Jig­gered for a Jag

Herald Sun - Motoring - - Readers Write -

WHY does the Fed­eral Gov­ern­ment think it needs to reg­u­late and re­strict the pri­vate im­port of ve­hi­cles from the UK, most no­tably Jaguars? An en­tire in­dus­try ex­ists to im­port Nis­sans, Toy­otas and other ve­hi­cles from Ja­pan via spe­cial­ist im­porters, and sim­i­lar ar­range­ments ex­ist for im­ports from the US. Why not Jags from the Old Dart? The Depart­ment of In­fra­struc­ture and Trans­port in Can­berra di­rects queries to Jaguar Aus­tralia, which can ret­ro­spec­tively ap­ply an ADR com­pli­ance plate to a pri­vate im­port but re­fuses even to speak about the sit­u­a­tion. I want a five-to seven-year-old XJ8 with all the trim­mings. In Oz they’re about $30,000 to $50,000, de­pend­ing on kilo­me­tres and con­di­tion. In the UK they are about $7500 to $11,000. Af­ter ex­change rate con­ver­sion, trans­port costs, cus­toms du­ties and AQIS fees, and our GST, it is still about $10,000 cheaper. An opin­ion would be good, and maybe a bit of pres­sure on the gov­ern­ment to free up this type of trade, and take away the man­u­fac­turer’s bully-boy tac­tics.

Alan Thierry Jaguar Aus­tralia to­tally dis­agrees with what you say and points out that the Ja­panese im­ports are made un­der theRAWscheme that al­lows low-vol­ume im­ports and is fo­cused on Ja­panese per­for­mance cars more than 10 years old. Other­wise, the com­pany says the rules are the same for all brands.

ASTYLISH STATE

I will re­tire in the next six months and am think­ing of a year-old Holden States­man or Caprice for about $50,000 with up to 15,000km. What other cars should I con­sider in that in that range.

De­nis White, email Since it’s likely a re­tire­ment gift to your­self, go with what you want. It won’t be your last car, es­pe­cially not the way fuel prices are go­ing when you’re buy­ing into a thirsty but en­joy­able lux­ury car. For sim­i­lar money, you could get a bor­ing Camry or an en­joy­able Honda Ac­cord Euro or a great value new Skoda Su­perb.

IF NOT 3, THEN 2

My mother, who is 80, has a 1998 Holden sta­tion wagon which she bought new and is get­ting old and way too big for her to drive. We are think­ing of get­ting her a smaller, more com­pact car, new or a few years old, for no more than $18,000. We were think­ing of the Mazda3 but they may be a bit pricey. She doesn’t drive much and, be­ing in a re­tire­ment vil­lage, she has no garage. The car will sit in a car park. Can you ad­vise?

Sharon Pat­ullo, email If you like the idea of a Mazda3, the ob­vi­ous des­ti­na­tion is the smaller Mazda2. It should be fine for her and you should get a rea­son­able trade-in.

CRASH FALL­OUT

In­ter­est­ing Top 10 V8 Su­per­car crashes you picked in

Cars­guide. I can’t agree with hav­ing Fabian Coulthard down at nine, though I am­prob­a­bly bi­ased hav­ing been there, and I don’t think I would have put Brad Jones’s one in there. And, as mem­o­rable as the SkaifeIn­gall clash was, it wasn’t su­per in any sense for me.

Phil Wise­would, email Ev­ery­one will have their own crash list, but it wasn’t meant to be a strict rank­ing of the crashes. Jones’s crash was in­cluded be­cause it was one of the first big ones at Turn Eight in Ade­laide, and the SkaifeIn­gall in­ci­dent at East­ern Creek had fall­out that went far be­yond any panel dam­age.

BROWNOUT

Read­ing your Top 10 crashes, I was sur­prised that you didn’t in­clude Bill Brown in the GTHO of Bathurst 1971. Com­par­ing safety stan­dards of then to 1999 and even re­cently makes it amaz­ing that Brown could vir­tu­ally walk away. Also more as­tound­ing is the mar­shal who leaped out of the way, miss­ing death by inches.

ShaunDun­ford The crash list­ing was only for V8 Supercars. Brown’s rollover at McPhillamy Park was in the 1970s and the days of Se­ries Pro­duc­tion cars.

JUICE SQUEEZE

I want an Audi Q5 but can’t de­cide be­tween a 2.0-litre petrol or a 2.0-litre diesel. I’ll do about 15,000km a year and will keep the car for 10-plus years.

Gareth See­ber, email The gen­eral rule of thumb is to go petrol if you travel less than than 30,000km a year, as it takes a while to win back the ex­tra cost of the diesel en­gine with bet­ter econ­omy. Def­i­nitely go diesel if you do any tow­ing.

Paw­show: Im­port laws lean more to used Ja­panese sport­sters than col­lec­tor Jaguars

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