The Falcon blame game
HOWabout launching a campaign to save the Falcon? Stop telling everyone it’s dead, start telling everyone how good it is and tell Ford to start making proper ads like the ‘‘Can’t Get Enough of This’’ campaign from 2002. There are thousands of Aussie jobs on the line. Motoring journos carry some blame by being negative about the Falcon. Every time you say ‘‘the Falcon is dead’’, you tell the public not to buy it. Why not start telling buyers why they should consider it? Remember the ‘‘V8s til ’98’’ campaign? It worked with the Holden, so let’s save the Falcon.
Frank Redward, email We’re fans of the Falcon and have written about the superiority of the EcoBoost model. But it’s not our job to do the job for Ford, especially when it does it so badly. We’re Falcon supporters but the buck stops at Broadmeadows. BOOSTING ECOBOOST I drive a 60th anniversary Commodore and do about 45,000km a year. The car needs replacing and my company gives me two options, Ford G6 or Holden Equipe. What are your views, or is there another six-cylinder car in the same price bracket that I should look at, in case my company widens its choice? It needs to be replaced by September 1.
Di Boyle, email Get a Falcon G6 but with the EcoBoost four-cylinder engine. It makes the Ford into a sweet, relaxing driving package and is easier on fuel than the sixes, with no real loss of performance. FAST FARCE I read your article on theBMW M6 coupe, which said: ‘‘Most impressive thing, ‘cruising’ on a freeway at 120km/h.’’ You should remind people that 110km/h, as far as I know , is the speed limit in NSW. If you think that 120km/h is cruising, what speed do you think you would be allowed to do if you were in a hurry ?
Dennis, email We’re sure people know we have archaic speed limits in Australia. There were no speed cameras on the roads in Spain, encouraging people to drive sensibly and not with one eye locked on the speedometer. As for a ‘‘ hurry speed’’, we’ve driven at better than 180km/h for hours on the unrestricted German autobahns – the safest roads in Europe. TWINS CLUTCHING I want a second-hand manual car, spending up to $15,000, for my twin children to learn to drive. Reliability, resale, safety and ease of driving are important. We plan to resell the car in two years when our children obtain their provisional licences.
Kia Wittner, email We’d recommend an automatic as a learner car. There is so much to take in when you hit the road and changing gears is a big distraction. More than 80 per cent of new cars sold these days are automatic, so the vast majority of youngsters will never drive a manual. You could get a new Hyundai i20 for a similar price, or a Suzuki Swift would be good. CZECH ’EM OUT Are Skodas any good? My daughter-in-law is looking for a car to last her six to 10 years. She has $25,000-$30,000 to spend. She was thinking about a Skoda station wagon, maybe second-hand.
PamLamaro, email Skoda is part of the Volkswagen Group and its products are terrific, usually with a neat design twist. They’re built in a state-of-theart factory and are intended to give better value than VWs in Australia. They get a tick. ARIGHT RIPPER What is your recommendation between the Honda MDX, Volvo XC90 and Ford Territory? With a budget of $20,000$25,000 safety, fuel efficiency and extra space are priorities.
Simon Cave, email If you can find an MDX, it would be the best choice. A Volvo at that price range is going to be old and run-down and we’re still not convinced about the problems with older Fords. But theMDXwas a ripper before Honda decided it only needed left-hand-drive. AGEING STARLET I have had my three-door Starlet for eight years. I want something with more power, good safety and the ability to fit four adults. I do a bit of inner-city driving and go on long drives on the open road once a month or so. I would spend $15,000-$25,000 and I’m not keen on a European car.
ErinHammett, email Toyota Corolla. It won our recent small-car comparison, beating the Volkswagen Golf and Mazda3, our previous preferred choices.
Get aboard: The Ford label needs better advertising and more support, one reader says