As the title says, I have a rental car that I am driving and I'd like to do a review. When I rent a car, I try to figure out if it's a vehicle I'd buy or recommend. I also try to rent the ones that have my curiosity as a car for me/family/friends future. So, I ask for a specific/particular vehicle when I reserve the vehicle. I'll usually have several vehicles on my radar. This time, I am interested in the Chevy Cruze, Hyundai Elantra, KIA Forte and the Forte is the one the rental car agency gave me.
In the next year or so, my daughter(2006 Mazda3/155K mile) will be looking for another vehicle. So, I'm testing now when ever I get the chance to rent vehicle while on a trip.
Let me say that this is the typical rental car trimline(33k miles) with the standard engine which is the 2.0L 147hp(not the 2.0 160hp) and 6spd auto. It also has aluminum wheels with 205-55-16 Kumho Solus TA31.
Also IMOH, this car is in need of a rental replacement as it doesn't seem to have been maintained very well. The front end alignment is out and the steering wheel is off to the left at about 2-3 min to 12 o'clock and pulls to the right. The front tire(s) are growling a bit.
*Loud interior(even despite the tires) as there is too much road & wind noise.
*The ride is a bit firm over broken pavement with little road absorption and a bit noisy as well and the tail tends to hop a bit over those road irregularities(std beam axle rear). I'll check the tire PSI as they all seem to have way too much air. I'll check back.
*Seat comfort is only OK and could use some more standard adjustments.
*Standard 4 speaker radio is kinda' tinny and difficult to find tone adjustments. All 4 speakers are in the front(doors/dash) nothing in the rear.
*MPG-jury is still out!
*This 147 hp engine screws! I'm not kidding and I don't care what the PRESS reviews say about only being adequate. It's more than that! It doesn't need the more powerful/less MPG 2.0L GDI. And I can't answer for MPG yet but, I am curious!
*The 6spd auto tranny works very well with this engine and doesn't call any attention to itself except at WOT where, after letting off the accelerator pedal, the revs hang on a bit.
*View outward is decent(better than Mazda3) but, not as good as some others but not bad. If anything, the rear headrests are the culprit in the rear. Again, not bad.
*Cruises on the highway nicely and at 70+MPH to keep up with traffic. Getting there is easy
*Rommy trunk & rear seat with center fold down armrest/2 cup holders plus 1/ea door
*MPG-jury is still out!
Just a mention:
*The steering isn't as bad as the PRESS makes it out, and this is with the alignment issue that I mentioned.
*The ECO, Normal & SPORT modes are all hard to distinguish between any of them. IDK, I'd have to play with them more than I have time for. And I'm really not sure if I notice anything or not!...sometimes, sometimes not but, it's sooooo small of a difference that I'm actually NOT SURE.
I don't think I'd buy or recommend this trim line however, other trimlines may change my opinion. The road noise alone is a deal breaker for me. I want to check it's sibling the Hyundai Elantra to compare.
I'm not really interested in the overstyled CIVIC or the loud/noisy/harsh riding Mazda 3. Looking for vehicles that are better in "everydayness"/"normalness" for the way we drive 90 something % of the time. Not vehicles that are only used(winding mountain road/hard corners) the few % of the ownership.