Up­size the ac­tion

The Courier-Mail - Motoring - - FRONT PAGE -

The home-grown Aurion V6 only started to gain re­spect late in 2012, even out­selling the Fal­con in De­cem­ber as the fam­ily Ford started to slide. So buy­ers might have fi­nally dis­cov­ered the Aurion’s hid­den tal­ents, in­clud­ing a 0-100km/h sprint time that aces the Fal­con and Com­modore, im­pres­sive qual­ity, a big boot and a cov­eted Toy­ota badge. The 2012 cars, com­plete with su­perbly re­fined and pow­er­ful V6, are be­ing run out from $29,990 drive­away. Un­prece­dented. Down­side: overtly styled sports model, with puny fog­lights and tail-pipes. It’s easy to get lost in the maze of com­pact SUVs, which can be the only rea­son one of the pioneers is of­ten over­looked. Suzuki has added a front-drive ‘‘ur­ban’’ model to the Grand Vi­tara range, sharp­en­ing the price to $26,990 drive-away. The Nav­i­ga­tion edi­tion, pic­tured, is $29,990 drive-away with a 2.4-litre en­gine (oth­ers in this price range are 2.0s), au­to­matic trans­mis­sion, al­loy wheels, Blue­tooth with mu­sic stream­ing, rear cam­era and, as the name im­plies, a nav­i­ga­tion unit. We liked the re­vised Kia Sorento so much it made our Car of the Year top10 shootout. The Korean fam­ily wagon is well made, well equipped and nice to drive. The five-year war­ranty is a bonus. So why does it sell at a frac­tion of the rate of the other seven-seater SUVs? It’s a mys­tery to us.

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