Need suggestions on Diesel Hatchback, Bought Punto


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Folks,

Been managing with a bike since the past couple of years, but time's come for me to get myself a car. My monthly running will be around 1500-1800 kms and therefore I have decided to go in for a Diesel. Moreover, maximum budget that I can go upto will be 6L. Looks like I will have to get a hatchback for this price.

Here's something about myself: I have never owned a car in my life and this will be my first. However, I have been a biker for god knows how many years now and hopefully I will adjust myself to a four wheeler pretty soon.

The following are the key points that I am looking in a car:
1. VFM with power windows, decent interiors etc hopefully with the car sustaining for the next 5-6 years.
2. I really like a looker in a car, so this point comes in second.
3. I spend around 250 bucks on autos for office commute daily. So you can understand what a ride I am having for that distance!!! so I am looking at good quality ride.
4. Decent Fuel Economy
5. Being a first time owner, decent after sales service.
6. Resale value - Does this really count if I am planning to keep the car for the next 5-6 years? I feel this is not at all critical. Hopefully, after this period I am able to sell the car for a decent amount.
7. Rear seating is not critical since people travelling will be 2 (my gf and I) and sometimes maybe a total of 4, but this is going to be a rarity.
8. Boot space - good thing to have but not necessary.

Here's what I did:

Did a complete search of the available cars for this price. Finally, found that I have options between Swift VDi, Ritz VDi and Fiat Punto 1.3 Dynamic.

Here's my take on each of these cars:

Swift VDi:
1. This car sells and how! Dealers here in Mumbai still do not give any discounts after so many years [shock]. - Advantage
2. Heard good things about Maruti After sales service - Advantage
3. This car is really common here in Mumbai. Everybody seems to have bought this car. Moreover, just my preference, I have not necessarily liked the look of this car - meaning sometimes I just like it, but most of the times I do not. Disadvantage

Ritz VDi
1. Bad rear end of the car. Looks like Maruti fired the designers halfway while this was being designed. Did not like this at all Disadvantage.
2. 10 K discounts mentioned in the Times of India today. The dealer also promised this even before the ad was out - Advantage. New car, makes me wonder why discounts so soon in its life cycle.
3. Out of all the 3, I felt this had the best interiors and best rear seating capacity. If my folks were here with me in Mumbai, would certainly have made sense for a family of 4 - Advantage.

Fiat Punto Dynamic 1.3
1. I just loved the looks of this car. This is one of those cars that's made me say "wow" the first time I have looked at it - Advantage
2. Interiors are just about ok, I mean compared to Swift a little better according to me, but no way near Ritz - Can live with this
3. Rear space is just about ok, maybe better than Swift. I am 5'11" and I was able to fit in easily and did not find this a constraint - Certainly not going to kill me.
4. when I drove this car, I have to say this: My boss has a Toyota Corolla. I felt this car had better driveability than the Corolla. Big Advantage
5. Ride is superb in this car. Advantage
6. Hearsay: After sales service ****s as far as Fiat is concerned. Is this true here in Mumbai? Disadvantage

Guys, now am really confused. Understand that whatever I have put above is my sum total experience with cars for a period of 2 months maximum. As I mentioned before, do not have much experience with cars.

Here are my queries:
1. The key points that I have put above are what I just felt I would want in a car. Are these enough or should I consider in more factors?
2. If I am keeping a car for such a long period, what other factors should I consider?
3. What are your thoughts on the above mentioned 3 cars? I presume these are the only ones I can consider with a budget that I have.

Confusing, frustrating - that's what I am feeling right now [frustration]. What do you guys think?

PS: Sorry for such a long post, I hope you understand [:)]. But hopefully, whatever I decide on with your help, I want to keep updating this thread so that this will be of use for somebody looking for similar information.
 
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swift is realy good i would give my vote to swift.yes but it is getting too much common.ritz is very good as i heard but never tried yet and not want to.for me the looks ****s and specially the interiors[frustration]

Please dont go for punto you wont get that much quality level and peace of mind, Performance is not great but i think wait for i 10 diesel, Yes its coming soon.
 
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Thread Starter #3
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Oh.. thats news to me!! i10 diesel. Any idea when this is expected?

Well, its heart ruling the head thingy as far as Punto is concerned. Have you test driven the Punto? Why do you feel that quality would not be upto the mark? If you can share your experience, it would certainly help.
 

vijay

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vroom, so from what you shortlisted yes all three are good cars in their segments and swift still rules the charts even being for so long in market.
ritz, good interiors and quality as well compared to swift, nice gear shift and comes with same DDiS engine but tuned with EuroIV norms, rear looks are subjective and doesnt appeal to many, neither to me.
Punto, another launch from Fiat india after linea for us, same engine from fiat which has done wonders for Maruti Swift and doing duty on Indica Vista as well.Steering weights perfectly with superb suspention setup specially for indian conditions but lower end grunt and initial pickup doesnt make you enjoy the motor the way you do with swift as well as vista.Once you cross 2500rpm, this motor starts its magic, but again quality is an issue and parts falling off have been observed by many owners.Features provided along this car are best in this segment with the pricing on offer.Tata motors have the bad record for poor ASS, but fiat india is making hard time to give best services for fiat customers but Tata ASS doesnt asspire many.
As you said you are buying first car and that to be diesel one then my suggestion would be to go for maruti products, either of the one which suits your needs along with looks.My vote would be for swift, it still looks best then ritz to me, superb engine tuning, superb FE and good ASS from maruti.,CHEERS!!
 
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Okay !
Very detailed writing on your requirements which makes easy for me to draft the bottom line of each cars!




On my own experience my vote goes for Ritz & Swift!

If you need more refined engine (KB12) & comfort Go for Ritz.

Want the best car in segment with less Rear space Go for Swift.


Pick between these cars & you will not regret for ever :-)
 
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Thanks Vijay and Zinam.
One of the (key) points that I have mentioned is the looks of the car. Personally, I am finding it really difficult to like both Swift and Ritz in this department and my vote goes to Punto for this.
So now, its actually 0 to Punto and all other votes to either the Swift/Ritz, except that Vijay is the only one who feels that this is a good car for this price. Is A.S.S the only problem with this car? Vijay, I know you have mentioned initial pick-up not very exciting in the Punto, but leaving that aside and A.S.S, is this worth a buy?
 
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Yes Vroom ! Punto is just worth the buy.

But beware of the poor A.S.S, I hate this as the only aspect from FIAT.

I am expecting FIAT to launch its own showroom & Service centres very soon!
 
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Zinam, I have heard things about FIAT's A.S.S. But you wouldn't believe it, but Fiat - Tata showrooms are the only ones who have been regularly following up about my decision. Wasan Motors, Mumbai is one guy who promised me a tour of their service center after I raised concerns about their service and availability of spares.
I still have 2-3 weeks to go and that's the maximum I will wait.
Hopefully, more members here will contribute to this thread, esp members who have owned a Fiat/Maruti and I can make that one final decision [:)]
 

350Z

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Hi Vroom!

First of All, I must say that you have done a very detailed search which is really very impressive for a First time car buyer.

Here are my queries:
1. The key points that I have put above are what I just felt I would want in a car. Are these enough or should I consider in more factors?
2. If I am keeping a car for such a long period, what other factors should I consider?
1. You have covered most of the major points, So theres not left.
2. If you are going to keep the car for long period then you should consider the main facotrs such as :

- How is the After Sales Service of Carmaker?
- Will the spares be easily available incase the car gets discontinued?
- How costly the spares are?
- How is the re-sale value of the car?

Also, Have a look at long/short term ownership & TD reports & Car Buying queries in our old forum.



For the budget of Rs. 6 lacs, You may get a diesel sedan, But its not really advisable to go for it considering that you are a first time car buyer.

So, let's have a look ar the hatches in your budget ;


1) FIAT Grande Punto



::TAI Review Here::

Model & Price :
  • 1.3 MJD Active [Rs. 5.67 lacs]
  • 1.3 MJD Dynamic [Rs. 6.02 lacs]
  • 1.3 MJD Emotion [Rs.6.48 lacs]
2) FIAT Palio Stile

Model & Price :
  • 1.3 SD MJD [Rs. 5.05lacs]
  • 1.3 SDE MJD [Rs. 5.27 lacs]
  • 1.3 SDX MJD [Rs. 5.49 lacs]

3) Maruti Suzuki Swift

Model & Price :
  • LDi [Rs. 5.38 lacs]
  • VDi [Rs. 5.76 lacs]

4) Maruti Suzuki Ritz

Model & Price :
  • LDi [Rs. 5.35 lacs]
  • VDi [Rs. 5.74 lacs]
  • ZDi [Rs. 5.94 lacs]

5) Skoda Fabia

Model & Price:
  • 1.4 TDi Active [Rs. 6.30 lacs]

6) Tata Indica Vista

Model & Price :
  • TDi Terra [Rs. 4.35 lacs]
  • TDi Aqua [Rs.4.58lacs]
  • Quadra Aqua [Rs. 5.19 lacs]
  • Qudra Aura [Rs. 5.52 lacs]
Please note that the serial number has to do nothing with the ranking of cars.


In all the above mentioned cars, They have their own advantages and dis-advantages and it could be a really difficult task to pick one from them.

Personally speaking, I would suggest you to check out the FIAT Grande Punto and Maruti Ritz, Even swift is a good contender but like you, My eyes are also fed up seeing it so much on roads and it looks quite boring in front of Punto and the Smart looking Ritz.

Punto is quite a VFM package and worth considering, Many people have doubts regarding its After Sales service but what I feel is that after Tata Fiat joint venture, It has improved alot and Fiat is more serious about its future in India.

On the other hand we have Ritz which is really nice car for the city roam about and the Maruti's ASS is bonus.

So vroom, I say consider the Ritz & Punto only because the more car you get in mind, The more confusion arises.

Also, Do take a Test Drive of both of them soon, You understand your requirements better than us and the final decsion made will only be yours.


All the Best.
350Z
 
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Hey Vroom!

Just checked with few of my friends who owns a Punto!

He has a black Punto, which he got delivered before 3 weeks. Its doing a good job & he is really satisfied with his new car.

His service due is arriving shortly, I will give you more details very soon on that!
 
Thread Starter #11
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350Z,

Thanks so much for that detailed explanation. The links to the Punto review and ownership details are really helpful.

As you have mentioned, I am going to finally look at only the Grande Punto and Ritz. I also agree that there's no point considering too many cars and confusing oneself. Thanks a lot for such detailed explanation.

Zinam, thanks for finding out that information for me. I will await his 1st service report.
 
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i still strongly suggest you to not go for punto.yes it is best looking of three but it is fiat.my brother has got palio and its suspension packed up in 28k kms.just see even palio and swift has got the same engine but swift is hit and there is hardly any takers for palio diesel.go for swift diesel you will be happy.
 

vijay

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vroom, no doubt fiat has came out with two superb products linea and GP.GP has given some superb gadgets that are to be seen on any other hatchback.I suggest you to take a look at the older link vibhor has given you for TD report for GP.Being a first time owner for four wheelers and that to be a diesel one, i would like you to enjoy your ownership rather then going around the dealership for some or the other things on new car.Am not saying its a bad car to own, but overall quality of GP isnt that equal to linea which even fiat has confirmed, cause of cost cuttings.Parts falling off new vehicle is something not acceptable to me and this has been case with many people i know personally.Looks is oneof the best GP offers with superb suspention but i would still like you to go and TD cars you shortlisted, if you can try to intract with some owners at dealership and ask them the real story of GP which sometimes is a better idea to understand the product.
I own a tata indica for 4 years now, so am saying this from personal experience that tata motors are yet to learn how to deal with ASS and customer satisfaction.Most of the dealers i have came across are intrested in selling cars to you, once done they dont care what issues crop up after that, if you want a peaceful, reliable ownership make sure you keep on visiting their workshop frequently, thats what i did for two years and then switched over to private one.Else your choice.Nothing wrong with punto, but a better option for me is to stick to MSL, parts easily available, better ASS, easy to service,repair outside ASS as well.
 
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Amit, Vijay:

Event parts falling off a car or suspension packing after 28K kms is not something I would want in an old car. leave alone a new car.
To share my experience with my bikes: I read through a lot before deciding on the KB 125. But honestly, the piston noise/clatter was so much if I was trying to go on a little steep incline even when it was so new, had just done 200 kms. Running to the workshops and mentioning it to the service guys there never solved the problem. Even though I never sold the bike and its being used by my younger cousin bro now, I really don't think that problem ever got solved. I think I just got used to it.
So, I really don't want to go through that stress and strain. I intend to visit the service centers and talk to existing customers as I still have 3 weeks to go before I even book the car. Also eagerly waiting for Zinam's feedback with his friends car. Even if I have a little doubt, I think I will pack up regarding Punto and go for something else (Ritz).
But seriously guys, 6L and just 3 options [confused]; Is there something else I should consider or wait for some other car launch?
How much does an I20 Diesel cost? I am not sure if I can afford it, but if there is nothing else that I can buy for this price, may as well wait for a couple more months (say by November) and buy I20. However, to be honest, I think that price is too much for a hatchback.
The only thing I can say about Mumbai is, I see a lot of Lineas on the roads but am yet to see a Punto on the roads [shock].
Vijay, I appreciate you sharing your experience regarding Tata Indica A.S.S.

Cheers,
Vroom
 
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