Tiguan fills the travel bill

Herald Sun - Cars Guide - - ROADSIDE ASSIST -

I’ve just read your ar­ti­cle on Car of the Year and the Volk­swa­gen Tiguan is a very good choice in­deed. My wife and I are re­tired, in our 60s and liv­ing in Perth. I’m in the mar­ket for a new car for short trips around Aus­tralia for five to seven weeks at a time. Our present ve­hi­cle is a 10-year-old, six-cylin­der petrol Subaru Out­back which has been very good to us over the years and owes us noth­ing. I was keen on ei­ther the new Audi A4 All­road or the Mercedes GLC 250, both petrol, but my wife doesn’t like them or the new Out­back. The Tiguan has also been on my radar, as are the yet-to-be-re­leased Mazda CX-5 or, my pre­ferred ve­hi­cle, the new Audi Q5. We’re in no hurry but would ap­pre­ci­ate your thoughts. David & Val McIn­tosh, email The Tiguan is clearly good enough for your needs and gets The Tick. Why wait for the Q5 or pay ex­tra just to get the badge?

FULL-CREAM CRED

Volk­swa­gen must have paid the most this year. Aaron Young, Face­book No­body paid any­thing — and the cred­i­bil­ity of Cars­guide is not for sale at any price.

COL­LEC­TIVE VALUE

I sus­pect some­body at Car­guide se­verely up­set Toy­ota. Very few cars con­sid­ered and rated. But Volk­swa­gen, how­ever ... Ian Schilling, Face­book The Corolla Hy­brid came close to a Top 10 place but would not have fin­ished in the top three. VW’s suc­cess is not just about the Tiguan but also the Golf and Polo which won (twice, for the Golf), over the past eight years.

BASE, NOT APEX

Great re­sult for the Tiguan. We’ve owned the pre­vi­ous model for six years and are look­ing to up­date to your COTY. But which spe­cific model that won the award? Martin and Jean, email We drove the 110TSI Trend­line DSG auto, from $34,490 (man­ual $31,990), which goes to show the ba­sic car is a great choice and you don’t need to spend any more to get the best.

FAST FAN, NOT COOL

Our 2014 Jeep Grand Chero­kee 3.0-litre turbo diesel had its 60,000km ser­vice and the S49 re­call fix for a gearshift park is­sue. Pick­ing up the car, we were ad­vised not to be alarmed but the en­gine fan would be run­ning at high speed be­cause of the S49 re­call. There would be an­other re­call early next year with a patch to rec­tify the is­sue. Have you heard of this as we can’t seem to find any in­for­ma­tion about the fan be­ing af­fected? We can’t fault the car, it’s been great, and although there are hor­ror sto­ries out there we have never been left by the side of the road. It’s al­most out of war­ranty and I fear

the fan run­ning at high speed may cause un­due wear and tear. Amy Bran­cati­sano, email FCA spokesman Glenn But­ler says: “The is­sue Mrs Bran­cati­sano refers to is a po­ten­tial side-ef­fect of work car­ried out to ad­dress a re­call and has ab­so­lutely no ef­fect on safety, re­li­a­bil­ity or drive­abil­ity of the ve­hi­cle. Be­cause cus­tomer safety is our No.1 pri­or­ity, it was im­por­tant to get an ini­tial fix to mar­ket im­me­di­ately. Our in­for­ma­tion from the US is we should be in a po­si­tion next month to over­come the fan noise cur­rently pre­sent­ing in Mrs Bran­cati­sano’s ve­hi­cle, which will of course be at no cost and with min­i­mal inconvenience to her.”

CHANGE OF FO­CUS

Have you heard any­thing about Ford of­fer­ing dis­counts on Ku­gas to ex­ist­ing Fo­cus own­ers? I got a call from Ford di­rect, not a dealer, say­ing that they had checked the data­base and seen that we own a Fo­cus. They wanted to know whether we would be in­ter­ested in chang­ing over to a Kuga with a $1000 dis­count. Is Ford try­ing to get peo­ple out of the Fo­cus to get some prob­lem­atic DSG gear­boxes off the road? Grant Poole, email Ford Aus­tralia spokesman Damion Smy says the com­pany is look­ing to clear Kuga stocks be­fore the Es­cape’s 2017 ar­rival. There’s no sin­is­ter Fo­cus mo­tive.

PAR­TI­CLE PHYSICS

Re diesel en­gines be­ing the bet­ter buy for long-dis­tance work. In my ex­pe­ri­ence, some peo­ple want the per­for­mance of a diesel and fewer vis­its to the servo and don’t care that it’s cost­ing a bit more over­all. Then there’s the par­tic­u­late fil­ter. It needs to get up to tem­per­a­ture, roughly 20 min­utes at free­way speeds, ev­ery week or two to burn off the par­ti­cles to avoid clog­ging and risk­ing en­gine dam­age. If among all the short trips you can’t fit in a de­cent one ev­ery week or two, you’d need to go petrol. Wayne Ren­few, email You’re right on the fil­ter but it’s only been in the very re­cent past that diesels have be­come per­for­mance models, thanks to mod­ern turbo tech­nol­ogy and the mul­ti­ple gears in trans­mis­sions. Ask any­one who has driven an old Toy­ota LandCruiser.

ALL IN THE OIL

Re the CVT gear­box shud­der in the Honda Jazz, I can tell you that it sim­ply needs an oil change. I had the same prob­lem on our 2007 Jazz which was solved im­me­di­ately by the lo­cal Honda agent, free. These gear­boxes re­act like the lim­ited-slip dif­fer­en­tials pop­u­lar in cars of the 1970s1980s, which would shud­der and even lock up if not given reg­u­lar oil changes. The Jazz prob­lem arises be­cause the hand­book calls for a reg­u­lar oil change at 80,000km, but if you go to the front of the book where it ad­dresses ve­hi­cles that do only short trips, that comes down to 20,000km. Our Jazz had done 32,000km and gave no fur­ther trou­ble af­ter the oil change. Ian Thomas, email Thanks for a top tip.

TURN AGAIN

Re il­le­gal U-turns. A reader states the Aus­tralian Road Rules say it is il­le­gal to per­form a U-turn at any in­ter­sec­tion with traf­fic lights in all ju­ris­dic­tions of Aus­tralia ex­cept Vic­to­ria. What Aus­tralian Road Rule 40 says is that it is il­le­gal to do so un­less there is a “Uturn Per­mit­ted” sign erected. So it’s not a blan­ket ban. Ken Martin, email Ac­tu­ally, it’s a blan­ket ban with an ex­cep­tion. That ex­cep­tion, which is not the rule, is cov­ered by the sign and the where-per­mit­ted caveat.

Fan fix im­mi­nent: Jeep Grand Chero­kee

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