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Asked by Mark Adamson
I need to find a replacement for my 2005 R51 Nissan Pathfinder diesel, which has just holed a piston. I tow a caravan, ski boat and do the occasional four-wheel driving. I also use four-wheel drive to launch the boat from the riverbank. I would love to replace it with something new, but think something second-hand might be more affordable. I want an auto diesel only a few years old, but at this stage I have no idea what to start looking for. My budget is around $40,000, but if spending a little more gets me a better car then I would manage. Are you able to suggest a couple of brands and models to look for?
Answered by CarsGuide28 Oct 2016
You haven't given us the weight of the caravan you want to tow, which goes a long way to determining the best car for you. We'll err on the side of caution and go for cars with a towing capacity of at least 2500 kg that fall within your budget. It's always best to go for the latest model you can afford, which means around 2103 in your case. I'm guessing you're over the Pathfinder given your experience with the holed piston in your current car, but the Nissan is an option for you. So too are the Jeep Grand Cherokee and the Mitsubishi Pajero, although the Pajero's rear suspension is prone to sagging when heavily loaded and I would rule that out on that basis. If you can stretch your budget a little you could consider the Landrover Discovery 4, which does everything you want well, but is the most expensive of this bunch. For me the pick of the bunch for me is the Toyota Prado, for performance, economy, and reliability. The only issue for you could be that the Prado's towing rating is 2500 kg, the lowest of the cars we mention here.
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