MODS : Please update the title to 10500 KM Update.
Sorry for the delayed update , but this one is also going to be a longer one.
January 8th 2012 ODO was showing 2500 KM when I started a long voyage Mumbai >> Nashik >> Akola >> Nagpur >> Akola >> Nashik >> Mahabaleshwar >> Mumbai.
Total Distance : 2725 KM
Average Consumption : 18.6 kmpl
This trip was a great one as it was my first trip in my new PUNTO and also will one of the longest trip in my life. The Nashik - Dhule express highway and Amravati - Nagpur express highway are the gem of the road to drive. I touched 150 KMPH speed on the road with 5 adults and 1 kid in the car. Whole journey AC was on, but not to cool the inside of the car but to keep it warm at 25-25 degreee because the temp outside was 7-8 degree.
Journey was smoooth apart from one place that I visited. The temple of Mahalaxmi goddess. The road to the temple was the single lane road (its just single lane) and road was elongated from middle and misjudged the speed at which I should have driven and got hit underbody very hard and thats when a squeaking sound started coming from my front suspensions. Then on every bumper I came across underbody got scratched and with it a scratch on my heart as well. Next day morning I left from Akola to Nagpur and again the underbody started scratching again on the smallest of the bumper and then somehow it clicked to me and stopped at one the fuel pump and checked the air pressure on the front tyre and to my doubt air pressure in right front tyre was only 24 :-O. So filled the required air in tyre and journey started again and then never had problem about the same in entire trip. But the squeaking sound from the suspensions was still there.
After coming back from trip, the PUNTO went for her first service. In first service I mentioned about squeaking sound, rubber line (I don’t know what it called) came out from top the PUNTO and some scratching sound when I close the front driver side window. I forgot to mention about the rattling sounds from rear and front left window.
I went to take the delivery in evening and I was informed that the right window motor is not available now so will be fixed when it is in stock (Typical TASS problem). Rubber they said is fixed but when I went to take delivery of car the rubber was as it. On this SE said this will be again fixed when I come again for window motor. So I happily took the delivery of the car all was good no squeaking sound nothing. In evening I went to some mall with wifey and to my surprise I heard a squeaking sound from suspensions as I went over a small bumper in the mall parking and my anger had no limit. After few days when motor arrived at service centre they called me and I went there with PUNTO and explained everything again and also complained about the rattling. That day evening I went for delivery. Everything was done as per them, So I happily took the delivery again and went home. But next day itself I heard squeaking sound again, windows were rattling even more than what it was before going to service centre. After 2 days as usual I got call from service centre asking me if everything is alright and I said nothing is alright. They asked me to come again and requested me not to give any feedback to FIAT people. I received a call from FIAT and I said I cannot give feedback as my work is still pending. Still they asked what would I rate and I said 0 (A big zero) in all aspects. Immediately after 5 minutes I received a call from service centre asking me why I have given 0 and they said that they will fix my issues.
So here comes another day, I gave my PUNTO again for service to resolve squeaking and rattling sound. SE told me that please keep car for 2 days I myself do thorough test of car before giving delivery. So next day delivery time was 4 PM and I dint receive any call from Service centre. So I called them at 4.30 and to my surprise the SE who was looking after my car was on leave on that day and no one there knew that my car is to be delivered that day. He asked me to call again on 6.30. I called and he asked me to call again on 7.30. I called and this time, security guard picked up the call and informed me that everyone have already left for the day and asked me to call other day. With bulk of anger in myself, I rushed to service centre. There many people available there, so I felt bit relieved. So my car was ready and I asked them who tested my car that everything have been fixed properly and they had no answer. So I myself with one of the SE went for test drive. I started car and try to drive car out of service centre and there was a bump at the door of the service centre. As I passed the bump, I heard squeaking sound and my anger had no limits. Rattling sound was fixed. When I said to people there that squeaking sound is still there, one of the senior SE said that the sound is normal and behavior of the spring. It is because of the tension and pressure on the spring. I replied don’t try to teach me physics and if this is the case then what were you trying to fix from last 3 times and why suddenly after 3000 KM the sound started coming. And if it is normal behavior then the sound should come for all PUNTO. I left from there as it is and when I again received a call from FIAT I gave them really bad rating, following which received call from service centre asking me to come there for the last time as I already made up my mind to change service centre.
So one other day, took my PUNTO to service centre. Complaints were squeaking sound from suspensions, rattling in window and rear seats generated again and this time the radiator fan noise was huge whenever I start AC. So they allotted me Technical expert who took a test drive of my car to identify the issues. When I mentioned to him about radiator fan, his answer was this is normal behavior. And I was shocked to his reply. I said the noise was not there when I bought the car, noise was not there till last week and how come it became a normal behavior suddenly. When I explained him about squeaking noise, he tried to smart with me saying that’s the scratching noise from underbody metal with bump and tried to persuade me to go for new GC increase kit provided by FIAT. I said no to that and explained him the difference between squeaking and scratching. Then they took my complaint and took my car for 2 days. When I went for delivery, everything looked good. Rattling issues resolved and till date there is none (good job). They have changed the bushes on the front suspensions and will change the frame as well (I have no idea what this means) and they will change the radiator fan as well. Frame and radiator fan was out of stock as usual and unfortunately I have to make one more trip to service centre. I think so by the time I will reach 15000 KM and have to visit service centre for second free service.
Despite of all this problems I still love my PUNTO, I love her for what she have and don’t think about what’s missing
. When I bought PUNTO I made my mind at that time only that I might have to deal with bad TASS, but this was worse. Ha ha ha.. Few good things:
Not so good things:
- Wifey always wave her hand on dash board and says we have bought a best car.
- When we buy another car after few years, we will again buy PUNTO or any FIAT car. :-)
- We are thinking about getting settled down abroad sometime in future and in the middle of this discussion, wifey asked what will happen to our PUNTO here, can we ship it with us or else we will again buy PUNTO wherever we go. :-P
- Day before yesterday I drove PUNTO bit rashly to come out of traffic and hit underbody metal really hard to something on road, on this wifey said “aisa kyu chalaya car, dekh abhi lag gaya na PUNTO ko”, (why did you drive this way, see now the underbody got hit ) and while saying this 2 drops of tear came out of her eyes and I felt very sorry for her and PUNTO both. :-(
- I am getting decent average of about 16 in city traffic where I daily travel between Kandivali and Powai. On Highway I never got above 20, may be because I always had more than 4 people in my car and i dirve abvoe 100 only.
TASS is the only bad thing that happened to me after buying PUNTO. :-) My experience of driving PUNTO for 10500 KM:
In all 10500 km I had one big trip mentioned above and many small trips to Gujarat and Nashik and other parts of Maharashtra. After every trip I never felt tired because of excess driving. Always I want to drive more and more. Car Is always rock solid on the highways may it be 2 people in car or may it be 6 adult and 1 kid in the car (yes you read it right 6 adult and 1 kid). I enjoy every bit of my PUNTO. Mods I would like to apply:
I will upload the pics of my PUNTO later.
- I want to attach a spoiler to PUNTO , GT wings is what I am looking for. But I am not sure if my wife will allow me to do so.
- In second service they will change the filter, should I go for K&N filter?
- I want to do waxing of the PUNTO myself, so please suggest the a good wax to apply to PUNTO.