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Found 11 results

  1. KTM takes it nomenclature very seriously, which is overt with the ‘Racing Competition’ title it has bestowed on its latest offering- The RC 200. The taut silhouette wrapped in black panel fairing, exposed orange exoskeleton-trellis-frame and projector headlamps; all indicate the intent with which this bike was spawned, or rather overhauled from its naked counterpart- The Duke200. From the word go, the RC catapults forward with immense zeal instigating its rider to override their basic instincts of survival and sanity in favor of unearthing the maniac demeanor that this bike demands to be ridden. Redlining at each gear is an ecstasy thanks to swift linear power delivery and its smooth precise gearshifts. It invokes an adrenaline rush that caters to every desire a biker fantasizes in his ride. Dapper looks It’s a cynosure, no doubt! The quasi-menacing DRLs and headlamps, neatly integrated turn indicators in RVM stalks, vertical LED taillights and athletic brawn frame make it stand-apart from the crowd. Sheer power The 25.4BHP 199.5CC engine delivers enough punch to conquer the city streets as well as highways. The 6-speed gearbox is slick and its short-throws quickly gather pace for overtaking whenever required. Razor sharp handling The forte of RC200 is in the way it adorns the rider with confidence to push the limits. The beefy rear tire provides ample grip & stability. The balanced chassis, sharper steering angle, short wheelbase and clip-on handlebars with USD front forks enable cutting sharp corners. Feedback from brakes is acceptable but the presence of ABS would have been a cherry on the cake. With such a comprehensive array of amazing features and compelling package then, this bike comes out as a keeper. However, owning it & living with it is somewhat a different story. The commuter bikes are fast-selling products for a reason –Practicality and affordability. As mentioned in the preface, the RC200 is a purpose-built sports/race bike. Hence there is an obvious gap between the requirements for a comfortable stint from point A to B, and those being offered by the KTM RC200. You see, the gorgeous looks and precise handling comes at a price of slight inconvenience. The riding posture is such that the forward lean will take a toll on your back, and your palms will beg for mercy, especially in city riding. Being in the saddle for long hours will get tiring because of a stretched position and hard seat. In contrast, the pillion seat is an epiphany which artistically blends form with function. The soft vulcanized rubber appears as a cowl but actually serves to seat the pillion with relative ease (compared to riders). Also, cleaning this bike is a tedious and tricky affair. The narrow gaps between fairing and plastic, and also the components installed behind trellis frame are hard to reach. The matte black color picks up dust and scratches easily. It would be prudent to get a body-cover or park it in an area where it might be less prone to get dirty or abused. However other than the above mentioned minor hiccups, it’s a breeze to own, maintain and ride on a day-to-day basis. With perhaps a little adjustment to seat cushioning and finding a comfortable riding position with time, these concerns shall take a back-seat in wake of its splendor. The projector headlamps are more than capable of illuminating a street-light devoid road and have enough spread to light up the night. The windscreen effectively shields from windblast at high speeds. The fairing and liquid-cooling ensures that the legs don’t get barbequed from engine heat. Suspension is compliant enough to sail comfortably over small undulations in road. The torque-y engine is always eager to hurl the rider rapidly towards horizon and the massive brake disks ensure that speed is shed safely and promptly. And most of all, it’s the pride of riding a bike that is not just a machine, but a menacing vivacious buddy who is perpetually game for some crazy fun and always READY TO RACE. Ownership parameters: First Service cost: Rs. 1742 (Engine oil change, cleaning & oiling over chain, oil filter) Fuel efficiency: 28-32 kmpl <expected to improve after first service> Ownership experience: 1 month Extra expenses incurred: none
  2. The new Honda CRV is all set to hit Indian shores early 2013. Looks good and overall seems to be a nice car too. But it lacks the all important thing..a diesel engine. The current CRV hasnt been moving of the shelves in recent times and sales are next to nothing. And here comes an all new model which Im sure will be more expensive. Last I knew the CRV touch almost 30 lakhs on road Mumbai. What do you think the pricing will be now? Is it good time to launch a petrol softroader when petrol prices are going sky high? Here is Autocar Indias review of the car as well http://www.autocarindia.com/Review/326779,2013-honda-cr-v-review-test-drive.aspx
  3. Introduction Its been just over 2 months since I bought the Tata Aria. It was a tough decision since there were so many options in the market one will be spoilt for choice. I still did some research and narrowed down to six cars with Tata Aria, MS Ertiga, Toyota Innova, 2014 Mahindra Scorpio, Chevy Enjoy, Safari Storme. I expelled the Enjoy for its dated cabin and poor quality, next to go was the Storme just because it was so similar to the old safari, next in line to go was the Innova for its taxi image. I narrowed down to 3 options and then deducted the Scorpio because I already owned a 2012 Scorpio and this one was too similar. With the last 2 contender the Tata Aria seemed to be a better contender on parameter of space, practicality and goods on offer in the car. Exterior One would be amazed by looking at its gigantic proportions with a close to 5 meters of length its definitely long. From the front you see a resemblance to other Tata products with vertically slotted sharp headlamps and the smiling grill being the prominent features in the front. Move on to the side and you’re bound to notice the huge proportions of the vehicle. Although the side is pretty much plain you have some design cues such as blacked out B & C pillars and Aria decal running on the side of the car. On the rear it’s the same familiar Tata look with vertical pillar stacked tail lamps with clear lenses. I would like to mention that the panel gaps are prominent in this car although not as drastic and one will be finding these in the bonnet shut lines and the hatch shut lining in the rear, all the other places have almost no panel gaps. The car is quite high and moving in and out of the car is a bit of a task. Also the ORVM are awkwardly designed and are about a feet excess to the car's width. Interior Interior quality is decent but not upto the mark of say a Toyota Innova. One can find some panel gaps although have to mention that the fit and finish is decent and you get a faint resemblance of a range rover dashboard. You get a lot of kit with the car as seen in the pictures which include one touch power down on all windows, Leather upholstery, 3 Rows of AC with independent controls, etc. One thing that might be a sore eye are the ergonomics of the car. For example, there are almost no cubby holes in the car, the twin glove boxes are so shallow that they cant even house the cars own user manual, front passenger footwell is intruded by the 4X4 transfer box, cup holders on the center stack are practically useless as you end up spilling coffee on your gear knob. One saving grace is the size of door pockets which are big enough to have a 2 litre bottle in them and even then have enough space for a harry potter book. Also the bolstering on these seats are not the most efficient and broad frame people will have a problem fitting in them. Middle row is very comfortable with good underthigh support and a reclining backrest and 4 AC vents to keep you cool. Last row is miserable with not enough space for even 5 footer although you have 2 AC vents and enough space for nic nacks. The rear hatch door houses a dedicated subwoofer housing with bracket and boot has an amplifier housing although it’s small, this housing can also be utilized to keep small but necessary things. AC vents are one thing that are in abundance and hence you get 10 AC vents. The armrest does not come in the base model and the one here is a custom made one. Performance and Ride Quality Tata tweaked the engine to make it more refine and up the power to 150 PS and so it’s a good cruiser. The power is there when you want if you keep it in 1500 – 3000 RPM range. Although in lower RPM it showcases a turbo lag. The NVH level of the car are decent considering it to be a single mass flywheel although higher models have a very good NVH level with a dual mass flywheel. The car gives a mileage of 13 in city with AC and 17 on highways with AC and these are good enough for a car in Mumbai. It cruises in peace at about 120Kmph but feels out of place and pushed hard at over 120Kmph. The ride is very leveled with only crater sized potholes filtering into the cabin. It feels at home on highways because car is about 2.5 tonnes it sticks to the tarmac on high speeds and does not wobble. Its sometimes strange to drive of these enormous proportions with this ease. Verdict Many said that I was taking a wrong step in going for a Tata but it was a heart over mind decision and I don’t regret it, although the after sales are very poor and unpremium and regular services take a lifetime to get done let alone the change of parts and Tata is synonymous with poor reliability, but in all due respect I shall say that I will wait and see it for myself how this Tata delivers. Let’s just hope for good, Fingers Crossed.
  4. Folks as promised the Ownership Review of the Koleos. March 5, 2013 - Took delivery of a Peral White Koleos. That time it had only one fully loaded model - Automatic AWD. Car details - 2000cc, 150bhp@4000rpm 320nm@2000rpm torque Details About the Buy - Was shifting from a Skoda Laura TDI AT(2011). My dad who was going to primary use the car wanted a urban SUV more for city use and vacation use off and on. History of the Car - Renault Koleos is a car developed by renault in collaboration with Samsung Motors in Korea. Its produced at the Samsung Renault facility in Korea and also sold as a Samsung Motors QM5. However, there are quality, equipment and standard differences between the QM5 and Koleos. It also draws engine and technical part influences from the tie up with Nissan and shares a lot with the X-trail and Quanshi. The original Indian model, i.e the one available prior to the 2014 facelift was a fully imported model as a CBU. Deriving its produced as a french bound car not the QM5 bound. Note - I was against the idea of buying and using the Koleos after the Skoda for obvious reason. Cost - After discounts and deals the car cost roughly 27 lakhs on road. After Spending a lot of time with the car, I actually started liking the car and it grew on me. Till date the car as clocked 17k KMS on the ODO and done trips to Goa and Mumbai numerous times. Coming the the advantages and disadvantages Advantages/Pro's - Fully Loaded with all necessary features Cleverly designed - Mature, solid and Classy looks Rides a good wave of torque Very good cruiser Neat Sound system - BOSE powered Fantastic Ride. Can give tough competition to the likes of a X5, Q7, Q5, ML Handling - Its a master in this field, as good as a sedan. Minimum Body Roll Quality and Finish is great, not as flashy as people expect the stuff is solid and well come together Comfortable seats and enough of Space Easy going in and coming out. Ingress and Outgress is much better than the rest AC is very effective Steering weights up well and inspires confidence Disadvantages/Con's - Gear box is awfully slow and outdated Renault doesn't have the image of the 30 lakh car producer in India Misses the aggressive looks( popular demand, I'm happy with the classy looks) Some features such as hill decent control and electronic hand brake missing in the Indian version No HID lamps, only Projectors Report - Right from the day i drove the car to this day, I say, the SUV lacks the punch. It doesn't have the engine or gear box to cut through speed, go vroom through, but thats how the car is made. Its a fantastic cruiser. It takes its times to reach 3 digit speeds but handles even higher 3 digits speeds conformably while cursing. I have personally cruised at speeds over 140km/h and the car has been fantastic. No straining, no rattle, no vibrations. Renault has made a very good cruiser which is meant to be driven with a light foot but a heavy foot. You of flat down and it will disappoint very being of the living, but you drive it as light with a tap and cruise it, it will amaze you. That is really good even in the city. It manages to be calm and not seem over powered in the city. It handles the road, turns and traffic. Handling in fantastic, its a beauty to put through corners and turns. You hardly make out its a big SUV, it seems as a small toy car, which has minimal body roll. Can put a lot of sedans to shame as well. Goa and Mumbai trips were amazing in this manner, the engine will cruise and the handling makes you be able to cruise constantly. The steering weights up well and inspires the desired confidence making it even more worth the drive. Ride is another strong point, bumps, potholes, speed breakers anything and the Koleos loves soaking it up. Nothing comes through. Without being shaky. ICE is amazing as well, bose system with USB and AUX. FE is good with the AWD on auto it gives about 11 in the city and 14 on the highway. Views - The car is not for the people for want to show the world, speed or have the macho look. Its for the people who understand a car and the way it works. I agree the gear box is slow and needs a change, the 2014 one has the extra torque to cover that up but it still needs to change. On the other side, its made in such a way that you ride the torque in a linear manner not power, so the gear shifts are adequate for the torque. I would only advice the people who really know what they are buying and who know what and how a car works to buy this. Its not for the masses, its for the passionate. As i see it, its not competition to the fortuner/santa fe, its a cheap rival of the q3, x1 and volvo. From the handling to the service and to the ride, its all on the mark. I do miss the punch and power at times, but that when i realise its not a DSG and a sedan its a 2 ton SUV which is at home cruising and building speed, not punching.
  5. A quick couple of shots with the Nikon and I take the longer, easier way back down to the canyon floor. It’s the path I assume we’ll be driving on soon, so I pay attention to all the difficult spots. “It’s always good to walk a trail before you drive it, especially one as tough as this,” drawls our Texan instructor with a knowing grin. Our convoy of three is lined perfectly to go up the shallower trail I’ve just come walking down. But since we still have a couple of minutes, I decide to take a good look at this thoroughly modern version of Jeep’s old warhorse. As most of you are aware, it was this very car’s great, great granddaddy that inadvertently started the off-roader craze. Designed to traverse country roads turned to mush by battle tanks and an assortment of ‘tracked’ vehicles during World War II, this uniquely capable vehicle soon won the hearts of the men in khaki. We Indians got access to Jeeps early, being an integral part of WWII (we kept the Japanese from our border, remember), with almost every early model assembled here by Mahindra. The current Wrangler, however, has evolved quite a bit. Sure, as with any icon, Jeep has kept some of the best bits, but there’s plenty of fresh stuff here as well. And, like all cars these days, Jeep’s basic off-roader has grown in size. So just like the early, low-bonnet CJ2s (with their ‘sunken’ headlights) gave way to Jeeps like the larger CJ5 (Mahindra Thar to you and me), this new Wrangler is larger too. Both wider and longer, what also immediately strikes you is just how much higher off the ground it rides. Massive tyres, a rude 285bhp V6 motor and a six-speed manual transmission are all part of the jaw-dropping spec. The traditional bits remain too. The Wrangler still retains a super-tough body-on-frame construction, suspension, front and rear, is still by non-independent live axle (important for articulation) and in case you need extreme articulation, you can even uncouple the front anti-roll bar. Read the complete review here: http://www.autocarindia.com/Review/342204,jeep-wrangler-review-test-drive.aspx/1
  6. Autocar India's sister magazine Autocar UK drives the Volkswagen Taigun concept in Brazil, here's a review The Volkswagen Taigun concept is a compact four-seater SUV that's set to rival the likes of the Ford EcoSport and Fiat Panda Trekking. Parked up on next to the kerb in the sleepy Argentinean town of San Antonio Areco, the Taigun is put into perspective in the very surroundings it can expect to encounter when sales begin in 2016. Concept cars have a tendency to appear out of place away from the spotlights of a motor show, but apart from its vivid blue paint scheme the new entry level Volkswagen SUV looks thoroughly convincing among the cafes, shop fronts and municipal buildings that line the town’s square. It is unmistakably a Volkwagen when you're standing next to it, with clear similarities to the larger Tiguan. A wheel-at-each corner stance also gives the Taigun a heavy dose of visual confidence for something so compact – an observation that is further enforced by its 17-inch wheels, which with 205/65 tyres help to fill its substantial arches. Nothing is official just yet but signs are the new five door will see production with only subtle changes to exterior styling, a collaboration between Volkswagen’s main design studio in Wolfsburg and its Italian off-shoot Giugiaro. Read the whole review here: Autocar UK Taigun Concept review Pics source: Autocar UK
  7. Chevrolet may not have achieved much success with its original mid-size saloon for India, the Aveo, but it could have just the product to change things. The car in question is the all-new Sail, the saloon version of the Sail U-VA hatchback launched some months ago. We drove the car near General Motors’ plant in Talegaon near Pune and came away quite impressed. As can be seen, the Sail looks identical to its hatchback sibling right up to the B pillar. That means the styling is conservative, though the combination of its split grille, upswept headlamps and rising beltline look pretty neat. But while the Sail U-VA isn’t too attractive from the rear, the Sail saloon manages to look quite smart, with the nicely arced roof flowing smoothly into the neatly integrated boot section. The Sail is a proper saloon in that respect, and doesn’t have the truncated look of the sub-four-metre Maruti Swift Dzire, which will be among its chief competitors. The rear wheels, however, look a tad too small, and the rear overhang is a bit too pronounced. Styling at the rear is neat and simple, with the large triangular tail-lamps helping to distinguish it from the other mid-sizers. Boot space is pretty impressive, and what helps further is that the loading bay is well shaped and can easily accommodate two large suitcases. Sadly, the loading lip is a tad too high, the sill is slightly narrow and the rear seats don’t flip forward like they do in the hatch. Access to the Sail’s cabin is really convenient thanks to the wide-opening doors, but once inside, there’s some disappointment. The interiors are unchanged from the U-VA, so what you get is a cabin that lacks the premium look or feel of some other cars in this class. Plastic quality is only decent and the beige tones in the cabin make the Sail look a bit dull on the inside. The dashboard doesn’t look like anything out of the ordinary, although the protruding centre console is smart in its own right. What takes some getting used to are the power window switches, which are awkwardly positioned in front of the gear lever, and the small digital tachometer. The lift-type door locks are a bit old-school too, and you’re also likely to rue the absence of steering-mounted audio controls even on the top LT spec cars. Top variant Sails do get an audio system with Bluetooth audio streaming and telephony, however. Front seat comfort on the whole is good (though there’s no driver seat height adjustment or dead pedal), and visibility is nice too. Rear seat occupants will like the space on offer. There’s good knee room and headroom is also sufficient for anyone under six feet tall. What’s nice is that Chevrolet has softened the seat back cushion (a complaint on the Sail U-VA) and this has greatly enhanced comfort. As with the U-VA, the Sail comes with its fuel tank under the front seats, and this creates a natural footrest for the rear passengers – whether or not you like it is a matter of taste. This layout has also freed up some storage space under the rear seat, enough for a couple of soft bags. All in all, the Sail scores quite well in terms of space for smaller items, with a total of six bottle-holders (including two in the rear centre armrest) and a large recess just ahead of the gear lever. Like the hatchback version, the Sail is available with a 1.2-litre petrol or a 1.3-litre diesel engine. We drove the 85bhp, 1.2 Smartech-equipped Sail first and liked the engine for its top-range pep. It’s a motor that’s quite comfortable at part throttle, but is unquestionably at its best in the 4000-6000rpm band. However, the engine is quite noisy and the sound gets quite intrusive above 3000rpm. What also takes away from the experience is the snappy, long-travel clutch. The five-speed gearbox on the petrol is also not that precise and is rubbery to use. The Sail diesel proved to be more impressive. The engine is the same 1.3 Multijet used on a wide array of cars in India, and in the Sail comes with a fixed-geometry turbo to produce 77bhp. Chevrolet’s engineers have done a great job to smoothen this engine’s power delivery. There’s decent power off boost, and even when the turbo comes in at around 2000rpm, the power doesn’t come in sharply like in a Dzire. The build of power is gradual and helps make the Sail easy to drive in city conditions. The smooth-shifting gearbox and fairly well-weighted clutch only help matters. Mid-range performance is good too, though the Sail doesn’t seem to have quite as much top-end grunt as the Dzire. We liked the Sail’s steering for the minimal effort it required at parking speeds, but were quite disappointed by how disconnected it felt when we ventured onto the highway. Surprisingly, straight-line stability is also not all that good, and calls for a firm hand on the wheel at all times. The petrol car’s steering does offer a little more by way of feedback, but even then it’s not really entertaining to drive. There’s plenty of roll around corners too. But if not for handling, you’ll definitely like the Sail for its ride quality. The suspension easily absorbs the worst of our potholes, while the 175/70 R14 tyres do a nice job of smoothening out smaller imperfections. It really is one of the best riding saloons around. On the whole, the Sail come across as a pretty interesting product. It looks smart, has a spacious cabin and a useable boot, and really impressive ride quality. In diesel avatar, the Sail seems well suited to city use and promises to deliver on the fuel economy front too, with an ARAI-test figure of 22.1kpl. The petrol Sail is not bad on this front either, with a claimed fuel economy of 18.2kpl. Were the petrol motor more refined and the cabin better finished, the Sail would have been an excellent all rounder. The problem is the Sail is up against some very stiff competition from the Maruti Swift Dzire, Mahindra Verito, Toyota Etios and Tata Manza. But if Chevrolet can price the Sail between Rs 6 lakh for the base petrol model and Rs 7.5 lakh for the top-end diesel, it could just have itself its first big mid-size saloon success.
  8. It’s not everyday that you get to test a car that’s likely to be a surefire best-seller, but that’s just what this is – a first drive of Maruti’s all-new Alto 800, a car that in all probability will start life at the top of the sales charts. The new Alto is a car Maruti has poured its heart and soul into to get right. What the company wants is continuity and progress. It wants the Alto 800 to take off from where the current Alto stands today, and for that Maruti’s designers have given it an identity that is instantly recognisable. So there’s an overriding feeling of familiarity as you walk upto the car. The compact dimensions, the high-mounted headlights and the thick ‘C’ pillar at the rear of the car tell you this is an Alto instantly. But the new bits stand out as well. The new two-part grille is attractive, the high-mounted petal-shaped headlights stand out, there’s a hint of a chin spoiler, which looks sporty, and the wheel arches are mildly flared as well. Unlike the earlier car, this one is mildly tipped forward too, adding to that sporty feel. The design is familiar around the back, but here too there are fresh new details like the crystal-like tail lights and some sculpting on the hatch that adds a spicy touch. What makes the car look a bit awkward from some angles however is the massive ground clearance, something that just doesn’t sit well with the compact dimensions. The conservative Alto 800 however is likely to appeal to a wider audience than Hyundai’s overtly styled Eon, which draws polarised opinion. The new Alto 800 is built on the same wheelbase as the earlier car and plenty of suspension bits are carried over, but the structure has been heavily modified to make it stiffer. Maruti’s engineers have concentrated on keeping it light too. The roof, for example, is made of thinner steel, but has corrugations for added rigidity. The biggest change however is in the cabin. There’s an all-new and more contemporary-looking dash, with a strong ‘V’ around the centre console, and plastic quality has been improved considerably. There are plenty of silver accents in the cabin, and there’s a horizontally aligned bottle holder placed ahead of the gear lever, which is quite innovative. The inclusion of new slimmer seats means there is marginally more space for passengers but this is a car that’s hard to get comfortable in. The small front seats with their integrated headrests, for example, lack decent back support and the rear-seat back isn’t too comfortable either. Space is also only marginally better than the current car, which means it’s very cramped, especially in the rear. The moulded roof lining and fully clad pillars however improve the ambience of the cabin tremendously. There are big changes under the bonnet as well. Maruti may continue to call this 800cc motor the F8D but changes made are quite far-reaching. There are new short skirt pistons, the compression ratio of the engine has been increased and the air inlet system has been made longer. Torque as a result is 11 percent better, and you can feel it. Push down on the accelerator and the Alto 800 sets off in a much more determined manner. Responses at low engine speed have always been a strength of this motor, and now it’s better. You don’t need to rev hard to get a move on and you can upshift quite early, so overtaking is not as much a challenge as before. At very low revs, there’s a jerky throttle action, which is typical of other Maruti motors as well and hence driving in bumper-to-bumper traffic is not very smooth. Out on the highway, the improved motor feels more eager thanks to improved performance at the top end of the rev range. In fact, there’s a sporty note at higher revs and the engine doesn’t feel as thrashy as before. The gearbox too has been improved over the earlier car with a new cable type shifter. The gearshift is fairly smooth but it still doesn’t have the precision or crisp action of more contemporary competition. The ride is simply outstanding for such a small car and it copes admirably well with everything that’s thrown at it. The Alto 800’s tall springs and 80 profile tyres absorb potholes and ruts with ease but as expected, the Alto 800 is never as well settled as a bigger car. There is always a nervous bit of vertical movement when the road gets uneven, but it’s not to the point of being uncomfortable. When it comes to driving pleasure the Alto 800 really won’t excite you. There’s no excess of power for one, and the handling is pretty soggy too. The steering feels a bit vague, especially around the straight-ahead position, and the car doesn’t like to be cornered hard. But then, the kind of person who is buying this car isn’t going to really care. The new Alto 800 may not have the same modern feel as the Hyundai Eon but certainly feels a generation ahead of the previous Alto with better interiors, dynamics and performance. It’s a claimed 15 percent more efficient than the earlier car (at 22.74kpl) and it looks more contemporary too. Is that enough to keep its popularity sky-high? That will finally depend on the price. However, assuming a Rs 3.15 lakh sticker for the base, air-con-equipped version, Maruti’s latest will continue to be the best-selling car on Indian soil after it goes on sale on October 16 this year. See the full photo gallery here: http://www.autocarin...alto-800,1.aspx
  9. I bought the new Ford Figo TDCI Titanium (Diesel) on 11th Nov 2012 (Dhanteras) Been in love with it since the first drive I had in it. As requested here is the review :- I bought the new Ford Figo TDCI Titanium (Diesel) on 11th Nov 2012 (Dhanteras) Been in love with it since the first drive I had in it. Summary Pros (With respect to my requirement) - Ride Quality Leg Room (Now people can seat behind me and I don't have to push my seats in front) Superb AC - the cooling setting on dash actually works with different degrees of coolness and hotness Nice Comfy seats (drove several hours without fatigue) Adjustable steering, driver seat height and electronic ORVMs (since my Dad also drives it ) No noticeable turbo-lag Big Boot - 284L ( Big enough to fit a person in it , really !! ) Music System - Best factory fitted music system that I have heard in cars of this segment. (Will explain in detail later) Great looking alloys Grippy car even at high speeds (high speeds considering the cars in its segment ) 175/60 R14 Tyre Aerodynamic Cons No climate control (The cooling/heating dial makes up for it ) No rear power windows (cannot remember the last time I had to pull down the rear windows) Scroll down for details and pics The Almighty on new blue color dash-board Under the Hood :- The muscle 1.4L Duratorq Diesel The accelerator is very responsive, it allows you to easily switch between normal cruising and gradually accelerating drive. Or you can put your foot down and churn out all the power at once. The turbo kicks in around 2000 rpm without any noticeable lag. Some cosmetic changes:- These small changes really redefines the looks of this car in a very positive manner . The new hexagonal grill New head lamps New Fog - Lamps Blue fabric finish (same color as the original seats ) New Y-Bar alloys (Disc breaks in Front) Rear drum breaks - Tyre 175/65 R14 http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-Wh5NrghA_6o/ULJwwBpBKwI/AAAAAAAAAck/j3CoUfxzm9s/s1600/DSC01248.JPG New Tail - lights Contd....
  10. It’s a muggy, damp afternoon in Cochin and the sky is sweating bullets. Black moisture-laden clouds hang low, there’s a constant drizzle and the tarmac is a slimy mix of oil and water. Not the best conditions to unleash a 450bhp-plus rear-wheel-drive M car with only decade-old technology. Still, one afternoon’s all we have to play with, so there’s nothing to do but go for it. First impressions aren’t great. I yank the door open and am confronted by a weathered and partially sun-bleached cabin. A slightly musty odour emanates, and then I see the odo – it reads 70,000-plus kilometres. This 2004 car is no spring chicken. The engine bay is much more interesting. Opening the thermocol-light carbon-fibre bonnet is like looking into the weapons bay of an F22 Raptor – this car’s seriously packing it. There’s no pansy-looking plastic cover to spoil the view. And then spotting the long, canted-over – and frankly massive – straight-six gets me grinning like a gibbon. BMW’s garden-bench-sized S54 straight-six is so tall, the engineers had to push it over just to fit it under the hood. A large strut brace spans the suspension towers, and catching a glimpse of the twin fuel rails and individual throttle butterflies – one for each cylinder – gets me thoroughly excited. This was one of the first engines in the world to breach the 100bhp per litre mark, and this 3,246cc motor (in an unmodified state of tune) put out an eye-popping naturally aspirated 343bhp; a big deal at the time. The S54 that sits deeply nestled in the engine bay however isn’t stock or naturally-aspirated; far from it. Sitting on the right is an evil Vortech V3 supercharger, which, when perfectly tweaked or tuned, has the potential to spin 480bhp out to the rear wheels. Designed by VF Engineering, this system runs at a boost pressure of 5.5-6.0 pounds per square inch and uses an air/water intercooler for a compact construction. “This car needs a lot more work and fine tuning, but you can get a feel of just how quick it is,” says Pistol Pete, better known as Peter Chacko of Pete’s Automotive products, the company that carried out this modification in Cochin. Read the whole story here http://www.autocarin...ark-knight.aspx Modifications VF Engineering Stage 2 Supercharger kit tuned to around 480hp* Powerflex bushes Tarox front 12-pot kit Brembo rear-brake kit KW Sport suspension package Vosteiner carbon fibre bonnet, rear valance and rear spoiler Tyres 245mm(f), 285mm® *Claimed And here are the pictures
  11. Exterior I've done a sticker job, good style. Everyone admired it. Interior (Features, Space & Comfort) New convention on dashboard style, again got admiration. Huge leg space on the front & back considering a hatch. Good boot space. Only problem is dust gathered in between door panels as no weather gasket on doors. Engine Performance, Fuel Economy and Gearbox Smooth riding till 115-120 kph, after that you need to push hard and the engine is not responsive. Long 2nd & 3rd gear, got admiration again. Nice pickup, even better than few petrol cars with full load. Superb AC. Gearbox is damn good, got admiration again, very smooth and it feels like my European Vauxhall Astra. I liked it. Mileage is around 16 KMPL average with 100% AC on. Ride Quality & Handling I specially like its ride quality, The suspension is very well tuned and very absorbing in nature. I hardly care small ptoholes on the road. I drive myself and handling was never been so good. My friend bought a Swift same time, we exchange our cars some times, but I feel better in handling this Toyota. Steering feedback is awesome and very well controlled, nicely weighted. Ass Horrible, Horrible, Horrible...!! Other than the selling agent no one (servicing or body & paints) has addressed by needs accurately. They tend to ignore us and I felt myself as cheaper customer and as if I'm begging for there service. Once for a minor damage it took 16 days to repair, minor crash on hatch. Once it took more than a month to repair just a front fender and bumper (replaced it though) and after that delivered me the car without stepney which was damaged by accident. And during my second free service it took more than a week to get my car. So out of 8 months it was in the service centre for around 2 months.. Final Words I think Toyota doesn't have adequate facility to please a volume people of Liva and Etios. And every time I go there I felt as a cheap buyer, they used to ignore me always. So I would not recommend it if ASS is a concern. Areas of improvement AFTER SALE SERVICE, Better facility and timely response.