Miles astern on mileage

Herald Sun - Motoring - - Readers Write -

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

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