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View Poll Results: Which FAST hatchback would you choose?
Maruti Suzuki Baleno RS 20 3.91%
Volkswagen Polo GT TSI 275 53.71%
Fiat Abarth Punto 190 37.11%
Ford Figo 1.5L P 27 5.27%
Voters: 512. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 31st March 2017, 13:46   #76
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Default Re: Fast Hatches: Baleno RS vs Polo GT TSI vs Figo 1.5 vs Abarth Punto

Come on guys, this debate on DSG is going nowhere. Compare the cars in the poll, select your choice, mention why and move on!

A car is more than the simple sum of its parts. Put punny slippery tyres on abarth punto and even Alto K10 can beat it on circuits.

Among the cars listed, MT abarth punto would be as good/fast as the driver and GT TSI would be as good as the DSG. Keep it there, and make your choice.
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Old 31st March 2017, 16:08   #77
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Default Re: Fast Hatches: Baleno RS vs Polo GT TSI vs Figo 1.5 vs Abarth Punto

I have test driven the Ecosport 1.5 DCT (Figo DCT not available for test drive), Polo TSI and the Punto Abarth.

I currently own and drive the Vento TSI and in the past owned the Palio 1.6 GTX (probably one of the first and amongst the hottest hatches in India during its time).

Of the options available, I loved the Polo TSI and voted for it. Nothing like a turbo petrol mated with a super fast DCT. I don't drive on the track or drag race, but when I want to overtake in real life situations, the GT gets the job done almost effortlessly regardless of the speeds I am doing.

I find the DSG to be faster at shifting gears than I ever was with any other car, and the turbo is so good, I can barely even tell if there is any turbo lag.

If the object of this thread is to compare the hot hatches for our normal daily life, I think Polo TSI is hard to beat. If this thread exists to compare graphs, 0-100 times, number of seconds it take to shift gears then I assume other cars might be better.

Lastly, why do so many people insist on calling the Polo TSI DSG gearbox "unreliable"? Are there any numbers like percentage failures out there, or are people basing their opinions on perhaps a few cases reported in team-bhp over last few years coupled with information from Australia, China, etc? Can anyone here remember the number of Polo TSI DSG (not Superbs, Octavias, Lauras, etc.) failures they heard about in the last two years?
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Old 31st March 2017, 18:55   #78
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Default Fast Hatches: Baleno RS vs Polo GT TSI vs Figo 1.5 vs Abarth Punto

@ H_Dogg72

Mate, you should calm down. Even I was surprised that Chase_nt felt the GT to be a better hot hatch than the Abarth. He must have his reasons. I CURRENTLY OWN BOTH THE GT TSI AND THE ABARTH. So trust me, I cannot be biased and I love both the cars equally. Please don't come to the conclusion that all Abarth owners are saying the TSI is better. As I've said before, the Abarth is superior to the GT when it comes to dynamics. The gearbox is its weakest link and yes, the interiors aren't fancy. The TSI just cannot keep up with the abarth on open roads and twisties. Won't comment about what will happen on track since I have no experience regarding that.
That said I am not denying the fact that the TSI is a brilliant car! It's so sophisticated that it makes the other hatchbacks seem crude and last-gen in comparison. The engine is a gem and you never realise how the DSG got to D7 in the city. It is THE car to have if you want a bit of both, practicality and fun. The Abarth is not a practical car, the sales clearly reflect that. But if you're crazy enough to go for one, it will surely not disappoint (again depends on what the owner expects from the car)

Last edited by GTO : 2nd April 2017 at 23:43. Reason: Removing quoted post which has been edited
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Old 31st March 2017, 19:32   #79
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Default Re: Fast Hatches: Baleno RS vs Polo GT TSI vs Figo 1.5 vs Abarth Punto

There's a reason why Punto Abarth won't feel magical to few people.

Simply because upto 1900 rpm, it doesn't show it's true character. In city, TSI is a better option as the gearbox is doing all that work for you and you don't feel any lag whatsoever. It gives the phantom feeling that the car is fast thanks to superfast gear changes making you feel like a hero.

On highway though..when Abarth is in it's true environment, will blow away every other car out there this side of 30 lakh rupees. One word for it : Explosive.

Heck, which car costing 10-12 odd lakhs has torque steer?

My point is, Abarth is a true enthusiast's car. Sure it has an ordinary interior, lesser features and a garish decals. But when you get behind the wheels, you'll forget all that.

Abarth wants you, the driver to hone his skills to extract it's true potential. TSI though, can make even a noob feel like a F1 racer.

Depends on what you'd want from a car.

Note : People are getting really aggressive on this forum defending their cars. Realize that what works for you doesn't necessarily have to work for others. No need to confront and insult members over this. Get a good argument in the debate instead.

Last edited by The Brutailer : 31st March 2017 at 19:40.
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Old 31st March 2017, 20:31   #80
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Default Re: Fast Hatches: Baleno RS vs Polo GT TSI vs Figo 1.5 vs Abarth Punto

If it was a primary car: Baleno RS is the choice for MT, Figo for AT.
The Polo is unreliable, the Abarth Punto is too cramped. The Figo ain't too good, but you get only what you pay for.

If the car is not the primary one: Abarth Punto anyday.

Honourable mention should- Liva 1.5. It is a cracker of a hot hatch, it was just out-accelerating the SX4 I was driving. If there's a fault with the Liva, it's that it doesn't revv too high.

Pity that Honda refuse to plonk the 1.5 in the Jazz and the Brio.

Last edited by landcruiser123 : 31st March 2017 at 20:33.
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Old 31st March 2017, 20:43   #81
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Default Re: Fast Hatches: Baleno RS vs Polo GT TSI vs Figo 1.5 vs Abarth Punto

Voted for the Abarth Punto. I had taken a test drive of a few vehicles before purchasing one. The Linea tjet, polo tsi, ecosport ecoboost were the other cars I had taken for a short spin. I was looking for something powerful, with good handling and braking. The short test drives did not really allow me to test the handling part, but there was scope to take the cars to 4000 rpm in 3rd. I felt the Abarth was most powerful of the lot. Followed closely by the polo. There was a time when I was in two minds over the Abarth and polo. The polo was quite appealing with its power, gearshifts, and interior fit and finish. However, I was not at all comfortable with its ride which comprised of excessive sideways and vertical movements, something I had started to loathe over the years driving an i20 crdi regularly. The Abarth on the other hand was calm and composed over the same stretch. The steering too had way more feel. The steering , engine, suspension and brakes come together to make it an enjoyable experience. The gearbox is a little odd, but I hoped I would eventually be able to figure out a way to shift faster. I admit that the gear box is a bit of a compromise. Thus, the decision was made, and I eventually went with my heart and got the Abarth. I have driven some 4500 kms in the last 8 months and each km has been a moment to celebrate. Eagerly waiting for Sunday morning to take her out to the highway.
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Old 31st March 2017, 21:36   #82
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Default Re: Fast Hatches: Baleno RS vs Polo GT TSI vs Figo 1.5 vs Abarth Punto

Quote:
Originally Posted by H_Dogg72 View Post
I'm comparing it directly to the Abarth and Figo and Baleno. The DSG beats all of them.
You know what, I'm done. I am not talking about the future, I am talking about now. And as it now stands if one has enough skill, the basic DSG hinders performance at or close to the limit. I have already said that today's supercars are much better so no idea why you had to bother bringing an R8 up.

Just Google Polo GT tsi track test and you will have your answers as to how the DSG can hinder performance on the limit even compared to modern manuals. All the cars you have just quoted, run circles around the GT tsi on track. Overdrive or Autocar have already done the needful. I made myself pretty clear in my posts but it seems like you did not bother to understand them. Perhaps a quick Google will answer everything for you better than I can

Last edited by IshaanIan : 31st March 2017 at 21:41.
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Old 1st April 2017, 11:26   #83
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Default Re: Fast Hatches: Baleno RS vs Polo GT TSI vs Figo 1.5 vs Abarth Punto

Mod Note: Cut the debate guys and get back to the main topic. Thanks!
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Old 1st April 2017, 18:13   #84
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Default Re: Fast Hatches: Baleno RS vs Polo GT TSI vs Figo 1.5 vs Abarth Punto

Honestly, neither of these give enthusiast the performance and fun factor in their factory-spec.

The Abarth has the worst ergonomics, gearbox and clutch travel compared to any other modern hatchback. It rolls about a lot and the tyres struggle to put down the power to the road. And let's not even talk about the lack of features for the money that you're paying for it. The thing is, once you're behind the wheel and get the turbo spinning, all the flaws are forgotten.

Polo GT TSI's engine and gearbox are absolutely incredible but the dynamics of the car leave a lot to be desired. It's a great car if you want an automatic, but isn't engaging to drive. If the GTI fell in the ~15L price range, it would just walk away with top honors.

Baleno RS is stupidly overpriced for what it is. Yes, the engine is responsive, braking is spot on and the dynamics are nice but for the huge premium over the 1.2L version, it doesn't really tug the heartstrings. Also, the engine is a bit thrummy and its overall light build just doesn't give make it very attractive.

Figo? Just lacks the basic desirability factor. I don't remember when was the last time that I spoke to someone who wanted a car in that (Figo's) segment and the Figo was in their shortlist. I haven't driven it as much as I have the others, so wouldn't comment on its engine or gearbox.

If I had to put my money down on a car, it'd be the Abarth Punto but only because there's nothing else as fast. Come 2018, if (and I really hope) the Swift Sport is launched in India with a 1.4L Boosterjet, it'll be the one to go for, without a doubt.
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Old 1st April 2017, 19:49   #85
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Default Re: Fast Hatches: Baleno RS vs Polo GT TSI vs Figo 1.5 vs Abarth Punto

My vote goes for the Polo GT TSi, have driven other hatches barring Figo and when you take the complete package at a price point of 10L OTR, Delhi, it is the most practical and sensible buy at this price point. It does have its negatives like cramped rear seat, average dynamics (solved to a great extent with Bilstein B6) and sub par after sales from VW, it has a ton of positives too.

The DSG+TSi motor is orgasmic, the interiors are two levels up when you compare them to Abarth/Baleno, the build quality is solid inside out with no rattles/squeaks, automatic is a boon in irritating city traffic, has ESP, lots of upgrade options for modification lovers. This is a car which i can enjoy in the sports mode when am at the wheel and my 55 year old dad can also amble around comfortably in D.

Seeing the price point at which Maruti has launched Baleno RS, this kind of looks VFM when you see that it has a proper 4 cylinder motor, a quick shifting automatic, ESP and a premium image to it. Yeah, am planning to get a red GT TSi in 2-3 months which would replace my 5 year old Vento TDi.

Once you get used to the build quality of germans, it is hard to go back to other cars, automatic is my top priority and Polo perfectly fits the bill here.
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Old 2nd April 2017, 08:32   #86
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Default Re: Fast Hatches: Baleno RS vs Polo GT TSI vs Figo 1.5 vs Abarth Punto

Quote:
Originally Posted by coolboy007 View Post
Once you get used to the build quality of germans, it is hard to go back to other cars, automatic is my top priority and Polo perfectly fits the bill here.
I see that you have personal experience with Linea, yet I'm a bit perplexed. I've driven both VW's and Fiats, not sure of the interior layout and design (which can seem to be a bit dated in Fiat), but on the outer build quality I felt Fiats slap the VW into oblivion.. I mean what's missing? They have some of the strongest structures possibly on earth, going by how Fiats have survived incidents (photographs in our forum itself) and the sheet metal feels like bullet-proof shields, I have never seen rigidity to this level in a VW and most Fiat owners seem to agree. Having driven the E90 3, even the door shut of the BMW didn't feel as tight as a Punto's.

Also, seeing that you're a BMW owner, where do you prioritize steering feel in the equation when it comes to smaller hatches? I'm not sure if any improvements have been made now or not but the last time I drove the TSi it seemed.. seemed like nothing really since I never felt anything on my palms.. and again Fiat with its steering which really impressed me, that mix of precision and feedback and I got used to it right from the start, to me the steering is important, period.

I'm not typing this to question your choice or say my perception is correct, just want additional clarification on how you define the ideal hatch.
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Old 2nd April 2017, 15:11   #87
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Default Re: Fast Hatches: Baleno RS vs Polo GT TSI vs Figo 1.5 vs Abarth Punto

Voted for the Polo GT TSI.

Reasoning is very simple -

I don't like the Baleno one bit. Looks horrible and is very little substance for a lot of money.

The final toss up for me was always between the Polo and the Punto; and while the Punto is a fabulous car, I don't think I will buy a manual car in Bombay any more. Hence the TSI.
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Old 2nd April 2017, 15:51   #88
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Default Re: Fast Hatches: Baleno RS vs Polo GT TSI vs Figo 1.5 vs Abarth Punto

Yes, the Polo GT Tsi is an amazing car and Yes, the DSG gearbox is lighting fast but, it is an automatic gearbox at the end of the day. Any person even remotely associated with motorsport would tell you this, having a manual gearbox is a major link between the car and the driver.
The pinnacle of motorsport, Formula 1 doesnít use an automatic gearbox for a reason which everyone here should understand. 24 hours of Le Mans too.
The only true affordable petrol Hot hatch is undoubtedly the Punto Abarth. Itís the best in terms of power, and handling. Not to forget it beats the GT Tsi in every aspect of performance.
It makes me really sad to see that the car which could beat every car on this list, except the Abarth, in a straight line or any circuit is not even looked upon, much less considered. Iím talking about the Figo 1.5 Tdci.
Just because a car doesnít sell much or is a little more passenger oriented than performance, doesnít mean it isnít good on the track. The Baleno RS and Polo GTs, cars apparently made for the ĎEnthusiastí could never keep with a car with 14 inch wheels. Again talking about the Figo Diesel.
Yes, the handling of the new Figo isnít the best in class, but neither is the gearbox for the Abarth. That doesnít render the Abarth useless, Does it?
The only true affordable diesel Hot hatch is therefore, the Figo 1.5 Tdci.
Any person who has what many people seem to lack, Logic would understand my point.
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Old 2nd April 2017, 17:45   #89
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Default Re: Fast Hatches: Baleno RS vs Polo GT TSI vs Figo 1.5 vs Abarth Punto

Quote:
Originally Posted by dark.knight View Post
I'm not typing this to question your choice or say my perception is correct, just want additional clarification on how you define the ideal hatch.
When i wrote about build quality, it was on an overall basis and not just exterior sheet metal thickness where Fiat is the undisputed king. One also has to take into account the plastic quality and how the interiors hold up over a period of time, with our Linea in its 4th year, the power window plastic panels faded and got a yellow hue, some plastic bits broke up like the seat height adjustment lever and creaks/rattles creeped in.

If you have to choose a hatch which you would only drive on highways/track, the Abarth would be your best but for some one like me who also has to use the car in city, automatic is the deciding factor. Being an enthusiast is great but being stuck in traffic for over 1 hour with a car which has a long travel clutch + a rubbery gearbox does not help.

The TSi has average dynamics with average steering feel which i already wrote but for me, it is a complete package and my choice in this segment. Wish other brands also get some good automatics, if i had to buy a manual Punto, i would be more than happy keeping my 5 year old Vento, it still drives like new and the torque is wicked.
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Old 2nd April 2017, 20:10   #90
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Default Re: Fast Hatches: Baleno RS vs Polo GT TSI vs Figo 1.5 vs Abarth Punto

Voted for GT TSi purely for its A/T advantage. City or highway, a well mated A/T is a bliss to drive on Indian roads.
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