At CarAdvice, we are nothing if not trendy.
Beards? Got them. Bars you haven’t heard of? Been there. Netflix? Watching it right now.
And in our world of new passenger car sales, the trendiest area is, without at doubt, small SUVs.
The category has experienced almost 35 per cent year-on-year growth and covers some 27 models from more than 20 manufacturers.
So with buyers flocking to this segment, it made sense to get in on the compact SUV craze when choosing our newest Melbourne long-termer – the Holden Trax LTZ.
The Trax hit the market in late 2013 and was smack-dab in the middle of category sales results for 2014.
The top-spec LTZ is priced from $28,490 and includes a six-speed automatic transmission, 18-inch wheels, heated front seats, foglights and Holden’s seven-inch MyLink touch screen.
The standard Trax features a 103kW / 175Nm 1.8-litre petrol engine, but we have chosen the optional ($1500) 103kW / 200Nm 1.4-litre turbo petrol motor. The turbo has a claimed combined fuel consumption of 6.9L/100km – an improvement over the 1.8’s 7.6L/100km.
Also additional was our CarAdvice friendly selection of Orange Rock metallic paint ($550).
Built in South Korea, the Trax has performed better than Holden initially expected and is a surprisingly fun and capable little package.
But that was 2014 – this year, there are a range of new competitors in the category that have lifted the bar somewhat. The Honda HR-V and Mazda CX-3 show plenty of capability to push sales even higher – so where will that leave ‘older’ models like the Trax?
Holden are already throwing more value at the car – new vehicles include a glass sunroof with the 1.4-turbo engine option. And between you and me – no one pays retail on one of these.
While the Trax is under our care, we will pair it up with any new-comers to the compact category that come through the garage, and we’ll keep an eye on sales incentives that Holden provide.
In keeping with the likely use of these cars, ‘Traxy’ (yes, it has already been given a name) will largely be kept on urban duty – which will help us provide a more realistic around town fuel consumption figure.
We’ll cover off some of the features and functions – hill descent control on a front-wheel drive hatchback? Okay…
Plus we will make sure we showcase the day-to-day adventures the plucky little Holden gets itself into.
As always with our long term reviews, please let us know if you have any queries or requests you would like us to cover in more detail.
ODO at collection – 9,078km
(fuel and trip and computers were reset upon collection)
Click the Photos tab for more images by Tom Fraser.