The buzz on Toyota
Carsguide seems to have descended to the depths of being a paid mouthpiece for Toyota. The article on the buyback scheme was the last straw. This was an unacknowledged advertisement, pure and simple. I have no problems reading ads, as long as I know that they are ads and not ads disguised as opinion. The new Corolla is not the bee’s knees you claim. It is not as good-looking as main competitors Holden Cruze or Mazda3, it does nothing better than either of them and its main claim to fame seems to be that it now has comfortable front seats. Whoopee, so did my Renault 8 and Peugeot 504, 40 years ago. Can we please have road tests that tell it like it is? Whether the Toyota bias is intentional or not, can we please call a spade a shovel or, in the Camry’s case, a house brick a s---box?
Geoff Carruthers, email
Guaranteed buyback is a big deal and will be copied, just as Toyota’s initiative on capped-price servicing is being emulated. As for the Corolla, even the outgoing model beats the Cruze and Mazda3 for quietness and refinement, and the new one is better still. We’ve never said it is the bee’s knees— that’s the seventhgeneration Volkswagen Golf we recently drove in Europe. KEY ISSUE I My daughter came home from work and said the remote key to her BMW had died. She was told she would need to get a new one and that would be $1000. Does that sound right to you?
Dale Houghton, email KEY ISSUE II You have mentioned recently that remote keys can be replaced through some outlets that aren’t as expensive as going through the dealers. Would you please be able to let me know where they are located in Melbourne? My key, which is 14 years old, has just stopped working.
Ross Fletcher, email Lots of those little keycutting shops can now do replacement keys for most brands that use remote central locking. In our experience, they are almost always less than $100 and that’s way cheaper than a factory original. BEEMER BECKONS We have a Honda MDX and are looking to replace it. I’m looking at a BMW X5, Land Rover Series 4 Discovery diesel or Lexus RX450. Any thoughts on which is a better vehicle? We do not do any serious off-roading.
Bernie Meehan, email We’d go with the X5, by a fair margin. CIVIC CAVEAT I recently bought a new Honda Civic hatch VTi-L from a Honda dealer in Melbourne. I took delivery on October 10 and the price was just under $34,000. I checked the Honda website yesterday and found the price for the same vehicle had dropped to $29,394 drive-away. Before I tackle Honda about this price reduction, I thought I would first ask your advice.
Vince Marzolo, email Sorry, but it’s not good news. Honda spokeswoman Melissa Cross says: ‘‘ The recent price repositioning brings hatch in line with sedan. From time to time, campaigns and offers in the market change and it’s always our goal to minimise the impact of change on our customers.’’
IN ACCORD I would appreciate your opinion of the latest 2012 Toyota Aurion Presara. I am looking for a luxurious, safe, reliable, large car that also has a very quiet engine.
The Aurion is the patriotic choice and a pretty fair car, but don’t commit until you try the Honda Accord V6, which is even more refined in the engine room. T FORTWO My parents are after an automatic medium-size car for suburban driving and occasional road trips. They are stuck after looking at the Toyota Corolla 2013, Mazda3, Hyundai i30 and Honda Civic 1.8. Is there a car that you recommend above the rest?
Laura Piu, email The new Corolla is the best car on their list but the i30 is also very good and a greatvalue choice.