Mean­while back in the ’70s

Herald Sun - Motoring - - In Box @ PG - PAUL GOVER CHIEF REPORTER Twit­ter @paulward­gover

A cou­ple of Euro­trash and Korean clunkers are wor­thy of a Top Ten rat­ing? Surely you’re kid­ding. Thanks to the dills who buy th­ese poor ex­cuses for mo­tor cars, and journos like you that gush all about how good they are for get­ting cof­fee down the cor­ner or for the stupid women who can’t drive a sta­tion wagon need­ing a SUV for pick­ing up the brats from soc­cer, you have killed the Aus­tralian car in­dus­try and ev­ery­thing that goes with it. An­thony Best, email We’re not kid­ding, and one of those Euro cars is clearly the best of 2013 in a field that in­cluded the VF Com­modore. That’s called ob­jec­tiv­ity, but as you demon­strate, chau­vin­ism is im­per­ish­able.

ZED CARS

Will the Nis­san 370Z con­tinue in its cur­rent form in 2014? Also, I have read con­flict­ing re­ports that Nis­san will be bring­ing out a Nismo ver­sion of the car next year to Aus­tralia. Mark Bleazby, email Peter Fadeyev of Nis­san Aus­tralia says its 370Z coupe and road­ster are sched­uled to con­tinue into 2014 but the Nismo car is not com­ing. The price of the 370Z coupe was re­cently re­duced to $62,091 drive-away but Nis­san is run­ning a spe­cial price for this model un­til De­cem­ber 31 at $59,990 drive-away.

VIN­TAGE CAR

I have re­warded my­self with a midlife-cri­sis new car: a Kia Sportage Plat­inum. You said how good they are and I am im­pressed. A lot of bang for your bucks and the car goes re­ally well. I can’t fault it. Ed Niemiec, email We’re al­ways happy to steer peo­ple in the right di­rec­tion. The Kia is a good choice.

AD­BLUE AD­VO­CATE

How about do­ing a story on Ad­blue, as all new Euro­pean diesels now have this sys­tem. I am an owner-driver and was look­ing at a new Mercedes Sprinter or VW Crafter van, but don’t want this added cost. In the end I stuck with a trusty Hi­Ace diesel, which is no longer the first op­tion, but I am very happy. Back to Ad­blue, my re­search has found peo­ple run­ning big B-dou­bles are not happy about the added cost and in­con­ve­nience. Loui, email The Ad­blue sys­tem, which is part of the Se­lec­tive Cat­alytic Re­duc­tion for diesels, is claimed to be the most ef­fi­cient method of re­duc­ing en­gine emis­sions to meet the lat­est stan­dards. Ad­blue, a liq­uid urea, is sprayed into the ex­haust sys­tem be­tween the turbo and cat­alytic muf­fler. As the ex­haust gas and Ad­blue work their way through the muf­fler, the Ad­blue breaks the ni­tro­gen ox­ides into ni­tro­gen and wa­ter vapour, both harm­less to the en­vi­ron­ment. Heavy trucks with SCR are said to be more fuel ef­fi­cient and to run cooler and are more re­li­able. Even Ken­worth is switch­ing to SCR Cum­mins en­gines.

AUTO AU­TOM­A­TON

Does the Fiat Pop have duologic or some kind of au­to­matic and, if so, how much is the car? Glamis Pearse, email Fiat calls the 500 au­to­matic a Dua­logic sys­tem, which means a robo­tised man­ual. The start­ing price is $14,000 drive­away but it’s ex­tra for the auto which goes to $15,500 be­fore on-roads.

JEEP’S A RIP­PER

I just wanted to re­spond to one of your reader’s con­cerns on the Jeep Grand Chero­kee. I’ve had my Jeep Grand Chero­kee for 20 months and have clocked up 40,000km with no prob­lems to date, apart from the high cost to ser­vice the ve­hi­cle based on com­par­isons with own­ers with dif­fer­ent mod­els. The Kumho tyres fit­ted from new need­ing re­place­ment at 22,000km and all ap­peared to be worn evenly across the tread. Re­place­ment Bridge­stones are do­ing much bet­ter. Dar­ren, email

GOOD OLD KIZA­SHI

Just for in­ter­est, as I have not seen many re­ports on the Suzuki Kiza­shi ex­cept on the in­ter­net, I de­cided I would write to you. Af­ter buy­ing the Kiza­shi Sport AWD and driv­ing it for some time I was sur­prised with the car and its many fea­tures. Price-wise it’s prob­a­bly up against Mazda 6 and the Honda Ac­cord to name a few. The fin­ish on the Kiza­shi is su­perb and I’ve had many com­ments from peo­ple ask­ing me what brand it is. If any­thing, the CVT takes get­ting used to and I don’t have a rear win­dow wiper. Joe, email The Kiza­shi is a very good car and we’ve re­ported that many times. But it’s get­ting old now and there are newer and bet­ter ri­vals, led by the Mazda6 that was run­ner-up in this year’s Carsguide Car of the Year judg­ing.

No kid­ding: Euro­pean cars like

the VW Golf,are go­ers

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