A Top Gear PH reader asks: Veloster, 86 or a more practical car?

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by Botchi Santos | Jan 6, 2013

Hi, Botchi! Good day. Hope this mail finds you well.

 I am looking for a new car and would really appreciate your advice. This is my first time to select and decide on a new car since the current one I\'m using was given to me with the very simple goal of getting from Point A to B. I am in my mid-twenties and would most likely use my car for city driving with the occasional out-of-town trips. I also want a fun car to drive.

 My two ideal cars are the Hyundai Veloster and the Toyota 86, though both cars seem to be elusive.

 When the Veloster was introduced, I was seriously planning to purchase one as it fits most of the things that I am looking for (more details in a bit), and it has a quirky three-door design. However, I learned from TG and friends that Hyundai PH will not be selling it here locally because of gas -compatibility issues.

 The next car that grabbed my interest, as in everyone\'s case, is the Toyota 86. I really like this car even with a price tag of P1.6 million. The catch is that it\'s already sold-out; my parents are not too keen on it considering its very limited backseat space; and I don\'t think the 86\'s benefits will be maximized. I am not active with racing or drifting. Surely, I will be looking enviously whenever I see other folks driving this car.

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 Anyhow, back to reality. These are the things that I consider and my preferences in choosing a new one. I appreciate your patience if the list seems to be varied or conflicting.

* Automatic transmission

* Budget of up to P1.2 million

* Sedan or hatchback

* Sporty road presence

* Fuel efficiency (although I am not sure if \"sporty-looking\" and \"fuel-efficient\" go hand in hand)

* Good resale value

My choice right now is the Ford Fiesta Sport. I would highly appreciate it if you could suggest other cars, and what you think would be the best choice.

PS: I prefer not to have my full name published. Thank you!

HC

 

Hello, HC! I agree it\'s sad that Hyundai doesn\'t seem to want to sell the Veloster here through official means, even though our roads are slowly getting flooded with gray-market imports from the US and even Korea. I also love the Toyota 86, but it is indeed not as practical as we would like it to be.

Since you\'re already over at Ford, why not check out the all-new Focus? The 2.0 Sport five-door hatchback will be a far better all-around car because of its bigger size, better lending it to out-of-town long drives. I just love the way the new Focus looks, the features it packs as standard, the 2.0-liter engine\'s 168hp and 202Nm of torque, and the six-speed transmission that\'s ideal for spirited mountain-road driving, the odd foray onto the track or just plain cruising.

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Of course, the Fiesta is a great choice as well, but the small size might be a limiting factor for you in terms of versatility of use. The rear trunk space is small, and getting in and out of the rear seats--when you need to bring along passengers--is also a factor for consideration. In this instance, the Honda Jazz will prove to be a better car because it matches the Fiesta\'s driving dynamics, but gives a bigger and more versatile interior room.

Check out the Hyundai Elantra. That\'s an amazing car with amazing looks, providing an equally amazing driving experience matched with great pricing. I prefer this over the 1.8-liter Honda Civic, although I have to admit that the 2.0-liter Civic is still somehow the benchmark in its class of four-door compact sedans when you consider price-versus-performance.

The new Subaru Impreza sedan is damn good but a tad pricey, and for some people, they might not appreciate the Symmetrical AWD. But for me, this is the very best sedan in this segment. I\'d pick the Impreza for sedan or the Focus Sport for hatchback.

Hope this helps. Good luck and have a safe 2013 ahead of you!

Botchi Santos
Consumer Editor

 

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  • Quiz Results

  • TGP Rating
    --/20
    Engine
    --
    Power
    --
    Torque
    --
    Transmission
    --
    Fuel
    --
    1.8 E CVT
    Starts at P1,110,000
    TGP Rating:
    --/20
    Pros
    Light on amenities, Honda kept styling it long after it was done.
    Cons
    Light on amenities, Honda kept styling it long after it was done.
    Verdict
    Honda’s winningest combination comes when you opt for a six-speed manual transmission available in the Civic hatchback Sport, in which …
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  • TGP Rating:
    /20

    Starts at ₱

    TGP Rating:
    /20
    Starts at ₱