Best $30k New Car for my Grandparents?

First off, I’ve put some nice pictures of mine to repay you for your time and thoughts at the bottom. Thanks in advance!

My grandparents will soon be replacing their venerable 95 Buick Regal Gran Sport (just like this one), though it remains in near-showroom condition despite 190k miles, with the exception of some undercarriage surface rust and some faded upholstery. Any suggestions on a price target for the old boat?

They are from rural, south-of-Indianapolis, IN.

They are on the search for a new car with a price range around $30,000, and want something comfortable, safe, reliable, salty-winter-ready and fuel efficient. Basically, they want a fully loaded midsize sedan. I haven’t determined whether they would prefer to have a small SUV, like a CR-V (which I refuse to recommend because of the racket in the back; seriously, why do all everyday Hondas sound like tin cans?) or a sedan.

As far as feature requirements go, I do know that they want to buy new. Leather seats are a must; preferably in a light grey or tan; a power passenger seat for my (very) short grandmother would be very much appreciated; easy to use controls (they’re in their 70s).

So far, I’ve recommended the Mazda 6 (w/ Grand Touring trim), and the Mazda CX-5 (also Grand Touring). My grandfather is a fan of the Ford Fusion (mostly because they didn’t take government bailout money), but I’m leery of the complicated My Ford Touch system. I fiddled with it in an autoshow recently, and found it baffling even for me. According to Consumer Reports, it’s the number one complaint against new Fords.

Now, if it were me in their place, I’d get this car, but I don’t think they want the expense of a BMW. They tend to keep their cars for a long time (as evidenced by the Buick).…

Are there any cars I’ve missed that should be included on their search? Thanks!


This is (believe it or not) the reflection of the Chevrolet emblem embossed on a front license plate on blacktop. I call it “Chevy’s Hidden Angel.”

No, I don’t know if it was real. Either way, I love the little fangs!


The Newport Beach, CA Ferrari dealer’s owner’s personal Enzo. Looks like there’s a bit of wax residue on the badge. Not that I blame them; the whole thing is barely three inches long!


And finally, the decorative plating of the right intercooler of the standard Veyron (also owned by the Newport Beach, CA Ferrari dealer).

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