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The Mercury Cars Guide : November 28th 2009
8--- Classifieds 62 300 400 • carsguide.com.au Saturday, November 28, 2009 Root-and-branch revamp INVICIBLE: Toyota Prado tackles the twists and turns. Mum's runs to the school and shops will never be the same again for friends and fans of the Toyota Prado. Paul Gover reports We honestly believe with the technology in this vehicle...this is a very good value-for- money offering in the marketplace' AROOT-AND-BRANCH revamp of Australia's favourite mid-sized SUV has brought massive changes and a lot more family-friendly stuff, from a roomier cabin and seven airbags to cameras that can see all around the car. The changes for the fourth- generation LandCruiser Prado have also made it almost invin- cible in the bush, with a top-line ''crawl'' package that does every- thing but steer the car as it drives itself up and down all but the very worst off-road tracks. Toyota knows that 25 per cent of Prados sold in Australia do their work as a family hauler, but it also says they are taken off-road at least once a month. And there is huge demand for a genuine off- roader from the business and government departments --- in- cluding Telstra --- who are long- term Prado buyers. There is now a three-door Prado for the first time in a mix of 14 models with V6 petrol and the popular turbodiesel engines, as well as manual and automatic gearboxes. All-wheel drive is standard, with low-range gears, locking differen- tials and a multi-terrain system on some models that gives a set- and-forget selection of driving conditions. But . . there are a few buts. The starting price for a Prado is now a whopping $55,990 and the flagship Kakadu model costs $88,990 --- it has put on at least 150 kilograms --- at the expense of performance in the turbodiesel models and what was an eight- seater cabin is now only good for seven people. ''What we have to judge with pricing is the reaction of the marketplace. We honestly believe with the technology in this vehicle . . . this is a very good value-for- money offering in the market- place,'' says Toyota Australia head of sales and marketing Dave But- tner. Toyota Australia is already hold- ing more than 1800 orders for the new Prado, which it says proves its popularity. And Buttner says those are or- ders which are not dependent on the sticker prices. The new Prado is called ''all-new'' by Toyota and that means all new body panels, although some of the mechanical package including the diesel engine is carried over. The V6 gets a lot of tweaking for more power and torque. Fuel economy is better on all models despite the weight gain and the range of improvements in- cludes a sliding centre seat an electric up- and-down package for the third-row seat in upscale models, with a locking door stay and spare wheel cover across the lineup. ''With new Prado we have suc- cessfully improved on -road and off- road performance, at the same time,'' says the car's Japanese chief engineer Makoto Arimoto. ''We wanted comfort and peace of mind, any time and anywhere. LandCru- iser Prado spends more than 90 per cent of its time in the city (but) even if people rarely take the vehicle off- road, they want the peace of mind.'' driving The new Prado has been a long time coming, with a seven-year gap from the previous all-new model, so there is a lot to like. The cabin is comfier and more luxurious, the ride is more compliant, and there is a bit more width inside which will be appreciated by families. The tweaked V6 is more spritely with 200 kW, even if 78 per cent of buyers go for the largely unchanged turbodiesel. Toyota says there is more usable pulling power but I found the step- off in town was fairly dozy and the Prado was lacking overtaking punch beyond 90km/h and that's not good. It is quieter and more refined, and driving the full-loaded Kakadu --- with satnav and sunroof and leather and rear DVD player --- is very enjoyable in all conditions. The Prado cruises easily on the freeway while sipping at around 9.8L/100km and in the bush . . . well, it's just brilliant and way ahead of my off-road ability. It conquers conditions which look impossible, from giant gnarly uphill climbs to stony twisting descents and the latest mechanical package particularly the ''crawl'' function --- means it so easy to drive. Prado buyers might not want to scratch their new paintwork but secondhand buyers are going to love the package in a couple of years. It's important to remember the Prado is a LandCruiser with a full- ladder chassis and long-travel suspension, but that also means it is big and tough. It's not the easiest thing to park, even with a rear-view camera on every model these days, or the most spritely SUV in the business. But there is something for Tilford Trade Clearance Centre TONY: 0417 569 323 ROD: 0419 122 991 56b Gormanston Road Moonah Finance Available TAP 6273 8533 www.tilford.com.au CHEAP CHEAP CARS & COMMERCIALS Hobart's true & original Trade Clearance Centre Wholesale & Trade welcome CARS 90 Holden Barina Hatch $1,750 5 door, t-bar auto, 4/10 reg, economical 95 Mazda 121 Bubble $2,500 2/10 reg, 5 speed manual, neat & tidy 95 Peugeot 306 XR Hatch $3,000 5 speed, white paint, 175,000kms p/s, a/c 97 Ford Mondeo Sedan $3,750 T-bar auto, excellent test, p/s, a/c 97 Ford Festiva Hatch $4,500 5 door, 155,000kms, 5 speed, immaculate 96 VS Holden Commodore Wagon $4,500 T-bar, auto, very neat & tidy, p/s, a/c 96 Toyota Corolla Conquest Sedan $5,000 5 speed, 164,000 kms, 1.8ltr, p/s, a/c 96 Holden Astra GSI Hatch $5,500 Alloy wheels, 5 speed, tidy, p/s, a/c 96 Hyundai Lantra Sportswagon $5,500 T-bar auto, 1.8ltr fuel injected, p/s, a/c 01 Honda Accord VTI-L $9,000 4 cyl, leather trim, 126,000kms, auto 03 BA Ford Futura Wagon $15,000 T-bar, auto, cruise, alloys, p/s, a/c COMMERCIALS 87 Nissan Navara 4x2 D/cab $3,750 6 seater, diesel engine, 5 speed 98 Toyota Rav 4 Wagon $10,000 5 door, 5 speed, neat & tidy, p/s 01 Ford Escape XLS Wagon $10,000 3.0ltr V6 engine, auto, immaculate, p/s, a/c 99 Ford Courier 4x2 D/Cab $12,500 95,000kms, 5 speed, immaculate, p/s, a/c 02 Mazda E2000 LWB Van $12,750 5 speed, 106,000kms, roof rack, p/s, a/c 02 Toyota Hilux 4x2 F/Tray $13,000 3.0ltr diesel, 5 speed, alloy tray, p/s, a/c 03 BA Ford Falcon F/Tray $13,000 T-bar Auto, alloy wheels, tidy, p/s, a/c 00 Ford Transit People Mover $13,500 12 seater, 2.0ltr engine, 5 speed, p/s, a/c 02 Honda CRV Sports Wagon $16,500 Only 102,000kms, 5 speed, alloys, p/s, a/c 95 Toyota Landcruiser $18,000 4x4, flat tray, 4.2ltr diesel, manual, neat & tidy 04 Ford Courier XLT 4x4 D/Cab $20,000 Turbo diesel, 5 speed, alloys, racks, p/s, a/c • Automatic • All Electrics • Air conditioning • 105lW economical 2.0 lt engine • ABS/EBD • MP3/CD • Speed sensitive door locks • Seat belt pre-tensioners and many superb features 06/07 Hyundai SX Elantra 2018478-48 Cnr Harrington and Bathurst Streets, Hobart. Ph 6237 1199 autorent.com.au Vehicle for illustration purposes only. Prices don't include the 3% Government Stamp Duty and $23.90 transfer fee. HUGE RANGE OF OTHER LATE MODEL CARS AVAILABLE - OPEN 9-5 SAT & SUN AnewcarAnewcar OPEN ALL WEEKEND New technology abounds in a sleek and desirable new shape. From Only $13,990 EVEN LESS WITH YOUR TRADE-IN!
November 21st 2009
December 5th 2009