Q: I still drive my trusty 2006 Honda Civic. It has 330,000 km thanks to rigorous maintenance. I have to resign myself to changing it sooner or later. I am semi-retired. In winter, I travel every weekend between Montérégie and the Hautes-Laurentides and I do around 30,000 km a year. Being more and more fearful, I’m looking for a reliable used car with good road holding. For a green turn, I expect the offer to be more diversified and accessible. I look at the Honda HR-V, Subaru Crosstrek and Mazda CX-30. I love manual transmissions. Which of these models do you think meets my criteria?
A: Congratulations! You bring another proof of the benefits of a rigorous and followed maintenance. Well, if the manual transmission is among your most sought-after criteria, the answer is simple: Subaru Crosstrek. Honda offered such a transmission until 2019, but you should know that it did not come with the version equipped with all-wheel drive (four-wheel drive), only the one that was towed (front-wheel drive). That said, the HR-V is a very good buy. It is a reliable and consistent vehicle that excels in nothing, but shines in everything. This model will however be less comfortable than the CX-30, less rewarding too (quality of materials and finish). The Crosstrek, on the other hand, is between the two and therefore represents the best compromise in terms of reliability, pleasure and versatility that you are looking for.
Q: I am looking for a multipurpose vehicle. I thought of the Nissan Kicks, which seems economical to me, with an affordable price. Do you have any other suggestions?
A: The Kicks is an honest proposition and offered at an attractive price if you stop at the basic version (S). If you fall for the SV or SR versions, there are other vehicles with superior attributes (driving, warranty, comfort, etc.) that you should consider, such as the Kia Seltos and the Chevrolet Trailblazer. But before going any further, it is important to clearly establish your needs. A sedan, less expensive still, but offering the versatility of a hatchback body, is also likely to suit your needs.
Wait or not?
Q: I am considering buying a new car. I currently have a 2004 Toyota Sienna and would like to replace it with a Subaru Forester. As you can see, I keep my vehicles for a very long time. Would it be better to wait until 2024? I learned that this model will be retouched.
A: You’re right, the Forester will get a complete overhaul. Since you keep your vehicles for a very long time (the reliability factor is therefore essential), why not offer yourself this model before its overhaul? In its current form, the Forester has reached its final stage of development.
Not an investment
Q: Seven years ago I bought a 2005 Volvo S40 AWD. I love this car, it only has 190,000 km on the clock (which is relatively low for a Volvo). Unfortunately, she is starting to show the signs of her age. Considering that I like this car, but it no longer has the reliability that would allow us to take it for long rides, should I keep it until the end of its useful life, which is always the solution the most ecological? I could probably spend $5000 on it to have it “refurbished”. My mechanic tells me that it is still good, but that the pace of repairs will be accelerating. He is not convinced that an investment of this type is the best choice. And then I want to go electric as soon as model availability returns to some semblance of normality. Would my $5,000 be better invested in a new vehicle? Or in a used vehicle, but much newer?
A: Let’s agree on one thing, a vehicle is not an investment. Yes, I know there are exceptions, but the S40 is not one of them. Your garage has good advice. Better to sell your vehicle and offer yourself a reliable and more recent used. By doing so, you will be able to register with a dealer of your choice to acquire the electric vehicle of your dreams in the years to come.