Making very bad product planning decisions

Posted on December 16th, 2008 in AutoSpeed,Driving Emotion,Ford,Opinion by Julian Edgar

This is the last blog post for this year, and this week’s edition of AutoSpeed is the last until January 6.

It’s been an interesting year, not least because in response to reader requests, we’ve been again testing more new cars.

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again – I think that when testing cars, nearly all journalists are way too soft in their criticisms. I mean, to make just a simple point – by definition, half of all new cars should be rated below average and half should be above average.

But read most car tests and you’ll find that nearly all cars are said to be way above average!

I also think that journalists – and especially enthusiasts’ magazines and TV shows – need to in part be blamed for the absurd direction that some manufacturers have taken with their cars.

The car that this year amazed me the most was the Ford FG Falcon.

The model that I would think sells the best – the XR6 – was incredibly off the pace in the things that matter to most purchasers. All I can say is: what on earth was Ford thinking when they set the priorities?

I wrote about this when the car was first released – see The New Falcon – Mostly Irrelevant and the ironic The Ideal Car for the Times – but the car’s reality was even worse than I’d guessed.


The Falcon review appears in AutoSpeed in the first issue of next year.

Incidentally, lest you think I’d already made up my mind before driving the Falcon (and so a negative test was inevitable), that’s not the case. In fact, our test of the Aurion demonstrates that. I had no great hopes the Aurion would be anything wonderful (and the Camry certainly wasn’t), but as I wrote in the Aurion test: the Aurion is a highly impressive car, well matched to those who want a large car with comfort, performance, a superb ride-and-handling match for real-world Australian conditions, and fuel economy that in its class is excellent.

I don’t think the Aurion is the best car for Australian manufacture, but I still think it’s a very good car.

But to be honest, I could not – and still cannot – believe how bad the FG Falcon is…. and ‘bad’ in the context of what the car is supposed to achieve.

Why on earth did the company spend lots of money on a new front suspension design and steering when out on the road, pushing the car to anywhere near its very high limits is illegal? To put this another way, in virtually all road use, what was wrong with the previous model’s suspension?

That (rumoured) $100 million spent on the new front suspension could have been used to make the air conditioning actually work and improve interior packaging – both would have had far more positive impact on potential purchasers than getting better turn-in at 150 km/h…

And the fuel consumption!

Forget the official government test figures: at a measured 12.5 – 13.5 litres/100km in the city, there appears to be no real-world improvement in a decade. That is simply unforgiveable.

The Falcon angers and frustrates me. The decisions that Ford’s myopic product planners took, in the face of overwhelming worldwide evidence, has cost this country – and Ford – a lot of jobs and money.

With the new (or now just revised old?) upcoming Falcon engines – including perhaps diesel and liquid LPG injection – Ford may be able to regain some of the initiative. But even with improvement in this area, the interior functionality of the Falcon will still remain pedestrian.

I have been asked what car I think Ford should have used as the benchmark when developing the FG. The answer to that is clear: the benchmark could not be any single car, because the Falcon has to be a car unique in the world. It has to sell into a small, geographically defined market where its major buyers are government and fleets, followed only then by family buyers.

The Falcon does not need to have the best fuel economy, or the best interior packaging, or the best high speed stability, or the best NVH, or the best handling, or the best safety, or the best performance. What it needs to be is ‘good’ in as many areas as possible.

Therefore, some examples of benchmark cars that should have been used in the Falcon’s development include cars like the Honda Jazz (for packaging), Mazda 6 (for steering and handling), and any of the similar sized Euro diesels (for fuel economy and performance). And of course, other cars with specific strengths as well.

But, to be more explicit, fuel economy, safety, practicality and packaging – they’re key areas that nearly all buyers will be looking for. Outstanding grip and handling are way down the list for all but a tiny minority of enthusiasts.

Mitsubishi paid for their 380 product planning decision with the loss of manufacturing in Australia.

With the one important exception of crash safety, the FG Falcon is at least as bad a decision.

29 Responses to 'Making very bad product planning decisions'

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  1. David Andrew said,

    on December 16th, 2008 at 9:55 am

    As one who drives Commodores and Falcons (and new Territories) for a living, in conditions that most drivers aren’t subject to, I’ve read pretty much every press/road test on the FG range. Yours seems to be the exception, so I’m wondering if you’re out of step, have unrealisting expectations or I don’t know what else…. It’s taken a long time for the FG to find its way into my employer’s fleet (apparently Ford simply forgot to turn on various fleet options, which has cost them a couple of hundred sales a month!) but we finally have some XTs, a bog standard XR6 like your renter and an XR6 Turbo. My non road testing journo experience in the last couple of months is very different. Compared to the VE Omegas and SS’s and BFIII XTs and XR6T/XR8s I’m used to, the FGs are a brilliant drive. Even at limits that well behaved motorists will not approach. My only complaints, where are the left footrest and overhead console? Standard bluetooth would be nice too.

  2. Julian Edgar said,

    on December 16th, 2008 at 11:20 am

    David, if you drive (and presumably evaulate) the cars in conditions that “most driver’s aren’t subject to”, by definition your conclusions can’t be relevant to most drivers!

    I also find your comparison cars rather amusing – talk about staying in the same gene pool…

    One would think reading your post that the Falcon would be selling up a storm, not selling so poorly that Ford have laid off hundreds of workers.

  3. WVB said,

    on December 16th, 2008 at 12:19 pm

    Julian, your paragraph:-
    “Why on earth did the company spend lots of money on a new front suspension design and steering when out on the road, pushing the car to anywhere near its very high limits is illegal? To put this another way, in virtually all road use, what was wrong with the previous model’s suspension?”
    spoke volumes to me.

    I have, since my apprentice days often wondered how a manufacturer can be successful with a tried & tested design then get it so wrong with a development or new model. They never look at the merits of old? They always set out to break new ground but often only break the bank.
    A couple of examples in my mind were the VN Commodore brakes over the VL’s and the EA falcon front suspension over the out going XF.
    I had a VP commodore with truly woeful brakes but somewhat recall earlier VK/VL systems being better. The XF Falcon had a fine & capable front suspension that was only raised to a higher status by the awful lurching tiller arrangement that was an EA. In the EA’s case I know it was entirely new for ford but as you effectively say, suspension systems (aswell as most other primary vehicle technologies) have been completely sorted so why re-invent them?

    Another springs to mind , the whole Jaguar XJ40 over the S3 XJ6.

    I think I can only rank Porsche as the manufacturer that produces an all new 911 without doing apparently anything……….

  4. Ed Stephens said,

    on December 18th, 2008 at 12:24 pm

    Keep it mind when reading this post, that Julian Edgar is the man that said of the Holden Epica Diesel, “If you’re in the market for a roomy and thrifty family car, take one for a drive.” He appears to be saying that this would be a good option for a family car.

    A car that has been universally shit-canned throughout the Australian motoring press.

    Jesse Taylor, the deputy editor of Wheels Magazine has this to say of the Epica Diesel, “For those who say in 2008 there are no bad cars, I present Exhibit A: the Holden Epica CDTi … The engine is rattly on start-up and barely smooths out … it’s a far cry from nearly every other modern diesel … Like all Epicas, the CDTi has dud dynamics, lifeless steering, an overly soft ride that can still be caught out by sharp hits, and only average build quality.”

    Taken from the Wheels ’08 Year Book, Page 127.

    The XR6, is a sports sedan, and designed to be an involving (or more involving than the XT) drive. Don’t shit-can in for good handling, that is what this car sets out to achieve.

  5. Julian Edgar said,

    on December 18th, 2008 at 1:49 pm

    Ed, you missed out the previous para:

    “The Epica diesel is a hard car to judge. We didn’t like the steering, transmission behaviour and lack of engine refinement – but for many people, those would be irrelevant negatives. However, we did like the fuel economy, performance, equipment level (missing trip computer excepted), practicality and price. ”

    I am very happy to stand by that.

  6. James W said,

    on December 18th, 2008 at 4:16 pm

    Whenever I read a newspaper article, I wonder what the motivations behind the writer are. I rarely wonder what your motivations are, Julian, as you pretty much tell it how it is.

    But when you write about the Australian car industry, I wonder what said motivations are.

    The world economy is fucked… Forgive my french.

    The whole car industry is in a shitheap. Jap car makers, Euro car makers… Everyone.

    Nobody is having a good time.

    Sales in Europe have dropped 25 odd percent, Sales in Australia are down 22 percent, and the yanks are really hurting with falls of 34 odd percent.

    Not the mention the issues with debt leveraging and the huge costs of re-financing that all the big corporates are facing.

    For instance, regarding your beloved Honda and Toyota:

    “But it’s not just the big two US companies (Ford will have to follow with its own cuts very soon now that GM and Chrysler have detailed theirs): Japan’s number two carmaker, Honda, has revealed a 64% cut in forecast earnings and there are suggestions its bigger rival, Toyota will confirm speculation of a huge second half loss above $US1 billion in the next few days.”

    Look, I can definitely side with you in saying that some poor planning decisions have been made. But the imminent failures coming up for GM and Chrysler are due to bigger things than poor product planning, unlike Mitsubishi Australia’s death.

    On a completely different topic, I wish Julian and everyone else a Merry Christmas.

    (Quote and stats from

  7. Ed Stephens said,

    on December 18th, 2008 at 10:14 pm

    Fair enough Julian, but I think there are more people out there who appreciate good vehicle handling (at least from a safety aspect) than those for whom it is irrelevant.

    But on the other hand, you are quite right in saying that the kind of people who would purchase a badge-engineered and face-lifted Daewoo, would probably not care how it handles.

  8. Joe Public said,

    on December 20th, 2008 at 2:14 am

    I believe the difference in the product planning between the Ford FG Falcon and the Toyota Aurion is the Ford engineers took center stage for the product planning decisions while for Toyota, the marketers and consumer market research guided their decision making.
    I don’t disagree with the Ford engineer’s preoccupation with refining and improving the product but are they in tune with the real world? In the real world, fuel is expensive for family budgets, there is an enforced speed limit and basically in urban areas, 60-70 km/h is the maximum speed you can travel unless you can afford speeding tickets. Built-in high performance is good to have but a luxury when you’re restricted to using only 30-40% of the power output for 95% of your motoring time. Like-wise for handling, $100 million is a lot of money to spend on tinkering on high speed handling which is hardly useable by most common motorist. The money could be better spent on reducing the weight of the car [use of lighter composite materials like aluminum], better engine fuel efficiency [variable cylinder management system] or the NVH areas [smooth ride, reduce low speed noise]. The FG Falcon missed the critical issues but anyway they may suffer the same fate as the Mitsubishi 380 – a fundamentally good car but launched at the wrong time – motorists shifting downwards due to escalating fuel prices, predecessor’s poor fleet pricing legacy leaving buyers with deep depreciation resulting in a stigma. The FG Falcon will be facing similar market challenges – a global recession, weak consumer spending and most crucially, a credit crunch. Car buyers are finding it difficult to finance a new vehicle purchase in many parts of the world. This is the major reason most car companies are in financial difficulties. How many people car buy their new car outright? Not many!

  9. Franki said,

    on December 20th, 2008 at 2:37 pm

    I’m sorry Julian, but everything I read about your tests makes me think you are further and further from reality of “what people want” in anything but the small car bracket.

    Just because you want to drive Honda Insights and Prius’s, doesn’t mean that all or even close to a majority of others wants to. (after all, if they did, why are they still massively outsold by just about every other category?)

    So we are to assume that just about every other tester out there is wrong and you are right? because the Falcon seems to have done very well in the awards both here and in New Zealand where the FG was named best big car of the year and the FPV turbo 6, car of the year) and the market for XR6 is primary people who watch the V8 champs and go for the winner… doesn’t matter what you think in this regard mate.. the fact that both Ford and Holden spends big dollars on those (race) cars for as far back as I remember pretty much proves that its a big market and mindset. And I see tons of XR6 and XR8’s every morning when I drive though the city to work.. so don’t try telling me it doesn’t work. The people that buy them expect them to handle and drive better than the previous model.

    The FG is more targeted to enthusiasts than ever before… Ford have realised that more than ever the falcon needs to encourage a cult following.. and that’s not done by family ergonomics… it’s done by V8 supercars and great handling cars that look really hot inside and out.. the VE proves holden has realiased that as well, that’s why they keep trying to outdo each other in that regard with each new model inside and out.

    I’m sorry but you are the wrong person to be doing write-ups on any car other than the light weights.. Ford already has a car a little like you want.. it’s called a Mondeo, or a Focus, or a Fiesta… Not sure you noticed but the Falcon (and the commodore for that matter) are not in that class… As for the Aurion.. it doesn’t have to also fit a V8 into the chassis..all it has is the 6 so it’s design parameters can be tighter as a result.. but everyone I know that has driven both seems to give the nod to the falcon…. what makes you different?

    In summary, Julian should be put in charge of small car and alternate fuel vehicle testing.. and get someone that actually still likes and see’s the need for bigger cars to do their testing.

    When someone can produce a 1 litre turbo charged direct injected engine that has the same power/torque as the i6 or Holdens V6 and can still do 700,000+ km’s like the thousands of ford and holden taxi’s do with as low maintanence costs.. I’ll put one in my car…

    Till then try to keep in mind that some of us need big powerful cars.. I’d like to see you tow my boat or trailer up kalamunda hill at anything even approaching the speedlimit (steep ascent and 80kph)

    Sorry, but there really is a market for bigger cars.. and they don’t necessarily all have to look pedestrian inside and out to be popular, the center console of the FG tells you exactly the market they are aiming at.. I personally prefer the falcons from 10-15 years ago.. (E series) for having most of the benefits with less size and weight… (more than 200kg lighter) and better rear visability than all the current big cars with their elevated boots but that doesn’t invalidate the FG.

    Judge it for what it is.. not what you think it should be.

  10. Julian Edgar said,

    on December 20th, 2008 at 8:24 pm

    “Judge it for what it is.. not what you think it should be”

    Um, you are aware that EVERY car review that has ANY criticisms is in fact judging the car on the basis of what it should be, and in fact isn’t? Otherwise, how in fact could any criticisms be logically made?

    The Falcon SHOULD have better fuel economy, better interior packaging, better instruments and controls, and so on.

    If the Falcon had the same same quality of design and production as the Hyundai I30 CRDI that I spent driving today, it would be a vastly better car than the forlorn effort that in fact is currently in the showrooms.

    And, after all, if people like you are right – and I am wrong -shouldn’t the Falcon be selling brilliantly? As an example, it should easily be outselling the lowly Toyota Corolla, shouldn’t it?!

  11. Ed Stephens said,

    on December 21st, 2008 at 11:04 pm

    I think that no matter how good an interior the Falcon had, it would still not sell any better unless it had better fuel efficiency.

    Alot of people these days are shit-scared of 12litres/100kms and because small cars generally do better than this (by a long way) they sell more in the current climate.

    The only way forward for the Falcon is to cut weight, move to direct injection and if need be become a similar size to that of the E series Falcons to further aid weight loss.

    But please remember that a Dual Fuel Falcon is relatively cheap to run.

  12. James W said,

    on December 21st, 2008 at 11:11 pm

    Fuel efficiency is fast becoming irrelevant all over again.

    Oil prices have gone down due to the reccesion, and the government is too wimpy to tax fuel any further. Short term politics eh. Not to mention that with interest rates dropping, families are starting to feel wealthier again. At least the ones that have jobs.

    And whats the difference between 9 and 12L p/100 anyway? $12 bucks a week if you’re travelling 500ks?

    It’d be nice if ford moved to SVI though with their LPG package. I have duel fuel SVI on a 03 BA Fairmont Ghia and it’s a treat to both drive and fill up 😀

  13. Mitchell said,

    on December 23rd, 2008 at 3:02 am

    Julian, I must preface this by saying, this website has answered more questions than I have.
    It has inspspired me to re-think EVERY aspect of how every car I now look at (or drive)is engineered, intrinsic to it’s core .
    However, it appears you have too much vitriol for the FG Falcon.
    You have written several articles, venting your frustration at how the FG doesn’t move the goalposts far enough. How do you explain that, against universal praise when it comes to dynamics? ( And why other media outlets have contra-dicted you here?) .
    The following comment :

    Outstanding grip and handling are way down the list for all but a tiny minority of enthusiasts.

    could not be further from the truth.
    Enthusiasts, ( in this context; cars), in my experience rate those attributes quite highly.

    you go on to say:

    The Falcon does not need to have the best fuel economy, or the best interior packaging, or the best high speed stability, or the best NVH, or the best handling, or the best safety, or the best performance. What it needs to be is ‘good’ in as many areas as possible.

    which covers basically all bases; then you contradict yourself with :

    Therefore, some examples of benchmark cars that should have been used in the Falcon’s development include cars like the Honda Jazz (for packaging), Mazda 6 (for steering and handling), and any of the similar sized Euro diesels (for fuel economy and performance). And of course, other cars with specific strengths as well.

    Which covers ALL the afforementioned criteria, including some you formerly concede the Falcon excels at.
    I read a fuel economy trial saw the FG return lower than 7.5L/100km.
    I’ll assume you enjoy the note and response from the inilne six when a huffer is attached, and as a genuine enthusiast, no doubt await whats instore for this marvellous engine’s last update.

    I doubt you would argue that apart from the FG lacking that essential polish, or flair, fuel economy ( or wait for it …. ‘PERCEIVED’ fuel economy- which to the uninitiated equals capacity- 4.O is the highest.)
    is the largest issue= something hopefully rectified by the imminent liquid LPG system.

    And public perception transcends the niche of enthusiasts.
    scoff if you will but imagine the dynamics of such a car. This is a serious question.

    Also, if Ford wanted to appease your concerns, by either converting to diesel ( iron block exists), or reducing capacity( bore/stroke)= would these be effective measures, if not then what would? Alot of us hold this car close to our hearts, and as a car enthusiast, you must concede a soft spot for Falcon -( I am not suggesting this overshadows objectivity),and therefore give suggestions on how it may improve -instead of shallow, constant criticism.

    PS- James W= nothing is currently stable enough for car makers to base future decisions upon. Ford has the capacity to improve, and if new CEO Burela is similar to Polites, we will have another stunner on our hands soon. This is an undoubtedly significant car, and I look forward to your response.

    And your Corolla example ignores the Commodore ( mostly Omega) outselling the Corolla, aswell as the more efficient Falcon XT. Car sales do not equal best in class.

  14. Mitchell said,

    on December 23rd, 2008 at 3:15 am

    And I fail to see the 380 and FG having something in common. 380 was based on an existing FWD design, Falcon has a name to trade off and a reuptation – how can such a car possibly succumb to a 380 fate? At what point does the business case cave in? Or would you just be having a stab in the dark?
    If your articles are to be believed, FG’s flaws are all easily fixed- but sadly Ford must pander to conservatives to increase sales. Oh what a headfuck!

  15. James W said,

    on December 23rd, 2008 at 12:21 pm

    I’m certainly not saying that fuel prices right now are any comfort to the execs of Ford or Holden, they still need to get their wriggle on developing hybrids, smaller engines, further turbo technology, and diesels, but right now I do not believe that fuel prices are of such a burden as they were 6 months ago.

    And fuel prices are said to be at this level for another 2-3 years.

    So for now, fuel consumption is not weighing so heavily on the minds of your average joe. Sure, there are always going to be greenies and the like that are attracted to smaller more fuel efficient cars, but for families that have historically owned bigger cars (because they made sense), bigger cars would still seem to make sense.

  16. Mitchell said,

    on December 23rd, 2008 at 3:04 pm

    With both companies now pledging to build smaller cars, will they neglect the ‘dinosaurs’?

  17. Julian Edgar said,

    on December 23rd, 2008 at 5:11 pm

    What do the 380 and the Falcon have in common?

    Well, both companies had vehicles that had once been very successful but in recent years had had steadily declining sales.

    Both companies then decided to replace their respective models with cars that were out of exactly the same mould as the car that had been declining so much in sales.

    Both companies then seemed suprised that potential buyers didn’t see the new models, slap themselves on the foreheads, and say: “Of course, now I’ll buy one of these!”

  18. Jay said,

    on December 23rd, 2008 at 8:30 pm

    What are the numbers on private buyers of Falcon and Commodore? Are Falcons lower due to fleet sales?

  19. Richard said,

    on December 24th, 2008 at 9:14 am

    Julian… if you want to see what Ford can really do then check out the new Ford Fusion Hybrid. Out does Toyota at its own game.

    Its also built on the MAzda 6 chassis so it should have the handling characteristics to match.

    Perhaps this is what could replace the Falcon… 2.5L 4, Hybrid or a V6 and AWD available.

  20. Julian Edgar said,

    on December 24th, 2008 at 4:09 pm

    Richard, sounds a great car. Love the ‘leaves on a vine’ instrument idea.

  21. Ed Stephens said,

    on December 25th, 2008 at 10:08 am

    It’s not a Falcon if its not Rear-Wheel Drive, what would happen to the ute?

  22. Mitchell said,

    on December 25th, 2008 at 8:45 pm

    It would become a big Jumbuck.

  23. Mitchell said,

    on December 25th, 2008 at 8:48 pm

    If you drove the ZF equipped car, maybe you wouldn’t draw the same conclusion?

  24. Scott said,

    on January 3rd, 2009 at 4:06 pm

    Be interesting to see a comparison on how Julian’s Prius vs Honda Insight vs FG Falcon sale figures stack up for 2008.

    Perhaps Julian, Toyota and Honda are off the mark with regards to these two products in this country and indeed, Ford are on the ball.

    Couldn’t imagine anything worse than trying to squeeze a family of 4 into a Corolla sized car (I drive one) for a weekend away with the air con on trying to crawl up a hill.

  25. Julian Edgar said,

    on January 3rd, 2009 at 5:50 pm

    1. I have never compared the three cars. Have I ever even suggested that Ford should make a hybrid Falcon in Australia?

    2. The Prius is not a Corolla size car (although of course it depends on the Corolla you are comparing it to – when launched, the inside of the Prius was as big as the then current Camry). It is certainly big enough for a family of four who are not obese or all over 1.8 metres tall.

    3. When I had it as a press car, the Prius did 130 km/h up about the steepest open road hill you will find.

  26. Peter Tawadros said,

    on January 3rd, 2009 at 7:46 pm

    I drive a current gen. prius every now and then for work, and I have to go in to bat for these things. I didn’t think they’d be all that crash hot initially, but they are surprisingly swift. I’ve booted one up the heathcote rd hill going towards the Princes Hwy and not run out of acceleration, with the speedo swinging past 110 and still surging. Another time I’ve put my foot down to get past a truck and startled myself when I looked back down to the speedo and saw 100 flashing up in a 60 zone., so I can definitely believe it’d do 130km/h up a steep open road hill. All you nay-sayers, do yourselves a favour and book in a test drive just so you have something to base your opinion on.

    The few things I don’t like about it are the vast expanse of blandness, and the driver’s position, which even in it’s lowest setting is too high, and the steering wheel is unadjustable for reach, making it difficult to get too comfortable. The climate control isn’t that crash hot either. I definitely wouldn’t buy one at the new price, but if they get down to the 12-13k mark used I’d seriously look at one.

  27. Ford Man said,

    on February 6th, 2009 at 10:53 pm

    My leased XR6 (6sd auto) has done 5000kms now and I agree with most of the review.

    However, the fuel consumption is sitting at 10lt/100km (actual not indicated), in mixed driving. Perhaps the 6sp auto is significantly better than the 5sp? Performance off the line is just incredible too. Other unmentioned positives include the seamless ipod and bluetooth phone integration (optional).

    On the downsides, the steering wheel is far too low and blocks view of the instruments. The blue highlights on the dash and leather seats look odd (cheap) in my orange car. Traveling fast on a tight windy road requires savage steering wheel inputs. Fast steering wheel inputs at low engine speed can beat the power assistance. Sound system isn’t clear. Radio reception is poor. Different off button symbols and positions for the AC and radio looks odd. Auto headlights can only be adjusted for timing, not sensitivity.

    Otherwise, quiet and reliable so far.

  28. Ford Man said,

    on February 6th, 2009 at 11:33 pm

    Re James W comments:
    Unfortunately, I don’t think it matters much what the price of fuel is. Car buyers are now spooked by the potential for fuel price rises in the future and are not willing to take a chance on a vehicle perceived to be a gas guzzler (unless they get the space to match – SUV).

    This problem combined with the bogan image of the older Falcons means sales of the FG are struggling. The walking fingers advertising campaign was an effort to shake off the old image.

    Perhaps these factors could have been overcome with a better vehicle, but as things stand I think Ford Australia is in for some very lean years.

  29. Harrold said,

    on January 18th, 2010 at 1:55 am

    I owned a ford ba and it never made anywhere near it’s claimed fuel economy. It’s around town figure was 17-18l/100. And i wasn’t alone as many others had the same issue.

    How do they think they can get 10l/100 when it’s not far off the ba’s engine?.

    And on the captiva comments, who in their right mind gives a shit about reviews. People just buy cars they don’t give to shits about badges history. This is something people need to get, not everyone is brand loyal, and the brand loyal ones are buying 2nd hand 95% of the time.