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Why we bought another Nano? January 5, 2016

Posted by simarp in : Cars, Review , add a comment

What, you are buying a second Nano? Are you crazy? Are you out of your mind? Is it not stretching your loyalty towards the House of Tata a bit too far? Are you replacing your old Nano with a new one? Tata Nano, really?

Yes, really! We did go in for our second Tata Nano. We had one, the original top of the line which was booked and came after almost an year of waiting. it is Gold color and has been doing almost a daily duty for the family. It runs a few kilometers every day and is largely a local errand car used by both my wife and me and our drivers. It has done just 15,000 KMs and smells new. The best part which we liked about it is ease of drive and parking. Two things which lack in a car like this are power steering and automatic transmission. I always thought that if Tata’s brought in these two features this car would be a darling. And Tata’s did that.

I saw an add for a fully loaded Nano Genx, it had a boot, tiny though, it had power steering and behold an automatic transmission. Brilliant. On top of it , it also had a music system. What else do you need in a small car which has to do local errands and also be part of your garage as a back-up car? Just nothing. Genx Nano didn’t come with Alloy Wheels, Airbags and ABS, I think we can live without these for a few years, I am sure subsequent versions or newer models would come with these three optional/essentials too.

The first time my daughter sat behind the wheels, she was cautious, not too sure of how it will behave. She was thrilled as she didn’t have to get to this clutch business and all, and within minutes, she was comfortable. This vehicle is so light and needs mastering only steering control.

My daughter is tall, getting in and out of the car is a breeze and the car is super spacious from inside. I think this is the most spacious fully automatic hatchback one can buy without burning a hole in the pocket. Yes, it has come with a state of the art music system and bluetooth connectivity.

What were my other choices? We could choose between Alto AT, WagonR AT, Celerio AT all from Maruti and I10 Grand from Hyundai. These are the only small cars which come in petrol versions and have an automatic transmission. For the features, the use and the price Nano looked like a steal. At 3.35 lakh on road it was almost 2.00 lakh less than its nearest competitor with full features.

So, if this car is so good, why others are not busying it? Yes, it is not selling well at all, the reason is brand perception, those who wish to make a statement with buying a new car feel at loss if they buy a Nano. For those who have nothing to prove Nano is a great choice.

If you really want a good car, go in for Tata Nano XTA, it is real value for money and a fun to own.

Replacing our Logan December 25, 2012

Posted by simarprit in : Cars , add a comment

We have been thinking of replacing our daily use car, Mahindra Renault Logan. it was bought in 2007 and has served us well. We are spoiled for choice and it has taken us some effort to get to our shortlist of 5. Our range was wide Rs 800,000/- to Rs 15,00,000/- and the requirement was for diesel vehicle which can do 100 KMs per day, six days a week.

Here are the eight which couldn’t make it to our final five, and why?

  1. Tata Manza ClubClass EXL – First choice, was a shock elimination for me personally. Dealership is under-equipped to sell this car, they won’t be able to maintain it. They couldn’t show us the exact variant we wanted to see and buying experience was pathetic to say the least.
  2. Tata Safari Strome – Dealership is under-equipped to sell this car and for a Rs 12,00,000/- + vehicle no steering mounted controls buttons underscore the experience. Exterior is fabulous but it can’t cover for other negatives.
  3. Hyundai Verna – Turban hits the roof while getting in and out of rear seat.
  4. Renault Scala – Turban hits the roof while getting in and out of rear seat.
  5. Rennault Fluence – Turban hits the roof while getting in and out of rear seat.
  6. Nissan Sunny – Turban hits the roof while getting in and out of rear seat.
  7. Skoda Rapid – Dealership experience was bad, doesn’t build confidence for service for 5-6 years.
  8. Toyota Altis – Value for money is not there, the car is at least Rs 200,000/- overpriced and looks are very dated.

The final five and why:

  1. Maruti Suzuki Ertiga ZDi O  – Comfort, low-cost of ownership and (lounge) flexible seating of middle row. Looks like would serve all our needs and that occasional, when more than 5  have to go together.
  2. Ford New Fiesta Titanium & Style – Most sexy looking cars within our budget. Very good engine mounting, almost no vibrations, our great experience with our Ford Fiesta bought in 2006, still running strong.
  3. VW – Vento Highline – VW, we like the facelift, buying experience was excellent, car gives a feel of a good vehicle, build quality is best in the class.
  4. Toyota Etios VXD – Dealership experience was pleasant, our own experience with  Toyota has been fascinating. Etios looks like a heavy-duty,  no-nonsense car, attractive pricing in its range.
  5. Renault Duster 110 PS RXZ – Looks good,  good experience of a Renault product, great road presence, interesting colors to choose from.

Would post here in a day or two on which one we went for and why?