Best of British for empty
What do you think about the new XF Jaguar 3.0-litre. We test drove one and were very impressed. I have a Range Rover Sport and a Toyota HiLux; as we don’t really need two 4WDs we’d like to downsize to a car. I have been happy with the Rangie, but it is now coming nine years old and all our children are grown up. Kim, email The XF was a landmark car for Jaguar, the first of its new-generation models after Tata of India took control. I think the XF diesel is a very good car and, if you’re a British car fan, it gets The Tick.
It is rare to see a modern car broken down at the side of the road. But I was surprised after driving 1000 miles in California last month to see only one car in distress. What brand was it? Yep, you guessed it, a modern Jaguar! Bob, email Don’t listen to him, Kim, the latest Jaguars are very, very well built and reliable.
This may seem strange, given the bad reviews it received, but I have been really happy driving a Nissan Tiida for the past five years because it’s the perfect size for my needs. Now it is time to replace it and I want to know what small car has the same ample space as the Tiida, and also is the best value if I go for a top-of-the-range model with satnav, reversing camera, leather etc? William Mellor, email Just about every small car will match the space of the Tiida so you have two choices, go for a class leader such as the Mazda3 or return to Nissan for a value deal on the Pulsar. The Mazda gets The Tick but the Nissan is very good value.
HATCHING A PLATE:
I’m thinking of buying a Nissan Pulsar hatch but want to wait for the 2015 plated model. Do you know when this will be released? Richo, email It’s not just about the “plate” but about the build date. That is the start of a car’s life. The build dates will depend on which model of Pulsar you want to buy. Since it’s a calendar date, you’ll have to wait for next year.
SUV NOT NEEDED
We have up to $60,000 to buy a new car but would you recommend a sedan or a four-wheel drive? We live between Wauchope and Port Macquarie and travel between the two each day plus travel to Gunnedah and Sydney each about four times each year. Considering this driving, which vehicle would you recommend? Stella Beasley, email I always put a car ahead of an SUV unless you drive on gravel roads. A car is quieter, more comfortable and gets better fuel economy. For you, depending on what you drive now, a Toyota Camry will be surprisingly good and the Skoda Superb, which gets The Tick, will be brilliant.
It is interesting to note the obsession with dual cab utilities for towing as it has been my experience that if you are going to tow a caravan over a long period, the current crop of dual cab utes, although fast and powerful, has suspect durability. I think it is a mistake to tow with an engine of less than 4.0L capacity. Ted, email It’s too early for a reliability read on classy utes such as
Jaguar XF: A landmark model and even better in diesel form.
Right: VW Amarok