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Outback utes - the pick of the crop

By John Bryant


Ford's AUII - Ford has listened to Aussie ute drivers and given them what they want.

I've listened to numerous debates about which is the best ute. There are the Ford versus Holden debates, Aussie versus Jap, petrol versus diesel, 2WD versus 4WD, and then there's a whole range of technical issues about payload, braking, safety, comfort, engine performance, styling, image, and so on.

Trouble is, there are a lot of good utes available in Australia and there aren't any obvious lemons (touch wood).

The factor that's often overlooked is that the best ute for one person won't suit the next. As the ute market grows there are niches developing within niches. The new Australian ute manufacturers are targeting recreational ute owners like never before, where styling and image are paramount.

Then there's the trades person who needs operational efficiency and economy who is attracted by anything that makes his job easier. The farming community has a different set of needs.

There's even the corporate executive who is being prised out of his Magna sedan into a dual cab for tax reasons. And there's also that growing band of city folk who have a hankering to get back to basics who are starting to turn to a ute as a second car, and using it to get away at weekends.

Add the baby boomers who see a ute as a means of travelling Australia in retirement, and we've got one very large mixed bag of ute aspirants.

We've had a look at what's available in the marketplace, and summarised some of the key aspects. However, the bottom line for every prospective ute purchaser is the same as for any other key spend: check the market thoroughly and determine what works best for YOU. Story end

Full story: Issue 18, August/ September 2001

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