MY WHEELS

Some peo­ple hit the nail on the head the first time while oth­ers have to go back to the draw­ing board. Ei­ther way, these read­ers are quite happy with their ve­hi­cles and car­a­vans.

Go! Camp & Drive - - Contents -

Tough enough

2015 TOY­OTA FOR­TUNER 3.0 D-4D He might have to wait a few years be­fore own­ing his dream Prado, but Jo­hann van der Merwe from Sch­weizer Reneke is quite con­tent with his flaw­less For­tuner.

A good tow­ing ve­hi­cle needs to be pow­er­ful enough to pull a car­a­van, and af­ter briefly look­ing at the Ford Ranger, I de­cided on this used For­tuner that I picked up for R320 000. I have been tow­ing my 1986 Jur­gens Fleet­line XL with the Toy­ota us­ing a stan­dard Toy­ota tow bar for a year with­out any is­sues. The Jur­gens might be an older model but it is ev­ery bit as com­fort­able and spa­cious as its mod­ern coun­ter­parts. The Toy­ota has given noth­ing but great ser­vice, but my only bug­bear is that it doesn’t have cruise con­trol, so my right foot has to keep on work­ing. The For­tuner tows with­out strain at 120 km/h, and with the car­a­van hitched it man­ages an average fuel con­sump­tion of around 10,5 ℓ/100 km. With­out the Jur­gens that fig­ure eas­ily drops to 8,3 ℓ/ 100 km. Our favourite get­away with this tow­ing com­bi­na­tion has to be the Ri­et­spruit­dam Hol­i­day Re­sort near Ven­ters­dorp. It’s very cosy there and the re­sort also has a heated swimming pool.

Dust buster

2006 JEEP CHERO­KEE 2.8 Their BMW 316 might have been big on lux­ury but it just couldn’t go all the places Christo and Al­ida Laing from Paarl wanted to go.

Af­ter driv­ing an ex­ec­u­tive sedan for five years we de­cided to get some­thing a lit­tle hardier to carry us off the beaten track. We pur­chased “Smur­fie” for R145 000 six years ago and haven’t looked back since be­cause it’s been quite re­li­able and is a pleasure to drive. I’ve had to change the tyres to a brand and type that’s more read­ily avail­able so they can be re­placed on a whim, but oth­er­wise I haven’t had to al­ter what the man­u­fac­turer’s put to­gether. My only source of ir­ri­ta­tion is the rear hatch that rat­tles on poor gravel roads. If I had a spare R10 000 I’d put the funds into a new sus­pen­sion sys­tem – par­tic­u­larly for more ground clear­ance. The Jeep has more than enough power for our usual jour­neys, but you pay for that at the pumps. Smur­fie av­er­ages around 11,7 ℓ/100 km on tar, and on 4x4 trails it can climb to as much as 20 ℓ/100 km. Our favourite trip with the Jeep was our month-long tour of Namibia, a beau­ti­ful coun­try oc­cu­pied by friendly and hos­pitable peo­ple. We vis­ited the Skele­ton Coast, Etosha, Da­ma­r­a­land and sev­eral other places.

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