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Old 8th August 2012, 11:44   #16
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Default re: 7 Simple Guidelines if you're buying a European car

Thanks for the thread! Like most others have said, the title isn't indicative of the thread content, it seems to suggest "Why you shouldn't buy a Skoda". I hope you can reconsider changing the title to "7 simple guidelines if your buying a European car". Case in point:

Our Octy which is 5.5 years old with 75k on the odo hasn't had a single part replaced "under warranty" all replacements were on account of normal wear and tear. It just shows how reliable these euro's were at one point of time.

In contrast, my 6 month old Polo Diesel has had the rear brake assembly as well as the steering cone replaced under warranty
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Old 8th August 2012, 12:26   #17
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Default Re: 7 Simple Guidelines if you're buying a European car

Buying a European car is always a difficult decision. Somehow the Japanese and Koreans make quality look SO easy. It boggles the mind how reliable the Toyotas, Hondas and Hyundais are. It's not like this hasn't been discussed in depth on the forums before: the Germans on flatbeds thread is legendary as are the various ones on Skoda ownership woes.

I bought my VW with my heart in my mouth and 1.5 yr/27,000 km later am still not fully convinced it's going to stay with me for the long haul (my Accent was me for 7 years/80,000 km and the Swift is still here at 6 yr/70,000). Overall, it hasn't been a bad ownership experience- no breakdowns, no niggling issues, no unexpected service visits/costs but I am aware that the longer the ownership experience lasts (and considering my warranty runs out in a matter of months now) the more the fear that something will fail and fail BIG!

It's especially galling that the higher up the price/luxury spectrum you go with a European car, the higher the chances of failure. In fact I am pretty sure that my eventual migration to the luxe segment will be with a Japanese manufacturer rather than a German one. DSG woes, runflat irritants, flatbed nightmares-- too much to handle!

Last edited by noopster : 8th August 2012 at 12:27. Reason: Typos
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Old 8th August 2012, 12:35   #18
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Default Re: 7 Simple Guidelines if you're buying a European car

You could have used alternative title(s):

1) 7 reasons not to buy a Skoda
2) Skoda? No-da! (or Poda ..for the Tamil speaking people!)

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Old 8th August 2012, 12:36   #19
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Default Re: 7 Simple Guidelines if you're buying a European car

Quote:
Originally Posted by VeyronSuperSprt View Post
Both of these have given me a good enough ownership experience and the reason is that I have followed what I have written above, so this thread is intended to let the others hopefully experience the same.
Very rightly said and this thread in my opinion is one of the best to set the right expectations for prospective European car customers.

Ownership experience is all in the head. All of us are wired differently and our expectations and tolerances are different. If the expectations and the experience match, then there is no discord.

Going by the mentality of an average Indian, it is better not to buy a European car if it is the only car in the garage (IMHO). It is best suited playing the role of a 2nd/3rd car in the family.
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Old 8th August 2012, 13:22   #20
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Default Re: 7 Simple Guidelines if you're buying a European car

I too am of the opinion that the title of the thread should be changed to something more apt like:

"What to watch out for when buying a European Car."
Coming to Skoda specifically, the OP is himself, a happy Skoda owner and so are quite a few people who have them. In fact, my friend's uncle owns a the older gen manual Laura at Coorg and he is very happy with it, for the past 5 years now.

Unfortunately the last gen Lauras and a few present gen DSGs have been giving it up on the customers which takes the reliability quotient down but as a brand on a whole, I feel that the kind of luxury that Skoda offers for the prices they charge is simply amazing. Also, their Rapids, made more in line with the "simple" Japanese counterparts, have had no failures till date, so I guess the thumb rule here is "Keep it simple silly."
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Old 8th August 2012, 13:45   #21
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Default Re: 7 Simple Guidelines if you're buying a European car

Quote:
Originally Posted by noopster View Post
....I bought my VW with my heart in my mouth and 1.5 yr/27,000 km later am still not fully convinced it's going to stay with me for the long haul (my Accent was me for 7 years/80,000 km and the Swift is still here at 6 yr/70,000). Overall, it hasn't been a bad ownership experience- no breakdowns, no niggling issues, no unexpected service visits/costs but I am aware that the longer the ownership experience lasts (and considering my warranty runs out in a matter of months now) the more the fear that something will fail and fail BIG! ....
I am paying heed to what you are saying because it's highly likely my next car is a German. I own two Hyundai cars at 4 yrs / 82,000 kms and 7 yrs / 97,000 km with only minor niggles so far.

Now if you haven't had any problems with Vento so far as you state above, why are you not convinced it will stay long haul? Is it fear based on low reliability hearsay?

Cheers,
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Old 8th August 2012, 13:48   #22
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Default Re: 7 Simple Guidelines if you're buying a European car

I love the stylish, understatedly elegant Euro chic design in comparison with the design monstrosities of the Japanese or Koreans.
Quality of fit, finish, finesse also in the Europeans, is very high indeed.
Reliability - we will see.
As of this moment I have only one car in the garage and its a Skoda.
Not planning to buy another second car for the house all over again, because I simply dont feel the need for one. Am quite happy buzzing around in an Auto when the Skoda pushes off for its servicing and pampering etc.
As someone else said, I guess the mindsets are a question of how one is wired really.

And should the title not be "an Euro..." instead of "a Euro..."?

Quote:
Originally Posted by noopster View Post
Buying a European car is always a difficult decision. Somehow the Japanese and Koreans make quality look SO easy.

Last edited by shankar.balan : 8th August 2012 at 13:49.
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Old 8th August 2012, 13:55   #23
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Default Re: 7 Simple Guidelines if you're buying a European car

Quote:
Originally Posted by VeyronSuperSprt View Post
So here are the guidelines and am trying to keep it as simple as possible:
You forgot an 8th - if buying used, walk in with your eyes wide open, check out the owner and his style of driving and attitude ot maintenance. I never saw my car till I collected it. I did not get to meet the owner. I paid for it

..and a 9th - Anticipate forthcoming expenses and wear and tear on a rolloing basis and be prepared to move on before the costs hit oyur pocket

Thats me - I loved the car but could not put up with the support and also I predicting more wear happening

Quote:
Originally Posted by SS-Traveller View Post
Wow - a nice way of saying "Stay away from Skodas unless you have deep pockets and/or the technical expertise to fix them". Wonder if excerpts from this thread would also someday be added to the annals of Skoda jokes.
I used to have deep pockets but I still have the tehnical expertise from my Skoda days

Quote:
Originally Posted by diffsoft View Post
Also it may be true that all German cars are less reliable in general vs. Japanese / Hyundai, but attitude makes a lot of difference and Skoda may have a lot of ground to cover there vis-a-vis its parent VW or BMW or Merc.
Cheers,
True but remember it is the complexity that makes you want to love these cars and breaks your heart when things go wrong


Quote:
Originally Posted by shashank.nk View Post

Our Octy which is 5.5 years old with 75k on the odo hasn't had a single part replaced "under warranty" all replacements were on account of normal wear and tear. It just shows how reliable these euro's were at one point of time.
The Old Octy was simple and bullet proof. Go sit in a Laura and you will see how inadequate the build quality is in relative terms


As you all know, I exited Skoda due to poor support and bought a VW (new since I could nurture it and ensure it will be reliable
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Old 8th August 2012, 14:06   #24
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Default Re: 7 Simple Guidelines if you're buying a European car

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Originally Posted by ajmat View Post
The Old Octy was simple and bullet proof. Go sit in a Laura and you will see how inadequate the build quality is in relative terms
As a matter of fact, i've sat and traveled in a Laura (old and current gen) and i agree that the build quality is not what it used to be. I've even mentioned it somewhere on tbhp, don't remember which thread.

Since this thread was focusing on reliability, i didn't bring up build quality here.
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Old 8th August 2012, 14:13   #25
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Default Re: 7 Simple Guidelines if you're buying a European car

As some you may know, I recently bought a used vRS. It has had its share of troubles, viz a viz, Coil Pack failure, transmission-RHD axel connecting seal leakage, RHS bushing rubber destruction. Due to these problems, in my 4 months of ownership, the car has been in the workshop for atleast 2 weeks and more 2 weeks it wasnt running well. So nearly 1-1.5 months of my ownership the car wasn't either with me or not working well, BUT the rest of the time, its amazing. I bought a Toyota Fortuner the same day. Both are running almost same kms. BUT the skoda even now feels much more solid. The quality is so much more better. It even has small unnoticeable features like if you depress the brake pedal while on the move, the accelerator stop functioning, as in no matter how much you would like to accelerate which braking, you can't.
I am extremely unimpressed with the Fortuner's goodies levels and have made it clear a number of times. I really do feel its extremely overpriced, but every penny I pay for the vRS, though it always comes up alot, I still dont repent, BECAUSE, I enjoy the car completely, every moment its with me, every meter it runs.

I would also like to share my POV. ALL european cars are super relaible, as long as you dont compare them to japanese/korean. As in, you need to replace parts sooner and they are costlier, but they will run equally long as a japanese/korean car if not longer, and it will not show its age. I experience it everyday.
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Old 8th August 2012, 14:21   #26
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Default Re: 7 Simple Guidelines if you're buying a European car

One can't help but feel the issue with Skoda is accountability, of the functions within Skoda and dealer management, so this lack of transparency and accountability manifests in poor customer service. The same dealers under a better managed brand would probably quickly toe the line.

If the car doesn't have issues everything is cool, but issues crop up then everything seems to go downhill.

Since this has been ongoing since they launched it would have to be an India management issue, the cars themselves are robust. But inspite of all the feedback, negative press, general consensus to avoid Skoda among buyers, there seems to be no awareness or even the slightest expressed willingness to change and improve.

Its like they don't feel its a problem and that level of disconnect and reluctance to take responsibility and be accountable is scary.
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Old 8th August 2012, 14:25   #27
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Default Re: 7 Simple Guidelines if you're buying a European car

Quote:
Originally Posted by ajmat View Post
You forgot an 8th - if buying used, walk in with your eyes wide open, check out the owner and his style of driving and attitude ot maintenance. I never saw my car till I collected it. I did not get to meet the owner. I paid for it
I remembered this point after the post had been put up. I was actually going to say " Do Not Buy Used", unless you have been knowing the owner since he bought the car and also know his complete mindset on cars. Otherwise, please stay away!

Quote:
Originally Posted by ajmat View Post
..and a 9th - Anticipate forthcoming expenses and wear and tear on a rolloing basis and be prepared to move on before the costs hit oyur pocket
I don't think this will be a problem if you are the first owner and have been treating the car as indicated in this thread. This is especially so in the newer models such as Rapid which have quite a high degree of indigenisation.
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Old 8th August 2012, 14:39   #28
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Default Re: 7 Simple Guidelines if you're buying a European car

Quote:
Originally Posted by abhayshanu View Post
I bought a Toyota Fortuner the same day. Both are running almost same kms. BUT the skoda even now feels much more solid. The quality is so much more better. It even has small unnoticeable features like if you depress the brake pedal while on the move, the accelerator stop functioning, as in no matter how much you would like to accelerate which braking, you can't.
I am extremely unimpressed with the Fortuner's goodies levels and have made it clear a number of times. I really do feel its extremely overpriced, but every penny I pay for the vRS, though it always comes up alot, I still dont repent, BECAUSE, I enjoy the car completely, every moment its with me, every meter it runs.
Well said I must say Abhay.

The kind of feel that a European car gives you can never be matched by a Japanese rival. Like they say, the Japs are mere machines, designed just to do their job.

Coming to reliability, I feel that if maintained well, and driven correctly, the Europeans would last as long as the Japanese and the higher spare prices are due to the premium feel that they offer.
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Old 8th August 2012, 15:00   #29
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Default Re: 7 Simple Guidelines if you're buying a European car

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Originally Posted by VeyronSuperSprt View Post
4. The adage “Less is More” is very apt for Skodas/ VW if you do not want to be a part of the VW Group’s Global R&D wing. Simply put, avoid the DSG’s and the L&K variants. Stick to manual gearboxes and at max the Elegance trim.
L&K variants are about the best that Skoda has to offer and there is very little evidence (if any) on this forum or on Briskoda that the goodies that come with L&K malfunction in any manner. I own an Octy L&K and a Laura L&K. Both have had over 1l kms on them and not even a single feature on these cars has given me trouble even once. L&K offers the following notable features:

a) More airbags (Laura has 8 of them)
b) Xenons
c) Sunroof
d) Steering mounted controls
e) Cruise Control
f) Different alloys
g) Puddle lamp and other sundry interior lighting
h) Better sound system with more speakers
e) Anti pinch windows
f) Leather seats

Each one of these things operates like new even to this day in both my cars. The parts quality (for say cruise control stalks, steering controls, sunroof etc.) is really good. Nothing has worn out. There have been zero glitches along the way (touchwood). When I consider that my Octy is 7 years old and still has some of the features (cruise control or anti-pinch windows) that do not come in some good sedans even to this day you do realize that L&K is one really loaded trim from Skoda. The link to my ownership review is quoted below.

http://www.team-bhp.com/forum/long-t...11111-kms.html (Fulfillment - Skoda Octavia 1.9 TDI L&K at 111111 kms.)

The DSGs might have their share of problems (and that too primarily the 7 speed dry DSG boxes) but the L&Ks are great variants to own.

Last edited by Cesc : 8th August 2012 at 15:08.
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Old 8th August 2012, 15:00   #30
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Default Re: 7 Simple Guidelines if you're buying a European car

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Originally Posted by VeyronSuperSprt View Post
This thread is to help prospective buyers of Skoda minimize problems while owning a Skoda car. They are intended to help buyers increase reliability of their car and have a better ownership experience. These steps should help increase reliability of all cars (especially the other German ones), but you have a larger margin for error in the likes of Toyota, Maruti, Honda, Nissan, Hyundai.
The thread couldn't have been more in-the-face, but ironically, it's all true! My Fabia's been in at the ASC almost 10 days now for a hydraulic u-engine mount replacement. A replacement as simple as this is a piece-of-cake for a Maruti ASC who would replace it just like a tyre.

On the other hand, these small niggling issues - like rattling noises and MID warnings - go unnoticed until one turns in his non-European at the ASC. What I'm going to say next is strictly my personal opinion - the luxury, silence (noise-insulation) and precision with which a European pampers you is what makes one go for a European. I've got so used to it that a ride in a friend's non-European car makes me immediately realize what a gem my car is.
Almost like: Imagine dropping a stone in a pond of steady and calm water. the ripples created definitely indicate that something has disrupted the balance. On the other hand, drop the same stone in a stream of running water. The ripples are rarely noticed because the water is already unsettled.

That's the way I look at it, when I find niggling and nagging issues with the Fabia - thankfully just ONE in my 15000kms of ownership
In conclusion, a European MUST BE dealt with caution and care. Quality comes at a price, whether you accept it or not. Do your part in maintaining one, and the European does her job likewise.

Last edited by mempheS.D : 8th August 2012 at 15:02.
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