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Car reviews - Holden - Commodore - Calais sedan

Used Rivals

9 May 2003

THE Fairmont is slightly bigger than the Calais and is the most powerful car of this group. In terms of value for money, it is neck and neck with the Calais with the lack of an airbag the only minus. The 4.0-litre, inline six-cylinder engine pumps out 148kW with lots of low down torque which makes it faster than the Calais but not as economical.

THE Vienta might be bland looking but under the skin is a strong rival. The 3.0-litre, twin cam, V6 engine combines a healthy 139kW with better fuel economy than its Australian competitors. Equipment and on-road behaviour are good although the ride does not quite match the Verada.

THE Verada does not quite match its Australian rivals for interior space or performance although the 3.0-litre, 120kW V6 is smooth and refined. The Verada's strong points are a well sorted chassis providing good handling and ride with minimal body roll or understeer.

THE under-rated Maxima Ti is powered by a smooth 3.0-litre, 122kW V6 coupled to a four-speed automatic driving the front wheels. Ride quality is good with typical front-wheel-drive handling. The equipment level is competitive with the Calais and includes a keyless entry touch pad but no airbags.

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