Open Thread: I Got a New Ride

My old ride:


We were kind of outgrowing it, plus I am worried about an issue with a possible serious recall in the near future, so safety was becoming a concern. Trade-in the Kia Soul now while it had some real value.

I really wanted my next car to be a hybrid. Excited I found a plug-in hybrid SUV that fits all of us:

Kia Niro. 105-107 mpg (in strictly hybrid mode, it’s about 50 mpg).

Open thread until the next awful thing comes across the news.

 






90 replies
  1. 1

    And I have a question – anyone have a plug-in EV or Hybrid? I’m curious how much it increases your utilities. I can charge at one of my clients, but that’s only one day a week.

  2. 2
    rikyrah says:

    Pretty looking car.

  3. 3
    Eljai says:

    Congratulations! I love that new car smell!

  4. 4
    Jim, Foolish Literalist says:

    @TaMara (HFG): I was just wondering about plug-in options. You do it at home? I had a Tesla as an Uber a few weeks ago, and the driver said he has to go to Tesla stations to charge, and that he got lifetime charging free as part of his deal. Apparently sometimes you have to pay to charge?

    I’ll be interested in your satisfaction with the Niro. Looks like a great option, climate-wise

  5. 5
    Journeywoman says:

    As a fellow Soul owner, can I ask what recall you’re worried about?

  6. 6
    Humdog says:

    My Saturn wagon turns 25 next month, with 80K miles. I still love it but it is showing its age. An opportunity for a newer car just plopped into my life, a 2016 small SUV with 90K miles, carefully maintained, for $10k. A good deal, but feels odd to buy a newer car with more miles on it. What do you guys think?

  7. 7

    @Jim, Foolish Literalist: I will keep you updated. I’m curious, too. We have lots of free options here – it’s just I work from a home office, so it’s a matter of logistics.

    Regardless, my electricity costs are relatively low, they use a combo of solar/wind/standard options at my utility. So that feels better than gasoline. It’s not perfect, but it’s a step.

    The range per tank of gas is 550 miles – that doesn’t calculate in using it in EV mode. Which around town I can do all the time.

  8. 8
    Barbara says:

    @TaMara (HFG): What is the range of the battery?

  9. 9
    rikyrah says:

    Nancy Pelosi DUNKING on their ASS………….

    Stephen Miller was writing SOTU to blame Democrats for shutdown — until Nancy Pelosi pulled the rug out: reporthttps://t.co/L9wa22sKQ9 pic.twitter.com/sxane5ttW8

    — 3ChicsPolitico (@3ChicsPolitico) January 16, 2019

  10. 10

    @Barbara: 26 miles on battery alone.

  11. 11
    trollhattan says:

    @TaMara (HFG):
    No, but we have a smart electric meter that allow reviewing our use in hourly increments, which accommodates experimenting. If you have something similar you can plug the car in during a low-use time and watch the meter data. I also have one of these, which gives me real-time and total consumption for a single item, but I don’t whether something similar is available for a car-charge station (I assume they’re 240V). This summer we transition to time-of-use metering and I’ll be figuring out what not to use between 5 and 8. Ugh.

    Congrats on the new ride. Teach the doggies to chase the ball and you too can be an honorary soccer mom!

  12. 12

    @rikyrah: That link is not working, and I can fix it. If you try a new one, I’ll embed it.

  13. 13
    Pogonip says:

    How many kids do you have, Tamara? I have 1 but he’s oversized (6’4”).

  14. 14
    trollhattan says:

    @Humdog:
    Someone put 90k on a 2016? Is there a backstory?

    You’ll be amazed at how much ride harshness, road noise, and general squeaks and creaks disappear transitioning to a car not 25 years old.

  15. 15
    comrade scotts agenda of rage says:

    When plugging in at home, are you using plain old plugs from the garage/house or are you going with something like a 40amp/Level 2 charging station?

    Also too, a plug sharing app:
    https://www.plugshare.com/

    I’d love to get a solar array on our historic garage roof out back and a level 2 station. The Hyundai Ioniq plugin hybrid looked appealing until I saw Consumer Report’s data on it: not reliable.

  16. 16
    Barbara says:

    @TaMara (HFG): Download the app called PlugShare, which will you show you every charging station in your area, and will have some information about whether you have to pay. There are different networks you can join to pay for charging, but many commercial locations don’t require payment. Walgreen’s and Harris Teeter in my neck of the woods and Price Chopper in upstate New York have put charging stations in many of their parking lots and don’t charge to use them. Many locations in Colorado (e.g., Vail) have chargers in municipal parking lots, which they don’t charge for, but they do charge for parking.

  17. 17
    dmsilev says:

    @TaMara (HFG): Try this instead. Or this tweet (from the linked story):

    My colleague @kaitlancollins adds some context: Stephen Miller and other WH speechwriters have been working on the SOTU address for weeks. An administration official said they were prepared to craft it around the government shutdown, targeting Democrats, if it was still closed

  18. 18

    @trollhattan: Believe it or not, it’s 110 – and charges in about 6 hours – because it’s not a full EV. About 2.5 hours on a 240. So, as long as I remember to plug it in at night – it wasn’t worth the $500 to buy the 240 charger and have it installed.

    I keep meaning to call the city (they own our utility) and see if they have any info on EV charging – maybe cost breaks and/or monitoring.

    But I must tell you, that buying a car like this requires a lot of education – the learning curve is exhausting.

  19. 19
    trollhattan says:

    Today an atmospheric river arrives in NorCal, the first in years of this size. Strap in, hang on and keep the go bag in the trunk.

    The water storage system has plenty of unused capacity but when one of these systems parks over a single drainage for an extended time, that river’s storage will fill quickly. That’s when fun begins.

  20. 20

    @comrade scotts agenda of rage:
    @Barbara:

    It actually came with an installed app that tells you where you can charge and if there is a cost. It’s very helpful. But I’ll check out plugshare.

  21. 21
    JR says:

    Plug-in hybrids are great. Takes a little getting used to. Downside is that you can never get the EV parking spots anymore.

  22. 22
    JR says:

    Plug-in hybrids are great. Takes a little getting used to. Downside is that you can never get the EV parking spots anymore.

    Utility increase was $10/month for us, give or take. We drive only 6-8K per year though.

  23. 23
    JR says:

    @TaMara (HFG): Utility increase was ~$10 per month. We drive about 6-8K miles per year.

  24. 24
    trollhattan says:

    @TaMara (HFG):
    I’m surprised, it’s great to have the 110 option because you can theoretically charge it anywhere. Don’t forget the extension cord!

    The Kill-A-Watt gizmo I noted can stay in the outlet you use and will display both your real-time usage in watts and amps and importantly, adds up the cumulative kilowatt-hours over time. Getting a baseline over the first few months should be pretty simple.

  25. 25
    Cermet says:

    What do you mean 107-110 mpg? You saying that is the mileage with that SUV?!

  26. 26
    Kattails says:

    TaMara, for “old ride” do you mean the car or the animal? They make trailers for horses ya know. Seriously, congrats, hope it works well for you.
    @Humdog: I agree with Trollhattan, 90K is a lot of miles for a 2016. My 2009 Honda Fit is still under 80K and I live in the country, although the first owner lived in a “city” (such as exist in NH). I’d be pretty wary.

  27. 27
    Brachiator says:

    @TaMara (HFG):

    But I must tell you, that buying a car like this requires a lot of education – the learning curve is exhausting.

    Congratulations on the new ride! Just reading the comments here is a bit exhausting, but useful if I ever get a similar vehicle.

  28. 28
    CliosFanBoy says:

    I have an earlier KIA Niro hybrid (not plug in) and I really like it..

  29. 29
    MobiusKlein says:

    I’m in the market for a plugin-hybrid too, will have to check it out.
    my almost 17 year old honda CRV is giving up the ghost in $1000 increments.

  30. 30
    CaseyL says:

    Nice new ride!

    But when you say “we” were outgrowing the old one, did you mean Scout, who is getting to be her full-grown size, or near to it?

  31. 31
    laura says:

    @trollhattan: the clouds actually look like a flowing river. Hope to be home early today and off the roads.

  32. 32
  33. 33

    @CliosFanBoy: Good to hear. You know that a day or two after a big purchase, lots of questioning if I’ve done the right thing. LOL

  34. 34
  35. 35
  36. 36
    Catherine D. says:

    A friend just bought a Tesla and they installed a quick charging station for it at home. They also have a full solar array on the house.

    It’s not really a car suited for winter, as far as I can tell. You can’t drive and run the heater, although the heated seats work ? And you can’t jack it up to change a tire. It needs a flatbed and a lift.

    I’ll stick with my 15 year old Element that just broke 50,000 miles.

  37. 37
    rikyrah says:

    @TaMara (HFG):

    Nancy Pelosi DUNKING on their ASS………….

    Stephen Miller was writing SOTU to blame Democrats for shutdown — until Nancy Pelosi pulled the rug out: reporthttps://t.co/L9wa22sKQ9 pic.twitter.com/sxane5ttW8

    — 3ChicsPolitico (@3ChicsPolitico) January 16, 2019

    Hope that works

  38. 38

    @sukabi: Thanks. My favorite story of the day. I tweeted it so I can embed here:

  39. 39
    Mnemosyne says:

    Sadly, as an apartment dweller, I wouldn’t be able to get an EC. I also drive so few miles that an EC isn’t really worth the extra cost right now. If G does get a good job with a longish commute, I may try and talk him into a gas hybrid to replace his almost 15 year-old Corolla.

  40. 40
    Spanky says:

    @TaMara (HFG): Mrs. Spanky went from a 2009 Honda Civic to a 2018 Toyota RAV-4 Hybrid, and will agree on the learning curve, even without the plug-in option.

    And I just got rid of a car with a cassette player – a 2003 Jetta. Buyer asked if it had a USB port. I LOLed.

  41. 41
    mad citizen says:

    Plug In America is an EV advocacy group if anyone wants a few more emails. They send about 1 per month.

    On 12/31 I and my 13 year old acura TL were rear ended. I was OK, but car was totalled. Replaced with a five year old lexus rx 350 with 53K miles. Wife sells at a national used car chain.

    My wife sold Saturns in their day, we had a few. I’m impressed hearing about a quarter century old one, but agree the newer cars always seem/are better.

  42. 42
    Mnemosyne says:

    @rikyrah:

    The only thing the Constitution says is that the President will report to Congress “from time to time.” IIRC, the State of the Union wasn’t usually an actual speech until Woodrow Wilson started doing them that way. So NDP is just being old school and asking him to send a report instead of making a televised appearance. Why do Republicans hate tradition? 😈

  43. 43
    mad citizen says:

    My ’05 TL had a cassette player and 6 CD player. I would forget about the cassette player but occasionally played something for technology nostalgia. The last one was a Muddy Waters Howling Wolf combo.

    Both of our vehicles now are SUVS getting 18/25 mpg. Is that bad? The Hyndai Kona is getting great reviews, but not widely available.

  44. 44

    @Spanky: I am feeling a little…guilty…I drove my other car (a Saturn, mad citizen) into the ground and still sold it for $1500 after 20 years. I had planned on doing the same with the Soul. And I kinda loved the Soul, but feeling good about this purchase, mostly. LOL

  45. 45
    Gravenstone says:

    @Pogonip: I think two Danes > one human, even if they’re in my own size range.

  46. 46
    different-church-lady says:

    In September 2018, Secretary Nielsen designated State of the Union Addresses as National Security Events…

    There is no smash quite like a Nancy smash.

  47. 47
    Spanky says:

    (Deputy Labour Leader Tom) Watson says he is not one of those people who questions Theresa May’s motives. He accepts she is motivated by duty, and that she is trying to honour the result of the referendum. But she has failed, and the failure is hers alone.

    He says he admires her resilience. Other people would not have been able to put up with the humiliations she has endured. But May has failed.

    He says she has no majority for her flagship policy, no authority, and no alternative. She lost the vote by 432 votes to 202. That is not a mere flesh wound, he says.

    He says May does not have the empathy or political skills to carry on as prime minister.

    Ouch! Love the Monty Python reference, though.
    (Guardian, btw)

  48. 48

    @Pogonip: Yesterday I filled the car for a fun test drive with friends. Two of them are well over 6 feet and one is 6’6″ – they were impressed with headroom.

    And yes, it fits two danes easily, but I doubt most people would want to ride with the back seats down and sprawled out. YMMV

  49. 49
    trollhattan says:

    @Spanky:

    And I just got rid of a car with a cassette player – a 2003 Jetta. Buyer asked if it had a USB port. I LOLed.

    Hilarious! “Does it have nav?” Pulls AAA map from glovebox.

    My last [sniff] Saab had cassette, in-dash CD and trunk CD changer. I was entertainment rich! What I really miss is the weatherband radio channel. Super handy.

  50. 50
    chris says:

    @TaMara (HFG):

    26 miles on battery alone.

    That’s it?!! Or a typo? Seems like a lot of expensive tech to move a day’s walk.

    Second the Kill-A-Watt meter. It’s an eye opener.

  51. 51
    Spanky says:

    @TaMara (HFG): Don’t feel guilty! The Jetta has 360K on it, and I still got $600.

    Granted, it’s a diesel. A smokin’, smokin’ diesel.

  52. 52
    trollhattan says:

    @TaMara (HFG):

    And yes, it fits two danes easily, but I doubt most people would want to ride with the back seats down and sprawled out. YMMV

    My kid would hop right in. You describe her idea of heaven.

  53. 53
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    @sukabi: Magnificent move by Pelosi. Anything that causes the vile Miller creature pain is good.

  54. 54
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    @Spanky: If both Labour and the Tories are reasonable, they’ll ditch Brexit and tell the Brexiteers to fuck the fuck off.

  55. 55
    Mnemosyne says:

    @trollhattan:

    I think we’re next in line for that, so the burn areas in Ventura County will probably start sliding down. Ugh.

    This is the one time of year when my Impreza’s all-wheel drive actually comes in handy.

  56. 56

    @chris: Yes, that 107 mpg was a real turn off.

  57. 57
    Mnemosyne says:

    @different-church-lady:

    There are few things more fun than using a conservative’s words against them and watching them try and wiggle away.

  58. 58
    Spanky says:

    @Villago Delenda Est: Reason seems to have fled the planet. I fully expect a no-deal Brexit to go through. And watch the show that that produces!

  59. 59
    Barbara says:

    @trollhattan: Since we are playing this game — I still own a 1991 Volvo, the car I used to bring my kids home from the hospital AND to take them to college! It’s been totaled once, because replacing the airbag made it cross the salvage value, so we took the proceeds and had it fixed. That was more than 10 years ago. It has 130,000 miles, but we no longer drive it out of town much. It doesn’t even have a radio! But it drives totally fine.

    We gave our 2001 Passat to our nephew, who still drives it around. That car had certain electrical issues that caused the battery to constantly run down. So we had a mechanic install a kill switch (the dealer refused!) which means you have to open the hood to start it.

  60. 60
    chris says:

    @TaMara (HFG): I guess I’m missing something here.

  61. 61
    Barbara says:

    @Spanky: Following the Guardian really makes the whole thing seem surreal. They just keep scoring the same old points at each other apparently indifferent to the fact that they are sailing the ship into an iceberg. I mean, it’s one of the few instances in which the expression rearranging the deck chairs on the Titanic seems totally apt — except it’s really more like they are arguing over the order of precedence into the first class dining room. I have read so much about Corbyn, but the last few days have made him seem inadequate to the job.

  62. 62

    @chris: Because it runs on battery and gas – it will run just on battery around town (most of my trips are less than 17 miles) when you need more distance or power (i.e. mountain driving for me) it kicks in the gasoline engine. It’s smart enough to do it on its own, but I can push a button for either mode.

    So you get a (well documented) 105-107 mpg.

    ETA: and just like a regular hybrid, it charges the battery as it goes, when the engine is running.

    A regular hybrid is usually about 50-60 mpg. A typical EV gets 90-150 miles on a charge.

    This SUV allows me to drive long distances that a straight EV wouldn’t and gets better mpg than a regular Hybrid. The cost difference was made up by a great dealer rebate and stellar state and fed rebates.

    So for me, it was the best of both worlds – considering I drive often to see my family (450 miles one-way) and have to have room for the beasts. :-)

  63. 63
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    @Spanky: They thought Churchill’s move back to the gold standard was bad. This will be worse.

  64. 64
    Haroldo says:

    @Barbara:

    Surreal is preciesly the word. It’s the ‘Guns of August’ without the gunpowder.

    Following the Guardian really makes the whole thing seem surreal. They just keep scoring the same old points at each other apparently indifferent to the fact that they are sailing the ship into an iceberg. I mean, it’s one of the few instances in which the expression rearranging the deck chairs on the Titanic seems totally apt — except it’s really more like they are arguing over the order of precedence into the first class dining room. I have read so much about Corbyn, but the last few days have made him seem inadequate to the job.

    I’ve come to the conclusion that ‘inadequate’ is selling Corbyn short – he’s much, much worse than that. I was hoping for leadership out of the Brexit mess, but what Labour (and the UK) has witnessed is pandering to the Leavers.

  65. 65
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    @Barbara: Corbyn really does seem to be every bit as clueless as Wilmer.

  66. 66
    chris says:

    @TaMara (HFG): OK, now I get it.

    If you want to ride in my 02 Camry you have to get in the back because Bert is my copilot and the doghair… Of course if you sit in the back he will join you.

  67. 67

    @chris: Freakin’ adorable. If I let Bixby ride in front, he’d try to drive. Wait, what am I saying? From the back seat he’s been known to try and drive, LOL.

  68. 68
    blackcatsrule says:

    @mad citizen: @Humdog: @TaMara (HFG): I’m still driving my 1997 Saturn! Just under 240,000 miles. Don’t EVER want to get rid of it.

  69. 69
    ruemara says:

    It’s beautiful, but it needs more dog in it.

  70. 70

    @blackcatsrule: Love mine. It was a stick, got great gas mileage. Seriously, those cars are workhorses. But never really fit more than one great dane at a time, and at the time I had three Danes.

  71. 71

    @ruemara: Agreed. I’m trying to make sure everyone gets their “joy ride” in it before I set it up for the dogs with the cover and everything.

  72. 72
    Barbara says:

    @TaMara (HFG): The downside of a hybrid is that you still have an engine. We drive a full electric most of the time and the biggest upside, which I did not understand when we bought it, is nearly no need for maintenance. The Tesla Model S has a range of around 210 miles. The new BMW has a range of 100 miles. They are outliers for now.

  73. 73
    blackcatsrule says:

    @TaMara (HFG): I so regret never learning to drive a stick. My friend agreed to buy his two daughters cars as long as they were stick shifts so they couldn’t text and drive.
    Yeah, Danes wouldn’t play well with a Saturn but my sweet much-missed pug fit right in the center of the back seat, all belted in and cozy. Gas mileage is still great but used to be even better before the ethanol added bullshit.

  74. 74
    Robert Sneddon says:

    @Villago Delenda Est: The British party system is, well, different from the American one. Corbyn is an old-school Labour Party member and he goes by the old political rules, that the leadership follows Labour Party Conference decisions and implements the manifesto as agreed by Conference when they come into power. Tony Blair tossed that concept in the skip when he got elected as the People’s Mandate (cf Charlie Stross). Corbyn’s return to Conference resolutions meaning something is one reason he’s popular with the regular Labour supporters who had been turned off by Tony’s New Labour/Third Way approach to things.

    The Tories also have a Conference but it’s more of a backstabbing and schmoozing affair with the leadership allowed to get on with running the country to the benefit of Conservative influencers, donors, family members etc. afterwards.

    Corbyn’s position on Brexit isn’t his own personal one, it’s what was thrashed during the Conference out in October — basically vote down the Tory deal unless it meets six tests (which it didn’t), don’t accept “no deal” at all and work for another popular vote/referendum. The bad news for all those disappointed he’s not somehow riding in to save the day is that he doesn’t have the votes to get what he wants passed by Parliament because he’s in the Opposition which is where you are if you are in a minority. You might as well ask why hasn’t Nancy Pelosi forced the US government to re-open already.

    If there is an election and he wins then he’s in charge and he can implement the will of the Conference. No deal is dead, the Withdrawal Agreement as negotiated by the Tories is dead, there might be a further referendum but he’s most likely to ask for an extension to Article 50, talk to the EU himself as PM with power to bring legislation to Parliament and then decide after carrying out a lot of consultation with other Party members and the Trade Unions which still have an important political role in the Labour Party.

  75. 75
    CliosFanBoy says:

    @TaMara (HFG): I got read-ended by a truck and came out fine. did more damage to the front of the truck.

  76. 76
    CliosFanBoy says:

    @Mnemosyne: I think Adams did it in person, then Jefferson abandoned it. then Wilson revived it. Supposedly Teddy was green with envy he didn;t think of it first.

  77. 77
    Martin says:

    My wife is considering a Niro. Let us know how you like it.

  78. 78
    miroker says:

    I need a new ride(1999 GMC with 260,000 miles on it, dashboard among other things falling apart), but since I am on disability due to health issues, my bills exceed my income and I have already blown through my savings paying off medical bills and surviving.

  79. 79
  80. 80
    catclub says:

    @Kattails: I always think that if they put on all those miles, they were all highway miles, which are the easiest on the car. I bet the brakes are still perfectly new ;).

  81. 81
    CliosFanBoy says:

    the one thing I do not like about my Niro, no CD player.

  82. 82
    catclub says:

    @Barbara: yeah, a hybrid with a 34 mile battery range would work perfectly for me.

    17 if I could charge while at work.

  83. 83
    Uncle Cosmo says:

    @Humdog: Most important question to ask is whether it’s been in an accident. There are some services (Carfax?) that can get you those records. Beware a vehicle that’s had significant repair work unless you have a competent & trustworthy mechanic to look it over for you.

    Next is how the 90K miles were put on. For a 2016 model, guesstimate 25K per year. If most of that was highway driving, you should be OK. OTOH if the owner essentially ran around town making the equivalent of local sales calls, the thing may be ready to drop. Again, competent & trustworthy mechanic is a must.

    I will be interested to follow TaMara’s experience with the Niro. I have a 2012 Forte that’s served me well other than gas mileage – does great on the hwy (36-38 mpg) but most of my trips are around town where I’m lucky to get over 23.

  84. 84
    NeenerNeener says:

    TaMara – is that Black or Gravity Blue? I’ve got the Gravity Blue version, but under most lighting it looks black. Is it an LX, EX or EX Premium? I ended up with an EX because none of the dealers near me had the EX Premium when I was ready to buy.
    I had a dryer outlet installed in my garage so I can charge in 2.5 hours, and then I had solar panels put on the house too!

    Enjoy your new car; I love the hell out of mine.

  85. 85
    jimmiraybob says:

    What? Not holding out for the coal-steam-whale blubber hybrid? Coal’s on a comeback ya know.

  86. 86
    ronp says:

    We have a Niro, it is just an awesome all around car. Safe, efficient, it supports Car Play and Android Auto. Enjoy!

  87. 87
    Mai Naem mobile says:

    @TaMara (HFG): I know the thread is kind of dead but is the Niro the size of the Soul or is it more the size of the larger Kia crossovers? The Niro in your pic looks big but I know pics can be decieving.

  88. 88
    CZAnne says:

    Hey, @TaMara (HFG), which dealership did you use? I’ve been happy with my Kia, and I liked Fisher in Boulder, but fisher sold the Kia side. It might be a good time to think of replacing my 9 yo Soul (65K miles) before Convention life takes over.

    I’d said I’d use whatever dealership is close, but that means the VW/Audi at Flatirons mall. No, thanks.

  89. 89

    @CliosFanBoy: I know I’m late coming back to check in – but OMG, so glad you’re okay!

    @Martin: Will do!

    @NeenerNeener: Gravity Blue EX premium (I really wanted heated seats) and so glad to hear that!

  90. 90

    @ronp: Yay!

    @Mai Naem mobile: It’s just enough bigger than the Soul to make the Danes comfy – most of that size is on the inside, we parked it side-by-side with the Soul when I test drove, and it practically the same length.

    @CZAnne: I did 1-25 Kia (if you go there, you must ask for John G – just very low key). I refuse to do service there, though. I’ll have to figure that out.

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