OK Jalopniks, help me out.

For the last 2.5 years, my daily driver has been a 2012 Audi S4 6MT.

The S4 is not really best suited to my needs anymore for a couple reasons:

- I recently purchased a Boxster S, which fulfills my desire for a performance car better than the Audi.


- My wife and 2 kids and I unexpectedly ended up using the Audi as an whole-family-commuting-together vehicle most days of the week. It’s a bit cramped with all 4 of us, school bags, workout gear, a rear facing car seat, etc.

- S4 is not well suited to our commute with fairly heavy stop-and-go traffic where its power is useless and the manual trans, while not annoying, doesn’t serve its purpose of helping me enjoy the drive. Fuel economy is also poor when in traffic (19-21mpg around town).

- I don’t want to give up all sporting pretense but something “plainer” than the S4 would be better for commuting.


-I end up street parking a fair bit, so my next car can’t be too long to parallel park easily. I also prefer a “normal” car to a luxury car since it is bound to get a few love bumps from other parkers, and nails in the tires from nearby construction sites.

Budget: $15000-$23000

Must have:

-Larger back seat and rear legroom than Audi

-Not too long to parallel park

-Good city fuel economy

-Leather seats

-USB plug-in to easily charge/connect phone/music

-2 cupholders (the S4 has 1.5, seriously)


-Automatic transmission (I know, I know, but the Boxster is a manual, OK?)

-Lower maintenance costs

-Decently sporty but not all-out performance

The obvious choice is a Mazda6. Any other suggestions? Any reasons in favor of, or against, the Mazda6?


Thanks in advance for any input. Also, if you’re interested in buying my 2012 Audi S4, let me know. I’m located near Gainesville, Florida. It has about 60,000 miles and is well-maintained. Only mods are a Roc Euro intake and hardwired radar detector power cord.