, it is a common problem but an easy fix, I did it in 20 minutes. It also had an electrical issue which turned out to be a squirrel had gotten into the wiring harness under the hood and was making it do all kinds of weird crap. While I agree with the above the little ecotech is kind of loud and its not gonna set the world on fire it is not god awful slow as he makes it out to be. I have had way slower cars than it is and it is adequate power for normal driving situations and I do have a fair amount of time behind the wheel of it as I drive anytime I go anywhere with my parents and have taken my mother to my sisters 300 miles away on several occasions with it.
     
  7. AllensaurusRex

    AllensaurusRex Veteran Member

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    I agree with this. It isn't terribly slow...especially when compared to some of the 80's cars I drove (Olds cutlass A body, Dodge D100 pickup, 4.1L Cadillac Seville, etc.) I think the loudness amplifies it and gives me PTSD from my many friend's Tokyo Drift days in highschool...My wife daily drove it for 4+ years, and it always got the job done. Never any problems merging in and out of traffic.

    It is a reasonably reliable ride. I'm just a little sour based on the oil consumption issue.

    Have you looked at any of the CX-5's/CX-7's? Might also be somewhere to look...
     
  8. ol' grouch

    ol' grouch Veteran Member

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    The GF is a physical therapist and drives a LOT. She bought her latest Equinox 1.5 years ago with 14K and now has 92K on it. I'm at the point that I think I'll either go with the Fusion I looked at, if they can get the price down a bit, or just another oldie and finish paying off my debts then go back to New/Late model down the road a bit. If I can find a "Granny" car, I'll snag that. My Grand Marquis was one (well, Grandpa) and it was a great car until it got totaled.
     
  9. 1980RS

    1980RS Veteran Member

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    Back in 2015 I got my son a Hyundai Sonata, why? because you don't have to work on them all the time. I worked at Hyundai for 5 years and in that time the newer stuff is made pretty good. I look at it this way, he has not had to take it to the dealer for any work except for a vibration noise that I ended up fixing. He just got a recall for the engine bearing problem as Hyundai extended it to his model year with a 10 year and 120K warranty, pretty good for Hyundai to do this if you ask me. Look at all the LS engines that knock, burn oil and the AFM problems, does GM take care of that? no f-ing way. That's why my son drives a Hyundai. Out of all the cars I have worked on for the last 30 years Hyundai's are the only ones I do not have to puts with all the time. Oil change and rotates with a couple of filters tossed in. That's it.
     
    jeff swisher likes this.
  10. gramps

    gramps Veteran Member

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    Have you thought about the Ford Edge? We just picked one up back in August. Wife loves the thing, and I think it’s pretty nice. I don’t see many parts requests for them that’s out of the normal maintenance/wear items list. We picked up a nice AWD 3.5L v6 with leather etc. Has a pretty decent amount of room, decent power, reasonable fuel economy. Doesn’t feel like a shitbox tin can, and it not huge either.
     

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