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Questions from June 2010
Is it safe to leave a 5-year-old child to play in a parked car behind the steering wheel? Is there any possibility that the child can activate an airbag and get injured? We have two cars in the family,...
I recently ran into the back of the car in front. The car in front was turning right onto a main road and I was following. It was clear left and right. I did a final check and proceeded, but found the...
Having been caught out on my last Vauxhall with an expensive timing chain failure, when should I consider changing it on my 57-reg Vectra Estate Auto 1.9D (150) please? It's currently on 60,000 miles.
I climb, hike and mountaineer, and want a 4WD to haul me and my gear off road to the crags, as I'm 60 and can't walk 20 miles before climbing a mountain any more. I'd like decent ground clearance, 60mph...
I recently passed a new factory which was not working yet. I asked what it was for and was told it is a new joint venture between Mercedes-Benz and BMW to make batteries for their new range (unannounced...
I have a 2008 Ford Mondeo hatchback with original Bridgestone Potenza 235/45 R17 97W tyres which will need replacing very soon. These are low profile and are noisy. Please can you suggest a good replacement...
Can I run my 2003 Citroen Picasso Desire 2HDI on biodiesel?
The police inform me that my number plate has been cloned and on two separate occasions this vehicle and its owners have been thieving in my name. Obviously the police come to me each time as I am the...
I need your advice to find my new car because I don't know the UK market very well, and I am getting mixed messages from everyone. In the next 12-16 months I'll be covering 1000 motorway miles on a weekly...
I currently own an '08 plate Subaru Impreza WRX which I love dearly but, having been caught speeding (39 in a 30 zone!) earlier this year, I now have three points on my licence and my insurance premium...
Two months ago I purchased a 2-year-old Mazda CX-7 2.3T with 9500 miles on the clock. 4000 miles later the turbo has gone and is being replaced under warranty. I'm happy with that. However, I do have a...
Seven weeks and 3000 miles after I took delivery of a new Skoda Octavia Scout 1.8 TSI I decided to check my tyre pressures. They were all too low by about 10 per cent. This I fixed using my own pump and...
I want to buy a car or MPV which has a boot large enough to take a wheelchair and still leave some additional space for shopping. I would prefer a diesel manual model. Ease of access is also important....
I fancy a Toyota iQ - do you think it's worth going for the 1.33 automatic? Most of my driving is in town and I'm fed up of my big BMW 535D. Also, do you know if there will be any modifications to the...
My 54-plate (2005) Skoda Octavia 2.0 TDI PD Elegance has developed a tendency not to start occasionally. It was checked by the Skoda agent, who found no fault when scanning it, however it behaved itself...
I have a 54-reg Nissan Patrol 3.0. During January this year I had a head gasket failure. I put it into an independent garage that boasts of savings of around half the main dealer labour charges. They used...
The EPC light was illuminated my 2005 Volkswagen Polo's dash. I started messing about with it and found it was the brake light switch was the problem.
I own a Skoda Octavia vRS TDi, a fairly quick car with bags of torque. However, I am not a hooligan - simply a 57 year old businessman with a motor sport and technical history. Two months ago, I noticed...
My LPG factory-built Vauxhall Astra Elegance is stalling on roundabouts. I contacted Vauxhall but they're about as much use as a chocolate teapot. I need to buy a filter kit - any suggestions?
Could you please advise the running and servicing costs for the Jaguar S-Type? It has done 180,000 miles but runs like a beauty. I only paid £850 for it and it's in mint condition, do you think I got a...
The wing mirror on my 1998 Mercedes-Benz E-Class seems detached from the motor that adjusts the vertical tilt. It still moves horizontally but, when I try to adjust it vertically, I can hear the motor...
At low revs there is the sound of slight vibration type noise, less so with the windows closed.
I recently bought a 58-reg Citroen C1 from a dealer for my son. It came with service history showing that a service had been done and stamped by the dealer at 10,200 miles, and according to the documents...
I have a 2004 Vauxhall Meriva which has just has £1200 spent on it for a new steering column and other steering and gear-related work. I am considering a new Meriva SE 140ps to replace it. I have been...
I am looking for a replacement car key for a Ford Fiesta and I have read in your column that this can be done more cheaply by providers other than the dealers. I live in Dover. Could you give me some names?
I took my 16-year-old son for his first driving lesson on Saturday. We used a place in Hornchurch, Essex which has 12 acres of private roads where you can use your own car. My father took me there 35 years...
The remote locking key unit for my Hyundai Coupe has just gone faulty. After fitting a new battery it still failed to work, so I contacted my local Hyundai agent to price a new one. I was told that it...
I'm trying to think of a sports car that is similar to a Healey 3000 in looks (may only come as a coupe though) and I believe it's German with a large BMW 'M' Sport engine. It has large low profile tyres...
We are thinking of buying a Nissan 350Z and wonder what you think of them. Are Nissan's automatics reliable? Do you know of any issues with these cars? Also we have seen tiptronics - are these as reliable...
I need a new motor on a budget. I've found a 2-litre petrol Peugeot 406, 1997 R-reg with 77,000 genuine miles. The seller has every MoT since new, it's very clean and tidy inside and out and MoT'd 'til...
I am buying a new car and am going back to a tourer. I owned a 54-plate Ford Mondeo tourer ST TDCI and loved it. I have been looking at the new model and think its great (Titanium X Sport (163)). Then...
A couple of weeks ago, one of your articles implied that it was not possible to get 'pleasure use' cover for non-business drivers on motor trade policies. I thought you may like to know that some insurers...
I have noticed that my TomTom satnav always seems to show a speed two to three mph less than that registered by the cars speedometer. I use it in two different cars and the difference is approximately...
I have just noticed that when I turn on my air conditioning the pump is making a noise. It only started this afternoon before the guy sorted out my hands-free kit for the car. A friend of mine says that...
Which small or medium-sized automatic family cars have the best turning circle?
Can anyone tell me does the back half of the sunroof on a Megane Tourer open and if so how?
I've recently moved to work in Norway and I'm shocked at the price of cars, which are often three times the UK price for new and even seven or eight times the price of an equivalent secondhand car in the...
I have a 6-year-old Nissan Primera 2.2 diesel. Its a YD22DDTi engine and the spec for the oil in the hand book is 5W-30, API CF-4, ACEA B1, B3. Tesco have the Castrol Magnatec 5W-30 API SL/CF, ACEA A3/B4....
I share a company car which is allocated to a female colleague. It's time to change the car. She's currently considering a Nissan Qashqai (high driving position, decent payload, and medium size) but is...
As I work from home and do all the school runs and camping/driving holidays, I have a 2001 Mercedes-Benz ML270 (95,000 miles) but I want a car with better fuel economy and that is also cheaper. My wife...
I have been offered a 'brand new' Cadillac CTS 3.6 for £16,500. The car appears to be brand new, unmarked, with some transit packaging still in place, with 120 miles on the clock and a new battery. On...
I have bought a Ford Focus RS and I did not get a manual for the navigation system. I need to know how to adjust the volume of the voice so I can hear her?
I'm interested in a Ford Focus Zetec 2001 1.6L which has done 97,000 miles. The trader wants £1450 but it is listed as 'Trade-In to Clear' and I was wondering if this is a category I should be wary about?...
I note your advice to hit 4500 rpm through the gears several times a week. Does this apply to all engines? At only 4000 rpm in my 2008 Citroen C5 2.0HDI I'm doing 40 mph in second gear and 65-70 mph in...
A couple of weeks ago I had my car serviced at my local garage, then yesterday I parked up and with my wheels at an angle I noticed something dangling from the suspension behind the wheel arch which looked...
I am considering buying a car in France to keep in France. It must be a 2-pedal automatic, must have four doors, and must be able to accommodate four people plus a wheelchair. I have thought about a Renault...
I am looking to change my car, a Citroen Xsara Picasso HDI exclusive on a 51 plate. I've enjoyed the comfort and space of this car, particularly the boot because it holds two sets of golf equipment. I'm...
I have just bought a 1-year-old Hyundai from a main dealership that is over 40 miles from my home address. Do I have to to use the dealership for servicing or can I take it to my local trustworthy service...
A recent correspondent to your Saturday Telegraph letters harshly criticised the roads in Northumberland. I drive hundreds of miles each week here, where we have an excellent system of uncluttered roads...
We're looking to get an MPV which is like the Toyota Town Ace (with seats to make a bed or load space) but has better reviews if at all possible?
 

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