My Italian beauty is celebrating 1st month anniversary today
and recently completed 1000 kms mark! So thought it would be a good time to pen down thoughts about my association with this gorgeous so far! (A small tribute to my Red Hotty! Selection process:
I would have to admit that selecting Punto 1.3Mjd was not a tough task. My friend bought Fiesta Classic few months back and during his selection process, test drove various cars (Fabia, Jazz, Figo, Fiesta, i20) which helped me a great extent to cut short my options.
My basic criteria were – Diesel, Safety features (Top priority) – Like Solid heavy build, ABS
, Airbags, Stability at highway speeds etc. Good mid-range for highway cruising, decent space for fellow passengers, good boot space.
Cars which formed part of initial shortlist but then excluded were – Swift:
Obviously was scoring low on build quality, way too many cars on road, rear seating space and boot space! Especially the boot was a clear let down in the new Swift. As soon as my Wife saw the boot, she was like – “Do they call this as boot? :P and when she saw Dzire, Instant comment was –“What design is this! Is this a car?” (No offence meant! Honestly after seeing new Dzire, I felt Old one was much better). But I liked the interiors of the New Dezire. Maruti has done exceptionally well with regards to interior when compared to the old one. My wife helped me to a great extent in eliminating Swift & Dzire :P Any ways my personal driving experience with Swift at high speeds was neither inspiring nor gave me confidence (light steering and poor brakes). Though engine response and gear ratios are superb, sorry Maruti! Please provide better build quality to customers and come on, people cant wait for ages to drive their car! i20-
though a good car, way too expensive and was never a fan of soft suspension set up of Hyundai! Liked the space inside the car though! Fabia
– superb build quality and space, but let it go due to lack of features, 3 pot noisy engine, Skoda service! Jazz
– First driving impression was – Wow!!! Someone’s comment was so true – Space inside Jazz makes you feel like you are in a football field But due to lack of diesel option and paying 7 L + for a petrol car wasn’t feasible for me! Vista
– Though personally am fan of this car, none of my family members preferred
Finally it boiled down to Punto and Figo. Well, Figo scored well in all departments but was a huge disappointment when it came to ground clearance and no rear power windows. I was ready to live with the latter, but ground clearance issue was tough! Always I cant ride with a fear of scrapping something. Most of the highway drives for me will be with 4 adults and boot luggage! So good ground clearance was very important. So had to let go a true value for money car! Well well ! All these factors made me more inclined towards my dream of owning this true Italian beauty – Grande Punto 1.3 Mjd! Buying experience:
Approached 2 showrooms – Concorde and Aadya Motors. Aadya motors won my heart right from the word go! I ended up selecting this showroom even though it is 15 kms away from my place and Concorde is just 2 kms! The sales guy (Mr. Sudhakar) of Aadya was really initiative and helped me through out! Test drive:
Promptly, as promised the Sudhakar came with Emotion variant for the test drive. As soon as I closed the doors of the cars, I was like – This is it! The heavy build of the car gave so much confidence and peace of mind to the occupants. We were totally cut off from the outside world! (Driving experience explained later)
The car was delivered as promised on the stipulated date and time! 3 Cheers to Aadya team for keeping up their promise. Likes:
Dislikes / Issues faced:
- Stunning looks, stylish curves & SUV like stance with increased GC. Since the day Punto and Linea were launched in India, I just fell for its looks.
- Rock solid build quality, Steering feedback and heavy doors
- Amazing low end torque
- Loaded with features – Simply brilliant. Its like Car is interacting with the driver all the time!
- Brilliant ground clearance in 2012 Punto. Can drive over worst patch of roads with total peace of mind even when car is fully loaded.
- NVH levels. Many of my friends have asked – “Is this a diesel car? Especially after 40 kms / hr speed, the engine settles down into a nice rhythm!
- Space inside – front seats are absolutely fantastic! Gives great support and ample leg space for front passenger. Feels like a sedan. Rear leg space is fine, though not in the league of i20 or Vista. But offers good thigh support.
- Too much clutch play was causing inconvenience during initial few days. Later got used to.
- Slight metal screech was appearing from left front passenger door which used to irritate me while driving over bad patches of road! But Aadya people helped me to great extent in resolving this issue.
- Takes time to get used to the size of the car. Its much bigger than what it appears. It’s a positive as well as negative at times.
- Slightly longer turning radius when compared to other cars in the segment
- Position of dead pedal could have been better (like in i20)
- Took time to get adjusted to 2nd gear of punto. Initially, it was really irritating. But once a person masters the use of it, it’s a real bliss while driving in slow traffic. The car has massive low end torque.
Thanks for the patient read