with Colin Bower
One of the things I enjoy about being part of the Driveline team is the opportunity to test drive the latest models to help my clients with their decision-making process.
As independent advisers, we can be completely unbiased across the makes but like all car enthusiasts, our opinions can be somewhat subjective. We all have different likes, dislikes and priorities but we at Driveline have stuck our necks out and predicted our top ten models for 2018, and Triton is in the mix.
I drove a new GLX-R 4WD Automatic and came away thinking it was really a bit of a bargain at $597 per month plus GST – by some margin over the other main-stream Utes. Add to this a 10-year drive train warranty with 5-year/130,000km new car warranty gives quite a degree of confidence for any owner.
Is it perfect? Of course not - what is, but to my mind the Triton is an honest down to earth truck with a reasonable level of creature comforts and convenience features such as Smartphone/Apple Carplay, reversing camera, cruise control, and comfortable ergonomics.
The 2.4Litre 135kW turbo-diesel is adequate for most jobs including towing up to 3.1 tons of braked trailer and overtaking OK without being over-endowed with power, though you can stir it along with a bit of consciousness. I liked the transmission set up with optional full time 4WD mode although 5 speeds is lagging behind some of the competitors although in compensation it does offer ‘sports mode'.
Safety features are right up there with 5 out of 5-star rating and great all round visibility although I would have liked seat height adjustment being a bit vertically challenged. Other minor niggles were the utilitarian ride and cabin appointment, practical over opulent. On the other hand, the fuel economy really stands out in this class at around 7 litres per 100ks, and the styling is greatly improved over previous efforts.
Yes, I could live with it without necessarily loving it, but when you take into consideration the low cost of ownership and the absolute bargain lease rates, it's not hard to see why Triton sales have been so strong over the last year and we predict that to continue for 2018.