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Old 14th December 2011, 20:36   #121
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Default Re: Where are the driver-oriented cars? The Honda Citys, Lancers, Balenos etc.?

I learnt how to drive in a Ford Ikon 1.6 and a carb'd Maruti Zen. Wonderful cars, both of them. The steering was communicative and the 'box ensured positive shifts every time. The pedals were perfectly placed too.

Cars like the Esteem, the OHC, the Lancer, are all a breed of cars that entertained, despite not being packed with power. And today, we have cars like the Verna and the City that have all the power, but can't seem to translate all that into a smile. Which is sad.

The last proper fun car that I'd driven was the Fiesta (now the Classic)

I'd recently driven the Brio, and I was left pleasantly surprised! The car feels absolutely brilliant to drive, and somehow reminded me of my old Zen. It felt nippy and quick off the blocks, the steering was sharp, even though it's quite light at lower speeds, and the driver's seating-position was bang on!

Can't wait to pick one up!
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Old 22nd March 2013, 12:05   #122
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Default Re: Where are the driver-oriented cars? The Honda Citys, Lancers, Balenos etc.?

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Originally Posted by GTO View Post
Reading through this thread got me thinking....

Tell me one car under 10 lacs that as much fun to drive as my OHC Vtec.

@GTO There is absolutely no comparison to the drivabilty or the power you get from the OHC. The baleno comes a close second but in todays generation of cars the jetta or the verna are the frontrunners in the competition to the OHC or the baleno in power, but nothing matches the excitement you can get from a good old OHC!
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Old 22nd March 2013, 16:34   #123
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Default Re: Where are the driver-oriented cars? The Honda Citys, Lancers, Balenos etc.?

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Originally Posted by t3ofil4us View Post

@GTO There is absolutely no comparison to the drivabilty or the power you get from the OHC. The baleno comes a close second but in todays generation of cars the jetta or the verna are the frontrunners in the competition to the OHC or the baleno in power, but nothing matches the excitement you can get from a good old OHC!
The OHC VTEC was 115 PS (approx 113 bhp), the All New Honda City is 118 PS (approx 116 bhp). So Verna and Jetta are not the only cars which have power output like that of OHC. There are possibly other factors which make OHC a better driver's car than the new one, which I wouldn't be able to comment since I haven't driven the old one. But that is what I understand from the views of various forum members.

Last edited by Tats07 : 22nd March 2013 at 16:39.
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Old 22nd March 2013, 17:44   #124
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Default Re: Where are the driver-oriented cars? The Honda Citys, Lancers, Balenos etc.?

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Originally Posted by Tats07 View Post
The OHC VTEC was 115 PS (approx 113 bhp), the All New Honda City is 118 PS (approx 116 bhp). So Verna and Jetta are not the only cars which have power output like that of OHC. There are possibly other factors which make OHC a better driver's car than the new one, which I wouldn't be able to comment since I haven't driven the old one. But that is what I understand from the views of various forum members.
From what I know, the OHC 1.5Exi was 100bhp and the OHC Vtec was 106bhp. Some more of the old timers:
Baleno-94bhp,
Ikon 1.6-90bhp,
Palio 1.6-100bhp,
Daweoo Nexia-88bhp,(if I remember right)


Please correct me if I am wrong since I got these figures from the old auto mags which featured these cars when they were launched.

Last edited by tharian : 22nd March 2013 at 17:50. Reason: added line
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Old 22nd March 2013, 18:06   #125
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Originally Posted by tharian View Post

From what I know, the OHC 1.5Exi was 100bhp and the OHC Vtec was 106bhp. Some more of the old timers:
Baleno-94bhp,
Ikon 1.6-90bhp,
Palio 1.6-100bhp,
Daweoo Nexia-88bhp,(if I remember right)

Please correct me if I am wrong since I got these figures from the old auto mags which featured these cars when they were launched.
Wikipedia says OHC Vtec based on the 1.5 platform was 115 PS. But you could be right since Indian versions always had lower power output. The only way I guess is a confirmation from owners, but the old auto mags may not be wrong either. In that case I will stand corrected, though my earlier statement of cars being available in or above that power range still holds good. :-)
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Old 22nd March 2013, 18:29   #126
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Default Re: Where are the driver-oriented cars? The Honda Citys, Lancers, Balenos etc.?

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Originally Posted by tharian View Post
From what I know, the OHC 1.5Exi was 100bhp and the OHC Vtec was 106bhp. Some more of the old timers:
Baleno-94bhp,
Ikon 1.6-90bhp,
Palio 1.6-100bhp,
Daweoo Nexia-88bhp,(if I remember right)


Please correct me if I am wrong since I got these figures from the old auto mags which featured these cars when they were launched.
Nexia was 92 bhp IIRC. The above mentioned cars were real good drives, except Nexia.

My current drive is Baleno, and after searching for cars, I have restrained myself not to go for anything.
No car except Indica/Indigo CS has Indepedent Rear Suspension. Why I dont know. Only Ford has managed to give good ride with non independent suspension. Baleno has got power, FE, a fantastic ride which almost no car even in Rs. 15 lakh bracket can provide and the added bonus of good handling. Nimbleness and agility are better than many feeling dead hatches.

The only FTD cars are from Ford. Swift lacks the punch required, SX4 is not as nimble or as tidy handler, City, with its seating position and weird steering is no match for the earlier cars along with a suspension which barely barges into average ride quality.

The value for money feature is also eroded from the cars IMO. The real feel and satisfaction which OHC, Baleno, Esteem, Lancer, Ikon used to deliver are absent. One might end up spending close to a million rupees on a hatch or sedan, only to get a dead steering, not so settled ride and average handling.

Last, I forgot to mention, the most loved engines, i.e. Baleno's and OHC's were long stroke motors. The torque they had in lower ends were amazing and impossible by today's VVTI (and similar acronyms ) or turbodiesels. Be it low end torque or sheer power for high speed cruising and/or that emergency overtake, they had it all.

Last edited by aaggoswami : 22nd March 2013 at 18:35.
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Old 23rd March 2013, 00:21   #127
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Default Re: Where are the driver-oriented cars? The Honda Citys, Lancers, Balenos etc.?

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Originally Posted by aaggoswami View Post

The only FTD cars are from Ford. Swift lacks the punch required, SX4 is not as nimble or as tidy handler, City, with its seating position and weird steering is no match for the earlier cars along with a suspension which barely barges into average ride quality.

The value for money feature is also eroded from the cars IMO. The real feel and satisfaction which OHC, Baleno, Esteem, Lancer, Ikon used to deliver are absent. One might end up spending close to a million rupees on a hatch or sedan, only to get a dead steering, not so settled ride and average handling.

Last, I forgot to mention, the most loved engines, i.e. Baleno's and OHC's were long stroke motors. The torque they had in lower ends were amazing and impossible by today's VVTI (and similar acronyms ) or turbodiesels. Be it low end torque or sheer power for high speed cruising and/or that emergency overtake, they had it all.
Some of your words are quite true. But even today we have good driver's car. They may not be much better than Baleno/OHC/Lancer/Ikon/Zen/Palio if you think they are a decade newer.

But there are some good driver's car in this market as well.

The most deprived segment is the hatchback segment. The Polo 1.6 and the Punto 1.4 are good. But none of them are good enough to match the brilliance of the Palio 1.6.
Even the Astar and Alto K10 are noway as fun to drive as the Zen.

The Vento/Rapid diesel is a fun to drive car. Although it is not perfect as the handling leaves a lot to be desired. It is not bad but Linea and Fiesta are noticeably better.

The T-Jet is fantastic. Although after having driven a Vento, the T-Jet felt it could do with some more grunt lower down the rev range. Even then I believe it is better than all the cars talked about in here.

The other car is Fiesta 1.6 (Classic). It is available at a very cheap price. 5.5L for the base model which has decent amount of equipment.

Moving up, the Jetta & Laura diesel are good driver's car as well.
The Laura VRs is also fabulous. But then we always had the Octavia VRS.

These cars are probably better. But we did expect a lot. After all 10 years is not a short time.
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Old 23rd March 2013, 06:42   #128
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Default Re: Where are the driver-oriented cars? The Honda Citys, Lancers, Balenos etc.?

I still remember what the Ford MD had said about the fiesta 1.6S. "Everyone loved it but very few bought it." I think thats the reality in our FE obsessed market. I would not blame the manufacturers for providing the cars they do. If they see a demand, they will give us sometime down the line. How I wish the 1.6S was still available, and in the aquarius blue color.
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Old 23rd March 2013, 07:10   #129
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Default Re: Where are the driver-oriented cars? The Honda Citys, Lancers, Balenos etc.?

It basically comes down to two things. We are unfortunately a fuel obsessed market which means even if a chassis has the ability, we put in a small engine for better mileage. The second is the government laws which coupled with our need for VFM means that any car close to 4m in length will be cut and you then need a 1.2 petrol or 1.5 diesel. Not exactly conducive to great handling cars
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Old 5th December 2015, 15:57   #130
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Default Re: Where are the driver-oriented cars? The Honda Citys, Lancers, Balenos etc.?

Not everyday that you come across the best sedans from the nineties...posing together. Spotted last night @ Bandra. Photo credit - Rudra Sen.

Where are the driver-oriented cars? The Honda Citys, Lancers, Balenos etc.?-avcm1sh_vuxrwaoxr9bwmwceyssjspmfx7e0jdtey2dl.jpg
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Old 5th December 2015, 16:09   #131
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Default Where are the driver-oriented cars? The Honda Citys, Lancers, Balenos etc.?

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Not everyday that you come across the best sedans from the nineties...posing together. Spotted last night @ Bandra. Photo credit - Rudra Sen.

Nice to see the Honda and Lancer together. They were times when in college or just out of college that I would dream of owning one of these. Saddened by the way HM killed the Lancer and Honda brought in their supermarket trolley to replace this one.
What an old thread you just bumped up.

Last edited by Arjun Reddy : 5th December 2015 at 16:11.
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