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Herald Sun - Motoring - - Readers Say -


Q WHEN I picked up my 2005 BA Fair­mont Ghia af­ter its 105,000km ser­vice, my me­chanic told me the front springs were bowed and rub­bing on the struts. The lo­cal Ford dealer told my me­chanic it was a com­mon prob­lem, but when I rang and sug­gested they sup­ply new springs, they said ‘‘it’s not go­ing to hap­pen’’. Am I ask­ing too much and is this a prob­lem you have heard of?

Greg Pearce, Trar­al­gon If you talk to sus­pen­sion spe­cial­ists they will tell you it’s a com­mon prob­lem. The springs Ford used are quite long and they’re com­pressed into a small space so they can dis­tort and foul the strut, as yours has done. You can re­place them with fac­tory orig­i­nals from Ford or use af­ter­mar­ket springs. They cost about $190 a set of two springs, or about $390 fit­ted with a wheel align­ment. I don’t like your chances of get­ting new springs out of Ford.


Q IN RE­SPONSE to the let­ter from AM ( cars­Guide, Septem­ber 3) about the ‘‘high level of bounci­ness and sway­ing’’ he ex­pe­ri­enced in his Hyundai SLX i30, I no­ticed my new i30 SX seemed to feel ev­ery bump on an un­even road. Hav­ing said that, I was given a ride in a friend’s new Honda Jazz and that seemed to be much the same.

I can only as­sume that most smaller cars in this ‘‘ sporty’’ cat­e­gory are built with firmer spring­ing and sus­pen­sion which, though not giv­ing the cush­ioned ride of larger cars, do drive well on the high­ways and corner beau­ti­fully with­out any no­tice­able sway. I have done sev­eral trips to Syd­ney in the past six months and am quite happy with the car’s per­for­mance.

David Ni­chols, email Other read­ers con­tacted us about their ex­pe­ri­ences with the i30 and they have all been pos­i­tive. None com­plained about the ride. Hyundai has also con­tacted us and is keen to talk to AM to sort out his is­sues with his car. He should con­tact Craig Frazer at



READ Ian West’s in­quiry ( cars­Guide, Septem­ber 10) about us­ing E10 in his 1998 Toy­ota Camry. I’d be very wary af­ter my ex­pe­ri­ence with a low-mileage 2002 Toy­ota Avalon. Per­haps it was sim­ply co­in­ci­dence, but when I tried E10 there was a slight im­prove­ment in per­for­mance, but it used more of it. Af­ter 2000km the mo­tor be­came hard to start, par­tic­u­larly in cold, wet con­di­tions.

The dealer said a rub­ber part in the tank had failed and re­placed it. I switched back to ULP and the start­ing re­verted to nor­mal, but when I again tried some months later, the start­ing prob­lems re­turned. I vowed never to use E10 again and used 95 for the rest of the time I owned the ve­hi­cle.

My present car, a Honda Civic, has a sticker on the fuel filler cap giv­ing the nod to E10, but I’ll stick with 95 or 98, both of which cer­tainly im­prove the per­for­mance of a ve­hi­cle that goes quite well, any­way.

Noel Carter, email Your ex­pe­ri­ence of in­creased per­for­mance and in­creased fuel con­sump­tion on E10 is in line with what we’ve been told would hap­pen, but the fail­ure of a rub­ber com­po­nent in the fuel tank is cause for con­cern. So too is the start­ing dif­fi­culty you had. Both of your cars are claimed to be E10 com­pat­i­ble but, like you, I’m not con­vinced that E10 won’t cause some is­sues on some cars.



OWN a 2003 TJ Mit­subishi Magna that has av­er­aged about 12-12.5 litres/100km around town

Rub­bing: a reader is concerned about the front springs on a Fair­mont Ghia.

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