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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey guys. The fiance and I are going to start looking at places around the end of the year and as orange county is insanely expensive we will likely be looking in the Corona area. She works in Lake Forest and I work in Irvine, but I often go out to Torrance, Burbank, and other sites as I am a construction manager. For those not familiar with So Cal that is about 25-30 miles one way and with traffic about 1-1.5 hours each way. Now my fiance can take the train and her work will reimburse her, but I would look into getting a used car as a commuter. I would like to not rack up tons of miles on the ST if possible.

Some days I will easily drive over 100 miles and while my work reimburses me for mileage; the ware and tear plus long traffic driving would suck in the ST.

What car or cars would you recommend that I could by used for around $7k, gets good gas mileage, and is reliable? My first thought was a Honda Fit. I have a few friends who have had them or still do and they love them. Super reliable, pretty good MPG, and can easily be found for $7k.

Thoughts? My other option would most likely mean selling the ST which I don't want to do.
 

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Hey guys. The fiance and I are going to start looking at places around the end of the year and as orange county is insanely expensive we will likely be looking in the Corona area. She works in Lake Forest and I work in Irvine, but I often go out to Torrance, Burbank, and other sites as I am a construction manager. For those not familiar with So Cal that is about 25-30 miles one way and with traffic about 1-1.5 hours each way. Now my fiance can take the train and her work will reimburse her, but I would look into getting a used car as a commuter. I would like to not rack up tons of miles on the ST if possible.

Some days I will easily drive over 100 miles and while my work reimburses me for mileage; the ware and tear plus long traffic driving would suck in the ST.

What car or cars would you recommend that I could by used for around $7k, gets good gas mileage, and is reliable? My first thought was a Honda Fit. I have a few friends who have had them or still do and they love them. Super reliable, pretty good MPG, and can easily be found for $7k.

Thoughts? My other option would most likely mean selling the ST which I don't want to do.
2010-ish Honda Civic? Or maybe Toyota Corolla. Easy drivers that handle heavy mileage and get great MPG. Both should be 5-7k at the most in average condition.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
2010-ish Honda Civic? Or maybe Toyota Corolla. Easy drivers that handle heavy mileage and get great MPG. Both should be 5-7k at the most in average condition.
I would probably prefer the Civic. The corolla is a great car, but extremely boring to me (The fiance has one haha).
 
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I would probably prefer the Civic. The corolla is a great car, but extremely boring to me (The fiance has one haha).
That's true, they are quite boring. They last basically forever though those little Toyotas. So does the Civic though, just don't get the Si and get overwhelmed with the insane power of the vTech yo.
 
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+1 on that. 8th gen civic LX with the 1.8. They will go forever
Yup exactly this ^ I hate Civics as much as the next guy but if I wanted a solid used commuter that shouldn't die with regular oil changes and proper tire pressure...Honda Civic.
 

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Or get a Yaris. I had one as a rental when my car got smashed. I drove the crap out of that thing. Believe it or not it handled like a go kart and was fun to drive.

 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Haha I just don't know if I can get out of the mindset that the Yaris and Corolla is kind of a...chic car...

I can't fault the Toyota motor or Honda for lasting forever. My dad is driving my Element that I had and its around 200k. That thing runs like a champ.
 
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Why not get a used Focus SE with a stick?

We got one for my daughter to commute to school. It's pretty zippy and gets good mileage. Lots of common parts with the ST too (filters for one). Ford parts as you probably know are a lot less expensive than many Japanese and German car parts...

I drove a new 2013 SE with a stick prior to buying my 2013 ST new. There were no ST's available to drive so I wanted to drive a stick Focus before committing to the ST without a test drive. It was better than I expected. And to be clear, the ST is the first domestic car I've ever owned; I've always had German or Japanese cars (and one French car...)

Hope that helps,
Mark
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Why not get a used Focus SE with a stick?

We got one for my daughter to commute to school. It's pretty zippy and gets good mileage. Lots of common parts with the ST too (filters for one). Ford parts as you probably know are a lot less expensive than many Japanese and German car parts...

I drove a new 2013 SE with a stick prior to buying my 2013 ST new. There were no ST's available to drive so I wanted to drive a stick Focus before committing to the ST without a test drive. It was better than I expected. And to be clear, the ST is the first domestic car I've ever owned; I've always had German or Japanese cars (and one French car...)

Hope that helps,
Mark
It is worth a thought, but the ST is literally the only reason why I am driving an American Car. I personally think that Honda an Toyota offer cars that are better suited for commuting high mileage and having minimal issues. I would also prefer to have something different than what I am currently driving. Thank you though.
 
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Just spend 2grand or 2500 bucks on a mid 2000s camry 4cyl. They love to rack up miles and get great MPG
 

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Just spend 2grand or 2500 bucks on a mid 2000s camry 4cyl. They love to rack up miles and get great MPG
^ This

If you're just commuting, go cushy mid 2000s Japanese. Why listen to a bunch of wind and tire noise in a Civic if you don't have to? An '05 Accord is about as close as you can get to a perpetual energy machine.

Oh and upgrade the sound system fo sho.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
^ This

If you're just commuting, go cushy mid 2000s Japanese. Why listen to a bunch of wind and tire noise in a Civic if you don't have to? An '05 Accord is about as close as you can get to a perpetual energy machine.

Oh and upgrade the sound system fo sho.
Not a bad recommendation. I like Honda's because they look better IMHO and I secretly want a Fit, Civic, or an Accord to put an exhaust on haha. Assuming this all goes to plan I will look at Camry and Corollas as well.
 

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Commuting? In CA? Motorcycle every day.
Solid point here, with exception to rain or work related negatives (business attire or parking or something) it's a good cheap option.
 

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You should get yourself a 1999-2000 Civic si EM1 or a 1989 CRX si. The CRX is sweet. Also, if you get a 7th gen civc es1/es2/em2 they get great mileage. My 2004 automatic 4 speed got 30 and the 5 speed manual would boast 40ish on pure highway trips for some. You can get one for less than 5k easy and it's a Honda so it's not like it's expensive to fix.
 

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You should get yourself a 1999-2000 Civic si EM1 or a 1989 CRX si. The CRX is sweet. Also, if you get a 7th gen civc es1/es2/em2 they get great mileage. My 2004 automatic 4 speed got 30 and the 5 speed manual would boast 40ish on pure highway trips for some. You can get one for less than 5k easy and it's a Honda so it's not like it's expensive to fix.
For what he wants I'd go 8th gen LX over a 6th gen SI for sure. Less chance it was beat on and I think it just suits the task more. Plus it's newer and less aged with probably fewer miles and less likely to be neglected for a long time like the other option. Cheaper I'm sure but might not last nearly as long or have the better creature comforts.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
For what he wants I'd go 8th gen LX over a 6th gen SI for sure. Less chance it was beat on and I think it just suits the task more. Plus it's newer and less aged with probably fewer miles and less likely to be neglected for a long time like the other option. Cheaper I'm sure but might not last nearly as long or have the better creature comforts.
I would probably look at the the mid 2000's and up. A motor cycle is a great idea except I wear slacks and a dress shirt to work and I do not trust SoCal drivers with my life that much. The occasional rain or cold would not be ideal either.
 
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I would probably look at the the mid 2000's and up. A motor cycle is a great idea except I wear slacks and a dress shirt to work and I do not trust SoCal drivers with my life that much. The occasional rain or cold would not be ideal either.
I don't ride to work for this reason. Khakis and polo shirt to work, and khakis (from experience) show bugs REALLY BAD. So only on perfect weather casual Fridays will I ride some times.
 
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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
I don't ride to work for this reason. Khakis and polo shirt to work, and khakis (from experience) show bugs REALLY BAD. So only on perfect weather casual Fridays will I ride some times.
haha I have been wanting a bike for quite some time, but commuting from Corona to Irvine, Burbank, Torrance and back would not be fun. I will get a beater if we end up out in the IE.
 
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