Fon­der of the Honda


A year ago we were look­ing at which small SUV to get to help avoid back pain. The Mazda CX-3 wasn’t too easy to get into, due to bad leg joints as well, and it also has a very low seat — which is only sedan height, no good for back pain and not re­ally a SUV. We then com­pared the Honda HR-V and Subaru XV, as we also have a Forester which we con­sider the best car we have ever had. In the end the HR-V won as best for us. It has 12-month/ 10,000km ser­vic­ing against six months on the XV and we only do 6000km a year. The HR-V’s spare wheel well takes a full-size job, also rul­ing out your favourite Maz­das. We found the inside of the HR-V about the same as your very favourite CX-5, which has no full-size spare. Peter Diprose, email


I am wait­ing on a Ford Mus­tang. I’d been hold­ing out for the su­per­charged ver­sion. I am told by the dealer that its re­lease has been de­layed by red tape, specif­i­cally Aus­tralian De­sign Rules. Is there an up­date on this and the ex­tent of the likely de­lay as I would pre­fer not to fit the af­ter­mar­ket kit? Mark McDer­mott, email Ford spokesman Wes Sher­wood says: “Mus­tang is one of the most cus­tomised cars in the world and these kinds of up­grades are part of the over­all global strat­egy. In Aus­tralia, we’re still in the early phases of launch and are con­cen­trat­ing on ful­fill­ing the sub­stan­tial or­der bank due to the en­thu­si­asm and de­mand for Mus­tang. Over time, we will take ad­van­tage of what’s avail­able to keep Mus­tang on top of cus­tomer shop­ping lists.” The full story is that the car cur­rently does not pass drive-by noise reg­u­la­tions in Aus­tralia but there are solid plans for an of­fi­cial fac­tory su­per­charged ver­sion in 2018.


Two weeks ago we bought a Toy­ota LandCruiser Sa­hara 200 Se­ries and have done 1000km of long-dis­tance high­way driv­ing. We have no­ticed that it doesn’t want to change into sixth gear by it­self when set on cruise con­trol and trav­el­ling at 100km/h on flat roads. Our dealer in­forms us that you need to be do­ing 110km/h for sixth gear to en­gage. When cruise con­trol isn’t en­gaged, you can get it to se­lect sixth by us­ing the throt­tle. We wouldn’t have thought that this was a nor­mal sit­u­a­tion for cruise con­trol. Do you know of this issue and, fur­ther, has Toy­ota sup­plied a pro­gram­ming change for the transmission which changes the shift pat­tern? It also seems to change down very quickly at the slight­est hill. We are not yet tow­ing our 21-foot car­a­van. Chris­tine and Leigh Smith, email The LandCruiser has been like this since the ar­rival of the 200 Se­ries and Toy­ota says it’s be­cause the car is geared for use in Europe and also for fuel econ­omy. I’ve re­ceived a lot of com­plaints since it was launched on this topic with no real help from Toy­ota Aus­tralia.


Good luck to your reader in get­ting com­pen­sa­tion for the cracked sun­roof on her Range Rover Evoque. My 2012 Evoque Pres­tige was found to have a leak­ing wind­screen washer con­tainer, less than four years old but months out of warranty. I was ad­vised by Cus­tomer Care that, even if the prob­lem was found to be a man­u­fac­tur­ing fault, there would still be no com­pen­sa­tion. When re­moved, the plas­tic con­tainer was found to have a hole caused by it rub­bing against en­gine parts. I would call that bad de­sign but I was left to pay $500 to re­place it. Shane Grigg, email That’s not a good out­come for any­one.


I’m in the mar­ket for a new ve­hi­cle and if the new Nissan Mu­rano that we saw in New York a cou­ple of weeks back was on the cards for Aus­tralia I’d be keen to test drive. It is pos­si­bly the smartest look­ing SUV l’ve seen in re­cent times. In fact it’s a stun­ner. Maybe you could ask Nissan be­cause they were less than forth­com­ing to this humble writer. I’m only sorry I did not take pho­to­graphs, as I’m sure other read­ers would be equally in­trigued. Ge­orge Beat­tie, email Un­for­tu­nately it’s the same an­swer as for the Nissan Max­ima, which ex­cited another Carsguide reader. Nissan Aus­tralia spokesman Peter Fadeyev replies: “No

Well, well: High-set HR-V gets full-size spare; Com­modore Sport­wagon fits ba­bies and gear

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