406,A4,golf whatelse?
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  1. #1
    1000+ Posts purrr-geot's Avatar
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    406,A4,golf whatelse?

    Ok guys need some advice.
    This week my dad was unfortunetly involved in an accident due to one hoon in his new xr-6 ute moon moon .

    My dad wasnt seriously injured thank god, however our n14 Nissan Pulsar was a write-off,much to the delight of my father & i eheheh . So looks like we will get a little check of approx 10000-12000 from the stingy insurance man 2_cents deal .

    Now the fun part we want to get something alot better than a Pulsar and have a budget of approx $22,000.

    We are looking for a car family/medium size, must be a auto, prefrebly a european car, reasonably safe and not too costly to maintain spanner .

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    At present we are considering
    Peugeot 406
    Audi A4
    Volkswagen Golf
    peugeot 206 (maybe)
    lexus es300

    Could anyone add to this list and give us any honest responses about any of the cars listed above.

    Any advice or comments would be much appreciated.

    Thanks in advance
    Asanka cheers!

    <small>[ 18 October 2003, 09:29 AM: Message edited by: purrr-geot ]</small>

  2. #2
    Moderator Alan S's Avatar
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    Can't believe how many Peugeot guys never seem to put Cits into any prospective purchases...it leaves me cold. Usually it's because of the "funny suspension" which is possibly 10 times simpler and more effective than the Pug system.
    Do yourself a favour and forget all bigotries about hydraulics and mythical folklore on reliability and take a trip into the Trading Post & look at the variety of Xantias for sale in that price range; wagons, turbo diesels, V6, 2 litre, 16 valves, the range is enormous and beuing in Melbourne, you've got good genuine service specialists down there, some even aussiefrogs members.
    My bet is, sit his bott intoa Xantia & he'll never want to get out.
    A bit like quite a few of the anti-BX set who now own them & wouldn't swap them for anything.

    Alan S
    If it ain't broke, use a 12" shifter.....that usually does the trick!!

  3. #3
    Sense Pug307's Avatar
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    Hope everyone's ok.

    I have to say, that's a really interesting mix of cars.

    Personally, I'd strike the 206 off straight away if you're after a family car. Then again, we'd probably find a Pulsar too small - but a 206 really is a bit too small. For 22k, you might just be able to get a 1.4 manual XR on the road.

    A teeny weeny 206 for the family when you could have something more substantial - and there certainly are cars listed there, which certainly would be?

    Xantias don't have the best front seats I'd have to say. The shaping isn't great, but then again I'd consider myself a seat snob Just like you Citrophiles are suspension snobs

    Peugeot 307 XS 1.6
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  4. #4
    Fellow Frogger! MR206's Avatar
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    how bout a citroen_ Xsara??
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  5. #5
    1000+ Posts zykyra's Avatar
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    Here, here, a series 2 citroen_ Xsara would be a good proposition, however a peugeot_ 406 or citroen_ Xantia would be a good bet as well. You could get a very nice last model peugeot_ 306 too. Good luck! wink cheers!
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  6. #6
    nJm
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    My parents were looking at similar cars a while ago (we decided to stick with our Magna for a bit longer though).

    Our concerns with the base model Audi A4 and VW Passat was that they are a large car with only a 1.8L engine. We never ended up driving a 406 2L auto, but from all reports they are v e r y slow. Still, best to go drive one to see what you think.

    We were very impressed with the Volvo 850/S70. They had the best seats by far, roomier interior, far more power (torquey 5 cylinder engine) and cheaper service costs. Still, they aren't exactly pretty nor the best driver's cars. Handling is fine for a large FWD car (has similar rear steering thingo as the 406) however the steering is devoid of feel and is too light.

    Having been in a 206 for a few hours on a non-stop trip I can say that it definately isn't a family car! Seats are really hard and the driving position gives you sore ankles from twisting your feet to get to the pedals. Also suspension was really firm and it lacked dampning.

    A Xsara might be a good one to look at, is basically a 306, and you know all about them

    As for the Xantia, they are certainly a bargain (I've seen them sell for $12k with less than 100,000kms on them). I guess I was put off a little by all the various reports on the general build quality, or lack there of.

    Anyway, take them for test drives and do a little reading around on the 'net. Also speak to service departments. I spoke to a guy at Masons Prestige (Volvo dealer down on the peninsular) and he gave me a price list of parts and scheduled servicing, and advice on what to look for when buying a car!

    Oh, and stick away from Citroen Brighton. They wouldn't let dad test drive a 4 year old 406 unless he was prepared to buy it today...
    Nick
    1983 Peugeot 505 GR


    "All of its cars from the 1.1 litre 205 through the ugly duckling 309 to the 2.2 litre 505 GTi had a rightness and a righteousness about them that turned every humdrum drive into a journey. Someone, I once wrote, in the bowels of Peugeot understands handling and how a chassis should feel." - Jeremy Clarkson

  7. #7
    1000+ Posts CHRI'S16's Avatar
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    Asanka, ill get shot for saying this but get the Lexus. Simply extremely reliable, ride, comfort, exquipment and overall car is better than any of the ones you listed.
    My heart says the 406, but really, while the ES300 is a little boring, i think your pearents will learn to appreciate the long term quality the lexus offers.
    At work i see many old, new high and low Kilometer Lexus cars, and they hold up better than most.
    As an altenative, 2nd hand VW BORA is good but a little out of your price.
    Also the Nissan MAXIMA are very underated. Also the V6 Verada... - chris
    ... ptui!

  8. #8
    Sense Pug307's Avatar
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    nJm:
    We were very impressed with the Volvo 850/S70...however the steering is devoid of feel and is too light.
    Eh, you said this before in <a href="http://www.aussiefrogs.com/cgi-bin/ultimatebb.cgi?ubb=get_topic;f=3;t=001263;p=2" target="_blank">another thread</a>:

    Steering was really nicely weighted

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  9. #9
    Sense Pug307's Avatar
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    Out of the cars on your list, I'd only keep three of them.

    Peugeot 406
    Lexus ES300
    Audi A4 (are you sure you can get an A4 for 22k?)

    The 206 and Golf are too small. The Golf is assembled together nicely, the 206 is just screwed together. You can get more car for the money, especially if you're after a family car.

    Here are a few of my comments.

    Audi A4 - a smart compact exec. I have my reservations about maintenance costs.

    Peugeot 406 - we had a few great discussions <a href="http://www.aussiefrogs.com/cgi-bin/ultimatebb.cgi?ubb=get_topic;f=3;t=001237" target="_blank">here</a>. There's a litany of discussions dispersed through the AF archives - do a search. You should be able to find some reasonable D8 STs around 22k.

    VW Golf - a dynamic dunce. 1.6 auto is a slug, more so than the equivalent 307 Nicely built, nice touches but IMHO too small for a family car. Having said that, it shouldn't be too bad if you are used to a Pulsar. IMHO, you should remove the Golf from your shortlist and replace it with the Passat. It's a nice quiet family car, if a little short of headroom in the rear.

    VW Bora - too small. A Golf with a boot.

    Mitsubishi Verada - beautiful engine, I love the 3.5 V6. Sounds nice and goes well. Nicely hushed and thanks to famous Magna/Verada depreciation, great value as a used buy. I've found the brakes to be wanting and it's not a particularly dynamic drive. Quite light steering. I felt rather detached from everything whilst driving it.

    Citroen Xantia - after the BX, it's really not that weird. Thanks to famous Citroen depreciation, there is value there.

    Lexus ES300 - I haven't driven one, but they seem to be fine.

    Nissan Maxima - I'd agree, the current model is underrated. A neighbour has an E-Class overseas and a Maxima here and is still very happy with the Maxima. Nicely hushed and I'm fond of its engine. Like the Verada, it's an example of the tradeoff you make - sure it won't handle with the same aplomb as the 306, but it's reasonably swift and refined.

    Volvo 850/S70 - Speaking from personal experience here. If exhaust note is important, this is the one to get The 20V five cylinder probably has the raspiest sportiest exhaust note of all those mentioned above Engine sounds great when given the boot. 20V much better than the 10V - sounds and goes much better. It's a good dependable family car. Yes they're boxy, but what did they say in the film Crazy People - "They're boxy, but they're good"

    Citroen Xsara - being the owner of a 306, this shouldn't be too drastic a change. Personally, it's too small to be the primary family car. I can't warm to the weird face, but maybe you can

    Would you like another 306, you'd be able to pick up N5s in your price range. Personally a little small for a main family car though - the 307 is roomier. However as an auto, realistically speaking the 2.0 is the model to go for which would be beyond $22k.

    Most of the cars above won't be as fun to drive as a 306, but they should be fine after a Pulsar. At the end of the day, your priorities are probably different in a family car anyway.

    Have fun shopping for cars, it's an experience I enjoy. Ultimately how you perceive the cars is what's most important.

    Peugeot 307 XS 1.6
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  10. #10
    nJm
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    Pug307:
    nJm:
    We were very impressed with the Volvo 850/S70...however the steering is devoid of feel and is too light.
    Eh, you said this before in <a href="http://www.aussiefrogs.com/cgi-bin/ultimatebb.cgi?ubb=get_topic;f=3;t=001263;p=2" target="_blank">another thread</a>:

    Steering was really nicely weighted
    Ah yes, but that was a V70, and its' steering was significantly better than the 850 and S70 I've driven .
    Nick
    1983 Peugeot 505 GR


    "All of its cars from the 1.1 litre 205 through the ugly duckling 309 to the 2.2 litre 505 GTi had a rightness and a righteousness about them that turned every humdrum drive into a journey. Someone, I once wrote, in the bowels of Peugeot understands handling and how a chassis should feel." - Jeremy Clarkson

  11. #11
    1000+ Posts CHRI'S16's Avatar
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    Asanka, i wasn't going to say this, but have you considered a Vectra, i now it says "holden", but these cars are very lievable and can be serviced just about anywere any holden can... just a thought. - chris

    ps Only bother with the 4cylinder, the V6 was quite a let down.
    ... ptui!

  12. #12
    Sense Pug307's Avatar
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    nJm:
    Ah yes, but that was a V70, and its' steering was significantly better than the 850 and S70 I've driven .
    Bleh, it's basically just an S70 wagon Same underpinnings underneath.

    But, I can't work out why the steering felt so different, they must have changed something related to the steering in 99.

    In regards to the just superceded Vectra, one thing you'll probably find familiar is the steering weighting - even heavier than the 306. I don't find it that roomy a car though (up front it feels squeezier than the 307, especially in the passenger footwell) and the build isn't particularly amazing either. The car with the 2.0 16V moves along well enough, but it's no rocket. It does the job, but I just find it doesn't really have anything particularly noteworthy about it. Unless you consider the fact it displays ambient temperatures to 0.5įC important

    I find it a little dull I guess, but then again you could always get a Camry and redefine dullness once again!

    Peugeot 307 XS 1.6
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  13. #13
    Fellow Frogger! RXE 2.0's Avatar
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    Actually if u look under the skin of a Vectra its not a Holden its a Opel and its German Built the Hatchback .I have a Vectar that Im willing to sell a 2000 V6 hatchback CD Olive with Factory Body Kit top of the line. Very fast and lively , Faster then a V6 Laguna. For more info visit <a href="http://www.vectra4sale.cjb.net/" target="_blank">http://www.vectra4sale.cjb.net/</a>
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  14. #14
    1000+ Posts CHRI'S16's Avatar
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    RXE 2.0:
    Actually if u look under the skin of a Vectra its not a Holden its a Opel and its German Built the Hatchback .
    rxe2.0, not to discredit you but the Opel/Vaxhaull bit we all knew already. Hence holden was in quote marks.
    Good luck with selling it. How is the V6 on fuel? - chris
    ... ptui!

  15. #15
    Fellow Frogger! RXE 2.0's Avatar
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    Thanks Chris
    Its actually not bad depending on how you drive it about 12.5Lís per 100kms on average.
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  16. #16
    Fellow Frogger! Jez 405's Avatar
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    If you're considering an Audi A4, then why not a VW Passat? Bigger, roomier and cheaper than an equivalent A4. I think they all have 5sp auto's as well.
    However, for the enthusiast, a 406 would be much more appealing. The 2nd hand prices for those things are very reasonable.

    I don't recommend the Lexus ES300. If you're considering one, save your money and get a Camry-Vienta or Avalon Grande.
    1987 Peugeot 205 GTI S1
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  17. #17
    1000+ Posts purrr-geot's Avatar
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    WOW!thanks for all your responses,

    The 206 was put on the list simply because i wanted you to tell me how bad it was justin!! I'm not a big fan of the 206 myself. I'd buy another 306 ahead of a 206 anyday.

    I'd love to get behind the wheel of a xsara, however dads a bit iffy on the sitreonz. Dont worry Alan S i am educating him on the "funny suspension", plus it will be like having another 306 without pug badges on it!YAY! approve .

    Any decent renaults in the 22k range?

    My dad & i face a bit of a moral dillemma, the 406 would be our first choice, but primarily due to our family's long love affair with pugs having owned numerous 504's,505's & now me with a 306.

    I've been doing a bit of research on the 406 & must say i get the impression that it is like previous family size pugs in regards to high maintainence costs, would this be a fair assumption???How do you think a 406 would hold up after 150,000k's??

    All you swede car freaks let your hair down and tell me what do you think about the Volvo S40???

    We know someone willing to sell it for $23,000. Personally im not a huge fan of volvo's, purely due to the "bloody volvo driver" factor! I know for a fact though they are great vehicles, but how good are they?

    I've cut the list to the following, however am willing to consider others.

    406
    A4
    ES300
    S40

    keep your comments coming, thanks

    regards
    asanka cheers!

    <small>[ 19 October 2003, 11:13 AM: Message edited by: purrr-geot ]</small>

  18. #18
    Sense Pug307's Avatar
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    purrr-geot:
    Personally im not a huge fan of volvo's, purely due to the "bloody volvo driver" factor!
    I have some "You wish you were a bloody Volvo Driver" stickers at home if you want

    What year is the S40?

    I saw a T4 for $24k in The Age yesterday. They're damn quick, faster than a Clio Sport.

    S40s became a lot better after the Phase II launch. The 97 & early 98 cars weren't that amazing (although Wheels somehow placed it second just after the 406 in a 4 car comparison). I thought they were unrefined, both in ride & NVH terms. The Phase II update transformed the car - much better - updated suspension, cosmetic surgery, 5 speed auto, updated engines, etc. To be honest, the S40 probably wasn't Volvo's finest hour wink

    The car is based on the Mitsubishi Carisma chassis, built in Born in the Netherlands. In Australia, there was the 2.0 16V, 1.8 16V, 2.0T (low blow turbo) and T4 (high po turbo). Most cars are the 2.0 engine, which has 103kW (100kW after the Phase II update with VVT). The 1.8 S40 is no rocket with the auto (90kW) and the engine is damn boring to listen to. T4 is damn fast.

    The new Focus based S40 should be great, reports from Sweden are encouraging, road reports should arrive next week.

    I find the car is a bit small, but I'm used to an S70, or the 307 which probably has enough headroom for you to wear a Mexican hat on whilst driving (hey, I did learn to drive in a Volvo )

    Audio isn't very good by Volvo standards, sounds flat & empty. I'll blame the Philips speakers on that and the less solid doors (S40 doors are quite light feeling - doesn't feel like a real Volvo). Still the car has performed well for safety, it was the first car to receive a 4 star rating in EuroNCAP.

    I guess they don't quite feel like real Volvos. But there don't appear to be any reliability issues with them.

    Try it - try the cars on your shortlist.

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  19. #19
    nJm
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    If you can stretch to about $26k you can pick up a Peugeot 406 SV. Very nice engine, but I have no idea what they are like in terms of reliability. If you sift through the Peugeot website you can find the list prices for servicing. What I noticed was that cam belt changes are every 80,000km and quite expensive. That was one of the things that had us leaning towards a Volvo 5 cylinder - cam belts every 120,000km and services every 15,000km.

    If you go on Carsurvey.org you will find many people who have had problems with 406s, but you have to wonder if it is only people with problems who bother to get on the internet and tell people about it.
    Nick
    1983 Peugeot 505 GR


    "All of its cars from the 1.1 litre 205 through the ugly duckling 309 to the 2.2 litre 505 GTi had a rightness and a righteousness about them that turned every humdrum drive into a journey. Someone, I once wrote, in the bowels of Peugeot understands handling and how a chassis should feel." - Jeremy Clarkson

  20. #20
    1000+ Posts purrr-geot's Avatar
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    The S40 is a 98 model, so i'd imagine it's the poorer model. If its only 90kw (auto) and meant to be a family vehicle i'd stay right away.Hmmm that t4 you mention sounds interesting though???

    C'mon 406 sedan owners, where are you all??? Let me know how your car goes. :p

  21. #21
    1000+ Posts purrr-geot's Avatar
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    Could someone tell me the various models of the 406 range, d8,d9,sv ect.
    thanks

    D8 - 10,000km service intervals

    5 basic services $205
    1 major service $585
    = $1610.00

    D9 - 20,000km service intervals with 10,000 intermediate checks

    3 Intermediate Checks - $11 (seems the standard at Regans)
    2 Minor Service - $305 (I paid $340 - so I suspect in real life, add 10% to book prices)
    1 Major Service - $665
    = $1308.00 (~$1440.00 using real world pricing in my experience)
    I got this from nicks thread regarding service costs for the 406.....hmmm interesting uh. Why arent pugs cheap to maintain errrrrr .

    The cost of the cam belt is a bit too much aswell, that said if we were to buy a 406 for 22k it would have done over 80,000ks & we would only purchase it if it did have the cambelt changed.

    Surely there must be somemore positives to the 406 other than it's handling & looks!!

  22. #22
    nJm
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    It has comfy seats wink

    The D8 ran from late 1996-early/mid 1999. It does look older.

    The D9 is what is still on sale. It had many updates to the engines (hence larger service intervals), interior, safety equipment and more. It is a much better car from what I've read and you get more features on the base model too. If I was getting a 406 I'd hang out for a D9 to appear in my price range.

    I don't know why pugs are expensive. I know a basic service for my car costs just below $100 if I don't do it my self, but then again it is rather basic compared to a 406

    I've never driven a Volvo S40, but my impressions on sitting in them was they were definately cheaper feeling than the bigger Volvos, and had hardly any leg room. That said, there are a lot of them around so they can't be that bad. I've seen both Australian and British reviews placing it just behind the 406.

    I absolutely love my french cars, but I would think twice before recommending older ones to family if all they want is a trouble free car.

    That said, the D9 406 is really great and I think they had sorted out most problems by then.
    Nick
    1983 Peugeot 505 GR


    "All of its cars from the 1.1 litre 205 through the ugly duckling 309 to the 2.2 litre 505 GTi had a rightness and a righteousness about them that turned every humdrum drive into a journey. Someone, I once wrote, in the bowels of Peugeot understands handling and how a chassis should feel." - Jeremy Clarkson

  23. #23
    Moderator Alan S's Avatar
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    If they are all that concerned about running costs, they should be looking carefully at who they get to do their srvices.
    Some of the prices quoted sound to me like something from a main dealer who live in this fantasy world that only the parts they sell are any good; which is why they're three times the price of everyone elses, that their apprentices are so clever that it's OK to pay $100 an hour for their work, and based on fear & ignorance, it really does take 2 1/2 hours to change the engine oil and half an hour each to test the tyre pressures or simialr fairy stories deal
    On a board I spend a bit of time on overseas, we just had a guy ask about a cambelt on one of these. He's been quoted =A$1200 but after being referred to another repairer, the price came out at about =A$330
    Don't be conned into believing that thes upmarket rice cookers are any stroll in the park when it comes to either guaranteed reliability or service/parts costs and unfortunately, Swedens answer to the Valiant would possibly leave you with less options for service than any froggy car would. and let's face it, their reputation for parts prices isn't exactly brilliant and after all, you can check the track record of most frog repairers through this board; don't know how much info you'll get from aussievlovs roll_lau
    As far as older cars goes, if properly and honestly maintained I fail to see the argument about reliability vs age based on my own experience and from reports of others. My CX is a '79 model and in 30,000 klms wouldn't have cost me $500 in repairs. Check out Shane and Ray Bell's cars for big miles for little cost.
    Of course if repair costs are going to be the main consideration, you go Hyundies Snotaria with the 5 year warranty and dice it in 2008, although even that option becomes a major cost again due to being forced to follow the service scam to get the warranty, so what do you achieve?
    My idea of buying a car is to go & look at them all, drive & inspect and doubtless one will "grab" you and at the end of the day. Check with other owners (not friends of) as to the service costs and who you should use & who not, and unless you've gone in loaded up with myths & fairy stories and bought on emotion rather than on condition and gut feeling, you've got to be real unlucky for car "A" to be more costly than car "B" to maintain unless you're being cleaned up by a dealer more interested in his bank balance than your car. mallet

    Alan S cheers!
    If it ain't broke, use a 12" shifter.....that usually does the trick!!

  24. #24
    UFO
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    CHRI'S16:
    RXE 2.0:
    Actually if u look under the skin of a Vectra its not a Holden its a Opel and its German Built the Hatchback .
    rxe2.0, not to discredit you but the Opel/Vaxhaull bit we all knew already. Hence holden was in quote marks.
    Good luck with selling it. How is the V6 on fuel? - chris
    Well ACTUALLY, the engine in the 2l Vectra is Aussie made! About 300 000 engines are made in Melbglum every year and sent to Europe. Unfortunately some of them come back dead roll_lau
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  25. #25
    pur-john, not pew-john! peujohn's Avatar
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    I saw a T4 for $24k in The Age yesterday. They're damn quick, faster than a Clio Sport.
    I seem to remember that these T4s were criticised by the motoring press for bad torque steer and a below-par chassis. However Justin, I will happily stand corrected if that's not correct. I just can't let you have it all your own way... wink

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