I was pulling 15-16 in the city with my car before finding this site. Last tank was 30. I believe that any car can have significant gains in MPG.
Safety should be primary on your concern list, with that said power steering may not be a big deal when the vehicle is rolling at 30-40MPH. Would need to be tested in a safe area by the person who will be driving to determine agility without the engine running.
That VW looks like a fun car!
I don't want to start a big argument, but according to my last gas tank my car gets 68 percent of the mileage your car gets, weighs almost twice as much, cost 4000 dollars, and is a classic to boot.
As much as I love the Yaris (most attractive I saw at the state fair) when put up against my car at 10,000 miles a year it would take 30 years for a yaris to break even in cost of ownership. Granted that is all other things equal, I am sure that in 30 years there will be more maintenance on my car than yours. But even if I spent another 4000 over the 30 years it would cut it down to 17 years before breaking even.
Unless I am missing something. Please let me know if I am.
This is a gas saving site. One could assume the prime directive is to save gas. Ok, I share that directive, therefore I drive a Yaris and get 45+ MPG on average.
Perhaps the real question you need to ask yourself is this: Do I need a Truck; the type of vehicle that is your old LandCruiser? If you need the utility, and need what it offers often, then go for it! The Yaris is not going to give you the utility that your LandCruiser will.
Not about you, but lets face it: Most truck/suv owners do not need the capacity of their vehicles. For these folks, it would be better to rent such vehicles for the few times they need that capacity/performance.
So if you really need the capacity, and use it often and in such a frequency that renting such a vehicle would cost more, then go for it...otherwise, you're putting lipstick on a pig. ;-)
By the way, it is not unreasonable to expect 250,000 miles from the Yaris, stock, with no mods, 87 gas, 45+ MPG, and with nearly power everything it costs just $13,100, and the maintenence of this car is very low in cost, so are tires, etc.......but it's not a truck of course. And if I drove the Yaris like you drive your LandCruiser to get 30 MPG, then I should get around 55-60 MPG.
When in college, I had a 1966 Suburban that I bought for $100. Granted, gas was about $1.40 / gallon then...and I never really checked what it got...but I took a lesson from Star Trek: I had a shuttle craft parked in back. I would drive to a central location in Bloomington, IN...park the truck, get the bike out and ride. This avoided dying on the highways (big concern), biking up the large hills (good use of gasoline, IMHO), made for easier parking and got some exercise. Thought about putting a small moped or bike in back, and cut some of your running around?
McIntyre's First Law: "Under the right circumstances, anything I tell you may be wrong."
O'Brien's First Corollary to McIntyre's First Law: "I don't know what the right circumstances are, either."