> "[...] I won't be parting with my Q4 to save 10mpg for a lesser variant & pay £5k more for the privilege"
The wisdom of these words is so real! ...
I got some insurance quotes the other day. About 1650 GBP for a GT 2L JTS, a little over 900 for a 159 TBi - even though the most expensive to buy - and in between for a 159 2.2 or 3.2. Then I thought, just as an exercise, I'd check the used prices of something sensible like a new model 2L Mazda 6 auto (155hp). A nice 2013 low miler costs somewhere in the region of 18.5-21.5. And, while I didn't check, I'm sure insurance would be circa the same as a 159 TBi.
I was thinking of maybe buying a 2008 GT Blackline 2L JTS Selespeed with 42K miles. That was until being quoted 1/6th of the asking price for annual insurance, ie, almost double the cost of insuring a 159 TBi with an asking price of 80% more.
There are two 2008 159 3.2 Q4's for sale right now, both with less than 60K miles, with asking prices 20% more than the GT, and 30% less than a couple of low mileage 2011 TBi's, and more than 20% less than a couple of 2011 2.2 Selespeed TI's.
...The difference in purchase prices, insurance costs, and at least in the case of the 2011 cars, higher depreciation, we're talking a lot of additional costs in order to (hopefully) make significant savings at the fuel pump. And that's before taking into account the decrease in enjoyment in having a "lesser" car.
That said, I don't want to throw more money at fuel than I have too, and I don't want to have to worry about using the car, but also, I don't want to have to drive like the proverbial nun to get good economy.
My last car was a 2010 1.8 Skoda Superb with 7 speed DSG, and I always drove it with the instantaneous fuel usage reading on the centre information display between the speed and rev dials, constantly varying the throttle position to maximise economy. If I didn't, and drove normally, the fuel usage would dramatically plunge! And even driving like a nun, although it was possible to get up to 50 mpg on a run, but usually lucky to get 40, the average was low 30's! Going up hills, in particular, sucked fuel, and there are a lot of hills to go up. Less than ideal road surfaces also sucked fuel, and there are many such roads.
I didn't get any pleasure driving like a nun to save fuel, except when one day I somehow managed to get 50mpg on a run. However, that was a short-lived 'pleasure'.
Previously, I drove a Honda V6 with the boot full of junk, and I'd get 17+mpg around town no matter what. Although I didn't do many miles, so fuel economy wasn't a major concern.
My feeling is that a V6 effectively uses less fuel when being pushed, or under load, like going up a hill, but also can't get really good economy either.
I have to take fuel consumption into account, because I now do so many more miles than I used to.
But my feeling is that these modern turbo cars really chew fuel under load, and, as I said, these days, I have a lots of hills to climb, one hill in particular is really a mountain that rises relatively steeply for, I dunno, something like 10 miles. Am I wrong to think that a 3.2 V6 would chew less fuel than a 1.8 turbo on such a road? And, therefore, maybe under such conditions the V6 wouldn't be that much more uneconomical?
I so desperately want to get back to getting some real pleasure out of driving. I think a 159 3.2 Q4 would do the trick, as long as it doesn't break the bank at the gas station. I guess I could always convert to LPG.
Man, if only I didn't need to drive that many miles on a regular basis, and I could just buy the Maserati of my dreams without thinking about running costs...
But back to reality, the so-called poor man's Quattroporte seems to be calling me. (I've lived without having my own car for nearly a year now, and really need to have a second car in the family within the next 3 weeks.) Hopefully I can find a good one for the right money.