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  1. #1

    Default In an HHR right now

    Monday I dropped my car off in the body shop to get it repaired after a lady hit me in the side. The insurance company is paying for a rental while it's in the shop. (Thank God, I don't think I could afford 15mpg or less in one of my trucks!) So, Enterprise puts me in a Ford Focus. At first, the car seemed ok, but then I started realizing some things. First, the seat isn't comfortable in the least and doesn't recline well. Second, the blasted thing doesn't have any cruise control!!! How can a brand new 2012, or anything built in the past 10 years for that matter, not have freakin' cruise control! GRRRRR. So, the next morning I call Enterprise up and say is there ANY way they could swap me into something that has cruise control. Sure, they say, just stop on by. So, I did. And what do they put me in? A HHR.

    Now, I've never driven or been in an HHR before, and I must say, it is pretty nice. First of all, it has cruise! It's quite roomy and is comfortable. I also like the fact that I don't have to fall into or crawl out of the seat like I do in my Saturn. It has a 2.4L Ecotech motor in it, the big brother of the 2.2L I have in my Saturn. So far, I'm averaging around 33mpg according to the information center. I'll verify that in a day or 2 when I refuel.

    Now, I'm not crazy for the instrument cluster in the least. It's sort of a steampunk-type design with the gauges being on various height levels and stuff. Bleh, just give me some nice, generic gauges. The increments are hard to read while driving because the speedometer only has labels every 20mph, and indiscriminate ticks in between to indicate every 5mph. Then there's the stark lack of gauges in general. All it has is speedometer, a relatively tiny tach, and temp gauge. I'd like a little more information about my engine.

    But, would I buy one? Sure, I could see myself buying a used one. It kinda feels like a Suburban, just smaller. And with a decent mpg.

    1991 Chevy Suburban 1/2 ton 2WD w/ chevy SBC 350-3/4 ton drivetrain upgrade w/4.10 gears 200K miles
    2005 Saturn ION-2 Stock 265K miles
    1982 Bronco, 1993 Bronco (sold), 1971 M35A2 Deuce and a Half

    There are 10 kinds of people, those who understand binary, and those who dont...

    Remember kids, the only difference between screwing around and science is writing it down- Adam Savage

  2. #2


    I dont drive my wifes HHR much, especially since I have my new truck, but when I do I dont mind it, not a bad car.
    Are you driving an LT or LS?
    My wifes is an LT and has all the gauges, not sure if LS includes them all.
    One problem I do have is the window switch's not where they should be and I get a little distracted looking for them.
    But I do love the sunroof, sometimes wish I had one in my truck.

  3. #3


    I think I'm in an LT. It's a rental car, so it's whatever the base package is.

  4. #4

    mfleetwood's Avatar
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    Jul 2010
    Denver, CO
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    Our company started buying these cars for our face to face sales reps a couple of years ago and most of them have great things to say about it. It could also be they like the car because it is a step up from the Venture vans we were previously using .

    Mike (Denver, CO) - 2008 Sierra 1500 Z71 SLE 5.3L 4WD

    SUSPENSION: Rancho 4" Suspension Lift; Rancho RS9000XL Shocks; Rancho Skid Plates; Rancho MyRide Wireless Shock Controller;
    BFG All Terrain KO 315/70/17
    DRIVE TRAIN: 4.56 Gears; Detroit TrueTrac Differential; True Cool 40k Transmission Cooler
    PERFORMANCE: DiableSport Predator Tuner; Custom Tuned by Diablew; Magnaflow Exhaust; AFE Cold Air Intake
    ELECTRONICS: Kenwood DNX6180 Touchscreen; Subthump box w/10" Kicker; Driver Information Center (DIC); Rear View Camera
    ACCESSORIES: Westin Brush/Grill Gaurd; Westin Nerf Bars; Truxedo Tonneau; 20% Tint; Tow Mirrors w/Heat & Signals

  5. #5

    Default to what you have mentioned, what you like about the HHR, and how's it Ride??.......the reason I'm asking, is With the price a Gas, what it is Today, I've been lately looking at the HHR' a 2nd Vehicle/Grocery getting.
    Last edited by 99'HEARTBEAT; 05-09-2012 at 01:25 PM.


    5.3 l 3.73 l G80

  6. #6


    I had a company HHR and one thing I did not like was the low profile type tires and wheels package. When you hit a chuck hole it bends the rim and blows the tire. Now mind you this was a small chuck hole that my truck would take with ease. They are less roomy up front than my truck. On the other side they got great fuel mileage and the sound system was very good. the room in the rear was enough for samples and catalogs as well as weather friendly. You an put a lot of product back there.
    At higher rates of speed the handling was surprisingly good for a boxy vehicle, not a lot of roll in the corners and in high winds it held it's ground much better than the previous Astro I was given.
    I bought one for my parents as mom is very short and dad is blind so mom is comfortable driving the HHR.

    Would I buy one for myself? Good question. I would have to think a bit longer as I like my Silverado size and comfort
    2010 Chevy Silverado Z71 ext cab.4x4
    72 Monte Carlo 350-415 hp- sold (June 2011) to pay medical bills
    79 Impala 350 4bbl 375 hp- sold (June 2011)to pay medical bills

    "If He asks you to go a mile go two"

  7. #7


    I'll try to adress everything listed so far. If I've missed something, ask again and I'll try to catch it.

    Things I like. Well, if you look at my fleet, I'm a fan of boxy vehicles, so that's a plus. The drivers seat and rear seats are comfortable and provide me ample room. Keep in mind I'm pretty short. It's got a nice ride to it. Soft, but I do feel the bumps in the road, probably about the same as my Saturn. It's not a truck, so I don't expect the huge amount of room and high ride height of a pickup or suburban. I feel it's something I can feel comfortable making my long commute in everyday, and I will be for most likely the next week or two.

    As of now, my biggest concern is whether it can live up to the claimed EPA fuel mileage ratings and the mpg that the DIC is claiming. If it nets me 30+ mpg, I'd recommend it in a heartbeat for a daily driver.

  8. #8


    Mom nd dad are getting 31.6 as of the last fill up. they are mostly city driving with my moms heavy foot. So I am impressed with there fuel mileage.

  9. #9


    My wifes averages 31.
    We took it on a trip to Las Vegas a few years ago and at 75 mph we averaged 33mpg, I was a happy camper because I've never had a vehicle that good before.
    Our list of issues we've had is short:
    The affore mentioned window switch placement
    A material issue with the coating they used on the inside door trim peeling off

    The wife loves it for commuting to work, it's a 2008 with 46K miles, all we've had to do was normal maintenance every 7-9k miles.
    I wouldnt recommend the seats for long trips, when we drove to Vegas I had a hard time getting comfortable and sleeping, in town though it's a great commuter.

  10. #10


    Being a bit larger than most I hear ya on the seats. For long trips it was definitely a test . Mom is small ,about 115, so she fits the seats much better. Dad he doesn't complain about much just accepts that he can not drive any more and kinda just puts his head out the window when mom farts. And you thought only canines did that?

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