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@creativebala - there was an error in calculation( converting cm into feet) due to which  I quoted  wrong height. So for the record my height is 180.5 cm to be precise!

A*engine and gearbox -  the gearbox is good but not excellent when compared to VW polo. there is some "notchiness" when engaging the 5 th gear and reverse gear . the reverse gear reminds me of the Maruti 800's gear box , a bit diffcult to engage. overall 7/10 .

 The engine vibrates when idling , but smoothens out when accelerator is pressed.In traffic due to lack of grunt at bottom end  frequent gear changes is required. slight drop in power is noted when ac is used otherwise it is ok . overall 6/10

Ride and handling - there is some firmness in the ride , but difficult tell as roads in central Delhi and south Delhi where I drive are in a good condition due to CWG  - 2010 .

some more pictures -

1. door lock and unlock button

70311657.jpg

2.central console - with space below the music player and above glove box

38807812.jpg

3.sound insulation on the bonnet - nice touch

99758757.jpg

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A Star - interiors - the interiors look modern with adequate space for small items.

I felt the glove box to be in adequate . Upfront there is two cup holders and in the rear there is  a door pocket in each rear door which doubles up as bottle holder.

a small shelf is provided below music player which is illuminated from below and  a storage box below ac controls .ALSO small shelf is provided just above the glove box. there is slim door pockets in each of the front door . plastics used in A - star is poor in certain areas and satisfactory  in other area. for instance , the top half of dashboard looks  good but the bottom half of dashboard with its blue colour looks pretty cheap. the switch gear is ok . I will say that interiors are both one  step in forwards but also one step in backwards.  the roof molding looks good but the inside  rear view mirror is flimsy and vibrates. overall 6/10

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@Mr Spock

I just love the steering of the Astar. It looks exactly like that of swift but smaller in diameter. The music system plastic is a bit tacky ,so are the switches. But overall i like the dash board. The music system is seated higher which makes the CD played easy to use.

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 In this post I will focus on comfort level, HVAC , and equipment levels

  comfort levels  - the car is quiet comfortable for two people (driver + co- passenger) but  the rear space is quiet poor which means this car is strict  no - no with friends and family . also boot space  is in league of  maruti 800 . ( it should have been upgraded to at least 180 liters). so no trips outside Delhi . the parcel shelf provided has a deep groove where you can keep small items and is much better than parcel shelf provided in swift zxi.( for comparison purposes only). the noise levels in the car is ok  but there is lot of noise coming from the tires.otherwise the engine noise is not that obstructive.( any opinion about it?)

        HVAC - the AC is good  but takes time to cool the cabin in 40  and above degree. the heater , a requirement in winter, is pretty good in doing its work and brings the car's interior  temperature to  a comfortable level in winter .IMO ,the vents are of  a good design with a good configurable element built into them( take for instance , side vents can be closed completely as sometimes I don't like cool/ hot air coming out of  it but passengers at the rear can still have AC/HEATER blowing fresh air towards them. some people may say that it is present in many cars -   the answer would be yes but not in this price band when A* was launched, but now even the new Wagon R has  it).I have noticed , with AC ON  there is slight drop in power but not that much to affect overtaking maneuver  .

    Equipment levels - IMO ,the equipment level provided is pretty good for this price band-1. A four speaker stereo with aux in port(with space for 2 more speakers in front of dashboard)

                        2. rear demister - a must for cold climates

                        3. auto down for window for Driver

                        4. lock and unlock  all door at a touch of a button from

                           Driver's seat(A must IMO if children are traveling - Absent in the new Wagon r , Chevrolet beat - a glaring omission! . please note this is for comparison purposes only - no offence meant  to wagon - r or beat owners)

                        5. 2 airbags and ABS

                         6. child safety door locks in the rear

                         7. vanity mirror

                        

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Nice car   smiley1.gif and beautiful landscape on the first page. Here it's called Suzuki Alto but it's the same car' date=' how many for this car in India? [/quote']

Well, not too many buyers as people are generally attracted by the Hyundai i10, suzuki wagonR and such.

In India, we've had 4 generations of the alto sold -

1. The 1st generation, sold here as the Maruti 800, belonged to the 1980s in EU.

2. The 2nd generation, sold here as the Zen, sold in EU in the 1990s.It was also known as the Suzuki Cervo.

3. The 3rd generation, called the Alto, dont know if it was sold in europe.

4. The 4th generation, the A-star that Mr.Spock has, which sells in Europe as you mentioned, as the Alto.

Right now, we have 3 altos selling together, even today - the Maruti 800, the Maruti Alto and the Maruti A-star.

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@guiguiswiss - the background is of  Rashtrapati bhavan in New Delhi -It is the president of India's home .

 The number of A* sold varies from  2500 - 3500 per month and is a popular car in New Delhi , some of them even being chauffeur driven!

The price of top end variant is 4.56 lacs or 7,794.52 euro or 9,793.81 US dollars ( on road New Delhi)

[source : autocar India July 2010 issue and xe.com]

@arkboy -A* is the is 7th generation alto and not fourth generation as you have mentioned . the 6th generation alto was never sold outside Japan.

A brief history of alto - some facts-

1st generation alto- (1979 - 1984)

was sold in India , japan  but in Europe apart from regular alto, a variant  based on alto called SC100 / cervo was sold.

2nd generation alto -(1984 - 1988)

 It was sold in India as maruti 800 but again in Europe a new  cervo model was added based on same underpinnings

3rd generation  alto - ( 1988 - 1994)

It was never sold outside Japan. The Daewoo tico is based on 3rd generation alto.

4th generation alto (1994 - 1998)

It was sold in japan ,in India as maruti zen  , in Europe  alto was sold with a new cervo model and a new variant added in 1996 called   cervo - c [in India sold  as Zen classic]

5th generation alto ( 1998 - 2004) - this model was sold in Europe till rcently and in 2008  it was replaced by 7th generation or the present alto.This model is still  sold in India and is largest selling car in India.

6th generation alto - ( 2004 - 2009) - this model was not sold outside japan and the new cervo is based on it.

7th generation alto (2009 - ) this  model is the new alto sold in Europe and In India. the Japanese model differs considerably with the model sold outside Japan.

 

1. alto - 1st generation - note :different bumpers compared to our maruti 800

800pxsuzukialto1982cret.jpg

2.2nd generation alto - note: headlamp washer

800pxsuzukialto.jpg

3.Daewoo tico

800pxdaewooticovl.jpg

4.suzuki SC100/ cervo

800pxsuzukiwhizzkid.jpg

5.6th generation alto

suzukialto6th2006front.jpg

6.7th generation - Japanese alto

800px7thgenerationsuzuk.jpg

(source: wikipedia , suzuki japan website )

 

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@guiguiswiss- the price may be similar but equipment varies, for example there are no power windows in the rear in European version but in Indian version - the top end variant like mine has four power windows.

hyundai i10 is much larger car than  A* and it is better built , but A* is a fun car to drive and at the end of the day I like a car which is fun to  drive

 A point to be noted is that A*  and i10 are  targeted at different audiences even though they are in similar price band. .

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By the way Mr.Spock,

Have you compared A-Star and i10 back to back? Is the A-star too cramped when compared to i10?

I am asking this because, I went through the i10 vs A-star comparison in autocarindia at the time of launch of A-Star. The total legroom in offer (if we add both the front and rear legrooms) was exactly similar for both the cars in comparison. Only thing is that the max front leg room for A-star was 50mm higher than i10 and hence the min rear legroom was 50mm lesser than i10

Just follow the below example:

           Max Leg room front                        Min leg room rear

Car 1(Eg: A-star)

|<-----------650mm---------------->|<-----------550mm-------------->|

Car 2 (Eg: :i10)

|<-----------600mm------------>|<---------------600mm-------------->|

The figures have nothing to do with the actual legroom in both the cars. I am just putting some assumed figures to explain. In the both examples, the total length available is 1200mm itself. However, the first car is having more travel to the front seats. Hence people get a perception that the first car is having cramped rear seats, which is not true.

I know that the boot space and width are marginally higher for i10. Still think that the leg room is exactly the same. What do you say?

carispassion2010-07-05 14:49:29

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I am not an expert at this, but I've in both A-star and i10 test drive vehicles.

Well, the figures as you say put together a different story, but my observation was that the space between the knees and front seat back was more in the i10 than the A-star. This was when I was 5'8 or 5'9, with medium build.

To add to this, the A-star feels claustrophobic in the back.

Speaking about rear-seat comfort, the i10 wins hands down.

I hope I've answered to the point.smiley1.gif

arkboypunk12010-07-05 15:37:30

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Yeh. I admit that A-Star feels claustrophobic at the rear seat.

I was asking if it could be because of the high travel for the front seats. People normally push the rear seats all the way back and then start complaining.

What I feel is if Maruti haven't given such a long travel to the front seats, people will not be able to push the seats back even if there are no passengers in rear seats.

IMO, A-Star gives an option of high travel of front seats over i10, and people are complaining about it!

carispassion2010-07-05 15:46:14

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The Actual problem with the A* is not even with the Legroom either,

trouble is mainly with its Smaller & Shorter Rear Seat's base & Tapering n Very Low Roof-line, which makes the Average sized person sitting there with the Feeling of 'Hemmed in'. 

& to address these shortcomings Suzuki, Japan have introduced their new A*-based styled New Alto, shown below with Tall-Stance & High-Roofline:

 

800px7thgenerationsuzuk.jpg

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@dr nishu -I agree with you what spoils the space is the tapering A pillar and height of the roof.  but The dashboard also plays a part in it -its  too high set  and is in your face.  

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So I understand that the Hyundai i10 is more spacious than the Alto but less fun to drive. Claustrophobia is common in the rear seat of small cas, the Fiat 500 has the same problem smiley1.gif

Indeed for 7990

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@guiguiswiss -  companies adapt their vehicles to different markets - so AC , power windows are deleted for extra safety features for European markets (like four Airbags , ESP)but in Indian Market AC is must so Ac is offered as standard feature even in low variants as standard. Also for a small car to be successful in India it has to have four doors otherwise their will be no takers for the car.

As I mentioned in my earlier post regarding damage to my car . I gave the car for repair of the running board and rear bumper today . the scratches in the door and bonnet will be repaired later as it turning out to be quiet expensive ( 3, 000/- per panel ).

Could anyone enlighten me if one takes 2 or more claim in a year how much extra premium one has to give ( in relation to a small car) when renewing insurance.

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I got my A* back 2 days ago but I am not satisfied with workmanship of  authorized service center .smiley21.gif

 Some areas in the bumper  was not painted and on bring to notice the service advisor applied touch up paint to unpainted surface .smiley11.gif

During washing , the windows of the car were kept open ( I didn't notice) , due to which some water had seeped into the car and now the ABS light comes on during driving and then  disappears - car skids on braking - HELP ME !

Today , I showed to a authorized  service center near my home ( BAGGA LINK) ,the service advisor ,  asked me why have you brought the car here? go and show it to service center of dealer

from whom you  have purchased the car .

This so called " renowned" Maruti  service I get .smiley25.gif

 

 

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I got my A* back 2 days ago but I am not satisfied with workmanship of  authorized service center .smiley21.gif

 

 - car skids on braking - HELP ME !

Today ' date=' I showed to a authorized  service center near my home ( BAGGA LINK) ,the service advisor ,  asked me why have you brought the car here?  

[/quote']

Oh! Thats sad. Although bumper is not a part to worry but damages the looks alright. I always find that labor charge in Maruti Service is too high and they always ask for "bakseesh" in the end. Only thing good is that, they do the work in time, and spares are cheap. The rest of maruti service process -I hate (but better than others )

You should have been careful, keep your car under the sun for a day with windows rolled down a bit. Will help the wet mattress to evaporate and become dry. use a hot hair drier blower if possible. Pump your brakes while driving slowly in a parking lot to remove water from the brakes. Pump it many times to improve braking. Do not use handbrake for a day or two.

Yes, the so called Authorized service centre people are correct. Not all authorized centres are big enough and they do not have all equipments to test your ABS or so. The dealer service centres have such materials and this is rather a good advice I would say. Maruti Service centers are ranked according to their service capacities. All are authorized but not all are equally equipped.

sb-alto2010-07-15 19:06:24

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@sb alto- 1.I agree that the labour is expensive but since it is  which is exclusive of VAT - so total cost is very high .

                2.the car was washed by the authorised service centre (before delivery of the car , and not by me.)the carpet and instrument panel were dry but I noticed some water in the base of the gear shifter( I removed  the   water with cloth)  and after the car was delivered , few km later ABS light came on.

Regarding the service center - Bagga link - It is authorized dealer service station belonging to category A MASS( Free , paid service and Major repairs)

"what the service advisor meant was Since You have not bought the Vehicle from us why should we repair Your car?Go and show your car to dealer from where you have bought the car."

             3.Anyways ,now the light is gone but front end of the car makes skidding noise when braked hard.

Mr. Spock2010-07-16 11:50:07

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Hello sir very nice reviewsmiley32.gif. I dont think even maruti could have written it any better.

Sir i am contemplating buying an A-star. Can u please tell me about the following:

mileage that you are getting in the city as well on the highway? how much has it changed since purchase?

another thing i've heard is that rear visibility is bad? how bad is it?

any problem with the a/c? headlights?

i found the engine noisy, did that change after 1st service?

any problem with the brakes? how is braking above 100kmph.

does the rear seat come in 60:40 split?

 

Sir i usually drive long distances on the highway. Initially planned on the alto K10, but the seats in K10 are bad. A-star has the best seats in its class without a doubt.

Sir my budget is 4 lacs which suits the K10(3.77 lacs), but now A-star is for 4.10 lacs. But still not sure. I plan to sell it in 3 years. what do you suggestsmiley1.gif

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@gegonbones - sorry I could not reply bit early  - I am busy these days .

I will reply in points so its bit easy for you-

   1. the mileage is 11km/litre with ac ( city only ) , stop and go traffic it may reduce to 7-8 km/lit - this may be due to my driving style and car has covered just 5,000 kms in 1 year . I have not taken the car in highways so can't comment on highway mileage

    2.The new additions include height adjustable seats and ABS in vxi and automatic versions .

 3.brakes are OK but locks easily in lxi version so go for vxi or zxi version(most preffered) - above 100kms car braking is comparable to other cars in its class -

  the cost - don't worry ask for generous discount - I got it for 4.24 OTR Delhi a year back

 3. rear visibilty is quiet  poor - requires practice to park in tight spaces

 4. A/c i will rate 3/5 but heater I will rate 5/5 .

 headlights - I can't comment on that .

 5.No 60:40 seats

 6. Yes engine is noisy inside but not that intrusive .No change after 1st service I had barely covered 500kms before my first service.

 7.the front seats are better than alto but rear space is tight but better than  alto  

 8. handling is good but ride over broken  roads is poor .

 9. its better put together than even swift and is much sturdy

 Summary :If you are planning to sell in 3 years then there is no use buying it as you may lose money due to its high depreciation . You may get better value if you purchase alto k10 - but I would suggest You should go for this car its better value than alto k10 if you don't my mind its depreciation , besides you get stereo , abs which makes up for price difference between the two model - the car will last lot longer .

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Mileage = 11 km/l ???

I have Alto K10, giving me 20 kmpl. Covered 3500 km.

Rear of A-Star is crammier than AltoK10 although the front space is almost equal.

Alto K10 looks more spacious from inside as its dashboard is lowly placed providing full visibility on the front whereas A-Star has a high placed dashboard which depreciates the visibility.

Rear visibility of Alto is exceptionally better than A-Star

Heaters of all the cars are 5/5. Nothing surprising.

The 9th point made me laugh. Invalid point.

The Speedo/Tacho of the Alto Vxi is much sexier than A-Star (mentioning this because as quoted -- 3.77 lakhs, Alto Vxi is in picture).

Driftydriftpunk2010-09-19 12:40:04

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