Behind the Wheel, Car Culture

What size car is right for you?

July 6, 2010
Corvette time!!!

Corvette time!!!

Every person carries their own personality and lifestyle. Well, the same goes for a car. With every vehicle, there’s a unique style and purpose behind it — and the size of car has a lot to do with it. If you’re considering a new car, what size should you look for? A lot depends on your lifestyle. Sports car Empty nesters spent the majority of their life lugging around the kids and have finally traded in that van — but now what? If your lifestyle is full of fun and space isn’t much of a necessity, you should try a sports car like the Chevrolet Corvette. This two-seater is known for speed and carries a distinct nostalgia. I mean, come on, it’s the American sports car! Sedan A sedan is perfect for anyone who is concerned with good gas mileage but still needs enough space to fit a family. Maybe you’ve got a more practical approach to life, but still want to arrive at work in style and class. Check out the Hyundai Genesis, which has enough room in the back for a couple kiddos and features a smooth ride. Sporty SUV A newly married couple might like a sporty ride that keeps them active. An occasional road trip to Tablerock Lake or an annual skiing trip to Colorado is where this duo is headed — and they need a vehicle with enough space to pack for adventure. If that’s you, check out the Nissan Xterra. With the ability to off-road while maintaining a practical form of transportation for daily errands, the Xterra is the perfect car for those on the go. Family car Did someone say carpool? If you’re a busy family, you need a car with a lot of space — to keep the kids happy, while accommodating all your stuff. The Nissan Murano has the ability to not only seat several kids, but offers adequate storage space for baseball gear and backpacks. While driving like a sedan, with the capabilities and room of an SUV, this vehicle beats any old school minivan. Looking for other family cars? Check out my post on 10 great family friendly vehicles. Truck If you plan on towing a trailer, hauling some lawn equipment (or other large items), or just enjoy being a little rugged, you’re going to need a truck. The Chevy Silverado is perfect for you. If need be, toss the children in the back seat, load it up and let it go! So, how many does your car currently seat? Do you wish it was bigger or smaller?
trunk storage in the Nissan Murano

trunk storage in the Nissan Murano

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  • mnaines July 13, 2010 at 7:57 pm

    Let me take a minute to offer some criticism of the automakers here. This whole gas mileage war…High gas mileage does not always mean high gas mileage. Now, if you’re getting confused, that’s okay, because automakers don’t want the customers to know the truth, and the truth is miles per tank, not miles per gallon. Here is why I say that.

    The 2010 Chevy Cobalt XFE gets 25 miles per gallon in the city and 35 miles per gallon on the highway with a 13 gallon tank. If you do the math, that factors out to 325 miles per tank in the city and 455 miles per tank on the highway.

    The 2010 Honda Civic and 2010 Kia Forte both get the same gas mileage and have the same size gas tank. 24 miles per gallon city and 36 miles per gallon highway on a 13.2 gallon tank. The math comes out to 316 miles per tank in the city and 475 miles per tank on the highway.

    Now, here’s the kicker: My 1991 Accord gets 19 miles per gallon city and 26 miles per gallon highway on a 17.2 gallon tank. The math comes out to 326.8 miles per tank in the city and 447.2 miles per tank on the highway. As you can see, my car can go 1.8 miles farther in the city than the Cobalt and 10.8 miles farther in the city than both the Civic and the Forte. The Cobalt out-ranges my car by only 7.8 miles on the highway. The Civic and the Forte out-range my car by 27.8 miles on the highway.

    Now, here’s the funny part: The 2010 four-cylinder Ford Fusion gets 22 miles per gallon city and 31 miles per gallon highway. Significantly less miles per gallon than the Cobalt, Forte, and Civic. But, the Fusion has a 17.5 gallon tank. The math comes out to 385 miles per tank in the city and a whopping 542 miles per tank on the highway, easily out-ranging the Cobalt, Civic, and Forte BY FAR.

    Now, you’re probably asking yourself why I am talking about this. Well, I am talking about this because this whole war over high miles per gallon means naught when you actually sit down and do the math. Automakers and dealerships are all deceiving customers because of this, and it falls under false and misleading advertising, which is illegal, so to stay on the legal side of the line, automakers must stop this miles per gallon war and instead display the miles per tank, which is more truthful than miles per gallon.