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The Automobile Protection Association and Protégez-Vous

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Mathieu St-Pierre
The release of its 2010 new and used car ratings
This year and for the last 22, the Automobile Protection Association (APA) and Protégez-Vous (PV) have released their always anticipated new and used car annual guide. As with the other 21 printed editions, as a reader and wise consumer, you'll find a plethora of info on the vehicle that might be tickling your fancy especially if you're in market for a used automobile.

Photo: Protégez-Vous

In this department, no one comes close to what the APA knows as it has amassed mountains of data over the last four decades of its existence. If you are a regular purchaser of the magazine, you know that their “best picks” lists are invaluable tools to help you make an enlightened decision. And so, you probably also know that Toyota has long held numerous spots on the coveted list but that has changed, somewhat.

In a nutshell, Mr. George Iny, President of the APA, said that although a threesome of Toyotas remain amongst the top picks (Yaris, Prius and RAV4. The others were removed because of the recall campaigns), it's not the cars that should concern buyers of the product, but the company's behavior. If we take into consideration that the APA had already received a handful of complaints of unintended acceleration by early 2008, we can surely assume that Toyota had received considerably more by the same time period.

According to Mr. Iny, the old way of doing business (don't ask, don't tell) did work for a while but like all good pressurized systems, they eventually burst at the seams and that explains why Toyota is all over the news.

The debate now rests with Toyota and, more specifically, with Transport Canada, their mandate and resources.

On another note, Mr. Iny stated that 2010 is a transition year as far as fuel consumption is concerned. Many of today's new cars are more fuel efficient as well as more powerful. This and the fact that the number of hybrids and up-coming EVs continues to increase, the Canadian fleet of cars will eventually get leaner and cleaner. This is good news and I agree.

Photo: Mathieu St-Pierre/
Mathieu St-Pierre
Mathieu St-Pierre
Automotive expert