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MINI Countryman hybrid or Toyota RAV4?


I love MINIs and I wanted to trade my 2019 T-Roc 1.5 for a Countryman SE All4, the new facelifted one and the reason is I want to get better fuel economy and the joy of driving. But then my wife suggested I look at the Toyota RAV4 hybrid, which is much more practical, especially as we have an 18-month-old girl and soon another boy coming on the 20th of November. So, can you compare the RAV4 to the Countryman: which will be the best on fuel consumption? My average T-Roc consumption is 7.1 litres/100km.

Thank you so much.

Filed under choosing new car - Asked by Chee Yin Ng (Dublin) - Thu, 20 Aug 2020 00:08

Looking for a car to cover all bases...

We are a senior couple living in a long country lane in Ireland. We drive four long journeys per year. Our nearest large town is 15km away. We would like a car that is comfortable, good on long journeys and short journeys, low on fuel costs, tax and maintenance. And fit at least three grandchildren for school runs.

Filed under choosing new car - Asked by Marietta O Dowd (Cavan) - Mon, 27 Jul 2020 11:10

Is the DS brand on sale in Ireland?


Just wondering is the DS brand no longer on sale in Ireland now? No website and doesn't seem to be any sales for the brand on official motor stats.



Filed under choosing new car - Asked by Mark Donnelly (Portlaoise) - Wed, 29 Jul 2020 16:37

VW T-Cross, Skoda Kamiq or Suzuki Vitara?

Looking at VW T-Cross, Skoda Kamiq or Suzuki Vitara... which would you recommend?

Filed under choosing new car - Asked by Mary Bane (Ennis) - Thu, 25 Jun 2020 22:53

Which big tow car to go for on moving?

We are moving from the UK to Ireland soon and are gobsmacked (for the want of of a better word) to find that our two trusty vehicles, the 2005 Chrysler Grand Voyager (diesel) and 2005 Mercdes C-Class Elegance (petrol) are going to cost in excess of €6,000 jointly to tax! The cars are not even worth a fraction of that, so we sadly have to replace them (in this throw-away world we have always been proud to keep our vehicles beyond their life expectancies).

So, what car can you recommend for a family of six, that would be able to tow a horse box, but would be the cheapest to tax as we relocate to the Emerald Isle?

Jo Sheedy

Surrey, UK

Filed under choosing new car - Asked by Joanna Sheedy (Epsom) - Wed, 10 Jun 2020 12:50

New Honda Civic or VW Golf?


I'm currently looking at 1.5 petrol Honda Civic or 1.5 Volkswagen Golf. Which would be the better choice? Doing mostly motorway miles, 15,000 per year. Also which one would have more room in the back for two kids?


Filed under choosing new car - Asked by Gavin Moran (Dublin ) - Tue, 02 Jun 2020 20:19

What to replace by Octavia RS TDI with?

Hi, I'm doing approx. 30,000km per year. I have a 2016 Octavia RS 2.0-litre TDI 184hp at the moment and am going to change over the next few months - pandemic allowing etc! What would you recommend? Are hybrids worth looking at for example?

Filed under choosing new car - Asked by Mark McNally (Galway) - Mon, 18 May 2020 19:12

Is the Volkswagen Up suitable for me?

Hi there,

I'm looking to buy a newer car than my 2007 1.2 Renault Clio. I spend roughly half the week in a small city and the other half in a small country village, about 25 minutes from the nearest town. I do a short motorway trip about twice a week. I'd love something like a Volkswagen Up, but am worried this would be too small and lack enough power for my amount of driving, which is roughly 21,000km per year.

What would you advise?

Many thanks, Eimear.

Filed under choosing new car - Asked by Eimear Molloy (Kilkenny/Waterford) - Mon, 18 May 2020 20:46

Thoughts on the Subaru XV 1.6 CVT?

Hi, your good work is much appreciated.

Every so often I take it into my mind to change what is by now a seven-year-old car. And when I do, a lot of questions come to mind and so my recent questions are on long term costs of hybrids (which seem to be taking over the market) and on the Hyundai Santa Fe. The latter I wouldn't really have considered, except I was in a dealership and was very taken by it. But on mature reflection, the cost of changing simply can't be justified.

Recently I came across material on the Subaru XV 1.6, which hadn't been on my radar, but which seems on paper to have a lot going for it. But I'm rather concerned about the CVT gearbox. There's an American mechanic on YouTube, who seems very experienced, who argues that this technology has yet to prove its long term reliability and that, after 60,000 miles, they can give rise to problems. Even Toyota, with its claim to excellence, has recently done a recall in the States to replace the transmission. Secondly, also there are conflicting views on whether the engine might be described as gutless. Anyway, that's where my researches have got me and I would very much welcome your views.

Thanks in advance


Filed under choosing new car - Asked by Philip Donegan (Ballina) - Sat, 16 Mar 2019 12:36

Ford Galaxy or Hyundai Santa Fe?

Ford Galaxy or Hyundai Santa Fe? I have not been able to do test drives yet, but would appreciate your view as well. I need something to drive in the city as well as for family trips (kids are 4, 10, 12 and 14). I know kids would be happiest with a V-Class, but I need something for daily commute as well. Am trying to find the right type of car. SUVs are not large enough, MPVs seem a bit big and not as fun to drive (or perhaps not), while vans are only suitable for longer trips, I think.

Thank you.

Filed under choosing new car - Asked by Emir Cehajic (Sarajevo) - Sun, 03 May 2020 00:08

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