NQN: Who do you trust?

CarDealerPicThe poor misunderstood car salesperson has copped it once again in the annual Readers Digest survey of the most trusted professions in New Zealand.

Car salespeople are once again ranked in 46th place out of 49 professions.

However, they can take some solace in the fact that they are rated ahead of politicians, sex workers, door-to-door salespeople, and telemarketers. Continue reading “Who do you trust?” »

News: Polish WRC debut beckons Paddon

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Kiwi rally duo Hayden Paddon and John Kennard are looking forward to getting back into their Hyundai i20 WRC car as they contest the Lotos Rally Poland for the first time from June 26 to 29.

They aren’t the only World Rally Championship crews making their maiden run on Poland’s fast, flowing gravel stages.

“The Polish event was last part of the WRC in 2009 and while some drivers have done this event as a round of the Intercontinental Rally Challenge (IRC) or the European Rally, it is relatively new for most of our competitors,” says Paddon. Continue reading “Polish WRC debut beckons Paddon” »

News: Suzuki releases innovative fuel cell power unit

Press-1405-Fuel-Cell-Power-UnitSuzuki has announced it’s Gen4 air-cooled fuel cell power unit which it says is easily integrated into two-wheel and four-wheeled vehicles.

“Suzuki’s work on next generation power plants has technology reaching production-ready stage and the company will also make it available to other manufacturers,” says Suzuki New Zealand chief executive officer Tom Peck.

The Gen4 is the result of a working collaboration with the British international power technology company Intelligent Energy and Suzuki.

Incorporating Intelligent Energy’s latest proprietary fuel cell technology, Gen4 is a power-dense, compact and self-contained system. Rated for continuous operation at 3.9kW and capable of providing in excess of 4kW for short periods, the power unit is designed as a prime-mover power source for smaller fuel cell electric vehicles and also as a range extender for larger vehicles. Continue reading “Suzuki releases innovative fuel cell power unit” »

Holden: Holden: 2014 Calais-V Sportwagon review

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holden-calais-2014-frontEvery time I read Calais, I immediately think Dover. They were the two ports at either end of the ferry across the English Channel to France, until it was superseded by the Channel Tunnel, which was wholly more efficient (than the ferry, that is, not France…although France has a reputation of being inefficient).

I wonder whether that’s how the Holden Calais-V feels: usurped by changing technology and a move towards smaller, more efficient cars. It would be wrong, though. There’s something noble about being on the waves, using brute force against the elements. Continue reading “Holden: 2014 Calais-V Sportwagon review” »

News: Macan critical to Porsche sales success

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Porsche has just launched three versions of its all-new mid-size Macan SUV onto the New Zealand market, with the diesel version being the entry level version.

The 3-litre Macan S turbo diesel is priced from $118,000, the 3-litre V6 Macan S is priced from $121,000, and the 3.6-litre Macan Turbo is priced from $156,000.

Porsche general manager Greg Clarke says the Macan SUV is a critical new model for Porsche New Zealand as well as the brand globally. Continue reading “Macan critical to Porsche sales success” »

Blogs: Doing what SUVs do

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IMG_0253As evidenced by our previous long-term experience in a Holden Volt, the team here at Auto Media Group are big funs of cars with plugs. Or more precisely cars that plug-in.

And so we are undertaking the experiment again, spending a month with Mitsubishi’s Outlander PHEV – Plug-in Hybrid Vehicle – to get an idea about life with a lot less petrol. Continue reading “Doing what SUVs do” »

News: Mazda gets mad with Mike

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Mazda New Zealand will be getting a healthy dose of madness over the coming year as they hitch a ride with drifting superstar Mike Whiddett.

Known to millions as ‘Mad Mike’, Whiddett has won drifting championship titles from all four corners of the globe, indisputably lives up to the title mad, and is now proudly supported by Mazda New Zealand.

Truly fanatical about Mazda, Mike currently pilots the MADBUL RX-7 and BADBUL RX-8, both of which have earned cult status of their own – fully customised from the ground up, they have been voted the world’s best looking drift cars. Continue reading “Mazda gets mad with Mike” »

News: Toyota backing for Karts

tytaIn its latest move to help develop young Kiwi motorsport talent, Toyota Racing New Zealand will back this year’s KartSport New Zealand National Schools’ Championship in Palmerston North next month.

The two-day Toyota Racing New Zealand 2014 National Schools Championship meeting will be contested at the KartSport Manawatu club’s Manawatu Toyota Raceway over the July 12-13 weekend.

Convenor John Paddy expects more than 120 school-age karters to make the trip to the Manawatu to fight for school and individual class honours. Continue reading “Toyota backing for Karts” »