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Old 18th April 2012, 15:45   #31
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Default re: *Rumour* : Maruti 800 production to end in April 2012

Definitely a nice car. However flimsy it felt it ran and ran. But all said, I think Maruti Udyog ( and MS) gave the Indian public a raw deal. While many of the nostalgic and over senti folks on this forum may not agree we should look at the car in real perspective.
Would this car have ever succeeded in a more level playing field? Did this car ever meet 'value for money' reqt? Was it safe? Was it spacious? Was it rattle free? Was it solid? Was it crash worthy? None of the above.
Therefore singing paens to this little car is not on a rational man's list of things to do.
If ever the Matiz had been provided the sort of infrastructure, Govt funding, monopoly it would have sold twice the number in my humble opinion.
The bare bones Maruti 800 DX was retailing for 2,80 ON Road in Chennai in 1998. Did it give the customer anything more than a ride. Its engine could barely drive the AC. So it was a 'wheels or AC' issue for the car.
Look at the Matiz and Santro. They were just 50 K more in cost and had 15 years better technology, much better suspension, space, reliability, safety, AC, brakes, engines, long distance availability and a 10000% better overall feel. Maruti robbed us blind with a substandard product and here we are going GA GA!
Any true petrolhead as we all have claims to be, would know that the 800 was a 70s product for cities and not a contemporary car for a Nation.
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Old 18th April 2012, 16:01   #32
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Default re: *Rumour* : Maruti 800 production to end in April 2012


The Maruti 800 was definitely the benchmark in 1986; it was as modern a car as they come and clearly the best of the lot.

However, I agree with your point of the situation in 1998. The 800 was past its sell-by date, but Maruti being Maruti, continued to sell an old model and increase the prices ever so often, with hardly any improvements to show for it. The Santro is / was a decidedly superior car. That's precisely why it made Hyundai the No.2 manufacturer in India within a year of launch
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Old 18th April 2012, 16:10   #33
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Default re: *Rumour* : Maruti 800 production to end in April 2012

The car that dad first owned
The car in which I first learnt driving
The car for the first night out with friends
The car for first college new year party
The car which made claim insurance for the first time

Cliched, but a lot of guys would have this to say about the M800.

I cannot forget the excitement when we got our 1997 model. I was still in college and driving the car into college gates was a HUGE thing then.

Nostalgia apart, this car was built for abuse. We drove it on LPG after 2005 and it went about without a whine - just that driving on petrol occasionally made me feel like the car was supercharged

On a long trip, once the brake oil was bleeding from the rear brakes and we still managed to drive it home. Another time, the front went over a big stone and the engine bedding (mounting nuts) came loose. The engine was virtually moving about in the bay. The car still made it for more than 400 kms.

I remember replacing so many electric parts on it so easily (there were very few parts in the first place!) and everything was so simple.

We finally parted with it in 2009 and needless to say, the memories stay on.

PS: It had a fancy number too: 7557.
PPS: Thanks to GTO for starting this thread!

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Old 18th April 2012, 17:50   #34
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Default re: *Rumour* : Maruti 800 production to end in April 2012

So the car that kick started a motoring revolution on the Indian roads is bidding adieu and fading into oblivion.
The M800 did aid in the setting up of a quality ancillary industrial chain that helped other entrants too..
I recall my six and a half year of an ownership experience.
The perfect steering feel, the maneuverability, the in city scooting capability et al.
Bye Bye M800.

Last edited by rajeev k : 18th April 2012 at 17:55.
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Old 18th April 2012, 18:29   #35
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Default re: *Rumour* : Maruti 800 production to end in April 2012

The first car we owned - I have fond memories of it!

But I am not going to feel so nostalgic about it going away. Maruti should have pulled the plug on it a long time back. Well, better late than never!
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Old 18th April 2012, 19:46   #36
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Default re: *Rumour* : Maruti 800 production to end in April 2012

But the car which is supposed to replace this iconic 800, is far from being an icon, IMO. With plane bland Estilo'ish looks, it will go the Zen way, I think. In effect, the MR Wagon shell from Japan may cause for the end of 2 iconic brands in India - first, the real ZEN and now, the 800! Why Maruti, why? Why can't you design a new stunner and replace the 800, than using the Estilo shell? Can we expect at least the old jelly bean Zen body for the new 800?
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Old 18th April 2012, 22:20   #37
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Default re: *Rumour* : Maruti 800 production to end in April 2012

Sad to see this iconic car go off the shelves but I guess all good things will have to come to an end one day.
We still have one of these at home so I will not miss it, this is our tried and trusted city ride
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Old 18th April 2012, 22:38   #38
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Default re: *Rumour* : Maruti 800 production to end in April 2012

Hmm...Lots of emotions attached from everybody!

In the family this was the first 'modern' car to 'upgrade' from a Fiat/Premier Padmini. My first 4 wheels purchased out of my income was also again a beaming white M800! I still remember carrying jerry can with Unleaded fuel as it was not available freely those days. Never had a problem with the car. No break downs, no hard ships!
One wonderful experience- Maruti Suzuki 800, Amen!
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Old 18th April 2012, 22:43   #39
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Default re: *Rumour* : Maruti 800 production to end in April 2012

Sad to see it go. It was my first car---owned it from 1989 to 2001. Upgraded to a Waggie as I needed more space and an AC.

As someone said, the Waggie has not struck a chord with me as did the 800. My wife still misses it.

Incidentally, the Fiesta's drive reminds me of my 800---the gear ratios and strong 2nd gear seem so similar.
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Old 18th April 2012, 22:48   #40
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Default re: *Rumour* : Maruti 800 production to end in April 2012

Man, how bad I am feeling for this lovely car! It will be all history now.

Maruti 800 was our first 'New' car which was with us from June 2001 to March 2007. Sadly I lost all her photos because of a hard disk crash in 2008 and there was no backup as well.

I Hope Maruti 800 will be remembered for long by all of us!
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Old 19th April 2012, 00:59   #41
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Default re: *Rumour* : Maruti 800 production to end in April 2012

Totally agree with general sentiments here of nostalgic attachment to 800 . My grandfather bought Maruti 800 in 1986 and till date its with family and doing its duty. Though its doing the duty very loyally and without any trouble last i heard from my uncle "i am going to repair and restore this 800 to previous glory". If i am not wrong, it has original Japanese engine which is running trouble free even today.

Some one said here, as a petrol head we see that MSIL selling 800 which is old age car, previous gen car etc compared to Santro, Matiz etc. But yeah most of us though claim to be 100% petrol heads, we do have that emotional bond with this iconic car of India. despite driving a zen, wagon-r, indica and Figo i still say driving a 800 is so much fun (not as an enthusiast but as normal indian citizen) Such nice is its tin metal dorr closing "tichik" and nice light weight body.

After reading this thread i recalled . . "yes, i too had learnt driving on a 800". I still remember going at 70kmph in 4th gear for first time and feeling that i will be next Schumi

thanks again GTO for article. . BYE BYE 800. . Hope MSIL retains iconic 800 name withour screwing up car design like it did for zen
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Old 19th April 2012, 01:19   #42
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Default re: *Rumour* : Maruti 800 production to end in April 2012

hats off to the M800 esp Mark II. It redefined Indian car scene. Stepping from an Ambassador (or Fiat or Standard 10/Herald), it was contemporary, refined, highly fuel efficient, had better acceleration, handling, easier parking etc etc ... List goes on.

I too learnt driving on my dad's M800. He got it after 2 year wait (lottery no in early ten thousand's) - it was the upgraded model with a proper hatch (Maruti responded to customer inputs to the SS80 very fast), and had only the tyres and glass made in India. Everything else was imported from Japan, and the quality was in a different orbit (later indigenization and cost cutting esp in the nineties, compromised quality severely).

We had the M800 for 17+ years, and it was still running fine - had to sell it off finally as it was lying parked as we had 2 other cars by then.

@fiestarry, it costed some 55k when launched, and my dad bought the newer model in 1986 @72k. You bet it was VFM compared to an Ambassador or Fiat, and reliable like there was no tomorrow. No leakage springing in some hose as the Amby was bound to have now and then, did not need strong arms to muscle the car in turns esp at rest, had a 'sporty' steering...
Maybe Maruti needed to phase it out earlier, but then they learnt from HM and Premier, I guess!

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Old 19th April 2012, 01:38   #43
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Default re: *Rumour* : Maruti 800 production to end in April 2012

My uncle still owns a 2001 5 speed M800, but its very much ignored since the other car is a Innova.

I had the pleasure of its ownership a year ago when uncle had gone outstation for 2 months.

She was fun to drive and would easily touch 110 inspite of being poorly maintained.

Accelaration was brisk and i really had lot of fun ripping it
The best thing which i enjoyed doing it was REVERSE, such an easy car to reverse.
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Old 19th April 2012, 02:10   #44
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Default re: *Rumour* : Maruti 800 production to end in April 2012

I've been carried by the good old maruti 800 since 2001 and still if not everyday, occasionally I take my M800 for a spin. Luckily, It's the 5speed MPFI one and it brings a smile on my face every time I drive it

So soon I can expect the M800 to be a vintage M800.
Lil upmarket though

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Old 19th April 2012, 02:25   #45
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Default re: *Rumour* : Maruti 800 production to end in April 2012

RIP M800.

Like everyone I too learnt driving in an M800. Still have the 5-speed version back home which is the first car I bought with my own money. And I have lots of sentimental values attached to the car.

It was a fun driving car because of the better tuning & power brakes.

Part of my salary was used to load the car with all goodies such as music system, tubeless tires, tachometer, sun film, seat covers, aux lamps, and everything that can go in an M800.

Dad refuses to sell it because of the ease with which he can drive in Kochi traffic and use the restricted parking space.
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