The Road Ahead : August 1st 2012
QUEENSLAND'S LARGEST CLUB 61 AUG/SEP 2012 THE ROAD AHEAD SUZUKI'S TINY ALTO city car is the cheapest vehicle to own and operate in Queensland, costing $116.70 per week, or $6068.29 a year. The Toyota LandCruiser GXL turbo-diesel is the most expensive, with owners forking out $398.16 per week, or $20,704.29 annually. That's a whopping difference of more than $14,000, accordingly to RACQ's latest Vehicle Running Costs survey. Every year, the survey names the cheapest and most expensive cars to own and operate in Queensland, to help motorists get more 'bang' for their motoring buck. The 2012 survey compared the private operating costs of 101 cars from different classes and with different engine types, including LPG, petrol, diesel, hybrid and, for the first time, electric. "While it may be impractical for motorists who own a LandCruiser to downsize to a small car like the Alto, it is worth noting that the Suzuki owner can operate their car for more than three weeks for the same amount the Toyota owner spends in one week," RACQ's resident car expert Steve Spalding said. "Interestingly, while the Alto's overall running costs dropped by $2.77 per week compared with last year, the LandCruiser weekly costs rose by $9.44 per week," he said. "The message is simple: Downsize and save." The survey also found that Queensland families could save around $32 per week, or $1707.92 a year, by purchasing a medium size car instead of a large car. And downsizing from an all-terrain four-wheel-drive to a compact SUV could save you $111.67 per week, or $5807 every year. "High fuel prices are forcing many owners away from large vehicles into medium or smaller cars to save money. But Ford's four-cylinder turbo petrol 2.0 litre Falcon EcoBoost and the 4.0 litre LPG Falcon could help those looking to buck that trend," Mr Spalding said. "The EcoBoost has all the features and performance of a large car, but it will cost motorists $240.25 a week, compared with the Ford Falcon 4.0 litre petrol at $253.26 per week. That's a saving of almost $700 a year. "Meanwhile, Ford's 4.0 litre LPI Falcon, which runs on LPG, will cost motorists $232.42 a week, which is $400 a year cheaper than the EcoBoost and $1100 a year less than the petrol 4.0-litre Falcon," he said. The cheapest hybrid to own and operate is the Toyota Prius-C Hybrid, with an annual running cost of $8309.32. But the only electric vehicle on the local market, the Mitsubishi iMiEV, fared the worst of the 'green' vehicles because of its expensive $48,000 price tag, and correspondingly high depreciation costs. The survey found depreciation remained the single biggest cost component across all categories. However, the impact wasn't felt on a weekly or annual basis, but at the end of the ownership period. Fuel pricing, stamp duty, registration fees, insurance and interest rates were also factored into the survey. A summary is available at www.racq.com.au/runningcosts. alto cheapest to own, run RACQ's latest Vehicle Running Costs survey reveals how you could save thousands of dollars. STORY BRODIE BOTT MAIN IMAGE: SUZUKI ALTO. MITSUBISHI IMIEV. FORD FALCON LPI. SOURCE: AUTONEWS.
June July 2012