Four Wheel Drive (4WD) / SUV Road Tests

Audi Q7 hits the mark again

Audi Q7 hits the mark again

Audi's second-generation Q7 has been a long time coming. David Thomson checks in after a week behind the wheel of Ingolstadt's new sports utility flagship.

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Toyota Prado at its best when the going gets tough

Toyota Prado at its best when the going gets tough

Toyota's go-anywhere SUV has been updated with a new engine and gearbox. David Thomson heads off the beaten track to put it through its paces.

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Kia takes strides with new Sorento

Kia takes strides with new Sorento

Bigger, bolder and better equipped than its predecessor, the latest Sorento is an important new model for Kia. David Thomson reports in after a week driving the mid-range EX diesel variant.

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BMW sharpens appeal of key market players

BMW sharpens appeal of key market players

Halting territorial loss in one area and making a gain in another is driving BMW's strategy for two key products experiencing different fortunes.

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New Hyundai Tucson up for the challenge

New Hyundai Tucson up for the challenge

Ready for a clash of the Titans? It seems probable with Hyundai's newest sports utility being of a size to square up directly against the category's kingpin.

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Suzuki sharpens Vitara up for the road

Suzuki sharpens Vitara up for the road

Normal? Hardly. But Suzuki New Zealand says it has 200 good reasons for having a buck each way by introducing its new Vitara, while keeping the decade-old Grand edition on sale alongside the car that supposedly replaces it.

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Mazda's popular compact extends its reach

Mazda's popular compact extends its reach

Mazda's new compact SUV has been causing quite a stir since its launch earlier in the year. David Thomson has been trying both entry-level petrol and flagship diesel variants.

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Toyota gives torque tweak to Land Cruiser Prado

Toyota gives torque tweak to Land Cruiser Prado

Facelifts that fail to deliver any visual change whatsoever aren't common, but that's exactly what has happened to the Land Cruiser Prado - unlike the impending upgrade for the big brother 200-Series, there's no new change to the now quite old (last revised in 2013) look.

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Territory and Falcon XR8 - Ford delivers on last hurrahs

Territory and Falcon XR8 - Ford delivers on last hurrahs

Just over 10 years after its launch, the Ford Territory stands proud as a vehicle that was ahead of its time when it first appeared, and remains a remarkably appealing SUV choice 18 months out from its production demise.

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Touch of class in Volvo XC90

Touch of class in Volvo XC90

Fresh-baked cinnamon rolls, a welcoming cold drink poured from a classy decanter from a top Swedish glass-maker, the keys to your new car presented in a personalised, handcrafted box: this isn't how car selling usually goes, even in high-end hangouts, yet it is to be part of the new Volvo experience, brought on by the latest XC90.

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Sport is the winner

Sport is the winner

Halfway through its production life, the fourth-generation Honda CR-V has had a mild facelift and upgrade. David Thomson takes the flagship version on a winter alpine trek to see how it stacks up.

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Land Rover's rugged, smart off-roader takes new direction

Land Rover's rugged, smart off-roader takes new direction

Even in places where climatic and geographic conditions encourage sports utility vehicle sales - take a bow, Otago - an emergent syndrome is being noticed.

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VW ticks boxes with updated Touareg

VW ticks boxes with updated Touareg

A substantial midlife upgrade and an improved standard specification at no additional cost should boost the appeal of Volkswagen's large Touareg SUV. David Thomson tries the entry-level 150kW turbo-diesel.

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Lexus flexes SUV muscles

Lexus flexes SUV muscles

Lexus has filled a vital niche in its line-up with the new NX.  David Thomson puts this new luxury SUV through its paces.

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Plenty to like in VW's practical Polo

Plenty to like in VW's practical Polo

Volkswagen is expecting big things of its latest CrossPolo supermini SUV. David Thomson slips behind the wheel to see how it fares in local conditions.

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New Skoda Scout a spacious surprise

New Skoda Scout a spacious surprise

Plenty of fun, not a lot of badges: That's my memory of adolescent years as a boy scout.

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New Subaru Outback a good fit for Kiwis

New Subaru Outback a good fit for Kiwis

Subaru's latest version of the Outback is being touted as being produced especially for the marque's greatest drivers - New Zealanders. Catherine Pattison found out on the predominantly off-road Central Otago launch drive that it is a suitable fit for southerners.

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Plenty of appeal in new Holden Trax

Plenty of appeal in new Holden Trax

A new 1.4-litre turbo engine boosts the appeal of the Holden Trax. David Thomson reports back after a week behind the wheel of the compact sports utility machine.

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New Lexus NX nice and nimble

New Lexus NX nice and nimble

No-one needs tell Lexus how hot crossovers are; the RX has been the brand's sales leader here for some years now.

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BMW X4 - a strong, sporty SUV

BMW X4 - a strong, sporty SUV

BMW's insatiable desire to fill every market niche in the premium new vehicle market has continued with the arrival of the new X4. David Thomson puts the mid-sized 4x4 that thinks it is a coupe to the test.

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