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Old 14th April 2010, 10:26   #1
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Default Swapping a Santro Xing for a Fiat Palio 1.2 EL

A question to everyone: What do you think of swapping a Santro Xing for a Palio 1.2 EL ?

I came across a 2003 single owner Palio 1.2 EL that's going really cheap. The car should be better than the Santro in terms of performance, which is a plus in my opinion. Most of the comforts should be the same, and I would expect a better ride quality from the Palio. FE may be lower but since I don't use the car every day, a drop of 1 or 2 kmpl would be ok, if the car is in really good condition.

The Santro Xing is now more than six years old and apart from the whine above 110 kmph, haven't had any trouble with it yet. For the record, it was damaged in the Mumbai floods and has been refurbished. And still running as good as new with only the ICE and the tyres being replaced.

Does it make sense to do the swap? The interesting point is I would stand to make a good amount of money in the deal. Question is vehicle wise is it worth?
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Old 14th April 2010, 10:45   #2
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Performance wise, Palio is far more better than Santro, Comfort wise also.
And since you are not minding less FE, GO AHEAD !
Do the swap before someone changes your mind.
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Old 14th April 2010, 11:11   #3
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Performance wise, Palio is far more better than Santro.
Are you sure? AFAIK the 1.2 Palio is notoriously under powered. Know of a friend who turns off the A/C to overtake on the highway!
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Old 14th April 2010, 11:24   #4
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The Santro has better LET and hence has better driveable power within the city. The Palio on the other hand is more of a Highway Cruiser.

But given the stick, the Palio will perform no doubt on that.


@bullinb: The AC switch off does have a 'turbocharger' effect, but its not as bad as its made out to be. Ofcourse if you are pushing speeds post 120 and want than extra bump in performance then switching off the AC definitely helps. But the Santro has a smaller engine and will be equally badly affected.
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Old 14th April 2010, 11:28   #5
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Originally Posted by honeybee View Post
A question to everyone: What do you think of swapping a Santro Xing for a Palio 1.2 EL ?
Few things to consider:

1) The car is old and will require periodic maintenance. How is Fiat serivce and availability of spares close to you.

2) Take a long test drive of the Palio to know city and highway performance and then decide if you prefer it over Santro. In my openion the ride and handling of Palio is better than Santro. Specially the rear seat comfort is much better in Palio. On performance Palio is bit heavy for the power it's little engine delivers.

3) In my friend circle, both cars have served their owners well but people with Santro have had a relatively trouble free experience. I know of Santros that have run more than a lac kms and have not required anything except regular maintenance.

if all points above confuse you more then go with your heart .
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Old 14th April 2010, 11:47   #6
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I once drove a diesel Indica where everytime I accelerated to overtake, I had to switch off the AC to get some extra boost, without which the overtaking could have taken forever.

With the Santro I don't need to switch off the AC while overtaking, but sometimes I do need to press the accelerator pedal a little harder. At lower speeds (~70), I have occasionally shifted down into 4th.

If the Palio is comparable to the Santro in this respect, that should be ok. While I am not looking to burn rubber, I would want it to be at least as quick as the Santro.

I went through the specs of the two cars on Carwale.com, and am surprised to find the Palio figures are almost as good as the Santro. One thing I am unable to understand, the Palio has a shorter wheelbase than the Santro (2mm difference), but it takes a whopping 5.5 metres turning radius, while the Santro does it in 4.4? What gives??

Carwale also shows the Palio to be a 4-door car and the Santro to be a 5-door one. How come??

Here's something to top this all: Received a call from a dealer looking to sell a Fiat Uno diesel. This is a 1999 model, and the price quoted is higher than the Palio 1.2. Some price.

Last edited by honeybee : 14th April 2010 at 11:49.
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Old 14th April 2010, 11:53   #7
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Don't even think about moving to the Palio 1.2, its outdated and even the Palio Stile is no longer sold across major cities and shortly it will not be produced at all. Keep the Santro, go for a stock replacement filter and use 93 Octane, this will improve your low end as well as some improvement in the top speed.
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Old 14th April 2010, 11:59   #8
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^^
Agree with anarchist.

Does not make sense. You are swapping a 6 yr old car for a 7 yr old car. For what ?

You know your car's condition, but do you know for sure how the Palio was maintained ?

The Santro will be more easy to drive in the city due to its low end torque & small turning radius.
It will give more FE, and for sure will be cheaper/easier to maintain than the Palio.

Since it is a running model, expect the Xing to give decent resale even 2 yrs down the line.
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Old 14th April 2010, 12:02   #9
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Originally Posted by honeybee View Post
I once drove a diesel Indica where everytime I accelerated to overtake, I had to switch off the AC to get some extra boost, without which the overtaking could have taken forever.

With the Santro I don't need to switch off the AC while overtaking, but sometimes I do need to press the accelerator pedal a little harder. At lower speeds (~70), I have occasionally shifted down into 4th.

If the Palio is comparable to the Santro in this respect, that should be ok. While I am not looking to burn rubber, I would want it to be at least as quick as the Santro.

I went through the specs of the two cars on Carwale.com, and am surprised to find the Palio figures are almost as good as the Santro. One thing I am unable to understand, the Palio has a shorter wheelbase than the Santro (2mm difference), but it takes a whopping 5.5 metres turning radius, while the Santro does it in 4.4? What gives??

Carwale also shows the Palio to be a 4-door car and the Santro to be a 5-door one. How come??

Here's something to top this all: Received a call from a dealer looking to sell a Fiat Uno diesel. This is a 1999 model, and the price quoted is higher than the Palio 1.2. Some price.
With Santro you will get a peppy city car with nice low end torque to punt around the city and with a relatively fuel efficient motor.

On the other hand the Palio is definitely not as peppy as the Santro at lower speeds, the performance comes into picture post 80 where the Palio scores and hence is better at highway cruising. With the Palio you will get more interior space and ride comfort but all this at cost of FE and a relatively poorer service experience.

Its all a matter of what you want from the car, I was in the used car market about 2 months back and finalized on the Palio because I wanted something that was roomy, comfortable and had good highway stance. I did not mind the lower mileage figures and poorer service backup.

Have a TD of a Palio from a friend to see how you like the performance.

EDIT: If I were you I'd keep the Santro and look at an lateral upgrade few months down the line!

Last edited by praful : 14th April 2010 at 12:03.
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Old 14th April 2010, 12:03   #10
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Originally Posted by bullinb View Post
Are you sure? AFAIK the 1.2 Palio is notoriously under powered. Know of a friend who turns off the A/C to overtake on the highway!
Both the cars seem to have the same 0-100 timings accoring to carwale. The pre-NV Palio 1.2 used to have a more powerful, 130cc AC compressor that used to suck a lot of power. In the NV version they reduced it to 110 cc. I guess it is a non-issue if the driver has to switch off the AC ocassionally when there is a dire need of more power.

I say, go for the upgrade. The Palio is a size bigger than the Santro. Better to drive too.
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Old 14th April 2010, 12:12   #11
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Originally Posted by praful View Post
But the Santro has a smaller engine and will be equally badly affected.
Actually no. With the limited experience I have with Santro, I didn't feel any difference in performance with A/C on either in the city or on the highway. On the other hand, the "turbo boost" is very evident in an Alto.

Anyway my point was that Palio 1.2 is not leagues ahead of Santro in terms of performance.
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Old 14th April 2010, 12:17   #12
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Originally Posted by bullinb View Post

Anyway my point was that Palio 1.2 is not leagues ahead of Santro in terms of performance.
That is a given, one is a overweight/underpowerd car and the other is lightweight/decent powered car.
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Old 14th April 2010, 12:17   #13
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Originally Posted by jigbarai View Post
^^
Agree with anarchist.

Does not make sense. You are swapping a 6 yr old car for a 7 yr old car. For what ?

You know your car's condition, but do you know for sure how the Palio was maintained ?

The Santro will be more easy to drive in the city due to its low end torque & small turning radius.
It will give more FE, and for sure will be cheaper/easier to maintain than the Palio.

Since it is a running model, expect the Xing to give decent resale even 2 yrs down the line.
Thanks Dippy for moving it to an appropriate section

As long as the Palio can be serviced within or without the authorized dealer network, I would not mind going for an outdated model. My hunch is the Palio is still very much serviceable. Corrections are welcome of course.

Regarding the condition of the car, yes, I have yet to see it physically. From the photos the car looks well maintained (exterior). One side has a couple of big dents, which may or may not be serious. The LHS outside mirror is gone too. But these are things which can only be tackled after a physical inspection. It may turn out to be cheap to fix or not cheap to fix. That call has to be taken on physical inspection. Prior to that, what are the factors that would go against a Palio 1.2 as compared to a Santro Xing?

Ride comfort and high speed stability are two points which the Santro may never score over a Palio. So more than low end grunt or maximum speed, I would like the car to be solid at the high speeds. If I can get a 15% higher speed on the roads in a Palio over a Santro, it's a big plus for me because it allows me to cut down on my journey times and also provides me with a more comfortable / composed ride.

anarchist/jigbarai, I appreciate the issues that you have pointed out. I may or may not agree with all of them, but I do respect them and your concerns, so please feel free to correct me anytime. Also let me clarify that I would be serious about the deal only if the car is mechanically and electrically sound. If there's any engine/suspension work to be carried out or lots of minor things like the hoses/belts/wiring required to be changed, I would reconsider my interest. I have yet to see the car, and I agree it may throw some surprises.

Coming back to the financial part, on checking Carwale, I can sell my Santro Xing for an ideal price of Rs. 190000/- and a Palio would sell for around 90000. Even if I achieved less than the best deals on both these counts, I would end up with a significant amount of money. So if the Palio is mechanically and electrically sound, it would make for a killer deal. I haven't commented on whether a Palio could be considered an upgrade over Santro, as that factor is subjective.

Last edited by honeybee : 14th April 2010 at 12:20.
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Old 14th April 2010, 12:32   #14
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Originally Posted by bullinb View Post
Anyway my point was that Palio 1.2 is not leagues ahead of Santro in terms of performance.
I am sorry if I gave the wrong impression by using the word Performance. I am not looking to improve my 0-100 figures or getting a 20+kmpl fuel efficiency.

With the Santro I am able to do upto 110-120kmph on the highways (usually cruising along at 100), on good roads going at 50-60 while on bad roads have to be under 40. Being a tall car it tends to wobble a bit around fast corners and on bad roads. Actually I slow down to around 40kmph on the Lonavla S curves when coming back from Pune. The AC is comfortable (though it won't chill) and the car is driveable all around with the AC, albeit I have to upshift later and downshift earlier than with non-AC. Switching off the AC brings down the load on the engine noticeably, but not significantly. It gives me around 17kmpl on the highways (without AC) and around 13 in city (without AC).

On all these counts, I have the impression the Palio 1.2 should do equally well. My understanding is Palio will score over the Santro when it comes to cornering stability and bad roads. So if I am able to cruise at around 15-20% higher speeds than in the Santro, and in better ride comfort, that's what I would call a significant plus.

If this car was too old, like the Uno, or worse in overall features/performance (such as a M800) I wouldn't even consider it to replace the Santro. But my hunch is it is as good as the Santro and in some cases better than the Santro, as a car.

By the way, the Uno diesel has covered 64K or something and is selling for a price higher than the Palio. What do you all say to getting it dirt cheap for daily running?
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Old 14th April 2010, 12:49   #15
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Default Santro to Palio

Hi
From the same perspective as yours, I am the firsthand experience Holder of things since I moved from a 2004 Santro to Palio 1.2 ELX in search of the same nirvana as you are. Being a Large guy , I was a bit cramped in the Santro and upon finding a cheap Palio 1.2 ELX jumped onto the occasion.....
My Experiences
  • The Palio does "wheelies".....< But It shook my pockets till even the coins fell out>
  • The Fuel consumption is nearly the same if you consider creature comfort
  • BUTTTTT... The cost of ownership , right from spares, to Service to Even the arrogance of a Palio Expert.........
  • I sold the 1.2 after incurring many expenses (The Gearknob cost a bomb, A tail light was sourced in 17 days, the Gear base plate takes 8 days to replace, ,
  • Funnily, keeping the Team BHP spirit in me alive , I moved on to the Pailo 1.9 D,But again the techincal hitches cost a BOMB here too despite its legendary torque figures.....Same gearbase, Sump , Clutch pressure plates, Bent Valves....(Spent 60K)Got rid of the car in 8 months and Graduatd to a Swift VDI...(Now have three in the family ) And Yes , I still have another Xing 2006, which my dad refuses to sell.Now I believe I have found Nirvana... Not that I m egging you to buy Swift, but Yes I m egging you NOT to go for Palio..
  • Believe Me , I lost 3 Lakhs in a span of 4 years and Now after buying the swift, I have not looked back. Assuredly go for a Maruti or Hyundai Product....Pls Call me on 9356661616 if you wish to hear my sorry story in person......I will be glad if I could save you 2 bits
Pls do keep in mind that Cost of ownership always pinches you more.......

Take an informed decision, do not go by emotional waves

Last edited by rohitgaur : 14th April 2010 at 12:56.
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