Beat Clean Car fines: buy these lifestyle vehicles now
Search Driven for Mitsubishi Triton for sale
We’ve already taken you through some top performance-car picks to snap up before the Clean Car fines hit.
But when we’re talking post-April expenses, we simply can’t ignore one-tonne utes and related “lifestyle” (meaning proper off-roading and towing) SUVs.
They’re mostly diesel-powered, large and often thirstier than your average family car, thanks to the power and torque they have to provide to do the big jobs.
So which models should you grab before the fines hit? Check out this trio.
We’ve been consistently impressed with the GWM Cannon ute since its launch in 2020: the Chinese maker’s first foray into a credible one-tonne truck boasts good looks, excellent quality, lots of equipment and a smooth powertrain, including an eight-speed automatic gearbox.
Some nice detail touches, too: like the extendable step on the tailgate for easier access when loading.
While it doesn’t quite match the ute-establishment for towing with a three-tonne rating, it still hauls a whole lot more than your average crossover/SUV.
The really big thing about the Cannon is value for money. It makes a strong case on purchase price compared with the mainstream Thai-made vehicles from Ford and Toyota.
For that reason the Clean Car fine will hurt a little more for the Cannon, so now’s the time.
The Triton is one of New Zealand’s one-tonne stalwarts. It doesn’t necessarily challenge for top spot in the sales charts alongside the Ford Ranger or Toyota Hilux, but it arguably has an even more loyal following.
The engine is strong, the ride/handling combination has always impressed, it can tow 3.5 tonnes and it’s one of very few utes in this segment that’s available with an AWD system that’s suitable for open-road on-road driving.
And Mitsubishi’s Super Select is a particularly good AWD setup regardless of the type of vehicle.
There’s a certain segment of SUV we sometimes call “utes with boots”: wagons that are largely based on the tough underpinnings of pickup trucks, but with car-like passenger space and luxury.
And often with seven seats, as is the case with the Mitsubishi Pajero Sport. Borrowing heavily from the Triton, the Pajero Sport is fantastic off-road and while the more sophisticated (read more comfortable) rear suspension means a slightly reduced towing capacity, 3.1 tonnes is still a lot of trailer, boat or caravan.
More to the point, the smooth powertrain and full-time AWD make it an enjoyable on-road vehicle as well. It’ll never be cheaper than now.
- In partnership with Andrew Simms