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Old 09-06-2008, 05:11 AM   #51
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Well, for that matter if you're looking at an old Dodge Omni turned pickup truck how about that pickup that VW made for a few years in the 80's from a Rabbit, and I think you can get them in a diesel as well. A diesel Rabbit p/u probably does at least 40 MPG if driven reasonably.

-Jay
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Old 09-06-2008, 09:35 AM   #52
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Well, for that matter if you're looking at an old Dodge Omni turned pickup truck how about that pickup that VW made for a few years in the 80's from a Rabbit, and I think you can get them in a diesel as well. A diesel Rabbit p/u probably does at least 40 MPG if driven reasonably.

-Jay
Price, i've honestly seen them going for $6000 out here, ifn i can find a Rampage, i suspect i'd have to work to pay more than $500 for it. I'm just amazed how little improvement here is in fuel mileage when you see this:

99 Kia Sephia 21/28/24
85 Dodge Charger 26/36/30

Gee, fourteen years of improvements.
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Old 09-06-2008, 11:40 AM   #53
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fourteen years of cars getting bigger and safer and supposubly better for the environment.

air bags (sometimes 4, 6, or 8 of them) and emissions (supposed to be getting better) have killed gas mileage. check out some cars from across the pond and you will see what 14 years of improvements will actually do. their cars are getting 50s and 60s for MPG but I wouldn't want to live in europe for other reasons.
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Old 09-06-2008, 12:11 PM   #54
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Emissions killed mileage big time. My 74 Chevy pickup with a 350 V-8, 4bbl carb, TH350 automatic tranny and a/c regularly got over 20 MPG, and it did almost 30 MPG on the highway... And that was 20 years old with over 300,000 miles on it.
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Old 09-06-2008, 01:28 PM   #55
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Quote:
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99 Kia Sephia 21/28/24
85 Dodge Charger 26/36/30
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fourteen years of cars getting bigger and safer and supposubly better for the environment.
...don't forget more powerful.

99 Kia Sephia: 125hp
85 Dodge Charger: 96hp

That extra 30hp is 1/3 more power.

Add in emissions (having gone from very basic requirements to pretty much the same as we have today), a lot of weight, probably lower gearing, and the fact that Chrysler (as much as they sucked in 1985) sucked nowhere near as bad as Kia did in 1999. Kia was still struggling to get some market share in 1999 through selling cars at a lower purchase price than anyone else. Purchase price was the bottom line for Kia at that time.
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Old 09-06-2008, 02:29 PM   #56
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if you want to see a low emissions 80's vehicle? Look at Rusty's garage entry. His latest emissions test is posted there. I think its a lot better than many new vehicles.

-Jay
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Old 09-06-2008, 10:44 PM   #57
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I forgot about horsepower. that brings up the wildfire. I just like that car.

it is really impractical for a lot of people (including myself) the fact is that it gets around emissions and safety because it is considered a motorcycle.

this was just an after thought. I am not suggesting this vehicle for your particular needs. I like the vibe personally. it will haul a descent amount and you can get one for less than the matrix because you aren't paying for the toyota badging. just make sure you get the one with the 1.8 and not the 2.4 I think they also have an all wheel drive version but it is sporty and MPG suffers.

on a side note: my wife has a honda element and has seen almost 26 MPG. hers is AWD too. if you could get your hands on a 2WD version, you may see more than that. she does have a grill block but no scangauge and she does baby it.

good luck on your choice
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Old 09-07-2008, 08:56 PM   #58
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this was just an after thought. I am not suggesting this vehicle for your particular needs. I like the vibe personally. it will haul a descent amount and you can get one for less than the matrix because you aren't paying for the toyota badging. just make sure you get the one with the 1.8 and not the 2.4 I think they also have an all wheel drive version but it is sporty and MPG suffers.

on a side note: my wife has a honda element and has seen almost 26 MPG. hers is AWD too. if you could get your hands on a 2WD version, you may see more than that. she does have a grill block but no scangauge and she does baby it.

good luck on your choice
Thanks, and definitely feel free to make suggestions, the point of this thread is that i'm heavily though not exclusively considering a small extend cab pickup to serve my needs or possibly a small SUV (Blazer, Explorer, Escape maybe Vitara (had some problems with a Sidekick)). Basically it needs to be relatively inexpensive to buy, and easy to repair (i can do basics, but gotta pay a shop to do the rest, and labor is the killer), along with being reliable, it'll be getting some 200 miles a day put on it M-F. The Kia manages all of this, but it seems to be running on the ragged edge of its capability, its definitely not quite enough vehicle.
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