Prices hit new lows

The Weekend Post - Motoring - - MAR­KET PLACE - JOSHUA DOWL­ING NA­TIONAL MO­TOR­ING EDI­TOR joshua.dowl­

MARCH is cus­tom­ar­ily the sec­ond-big­gest month of the year for car sales. It marks the end of the Ja­pa­nese fi­nan­cial year and all the big brands push to meet an­nual tar­gets.

This year the hot deals aren’t as nu­mer­ous but there are some stun­ning bar­gains. Korean brands are tak­ing ini­tia­tives, too.

One of Aus­tralia’s cheap­est cars, the Kia Pi­canto, just lim­boed to a new low. The $14,990 drive-away au­to­matic hatch has a $777 gift card which you take off the price to make it $14,213 drive-away.

The sta­ble­mate Cer­ato sedan and hatch get the same deal: now from an as­ton­ish­ing new low of $19,213 drive-away once the voucher is cashed in — which is about $5000 off the full RRP.

Even the all-new Rio gets the $777 deal, trim­ming the price to $16,713 drive-away for an auto.

Not all Kias have drive-away prices pub­lished on­line, though. The Sorento and Sportage SUVs and the Car­ni­val peo­ple- mover get $777 off but the price of the car is open to ne­go­ti­a­tion. Aim for the RRP as your drive­away price.

The Mit­subishi Tri­ton ute has hit a new low: $32,990 drive-away if you want the fleet pack with steel wheels rather than al­loys and side steps. It’s still a great buy.

Grey no­mads take note: the Pa­jero diesel 4WD might be long in the tooth but it’s great for the long haul. It has dropped to $48,990 drive-away once all bonuses are taken into ac­count (about $10,000 off its orig­i­nal price). Get in be­fore the Pa­jero is re­tired for­ever.

If you want a Mit­subishi ASX com­pact SUV, wait a month. It’s back to $24,990 drive-away for a man­ual. It’ll be $25,000 drive-away for an auto be­fore you know it.

The Hyundai i30 is back to its sec­ond low­est price ever — $20,990 drive-away with auto once a $1000 gift card is swapped for a dis­count on the car. And the price of the sportier and more pow­er­ful i30 SR has also been sharp­ened to $24,990 drive-away for a man­ual or $26,990 for an auto once a $2000 gift card is cashed in. This is about $5800 off the full RRP.

Most metal for the money is still the Toy­ota Camry. There are lots of un­driven demon­stra­tors (reg­is­tered and de­clared as sold even though the dealer still owns them) for a re­mark­able $25,990 drive-away — or you can get a new ex­am­ple for $27,990 drive­away with sat­nav.

Honda’s web­site says there are “deals you won’t be­lieve”. But they are deals the com­pany won’t pub­lish on its web­site — which means pro­ceed with cau­tion, hag­gle hard and shop around to com­pare prices.

Mazda is back to its “free on­roads” line and not pub­lish­ing drive-away prices for most mod­els. Only the Mazda2 small car and BT50 ute have drive­away prices this month.

Holden and Ford both have drive-away prices but they’re not nec­es­sar­ily good deals.

Last month the Holden Trax could be had for $22,990 drive­away. Now it’s $27,934 drive­away. Ford’s drive-away pric­ing is not dis­counted heav­ily so go in ready to ne­go­ti­ate.

Fleet, sweet: Mit­subishi Tri­ton; left, Kia Pi­canto gets a gift

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