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The Mercury Cars Guide : January 31st 2009
8— CARSguide Classifieds 62 300 400 • carsguide.com.au Mad rush expected for GT-R Ifyouplan tobe cruising in thenew NissanGT-R— andare yet to put inanorder—you better hurry. KevinHepworth checks out the car that’s flying out the door ORDERS are continuing to roll in for Nissan’s iconic GT-R, with almost 75 per cent of this year’s allocation already sold. ‘‘The order book is sitting at about 130-140 and I am confident that all 190 cars available to us for this year will find homes,’’ Nissan Australia boss Dan Thompson says. Priced from $148,800, the GT-R is available through 11 Nissan high- performance centres in the capital cities. However, Thompson concedes that there is stillsomefine-tuning to be done on how the high-tech supercar will be serviced. ‘‘This is a whole new ball game for us—it is a great experience and there are some things we are still working through.’’ Key among those is the complex SUPERCAR: The Nissan GT-R is expected to fly out of dealership doors. servicing schedule demanded by the car’s hand-built bi-turbo 3.8-litre V6. At the launch in Japan Nissan was promising a free three-year premium performance program which includes specialised racing car-style servicing with full chassis and suspension balance as well as a precision engine tune and balance. ‘‘We have not made a final decision on how servicing will be handled in Australia but it will be at a standard commensurate with the car,’’ he said. ‘‘To have the GT-R is a very exciting thing. ‘‘It is a supercar and that is something none of our traditional competitors have in their model- ranges.’’ It seems certain that Nissan Australia will not offer the Ultimate Metal Silver finish which high- lights the range in Japan. Ultimate Silver requires a seven- coat treatment with a base coat, primer, a basic silver colour, a clear coat, the ultimate silver with higher metal content and brightness index and then two more clear coats. Nissan paint engineers concede damage to the finish could not be touched-up or even totally re- sprayed at any normal paintshop. Saturday, January 31, 2009 Chrysler says they’ll keep on cruising REPORTSof thePTCruiser’s demise may yet be premature, a Chrysler Australia spokesman says. US media quotes Chrysler presi- dent Tom LaSorda as confirming the end of production for the retro-styled sedan, launched in 2000. ‘‘Since the announcement of [the endof production]PTCruiser Cabrio last year, there have been a number of exaggerated reports announcing the end of the PT Cruiser model,’’ Chrysler Australia’s Jerry Stamoulis says. ‘‘To date, there has been no communication from the Chrysler product team that suggestsPTCruis- er production will end. ‘‘Over one million PT Cruisers have been sold worldwide and the vehicle remains an important part of our Australian portfolio.’’ Stamoulis says the quotes relate to the sale of production tooling for the PT Cruiser. ‘‘It is not unusual within Chrysler that a buyer will be sought for tooling and equipment from a model that is in the process of generational change,’’ he says. ‘‘PT Cruiser is at that stage of its model life and as I understand it Mr LaSorda’s quotes are relative to that process.’’ If the Cruiser were to be axed it would be the seventh cancelled since Cerberus Capital Management bought Chrysler in 2007. The Dodge Magnum wagon and Durango SUV, the Chrysler Cross- fire, PT Cruiser convertible, Aspen SUV and Pacifica SUV have been discontinued. Chrysler is reportedly looking to sell the Dodge Viper. KEVIN HEPWORTH
January 10th 2009
February 7th 2009