Stand out from the crowd in a Sirion

Cynon Valley - - ADVERTISEMENT FEATURE - PETER HAY­WARD news­desk@waleson­

DAIHATSU stopped im­port­ing cars into Bri­tain in 2011 be­cause the ex­change rate meant they made too lit­tle profit.

So the youngest – apart from a very few far east­ern im­ports – dates from then.

It was a shame they stopped sell­ing here, be­cause the Sirion in par­tic­u­lar was a great small car well worth con­sid­er­ing against any of the other su­per­mi­nis on the mar­ket.

And al­though they are no longer sold, spares are still avail­able be­cause they are still on the mar­ket in many other coun­tries, and most garages can ser­vice them.

If you’re look­ing for a seven or eight-year-old five-door su­per­mini that stands out from the crowd and has an ex­cel­lent re­li­a­bil­ity record, the Sirion is well worth con­sid­er­ing.

It only sold in fairly small numbers here so there aren’t that many about, but they are amaz­ingly spa­cious in­side, and have a very com­fort­able ride.

They’re all based n the Toy­ota Yaris of the pe­riod and have the same 1.0-litre, 1.3 and 1.5 petrol en­gines, with power out­puts of 68, 86 and 103bhp.

All are eco­nom­i­cal, but the will­ing and lively 1.0 and 1.3 mod­els are the best. The 1.5 is a lit­tle gruff and only marginally quicker than the 1.3.

Chunky good looks are backed up by very good abil­ity and you get a more prac­ti­cal five door for the same price as other car mak­ers’ three doors.

Per­for­mance is fair in the 1.0-litre and bet­ter in the 1.3 and it’s matched by very safe road­hold­ing, with strong grip even though there is some roll.

The han­dling, with pos­i­tive and di­rect power steer­ing and safe road man­ners, is good enough to match many oth­ers in the class.

I once drove 500 miles in a day in one and was still en­joy­ing it when I got back home. It was rea­son­ably re­fined, com­fort­able for that long pe­riod and very ca­pa­ble even on the mo­tor­way.

Equip­ment is good as stan­dard and the in­te­rior qual­ity is up with the best. The cheap­est Sirion 1.0 S comes with four airbags, air con­di­tion­ing, heigh­tad­justable steer­ing, re­mote lock­ing, four elec­tric win­dows and colour keyed bumpers.

Move up to SE spec and you get al­loy wheels and rear park­ing sen­sors so it’s well worth hunt­ing for.

Econ­omy should be a real-road 45mpg in the 1.0-litre and only a lit­tle less in the 1.3 – which is no­tice­ably quicker.

In­surace is rea­son­able and emis­sions, as you might ex­pect, are al­most up to the present day.

Daihatsu Sirion

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