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Old 06-17-2013, 10:10 AM
PawsibleDogs PawsibleDogs is offline
Crazy Dog Nerd
Join Date: Jan 2013
Location: Indiana
Posts: 30
Default Rental Cars - Thoughts?

So my van had an unfortunate run-in with a deer last week, and the insurance company is covering a rental car for me. I'm looking to downsize from a van in the future anyway (or sooner rather than later if they total it out, which is looking likely), so I'm hoping to use this as an opportunity to really test out a vehicle I might like to consider buying.

If I need to work with this particular rental car location, my most appealing options are Chevy Cruze, Toyota Yaris, and the Mazda3. Any thoughts/experience with any of those are definitely appreciated. I currently have an 60-90 minute commute to work 5x a week, so reasonably good gas mileage, fun/comfortable to drive, and safety [because, y'know, deer] are my biggest priorities for the moment.

Long-term, I'm looking for a vehicle that is practical to haul at least 2 200-size crates (24" long), preferably out of a crumple zone, is on the smaller side (I end up doing a fair bit of alley driving which is very un-fun with my mini van), gets ~30+ MPG combined, and a 2010-2013 with reasonable mileage can be had for under ~15k.

Possibilities I've considered long-term (but haven't had a chance to really check out/test drive in person, so they may be chucked at that point) include the Mazda2, Chevy Spark or Sonic, and the Honda Fit, to give you an idea of the style/etc I like the look of.

I don't generally need my backseat, so if it's a hatch back that needs to have the back seats folded down to accommodate the 2 crates that's fine -- I'm also looking at the possibility of Roadies or similar for shorter trips / more packing constraints.
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