Continuation from the 1st part 17th June
On 17th june I reached at Oberai motors & by that time the GM had spoken to DET Gola Ganpathi motors & told me that this so called solution is non standard method which we don't recommend but if I give approval to do so we will go ahead, I STRONGLY suggested YES since all has failed this is our last hope.
They proceeded with the cross member adjustment, 1st & 2nd time adjustment plus alignment were tested on road without me 3rd time adjustment I went along on expressway approx 30km round trip, the car indeed reduced the left pull but still its there considerably, this is when we spoke to DET again at Gola Ganpathi & he suggested front tyre to be swapped we did that again alignment checked & went for the same road 30km round trip, problem remained as it is.
As our last attempt the cross member was once again adjusted & alignment done problem at last reduced to 60-70% now, the car atleast moves to some distance straight before pulling to left & then we tested on same 30kms round trip.
I requested for a test drive of another manza, just to check if that does the same left pulling & we went to same 30 kms test drive & this test drive manza also pulls to left so it was concluded by me that THE MANZA PULLS TO LEFT period & we have been trying to fix a problem which all manza are showing, mind you I test drove 3-4 manza at urmil motors they all were drifting to left, I have spoken to other manza users who report the same problem too. Even Vista users are facing this issue with no solution.
At this point we discussed how my old Indica V2 never showed this problem where as manza on same roads is giving me hell of a time. The only difference between the 2 cars suspension is that in Indica the suspension is mounted on to the body where as in manza the body sits on the suspension, in both cases they have the similar front (MacPherson strut
) & rear fixed suspension.
By this time it was late evening we sat again with Mr. Rajgoplan to file the report to tata motors so it can be escalated right at the manufacturing & design team level. After filing the report I was assured that by tomorrow the answer will be comming so I will be updated but that did not happen as next day was Saturday.
Overall 5 attempts to fine tune the cross member & alignment gets us 70% correction now & I drove on expressway back home testing the car at various speeds, the car now is stable at least on lower speeds, earlier it was pulling to left quite fast now its still pulling but it does carry on straight to some distance (30-40mt)after that it starts pulling to left. 19th June
I spent whole Sunday again hunting the left pulling problem & possible causes & came across 2 good links, I request some knowledgeable members to read this & see if a possible solution can be found (I cant understand it much) Fixing Wheel Alignment Problems
Diagnosing Rack and Pinion Steering Problems
Sunday night I received a call that factory engineer who is in charge of car production will be coming on Monday morning from Pune. 20th june
Mr. Mayur Vyas from the factory was briefed of the entire exercise & he listened to me patiently & then asked me to go on a test drive along with CRM Tata motors Ms. Sumedha. I drove with 4 people on the same 30 kms road the car pulled happily to the left & both Tata officials acknowledged the left pulling behavior as not so normal on plain roads. We discussed the road taper to left & its effect on steering etc.
During the test drive I drove 100-120kmph & showed that the steering is having some EXTRA input from somewhere & it wobbles left / right which is causing eventually the left drift. This was my finding of Sunday's research that steering can also cause this problem. The steering should not have any other extra input accept from my hand but in my case I quite evidently showed this left/right wobbling to the tata team members.
Tata engineer updated the manza design team & consulted with them. Once back in workshop Mr. Mayur took the car for checking the alignment & the following was done.
1. My car was aligned & specifically the rear alignment was checked too against the factory values.
2. Then a new manza was checked for alignment as per the factory values both rear & front values of my car & new manza were matching so that ruled out the rear misalignment.
3. the new manza was taken a test drive it happily pulled to the left confirming that all manza pull to left. (Total 6 cars tested during this course)
The findings were reported to the manza design team in Pune & based on further suggestions a maruti desire was tested by the tata team & they reported to me that even that happily puled to the left. (no alignment checked for that car)
So a big question emerged, are all modern cars suppose to pull left even on fairly straight roads? if yes how much distance should they cover at 80kmph before they pull to the left?
We sat & discussed the finding of various test & tata team members said that they are taking this findings seriousely & would need some time before the design team can give us the answers, from their side this issues is on top priority.
Now I must say that I have never experienced tata customer service as my previous cars didn't ever bother me so much that I ever had to escalate the matter to such higher levels. I have been told in past 1 month that I might have been given an accidental car or a refurbished car, YES it might be possible but mind you that urmil motors asked me to get any car from their yard & I picked 2 cars but unfortunately they both had the same left pulling problem hence I stuck to the present car only.
Looking at the car & the under body it does not appear to me atlesat that its an accidental car, if indeed it is then its so well disguised that no one can detect it & I don't have faith on workshops to do such an exemplary coverup so my personal belief is that all manza & vista are having this problem its just that my kind of driving style has precipitated this problem to a much higher level. There are many manza owners who said that they don't have this problem I would surely like to test those cars for a trial run.
95% of my driving is on highway & expressway I drive or rather cruise at constant speeds of 100-120kmph on expressway never rev up unnecessarily hence braking is gentle too. Once in 5th gear the entire expressway is covered in that gear maintaining the speed. No wonder my car is giving 22kmpl since the day 1 I am driving at 80kmph only for testing I have done over 100kmph (at least something is good about manza)
I move out at odd times for my work 6-7am in the morning or late afternoon at 2-3pm so I am mostly getting empty roads to drive on, returning back is late in the night anytime between 9-12PM again empty roads.
In my own thinking (I might be wrong)
macpherson strut as implemented in vista & manza has inherent limitation & it seems that its the nature of this suspension to roll on to the left side, here is a parallel example for easy understanding.
Lets say I complain the ball is rolling & cant stay still, now this is the very basic nature of the ball to roll it can stay still for a while on a flat surface but due to inertia it indeed will roll to side whereas a cube in the same situation will not roll even on a fairly inclined surface.
So you see that I have been complaining about the car pulling to the left even on a stretch of road where the incline is clearly to the right yet the car was going to the left. This might be the limitation of the way the suspension has been implemented in vista & manza. In my close observation after 70% problem correction is that as the car is moving the car gets into a rhythmic shocker moments & that creates a wave form which needs some release of energy & that is released in from of EXTRA input to the steering thus causing this left pull.
Specifically the left pull since most roads are 2-5° inclined to the left.
I may be completely wrong in my analysis but surely would want to have an answer though I may not keep this car as it is "still" not so stable when fully loaded & driving at speeds over 100-120kmph, it does not inspire confidence which I need in the car.
I still will wait for few more days & want to give tata motors & its engineers a chance as they have tried their best till now to solve the problem, they were slow to respond but they finally responded & I don't see any unwillingness on their part. They acknowledged the problem & filed a joint investigation report on the matter to the higher management today asking few questions to the manza design team too.
All I can do is wish Tata motors & its engineers best of luck that they come out with a robust solution but before that they still have to find a probable cause of this left pulling.
Good Luck to all involved in this problem.