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  Reply # 1715437 4-Feb-2017 16:29
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mattwnz: I would check on the CVT reliability for the model and brand you are looking at. What do you dislike about autos, vs CVTs? I like 6 speed autos that have manual override with paddle shifters, as you can almost drive it like a manual.


For the Holden Spark CVT, its a Jatco CVT7 box, and the same gearbox is fitted in other small cars, Mitsubishi Mirage being one, can't remember the rest but their is quite a few. I'm no mechanic but my understanding was older CVTs could be problematic due to the belts, but belt materials are better now. Something about the limit of power that a CVT belt can handle as well. I've read CVTs have potential to be excellent in terms of performance and reliability but Joe Public doesn't like that "slipping" feeling of CVT ramping up RPM, so CVTs like the Jatco have an actually auxiliary gearbox inside the unit (Hi/Low) which gives the trans a stepped feeling as if its changing gears as its accelerating. I guess this adds cost/complexity, and I'd rather not have it.

I'm unsure what CVT gearbox the Suzuki has, I'd love to know though. Not sure if its their own unit or maybe its even a Jatco?

As for why I don't like autos, when I say autos, I mean as in regular 4 speed autos (not tiptronic, they are fine as gears can be manually selected and held)... its because they drive me crazy on hills and/or windy roads when they can't make up their mind what gear they want to be in. For example, heading up a hill, its screaming in 2nd, so it drops to 3rd, but thats too tall so car bogs and loses speed, so it kicks down to 2nd, then its screaming, so it changes back to 3rd, and so on. I've only owned one auto which hasn't behaved like this and thats a Falcon because it had a large 4 litre engine so it had enough torque not to need to play gearbox silly buggers.

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  Reply # 1718508 10-Feb-2017 22:55
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I've been looking at small cars too.  Here is a list of 4 door small car models ordered by length (shortest to longest).  Not all are sold here. You can see the new mazda 2's are actually quite long.  It's a shame that VW Up! / Toyota Aygo / Hyundai i10 are not sold here, because one of those would be ideal for city parking.  There are a lot of japanese "kei cars" that are 3395 and are all about 650cc engines, but they don't get sold here because they are so small and smaller cars tend to have lower safety ratings.

 

Toyota iQ (2dr)
Length 2985

 

Suzuki Alto (HA25) 2009-2014
Length 3395

 

Toyota Aygo
3475

 

Peugeot iON/Mitsibishi i-MiEV/Citroen C-Zero
3480

 

Smart ForFour
3495

 

VW Up!
3540

 

Skoda Citigo
Length 3563

 

Hyundai i10 2007-2014
Length 3565

Holden Spark
3595

 

Kia Picanto (2dr)
3595

 

Renault Twingo
3595

 

Suzuki Celerio
3600

 

Hyundai i10 2013+
Length 3645 (3765 Grand 10)

 

Suzuki Swift 2004-2010
Length 3695

 

Toyota Yaris (Vitz) 2005-2008
3750

 

Nissan Micra 2011-2017
Length 3780

Toyota Yaris 2008-2010
3785

 

Suzuki Swift 2010+
Length 3850

 

Toyota Yaris 2012+
Length 3885

 

Mazda 2 2007-2014
Length 3895

 

Ford Figo/Kia 2015+
Length 3886

Honda Fit
3985 (2009-11)
4100 (2012-13)
3955 (2013+)

 

Hyundai i20
Length 3995

 

Mazda 2 2014+
Length 4060





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  Reply # 1718548 11-Feb-2017 08:57
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I looked at a Mazda 2. I like the shape from the front of the bonnet and grill, kinda reminds me of the RX-8 I had. Inside it looked nice, I like the round plane style air vents, dash, seats, but yeah as you say the car seemed "big" I now see that's because it's nearly half a metre longer and it shows. I like the 2s innovative features like i-eloop, stop start, skyactive features of transmission and engine. However i do wonder about long term increased cost of ownership.

I've since found out the Suzuki Celerio has a Jatco CVT7. Yes it is Nissan, Mitsubishi, and Suzuki all joint owners and Holden use the transmissions in the Spark too.

Someone mentioned Mitsubishi Mirage as an option, back in 2013 when either they first came out again or when local dealer first got one, I was cashed up and serious about buying one. I really liked the way they look. However I read reviews online, YouTube reviews, including Top Gear, and it was unanimous that they were an abysmal car, and reading endless negative comments I went and bought 2 new motorbikes instead.

Last year they did a facelift on the mirage and I did some reading into changes in the facelift and read recent reviews, it seems Mitsubishi listen to the bad flak and addressed all the problems and shortcomings.

So I think where I'm at now is if I go manual it'll be a Celerio, but at $17.5k for CVT vs $18k for Mirage, I'd get the Mirage. To help the decision along, Suzuki put the price up on manual $750, so it's $16k now. Mitsubishi has extended their 1/3 + 1/3 + 1/3 offer until end of March, even though I wouldn't need finance, their offer is interest free with only a very small booking fee so why not.

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  Reply # 1726341 26-Feb-2017 08:50
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I'm looking into a new small car. Did you make a purchase? If so, what did you get? How is it?





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  Reply # 1726373 26-Feb-2017 09:31
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Dulouz:

 

I'm looking into a new small car. Did you make a purchase? If so, what did you get? How is it?

 

 

I my opinion, there is only one practical small car to buy. Honda Jazz. But I haven't been looking at small cars for a while now ...


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  Reply # 1726419 26-Feb-2017 10:47
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Id look at suzuki ignis / honda spark / suzuki swift if going small. If wanting bigger then toyota yaris or honda jazz.




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  Reply # 1726432 26-Feb-2017 11:44
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I do a lot of K's in a Mazda CX-3 (open road, 1000k's at a time) and it handles it just fine.

 

If the CX-3 is built upon the Mazda 2 chassis, then I say go for it. Sports mode means it revs hard and engine brakes brilliantly when required.

 

The HOD is cool, the software driving the in-car entertainment system isn't perfect, but once you're used to it, it's fine.


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  Reply # 1726477 26-Feb-2017 13:07
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cx3 are really nice, but they are getting up there in price at ~40k.  If you are two car household i reckon the small car should be cheaper and spend more on the larger one.





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  Reply # 1726582 26-Feb-2017 16:23
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Geese: I'm looking to buy my first new car. In the sub $20K range.

.....

 

When you say "small" - what is the main criteria for choosing "small"? There are might me some different aspects e.g.:

 

- Small in length to fit the garage space or to fit into small parking space between other cars;

 

- Small because it consumes less gas;

 

- Small because the turning radius is so small - you can make U-turn on your driveway.

 

Have a look at Prius C - you can buy New Zealand new at around $20K (second hand, low mileage). Turning radius is so small you would not believe the car with the 2.5M wheel base could have. (It nearly turns on the spot). Gas consumption (mine) 4.2L/100k. 4 -door, hatchback. Prius C is smaller than usual Prius but the wheel base is the same as in 1.8 Carina ED.

 

In Japan it is known as Aqua, but what dealers are bringing here from Japan is usually high mileage. The car is the best selling hybrid in Japan.

 

 


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  Reply # 1726588 26-Feb-2017 16:32
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joker97:

 

I my opinion, there is only one practical small car to buy. Honda Jazz. But I haven't been looking at small cars for a while now ...

 

 

When I define "practical" I am looking at not only "usage" but also at "diagnostics" & "maintenance".

 

Toyota is way more diagnostic & repair-friendly vs other Japanese cars like Honda or Nissan. That means with Honda Jazz (I like the look by the way) you will be visiting dealership to check what's behind the MIL. With Toyota - you can DIY on a budget (i.e. have your own diagnostic tools handy) or drop by my side and I can quickly check what's going on.


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  Reply # 1726591 26-Feb-2017 16:44
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RUKI:

 

joker97:

 

I my opinion, there is only one practical small car to buy. Honda Jazz. But I haven't been looking at small cars for a while now ...

 

 

When I define "practical" I am looking at not only "usage" but also at "diagnostics" & "maintenance".

 

Toyota is way more diagnostic & repair-friendly vs other Japanese cars like Honda or Nissan. That means with Honda Jazz (I like the look by the way) you will be visiting dealership to check what's behind the MIL. With Toyota - you can DIY on a budget (i.e. have your own diagnostic tools handy) or drop by my side and I can quickly check what's going on.

 

 

Practical means you can actually fit people and stuff in it, not one other the other, and some small cars - neither! Whether or not the small car still moves when you've got people and stuff in it is another matter ...

 

Most of my cars have been bought for power and torque, and I then realise there's a word called drivability ...




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  Reply # 1727068 27-Feb-2017 12:56
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Dulouz:

I'm looking into a new small car. Did you make a purchase? If so, what did you get? How is it?



No not yet, I'm waiting for my house to sell, which is taking a quite unbelievably long amount of time.

Since my last post I took a new Mitsubishi Mirage for a drive.
The things that appealed probably is what might put most off. The engine is 1.2 litre compared to Celerio 1.0, and that extra 200cc made quite the difference on hills. Didn't need to rev as high to hold same speed up same hill. Engine vibrated a lot at idle (great), and was quite noisy despite sound deadening on firewall and bonnet (again good). The main thing I missed was considering both have same transmission, the mirage only had "low" (B), where Celerio also has a "sports" (S) button as well as low. I found that handy to keep revs up around town but very excessively, where mirage couldn't do that and "low" (B) revved a bit too high- but aw man did it sound good doing so.

So that experience was so good I'll definitely get the mirage.

The thing I do find interesting - when paying more attention to cars one sees, is there are Suzuki Swifts everywhere, it's not uncommon for me to pass 7 over a 4km run to town. I've only seen 2 Celerio on the road and no current model mirage on the road. That kinda tells me the swift might be a better bet long term for parts kinda like the venerable Honda civic of the 1990s.

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  Reply # 1727072 27-Feb-2017 13:02
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Geese: Engine vibrated a lot at idle (great), and was quite noisy despite sound deadening on firewall and bonnet (again good).

 

How are either of these things considered "Good"?


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  Reply # 1727074 27-Feb-2017 13:02
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Geese:

 

No not yet, I'm waiting for my house to sell, which is taking a quite unbelievably long amount of time.

Since my last post I took a new Mitsubishi Mirage for a drive.
The things that appealed probably is what might put most off. The engine is 1.2 litre compared to Celerio 1.0, and that extra 200cc made quite the difference on hills. Didn't need to rev as high to hold same speed up same hill. Engine vibrated a lot at idle (great), and was quite noisy despite sound deadening on firewall and bonnet (again good). The main thing I missed was considering both have same transmission, the mirage only had "low" (B), where Celerio also has a "sports" (S) button as well as low. I found that handy to keep revs up around town but very excessively, where mirage couldn't do that and "low" (B) revved a bit too high- but aw man did it sound good doing so.

So that experience was so good I'll definitely get the mirage.

The thing I do find interesting - when paying more attention to cars one sees, is there are Suzuki Swifts everywhere, it's not uncommon for me to pass 7 over a 4km run to town. I've only seen 2 Celerio on the road and no current model mirage on the road. That kinda tells me the swift might be a better bet long term for parts kinda like the venerable Honda civic of the 1990s.

 

Thanks - I have to say the Mirage is very tempting at the current 1/3 finance offer. Although I'm put off by the small engine size. Personally, I'm leaning towards a Mazda 2 and maybe a Swift.





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  Reply # 1727116 27-Feb-2017 14:09
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ubergeeknz:

Geese: Engine vibrated a lot at idle (great), and was quite noisy despite sound deadening on firewall and bonnet (again good).


How are either of these things considered "Good"?



Well some people I know won't drive in a car without the radio going, but I can listen to the radio anywhere and any time, but when I'm in a car paying $2 a litre to get around, I like to enjoy the experience. And by that I mean the things that make it powered by an IC engine, rather than a sterile electric experience. There will be plenty of time for that in coming years.

Before I had a moment of clarity I was going to buy a Buick, because I like that rough idle rocking and intrusiveness of engine sound. A friend has a mint example which he would sell me. But as fun as it would be to drive and how much happiness it would bring to my life, fuel use would be horrific, and reliability may be an issue long term. I'm tired of things going wrong in my life so the idea of buying a new car was to see the last of my days out in something that's not going to cause unexpected financial hardship and inconvenience (due to 10 year /160,000km warranty).

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