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Favorite car for Road Bikers?(17 posts)

Favorite car for Road Bikers?WalterBleser
Mar 5, 2003 12:18 PM
Hey all

i need some help with my next car purchase. Any opinions on cars that work great for hauling your bike all the time to rides and races and what not? I really like the new Mini Cooper but can't tell if it is too small. How about the subaru WRX wagon?

Honda Element?Me Dot Org
Mar 5, 2003 12:42 PM
It's butt-ugly, but the bed is very flat, and it's tall. Probably could fit some bikes in there.
Consider a pre-2003 Saab 9-3. They have tonsRhodyRider
Mar 5, 2003 1:36 PM
of room in the hatch, a wicked sanitary factory (Thule) roof-rail system, will seat four pretty comfortably, plenty of power & performance, stylish (IMHO), and reliable. I've got a 2002 SE, and it is the best car I've ever had. (FWIW, I drove the Audi A4 and 3-series BMW prior to purchase, and the A4 was anemic, but with a nice console, and the bmw was just not even close to being worth the money.)
I had a '95 Saab 900S too, same body style. These things will haul all you got, without the stigma and fuel bills attached to minivans, suvs, etc.
The new 9-3 (2003) is very sweet, a total hot-rod, but the redesign left it without a hatch, which in my opinion is a negative.
Good luck, have fun shopping!
Consider a pre-2003 Saab 9-3. They have tonsWalterBleser
Mar 5, 2003 2:27 PM
Thanks. I will check them out!
FWIW, you should be able to find a good, cleanRhodyRider
Mar 6, 2003 7:45 AM
one with relatively low miles (under 30k) coming off a lease for $16500 or so. This is the case here in New England, anyway, where Saabs are plentiful. is a very good site for searching used and new, check it out.
I really want a Mini.DougSloan
Mar 5, 2003 3:09 PM
I love Minis. I just might get one, if I can talk my wife into it. I'd have to get the S with the upgraded supercharger, though.

On the other hand, maybe we cyclists should all be driving Kenworths, so we can intimidate the pickup/SUV drivers normally running us off the road? At least get a Hummer, and get even.

I thought I did too,TJeanloz
Mar 5, 2003 4:00 PM
I thought I wanted a Mini (S, of course), given that parking in my neighborhood is impossible, but marginally easier with a small car. I test drove one, and they're damn small. I don't think you could fit two people and a bag of groceries into one. And it just didn't seem well-built; much chintzier than a Honda Civic, or low-end Toyota.
good infoDougSloan
Mar 6, 2003 7:37 AM
I have wanted a Mini since my autocross days with my MR2. The old Minis weighed only 1500 pounds and had 10 inch (I think?) wheels. These new ones are 1000 pounds fatter and sport 16 and 17 inch wheels. Not quite the same thing, but it just has the nastalgic look.

There is an upgrade for the supercharger that is dealer installed that ups the power to 200. Even at 2500 pounds, that would make it fairly quick.

This would not be good for an only car, but if you have larger vehicles, too, then you should be covered.

Toyota PriusPdxMark
Mar 5, 2003 4:05 PM
Drives well. Roof rack can hold as many bikes as you want. Lowest emissions possible, especially in low-sulfur gasoline states like California. Better mileage in-town than on highway. Kinda chintzy interior.

Civic Hybrid looks better inside and gets slightly better highway mileage (at expense of in town) and has better crash rating, but not as clean on the emissions.
Subaru - all the way.sacheson
Mar 5, 2003 4:55 PM
My wife and I have an Outback, and are on our second Subaru. If you're more of the bachelor/ette type, the WRX would be a fun, fun car.

We are both pretty active people. I do the bike thing; plus kayak, back country or resort ski, she runs and climbs, and we'll both do some camping, hiking, backpacking, etc. and even golf together. We also have two 70+ lb dogs that go almost everywhere with us. I have to say, the Outback with a Yakima Rocket Box type attachment is all we've ever needed.

Our second vehicle is an older Jeep. It pretty much doesn't need to be said that for fuel efficiency, style, drive quality, and just plain favoritism slots the Suby for our high-mileage vehicle. In just over two years, we've put nearly 50K miles on it. We spent our first non-scheduled service on it last month, and that was $150.

Here in Colorado, the Outback is the single most popular car (maybe outdone by 4Runners for most popular thing on 4 wheels). At any given cycling event, they litter the parking lots for good reason. They are durable, are reletively inexpensive to own, and have a lot of great and usable room. I highly recommend one.

For what it's worth, we're starting the look for a second depreciating asset. I'm kind of decided on one of those new 4-door trucks, although looming global uncertainty and rising gas prices are having their effect on those thoughts. I don't know what your budget or style prefers, but the Toyota Tacoma 4 door with a topper is a great cycling / active person ride, also.
Mar 6, 2003 4:47 AM
My husband and I each have a Legacy wagon, a '97 and a '92. They're both high mileage, but have never given us problems. We have a Yakima rack on the '97 and, with all the cargo room inside and the bikes on the roof, it is the ultimate gear-hauling, road-tripping machine. AWD sure is nice too.....

Outback here! Looking at the Chrysler Pacifica 4WD next. nmsn69
Mar 6, 2003 7:15 AM
ooooh WRX...girchygirchy
Mar 5, 2003 7:58 PM
*DROOL* Being in college, I can't afford a new car...but a WRX wagon would definately be on my list, after a Mazda 6 (it's cheaper :). I'd test it out, I heard even the wagon doesn't have that much more room than the sedan. Maybe try a Legacy wagon of some sort, if you like Subarus.

I drive an '85 Caprice, and after taking the front wheel off, the trunk simply swallows my mt bike. Leaves plenty of room for gear, too. Probably not what you're looking for though!

Passat wagonmickey-mac
Mar 6, 2003 6:07 AM
It has lots of cargo room with the rear seats folded down, gets pretty good mileage, and is quick for a 4 cylinder with the turbo. It doesn't handle like a wagon and looks pretty nice, IMHO.
Mar 6, 2003 7:04 AM
Lots of room - heck room for the bikes of your whole team.

Gas mileage - who cares?? We'll own Iraq's oilfields in a week anyway.

Looks - go for the bright yellow. It'll piss off the liberal left. Or black, to scare'em

Cost - a mere $55,000. heck, buy two.

Name - where else but in the good 'ol USA can you drive a vehicle named after a blow job???

And the added bonus is that you can get a tax deduction to reduce the cost by $38,000 and you can drive a mini into the back.
Unfortunately for me: Minivangregario
Mar 6, 2003 7:48 AM
I'm married with no kids (and never will have them) and I drive a minivan chiefly because it's perfect for the Tandem. I take out all the seats behind the driver's and the tandem rolls right in. I made a fork mount with scrap wood and a bike tite. I sure wish I was driving something else though. I like VW's. Someone else suggested a Passat wagon, that would be a good choice, and I've considered a Honda Element as well. Subaru Forester looks like it has a lot of room as well. Can't beat the van for convenience though. Ugh.
WRX vs MINIWalterBleser
Mar 6, 2003 10:10 AM
Thanks for all the responses! I must admit, i love the way the mini looks but I am just not sure where to put all the gear. The WRX seems like the way to go: Stick shift, 227 HP, AWD, 4 doors, wagon...what am I missing?

Oh horrible in town mileage cause you would want to hot rod the damn thing all the time.