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  Reply # 1219042 21-Jan-2015 13:06
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we paid ~24k for a 2011 Mitsubishi Outlander VR.

If you desperately want leather etc you'll need to go for the VRX and go a bit earlier (2008). We get ~9L/100 highway and 11-12L/100 city. Space for 2 child seats and another kid in the back with a good sized boot.

3rd row of seats are a bit of a joke and you have very little boot space with them up though.

I steered well clear of Territories - the number of potential expensive faults is extensive (things like transmission, clutch, suspension, rust). Toyota highlanders are nice but about $10k premium on top of an Outlander for the base model.

The Outlander is a pretty small SUV but has a good amount of space inside. Has been really useful and far more spacious than my Caldina. Plus you could get one less than 10 years old easily with your money.

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  Reply # 1219043 21-Jan-2015 13:06
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Just upgraded Oct last year, I looked online read allsorts about multiple vehicles that’s me I like to research.
VW
Put a hold on a VW Passat and over the waiting period researched it to death and a Tourag - loved the car the Passat to drive but looking online you MUST SERVICE properly at recommended intervals or you can get expensive issues so if you get an import only get one with a FULL service history. The one that landed for me seemed to have issues that I did not want to take the risk on. * FSI V6 (like GDI) great when it works but all these direct injection engines gum up due to the emission controls the exhaust gases being recirculated, the only engine that fixes this issue is a version of the Toyota V6 used in the Lexus that has additional fuel injection jets in the inlet manifold this allows you to use a cleaner in the fuel to clean the inlet valves. Basically a gummed up engine is not good. * Drive Train - Really sophisticated and great when newish but will cost you when it breaks, look online.

Subaru Outback - I liked the look of the 2009 up models I looked at the Outback wanted the boxer 6 Cylinder so you would have power when you need it to tow or when fully loaded unfortunately they hold their price for a low kms vehicle. But worth a look if you can get one.

Mitsubishi Outlander – seemed nice to sit in and well spec’ed, but didn’t go that way look again for a V6 due to the size of the vehicle, and check it’s not a GDI as above for VW FSI.

Mazda CX7 – Nice wagon they seem to hold resale value the only thing that put me off this vehicle is that it’s a large wagon with a 4 Cylinder Turbo I expect the turbo could go wrong as they do and it maybe a cost to replace.

Transmissions Most if not all Japanese imports are Automatic and newer ones can be CVT (Constant Velocity Transmissions) these are great on fuel, but not so much if you need to tow things. Researching CVT’s in domestic cars seem that they don’t last long term without issues; for now that is this is where transmissions are going but for now I would avoid.  

What I bought Toyota – Vanguard (LWB Rav4) V6 2007 – 2012 – generation 4.3 . This has a good amount of space an award winning V6 that if you drive with a light foot will give you great fuel economy VVTI engine but if you plant the foot down will get you to 100Kmh in a little over 6 seconds, the transmission is a normal reliable 5 speed automatic has an advanced vehicle stability control system that even turns the steering wheel in the right direction if you loose control plus has 8 airbags. What’s not good no spare wheel (uses a tub of glue and an air compressor apparently it’s the way of the future) although you can get one that looks the same and is called a RAV4 (although it looks like a Vanguard) with an external spare wheel. I’m getting a space saver for the boot.

And the price is in your budget, I bought mine with 59k on the clock for $18k, and in perfect condition so they they are around.

Afterthoughts All imports apart from some European ones should have their stereos replaced as mine had a touch screen with backing cameras and spoke in Japanese plus showed Japanese maps J anyway budget between $600 - $1200 to upgrade the unit.

k14

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  Reply # 1219051 21-Jan-2015 13:14
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k14: I went through the exact same process as you are now this time last year. We had our first child in April last year. Our Subaru Outback was getting a bit high kms so we decided to get rid of it and I ended up buying a 2005 VW Touareg.


Nice to drive but I have heard and seen shocking things re: reliability and cost of repairs/maintenance - how have you found it? Did you get any kind of warranty?

Friend of mine had a 2006 model v8 and it nearly bankrupted him keeping it on the road!

Yes there are a few bad stories about reliability and that is the reason I opted for the V6 vs V8. They get similar fuel mileage but the V6 is a lot less cost maintenance wise. The V6 has chain driven cams (V8 has belt) and also the V6 usually doesn't come with the adjustable air suspension (V8 always does). Both of those things mean the V6 is a lot cheaper to maintain (air suspension is notorious for failing and costing big $$ to fix). So far the only issue I have had with it is the rear boot dampers failing. Cost me $200 to get a new set off ebay and installed them in an afternoon using videos off youtube. I don't have a warranty as I imported it myself from Japan through a company called carwebs.

Fingers crossed it keeps going like it is. As with all cars the horror stories are the ones you read, people don't tend to preach how reliable their cars are??

I am just at the moment looking at putting in one of the android headunits and wiring up a reverse camera. There are some cool headunits for under $500 that run android and slot right in. The standard japanese one it came with was useless.

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  Reply # 1219073 21-Jan-2015 13:33
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can you use an existing camera for any new headunit?

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  Reply # 1219077 21-Jan-2015 13:38
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You should be able to; wiring these camera up can be a problem though, worst case you can get an installer to work out when the wires go. My car has two cameras one down the passenger side and the one on the back.

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  Reply # 1219078 21-Jan-2015 13:38
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I've had a Territory and an Outlander in the last 12 months. The Territory was a great family car, with heaps of room and very versatile BUT they cost a fortune to run. It was costing about $140-150 to do 450kms around town. There's a reason we used to have a car park full of them at work and now there are none.

When the lease was up I cashed in my car allowance I went and bought a 2010 Mitsubishi Outlander LS with 41kms. It cost $24k with new tyres and a towbar. Really good car for a family if you can cope with the CVT. lots of room and very versatile. Wasn't too bad on gas, about 66% of what the Territory used for similar distances. I ended up selling it late last year and buying a Caldina, which is barely big enough for us but is cheap to run and allowed me to retire some debt for a while (we are a single income family as we have a 6 month old so just pulled back some of our outgoings for a while).

We also had a RAV4 over Christmas for about 3 weeks. Drove better than the Outlander (5 stage auto) and was good on gas. The back windows on the new shape are hopeless for little kids though, we couldn't figure out why the 3 year old was being a little toad until we realised she couldn't see out of the windows and was bored off her nut. The load space was a bit funny too as the full size spare tyre meant it needed a funny bulge in the load space. The older ones arent like that but they do have the funny back door instead of a hatch. Unfortunately I hate the way the new ones look inside, I think they are just weird.

I'd definitely consider an Outlander again and a RAV4 would be a maybe for me.

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  Reply # 1219079 21-Jan-2015 13:40
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joker97: can you use an existing camera for any new headunit?


It depends. Some Toyotas have a 6V powered camera (including my Caldina), so you need to get out your soldering iron, buy a voltage regulator and muck around a bit. Kind of fun and quite geeky though :)

Factory cameras often have funny looms on them so you may need to strip them back and fluff around a bit to put an RCA plug on it.

k14

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  Reply # 1219093 21-Jan-2015 13:49
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joker97: can you use an existing camera for any new headunit?

Not sure. My car didn't have one when I bought it but with all these reports of kids being run over in driveways I am definately putting one in!

This unit here http://www.ebay.com/itm/Reverse-Camera-For-Porsche-Cayenne-vw-Touareg-vw-Tiguan-Scirocco-Uk-Seller-/351289773564?pt=UK_In_Car_Technology&hash=item51ca808dfc is pretty easy to fit (replaces one of the number plate lights) although I still have to run a cable all the way from the boot to the center console. That will give me something to do for a weekend (or 3!!).



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  Reply # 1219108 21-Jan-2015 13:53
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Yeah, a reversing camera is a nice extra. If the car doesn't come with one, i'll be installing one soon after. 

I absolutely agree that any import car needs to have a full service history or I just won't touch it. It's too risky for us. 

I don't like the SUV size, mostly. We are used to smaller cars and don't enjoy the handling of larger SUV style cars when we have driven them. Short of going for a sports SUV (not really our style) I think we might just need some time behind the wheel. 



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  Reply # 1219123 21-Jan-2015 14:07
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Sort of related, but sort of not. What sort of profit will car yards try and make from a trade in? I know this isn't an exact science, but lets say market value on a car is 30k, how low will I have to go on a car on the lot? 25k? They're still making money from that as they bought it for less than 25, and then they'll make more from the fact the trade is worth more... methinks there are dark forces at work here...

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  Reply # 1219131 21-Jan-2015 14:13
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joker97: i have a 2012 legacy with 300hp and does 800ks a tank (65L). don't know how it does it. don't want to know what happens after 100,000ks either. but it feels like a tin can compared to a VW Polo Cross.


That's REALLY interesting. I had a 2004 GTB wagon that did a similar unbelievable range given the type of car and power. I remember driving from Rolleston to Dunedin AND BACK on one tank of gas (720km!) and didn't fill it up compeltely on my return. The low fuel light had come on though.

I had questioned my sanity many times in reviewing the economy of a very fast turbo wagon but I'm glad I'm not the only one!

Cheers - N


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  Reply # 1219240 21-Jan-2015 15:45
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We switched from a Volvo V70 XC to a Nissan Presage. I still miss the Volvo to this day. The Volvo had pretty good leg room and space in the back seat and would be ok for two rear facing child seats, but little else.

Built like a tank and with leather seats and great styling/features within. Ours had only gotten over 100km but had started to develop a few grumbles in the autotrans. It was still under full mechanical warranty but there are a number of horror stories of Volvos needing full trans replacements.

The presage is a low-class affair but there is much roomier internally. There is a 3.5L model with 4WD which I would have loved to get had I known about it when buying. The Presage drives like a car, but nowhere as smooth as the Volvo. Still don't feel any regrets as the Presage is far more practical.

Presage has sliding side doors with one automatic, one manual. These are excellent for kids. The Volvo was a very wide car and there always problems with parking/getting out of the car in narrow spaces.

Good luck.


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  Reply # 1219308 21-Jan-2015 16:46
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Disrespective: Sort of related, but sort of not. What sort of profit will car yards try and make from a trade in? I know this isn't an exact science, but lets say market value on a car is 30k, how low will I have to go on a car on the lot? 25k? They're still making money from that as they bought it for less than 25, and then they'll make more from the fact the trade is worth more... methinks there are dark forces at work here...


Depends what your buying (easy to sell hard to sell car), what their current stock is, cash/finance/trade-in ratio. All sorts of factors.

Just for an example though, if I walked onto a yard tomorrow with my pristine tuned 2004 Legacy Gt-B with 90,000kms and wanted to trade it for a newer 2008 legacy GT with 130,000 kms @ $18,000 (higher kms and way less power). They would give me $8000-9000 trade-in.

They would then sell my 2004 legacy for around $12,995.

Its not fair really, but at least its certain money and you get the car you want without waiting.

Doesnt mean you can ask for deal, remember if they offer minimum trade ins they will build that into the pricing, so for a tidy more sellable car you can negotiate with them.

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  Reply # 1219313 21-Jan-2015 16:50
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Talkiet:
joker97: i have a 2012 legacy with 300hp and does 800ks a tank (65L). don't know how it does it. don't want to know what happens after 100,000ks either. but it feels like a tin can compared to a VW Polo Cross.


That's REALLY interesting. I had a 2004 GTB wagon that did a similar unbelievable range given the type of car and power. I remember driving from Rolleston to Dunedin AND BACK on one tank of gas (720km!) and didn't fill it up compeltely on my return. The low fuel light had come on though.

I had questioned my sanity many times in reviewing the economy of a very fast turbo wagon but I'm glad I'm not the only one!

Cheers - N



Ditto here, ours has been remapped at PBMS + Subtech front pipe. Best economy so far is 7.9L per 100 kms, and its putting down 242HP at all 4 wheels. 60L tank equates to 759 kms. Coming up to 90,000 kms, intend to do the cambelt for $1000 and keep going....considering the $18k+ price tag to get into a newer higher km model with less power.

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  Reply # 1219494 21-Jan-2015 21:37
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I've had a 2005 Subaru Outback 3.0 for 8 years now and still love how it drives. Plenty of pick up on the open road, good sized boot and quite slim so easy to park. Although as the kids get bigger I'm looking to upgrading to a Toyota Highlander for a bit more space.




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