What car should I buy for poorly maintained roads?
June 20, 2008 10:45 PM Subscribe
Not driving for work, only for fun. Have been hitting a lot of poorly maintained roads... which car to buy?
posted by ceberon to travel & transportation (14 answers total)
I moved to Washington State (Seattle actually) 6 months ago, and my wife is finally able to move out here as well (house finally is selling, long story).
We used to both drive cars for 2-3 hours each day for a commute, but now we're either walking or taking public transportation to work.
I'm interested in hiking, and have taken my wife's old car (A VW Beetle, I get lots of strange looks) down many a dirt track, bumpy road, snow covered hill, etc, trying to find a trailhead.
For only driving on weekends and to trailheads, what kind of car would you get?
1. Able to take large rocks / bumps without a problem.
2. Should cost less than $5-8k used.
3. Should be somewhat reliable.
4. We won't have kids, so 2 seats are fine.
5. Should be able to handle moderate amounts of snow.
The obvious option is a Jeep Wrangler. I've also heard a few people suggest a Honda Element. Any other suggestions?
The main concern I have with Jeep Wrangler's is that I've heard they don't have a great reliability record? Anyone with a Jeep want to comment?
The main concern I have with an Element is it's too new to have many cheap used ones available. Plus I don't know much about its off-road capacity, though a few message boards have had some good comments.
I'd like a car with better mpg than a Jeep, but I figure I won't be driving enough to have it make a huge difference. I'm hoping the recent gas price hike might make used 4x4 vehicles cheaper :)