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post #26 of 46 (permalink) Old 12-29-2019, 09:49 PM
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I have a 150lb Great Dane and a 60lb Doberman. For short rides, I drive a 2009 Subaru Impreza with the back seat down and a barrier to keep the dogs in back. They have plenty of space, could easily fit a third dog, but it isn't super safe to have dogs loose which is why I tend to only use it for shorter trips, and because my Doberman will annoy my Dane. For longer trips, I have a 2007 Volvo XC90. I have a Vario barrier and gate in the cargo area for my Dane, and the Doberman sits in the middle seat with a barrier between the middle and front seats. I could fit a 36" crate in either car to contain my Doberman, but I haven't due to visibility issues and because it would force my Dane too close to the slanted hatchback in the Subaru. Both cars have been pretty good and reliable with decent gas mileage considering they are both 4WD/AWD.
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post #27 of 46 (permalink) Old 12-30-2019, 07:56 AM Thread Starter
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Thank you! I definitely will be checking out the Facebook group today!

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Originally Posted by brw1982 View Post
I would not recommend a Wrangler. My sister has a brand new 4-door Wrangler and she struggles to fit her Lab and GSD in it. There's really not much room inside for the amount of space the overall vehicle occupies.

No joke, she could more easily fit them in the car she traded off for it - a 3-yr old Ford Focus hatchback. The dogs fit and she still had room for gear and luggage.

Doubly unfortunate is that both of her dogs are seniors and really struggle with getting in and out of her Wrangler. The Lab is arthritic and will reluctantly use a ramp, but the GSD won't even use the ramp (probably unsurprisingly, he has some fairly serious hip issues). So, the GSD has to be lifted in and out, which requires my brother-in-law to do it because he's too big for my sister.

Wranglers are attractive but not a car I would personally consider if you have multiple large dogs.

If I were in the market for a primary dog car, I'd probably be looking at Honda Pilots if I wanted an SUV, otherwise I'd be comparing mini vans or station wagons.

The dog car group on Facebook that Rosemary mentioned is a really good reference for how people make various vehicle types work.

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post #28 of 46 (permalink) Old 12-30-2019, 07:59 AM Thread Starter
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Thank you so much for the advice/info! I am not a car person by any means and your post was very informative so again, thank you!!!!

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Originally Posted by Beaumont67 View Post
I am a vehicle geek - 45 years of collecting/restoring, buying/selling & enjoying the auto world...my brand selection, has been refined to take into account ROI, reliability & long term expenses.
a) I refuse to buy brand new...but finding gems in the private market, is a hobby of mine
b) I won't buy anything from the TOP3 Detroit makers...with the exception of 2003-07c Silverado 4x4 pickups
- I religiously review known problems on makes I interested in...and pick accordingly
c) in SUV's I will only buy Japan makes / but even Honda sourced bad engines from China Motors, and heavy piston ring oil consumption is not covered under warranty
d) So only LEXUS or TOYOTA here in 4x4 or AWD...and v6 better than 4 cyl. turbo.
- son has a 2015 Lexus RX350 v6, he bought new
- wife drives a 2008 RAV4 Limited, v6
- dad drives a 2000 4Runner SR5, v6 // now downgraded for my winter DD'er
- plus I have a good weather truck, Imported into Canada...a mint 2003 Silverado LS, Quadrasteer (with 4 wheel steer) and 4x4 selectable transfer case
e) Gas mileage is important for wife work car, and we use her RAV4 as a family vehicle

So while a $70k budget is awesome, I tend to get the same drive (just older)...for 20 cents on the dollar, nice used.
- few questions to ask / 4Runners are full frame which I like...but likely harder on gas, than a Highlander or Lexus RX350
- for the money, Kia is making some real good vehicles now...I generally don't even consider Ford, most GM's and Chrysler or Jeep anymore.
(just to many faults to chase, if you get a bad one brand new...seems like lots of lemon brands, to avoid)

I don't look for all the bells and whistles, proven designs is what I prefer.
- and power train designs, that will stand the test of time...Engineered for 300k trouble free miles
- Toyota 3.5L v6 and GM Vortec (5.3L, 6.0L and 6.2L) are hard to beat (without Active Fuel Management BS)

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post #29 of 46 (permalink) Old 12-30-2019, 08:01 AM Thread Starter
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Oh yes, that is the huge factor: the Colorado weather. And considering I practically drive across the Springs to get to work at least five times a week (possibly more if I'm needed for the weekends), I probably need something that can withstand the randomness of the weather here!

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I have an old Toyota Sienna minivan. Plenty of room inside, but it drives like a boat in the snow. No traction and it fishtails with the best (worst?) of them. It's got 180,000 miles on it and is reliable with fairly minimal repairs (just the kind you would expect with its age), but I really wouldn't recommend it for Colorado unless you are in a position where you can just stay home if the weather is bad.

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post #30 of 46 (permalink) Old 12-30-2019, 08:04 AM Thread Starter
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How is the mileage, if you don't mind me asking? I'm also in the Springs and I live on the west side, near Gate 3 of Carson and I have to drive to Schriever every day for work.

And I was looking at getting that dog barrier too! My malamute/husky boy finds that he must climb the seat to be near me even when I've tried using a leash buckle!

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I recently purchased a used Flex Limited AWD as a dedicated dog vehicle. Since it isn't my daily driver I was a little less concerned about gas mileage and size (although it gets comparable mileage to my Tucson), and the big American boat seats are super comfortable. I kind of feel like I'm swimming in them Anyway, it fits a Variocage double XXL+ behind the second row of seats, leaving the entire second row free for my gear when I travel. I'm not quite at the point that I wanted a cargo van or box truck type setup, and I'm pretty happy with the Flex so far. I have taken it to training a few times and the dogs have no issue getting in the crates. I have transported up to four dogs in it with no issue--the smallest of which was 60 pounds. One side of the crate has a cut-to-size 1/2" yoga mat and the other has a dog bed, both with a quilt over them. I like that if I need to use the vehicle for something not-dog related I have plenty of space for passengers or groceries or whatnot. A good backup vehicle.
ETA I have driven this in our last few snowstorms (I am in the Springs) and have had less issue than my 4wd Tucson, I think in part because of the weight. This thing is great in the snow.

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post #31 of 46 (permalink) Old 12-30-2019, 08:06 AM Thread Starter
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Thank you! My boyfriend had told me to look at Subaru's but I thought they seemed on the smaller side.

And 4WD/AWD drive is definitely a must for me!

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Originally Posted by scorning View Post
I have a 150lb Great Dane and a 60lb Doberman. For short rides, I drive a 2009 Subaru Impreza with the back seat down and a barrier to keep the dogs in back. They have plenty of space, could easily fit a third dog, but it isn't super safe to have dogs loose which is why I tend to only use it for shorter trips, and because my Doberman will annoy my Dane. For longer trips, I have a 2007 Volvo XC90. I have a Vario barrier and gate in the cargo area for my Dane, and the Doberman sits in the middle seat with a barrier between the middle and front seats. I could fit a 36" crate in either car to contain my Doberman, but I haven't due to visibility issues and because it would force my Dane too close to the slanted hatchback in the Subaru. Both cars have been pretty good and reliable with decent gas mileage considering they are both 4WD/AWD.
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post #32 of 46 (permalink) Old 12-30-2019, 09:52 AM
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Everyone's needs are different but for me I have to have a truck because I tow fairly frequently. I am a Toyota fan so I have a tundra 4x4 crewmax with a camper top. It works great with the dogs. They can either be in the back seat or bed under the camper top. I have had 5 dobes in the cab with the back seats folded up and could have 3 more in 36" crates in the bed if I needed. If I didn't need a truck I would probably have a "dog van" like a lot of other people.
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post #33 of 46 (permalink) Old 12-30-2019, 10:03 AM Thread Starter
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Thank you for the insight! I know I said I'd prefer an SUV but I am not opposed to a truck so this gives me a good view!

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Everyone's needs are different but for me I have to have a truck because I tow fairly frequently. I am a Toyota fan so I have a tundra 4x4 crewmax with a camper top. It works great with the dogs. They can either be in the back seat or bed under the camper top. I have had 5 dobes in the cab with the back seats folded up and could have 3 more in 36" crates in the bed if I needed. If I didn't need a truck I would probably have a "dog van" like a lot of other people.

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post #34 of 46 (permalink) Old 12-30-2019, 10:21 PM
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How is the mileage, if you don't mind me asking? I'm also in the Springs and I live on the west side, near Gate 3 of Carson and I have to drive to Schriever every day for work.

And I was looking at getting that dog barrier too! My malamute/husky boy finds that he must climb the seat to be near me even when I've tried using a leash buckle!
Hey, cool! I live up near UCCS. I have a 2011 and the city mileage is meh. I get 15-16 generally if I drive it to work and back (Academy/Voyager or Union/Research), but highway it'll easily jump to 20+. I haven't gone further than Denver, so the mpg is an average when factoring in my relatively crappy city MPG (I also let it idle a lot to get warm, I'm a Cali native and its been cold). I guess in short, I don't know how it would do on just highway commutes or--as I intend--on longer roadtrips. It certainly wont do worse than my '08 Tucson's 16.8 mpg to Grand Junction last month. A newer version might get better mileage. I was also considering a truck and still really want one for home reno projects, but for a dog car was a little concerned about the elements, even with a topper.

Harnesses and seatbelts are a no-go for my crew. It turns to chaos in a quick hurry
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post #35 of 46 (permalink) Old 12-31-2019, 08:47 AM Thread Starter
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Ooh, good to know! I do a Denver trip maybe once a month but that's more in the summer because who wants to drive on I-25 in the winter with the holiday rush! I think my current car gets like 12 MPH so that's still an improvement over mine!

My female is fine in the car. She likes her seat (she's a bit of a diva) and will just watch the scenery as we're driving or she curls up and goes to sleep. My boy, aka Doofus/Moon Moon (that's not his real name, I promise!) has to look out of every window! Apparently one window is not good enough for him.....

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Hey, cool! I live up near UCCS. I have a 2011 and the city mileage is meh. I get 15-16 generally if I drive it to work and back (Academy/Voyager or Union/Research), but highway it'll easily jump to 20+. I haven't gone further than Denver, so the mpg is an average when factoring in my relatively crappy city MPG (I also let it idle a lot to get warm, I'm a Cali native and its been cold). I guess in short, I don't know how it would do on just highway commutes or--as I intend--on longer roadtrips. It certainly wont do worse than my '08 Tucson's 16.8 mpg to Grand Junction last month. A newer version might get better mileage. I was also considering a truck and still really want one for home reno projects, but for a dog car was a little concerned about the elements, even with a topper.

Harnesses and seatbelts are a no-go for my crew. It turns to chaos in a quick hurry
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post #36 of 46 (permalink) Old 01-03-2020, 09:13 AM
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I'm a 35+ year automotive professional. I currently own an auto body repair facility. Out of your 2 choices, I would recommend the 4 Runner, you can't go wrong with a Toyota. Happy car shopping!
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post #37 of 46 (permalink) Old 01-03-2020, 09:17 AM Thread Starter
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Thank you!

Now for my least favorite thing to do: actually going out to the dealerships......

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I'm a 35+ year automotive professional. I currently own an auto body repair facility. Out of your 2 choices, I would recommend the 4 Runner, you can't go wrong with a Toyota. Happy car shopping!

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post #38 of 46 (permalink) Old 01-03-2020, 09:42 AM
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Yuki ! I think I find your next ride girlfriend

It's a classic to boot ! This would turn heads when you pull in to show !


https://www.google.com/search?q=1974...tstV3mAs1q4VM:
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post #39 of 46 (permalink) Old 01-03-2020, 09:57 AM
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Yuki ! I think I find your next ride girlfriend

It's a classic to boot ! This would turn heads when you pull in to show !


https://www.google.com/search?q=1974...tstV3mAs1q4VM:
Ugh... reminds me too much of the '73 Chrysler Newport we had. That car and I hated each other.
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post #40 of 46 (permalink) Old 01-03-2020, 10:01 AM Thread Starter
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Ha!

I was planning on driving my dad's '83 Trans Am to shows but it might be a little too loud......

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Yuki ! I think I find your next ride girlfriend

It's a classic to boot ! This would turn heads when you pull in to show !


https://www.google.com/search?q=1974...tstV3mAs1q4VM:
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post #41 of 46 (permalink) Old 01-03-2020, 10:35 AM
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Ha!

I was planning on driving my dad's '83 Trans Am to shows but it might be a little too loud......
Now that's funny Yuki - I have a 81 T/A
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post #42 of 46 (permalink) Old 01-03-2020, 10:43 AM
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Ugh... reminds me too much of the '73 Chrysler Newport we had. That car and I hated each other.
Just for you Rosemary -

https://www.google.com/search?q=73+c...HeZn_cr9p-1XM:
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post #43 of 46 (permalink) Old 01-03-2020, 12:15 PM
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That's a New Yorker. This is a Newport. Ours was this shade of brown, but it had a black top, not a white one.

https://images.app.goo.gl/u4AwYxRreVGTWUMg8
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post #44 of 46 (permalink) Old 01-03-2020, 06:25 PM
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That's a New Yorker. This is a Newport. Ours was this shade of brown, but it had a black top, not a white one.

https://images.app.goo.gl/u4AwYxRreVGTWUMg8
Hmm... actually, this is what we had... This color, even. I always thought it was a '73, but this one say's it's a '72. Maybe Daddy bought it in '73?

https://flic.kr/p/pG2zam

I remember that to reach the carburetor I had to pretty much climb into the engine compartment, and the close the hood, I had to stand on the bumper. I learned how to drive in this behemoth and a '70 Ford Pinto Pony.
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post #45 of 46 (permalink) Old 01-05-2020, 07:34 AM
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When I was looking at SUVs a couple years ago, I came across the chevy Traverse and liked how spacious it was. Much to Radar's dismay, my budget was more in the equinox range, so he gets a downgrade in space.

I would go with something full size, like a suburban or something. If Saturn makes a full size, I would look into it. Those are the smallest looking biggest cars I have ever seen.

Good luck!

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post #46 of 46 (permalink) Old 01-06-2020, 08:01 AM Thread Starter
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Thank you! I had test driven both the Traverse and the Equinox but for some reason, I just didn't like the feel. Luckily the boyfriend has a Tahoe so I got to play around with that. I do like that but he barely can fit his car in the garage so that's a slight concern for me. That and I have a feeling he's going to give me some payback since I made fun of him for having such a large car for just him and his dog (also named Tahoe....he's not very creative in the naming aspect.....)

I don't think Saturn makes cars anymore and honestly, I don't think I'd want another one!

Quote:
Originally Posted by RADAR2017 View Post
When I was looking at SUVs a couple years ago, I came across the chevy Traverse and liked how spacious it was. Much to Radar's dismay, my budget was more in the equinox range, so he gets a downgrade in space.

I would go with something full size, like a suburban or something. If Saturn makes a full size, I would look into it. Those are the smallest looking biggest cars I have ever seen.

Good luck!

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