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The Mercury Cars Guide : September 25th 2010
Saturday, September 25, 2010 Classifieds 62 300 400 • carsguide.com.au ---13 YOUR SAY Letters Vito four star rating misleading' MOTOR MAIL ANCAP: The Mercedes-Benz Viano has a five star safety rating. M ercedes-Benz takes great exception to the misleading four-star rating applied to our Vito/Viano versus the five-star rating given to the Ford Transit in the used- car safety rating. In ANCAP, the Transit scored 22.53 points out of a possible 37 points, thereby barely rating three stars. The Vito/Viano rated 32.66 points out of 37 points, well into five-star territory. The Viano has always been a five-star vehicle and the Vito is five stars when fitted with the optional side airbags that are standard in the Viano. The Vito/Viano is the only five-star commercial vehicle on sale in Australia. The more recently-released VW Transporter is acknowledged by VW to be only four stars. I query the basis that Monash University used to rate a clearly less safe vehicle ahead of one that clearly demonstrates safety leadership. The misconception of this rating will lead to people choosing a less safe van with the concurrent resulting outcomes. David McCarthy Mercedes-Benz Australia The used-car ratings are compiled from real- world crashes compiled by Monash University, backed by a consortium, including the major motorists' organisations around Australia. We recognise the excellent ANCAP result for the Vito-Viano, but are not qualified to contest the used car safety scores. Ethanol catalyst G iven ethanol is a caustic fluid that corrodes unprotected steel and literally eats unprotected aluminium, it is not rocket science to work out a significant number of owners of 3-5 year-old-plus cars will soon experience fuel system problems as the ethanol, even at 10 per cent, dislodges years of crud build up. Then there's the elephant in the room. Leaded petrol was banned when catalytic converters were deemed the most cost effective way of reducing hydrocarbon emissions. Now governments mandate ethanol, which does just as good a job as tetra-ethyl lead, if not better, in degrading catalytic converters. Yes, ethanol is a renewable fuel and E85 in E85-compatible vehicles with adaptive fuel management systems will bring environmental benefits. But claims of E10 being a cleaner and greener fuel are highly debatable. Les Lyons Nicholls, ACT E10 user I would like to reply to those having problem with E10. Firstly, ethanol does not harm rubber, and all automotive rubbers have been ethanol compliant since the 1980s. But, more importantly, I would like to tell you of my experience. My daily drive is an old VH Commodore and I have been using E10 to fuel it for 5-6 years and have clocked up around 100,000km. Interestingly, it's recommended E10 not be used on this model. Well, I can tell you the car runs fine, economy is 10-11 litres/100km around town, it doesn't smoke or run bad, and yes, all the rubbers are fine. All too often E10 is wrongly blamed when engine problems arise. Lots of information from reputable research institutes document that it has no adverse affects. Daniel Rigda, email Stalking confusion A significant safety issue which has bothered me for decades could be addressed by the motoring media if it'd question the prejudice that everything from Europe, other than a Trabant, must be good. My concern is confusion of vehicles with the turn indicator stalk on the wrong side. Some will argue right-hand drive vehicles are a minority, but a standard should be mandated for safety, and predominantly left- hand drive market vehicle brands should just have to cop the tooling cost to be allowed to sell in our, and other, RHD markets. My background as a professional engineer is in vehicle element design and manufacture, and in my 50 years of driving I have owned or driven multitudes of cars, commercial and farm vehicles with all conceivable types of gadget controls. My last four years have been mostly at the wheel of a Volkswagen product. I stuff up blinker/windscreen wiper actuation most when both are required in damp to wet conditions. I would not consider another vehicle with this as I consider it an aberration to have the controls the wrong way around. What I'm mostly annoyed about, is the media recommending offending brands, and I have NEVER heard but, you'll have to cope with backwards technology''. I'll guarantee that journalists, while as professional drivers not wanting to admit to being inept, could not put their hand over their heart and vow they'd never inadvertently scratched the wipers over a dry windscreen. This should be an Australian Design Rule for Motor Vehicle Safety requirement, and I suggest it behoves the media to push for it. It would be good to hear other readers' opinions. I'm confident most would admit that it really is too difficult. I hope there are others out there who are annoyed at this, but, like me, haven't got around to spreading the opinion. Geoff Bartlett, email Yes, the Carsguide team occasionally hits the wrong stalk while going for the turn signal or wipers. But it's only once and only in the first few kilometres with an unfamiliar car. Driving properly is a skill and that includes correct operation of the controls. Also, any owner will learn the controls quickly and whatever they have becomes normal to them, something recognised by the Australian Design Rules. Turbo benefits I have owned five Saabs and 11 Fords, and in that time the Saabs have all been marginally cheaper to service and maintain. I chose Saabs because of the safety features, practicality, comfort and value-for- money cost against other European brands. Unfortunately for Saab, and me, GM bought it out and Saab has been left to languish --- which is why it's failed. I recently updated my Ford Falcon for a Ford Mondeo XR5 turbo and this is the first Ford I've owned that comes close to the Saabs for safety, comfort features and handling at a reasonable price. Among other automotive technology, Saab pioneered turbo engines to convert engine waste gases into power, thus a smaller four cylinder engine provides similar power output to many large six- cylinders. Tony O'Connor, email There is currently no Saab agent for Australia and no company willing to take on the franchise. Early European reviews of the first new model after GM ownership, the 9-5, are also surprisingly lacklustre. N T T N T 4 4 EXTRA FEATURES INCLUDE: • NUDGE BAR • SOFT TONNEAU COVER • TUB/TAILGATE LINER • TOW BAR5 • FRONT AND REAR OUTER SCUFF PLATES • SPORTS BAR • 2.5L HI-POWER TURBO DIESEL • ACTIVE STABILITY AND TRACTION CONTROL • SIDE AND CURTAIN AIRBAGS • BLUETOOTH CONNECTIVITY • 16" ALLOYS • 5 SPEED MANUAL ABN HOLDERS ONLY.4 EXCLUDES RENTAL AND GOVT BUYERS. DRIVE 3 AWAY $4 ,990 2 N S 2 THE COMPACT-SIZED SUV • 2.0L MIVEC PETROL ENGINE • 5 SPEED MANUAL • 7 AIRBAGS • ACTIVE STABILITY CONTROL • ACTIVE TRACTION CONTROL • 5 STAR ANCAP SAFETY RATING • HILL START CONTROL • CRUISE CONTROL • CLIMATE CONTROL AIR CONDITIONING DRIVE AWAY $26,990 PRIVATE BUYERS ONLY. ORTY REAR SPOILER • 16" ALLOYS ATHER STEERING WHEEL WITH AUDIO CONTROLS DAN OR HATCH • 2.0L MIVEC ENGINE • 5 SPEED MANUAL IVE STABILITY AND TRACTION CONTROL RBAGS • CRUISE CONTROL N S DRIVE 3 AWAY $2 ,990 2 OPTIONAL METALLIC/PEARLESCENT PAINT $450 EXTRA. PRIVATE BUYERS ONLY. To see all of the offers Mitsubishi is delivering visit buyamitsubishi.com.au See mitsubishi-motors.com.au for further information. Offers at participating Mitsubishi Dealers only. While stocks last. Mitsubishi Motors Australia reserves the right to extend or modify these offers. Offers available on new vehicles ordered and delivered between 10 September and 30 September 2010. Business, Fleet sales by special arrangement. †10 year or 160,000km Powertrain Warranty (whichever comes first) (non transferable). *5 year or 130,000km New Vehicle Factory Warranty (whichever comes first). ^5 years or 130,000km Roadside Assist (whichever comes first). Service conditions apply. ‡4 year or 60,000km Capped Price Servicing (whichever comes first). Covers all items specified under the standard Maintenance for Normal Operating Conditions schedule detailed in the Service and Warranty Booklet. Additional service/repair items (if required) are at additional cost. Excludes Government and Rental Fleet customers. See your Dealer for full details. 1. Price includes metallic/pearlescent paint, 12 months registration, CTP Insurance, Stamp Duty and Dealer Delivery. Offer expires 30 September, 2010. 2. Recommended selling price. 3. Drive away price includes 12 months Registration, CTP Insurance, Stamp Duty and Dealer Delivery. 4. Proof of certification required.. 5. Excludes tow ball. MMR1193/TAS/HM NEW MODELS, FEATURES, VALUE AND PEACE OF MIND. HOBART. DJ Mitsubishi. Phone 6213 3300.
September 18th 2010
October 2nd 2010