Miles astern on mileage
My Hyundai Getz, a 1.4 manual five-door, is supposed to do 6.1L/100km combined consumption. It has done 10.0L but can’t return 6.3 on the highway though it’s rated to do 5.4. The dealer service department said it will never do the rated consumption, but the salesman sold it to me on that very promise. When will dealers and manufacturers be held accountable for this? It is not hard to work out an average based on real driving conditions, so why isn’t there a standard Aussie test?
RobCoolum, email Yes, there is a standard Australian test and that’s where the numbers come from. But it’s done in a lab, not on the road to be sure it’s repeatable with different brands and cars. The real purpose is to give a comparison between cars to help buyers. In Carsguide’s experience, it is possible to achieve the quoted numbers, but you need to drive very carefully. REPEAT REQUEST I’m looking at many cars, all under $50,000 on the road. It’s interesting that all have working indicators. Almost everyone else on the road seems to have a car on which the indicators don’t work. Please help. Where do I find such a car?
Mark Sully, email Probably in the same dealerships where they sell the cars without mirrors. INFLATED The last time I bought a new 15-inch tyre was a couple of years ago. You had two choices, Aussie-made or cheap import. A good Aussie tyre was $100 and a well-known import was $70. Now that there are no Aussie tyres being made the same import is $135. Globalisation has a lot to answer for, not just lost skills. The big company knocks out the competition and doubles the price.
George, email AGOOD POLICY It’s time to renew the insurance on my 2002 VY Holden Berlina V8 wagon, a somewhat uncommon vehicle. The insurance companies’ market value ranges between $7500 and $10,000. At this value, if the car is written-off I’ll need to find $30,000 to replace it, since I need to be able to tow a caravan. Is it worth persisting with comprehensive insurance or better value to move to third-party property only?
Chris Donald, email A number of companies will do an agreed value, but you will pay more. If that’s the valuation, spend a minute online to check selling prices for similar cars at www.carsguide.com.au. Don’t forget the implications if you’re at fault in a big prang with something exotic and costly. I’MASPORTY TYPE I amlooking at a new sportytype car. Could you give me your opinion of the Hyundai Veloster? I really like that and the Mazda3 Maxx Sport. I’d appreciate any other suggestions.
Glenn, email The Veloster is a really sweet little package and great value. It’s definitely more fun than the Mazda3. SUV ADVENTURER My son wants to buy a compact SUV. Can you suggest options (ideally several) he can testdrive, as you can appreciate there is a multitude of SUVs to choose from. He can afford up to $40,000, perhaps even for a good used example. He will probably go camping and take it off-road. Furthermore it should have lots of safety features and be economical to run. For example, what about the Hyundai Santa Fe? He is looking to buy something in the next four weeks.
SamSiragusa, email Our first choice is the Kia Sportage, which is great value and a good drive. If he is serious about going off-road, the best alternative is the Suzuki Grand Vitara. NEEDING ECONOMY I have a 2002 Nissan Pulsar hatch in good condition and want to upgrade to a fuelefficient small car for city driving. My Nissan is costing a lot of money each time I go to a mechanic and it’s becoming too In April I bought a 2007 Ford Focus CL from a Nissan dealer and realised later that the radio PIN hadn’t been provided. I have been told I can expect Ford to charge up to $70 for the PIN. I amreluctant to pay, especially as the PIN should have been given on sale. I was hoping Ford’s attitude towards its customer base may have improved considering they appear to be on the nose with the public (judging by their appalling sales figures for what are essentially good vehicles), but sadly it appears they are as clueless about building customer loyalty as ever.
Jamie Spinks, email We tried to have the fee waived, but Ford says it is standard practice and a standard cost.
Case of consumption: Driving from Sydney to Brisbane, Carsguide bettered Hyundai’s claim for the i40