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Tradies Reviews

Mid-sized commercial vans in the popular 2.5-3.5 tonne GVM segment used to be little more than containers-on-wheels in which performance, safety and driver comfort were not considered high priorities. However, numerous manufacturers now offer vans that can not only haul competitive payloads but...Read more
The metamorphosis of the humble 4x4 dual cab ute from a bare-boned utilitarian workhorse to a work-and-play family fun machine has been remarkable. One of the driving forces behind the booming popularity of dual cab utes in this dual-purpose role has been Ford's premium-grade Ranger Wildtrak ,...Read more
The rise and rise of 4x4 dual cab ute ownership proves these high-riding hay haulers have created a lucrative sweet spot in the Australian car market. The Ford Ranger and Toyota Hilux are not only runaway leaders of their segment, they recently became the industry’s two top-selling models for the...Read more
While the popularity of diesel-powered dual-cab utes continues to grow and grow, the same can’t be said for those equipped with petrol engines, with less torque and higher fuel consumption blamed for their drooping sales. Want proof? Even top-selling Toyota recently took the axe to the the 4.0-...Read more
The small (under 2.5 tonne GVM) commercial van market in Australia is characterised by fewer sales and competitors than the medium (2.5-3.5-tonne GVM) van segment. The requirements of small vans tend to be more specialised, typically involving light loads, stop-start city traffic and confined pick-...Read more
Although Ford's Transit is Europe's most popular commercial van it has struggled to compete with the likes of Toyota's top-selling HiAce and Hyundai's iLoad in Australia's mid-sized (2.5-3.5 tonne GVM) van segment, largely due to the lack of an automatic transmission. In June 2017 Ford Australia's...Read more
Toyota has a lot riding on the enduring success of its latest NG-series HiLux in an increasingly competitive Australian and global ute market that forced it to freeze its initial design plans and come up with something better. Much better in fact, because this is the best one yet and it relied...Read more
There's an emerging trend within the popular 2.5 to 3.5-tonne medium-sized van segment that's offering a practical alternative to the large SUV or dual cab ute as a work-and-play vehicle – the Crew van. The Hyundai iLoad , Mercedes Vito , Toyota HiAce and VW Transporter all offer the option of a...Read more
Not all commercial enterprises require medium-sized commercial vans like the Toyota HiAce or Hyundai iLoad with 2.5-3.5 tonne GVM capacity. That's why there's a healthy market for under-2.5 tonne GVM versions tailored to suit small to medium-sized businesses and fleets. The Renault Kangoo has...Read more
For decades the Falcon station wagon was Ford’s ideal family transporter. Then in the new millennium came the Territory SUV, which, with seating for up to seven, multiple clever storage ideas, and the lower-priced option of rear-wheel drive (RWD) only, was a natural successor. The Aussie-designed,...Read more
Toyota's HiLux is feeling the heat from Ford's (PXII) Ranger in Australia's hotly contested 4x4 ute market. Recent national sales figures show the Ranger is outselling the former undisputed champion of this segment and closing the gap on the Toyota's long-standing dominance of the 4x2 ute segment,...Read more
Since its 2010 launch the Amarok has set design, engineering, build quality and performance benchmarks, winning worldwide praise. But local sales have consistently been at the tail end of the top 10. The fully galvanised steel body sits on a separate ladder-frame chassis.Read more
Hyundai’s contender in the under-$60,000 people mover segment boasts a heritage spanning a full decade. During that time it has built a loyal customer base that appreciates its spacious and airy eight-seater cabin, ease of driving, proven durability and five-year warranty. Even so, the iMax and...Read more
When Nissan launched its all-new NP300 Navara range in 2015, it certainly raised eyebrows with its bold decision to equip all of its dual cabs except cab chassis with coil-spring rear suspension. This was a notable departure from the long accepted wisdom of leaf springs, which since the horse-and-...Read more
Launched in 2010, the Amarok has earned wide industry acclaim yet has failed to put a dent in the sales dominance of the Toyota HiLux and Ford Ranger in the hotly contested 4x4 dual cab ute category. Perhaps realising the twin-turbo 2.0 litre four cylinder diesel it was launched with was considered...Read more
Anyone shopping for a SWB one-tonne van with turbo-diesel and manual transmission will know there’s plenty of competition in this segment (2.5-3.5 tonne GVM) with numerous well-known brands all in the high $30,000 price bracket. So when a new contender arrives that undercuts well-established rivals...Read more
The RAM 2500 from RAM Trucks Australia, which is rated to tow nearly 7.0 tonnes, is designed primarily as a heavy duty towing platform with a huge Cummins turbo-diesel engine, long wheelbase, high kerb weight, exhaust brake and lots of room inside a luxurious cabin. These 'Australianised' RAM...Read more
Mark Oastler road tests and reviews the new Hyundai iLoad diesel auto with specs, fuel consumption and verdict. Toyota's venerable HiAce has been the undisputed leader in the light commercial van market for many years now (even though it's not a genuine one-tonner), but its supremacy in this high...Read more
Mark Oastler road tests and reviews the new Toyota HiAce LWB Crew Van with specs, fuel consumption and verdict. The Toyota HiAce was launched in 1967 and has been the benchmark for light commercial vans in Australia for several decades with its combination of good load space, simple robust...Read more
Mark Oastler road tests and reviews the new Mercedes Benz G-Professional Cab Chassis with specs, fuel consumption and verdict at its Australian launch in Melbourne. For the brave men and women of our defence forces there can be no compromise in the vehicles chosen to perform in life-threatening...Read more