Sunday, September 26, 2010

Luxury Truck vs Mid Range Car

Ok, enough with the stinking Malaysian politics for now and onto more interesting stuff - cars and trucks.

If you had a choice between a luxury truck and a mid-range car, which would you choose? Truck, yes? Why? Because of luxury? Well, many people would, albeit not most.

You see, for about the price you pay for a mid-range car like a Kia Forte 2.0SX or a Toyota Altis, you can get the kind of luxury you associate with high-end cars like Mazda 6, BMW 5 series and even the VW Passat CC provided you're willing to settle for a luxury truck.

The one I'm referring to in particular is the Nissan Navara. For a truck, the Navara is extremely plush - full leather seats, car-like cabin layout and dashboard, great stereo, the works. For a "commercial vehicle", this is one truck people would buy if they want a luxury car but can't quite afford one.

Although it's a truck, its ride handling feels less like a truck than a car on the road. And its advance chassis and suspension system allows you to go off-roading with confidence.

What's more, for a truck, the Navara can pretty much outrun most cars on the road. That's because it comes with a 2.5L Turbo diesel engine that dishes out 171 BHp, which is far more than what its closest rivals of the same engine capacity can, i.e. Mitsubishi Triton, Toyota Hilux and Ford - YUCK! - Ranger. (Sorry, I have to say YUCK each time I mention Ford - YUCK! - because of the bad experience I've had owning a Ford - YUCK! - Focus).

The Navara looks distinguished too, not least because of its humongous size. When you drive this big thing, you can bet others will be wary of crowding your right of way.

At the same time, the fact that it's a truck means that you're going to have to settle for some trade-offs. For one thing, although it's fast, you can't expect it to attack corners like a car - unless you have a death wish. For another, you're going to have to be very careful when parking in building basements, especially small and tight ones, lest you leave paint marks on walls and dents and scratches all over your Navara.

Me? Although I can't help but admire the Navara for its looks, luxury feel and engine power, I'd still settle for a mid-range car. Let's just say, I still prefer the feel and looks of a car (my Kia Forte in particular) over a beautiful truck like the Navara.

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