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Roadster/Small RWD Market/Other Vehicle General Discussion Discussion about owning, loving, lusting, or coveting roadsters and other small RWD'rs and "other" general vehicle discussion. Competitive vehicles, other "cool drives" and other discussion related to the ownership experience.

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Old 02-11-2013, 11:00 AM   #1 (permalink)
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2004 XC90 vs. MDX vs. Touareg vs. Explorer

Looking to buy a suv as my 2nd car so i can haul kid stuff and be able to drive in the snow. The wife's 2012 grand cherokee is the main family car so this suv would be my secondary car and would probably put no more than 5-7K miles a year.

The first 3 i can get for around $10K with less than 100K miles on it and the Explorer is about the $8K ballpark.

Having never owned any of these before, which is better consider its age?

based on some research the MDX appeared to get very good reviews and complete opposite for the Explorer. Are Fords THAT bad? Don't see many VW's on the road, so not sure if there's a major reason behind that and afraid of Volvo having expensive repairs, but love the cars.

=
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Old 02-11-2013, 01:14 PM   #2 (permalink)
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If your thinking about snow, you might as well make sure it's 4x4.


Edit: explorer is also known as exploder. Avoid. First hand knowledge of a '92.
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Old 02-11-2013, 01:54 PM   #3 (permalink)
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yea all those are 4x4, which is very handy in the northeast.
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Old 02-11-2013, 02:23 PM   #4 (permalink)
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MDX's have had transmission problems.
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Old 02-11-2013, 02:25 PM   #5 (permalink)
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The blazer/Trailblazer is a pretty decent pick at that price IMO
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Old 02-11-2013, 04:23 PM   #6 (permalink)
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a '04 Pilot 4x4 is also in that same price range and under 100K miles. As much as i hate to admit it that may be the best option for longer term durability. There's also the Highlander/4 runner but in my limited experience driving Toyota's i find them excruciatingly boring, so haven't considered them much yet.
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Old 02-11-2013, 06:44 PM   #7 (permalink)
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You don't want a VW with 100K miles on it. I just financed a 2004 Explorer 4X4 for my best friend. Real nice truck. 105K miles, under 7 thousand dollars. I know a girl with a 91 that has 311K miles on a 91 with the original drivetrain.

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Old 02-11-2013, 09:59 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Vroompsh View Post
MDX's have had transmission problems.
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The blazer/Trailblazer is a pretty decent pick at that price IMO
I have been looking for a '91 S-10 blazer. The one i had back in the day rocked ass. Grabbers for winter i could get anywhere.
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Old 02-12-2013, 01:21 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Why not stay Saturn with it?

The Vue with its AWD I hear is pretty good. A friend of mine picked one up for a winter DD and has been loving it. My GF is already planning on dailying a Vue RL as soon as we decide to get the cash together lol.
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Old 02-12-2013, 09:07 AM   #10 (permalink)
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The Explorer had some issues, especially in the first year of that generation 2002. Going to a 2004-2005 they are much more reliable.
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Old 02-12-2013, 09:49 AM   #11 (permalink)
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The only thing i have to say about the ford explorer is, cash for clunkers, it was the number one trade in if you break down the list of top 10mounting by modle and year it went like this
1..98
2..97
3..96
4..99
5 and 6 went to Cherokees
7..95
8..94.
9 was a windstar
forgot ten but you get the point 6 out of 10 were explores
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Old 02-12-2013, 09:52 AM   #12 (permalink)
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I guess you could look at it another way, they were still on the road
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Old 02-12-2013, 05:53 PM   #13 (permalink)
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Why not stay Saturn with it?

The Vue with its AWD I hear is pretty good. A friend of mine picked one up for a winter DD and has been loving it. My GF is already planning on dailying a Vue RL as soon as we decide to get the cash together lol.
yea, thought about it too, but kind of liked the idea of having the 3rd row in the SUV's i mentioned being the Jeep doesn't have it.
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Old 02-13-2013, 10:41 AM   #14 (permalink)
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Every car has issues. Just make sure the vehicle you are interested in is sound mechanically when you buy it. You won't be putting many miles on it to really matter IMO.
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Old 02-15-2013, 08:25 PM   #15 (permalink)
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Every car has issues. Just make sure the vehicle you are interested in is sound mechanically when you buy it. You won't be putting many miles on it to really matter IMO.
truth

Carfax it, and test drive it to a mechanic that you TRUST.

Here's what I can share that relates to what's been listed...

--

We had/have an 99 Expedition and it has held up way better than I thought it would when we test drove it. I was leery of it because of how loose it felt and some odd noises that the drive train when I was testing out the steering. But... it had huge amounts of room so we went with it knowing that I had repair help nearby (brother-in-law) if needed.

It is GREAT in the snow. I have General Grabbers on it and they do nearly as well as the Michelin LTX-2 tires we have on the Tundra (that are twice the price).

The suspension is extremely sluggish, but it's old and heavy, and I've never been annoyed enough by it to want to drop the 2-3K into upgrading it.

Fuel economy... it's a backup vehicle so it never really mattered enough to track. Not much different than the Tundra tho... high teens, low 20s?

--

My father in law has a late 90's early 2000s Blazer. That thing is a piece of crap. (it is why I say had/have the expy... they're using it now cause the Blazer is on its last leg)

One of my friends back in FL had a Blazer... He rolled it and it burst into flames fast enough that the first responders told him he was the one-in-a-hundred lucky enough to have been ejected from the vehicle!

I've heard many good things about Chevy trucks though... My uncle, a contractor, maintains a small fleet of trucks and is almost exclusively Chevy with occasional Fords... 100+ Chevys through the years and he still swears by them.

--

Toyota...

Heh... I can't say enough good about our Tundra! She really thinks she is a sports car trapped in a truck body. Best road handling truck I have ever driven. Very little off road use, but she's amazing in the snow with a little extra weight in the bed. Tons of ROOM inside the Crewmax cab. Tons of POWER. (6.2 0-60)

Not sure about the Toyotas you mentioned but the Tundra isn't boring.

No love with the extra row of seats though. :/ The Seqouias(sp?) I have driven/ridden in are nowhere near as fun as the Tundra. They just have too much weight for even that massive V8.

--

The VW may be a safe bet. I haven't heard too much about massive lemon VW's. The reviews usually range from pretty good to "ok"/average (never see many “great” or "amazing"). (shrugs)

When we test drove 06-08 AWD sedans (Passat, E series, 5 series, Lexus)... the Passat held it's own on handling, had the best power, but was not as comfy as the others.

No idea if that carries over to their SUV though :/

----

A few questions for ya...

Will you ever need to tow with the vehicle?

Have you test drove the vehicles you listed?

Are you in or near a big metro area with a Carmax or other large dealers where you could test drive the different options?
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Last edited by Nova-Exarch; 02-15-2013 at 08:37 PM.
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