Right to be im­pressed


I am look­ing at a car to tide me over for quite a few years. I am im­pressed with the Subaru Im­preza’s fea­tures. It seems to have all the at­tributes for a 70year-old with a wife who needs a car that will ride com­fort­ably and can take a wheel­chair. An­nual driv­ing is only about 6000km be­cause my wife is largely house­bound but I need trans­port to med­i­cal ap­point­ments. I have al­ways had Corol­las but I’m look­ing for some­thing dif­fer­ent — the Corolla is no longer ex­cit­ing in the cabin. Brian Leone, email

The new Im­preza is a classy car that gets The Tick from me. It’s just hit­ting show­rooms and will def­i­nitely do the job for you.


I’m im­pressed by the styling and US re­views of Volk­swa­gen’s flag­ship sedan, the CC. I can’t re­call any com­ments re­lat­ing to this ve­hi­cle in Cars­guide and note that VW Aus­tralia doesn’t in­clude the ve­hi­cle in the lo­cal home­page. Is this car avail­able in Aus­tralia and if so how do you rate it in its class?

Brian Patterson, email

The CC, orig­i­nally the Pas­sat CC, was dis­con­tin­ued late last year. You might still be able to find one in a VW deal­er­ship. The CC def­i­nitely gets The Tick and its re­place­ment, called the Ar­teon, comes to Aus­tralia in Oc­to­ber.


When you do the car tests and com­par­isons, are the quoted power out­puts mea­sured at the fly­wheel or at the driv­ing wheels? Will there be a new WRX in the near fu­ture or an up­grade? Brian Gairn, email

We quote man­u­fac­turer num­bers and they are mea­sured at the fly­wheel. On the WRX front, there will be a ma­jor “midlife” update midyear but the next new model won’t be un­til late 2018.


Re Mazda in­fo­tain­ment. My CX-3 has been back to the deal­er­ship three times. They reckon they haven’t had an­other case like mine and it’s very frus­trat­ing — you never know if it will work or not. They do the re­set and it works for a while then I have noth­ing but trou­ble. Belinda Free­man, email Mazda spokes­woman Karla Leach replies: “We have con­tacted Ms Free­man and she still has some mi­nor intermittent is­sues with the right-hand speak­ers in her CX-3. We are work­ing with our col­leagues in Ja­pan to re­solve this is­sue and have com­mit­ted to keep con­tact with Ms Free­man to re­solve as soon as pos­si­ble.”


Re Mazda3 nav­i­ga­tion is­sues. Our SP25 GT has been re­turned to the dealer on three oc­ca­sions for­mally, plus on two oc­ca­sions in­for­mally. The dealer has pro­vided up­dates and fac­tory restarts but the prob­lem has never been re­solved. We are about to re­turn our car to the dealer for­mally for the fourth time. I wrote to Mazda and re­ceived a call which, in sum­mary, in­di­cated that the sys­tem was as good as it would get. I am con­vinced Mazda are go­ing through the mo­tions un­til such time as the car is no longer un­der warranty. Then they can charge me for try­ing to fix a fault that is no longer cov­ered.

J& M Turner, email

Mazda says it is do­ing ev­ery­thing pos­si­ble for un­happy own­ers and this is the lat­est from Karla Leach: “Reg­u­lar up­dates to ve­hi­cle soft­ware are un­der­taken for a few rea­sons. They in­clude im­prov­ing the in­ter­ac­tion of third-party de­vices, which is re­quired to keep the ve­hi­cle and de­vice ‘talk­ing the same lan­guage’ and to update the ve­hi­cle soft­ware to pro­vide new fea­tures and up­dates.”


I have an is­sue with my 2011 Nis­san Navara. Af­ter a re­cent break­down, it was found that a bolt se­cur­ing the fuel in­jec­tor pump drive

gear had come loose, over a pe­riod of time caus­ing in­ter­nal dam­age and fi­nally fall­ing out. I am look­ing at re­pair bill of over $7000 for parts and labour. Ger­ard McLaugh­lin, email

Sorry but I have been in touch with Nis­san Aus­tralia and they are not pre­pared to pro­vide any good­will be­cause the car is over five years old, is not with the orig­i­nal owner, has not been ser­viced with a Nis­san dealer and is cur­rently at an in­de­pen­dent work­shop.


Re high-flow diesel. It is the same diesel ex­cept for a big­ger noz­zle for a faster flow to fill big tanks quicker. How­ever, there is also truck diesel avail­able, es­pe­cially in coun­try towns, that nor­mally is 2 cents a litre cheaper than nor­mal diesel and I have been told this is be­cause it does not con­tain the anti-foam­ing de­ter­gent in nor­mal diesel. Wil­liam Goetz, email

That’s an in­ter­est­ing new devel­op­ment.


My 2007 VE Com­modore has done 120,000km and Holden dealer ser­vice has rec­om­mended on four oc­ca­sions hav­ing in­jec­tor clean­ing. I have just seen your re­ply rec­om­mend­ing against pay­ing for fuel in­jec­tor clean­ing. The last time it was done on my car they said there was a lot of car­bon and that I should be

us­ing the higher oc­tane fuel oc­ca­sion­ally to pre­vent the clean­ing even though the own­ers man­ual says to use reg­u­lar 91. Tim Cox, email

There are clean­ing agents in some pre­mium un­leaded fu­els and that can pre­vent prob­lems with fuel in­jec­tors. It might be worth­while but some deal­ers are still us­ing ex­pen­sive ”clean­ing” as a profit booster.


I bought a new Toyota LandCruiser 200-Se­ries VX in mid-Novem­ber and, as I was driv­ing home, I went through an in­ter­sec­tion on the NSW Cen­tral Coast that had a ma­jor up­grade in late 2015. Yet the maps on the GPS showed the old in­ter­sec­tion, be­fore the up­grade. I ex­plained this to the sales­man that sold the car and all he could say was that the car had the lat­est Toyota maps in­stalled. It may be im­pos­si­ble to be on top of ev­ery map up­grade for ev­ery road or in­ter­sec­tion in Aus­tralia but on a car worth nearly $100,000 to have the lat­est maps within six months should not be im­pos­si­ble. Trevon Moore, email

Your com­plaint is quite com­mon as fac­tory sat­nav on most brands lags well be­hind Google Maps. It’s not re­stricted to Toyota and comes be­cause it takes years for map data to be com­piled, up­dated and then sup­plied for up­load­ing into fac­tory set-ups for cars.


How about a page on the nig­gling prob­lems peo­ple have had with their cars. Over six months, us­ing say a dozen prob­lems or faults per make, you could cover the full gamut of faults. I know per­son­ally that the small prob­lems can re­ally get you down. When look­ing for a re­place­ment ve­hi­cle,

you won­der if an­other make has sim­i­lar faults, or what faults the other makes may have. Jim Moody, email

A good idea — but there are about 50 car brands in Aus­tralian show­rooms so it would take years to get through all of them.

The new Im­preza is a classy car that gets The Tick from me.

Volk­swa­gen CC

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