DIESEL DOES IT
Hybrids, hyped as the cars of the future, are being swamped in a sea of diesel as buyers prefer the latter form of alternative fuel by as much as 150 to one. Sales figures released by the Federal Chamber of Automotive Industries show that last month, private buyers bought 1428 turbo dieselpowered cars and 3149 SUVs to only 197 petrol-electric hybrid cars and 19 SUVs. Conventional petrol powered cars remain our vehicles of choice but the fuel efficiency and grunt delivered by turbo diesels is increasingly putting these vehicles in our driveways. Meanwhile, the Roy Morgan Automotive Currency Report has found more motorists considering buying a diesel (46.8 per cent) than a hybrid (45.9 per cent). Interest in hybrids peaked at 60 per cent three years ago.
We’ve not seen the last of Mark Skaife in a helmet and racing suit, despite his quitting V8 Supercar endurance driving to become the sport’s commission chairman. ‘‘ I’ve had some offers to do some racing overseas and a few more offers have come in since Bathurst to race locally,’’ he says. As chairman he must be independent but there is no conflict with the chairman’s position and other racing categories.
KOREA CONQUERS US
Kia and Hyundai have cornered the US market with brand and corporate loyalty, according to market researcher Experian Automotive. Kia dominates with 47.9 per cent of owners who bought another Kia between April and June. Ford was second with 46.5 per cent, followed by Chevrolet, Hyundai, Toyota, Honda, Subaru, Mercedes-Benz, Nissan and BMW.