What the CarExpert team will buy for the price of a new Ford Ranger
So far, we’re just two months into 2023, but at the moment, the Ford Ranger has replaced the Toyota HiLux on the sales charts.
It was a bestseller in Australia for both January and February, and there’s no sign of it slowing down anytime soon.
But what if you don’t want a Ranger? Yes, that’s what we asked auto expert team.
The rules for this challenge are very simple. We picked the Ranger XLT Bi-Turbo all-wheel drive system as a stopover, with a list price of $61,990 before hitting the road.
Yes, you can spend more on the Ranger – and we could play that game soon – but for now, we want to keep everything. relative can reach.
Check out what the team will spend their hard-earned on below, and let us know what you’ll buy instead in the comments.
Alborz Fallah: Tank 300 ($55,990 drive away) – and some modifications
It’s not even a question for me.
I would buy a GWM Tank 300, fit 24 inch wheels in it, wrap it in matte black and call it G TANK and live happily ever after.
I love that Tank so much, I hope to do so when the vehicle is properly sold.
Scott Collie: The Subaru WRX RS Manual ($50,490 Before Hit the Road)
This is not the car I really want, but the rule is the rule and the Honda Civic Type R is too expensive to qualify. Ut.
I know the WRX isn’t perfect, but it does a lot of what I want on a daily basis. It’s all-wheel drive for manual, snowy trips, and there’s enough space for a golf club in the trunk. It’s also pretty fast.
I know it’s not as wild a kid as it once was, but there’s a lot of potential in the newest model that can be unleashed with a few select modifications. The remaining $10,000 under budget is enough for me to buy an exhaust, along with some racing wheels and sticky tires that will (probably) unleash the monster that lies within.
As for how I want to specify it? Red color, manual transmission (as God intended), RS form for a beautiful interior.
I would also invest in a roll of duct tape to permanently cover the annoying driver monitoring sensor, instead of having to scroll through the menu system every time you press the start button.
Jade Credentino: Skoda Octavia RS wagon ($57,490 before departure)
I would choose a Skoda Octavia RS Wagon in gray – similar to Audi’s Gray Daytona. I would also choose the sunroof and the Premium Package if I could increase my budget by $1000 or so (You can’t – Ed.).
The wagon fits everything I need during the week and even on weekends. I can put a surfboard in the car or leave it empty in the back and go to the driver’s movie theater on a Saturday night.
Standard features tick all my boxes but I would splurge on extras in the Premium Package like a head-up display, adaptive chassis control, and front and rear seats heated.
Now that I’m in Melbourne, I have no doubt they will come in handy!
William Stopford: Kia Stinger 330S ($56,530 before sale)
I’ve driven a lot of really cool crossovers lately, including the Cupra Formentor and the turbocharged Mazda CX-5. The upcoming Mazda CX-60 also looks like an attractive package and costs less than $60,000 before hitting the road.
But no, sorry, I don’t need an SUV. I don’t have kids nor a walker, so there’s no need for extra space and a higher hip point.
A Cupra Leon VZ or Skoda Octavia RS is tempting, but I’ll pick the first car that comes to mind when this question is posed to me: the Kia Stinger.
Sadly, the $60,000 cut doesn’t get me into a GT, but I could buy a 330S with the same twin-turbo 3.3-liter V6 making 274 kW and 510 lb-ft of torque. Nm, as well as a limited-slip differential and dual-mode exhaust.
I miss out on some important safety equipment, not to mention some conveniences like ventilated front seats, but I still get a practical hatchback body and a 7-year warranty.
I also got the last affordable, mass-market rear-wheel drive sports car (ok, technically a hatchback), right before Kia pulled the plug.
Anthony Crawford: Hyundai i30 Drive-N ($56,200 pre-sale)
For me, it’s a hot hatch version of the Hyundai i30 N Drive-N Limited Edition in Phantom Black Pearl with a Hyundai-made eight-speed dual-clutch transmission for $56,200 without tolls.
It’s based on the i30 Hatch N Premium with a sunroof but it also has great Alcantara seats and steering wheel, along with a set of eye-catching 19-inch forged alloys in Dark Bronze.
I drove this car on the track at The Bend and it seems to be faster than any other i30 N – despite the fact that its mechanical specs are the same as the standard i30 N.
And think this is still a practical hatchback to boot but with more track ability that any other competitor (with the exception of the more expensive Honda Civic Type R) is an easy winner. it just goes so well out of the box.
James Wong: Cupra Leon VZ ($57,990 while driving)
For me, it’s hard to beat the Cupra Leon VZ, which, at $56,490 drive-away, fits within a budget for a handful of options and/or accessories to choose from.
In a world where prices continue to rise, being able to get a fun, fast, and well-equipped compact performance car for under $60,000 becomes more difficult — but Cupra has it covered. Friend.
The Leon VZ is essentially a Volkswagen Golf GTI with a different name and face, with a more focused chassis and a more aggressive look inside and out. It’s also much cheaper than its German cousin, which can only be a plus.
I’ll add the $2490 Leather and Audio Pack primarily for the upgraded nine-speaker Beats sound system, while the all-leather interior with power seats adds a sense of class. I would also purchase a set of VZx copper alloys available as a $1260 accessory.
Second place goes to the fully optionally equipped Audi A3 35 TFSI Sportback, with its 1.5 TSI mild-hybrid petrol engine and plenty of available features, it’s a pretty efficient small luxury car for a price below 60,000 RRP.
Paul Maric: Subaru Outback AWD Touring XT ($55,990 before hitting the road)
I think I will buy a Subaru Outback XT. I love the concept of the Outback – it has the space you need, raised off the ground, but not just another SUV.
It was initially toned down somewhat by the engine but it now has a turbocharger, which helps to close the gap. It’s a great package.
Jack Quick: Subaru Outback AWD Sport XT ($52,190 pre-sale)
If I had $60,000 to spend on a new car right now, I would most likely choose the Subaru Outback XT Sport. I will save the rest on fuel!
Other vehicles on my short list include the Skoda Octavia RS wagon, the Cupra Formentor VZ and even the Mazda CX-60 G40e Evolve. The Outback XT won out, though.
The recently introduced Outback XT is powered by a 2.4-liter turbocharged flat-four engine that produces 183 kW of power and 350 Nm of torque.
This extra power and torque compared to the regular model’s 2.5-liter naturally aspirated engine makes traveling at higher speeds like overtaking a lot easier. However, the car was thirsty and needed a minimum of 95 RON premium unleaded gasoline.
Some of my favorite things about the Outback are its extremely consistent handling in both urban and rural environments, as well as its spacious interior and couch-like seating.
For the type of driving that I usually do when I’m not driving a press, mainly driving on highways and country highways, the Outback XT is the best option for under $60,000.