What's the Best Car for a Long-distance Commute?


Hi John, I now travel from Brisbane to Gold Coast for work and the second car is getting tired. I am wanting to replace with a comfortable highway cruiser but would also love some sporting performance for a bit of fun. I have looked at everything from older, big, luxury German cars to new hot hatches and plenty in between but am confusing myself such that I can't decide. I am also trying to work out if salary packaged novated leasing is a viable option. Are you able to give some advice on vehicle type and finance. Thanks, Nathan


The best advice I can give you is: you first need to decide the kind of car you want, and then how much you want to spend.

This eliminates a lot of the noise from the decision. (Hot hatches and old German cars are very different.)

My only comment here is that big, older German cars are a financial disaster the first time anything goes wrong. (I had a caller on 2UE at the weekend; $2400 to fix the rear vision mirrors no longer folding in on his BMW X5.)

If you are driving as much as you do on a daily basis I would be looking for a reliable economical car like a Mazda6 diesel. It complies with your highway comfort/sporty performance preference below.
More on petrol Vs diesel >>

Also, let me get the team from the brokerage to call you ASAP. They're the real experts in this pricing area and they can help you achieve the best price on any new car. They can also assist you with your novated lease enquiry.


Thanks John, I am currently running around in a 2002 Astra (185Km) - has been a good little car but getting expensive to repair.  I am looking to do something now so I am happy to speak to Ben.  

The family car is a 2008 Subaru Outback which we are happy with so my options are open - hence the second car is for me to commute to work and have a bit of fun with, I am just caught between needing sensible/practical and wanting performance .  I like Subarus (the idea of a WRX or a Liberty GT possibly a year or two old) or Ford Focus ST is appealing although probably not the most economical.  

I'll have a look at the Mazda and I'll crunch the numbers with Ben on a few different options and hopefully come up with a solution.

I haven't heard you on the radio but have enjoyed reading/watching  your reviews on the website.  Keep up the great work providing honest, unbiased and informative commentary, Nathan.