Your drive is cheaper

Un­be­liev­able, but motoring is cost­ing less, writes NEILMcDONALD

Herald Sun - Motoring - - News -

THERE’S been some re­lief in the hip­pocket pain of own­ing a car. The cost of own­ing and op­er­at­ing a ve­hi­cle fell in the lat­est RACV car-own­er­ship sur­vey. On av­er­age, it’s 7 per cent cheaper to own a car this year, com­pared with last year, amount­ing to a real sav­ing of $16.61 a week.

It’s the first time in re­cent years that costs have dropped, RACV chief en­gi­neer Michael Case says.

For the third con­sec­u­tive year, Hyundai’s pop­u­lar Getz is the cheapest car to run and own. The Toy­ota LandCruiser diesel is the most ex­pen­sive.

The pop­u­lar baby South Korean car costs $114.65 weekly, $8.18 cheaper than last year and the LandCruiser four-wheel-drive diesel costs a whop­ping $366.05 a week.

But even LandCruiser costs came down from $401.53 last year.

The RACV says lower petrol prices, lower in­ter­est rates and new-car deals had helped lower costs this time round.

Of the 75 cars sur­veyed, the best per­form­ers were in the light and small-car classes, the worst per­form­ers large four-wheel drives.

‘‘The mes­sage is clear,’’ Case says. ‘‘If you don’t need a four-wheel drive, don’t buy one.’’

At $171.92 weekly, the LPG Fal­con ute was the cheapest in the ute and large-car sec­tions.

The six-cylin­der lo­cals were well down the over­all list, but the Holden Com­modore again scored a nar­row win over the Ford Fal­con.

The Fal­con costs $231.31 weekly, com­pared with $226.29 for the Com­modore.

How­ever, the Fal­con and Com­modore work utes are cheaper to op­er­ate than the sedans.

A Fal­con ute costs $187.22 weekly and a Holden ute $187.63 a week.

De­spite their pop­u­lar­ity, hy­brids and diesels were worse off than their petrol cousins.

Be­cause of their higher ini­tial pur­chase price and sub­se­quent de­pre­ci­a­tion, hy­brids trail the fuel mi­sers in the small-car class.

A Toy­ota Prius costs $203.47 a week, com­pared with an equiv­a­lent-sized Toy­ota Corolla’s $156.11.

The diesel ver­sus petrol de­bate, too, was sharply il­lus­trated by the Hyundai i30.

The i30 diesel costs $151.66 weekly, $5.71 more than its petrol sta­ble­mate.

Getz bet­ter and bet­ter: the Hyundai Getz is the cheapest car to run for the third year run­ning.

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