If ASDA were to make a car, this would be it. Looks wise it is not going to win any beauty contests, with its mango like styling it looks chunky, intimidating and brash. It has twin exhausts to add a sporty feel and all the normal body and bumper colour coding that you would expect. Inside there is leather, a sea of grey, bland and cheap plastic, but is solid enough and the controls are sensible and well positioned. Equipment is generous, with climate control, cruise control and electric sunroof to name but a few. It’s safe too, with a 4 star NCAP rating, twinned with alarm and an engine immobiliser it’s not going anywhere. The engine is good, although tough to work hard and sounds like a Stagecoach bus, but is better than a lot of diesels out there. (Fuel gauge is in US gallons, not much good if you live in Leicester.) It has 4WD on demand and will cope with a muddy NCP car park, but when trying to tow anything, its slow, sluggish and sulky, it just does not perform as a 4X4 like the rest of its European rivals. Running costs are average but it will never achieve the 39mpg that Hyundai claim, its is on par with the rest of the competition, 30-35mpg at best, service costs are average and with a 5 year unlimited mileage warranty, your laughing. Depreciation if bought new will be sinister, a used one will hold its value, thanks to that engine, prices start at £17,305 new but I would be tempted by its more attractive, stylish younger sister, the Kia Sportage.
Ryan Grist, Hampshire, May 28th 2008