May 29th, 2013 by Darren Cottingham
As New Zealand is the only country in the world still selling the i45 (which is a rebadged Sonata), let’s have a look at whether you’d get one of those or the i40.
i45 side view
We took an (almost) back-to-back test of the two cars. First, you would expect because the i45 has 5 more of Hyundai’s ‘i’ points over the i40, that it would be more expensive, like a Mazda6 is more expensive than a Mazda3, but it’s not. The four-model i45 range starts at Continue reading “Hyundai i40 CRDi Elite 2013 vs Hyundai i45 Elite Ltd 2013 – Review” »
May 28th, 2013 by Darren Cottingham
If we’re talking movies, the last one in the trilogy is usually the worst. Most often it’s the first, and sometimes it’s the second (like The Empire Strikes Back and Aliens). This Mazda6 LTD sedan is the third in the trilogy of test cars Mazda NZ bestowed on us, but it’s no Return of the Jedi.
We started with the base model GLX, had a small intermission for an ice cream before getting the better-endowed GSX (both as station wagons), and now the Continue reading “Mazda Mazda6 LTD Sedan 2013 Review” »
May 23rd, 2013 by Darren Cottingham
The Aurion is the car that almost bridges the gap between Toyota and Lexus. You get the same 200kW, 336Nm, 3.5-litre V6 that you’ll find in an RX350 and, while the interior is not quite Lexus standard, it’s perfectly acceptable (with a few minor foibles I’ll get to later).
It’s not rear-wheel drive, so in this segment you’ll have to look to a Falcon or Commodore to get your steering-on-the-throttle kicks (and even that’s been reigned in with the current traction control settings in most cars). Anyway, the Aurion is not
Continue reading “Toyota Aurion Sportivo ZR6 2013 Review” »
May 13th, 2013 by Darren Cottingham
When you want one of the best-looking station wagons out there to have a little more pep than the base model GLX, but not the largesse of the top-of-the-range LTD, then you go for the GSX.
This review outlines the differences between the base model GLX and this mid-range GSX. Check out the GLX article for a more comprehensive overview of the Mazda6 model itself (clicking opens it in a new window so you won’t lose your place here).
With 500cc more than the GLX Mazda6, the engine is now a shade under 2.5 litres. You’ve got 24 more Continue reading “Mazda Mazda6 GSX 2013 Review” »
It’s a long time since I’ve driven a Nissan Pulsar. It was a second hand version of the hot GTi-R, and it was a few years ago. In fact, the GTi-R is the only exciting Pulsar ever to have been produced. You’ll usually see them driven by the youth of the day, and sporting a big bore exhaust to get your attention.
Now we have a new one. It’s not really that exciting, but it does have a couple of tricks that will make you sit up and listen. A big bore exhaust isn’t one of them, but a big Continue reading “Nissan Pulsar Ti 2013 Review” »
April 30th, 2013 by darren
Social influence is one of the phrases du jour of digital marketing. It means that rather than advertising influencing you, you are more moved by what others say: reviews, word of mouth, celebrity endorsements, what your friends say, and so on.
It’s one of the regular features of having this writing gig that people ask me what car they should buy. I usually respond by telling them to buy one they can afford (you’d be surprised at how many don’t), and I try to avoid recommending specific makes and models because I don’t want to be responsible if they happen to buy one that was put together last thing on a Friday afternoon and has been subsequently used as a mobile P lab. Continue reading “Volkswagen Golf TSI 2013 Review” »
April 19th, 2013 by darren
Has Mazda made the perfect station wagon? I liked the previous Mazda6, but I like this one more. A lot more. It’s got the kind of lines that only premium executive grand tourers used to have. It’s a large car. In fact, it’s quite a lot larger than the previous model at 4870mm long – is Mazda going after the space that the Holden Commodore and Ford Falcon are struggling with?
However, because of Mazda’s SkyActiv technology and engineering philosophy, it’s lighter and more economical. The body is around 30% more rigid but because Mazda uses ultra-high strength steel, it can manufacture it more economically to weigh less.
Adding to the fuel economy benefits of it being lighter are the new two-litre, four-cylinder engines and their stop/start technology that turns the engine off when you’re stationary; finally, the Mazda6 has Continue reading “Mazda Mazda6 GLX Petrol 2013 Review” »
April 15th, 2013 by darren
Before the words ‘compact SUV’ were ever uttered, Subaru was making all-wheel drive passenger cars and station wagons with better ground clearance. Now the Forester sits in the midst of one of the fastest growing market segments with its Symmetrical All Wheel Drive (which works full-time), SI-Drive, X-Mode for hill climbs and descents and 220mm ride height, but car-like handling.
Let’s cut to the chase: the Forester is an extremely competent all-rounder. For light off-roading, towing (up to 1500kg), transporting people, road trips, supermarket runs and the morning commute the Forester isn’t necessarily the best-in-class for each one, but Continue reading “Subaru Forester 2.5i Sport 2013 Review” »