This month in Motor, we have the Test Drives of two great new SUV’s, the Audi Q5 and
the Nissan X Trail. Then we also have two test drives of ‘cars’, the Ford Fiesta and Chery
When we buy cars (or SUV’s), emotion often trumps logic. We may love performance, so
practicality may take a back seat. But for many buyers, a car is a rational choice; they buy
what they need to transport themselves and their loved ones as safely, comfortably, and
cheaply as possible. It’s a smarter way to buy, but it isn’t any easier. With hundreds of
new vehicles to choose from, how do you pick the right one?
Start by listing a series of questions, but beware: Once you find the car that answers all
your questions, an emotional connection may well form whether you like it or not!
Forget the number of models available, the number of body styles alone can be
overwhelming: coupes, sedans, station wagons, crossovers, SUVs. How do you decide
what you need? If you want a vehicle that makes a statement about you, coupes and
convertibles are typically the most expressive designs, but restricted access to the back
seat seriously limits their practicality.
If there are kids in the picture or in the near-future plan, four doors are a likely
requirement. Even if children are small enough to ride comfortably in the back seat of a
coupe with any regularity, consider the difficulty of constantly climbing into and out of the
back seat to tend to a child before committing to just two doors!
Then we come to SUVs. Do you need that ground clearance? Yes in some local suburbs,
access roads (to housing estates for instance) are not suited to your lowered sports car.
But keep in mind that the fuel-economy penalty of opting for a taller and heavier vehicle is
something that affects you every time you start the thing.
Of course, the higher seating position of a crossover or SUV is something many people
enjoy, for its increased visibility and for the ease of entry and exit as the seat is at a more
natural height. But most of all many people tend to like the sense of “power” that sitting
above others bring!
Which brings us back to the “emotion” that is attached to your vehicle. Aggression, which
is also an emotion – is what causes so much indiscipline and unruly driving on our roads.