Be led by your heart

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I need ad­vice. I have five cars to chose from on my pur­chase list. They run from purely prac­ti­cal with a new Toy­ota RAV4 turbo diesel AWD auto, via fun and prac­ti­cal with a new Lexus IS350 F Sport or a used GS450h, to pure fun with a low-mileage Porsche Boxster S or new Lexus RC350 F Sport. What do you reckon? Peter Evans, email Go for the Porsche. You want it, you’ve earned it, you de­serve it.

A CLEAR WIN­NER

Which is the bet­ter diesel car, Mercedes GLC 250 or Audi Q5 3.0-litre? And why? Richard Dis­ton, email It’s the GLC by a clear mar­gin. It’s com­pletely new, more re­fined in all things from the cabin to the sus­pen­sion, and bet­ter value. It gets The Tick from me.

BUY THE ONE YOU LIKE

I am con­tem­plat­ing a no­vated lease for three years, that will take me to re­tire­ment, on a Subaru Lib­erty 3.6R. I would ap­pre­ci­ate your thoughts as to whether that car would be suit­able and re­li­able for a num­ber of years. Would you rec­om­mend other cars in the $45,000 bracket? Chris Tay­lor, email You should buy what you like, par­tic­u­larly with re­tire­ment loom­ing, and the Lib­erty definitely gets The Tick and will be fine as a long-term pur­chase.

FIX IS IM­MI­NENT

I bought a top-of-the-range Hyundai Elantra last Christ­mas and the car was fine un­til the weather be­came colder. It wouldn’t start prop­erly and fumes were com­ing into the in­te­rior. I con­tacted my dealer and was told Hyundai was aware of the prob­lem but it still has not been rec­ti­fied. I be­lieve this is a health is­sue as the fumes are ex­ces­sive. I am not prone to ex­ag­ger­a­tion. I love the car and I’m just want­ing the prob­lem to be rec­ti­fied. Diane Barrie, email Hyundai spokesman Bill Thomas says there is definitely a fix for your prob­lem and apol­o­gises that you were not ad­vised. Your deal­er­ship will be in touch to get the ve­hi­cle sorted.

SALES FAVOURITE

We are in our mid-60s and think­ing of down­siz­ing our Mit­subishi Pa­jero to a midrange SUV. There are so many in the mar­ket such as the Mazda CX-5, Hyundai Tuc­son and Santa Fe, Kia Sorento and Sportage, and Mit­subishi and Toy­ota mod­els. What do you think? Robin Cook, email The CX-5 is the sales favourite with peo­ple buy­ing mid-range SUVs. It seems I’m rec­om­mend­ing it ev­ery week but that’s be­cause it is a great car that gets The Tick.

VISIT A DEALER

My son is hav­ing an is­sue with a 2007 Toy­ota Yaris man­ual he bought sec­ond­hand re­cently. A week af­ter tak­ing pos­ses­sion he drove for about 15 min­utes when he was caught for some time in a sta­tion­ary traf­fic jam. The car started idling rough, then when he put it in gear the en­gine shud­dered vi­o­lently and had very lit­tle mo­men­tum. It was towed to a me­chanic who re­placed the fuel pump and spark plugs. But it is still oc­cur­ring when the car is sta­tion­ary in traf­fic for long pe­ri­ods. The fuel has been tested and was con­sid­ered fine. Colin Fowler, email I have not heard of those symp­toms so get it to a Toy­ota dealer and have them run the right di­ag­nos­tics, not just hit-and-miss stuff.

AT YOUR SER­VICE

Re com­ments on ser­vice in­ter­vals, par­tic­u­larly for the Toy­ota LandCruiser diesel. I think the car orig­i­nally was in­tended to have 20,000km in­ter­vals — that’s how early ser­vice books were printed. I think oil consumption is­sues meant Toy­ota had to shorten in­ter­vals to en­sure cars got oil and you will see Toy­ota stick­ers on in­ter­leav­ing 10,000km ser­vice pages. I think Toy­ota over-ser­vices for lit­tle rea­son. Ja­son Gil­lies, email I’ve done some dig­ging and Toy­ota has al­ways had 10,000km ser­vice in­ter­vals, which can be an­noy­ing de­spite value in the capped­price ser­vic­ing. Com­pany spokesman Mike Breen says if you have a “doc­tored” ser­vice book he would be keen to in­ves­ti­gate for you.

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