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Opinions on fun, fuel efficient daily driver search

  • katblackdiesel
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17 Sep 2021 09:20 #51504 by katblackdiesel
Hello everyone! I'm currently shopping around for a new to me daily driver and for once I have the ability to do my research about it first. So, here's the scoop. My commute to work is 65 miles one way and my current daily is a gas guzzling 5.7L Toyota Tundra. I would prefer something I don't have to spend close to $100 of gas on every three days. (Other than that, I have no issues with it as a daily, its a solid beast!) I've only ever worked on diesels or European models, so I would like everybody's pros and cons on what y'all might know. 

My requirements:
  • Manual drive
  • 25mpg highway OR better
  • Price range around, but preferably below $10K
  • If not cheap to fix, at least be easy to work on.
Models I've narrowed down to:
  • Toyota Celica (2000+)
  • Scion FRS (2013+)
  • Subaru BRZ (2013+)
  • Mazda RX8 (2004+)
  • Hyundai Veloster (2012+)
  • Honda Beat (1991) There's only one of these available, but I am interested in it and other RHD manuals. 
Any other suggestions welcome! 
Emissions are not required in my county, and the majority of if not all FRS/BRZs available have salvaged titles. 

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17 Sep 2021 18:47 #51521 by AJeep18
Probably not what you are going for, but my friends dad is in the same situation, long drive wanted good fuel mileage. He go a Mercedes 190D Turbo Diesel   Cheap: check Fuel Efficient: check Fun: depends on who you are... I think they can be had with a stick. One thing I would advice against is an RX8... rotaries aren't really known for their outstanding reliability, but man are they ever cool. 
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18 Sep 2021 16:44 #51537 by Noah
If I needed a 4 cylinder stick car I'd go Honda Element, because winter sucks here and I won't sacrifice AWD.

-Seems to me that I could live my life, a lot better than I think I am.
I guess that's why call me The Working Man.-
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18 Sep 2021 17:20 #51539 by Andy.MacFadyen
Replied by Andy.MacFadyen on topic Opinions on fun, fuel efficient daily driver search
Went turbo diesel myself. Rover with BMW M47 engine 47+ MPG 130 hp --- pre-DPF pulls like a train

" We're trying to plug a hole in the universe, what are you doing ?. "
(Walter Bishop Fringe TV show)



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20 Sep 2021 12:24 #51589 by katblackdiesel
Replied by katblackdiesel on topic Opinions on fun, fuel efficient daily driver search
Thanks for the suggestions!

I work in Atlanta, and live only about an hour north of there. so winters aren't really a huge concern, we mainly deal with rain. Not to mention if the weather is bad enough I'll be driving the Tundra anyway.

Euro diesels were a thought I had when I started my search BUT I work at a European shop in Atlanta which means I know for a fact any euro car in my price range is NOT worth the headache. People buy them to look cool and don't take care of them. Every single one of them we've seen has needed about 10K worth of work.

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11 Oct 2021 13:10 #51974 by katblackdiesel
Replied by katblackdiesel on topic Opinions on fun, fuel efficient daily driver search
 I found my new car! Its a 2003 Toyota Celica GT

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13 Oct 2021 10:33 #52005 by juergen.scholl
Replied by juergen.scholl on topic Opinions on fun, fuel efficient daily driver search

 I found my new car! Its a 2003 Toyota Celica GT

Looks nice and clean....Enjoy

An expert is someone who knows each time more on each time less, until he finally knows absolutely everything about absolutely nothing.
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14 Oct 2021 12:17 - 14 Oct 2021 12:17 #52018 by Noah
Yeah, looks sharp. Nice car 

-Seems to me that I could live my life, a lot better than I think I am.
I guess that's why call me The Working Man.-
Last edit: 14 Oct 2021 12:17 by Noah.
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