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The automobile in question | The Press



Our collaborator answers questions from readers

Dangerous or not?

I just received our new 2023 Corolla LE Hybrid Ti car. What a beautiful car and what technology, what a wow! Here is my question: having bought my Blizzak W90 winter tires with steel rims in October before there was a shortage, I did not think of the tire pressure sensors, so my tire warning light is on in my dashboard. I called my dealership and according to the service manager, 80% of customers don’t have the sensors installed on their winter tires and it’s not dangerous. What do you think ?

Jean-Louis M.

At the risk of causing the annoyance of your workshop supervisor, it is imperative to equip all four winter tires with tire pressure sensors. And all the more so at this time of year when punctures are more frequent and negligence reaches its climax among motorists. After all, who checks their tire pressure when the mercury drops below freezing? On this subject, it is necessary to remember not to check the tire pressure at a temperature below -10°C, since the valve could freeze. These sensors exist for your safety, that of your occupants and other road users. To deprive oneself of it is indeed dangerous.

A matter of common sense


When the car ages, it is necessary to favor a preventive and not a curative approach to its maintenance.

You often say “provided the vehicle has been maintained”. Should we follow the manufacturer’s maintenance schedule, even if sometimes it may seem unnecessary?

Alain B.

The manufacturer’s maintenance schedule is a good starting point. Since the vehicle is aging, it is also necessary to favor a preventive and not a curative approach to maintenance. In short, do not wait for the problems to accumulate. For example, a scratch on the body should be corrected as soon as possible. Fuel your thermal vehicle with the recommended gasoline too. Or don’t wait for the dashboard to light up like a Christmas tree. Clearly, do not put back what, in an inflationary context, is not so simple. Consumers sometimes have other, more pressing priorities.

Reliability first


2020 Toyota Highlander

We own a 2009 RAV4 Sport V6 with 260,000 km. We are looking for a replacement vehicle. The reliability of this Toyota has been impeccable in 14 years. We travel a lot with an Alto trailer that weighs 1765 lbs empty, so the vehicle must easily tow 3000 lbs. All-wheel drive is essential. Fuel consumption should be as low as possible, but a 100% electric vehicle seems impossible to us due to the distances we cover during our travels. The RAV4 Trail or the Subaru Wilderness are in our sights. Reliability must be there. Do you have other options to offer us, such as a hybrid?

Francis V.

For the lowest possible fuel consumption, why not opt ​​for the Highlander Hybrid? It consumes at least 3 L/100 km less than a Subaru Outback Wilderness (this one is not the most frugal in the range) and some 2 L/100 km less than the RAV4 Trail. That said, the Highlander Hybrid doesn’t have as high ground clearance as the previous two models or as capable all-wheel drive as the Subaru. This is where you have to compromise. The best of both worlds would probably be to opt for a “regular” Outback. This offers higher ground clearance than the Highlander and the fuel consumption difference is then reduced to approximately 1.2 L/100 km.

We are preparing for summer


The Fiat 500 is not a model of reliability.

I’m thinking of getting a convertible Fiat 500 for the summer with less than 150,000 km and not having been used in the winter. Given the bad reputation of this model, is it a good idea or do you suggest another model? I need space for two golf bags.

Dennis B.

Indeed, the 500 is not a model of reliability, especially if it has been poorly maintained. Why not consider a Volkswagen Beetle? The latter is more reliable, its components more proven. Definitely a better choice.

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