Dual cab has dual purpose
I wrote to VFacts once saying the car sales totals for each month should not include the Toyota HiLux. It’s not a car, it’s a commercial ute. So your story with the plain new boring Corolla set to overtake the equally boring Mazda3 — your comments ring true — shouldn’t have the HiLux among the cars.
John Brennan, email The HiLux is not just a ute. A vast number of them are now family cars, with dual cabs from all brands now doing double (or triple) duty for work, family and fun runs. JUSTDOIT YOURSELF I have bought a new Audi A4 and expect delivery soon. Following the deal I was approached by the Audi aftermarket sales people with the Vogue car-care package of paint protection, window tint, vinyl and leather treatment. All have a lifetime warranty — though I wonder what exactly that is — and the full package costs $2999. This seems very high, as there are other aftermarket packages at half the price. Are any of them worthwhile, or should I just be putting in a bit of elbow grease to wax the car myself every few months? This is my first new car so I amprepared to invest in a package if it is worthwhile.
Paul, email It’s a massive waste of money. Such packages have become a major profit generator for new-car dealerships but you can get similar stuff much cheaper elsewhere. And most of it comes down to common sense, just looking after the car. PINNACLE OF SERVICE After reading of readers being charged exorbitant amounts by Ford to provide them with the security PIN for their vehicle sound system, I feared the worst when I needed the number after an electrical system problem. The books for my 1997 EL Falcon, along with sound system PIN, were nowhere to be found. I approached my Ford dealer with some trepidation but not only did I receive prompt and courteous service but also, as I reached for my wallet, the helpful service staff member said to me, ‘‘That’s OK sir, there’s no charge.’’ With these words ringing in my ears and security code in hand, I thought as I drove away, ‘‘With that sort of service, I’ll probably be back there to buy my next new car.’’ So thank you to Stillwell Ford in Adelaide, and also to Ford who can make great cars as the 330,000 trouble-free kilometres travelled by my Falcon demonstrate.
David Pickles, email IS ISONITSWAY I have a Lexus IS 250. Do you have any idea as to when Lexus will bring out the new model? Will there be a hybrid version?
Julie Zaoui, email We are down for an early preview drive of the next IS in November, which points to sales in the second half of next year. A hybrid is almost certain. PRONE TO CRACKING I have read about cracking in windscreens of FG Falcons and I recently noticed a small crack in the lower nearside corner of the screen in my 2010 Ford G6E Turbo. Staff at my local O’Briens windscreen repairs said this was not isolated case, as the screen is attached to the body with an area of unsupported overhang in both lower corners. Apparently an impact in this area can crack the screen.
Peter Black, email Thanks for the update. MAXMX-5 FUN I’m looking at buying a used Mazda MX-5 for a second car — for fun basically — and cost is no barrier. I’m looking at either a 1998-2000-plus NB model, or a 2005-plus NC model. Manual transmission of course. I’ve excluded previous models due to a lack of safety features such as airbags. So my question is fairly simple: Which model is more fun to drive?
Chris Page, email Maximum fun in an MX5 comes in the original 1989 model or the limited-edition SP turbo done by Mazda Motorsport in Sydney. But, with your plans, we’d just get the newest car. BLOWMEDOWN I’ve heard recently about people worrying about overheating cars and I’ve an interesting story. A friend had a similar problem which puzzled everyone. Then, one day, the son who was standing in front of the car felt a breeze on his legs. It turned out that the engine fan was wired backwards. I hope this unusual experience might help somebody.
An LPG conversion is definitely not something to do at home. There are, in any case, very strict licensing requirements on these jobs.
George, email DIY GASANO-NO I aminterested in fitting LPG systems to my cars and doing it myself. I amkeen on autogas, as natural gas is not a viable option for me. Can you point me in the right direction?
Brad Ford, email