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BoxheadCougarTim
BoxheadCougarTim MegaDork
12/14/17 11:38 p.m.

Yeah, I know, not me asking about that E36 M3 again...

Well, my wife's been hinting that she's getting more concerned with essentially my lack of winter prep (Mini's got a set of snow tires, that's it). With the amount of travel I'm doing by car, she seems to be worried that I'm planning to take part in a Donner Party or something (yeah, I know, tasteless joke). Given my well known dislike of SUVs, she's been trying to get me to consider ideally a sporty four door with AWD, and a warranty. And an automatic, so she can drive it - plus with the Achilles Tendon Injury from Heck, I'm better off using an automatic at the moment, too.

Yes, my wife's quite good at enabling car purchases...

Anyway, for various reasons I don't want a BMW, Audi or Mercedes. Subaru WRXen are only available with a CVT, so that's a big Nope, too. I'd really want something like the Evo X I used to own, only with ergonomics that work for me (which rules out picking up one of the few remaining brand-new Evo X MRs).

What I've found so far:

  • Alfa Giulia Ti
  • VW Golf R (not a VW fan, but it ticks the boxes)
  • Dodge Challenger - I don't like the looks of the Charger, and both are only available with V6 + AWD. V6 in a Challenger somehow feels wrong. Me want Hemi.
  • Kia Stinger - not sure how that would go down at home
  • Mini Cooper Clubman - I like the looks of it, but I had no problem configuring it so it ended up more expensive than the Giulia without excessive options (Ok, maybe I shouldn't have picked the JCW as the base)
  • Used GT-R, but that violates the "has manufacturer's warranty" rule, plus according to my mechanic who looks after several of them, they are needy beasts.
  • 996 Turbo, they're a bit short on the door and the warranty front, but my wife loved driving the 996 we had
  • My wife likes the looks of the Cadillac ATS even less than she likes the looks of the Giulia, so that one is out, too.
  • Lexus IS and whatever the rival Infinti is called leave me cold.
  • Volvos also got vetoed.
  • If Mazda made an AWD Mazda 6, I'd very much consider that but given that they don't, well, I can't.

Other than a 996TT, we'd probably be looking at a 36 month lease as that would fit our current plans better than a purchase, and the FCA products have extremely attractive lease rates if the dealer is willing to play ball. The Golf would be nearly twice as expensive per month to lease, the Clubman is also pretty expensive, the Stinger less so but I have trouble getting my head around the "Kia M car rival" concept. Plus I think it's even less easy on the eye than most of the other choices.

Any other well kept secrets I have overlooked?

Is this guy ever getting to the point? Well, I'm trying...

The regular car press seems to rave about the Giulia TI, has anybody here had a chance to drive one? I seem to recall that GRM had mixed feelings about the Quadrofoglio Verde, but that would be out of the question for me anyway.

For me, with the right option pack, it seems to tick all the boxes for what I like about sporty cars, plus it's Italian and I haven't had an Alfa for 15 years, so I have either withdrawal symptoms or a bad case of the rose tinted glasses.

szeis4cookie
szeis4cookie Dork
12/15/17 6:02 a.m.

Infiniti G35/37/whatever they're called now with the Q have AWD available, so maybe check those out.

 

Also, a little bigger than your other points of comparison, but Taurus SHO/Ecoboost Lincoln MKS?  The Fusion Sport/Lincoln MKZ also has AWD, which would be closer to the size you're looking for.

Duke
Duke MegaDork
12/15/17 8:10 a.m.

This thread is relevant to my interests.  Giulia Ti is high on my list for purchase in a few years.

What Volvo did you drive?  We've only had it a couple months, but we love DW's new S60 T5 AWD.  It's perfect for what we need it to do.

759NRNG
759NRNG Dork
12/15/17 8:16 a.m.

GUILIA TI    DO     IT     NOW!!!!

So the hive can hear first hand from a real enthusiast what it's like to own/drive this sweet piece

White please   wink

BoxheadCougarTim
BoxheadCougarTim MegaDork
12/15/17 10:16 a.m.
szeis4cookie said:

Infiniti G35/37/whatever they're called now with the Q have AWD available, so maybe check those out.

They don't do anything for me unfortunately.

Also, a little bigger than your other points of comparison, but Taurus SHO/Ecoboost Lincoln MKS?  The Fusion Sport/Lincoln MKZ also has AWD, which would be closer to the size you're looking for.

I just priced up an AWD MKZ and was pleasantly surprised. Mind you, that's the much smaller hurdle compared to trying to convince my wife that we're now "old enough" to drive the sort of cars our parents would drive .

Duke said:

This thread is relevant to my interests.  Giulia Ti is high on my list for purchase in a few years.

What Volvo did you drive?  We've only had it a couple months, but we love DW's new S60 T5 AWD.  It's perfect for what we need it to do.

The S60 would be pretty much the only contender. I haven't driven one yet - I basically need to whittle down the list of cars to check out first as I have zero time to go car shopping in the first place.

BoxheadCougarTim
BoxheadCougarTim MegaDork
12/15/17 10:20 a.m.
759NRNG said:

GUILIA TI    DO     IT     NOW!!!!

So the hive can hear first hand from a real enthusiast what it's like to own/drive this sweet piece

You have an odd way of spelling "gullible idiot", given that I'm notorious for taking a car into the shop and getting a "hmmm, I've never seen that part fail". But hey, I'll take enthusiast .

White please   wink

Oddly enough, white with red interior is on my want list.

docwyte
docwyte SuperDork
12/15/17 10:50 a.m.

Given your luck with cars and the Alfas reputation for being a total $hit box, STAY AWAY!  Seriously.  Every car magazine that's tested the Guilia has had serious reliability issues with it.

996 Turbo for the win here.  That car is built like a tank, extremely reliable, very comfortable and you won't lose any money on it.  Tiptronics are CHEAP!  Mostly because nobody wants one, but that works in your favor here....

STM317
STM317 Dork
12/15/17 11:03 a.m.

 Does your wife feel the same about the caddy CTS as she does about the ATS?

Pete Gossett
Pete Gossett MegaDork
12/15/17 11:11 a.m.

In reply to BoxheadCougarTim :

Jaguar F-Type AWD?

Duke
Duke MegaDork
12/15/17 11:28 a.m.
BoxheadCougarTim said:
Duke said:

What Volvo did you drive?  We've only had it a couple months, but we love DW's new S60 T5 AWD.  It's perfect for what we need it to do.

The S60 would be pretty much the only contender. I haven't driven one yet - I basically need to whittle down the list of cars to check out first as I have zero time to go car shopping in the first place.

No one will ever mistake it for a 996T, but it's very nice to drive and ride in.  We have an Inscription Platinum, which is the loaded LWB model.  If I were you I'd look into the Dynamic R-Design, which is the sportier, more powerful trim of the SWB version.  Or you could go full Polestar.

BoxheadCougarTim
BoxheadCougarTim MegaDork
12/15/17 11:52 a.m.
docwyte said:

Given your luck with cars and the Alfas reputation for being a total $hit box, STAY AWAY!  Seriously.  Every car magazine that's tested the Guilia has had serious reliability issues with it.

I've read they had issues with the Quadrofolgio, did those extend to the Ti as well?

996 Turbo for the win here.  That car is built like a tank, extremely reliable, very comfortable and you won't lose any money on it.  Tiptronics are CHEAP!  Mostly because nobody wants one, but that works in your favor here....

Well, cheap is relative (we're still talking $40k here, at least on the Left Coast). But yes, I hear you. 996TT is at the top of the list for "buy", even though the current preference is "lease".

 

STM317 said:

 Does your wife feel the same about the caddy CTS as she does about the ATS?


Very much yes, and I also think the CTS comes in above budget.

Pete Gossett said:

In reply to BoxheadCougarTim :

Jaguar F-Type AWD?

That would be spectacular if I could make that work from a budget perspective, but they're way out of budget - the Giulia Ti's I was looking at come in at $40k-$45k MSRP before discounts and incentives and that's more or less the max budget.

turtl631
turtl631 Reader
12/15/17 11:57 a.m.

Golf R is a nice package with a sweet trans, but they don't lease well.  The Giulia seemed pretty unreliable based on initial reviews, are they holding up okay in the real world?

BoxheadCougarTim
BoxheadCougarTim MegaDork
12/15/17 11:59 a.m.

I did notice that about the Golf R. And yes, they look like they are a sweet package.

akylekoz
akylekoz HalfDork
12/15/17 12:22 p.m.

My daughter gets her Stelvio soon, hope to hoon on it over X-mas.  It's basically a Giulia suv right. 

Really sad story she had to turn in her Charger but it needed paint correction first.  Instead of just giving up the Stelvio, they made her drive a Challenger GT AWD until the Charger can get turned in.  Poor girl.

The buy back on the 2016 Charger with 50 or 55k was $19k.  

STM317
STM317 Dork
12/15/17 2:09 p.m.
BoxheadCougarTim said:
STM317 said:

 Does your wife feel the same about the caddy CTS as she does about the ATS?


Very much yes, and I also think the CTS comes in above budget.

I was thinking gently used, where AWD examples with under 30k miles can be found for mid 20s all day. But it sounds like it's a non-starter.

coexist
coexist Reader
12/15/17 2:15 p.m.

Not many better choices than a Guilia TI

Ransom
Ransom PowerDork
12/15/17 2:20 p.m.

Based on a few around-town trips in a rental Clubman, the Mini automatic is *horrible*. I'm amazed at how much I can dislike what is otherwise so similar to my Hardtop daily...

It's funny that the same service offers a 328i, whose auto I found revelatory and made me think I could actually enjoy a car with an automatic.

fanfoy
fanfoy Dork
12/15/17 3:01 p.m.
Pete Gossett said:

In reply to BoxheadCougarTim :

Jaguar F-Type AWD?

Saw one in the snow this week. It was dirty and awesome. Looked fun!

BoxheadCougarTim
BoxheadCougarTim MegaDork
12/15/17 3:05 p.m.
coexist said:

Not many better choices than a Guilia TI

I'd buy one of those with AWD

Pete Gossett
Pete Gossett MegaDork
12/15/17 3:13 p.m.

In reply to BoxheadCougarTim :

I had no idea what the F-Type was priced at, but I remember seeing low lease rates on them when they were introduced. 

BoxheadCougarTim
BoxheadCougarTim MegaDork
12/15/17 3:23 p.m.

In reply to Pete Gossett :

I may have to look again specifically for the lease cost, but base price is $60k compared to the $40k of a Giulia Ti.

sevenracer
sevenracer Reader
12/15/17 5:15 p.m.

Arent the lease rates going to be brutal with all the miles you are putting on?

dannyzabolotny
dannyzabolotny Reader
12/15/17 5:24 p.m.

996T, how is that even a question? They're built very well, are insanely quick, and they've actually been going up in price rather than just depreciating like almost every other old German car. And they're super easy to find in automatic form, whereas the manuals are much more coveted.

thatsnowinnebago
thatsnowinnebago SuperDork
12/15/17 7:28 p.m.
Ransom said:

Based on a few around-town trips in a rental Clubman, the Mini automatic is *horrible*. I'm amazed at how much I can dislike what is otherwise so similar to my Hardtop daily...

It's funny that the same service offers a 328i, whose auto I found revelatory and made me think I could actually enjoy a car with an automatic.

ReachNow I assume? Putting the Minis in sport mode makes the transmission less hateful. Not good mind you, just not as bad. 

GTwannaB
GTwannaB HalfDork
12/15/17 9:12 p.m.

Fusion Sport is 350+ hp awd right? Not a fancy nameplate but nicer than you might think  

autoweek has a really good review of the AWD supercharged Jaguar XE

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