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Re: Help me choose! Leaf vs Cmax Energi vs Volt and others..

Posted: Wed Jun 11, 2014 2:00 am
by LeftieBiker
I should think that someone who preferred both 'small efficient cars' and 'people movers' would get a four cylinder minivan, not an SUV. Small SUVs are terrible for families with young kids and large ones are not nearly as efficient or as effective at moving people as a minivan.

Re: Help me choose! Leaf vs Cmax Energi vs Volt and others..

Posted: Wed Jun 11, 2014 2:05 am
by cwerdna
LeftieBiker wrote:I should think that someone who preferred both 'small efficient cars' and 'people movers' would get a four cylinder minivan, not an SUV.
Unfortunately, IIRC, that REALLY limits your choices. There aren't a whole lot of 4-cylinder minivans left. There were long ago, but not anymore. (Yes, I remember the Chrysler minivans w/4-banger engines early on, including from Mitsubishi, as Chrysler apparently had no 6-cylinder engines for the longest time. They only had 4's and an outdated V8, so they were selling a whole bunch of NA and turbocharged 4's.)

Side note: The 4-banger Previa even made it on the cash for clunkers list: http://www.kbb.com/car-news/all-the-lat ... 000004406/" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;.

Re: Help me choose! Leaf vs Cmax Energi vs Volt and others..

Posted: Wed Jun 11, 2014 3:26 am
by RonDawg
cwerdna wrote:
LeftieBiker wrote:I should think that someone who preferred both 'small efficient cars' and 'people movers' would get a four cylinder minivan, not an SUV.
Unfortunately, IIRC, that REALLY limits your choices. There aren't a whole lot of 4-cylinder minivans left.
Yeah, a quick check of FuelEconomy.gov lists just two minivans with 4 cylinder engines as standard:

Mazda 5, 2.5L, 22/24/28 MPG
Toyota Sienna (2013 model), 2.7L, 19/21/24 MPG

The other minivan choices all have V-6 engines of 3.5 or 3.6L and fuel economy of 16-19 City/23-28 Hwy.

Meanwhile, there are many CUV choices whose city fuel economy is similar to the highway numbers of most of those minivans. For example, the Mazda CX-5 2WD gets 26/29/35 MPG and yet has 34.1 cubic feet of seats-up cargo space, 10 more than the Leaf.

If the OP wants the best combination of economy and cargo carrying, the Prius V is probably the best bet. 44/42/40 MPG and 34 cubic feet of seats-up cargo capacity. No plug-in capability however. There is also the Toyota RAV-4 EV but my understanding is that all have been spoken for and Toyota will not be making any more.
Side note: The 4-banger Previa even made it on the cash for clunkers list: http://www.kbb.com/car-news/all-the-lat ... 000004406/" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;.
O/T but I was shocked to see how new many of those vehicles were. Many were post-2000 models and a couple (Chevy Uplander and Pontiac Montana) were as new as 2006.

What a waste...

Re: Help me choose! Leaf vs Cmax Energi vs Volt and others..

Posted: Wed Jun 11, 2014 6:44 am
by abasile
We find that the LEAF works just fine with kids. The slightly raised rear "platform seating" helps when one has to bend down to adjust carseats, etc.

Truth be told, a larger vehicle would be nice for longer family drives, but not as a daily driver with the amount of gasoline we'd have to burn. We can get by without the extra space; it's not all that important to us. However, Tesla Model X looks to be the ultimate for those who can afford it.

Re: Help me choose! Leaf vs Cmax Energi vs Volt and others..

Posted: Wed Jun 11, 2014 7:26 am
by IBELEAF
Don't like minivans and don't really need that much space for 8 people, I just needed a bigger cargo area for strollers and bags. MPG don't matter much when you have short commute, but convenience starts to matter. Actually I was planning to get outlander phev but it was delayed so hoping in a few years we will have more options.

Re: Help me choose! Leaf vs Cmax Energi vs Volt and others..

Posted: Wed Jun 11, 2014 8:11 am
by jasavak
IBELEAF wrote:Don't like minivans and don't really need that much space for 8 people, I just needed a bigger cargo area for strollers and bags. MPG don't matter much when you have short commute, but convenience starts to matter. Actually I was planning to get outlander phev but it was delayed so hoping in a few years we will have more options.
Two years ago , we traded our 2005 Yukon XL for an economy car . My wife missed it so much that she bought another one . I have to admit , it drives great , has lots of space and is built to last . I showed her some good deals on minivans , but she refused .

Re: Help me choose! Leaf vs Cmax Energi vs Volt and others..

Posted: Wed Jun 11, 2014 9:39 am
by IBELEAF
jasavak wrote:
IBELEAF wrote:Don't like minivans and don't really need that much space for 8 people, I just needed a bigger cargo area for strollers and bags. MPG don't matter much when you have short commute, but convenience starts to matter. Actually I was planning to get outlander phev but it was delayed so hoping in a few years we will have more options.
Two years ago , we traded our 2005 Yukon XL for an economy car . My wife missed it so much that she bought another one . I have to admit , it drives great , has lots of space and is built to last . I showed her some good deals on minivans , but she refused .
Yeah, my wife was right two times, when we first got Leaf and then Volt that eventually we'll need a bigger car. The point is once kids (multiple) in the equitation, don't bother with small cars. Yes, it was fine for commuting to work, but weeknights and weekend outings had to be done in a bigger car. Throw in a short daily commute which is what sounds like OP has and the whole "get efficient car" idea no longer makes any financial sense. It's less then 20 miles for two cars. Btw, I got 2014 Durango, yes it runs on gas, but fits everything and everyone comfortably, has the looks and loving all the technology it comes with.

Re: Help me choose! Leaf vs Cmax Energi vs Volt and others..

Posted: Wed Jun 11, 2014 9:59 am
by pkulak
I have a 2-year-old and a 4-year-old and we have no problem with the leaf. Putting our quite-large stroller in the trunk only makes it level with the bumper and then we have plenty of room for all kinds of other things. But, I've never owned a larger car, so I have no idea what I'd be comparing it too.

Re: Help me choose! Leaf vs Cmax Energi vs Volt and others..

Posted: Wed Jun 11, 2014 10:07 am
by IBELEAF
pkulak wrote:I have a 2-year-old and a 4-year-old and we have no problem with the leaf. Putting our quite-large stroller in the trunk only makes it level with the bumper and then we have plenty of room for all kinds of other things. But, I've never owned a larger car, so I have no idea what I'd be comparing it too.
I take it you never went camping or traveled overnight anywhere with your kids? It's not just a stroller...

The car is fully packed for a two night trip and it wasn't even camping trip, for that I have to get cargo box. It's a stroller, a couple bags with clothes, toys, cooler.
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Re: Help me choose! Leaf vs Cmax Energi vs Volt and others..

Posted: Wed Jun 11, 2014 12:12 pm
by LeftieBiker
Yeah, a quick check of FuelEconomy.gov lists just two minivans with 4 cylinder engines as standard:

Oh, no! Just two choices, plus all the station wagons (CUVs)! Right. If you want a big SUV, don't pretend it's about the children, please. Sheesh.