Big guy in an STI, 2017 Hyundai Elantra vs Civic vs Corolla and You’re paid for your opinions! [Ask Nathan]

Roman and Nathan

In this week’s “Ask Nathan”

This first question comes from a fan who’s looking to get a fast, fun car – but he’s a big guy. Interesting.


Hello Nathan, I got a question for you.

My name is Bryan and, well, I am a big guy and I love fast cars. I currently have a 2013 VW Golf TDI that hopefully will be going back to VW (love the car, but left bad taste in my mouth).

I am contemplating new cars and I am torn. I’d love me an STI, but with me being a heavy guy, I am not sure I will fit, at least comfortably. My other options are a little more than I would like to spend, but they are the Dodge Charger Scat Pack and the Chevy SS. I was raised Chevy, and love the LS motor. I don’t know why the Charger caught my eye but it did. Is there anything else you might recommend? I love the SS and think it’s a great car from what I have read. I don’t want to go no performance, but if I don’t do either of those, I will probably do a Impala or a Malibu. Just looking for ideas!

Any help you can give me would be greatly appreciated, thank you sir.

Chevy SS 14 front 2

A: Greetings Bryan!

I’m a pretty big guy too and the front seat of the WRX and STI were pretty comfortable for me. I suggest taking one for a test drive. Don’t test the Impreza as it has different seats! Despite my limited access to the WRX, I still consider it a performance bargain and a great alternative to American muscle.

I hear what you’re saying about the other possibilities: some are less enjoyable to drive than others. If you want the feel of a big V8, then – yes – the Charger is the way to go. I like the Chevy SS and you might find some deals on them being that few people purchase them, which is a pity.

While I like the Impala and Malibu, they are not as much fun to drive as the Charger; however, they are spacious, economical and are pretty athletic.

At the end of the day, you truly must test drive all of them. Many are in rental fleets and it’s worth a few bucks to drive one for a few days, even if it’s an inferior trim level.

Hope that helps!


2016 Honda Civic vs 2017 Hyundai Elantra

This next question is from a fan who’s challenging the 2017 Hyundai Elantra vs Civic vs Corolla vs Mazda3.

Q: Advice Needed!

I’m in the market for a new car, but I don’t have much of a budget. I’d like to stay as close to $10,000 as possible, but I’ve noticed a few options that are a bit tempting.

My main concerns are reliability/longevity and efficiency. I’ve looked at the used market place and have been considering cars such as the Civic, Mazda3 and Corolla. Then I noticed I can buy a 2017 Hyundai Elantra SE for a pretty good price currently. That’s just a random dealership near me, but they all seem to be offering a similar deal on them right now.

Aside from that, I have an extra discount from Nissan of about $1,000 for any new vehicle. Unfortunately, that only leaves me with the Versa Note in my budget.

I love your YouTube channel. I think you guys are the best around and I would really appreciate your input and advice here.

What would you do if you were me? What car would you guys be buying and what year?

Thanks again!

2017 Hyundai Elantra sedan

A: Hi Shane – great question!

I have yet to drive the 2017 Hyundai Elantra, but our man Alex has and he feels it’s a solid car that’s not as much fun as competing vehicles to drive. My past experiences with Elantras matches Alex’s perspective in many ways. You can’t beat the warranty and, if you hold off on extras, you can score one for a good price – just like you showed me.

Hyundais are very competitive with Japanese brands and are a solid investment. Be cautious as there are TONS of options that can push the price way up. Hyundai has a good reputation for quality now, but they also have a reputation for finding ways to sell a $20,000 car for $30,000. Be wary of salespeople and look online on message boards about buying experiences.

If you get frustrated looking for new cars in your price zone, head to Toyota, Mazda or Honda’s CPO (Certified Pre-Owned) websites. You can find great deals on vehicles that have the automaker’s stamp of approval and a good warranty.

Hope that helps!


The last question comes from an angry viewer who feels that TFLcar and TFLtruck are paid off for our positive opinions about the vehicles we’re invited to drive.

tatra prague to pebble or bust video project kickstarter reward

That’s it, I’m calling bull—- on you and the rest of the TFL team!

It’s so obvious that every time you or Roman get invited to a car event you sing the car or trucks praises! I read your review on the truck page and you totally kissed up to Nissan! You basically said the new Nissan Titan you drove was amazing! Well my friend, you seemed to dislike the Nissan Titan XD a little while ago and its basically the same truck. So how much did Nissan pay you to give the Titan a positive review!!?

I bet you’ll never post this or answer the question!


(Via Twitter)

A: I like the part at the end of your rant where you manage to troll and bait me to re-post your question.

Chip, here’s my standard, snarky answer to people who call me, or any member of my TFL team a paid liar; because that’s exactly what you’re calling me. Right?

Nissan pays me exactly what Toyota pays you to call me a liar.

Now that I have that out of the way; allow me to elucidate: while we do accept travel, room/accommodations and food from the automaker who’s hosting the event, no payment (of any kind) is ever exchanged. Sure, it’s great to wine and dine in a nice hotel, we (the TFL crew) work harder to get the best coverage than any other outlet I know. If all we do it “sing praises” we wouldn’t bother working as hard as we do to get unique coverage – we would just rehash the automaker’s propaganda.

As for my first impressions of the 2017 Nissan Titan 1/2 ton (which is a COMPLETELY different truck than the Nissan Titan XD), I stand by my assessments both good and bad. I never said I disliked the Nissan Titan XD either. I have a feeling you didn’t read my whole review, but that’s no biggie because my assessment is full of lies – right?

I cannot change your mind or debate with what you think, all I can do is stand by what I have said and what I believe.


Here’s the next video episode of “Ask Nathan!”

Nathan and The Fast Lane Car team are here to answer your (reasonable) questions. Interesting and/or entertaining emails will be posted to this column. If it’s relevant in the automotive universe, there’s a chance we may know something about it. The author’s email address and name will be omitted – leaving your initials or nickname, your preference.

From day one, The Fast Lane Car has made it our policy to answer as many questions and comments as we can. We get thousands of emails and comments and feel that, as part of a tight-knit automotive community, having an open dialogue with you keeps things fresh and exciting.

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