Hi everybody!

(Hi Doctor Nick...

My 2005 Malibu Maxx is getting up there in miles (170,000) and is starting to break down. Doesn't start right away about 25% of the time, the A/C is broken, plastic pieces on the interior are starting to fall off randomly, etc. I am planning on purchasing a new vehicle this December (I have been told the very end of the last quarter is the best time to buy a car as they are attempting to get rid of their 2013 inventory). I have never purchased a car as I have driven hand-me-downs from my dad since I was in high school. I graduated from college 3 years ago and have a solid salary now and am able to afford a new car. My wife and I will probably start a family in the next year or two so I was thinking a small SUV with solid MPG (30ish HWY) is the way to go.

I like the Hyundai Tuscon, Toyota RAV4, Honda CRV, and Mazda CX-5.

Even though I have a decent paying job now I would prefer to keep the price around $20,000 with a car payment under $300/month. Does anyone have any advice on the best bang for my buck on a vehicle like this? Does anyone own any of these vehicles or something similar that can advise on the quality of their ride?

I would also greatly appreciate any wisdom some of the more experienced posters on Redszone can offer on buying a new car.

Thank you very much!