In­finiti fig­ures promi­nently

Herald Sun - Motoring - - ROADSIDE ASSIST - PAUL GOVER GETS AN­SWERS FOR YOU

We’re se­ri­ously con­sid­er­ing a ve­hi­cle from the Benz, BMW, Audi, Volvo, Lexus and Jaguar sta­bles. They have a mag­nif­i­cent crop of en­joy­able mo­tor ve­hi­cles but there is one I keep com­ing back to — the In­finiti Q30. It looks good with very swoopy styling, good size and econ­omy. The price asked is also where I feel com­fort­able, along with that Ja­panese-stan­dard qual­ity. Be­fore I sign my cheque, what are your ob­ser­va­tions? Ron­ald Lee-Har­ris, email There is a lot to like, although the car is built in Bri­tain and not Ja­pan. The Q30 gets The Tick from me.

WAR­RANTY CHAL­LENGE

There seems to be a sig­nif­i­cant dis­par­ity in new­car war­ranty pe­ri­ods. The ma­jor­ity of mak­ers give you a three-year war­ranty but quite a few do five, six and seven years. I’d have thought mak­ers of ex­pen­sive lux­ury cars would be the first with long war­ranties to back the pro­moted qual­ity of their prod­ucts but, no, Kia did that. What would be the mone­tary value of an ex­tra four-year war­ranty? About $2000? If so, in terms of war­ranty, a Kia prod­uct gives an ex­tra ben­e­fit worth about $2000. I think at some stage there will be a tip­ping point when the mak­ers with long war­ranties put real pres­sure on oth­ers with a pal­try three years. I hope that tip­ping point is not too far off.

Alexan­der Aich, email

Three-year war­ranties are a sig­nif­i­cant ad­vance on the orig­i­nal 12 months/12,000 miles cov­er­age, which later be­came 12 months/20,000km. It is usu­ally “chal­lenger” brands such as Kia that of­fer longer war­ranties, to build trust and pro­vide the essen­tial “per­mis­sion” for peo­ple to buy a car they might not oth­er­wise con­sider.

HUM­MING PRAISES

Thank you for all of your as­sis­tance in get­ting an owner’s man­ual for my Hum­mer H3.

Frank Good­win, email

Cars­guide read­ers come through again.

FLOW AND TELL

You ad­vised Den­nis Whit­ten about fill­ing up us­ing a hi­flow diesel bowser at the truck stop and said it would do his ve­hi­cle “a power of no good”. I own a 200 Se­ries diesel Toy­ota LandCruiser and on a num­ber of oc­ca­sions have used these hi-flow bowsers with no ill­ef­fects. Could you please ex­plain the dif­fer­ence in hi­flow diesel and the stan­dard diesel pump as I al­ways as­sumed diesel was diesel. Peter Wol­bers, email .

Can you please tell me why you say high-flow diesel pumps will do dam­age to in­jec­tors? I have just bought a Ford Ranger and won­der if I should start us­ing the small pump. John Catch­pole, email

Can you ask VW to elab­o­rate on how high­flow diesel would ad­versely af­fect an en­gine? I as­sume it all comes out of the same un­der­ground tanks and, in some lo­ca­tions, if you are tow­ing a van you have to go into the “truck bowsers” which of­ten have both high and nor­mal flow. Is diesel for trucks a lower qual­ity?

John Calder, email

VW’s sug­ges­tion was that some high-flow diesel pumps might dam­age ve­hi­cles but Cal­tex spokesman Sam Col­lyer says the fuel from high-flow and nor­mal bowsers is ex­actly the same. “All diesel sold — whether via reg­u­lar bowsers or high­flow — must meet min­i­mum stan­dards. Pump­ing the diesel into a small tank via a high­flow noz­zle won’t dam­age the en­gine.” Cal­tex doesn’t rec­om­mend us­ing a high-flow pump on a pas­sen­ger ve­hi­cle, though, be­cause the fuel flows much faster and there’s a risk the diesel will spill. For most cars the point is moot, as the high-flow noz­zle sim­ply doesn’t fit.

THIRST FOR KNOWL­EDGE

I am al­ways par­tic­u­larly in­ter­ested in the “thirst” in­for­ma­tion on test cars. Would you con­sider in­clud­ing tank ca­pac­ity to as­sist cal­cu­la­tions of the dis­tance be­tween re­fills? I re­alise this would vary

be­tween city and coun­try driv­ing. How­ever, with that in­for­ma­tion we could quickly cal­cu­late ap­prox­i­mate range.

Don Casey, email

There’s a lot we’d like to in­clude in the specs panel but it’s de­signed as a quick ref­er­ence only. Also, with so many vari­ables af­fect­ing range (ter­rain, driv­ing styles, type of fuel) we’re not sure it would de­liver an ac­cu­rate guide.

MIND THE GAP

Re SUVs ob­scur­ing your view of the road ahead. I was taught to look at the cars ahead but there was more than only one prin­ci­ple in­volved. The eas­i­est so­lu­tion for road-ahead vi­sion is to lift your right foot. Back off and in­crease your gap, so it’s then no dif­fer­ent to fol­low­ing a much larger ve­hi­cle such as a truck or bus. You can see and gain sig­nif­i­cantly more re­ac­tion time in the event there is an ob­struc­tion or emer­gency. If you can’t see their mir­rors, they can’t see you, so SUVs are not any­thing spe­cial in that re­gard. Sit­ting high isn’t al­ways the great thing peo­ple are led to be­lieve. It comes with other driver risks and chang­ing ve­hi­cle char­ac­ter­is­tics, such as higher cen­tre of grav­ity and risk of rollover.

An­drew Rose, email

Leav­ing space to the car in front is the right idea but my safety space is of­ten taken by an im­pa­tient driver keen to get 10 me­tres closer to a crash and fill my buf­fer zone.

SEE­ING IS DISBELIEVING

Un­for­tu­nately these SUV be­he­moths are here to stay and, as a mo­tor­cy­clist, they are a blight on our road sys­tem. You can’t see over them or around them or even through them. The en­emy of a mo­tor­cy­cle rider used to be a Mor­ris 1100 or a Volvo but now it’s these mon­sters that are usu­ally driven like a sports car. They are even worse in a con­voy driven by the grey no­mad set tow­ing vans. I’m 66 and have seen it all on our so­called re­stricted nanny state high­ways. Thank­fully my bike can dis­patch them pretty eas­ily but, in my Mazda2, one has to be very pa­tient.

War­ren West, email

HOMER RUN

Re car names. Some of them are ridicu­lous. I’m con­vinced ei­ther the mak­ers are il­lit­er­ate or they’ve just played Scrab­ble and have used the left­over let­ters. I won­der which com­pany will be the first to use Homer Simp­son’s favourite car name, The Perse­phone?

Colin Had­den, email

The Perse­phone was ac­tu­ally a com­pact car de­vel­oped by Homer’s long-lost brother Herb, head of the Pow­ell car com­pany, in an episode of The Simp­sons. Homer de­signed the Homer. And let’s not for­get the Cany­onero.

A lot to like: In­finiti Q30

Rid­ers’ ruin: Mor­ris 1100

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