Best of Bri­tish for empty

Herald Sun - Motoring - - ROADSIDE ASSIST -

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.

ONE GRUM­BLE

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.

THINK SMALL

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.

LUSTY DIESELS

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

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