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Old 18th March 2005, 16:58   #1
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Default Are Fiat Cars over-rated?

This thread has been started at the behest of Steeroid. We were having a wonderful discussion in the thread started by ksil, titled - 'Best Sedan in the 5-6 lakh category'.

Well Steer's contention is that the Palio and the Petra are over-rated cars. What are your opinions?

Mine is that in the current Indian car market the Fiats (atleast the current breed of them) appeal to a different set of buyers. There is nothing 'over-rated' about them.

I have nothing against other marques or models - the City Vtec I really respect and the Mercs I really lust for - but in my current situation where I cannot afford either of the above the only car that caught my fancy was the Petra. Lets see:

Fuel Economy - Decent
Interiors - Decent
Boot - Enormous
Body Build (as in safety) - Very Good
Ride - Excellent
Engine and Power - Awesome
Goodies - All that I need.
A.S.S. - Lots of scary stories - granted - but picking up
Appeal - Strong (atleast for me)
Fiat's future, resale value etc - I don't care.

Nothing in the competition came close.
Ikon - I do not like this car, I do not know why.
Esteem - Decent performer, but I feel like a sardine in a tin box
Baleno - Neat car, but 5.1L versus 6.2L is a big difference.
The Opels - Decent cars but too cramped for my liking.
Accent - I dont like this car either. Too staid and plain jane. And a no-no for the price.

My feeling is that for some of us the car that we buy is like the wife/husband that we choose. Cold hearted logic does not always make a great car. A great machine yes. Not a great car.

Feel free to voice your opinions on Fiat or anything that has to do with Fiat.
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Old 18th March 2005, 17:26   #2
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A big NO! They definitely are not overrated!

I own a Palio myself since a year and I am very happy with my decision. You should see what this vehicle is capable of. I had recently undertaken a trip to Nagarahole forest reserve from Bangalore. I drove my beauty on what I can never dare to say roads, but the car behaved really well. There is not a squeak from the vehicle. I am happy that I bought Palio over some tin boxes that are available at almost the same price as my vehicle.

On the contrary, I feel that Fiat vehicles are underrated. Every competitor worth his salt badmouths the vehicle eventhough he knows that the car is decent.

OK, now tell me, for an onroad price of just over 4.5 lakh, can I get a car which is as bullet-proof as Palio, which handles like a Palio? I have testdriven several cars and believe me, there is nothing which can beat a Palio in this range. Yes, mine is a 1.2 and it is a little sluggish. It takes eternity to reach the coveted 3 figure mark, but can any other car match the stability of my Palio at that speed? I am also happy because for the price I have paid, I am getting an "off-roader" (well almost). One of my colleagues always says this, "Palio is an offroader in the guise of a car". Palio is definitely not overrated according to me.

Autocar had even made a comment that Fiat cars have better longevity than the company itself. :-)
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Old 18th March 2005, 17:30   #3
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My opinion, we Indians are little biased towards Europians and kind of trust them blindly and same applies for "Fiat" okay they make Farrari but if you see at companys perforamance in Europe or even in itatly their market share is droping very fast...even in their home country...I think figures speak pretty loudly if we are ready to listen..

If we just look at car as a piece of technological product their cars might be better than the options we have in India...but buying a car is not an end of the story its start...they way Fiat Management have handled the company in India...I would never consider buying their product unless the make their things right..

PS: I love Fiat Palio like anything as a car...but thats not an end of the story
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Old 18th March 2005, 17:34   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by typeOnegative
but in my current situation where I cannot afford neither of the above the only car that caught my fancy was the Petra. Lets see:
This correction is for those who would have thought I was super rich on reading the original post.


Deepak -

That last sentence of yours is so right. I just hope things change for the better.
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Old 18th March 2005, 17:38   #5
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Well the love story with fiat started from the days of good old premier padmini. It has continued to the uno and the palio.

The uno has clocked 85k Kms now and it has never let me down once so far. Yes i did have to change the steering assembly once which costed me 10k but i believe that was a one off incident. The ASS is not too great but not down right bad. they have improved a lot.

One thing worth mentioning is the cost of the spare parts. They have come down pretty much and you never have to dread getting a repair bill.

Definitely not over rated. The best value for money cars that you can get!
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Old 18th March 2005, 17:59   #6
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Short answer : I wouldn't care about what one says about Fiat cars, if he has not used one and compared it against available options in India.
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Old 18th March 2005, 18:52   #7
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Fiat cars are not OVERRATED.
Which other car company offers -
1. a 100 BHP engine
2. DICKY
3. power windows
4. central locking
5. power steering
6. very good compromise between ride and handling
7. safety
8. Big car feel
all for 5.06L
the answer is petra

In comparison to the competition -
Ikon 1.3 - loses out on-
big car feel
ride
boot space
engine
Price
should i go on?

gains -
more space
FE
price - apprx - 5.4 ish

Maruti esteem - loses out on-
looks
space
comfort
performance
quality
big car feel
safety
I can go on an on but then it would become boring

Gains -
Chaeap to maintain
FE

Tata Indigo - Loses out on
- looks
- performance
- ride
- handling
- build quality
- FE
- Boot space
i am getting bored mentioning everything

Gains -
Space
niggling problem (I mean to say that TATA INDIGO has MORE problems then PETRA)
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Old 18th March 2005, 20:40   #8
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Not overrated at all, they really are exceptional cars, spoilt by the customer service shambles of Fiat india.
they are cars for the enthusiast now, only diehard fans buy em i guess.
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Old 18th March 2005, 22:38   #9
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Quote:
My opinion, we Indians are little biased towards Europians and kind of trust them blindly
You gotta be kidding. No European car in India sells well. Ok the Octavia sells but take away the TDi and ....
In fact, that statement applies to Japanese cars.

Fiat cars are over-rated? come on, Fiat cars are the most under-rated in India today.
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Old 18th March 2005, 23:53   #10
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Well,IMO, in the indian context the Fiats are not over-rated. But to a light extent, i agree with pingme about being biased toward european manufacturers. The Palio/Petra have absolutely no european competition in India. If you look in Euorpe, you'll be able to count the number of Palios and Petras on road on one hand. If you think Palio is a godlike hatchback, just try and get your hands on any VW Golf and you'll be hooked for life. If we had VW in india, this thread would be titled : "Are VW cars overrated?"
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Old 19th March 2005, 00:16   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Deeps
If you think Palio is a godlike hatchback, just try and get your hands on any VW Golf and you'll be hooked for life. If we had VW in india, this thread would be titled : "Are VW cars overrated?"
Fully agree.

If Fiat is such a great company with great products, why is it doing badly all over the world?

Its just that other better products have not arrived in indian markets...
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Old 19th March 2005, 00:40   #12
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Exactly my point LLL. Perhaps Fiat afficianados can throw more light on the fact that why is Fiat in a bad shape globally & why most of Fiat & Alfa cars are depreciation disasters.
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Old 19th March 2005, 07:28   #13
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Quote:
If you think Palio is a godlike hatchback, just try and get your hands on any VW Golf and you'll be hooked for life.
Palio was never intended to be sold in Western Europe so you can't compare it with a VW Golf. These cars are exclusively designed for Third world countries. And if VW Golf is launched here then it will sell way less then the Palio! Come on, if Indians consider the Palio a fuel guzzler then imagine what they will think of the Golf.I still maintian that European cars are not trusted blindly here in India. Look at Opel. They sell even less then Palio and Corsa is a true blue Western European car. Go to GErmany and you will see tons of Corsa's. It used to be like the Santro is here. But even Corsa is losing market share in GErmany like Fiat is losing in Italy. So would you now say that Opel's are over-rated?
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Old 19th March 2005, 07:28   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Deeps
"Are VW cars overrated?"

IMO - they are - the Golf 3 and 4 were well made tubs of lard. Drive a Focus and see the difference. The Golf 1 and 2 were great except for their brakes (LHD to RHD conversion issue). Golf V is supposed to be good but the problem is the world has caught up with them. Polo is outclassed. Passat competent - forthcoming new one is supposed to be good though
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Old 19th March 2005, 08:52   #15
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But the new VW Golf Gti is in a class of it's own. It's paddle shift is slicker, faster and more efficient than any other (supercars included).

Even the Enzo has lag while upshift but not this. Ever heard an F1 car upshift? That's how fast the DSG box in the Golf Gti is.

Now, getting back to the topic, i don't think fiat cars are over rated. Forget the older fiats (upto the Uno). I'm talking about the Palio-Siena-Petra era.

Shan2nu

Last edited by Shan2nu : 19th March 2005 at 08:56.
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