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The Mercury Cars Guide : March 6th 2010
24--- Classifieds 62 300 400 • carsguide.com.au Saturday, March 6, 2010 This is one out of the box PRACTICAL BY NATURE: The design of the new Skoda Roomster has raised many eyebrows, but it manages to give an impressive ride and offers a great deal of storage space. email@example.com with KEITH DIDHAM 'The Roomster's styling is brave, but it gets a big tick for versatility, and that's the point Skoda should hammer home to buyers.' Keith Didham SKODA'S Roomster is a per- fect example that you shouldn't judge a book by its proverbial cover --- or in this case, a vehicle by its looks, its name or even its colour. Few vehicles I have driven in the past year have attracted so much comment --- and most of it is not flattering of Skoda. That has been reflected in sales of the Czech-built Roomster around the country, which have bombed. That's a pity. OK, the Roomster's styling is brave, but it gets a big tick for its versatility, and that's the point Skoda should be hammering home to buyers. Is it a five-seat mini people-mover? Is it a voluminous windowed van? Or is it a funky city commuter? It's all that and more, the true practical rather than lifestyle car. Trying to pigeonhole the unconven- tional against traditional car design is impossible. The Roomster's nearest competitor, I suppose, is its VW cousin, the Caddy, or to a lesser degree Citroen's Berlingo. Skoda also sees the cheaper Honda Civic, Subaru Impreza and Mazda3 as competitors. At first glance the Roomster, with its slab-sided design and odd window line, is puzzling --- you get the feeling it was designed by a committee. Skoda admits it borrowed bits from other models from its and VW's stable: the front end came from the Skoda Fabia/VW Polo, the rear axle design is a Skoda Octavia, and the rear platform is all an older-gen- eration VW Golf. But that boxy design means it's clever when it comes to load carry- ing ability. You can remove the rear seats, with some effort mind you, which increases the load space to an impressive 1780 litres. And just because it looks odd doesn't mean it is cheap and nasty. This one comes with a five-star crash rating and most of the modern-day safety stuff such as anti-lock brakes, more airbags than a politician on the hustings, and stability and traction control. There are not a lot of options to tick either. You can have a choice of a mediocre 1.6-litre petrol engine (which drinks premium unleaded) for $25,990 and is mated to a five- speed manual, or if you pay $2300 more, an optional six-speed auto. If diesel is your fancy there's a stronger 1.9-litre turbo diesel with manual gearbox for $27,990. And no, you can't have the diesel with an auto, it's not on the Skoda menu. The money buys a car with com- prehensive kit, including remote locking, power windows (I can't remember the last car with manual winders), heated door mirrors, auto airconditioning, cruise control, trip computer, a full-sized spare and alloy wheels. There is an eight-speaker audio system, which in the test car sounded cheap and tinny. Nothing wrong with the Room- ster's drive though. Apart from its overly sensitive steering, it handles better than expected, is comfortable, frugal and, above all, versatile. For once the car lives up to its name. And from the inside you can't see the exterior styling. www.djmotors.com.au firstname.lastname@example.org Glenorchy 275 Main Road, Glenorchy Phone: 6 213 3 315 Brian Anning 0418 531 853 Chris Wakefield 0400 635 446 Allan Gebel 0428 729 659 Hobart 1a Brisbane Street, Hobart Phone: 6213 3300 Warren Amos 0417 544 829 Jason Spong 0408 473 756 Easy finance available with DJ Financial Services 04 HOLDEN One Tonner 3.8 litre automatic, dual airbags, power windows, power mirrors, alloy wheels, ABS brakes, tow bar. Stock No. 322287 09 HOLDEN Captiva LX 2.0 litre turbo diesel automatic, 7 seats, cruise/ climate/stability/traction control, reverse parking sensors, six airbags, 18" alloys. Stock No. 322292 05 HYUNDAI Elantra FX 2.0 litre 5-speed manual, dual airbags, power windows and mirrors, cruise control, ABS brakes. Stock No. 322282 $10 .00 per day†1 $23.50 per day†2 $6.50 per day†1 †To approved business clients only, with a $2,500 deposit over five years with a 30% residual payment. Interest rate: 1. 12.50%. 2.11.20% WAS $41,990 NOW $40,990DRIVE AWAY WA S $18,990 NOW $17,990 DRIVE AWAY WA S $12,990 NOW $11,990 DRIVE AWAY Only 9,0000km www.djmotors.com.au email@example.com 281 Main Road, Glenorchy Phone: 6213 3315 Brian Anning 0418 531 853, Chris Wakefield 0400 635 446, Allan Gebel 0428 729 659 Hobart Great Wall $23,990. Drive away. The V240 4x2 Ute -- Leather trimmed seats, airbags, CD/radio, ABS/EBD, air conditioning, electric windows, alloy wheels and a 3-year/100,000km warranty... Great. 4x4 $3,000 extra. Metallic paint $350 extra. The Great Cars of China are here! $23,990. Drive away. The X240 4WD -- Leather trimmed seats, airbags, CD/radio/mp3, ABS, climate control, electric windows/mirrors/driver s seat, alloy wheels and a 3-year/100,000km warranty... Great. Metallic paint $350 extra.
February 27th 2010
March 13th 2010