November 2017 C! Issue 192 Vol. 15

It was interesting to see how testing the latest small crossovers back to back brought us into our past. We have the latest and most sought after vehicles with the newest technologies, but it felt like the tests we used to do with the small sedans over a decade and a half ago. The more things change, the more they stay the same. We all had our ideas as to who would do well in what particular test, we all had our preconceptions, we all had our own experiences with these cars. Yet once again we were surprised by which vehicle had which particular strengths. The car that could prove quickest may well be the one that only has that one redeeming factor. What felt the quickest wasn’t necessarily on top when the stopwatches came out. And the differences in braking distances were quite surprising at times.

The positive thing is that, in general, we have great cars from which to choose. These vehicles aren’t the most luxurious or the most expensive on the market, they are more the type you look at when you are starting a family. Basically the most important purchase you are making for your new life. Which again brings us back to our beginnings. C! was completely unknown when it arrived on the local Philippine newsstands, and while we were all enthusiasts (most of us anyway), we were trying to create something that would speak to everyone. Porsches as well as Kia Prides. While we loved running two 911s for our first cover, we were more interested in which car could do what in our actual price range. Now you see that all the cool (and should be considered crucial and standard) safety and traction control and braking systems that were in the sportscars two decades ago are now in what is meant to bring your most precious cargo to school every morning. So these SUV-ettes (that’s what we tried calling them back then. It didn’t take) are better than ever. Yet, in this world of supposedly cookie-cutter cars they are all individual. One isn’t on most shortlists but will put a grin on your face once you punch it. Another handles nicely but has you wondering about the decision process in other areas. For many, the Honda here would be the default choice because of the level of service and support that would be provided. And there’s the Subaru, which probably had the hardest job for the longest time. They had to move from a company known for real utility vehicles to one known for race and rally cars to one trying to go mainstream. Many people don’t get the car or the brand. Those that do, do. So in this size segment, there’s something for everyone. You’ve got your safe choice, your twisty choice, your gimme-the-gas choice…

And that’s great, because that’s what we didn’t have all those years ago. Choice.

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Editor-In-Chief / Managing Director