Maruti Swift TD
A white ZDi with 7k kms on the odometer and in average condition.
I would not make this a long review, rather I will post brief and straight-forward points about the car. Exterior (8 out of 10):
- Good design. Not timeless as of the Polo, but a neatly scupted package overall.
- Alloy wheels look nice. Among the best OEM
designs. Tyre size also adequate for Indian roads. Tyre brand - MRF.
- Sloping roof looks nice but has a bad effect on the rear seat headroom.
- The shoulder room is restricted because of the sporty design, in which the windows are kept smaller and roof is also narrower to maintain the wraparound design. Similar to the XUV5oo.
- Rear bumper does not protrude much and the boot lid might get damaged in parking spots.
- FM Antenna placed on the roof looks nice. SA said that it can be removed by rotating in anticlockwise direction.
- Washer jets at the front are hidden from view. Rear washer jet is positioned on the third brake lamp, looks nice.
- Paint quality was good and the panel gaps were consistent at most places. Body parts were fairly solid, except the boot lid and the integrated spoiler. Interior (7 out of 10):
- A great waterfall design in black, complimented with adequate silver and chrome touches.
- Design felt better than the Polo, though quality was lacking. Part quality was average but the way they were put together was fine.
- MID and Instrument cluster are a blessing for the driver. Dials look classy and the MID shows instant FE, average FE, outside temperature and DTE also. Temperature guage is also present.
- Start/Stop button was really convenient. The HU looked really good on the dashboard. I was not able to test the HU or the steering mounted controls as the HU was not working (powering up). It powers 4 speakers and 2 tweeters. Tweeter placement is nice and neat.
- Automatic A/C chills the cabin fast. Although the weather was good today, I decided to check the A/C effectiveness at Auto mode and it performed well. Blower noise was also okay.
- The knobs and buttons are of good quality, except the ORVM adjustment knob, which didn't seem solid. It worked nice though. Rear wiper can be operated from the edge of the wiper knob. Fog lamps, headlight levelling and alarm button was placed on the right corner.
- Storage space was limited. All door pockets get bottle holders but the area below the handbrake could have been utilised. Glovebox size is also average. Space below the Auto A/C controls is very useful.
- The A/C vents are the corners can be closed but some air escapes through anyway. A cup holder is provided below the left corner A/C vent. Opens in a nice progressive manner and decent size also.
- The grab handles close in a progressive manner. Theater dimming cabin lamp is also nice. Driver sunvisor gets ticket holder, passenger one gets vanity mirror.
- Parcel tray was provided, with 3 kg load limit. Rear passengers would feel claustrophobic as the windows are smaller and rear door pads are also bland. Chrome door handles (inside) look and feel rich.
- Boot compartment has a small light. Boot can be opened from outside without the key, by pressing a hidden button between the license plate lights.
- Seat height adjustment has limited range. Fore and aft adjustment is good but space at the front comes at the cost of space at rear. Steering is tilt adjustable and goes very low, no adjustment for reach. Seat belts are height adjustable. All neck restraints are height adjustable.
- Seat compound was neither too firm nor too soft. Perfect balance, I would say. Seat was fabric.
- Front seats had good support. Rear seats lacked under thigh support and the backrest was too upright.
- There were a lot of rattles from the boot area. I know TD cars are driven hard but there was some suspension noise also. Wondering about this aspect of Swift. Space (5 out of 10):
- Boot space was really less. Spare wheel was an alloy.
- Rear space can be best termed as average, that too when the front space is really tight.
- Front seats have good range of adjustment.
- Headroom was okay at the front but strictly average at the rear, because of the sloping roof. Shoulder room was limited at the rear, 3 passengers would be a tight fit for sure.
- Space was nothing as compared to my Liva. Drive (8 out of 10):
- Diesel engine was punchy. The noise of the turbo spooling up was audible in the cabin and very addicting.
- There was a surge of power after ~2200 RPM (and even ~2000 RPM) and the surge faded of after ~3500 RPM.
- Gear level was placed perfectly. Clutch was light, as compared to diesel standards. Brakes were not sharp initially but the bite was good once the pedal was pressed 1/3rd. Gearing was nice. 1st, 3rd and 4th gears were short and the 2nd and 5th gearing was tall. 2nd gear was the most usable in the city and achieving 60 kmph was easy in that gear.
- Steering was light at city speeds and weighed up a bit at highway speeds. But, a firm hand is needed on the highways at triple digit speeds.
- Handling was excellent. High speed corners were easy. Tyres had adequate grip and a fair amount understeer was there, though controllable and predicted. Dynamics are really good. The lack of feedback from the steering spoiled the experience.
- Turbo lag was irritating during corners and overtaking required a downshift. Once in the power band, the experience was great though.
- Engine has good characteristics. NVH was okay, wind noise was controlled though traffic noise filters in badly. Engine noise was very well controlled and sporty once in the power band.
- During a really tight corner, I had to engage the handbrake to help the rear slide out a bit. A great feeling, totally predictable handling. There were 3 beeps as long as the handbrake was engaged.
- The ride was firm in the city and felt really good on the highway. Lateral movement at the back was very well controlled. Ride in the bumpy city roads was uncomfortable though.
- Ergonomics were spot-on for the driver. The passengers can feel the tug from the engine followed by a mild yet long pull once the turbo spools up.
That was it!
The car had the feel-good factor only when it comes to the driver-orientedness. For practical use, the limited space and comfort were a deterring factor.
The Zdi is being offered at Rs. 797207, after 15k cash discount and other personal level negotiations. No freebies are being offered, though I will manage some after a bit of haggling. The Zdi is under my budget and can be a tough competitor in my list. This, being the top variant, comes with airbags, ABS
and BA. The car can be delivered in the next week itself, any colour.
No reply from Fiat yet. I will call Hyundai and Tata for their TD cars, and will do the TD tommorow.