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IssacZachary
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Posts: 442
Joined: Fri Jan 13, 2017 9:57 am
Delivery Date: 15 Nov 2016
Leaf Number: 420789
Location: Gunnison, CO, USA

Re: Second car, owning vs renting vs borrowing vs avoiding.

Wed May 31, 2017 10:36 pm

LeftieBiker wrote:
SageBrush wrote:I have never owned a Mazda but I respect the company for their top flight engineering despite relatively limited resources and think they make fine cars. When the Mazda5 came out I thought it would be a hit since it offered so much utility in a car package.


We had three cars with Mazda drivetrains: a '90's era 323 hatchback and two Mercury Tracers. I became much less enamored of Mazda's engineering when the hydraulic lifters started failing - not just in the 323 but in both Tracers. They designed them poorly, they all seemed to fail even before 100k miles, and as a result I haven't seen this drivetrain on the road in 15 years. Meh.


I had a '93 323 that was my beloved car for several years before I got talked out of it by my father-in-law. The car cost me $250, needed a battery and a radiator and had a warped head. I found a receipt in the car with a warranty for the battery and went and had the head milled and put in a new radiator. The check engine light never came on after that and I got about 45mpg on the highway in it! I drove that car clear to Puerto Vallarta Mexico and back. I gave it to my father-in-law with over 200,000 miles on it. But he abused the poor thing and ended up taking it to the junkyard about 5 years later. I didn't think about the lifters but the problem he started to have with it sounds like that could have been the reason.

Speaking of Mazdas, I've always wanted an RX-8. There's just something about the rotary engine that intrigues me. But practicality keeps telling me "no!"
2013 SL 45,000 miles.
12 bars until 44,300 miles on June 2, 2017. :D
11 bars current. :)
Other vehicles: 1972 VW Super Beetle 1600cc dual port engine. 1985 VW Golf non-turbo 1.6L diesel.

LeftieBiker
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Joined: Wed May 22, 2013 3:17 am
Delivery Date: 31 May 2013
Location: Upstate New York, US

Re: Second car, owning vs renting vs borrowing vs avoiding.

Wed May 31, 2017 11:07 pm

I assume you got new lifters when the head was done? I tried rebuilt ones, and they failed too. New ones were about $100 each, IIRC. That engine would probably have done much better on full synthetic oil. The cars were great, aside from that ultimately fatal flaw. The Tracers actually had nicer, larger bodies, with some cheaper bits and pieces.
2013 "Brilliant Silver" SV with Premium Package and no QC, and 2009 Vectrix VX-1 with 18 Leaf cells.

The most offensive, tasteless phrase in use here is "Pulled the trigger." I no longer respond to posts that use it.

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IssacZachary
Forum Supporter
Posts: 442
Joined: Fri Jan 13, 2017 9:57 am
Delivery Date: 15 Nov 2016
Leaf Number: 420789
Location: Gunnison, CO, USA

Re: Second car, owning vs renting vs borrowing vs avoiding.

Wed May 31, 2017 11:24 pm

LeftieBiker wrote:I assume you got new lifters when the head was done? I tried rebuilt ones, and they failed too. New ones were about $100 each, IIRC. That engine would probably have done much better on full synthetic oil. The cars were great, aside from that ultimately fatal flaw. The Tracers actually had nicer, larger bodies, with some cheaper bits and pieces.

No, no new lifters. The mill job cost me about $50 (IIRC). But I was usually on top of my oil changes every 3 months.
2013 SL 45,000 miles.
12 bars until 44,300 miles on June 2, 2017. :D
11 bars current. :)
Other vehicles: 1972 VW Super Beetle 1600cc dual port engine. 1985 VW Golf non-turbo 1.6L diesel.

LeftieBiker
Posts: 6300
Joined: Wed May 22, 2013 3:17 am
Delivery Date: 31 May 2013
Location: Upstate New York, US

Re: Second car, owning vs renting vs borrowing vs avoiding.

Wed May 31, 2017 11:35 pm

We did oil changes every 6 months, which should have been fine for the miles driven. It wasn't with the 323.
2013 "Brilliant Silver" SV with Premium Package and no QC, and 2009 Vectrix VX-1 with 18 Leaf cells.

The most offensive, tasteless phrase in use here is "Pulled the trigger." I no longer respond to posts that use it.

2k1Toaster
Posts: 394
Joined: Mon Nov 18, 2013 5:45 pm
Delivery Date: 12 Nov 2013
Leaf Number: 420903

Re: Second car, owning vs renting vs borrowing vs avoiding.

Thu Jun 01, 2017 12:01 am

We've got lots of vehicles. The Leaf is an excellent car, and for some places it would work as a solo car. Unfortunately for us, 300mi+ ski trips are common in a single day going up and down mountains through white out blizzard conditions. I don't care about 4WD, but I need enough stored energy onboard to carry a bunch of cargo and the vehicle up and down mountain passes at highway speeds for hundreds of miles with HVAC controls. The Leaf can't do it. A Tesla can't do it. Petrol is really good at storing energy, and that's why we take the Prius to the mountains. The other major non-Leaf driving is on weekends. We fly almost every weekend which involves a 90mi drive at highway speeds (90mph+ sustained) to the airport one way. After we fly we almost always rent a car (except in NYC because public transport FTW!) and it is always a pure ICE or HEV. I have yet to get a BEV or even PHEV as a rental, and it is not for a lack of trying.

So I could survive with 2 vehicles, a Leaf and a "something else" with an engine. But sometimes you want luxury, so you get in the Lexus. Sometimes you want fun and the unpredictability of an old terrible car, and then there's the DeLorean.

Looking to add a 2018 Panamera plug-in when they come out later this year.
2013 Nissan Leaf SV with every option
2013 Prius C Package 4
2012 Lexus RX450h
2006 Prius Gen II, pIV
2005 Honda Civic Hybrid
2001 Honda Civic EX
1997 Honda Prelude SH
1981 DeLorean DMC12
and more...

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