MOTORING: Five of the best for 2011

By admin
19 December 2011

Car manufacturers surpassed themselves this year – it seems they’re becoming increasingly competitive, with new models just getting better and better. And with such fierce competition it’s nearly impossible to find a dud vehicle these days.

The result has been that manufacturers’ reputations now hinge on their after-sales service and reliability. Of course the prices of new cars are always a consideration, but even within the various price classes consumers are spoilt for choice.

And dealer networks appeared to have cleaned up their acts when it comes to service since the introduction of the Consumer Protection Act which gives car buyers greater peace of mind.

While there are several models that impressed this year, five cars stood head and shoulders above the pack – the Hyundai Elantra, Kia Picanto, Volkswagen Jetta, Ford Focus and Chevrolet Orlando.

Hyundai Elantra

Less than a decade ago South Africans’ sedan of choice was the Toyota Corolla. But no more – there are now several worthy competitors that are also a “safe” buy. The new-generation Elantra falls into this category.

Its elegant design also counts in its favour – there simply isn’t a better-looking car in its class. Then of course there’s the attractive price tag. The Elantra has numerous impressive features that come as standard and it’s sold with Hyundai’s five-year factory guarantee.

Price From R192 900

Kia Picanto

The previous version of the Kia Picanto was often (unfairly) ignored by entry-level buyers but it is in fact a very efficient basic car. With the new-gene­ration Picanto the Korean manufacturer has ensured this is a must-see model – it has a cheeky look and is well-equipped.

If you want to spend less than R120 000 on a car you’ll be doing yourself a disservice if you don’t at least consider the Picanto.

Price From R99 995

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