Tune-up may fix a thirsty is­sue

NT News - Motoring - - CARS GUIDE -

Q: The dash screen in my 5.0-litre V8 Ford Fair­lane AUII shows that its av­er­age fuel con­sump­tion is 18 litres/100km, which doesn’t seem right, as I’m 59 and a slow driver. Do you think just a tune-up is re­quired, that the screen is get­ting the fuel use wrong, or could it be some­thing more sin­is­ter? Ron Lind­say, e-mail. A: The con­sump­tion does seem to be higher than it should be. Ford’s claim when the AUII was launched was 9 litres/100km on the high­way, 14.5 litres/100km around town with an av­er­age of 11 litres/100km. The fuel con­sump­tion shown on the trip com­puter is usu­ally ac­cu­rate, as it ac­tu­ally mea­sures the fuel be­ing in­jected into the en­gine. It’s prob­a­bly time it had a tune, so I would sug­gest you do that.

Q: I am an­other one who hates the rear view mir­rors that dis­tort the view and can­not un­der­stand why man­u­fac­tur­ers foist them upon us. If we were to re­place them with the nor­mal type would we be mod­i­fy­ing our ve­hi­cle and oc­cur the wrath of the in­surance com­pa­nies for do­ing it? Don Cru­den, Jane Brook, WA.

While the car is at the deal­ers you have some ne­go­ti­at­ing power

A: I don’t be­lieve you would be at risk of of­fend­ing the in­surance com­pa­nies but, if you were con­cerned, speak to your in­surance com­pany and ask them that very ques­tion.

Q: The nav­i­ga­tion maps that came with my 2010 Holden VE Se­ries II CalaisVwagon ap­peared to be out-of-date on de­liv­ery and I com­plained to both the dealer and to Holden through the cus­tomer sat­is­fac­tion sur­vey. I asked the dealer how much it would cost to up­grade the maps, as I was told that a new re­lease of the maps had re­cently oc­curred. I was given a writ­ten quote for $500.50, which seemed very costly so I didn’t pro­ceed with the up­date. Are there any cheaper op­tions or do I need to buy a cheaper por­ta­ble satel­lite nav­i­ga­tion sys­tem? John Mitka, e-mail. A: I be­lieve you’re locked into get­ting the dealer to do the up­date when you buy a fac­tory-fit­ted sys­tem and I’m not aware of a way around that prob­lem. Your ex­pe­ri­ence is well worth not­ing for oth­ers who might be tak­ing de­liv­ery of a new car. It’s a good idea to check the maps that come with the car, as they are of­ten well out-of-date, and de­mand they be up­dated be­fore you drive away in the car. While the car is at the deal­ers you have some ne­go­ti­at­ing power. Once you drive away it’s much harder.

Q: My 2005 Kia Optima 2.7-litre V6 sedan has done 34,000km and hasn’t missed a beat since I pur­chased it, but there is a prob­lem of the auto trans­mis­sion flar­ing. I am not a lead foot, but ac­cel­er­at­ing nor­mally causes the en­gine to race, un­til even­tu­ally the car catches up to the en­gine. When I con­tacted Kia about this they said it was nor­mal be­cause it was an ‘‘in­tu­itive’’ trans­mis­sion.

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