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fishexpo101

Next New Car: To Be Or Not To Be Toyota

Toyota Motor Company - as good as it gets, or are there better choices  

12 members have voted

  1. 1. If you had to buy a new car in the next couple of months, would you choose Toyota?

    • Yes, Toyota still makes the most reliable vehicle out there for the money
    • No, Toyota has sat too long on its reputation, competitors are making better vehicles for your hard earned money
    • Maybe, depends if they start stepping up their vehicle's quality, go back to what made Toyota legendary in the first place


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Being an avid Toyota owner for the past couple of decades, wondering if Toyota has finally ridden its reputation too far out and now find themselves swamped by their competitors. Wondering if other people are in the same boat - stay with Toyota, look elsewhere, or wait and see if Toyota gets back in the game.

 

Myself, I'll wait and see if Toyota gets back to innovating, pushing quality and bang for your buck. Couple of things make me feel waiting might be worth it - they are stepping up their game in the truck segment, making choices to toughen up their trucks, more off-road capable - back to their Land Cruiser roots. Camry will see a new top to bottom redesign, having sat pretty much frozen the past decade or so and seeing sales slide to their competitors. Corolla redesign fell a little short, IMO, could have pushed it a little further. Possible relaunch of the Supra to help cater to the enthusiast crowd is pleasing to see. With the relatively well received reviews of the Scion FR-S/Subaru BRZ twins - Toyota is definitely heading in the right direction.

Edited by fishexpo101

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trap

Fish

How many times are they going to redesign the Camry. The did it in 07. I thought again in 2011 and now you are saying they are redesigning the Camry again.

Frank.

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If I had to buy a car right now (2014 model year, brand new, small to mid-size sedan, around $25K), the Toyota Camry would NOT be on that list:

 

I'd be looking at something like these (in no particular order):

 

- VW Passat

- Honda Accord

- Mazda6

- Subaru Legacy

- Chevy Malibu

- Ford Fusion

- Hyundai Sonata

- Kia Optima

- Nissan Altima

 

Reliability is non-issue here, as some of these above actually have better reliability than the Camry (according to autoguide.com). Interior appointments are a wash, some better than others in some areas, some worse in others. Ride quality and fun to drive - even fuel economy - all these blow the Camry out of the water in real-world reviews.

 

VW Passat - like a limousine compared to the others, like the previous generations of Camry - specifically designed for the North American market (size, lots of buttons, power, etc). A lot of car for the money.

 

Honda Accord - same league, in terms of reliability, to the Toyota - but with a more flexible engine, better MPG, and better handling. V6 + 6-speed transforms this family car to something that could bring shame to your typical high dollar German touring cars (BMW, Audi, Mercedes, etc.)

 

Mazda6 - that new Skyactiv engine spanks anything that Toyota put out. More power, better fuel economy, smaller package. Especially the 2.2L Skyactiv-D turbo diesel - 173HP, 310ft.lb just off idle. That is almost your old school V8 power. Plus their handling has always been in their sweet spot - the new Mazda6 doesn't disappoint there.

 

Subaru Legacy - always the odd-ball one out there, conservative styling, boxer engine layout, symmetric AWD, and built like a little tank. Go anywhere, do anything, and bring you back in one piece sort of car. Their reliability, aside from a few headgasket issues, is legendary like Toyota.

 

Chevy Malibu - Car that has sort of a crisis, but in a good way. Interior is pretty sad (think typical plastic rental car), but the overall car is solid, great potential - needs to get out from under corporate GM and they will have a winner on their hands.

 

Ford Fusion - Styling inside and out, lots of powertrain choices, solid car all around. Follows in the same vein as the early Ford Taurus - where they pushed the jellybean shape that has changed a two decades of car styling. Looks like a mini-Aston Martin, good handling and construction.

 

Hyundai Sonata / Kia Optima - These two are similar chassis, both are a lot of car for the money and offer similar options. Think of the Kia as the "sportier" version of the Hyundai. Both used to be distance finishers compared to the mainstream - now they are considered on par or in some cases, better, than their peers.

 

Nissan Altima - Seeming a perennial second runner up to Toyota and Honda, they really got their act together with engineering and scales of economy help from Renault - they emerged as a real powerhouse. Well known for handling and powertrain flexibility. Add in some European styling and flair - and you get the new Nissans.

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Fish

How many times are they going to redesign the Camry. The did it in 07. I thought again in 2011 and now you are saying they are redesigning the Camry again.

Frank.

 

They will do a top and bottom redesign for the 2015 model year - though you can consider this a "big minor change", as it will still be the same generation of Camry (7th gen). Same powertrain and chassis, but almost all body panels will be reworked. Camry has historically seen some sort of mid-model redesign. Though this will be a little more extensive than the usually filler panel or lamp assembly change.

Edited by fishexpo101

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I'm seriously considering trading my 2004 Corolla on Honda's next generation (2015?) Civic EX coupe i-VTEC GDI 1.8 Earth Dreams engine with Atkinson cycle and 6 speed manual tranny... I like where Honda is going, and how their looks are improving. Mazda is really pushing their Sky-Activ promotions, with big claims of winning all the "AJAC" awards, best resale value, etc. Aren't their high compression Sky-Activ engines completely unreliable, like the discontinued 2.3?

 

VW is now said to be back up to #2 in worldwide sales, and soon to overtake Toyota... Their powertrains have been awful though, old discarded Audi engineering, and absolutely horrible to work on. They seem ugly and expensive, and they've definitely warded me off.

 

http://www.biznews.com/motoring/2014/07/vw-catching-toyota-global-vehicle-sales/

 

– Volkswagen is closing in on Toyota Motor Corp as the global leader in vehicle sales, with a rapid expansion drive in China – the world’s biggest auto market – while Toyota curbs growth to focus on shoring up quality.

 

Toyota has put a freeze on the building of new plants until about 2016, and President Akio Toyoda has stressed that the company is focused on building better cars rather than chasing sales volume.

Edited by dom

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Honda has always been a strong contender - they've really up'd their material choice for interior appointments, where as Toyota went the other way. A far cry from the mouse fur Honda used to use in the cabin. Their line of Earth Dream engines are pretty stunning, capturing two spots on the Ward's 10 Best Engine award in 2013. I see this looking like Toyota's own 2GR-FSE 3.5L V6 and 1UZ-FE 4.0L V8 - both being sweethearts of an engine with huge potential - winning the Ward's 10 Best four years (2006-2009) and three years in a row (1998-2000). Toyota has been pretty quiet since then, only their Hybrids popping up on that list since then, but I don't consider them very innovative. Toyota still hasn't jumped on the DI bandwagon aside from the Scibaro twins with Subaru's 2.0L FA20 engine.

 

Mazda Skyactiv engines have shown to be pretty reliable. They still have some issues with their automatic transaxles, not shifting smoothly, etc. Engines themselves, only thing I've heard negatively was excessive carbon deposits (too low of octane, too thin oil, not running the engine hard enough), VERY sensitive to break-in - have to do a methodical 500 mile break-in or suffer possible ring seating issues, which leads to excessive fuel dilution into the crankcase oil, doesn't help that it is direct injected, as those tend to have higher than average fuel dilution in the oil anyways.

 

VW has turned around lately, using Audi bits is not always a bad thing. QC is way better than before, but I agree - VW is general are a nightmare to work on. Impossible clearance, weird tools, and some parts are crazy expensive.

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Fish

What models of Hondas have the Stunning earth dream engine. Also automatic or just manual. Sounds like a nice car how is reliability.

What is the DI band wagon that Toyota has not jumped on too.

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All the new Hondas will use this technolody. Not really restricted to just the engine or a car, this is Honda's new powertrain philosophy, if you will. They offer these with both automatics and manuals. Though they are starting to move to CVT versus conventional automatics to help boost efficiency. CVT can be a good or bad thing, depending on what you are used to driving.

 

DI = Direct Injection or sometimes labeled as GDI = Gasoline Direct Injection, Toyota has not embraced this injection strategy compared to their competitors.

 

They claim it is an issue of reliability and cost, even through this technology has been around since the early 1990's. Engines that have direction injection compared to conventional injection have seen significant gains in power, lower emissions, and especially low end torque. When coupled with force induction (ie, turbocharger, supercharger) - the results can be even more staggering. Some cases, they see 15% more HP, less emissions, and a 50% bump in low end torque.

 

As for reliability - only time will tell.

Edited by fishexpo101

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Fish

I thought earth dream was an engine by Honda.

It is a power train technology. It comes in 2015 automatic civics and accords.

Thanks

Frank.

Edited by Bull6791

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Just happens to be that Honda calls its next generation powertrain "Earth Dream". Basically took what they've already done with the different generations of VTEC engines and transmissions, advanced materials and system control - and pushed even further out. Applies to gasoline, hybrids, and diesel variants with conventional automatics, manual, CVT, and potentially auto-manuals

 

Earth Dream Technology is a next generation set of technological advancements, for Honda Motor Company, which is aimed at greatly enhance both driving performance and fuel efficiency at a high level, using advanced environmental technologies. Primary implementation aims to achieve top-of-industry fuel efficiency while simultaneously setting a timeline of 2020 to reduce by 30% CO2 emissions for all products.

 

From Honda corporate, the inspiration of the "Earth Dreams Technology" name was an expression for a set of technologies which takes into account both our need to protect the environment and our desire to provide a joy of driving.

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Fish

IMO if I were to get another car a 2015 base on your info and what I read I would probably get in no order. Honda: Civic accord or cr-v. All automatic w/ earth dream.

Mazda with sky activ and Toyota corolla.

Who makes Mazda are they European.

I really want a Rav4 but you have turned me off by saying the newest ones are more staton wagon like and not SUV like. So Honda CR-V would be my next choice. How are they.

Frank

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The planned 2015 CR-Vs are not much different than the new Rav4. They won't change too much on the new model, compared to the previous generation CR-V - it will be primarily sold as FWD CUV, AWD being an option. Power will be the disappointment here - as the CR-V will not get the revised Earth Dream engines, it will use the carry over 2.4L iVTEC engine until they decide it gets upgraded. Exterior and interior will get very conservative upgrades - which could spell doom for the CR-V. As Toyota did exactly that with the Rav4 and saw its sales drop.

 

Don't get me wrong - the new Rav4 and CR-V are great vehicles, but both have taken a turn toward on road comfort and control, versus on-road/off-road flexibility that made them so popular in the first place. If you are looking to go off-road at all - I'd look into the Subaru Forester, Jeeps or Toyota FJ before they get discontinued. New Rav4 and CR-V are like the Volvo cross-over - more a wagon than AWD trucklet, even the AWD has taken a backseat to comfort. I actually like the truck-like ride on the 3rd gen Rav4 - that's why I bought it in the first place, wanted a little AWD truck.

 

Here is a great comparision review by Planet Subaru - - as you can tell, they are basically taller AWD wagons now. The Subaru Forester blows them out of the water on both on-road and off-road prowess.

 

Mazda is a Japanese company, with a long history of partnership with Ford - at one point, Ford owned a 1/3 of Mazda. Now, Ford and Mazda have gone their separate ways, neither one has a stake in the other.

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Fish

My wife has a 2011 Subaru forester. On this model they redesigned the engine. On the 2010 forester her sister has it takes 5w-30 oil. On the 2011 we have with the new redesigned engine it takes 0w-20 oil.

Now we bought this forester brand new. Their was a paper that they sent us in the mail. The paper reads: it is very important to note that the engines for these vehicles require the specific motor oil listed. Motor oil is 0w-20 synthetic.

It says 5w-30 conventional May be used if replenishment is needed but should be changed to 0w-20 synthetic at next oil change.

Fish why is it so important for 2011 forester redesigned new engine that you can not use any oil but 0w-20 synthetic. I do not get it.

I do not know why you can only use this type of oil but must be important they sent me a letter on it.

Frank

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Couple reasons - one is corporate CAFE numbers, by spec'ing a 20 weight oil, they can keep up with the tightening CAFE requirements affecting all automakers. By running an oil that could potentially boost fuel economy, the manufacturer can bank those CAFE number from their fleet of cars and get significant CAFE exemptions (ie, tax breaks). Lots of manufacturers are doing this - especially since CAFE jumped the MPG target from 27.5MPG to 30.2MPG in 2011. There is also a pretty convoluted "credit" program for CAFE as well, manufacturers that beat the minimum CAFE standards can "bank" their CAFE credits ahead 3-5 years. That's why a lot of manufacturers have recommended 20-weights in 2005 - 2007 model years. Building up those credits to carry them through some tougher years. Most of the imports have picked up some decent gains - to the tune of billions. Toyota alone is sitting on around $2.5 billion in CAFE credits, Honda around $800-$900 million - compared to the big three domestics, which collectively have around $1.8 billion in credits.

 

The 20 weight oils have also shown pretty decent protection in modern engines, they also meet the more stringent ILSAC GF-5 requirement of reduced deposit loading - thinner oil for fast flow, decent film strength for bearing protection, less deposits when they break down. Shearing down could potentially cause some issues (oil consumption, etc.) - probably the reason why on the turbocharged mills, they kept with the 30-weights instead of dropping them to the 20-weights.

 

Subaru also spec'd a 7500 mile oil change interval on their cars. For that interval, and as tough as engines are now on oil - requiring owners to run synthetic gives the oil that much of a buffer to work with. A conventional may go that distance between oil changes, but much better chance that a synthetic will cover that interval and still provide extra protection from non-typical driving situations. They recommend a short initial oil change interval at 3000 miles, then 7500 miles after that. Only synthetic motor oil to be used. If you use a heavier oil or conventional oil - will the engine be damaged? Probably unlikely, but you'd better hope that if there is a lubrication issue, that the required oil is in the crankcase before you try and put up a warranty claim.

 

Not just Subaru, but lots of German makes (BMW, Mercedes, Audi, VW, Porsche) require synthetic, some Toyotas (Hybrids), some Hondas as well. Eventually, I can see the rest of the market going in this direction - people just want longer service intervals, they don't have time to be bothered with short intervals. Vehicles now a days - have pretty much done away with the typical "tune-up". Most not requiring any major service for 100K, 120K, or 150K miles!

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Fish

I know Subaru recommends 7500 miles oil changes but is that to long between oil changes. I thought the longer your OCI and the longer the oil sits in the sump that was bad. The longer the oil sits in the sump the acidity in the oil is bad for the car. So that is why I am thinking their 7500 mile oil change interval could be too long. Even though it's factory recommended by Subaru if you are going that long between oil changes should you do Used oil analysis to stay on top of acidity.

Actually its 7500 or 7 1/2 months what ever comes first. She never hits the milage so we change oil every 7 1/2 months

On my O5 corolla if I switch to synthetic oil I can bump OCI from 3000 to 5000-60000. Now because of oil sitting to long and acidity in the oil any thing over 5000 miles I should do used oil analysis.

So it's a two fold question: with Subaru OCI 7500 long between oil changes should I be doing UOA to stay on top of acidity in oil.

Also with 05 corolla if I switch to synthetic oil 5000-6000 mile oil Change interval what would be the time to do UOA to stay on top of acidity in oil. At 5000 miles.

Thanks Frank.

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