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View Poll Results: Which cheapest car is your choice?
Maruti 800 DX 161 45.48%
Tata Nano LX 193 54.52%
Voters: 354. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 15th June 2010, 13:26   #151
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Originally Posted by longhorn View Post


A brand new car catching fire minutes after being driven out of the showroom, IMO, cannot be compared with a recall for fuel pump issues identified and recified by Maruti(without waiting for the owner to come running to them). How you deal with the situation makes a world of difference to the customer.




The evolution from the SS80 to the current M 800 platform happened ,IIRC, way back in 1986. Its still a 25 year old design. Even the current Alto BS IV engine is basically the same as that of the SS80. A 25 year old engine design meeting Euro IV norms is no small matter. Yes, the humble M 800 can achieve what your Ford Ikons and Skoda Fabias could not. In that humility and practicality lies its USP.

Tata has IIRC sorted out the issues with the first few batches of the Nano.
I will admit their clean up job is a lot more shoddier than MS but assuming the next batch of Nanos will not have the same issues (which im sure it will not), it will become the car of choice for the lower middle class on a tight budget.
It is somehow more cooler than the M800 maybe because it is non pretentious of the fact that it is a cheap car.

How sure are you that the current engine is the same 25yr old engine?
Im just curious because a MS salesman told an uncle of mine that the engine in the ALTO is a newly designed one, to keep up with the BSIV norms.
Was he just trying to sell the car or is it a fact?

True the Ikons and the Skodas cant keep up with the MS engine on the emission front, but they are a lot better and superior on the performance aspects.
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Old 15th June 2010, 13:48   #152
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Tata has IIRC sorted out the issues with the first few batches of the Nano.
I will admit their clean up job is a lot more shoddier than MS but assuming the next batch of Nanos will not have the same issues (which im sure it will not), it will become the car of choice for the lower middle class on a tight budget.
It is somehow more cooler than the M800 maybe because it is non pretentious of the fact that it is a cheap car.
Yes the Nano is the in thing today. Every people owning luxury marques are queueing up to buy the Nano. It is very much a looker but how far it will go as an M 800 alternative, only time will tell.

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Originally Posted by Grafin View Post
How sure are you that the current engine is the same 25yr old engine?
Im just curious because a MS salesman told an uncle of mine that the engine in the ALTO is a newly designed one, to keep up with the BSIV norms.
Was he just trying to sell the car or is it a fact?
The basic engine block is the same one as that came with the SS80. They have worked on the head. The original engine was carburetted. The ones that you can but today are MPFi engines. The MPFi treatment happened in 2000 when the Euro 2 norms kicked in. The BS IV Alto's engine is the latest in a series of upgrades the engine has gone through during its lifespan in India. The engine in the Alto has been upgraded to meet Euro IV norms. It wouldn't classify as a redesign in my books.

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Originally Posted by Grafin View Post
True the Ikons and the Skodas cant keep up with the MS engine on the emission front, but they are a lot better and superior on the performance aspects.
I don't think its fair to compare the performance of a 0.8 litre unit with that of a 1.3 litre unit, but if you compare the MPFi Esteem's 1.3 engine to that of the Ford Ikon 1.3, we all know who takes the cake. That said if you compare the Suzuki engines based on bhp per litre, it just blows the competition away.

Last edited by longhorn : 15th June 2010 at 13:50.
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Old 15th June 2010, 14:04   #153
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Can we please keep out patriotism, hero-worship & such un-related stuff and just discuss the 2 cars in question ? It is pointless when everytime a Tata car's -ves are pointed out, people come out with "Only Indians diss Indian stuff" kind of irrelevant comments. In today's globalised world, who cares if it is Indian or foreign ? If it is good and suits our needs, we buy it - end of chapter.

Coming back to the cars, lets see how each scores :

Looks : Obviously a major param for most car-buyers. Again looks are subjective - so for every guy who likes the M800's looks, you would have another who swears by the Nano's looks. Let's say both score equally here. If it was the EU Nano, I would vote for that over the M800.

Cabin Space : I have not been inside a Nano, but have used M800 in its various avatars. From reviews, it looks like the Nano has more space inside, more headroom etc. So, this param is obviously in Nano's favour.

Luggage space : While the M800 does not have a cavernous boot, it does beat the Nano on this param, given that there is virtually no usable luggage space on the Nano.

Driving ease : One of the main issues I have with the M800 is the lack of PS. I dont know if the top-end trim of Nano has PS - atleast the website does not mention it. If it has, Nano scores here. Else, both are same.

Engine :
The 800cc engine in the M800 might be decades old, but it is proven to be a reliable workhorse. Also, like someone mentioned, it is no mean fact that such an old engine is not only the FE-iest of the lot, but also able to meet successive emission norms. KollamRaja mentions that his BS-III Nano does not seem to have the same pulling-power as the BS-II Nano. What happens when the engine is modded to meet BS-IV ?

FE: As per kollamraja, the Nano's FE is "Easily 22+ kpl on highways and 12 14 kpl in my town". The town in question is Kollam, Kerala. An M800 in Chennai (much more busier than Kollam) will easily give 14kpl, which means it will give more than that in Kollam. And on highways, it can easily give 20+.

We could say that both are equal on this param and move on. But given that the M800 is a decades old car, while the Nano is the pretty young hottie with latest technology, is it enough that it just matches the oldie in FE ? IMO, No. It should better the M800 significantly, which it does not. The FE in M800's favour.

Safety : The M800 does not have airbags. Neither does the Nano. So, how are we concluding here that the Nano is safer in an accident ? By gauge of steel used ? Not a proper way to compare safety. By crash tests done on the EU version of Nano with airbags ? Again not an apple-to-apple comparo. Given the lack of proper data, both are equally good or bad in safety.

Highway behaviour : Strictly speaking, both of these cars should not be on the highways. But then we even have 50cc mopeds cruising on the highways in India, so why not cars, even if they are cheap ? I think both would fare equally good or bad on highways - the lower CG might be a little favourable to the M800.

Reliability : M800 inspite of being old, would beat the Nano on this param. No fires or smoke-without-fire issues with it. The Nano is in its infancy and yet to prove itself. Even if we ignore the rare fires and smokes, we still need time to say it is reliable. M800 scores here.

Exhaust note : I know that none of us check out the exhaust note of a car before buying it. But that is because till the Nano came around, all cars available sounded like cars. The Nano sounds like an auto-rickshaw. While we can say that we dont care about this, I guess it would be good for Tata to fix this - not a nice thing.

So, what does the new hottie-in-town really have as her USP ? Cabin space mainly.

Her touted USP was initially the price-tag (the 1-lakh car), but that is no longer the case. Her whole raison d'etre was actually her low price which would help bikers move to a car, but that has long been lost and the poor biker families long forgotten in the adulation the cheapest-car got worldwide.

What would you buy of the two ? : I would buy neither. I need PS & A/c as bare minimum in a car - can do without PW, beige interiors and other frills. Neither car has PS and thus dont appeal to me enough to pay for them.

Which car would win finally ? : Time will tell. Let's wait and watch.
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Old 15th June 2010, 14:05   #154
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Yes the Nano is the in thing today. Every people owning luxury marques are queueing up to buy the Nano. It is very much a looker but how far it will go as an M 800 alternative, only time will tell.



The engine in the Alto has been upgraded to meet Euro IV norms. It wouldn't classify as a redesign in my books.



I don't think its fair to compare the performance of a 0.8 litre unit with that of a 1.3 litre unit, but if you compare the MPFi Esteem's 1.3 engine to that of the Ford Ikon 1.3, we all know who takes the cake. That said if you compare the Suzuki engines based on bhp per litre, it just blows the competition away.
Yeah, the verdict will be made be made by the sales and customer satisfaction.

Well, its gone through more than a nip - tuck and botox then huh?

Id classify that as a new engine than an upgrade.

Well you compared the emission norms of the above mentioned engines with the M800, so i thought id make the power comparison.
Does the Esteem engine confirm to the BSIV standards?
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Old 15th June 2010, 14:22   #155
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Id classify that as a new engine than an upgrade.
You can classify it as whatever you want, but it is not a new engine. It was known as the F8D back then, its known as the F8D even today. The new engine family, as far as Maruti is concerned, is the K series. This is what drives the AStar, new WagonR, new Estilo, Ritz and the current Swift.

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Well you compared the emission norms of the above mentioned engines with the M800, so i thought id make the power comparison.
You missed the point here. All vehicles manufactured and sold in metros are supposed to be BS 4 compliant, be it 800cc ,1300cc or 4500 cc. I don't think its reasonable to expect an 800cc engine to provide similar performance as a 1300cc engine, BUT it is mandated by law that all vehicles must meet BS IV norms irrespective of their cc.

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Does the Esteem engine confirm to the BSIV standards?
The Esteem is no longer in production so there is no question of whether it confirms to BS IV standards. But if your question is, had it been in production, could it have met the BS 4 norms, then the answer is a resounding yes. Want proof ? The 1.2 litre engine on the Maruti Eeco is nothing but a downsized ( by 100 cc) Esteem engine, and this vehicle is being sold in cities where BS 4 norms have come into force.

Last edited by longhorn : 15th June 2010 at 14:25.
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Old 15th June 2010, 14:28   #156
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Originally Posted by longhorn View Post
You can classify it as whatever you want, but it is not a new engine. It was known as the F8D back then, its known as the F8D even today. The new engine family, as far as Maruti is concerned, is the K series. This is what drives the AStar, new WagonR, new Estilo, Ritz and the current Swift.



The Esteem is no longer in production so there is no question of whether it confirms to BS IV standards. But if your question is, had it been in production, could it have met the BS 4 norms, then the answer is a resounding yes. Want proof ?

I know about the BSIV emission norms anyways forget it. You missed the point i tried to make there.

Was/is the Swift 1.3 engine based on the old Esteem engine?
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Old 15th June 2010, 14:35   #157
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I know about the BSIV emission norms anyways forget it. You missed the point i tried to make there.

Was/is the Swift 1.3 engine based on the old Esteem engine?
Yes the Swift 1.3 engine is based on the old Esteem's engine. The Swift's 1.3l unit was replaced with the new 1.2l K series because the new engine has better torque and driveability and is more fuel efficient when compared to the G series and not because it couldn't meet emission norms. Also Maruti waanted to take advanatge of the tax breaks available on engines below 1200 cc.
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Old 15th June 2010, 14:39   #158
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Yes the Swift 1.3 engine is based on the old Esteem's engine. The Swift's 1.3l unit was replaced with the new 1.2l K series because the new engine has better torque and driveability and is more fuel efficient when compared to the G series and not because it couldn't meet emission norms. Also Maruti waanted to take advanatge of the tax breaks available on engines below 1200 cc.
Thanks Mate!

I would also like to know who designs the engines on the MS cars?

Suzuki or Maruti?
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Old 15th June 2010, 14:42   #159
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AFAIK, its done in Suzuki Japan, though Maruti engineers are involved in the project.This is for new engines. The upgrades/downgrades are handled by Maruti I believe. I'm not very sure about this though.

Last edited by longhorn : 15th June 2010 at 14:43.
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Old 15th June 2010, 14:44   #160
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AFAIK, its done in Suzuki Japan, though Maruti engineers are involved in the project. I'm not very sure about this though.

No wonder the engines are good.

Thanks again!
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Old 15th June 2010, 15:01   #161
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Originally Posted by supremeBaleno View Post
Can we please keep out patriotism, hero-worship & such un-related stuff and just discuss the 2 cars in question ? It is pointless when everytime a Tata car's -ves are pointed out, people come out with "Only Indians diss Indian stuff" kind of irrelevant comments. In today's globalised world, who cares if it is Indian or foreign ? If it is good and suits our needs, we buy it - end of chapter.

Coming back to the cars, lets see how each scores :

Looks : Obviously a major param for most car-buyers. Again looks are subjective - so for every guy who likes the M800's looks, you would have another who swears by the Nano's looks. Let's say both score equally here. If it was the EU Nano, I would vote for that over the M800.

Cabin Space : I have not been inside a Nano, but have used M800 in its various avatars. From reviews, it looks like the Nano has more space inside, more headroom etc. So, this param is obviously in Nano's favour.

Luggage space : While the M800 does not have a cavernous boot, it does beat the Nano on this param, given that there is virtually no usable luggage space on the Nano.

Driving ease : One of the main issues I have with the M800 is the lack of PS. I dont know if the top-end trim of Nano has PS - atleast the website does not mention it. If it has, Nano scores here. Else, both are same.

Engine :
The 800cc engine in the M800 might be decades old, but it is proven to be a reliable workhorse. Also, like someone mentioned, it is no mean fact that such an old engine is not only the FE-iest of the lot, but also able to meet successive emission norms. KollamRaja mentions that his BS-III Nano does not seem to have the same pulling-power as the BS-II Nano. What happens when the engine is modded to meet BS-IV ?

FE: As per kollamraja, the Nano's FE is "Easily 22+ kpl on highways and 12 – 14 kpl in my town". The town in question is Kollam, Kerala. An M800 in Chennai (much more busier than Kollam) will easily give 14kpl, which means it will give more than that in Kollam. And on highways, it can easily give 20+.

We could say that both are equal on this param and move on. But given that the M800 is a decades old car, while the Nano is the pretty young hottie with latest technology, is it enough that it just matches the oldie in FE ? IMO, No. It should better the M800 significantly, which it does not. The FE in M800's favour.

Safety : The M800 does not have airbags. Neither does the Nano. So, how are we concluding here that the Nano is safer in an accident ? By gauge of steel used ? Not a proper way to compare safety. By crash tests done on the EU version of Nano with airbags ? Again not an apple-to-apple comparo. Given the lack of proper data, both are equally good or bad in safety.

Highway behaviour : Strictly speaking, both of these cars should not be on the highways. But then we even have 50cc mopeds cruising on the highways in India, so why not cars, even if they are cheap ? I think both would fare equally good or bad on highways - the lower CG might be a little favourable to the M800.

Reliability : M800 inspite of being old, would beat the Nano on this param. No fires or smoke-without-fire issues with it. The Nano is in its infancy and yet to prove itself. Even if we ignore the rare fires and smokes, we still need time to say it is reliable. M800 scores here.

Exhaust note : I know that none of us check out the exhaust note of a car before buying it. But that is because till the Nano came around, all cars available sounded like cars. The Nano sounds like an auto-rickshaw. While we can say that we dont care about this, I guess it would be good for Tata to fix this - not a nice thing.

So, what does the new hottie-in-town really have as her USP ? Cabin space mainly.

Her touted USP was initially the price-tag (the 1-lakh car), but that is no longer the case. Her whole raison d'etre was actually her low price which would help bikers move to a car, but that has long been lost and the poor biker families long forgotten in the adulation the cheapest-car got worldwide.

What would you buy of the two ? : I would buy neither. I need PS & A/c as bare minimum in a car - can do without PW, beige interiors and other frills. Neither car has PS and thus dont appeal to me enough to pay for them.

Which car would win finally ? : Time will tell. Let's wait and watch.

In this huge post, the only thing that I disagree is the point related to 'highway performance'.

True, neither of the two is a highway car.

Yet, these are the following things that make 800 better than NANO:

1) Better range. Nano has a small fuel tank almost comparable to some Indian bikes sold in 150-220cc segment.

2) Better brakes. Few years ago, I wouldn't had imagined that I'll be preferring 800's braking capability over some other car but Nano is simply wrse than the 800 when it comes to braking.

It has no discs, its brakes lock easily and brake fade is in abundance. 800 loses its poise when braked hard and generally end up swaying to one side. But Nano is simply ridiculous when it comes to this behavior. Panic stops in Nano can lead to further reasons to well..er...panic.


Other than this the above quoted post was excellent.


Moreover,

3) Many people say that Nano has much more space than 800. True. But what use is that extra legroom if you can't travel large distances in the car?

With next to no boot, luggage will find its way either to a Roof-rack or the passenger seats. While former makes the car do worse in cross-winds the latter defeats the whole USP of 'more passenger space'.

And I can't think on any modern other car which has no glove compartment.


4) As for crash safety, am not sure if Nano will fare much better than 800 but still I'll give it benefit of doubt.

It may however be noted that all the crash test results which are being flaunted are not of the Nano sold here.



@airhead

If you think overtaking is not concerned with safety nothing can be more wrong.
Ever been in a sticky situation? Where you have made a move for overtake, can't get back to your lane as you are already halfway through and then you witness oncoming traffic or a dog/cattle crossing the road at some distance?

What do you do, downshift and/or 'step on it' and the overtaking is over.

Doing the same is not that easy in a 800. You have to plan everything, even an overtake but then there are chances that when demand arises a downshift will do enough good to overtake a bus/truck in a sticky situation.


Now, comes the Nano. And this is from experience I am mentioning. You floor the gas, not much really happens. Because you'll already be above 70 kmph for overtaking an inter-state bus and you do not have much reserve in need of emergency.
Finally, one may downshift. You do that and what? The rev-limiter cuts in (it easily does even in top gear) and revs die-down leaving you with no option but to brake and try to successfully get back to your lane or keep the revs as high as possible and pray to that Idol that's been fixed on the Dash.

In situations like above, which are common on our highways, I'll better be in an 800 than a Nano.

Still think my point did not had anything with highway manners and safety?


Also, Like you said, one can't think like someone unless he is in same position. True, but one can very well try and that happens every minute on this forum. Do not people owning 800s give car buying advice to people going for a D-segment cars. Do not people with diesel sipping SUVs give advice our put forward their views to Baleno/Fiesta owners looking for some mods. And more often than not, those advices are worthy enough to be considered.


Finally, unlike you mentioned, 800 at this very moment can be bought. And most of us are not discussing whether 6 months down the line will we buy the nano or not.

What we are discussing is if Nano is really a Aam Junta car and if its as good as 800 (original people's car) if not better.



@others


Am not against TATA. Am neither biased towards Maruti. There are a couple of threads started by me where I have criticized Maruti when I should. If you still have doubts, let me know, I'll send the link and that should put to rest any doubts you might have of me being biased towards Maruti.




I really hate when I see us fellow bhpians calling each other TATA or Maruti fanboys or that some of us are biased towards a particular brand because we own it. In past 15 years my family has owned cars from 5 different brands (including TATA and Fiat) and I guess its not fair for us to accuse each other of being biased.

I really like this debate going on here and I have nothing personal against anyone here. But it disappoints me tremendously when we behave like rivals (even I have done so in past and no happy about it) and mention things like "Suzuki owners are supporting 800 unnecessarily and stuff".


Also, please let us leave this 'desi car' and 'desi manufacturer' thing alone. Patriotism is a good thing but how many of us here really own a TATA car?

When we have to spend our hard earned money on something does it matter if its an Indian manufacturer or a Korean or anything else?



The current debate can be much more interesting without the above two points that I have mentioned.



Quote:
Originally Posted by longhorn View Post
Y. Also Maruti waanted to take advanatge of the tax breaks available on engines below 1200 cc.

Maruti never really seems to give up!



The 1.3 G series hasn't died yet. Its now a 1.2L g series doing duty on EECO and meets BS 4 norms.





Regards.

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Old 15th June 2010, 15:11   #162
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3) Many people say that Nano has much more space than 800. True. But what use is that extra legroom if you can't travel large distances in the car?

With next to no boot, luggage will find its way either to a Roof-rack or the passenger seats. While former makes the car do worse in cross-winds the latter defeats the whole USP of 'more passenger space'.
I think its a well established fact that the Nano is a city car, so highway runs are pretty much out of the picture.

Given a choice of being driven in either an M800 or a Nano within the city, travelling in the Nano would make better sense as it would be more comfortable.
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Old 15th June 2010, 15:31   #163
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I think its a well established fact that the Nano is a city car, so highway runs are pretty much out of the picture.
Yes, Nano is a city car. But the points I made were in response to the comparison between highway behavior of both the cars being done by many here.

Also, there are many 800s doing the highway runs. Don't you feel that a majority of Nano owners will be first time car owners and as this will be there only car, they will be using it for highway runs as well?

Quote:
Given a choice of being driven in either an M800 or a Nano within the city, travelling in the Nano would make better sense as it would be more comfortable.

Yeah, for driving and being driven in the city I'll also prefer Nano. Provided I have a bigger car in my garage and Nano will act as a second/third car.

But If it has to be my first car, I'll be more than willing to choose the dated 800. Many reasons for the same I have already mentioned.


800 also comes with an option of factory fitted LPG kit (though that leaves no boot space). It translates in very low running costs. An Optra diesel owner I know of recently bought one for his daily 40 km commute (consisting of heavy traffic and he was tired of scratches and dings on his black optra) and he is all smile ever since he is using the car. He is quite surprised that the daily running costs is almost as low as taking the over-loaded mini-buses one can see in Bhopal.


Anyways, this is more of a 'one-off' case and doesn't have much to do with this discussion as such.

I don't know if a LPG kit can be fitted on a Nano and if at all it is fitted, I suspect its performance.


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Old 15th June 2010, 15:53   #164
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Don't you feel that a majority of Nano owners will be first time car owners and as this will be there only car, they will be using it for highway runs as well?


Yeah, for driving and being driven in the city I'll also prefer Nano. Provided I have a bigger car in my garage and Nano will act as a second/third car.
Yeah the Nano is indeed aimed at the first time buyers so it all boils down to the needs and choice of the buyer.

If someone with a tight budget is looking for a new car, something fresh in the market, going to be used in the city predominantly and with highway runs not going to be done that often, the Nano is a very good option indeed.

Im sure its not that bad in the Highways, but thats not its USP.

Its a city car aimed to meet the demands of a family of 4-5 who used to depend on a scooter as a means of transportation.

The choice is well laid for such a buyer and now he has an option of a car other than the M800 for a change.
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Old 15th June 2010, 15:58   #165
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If someone with a tight budget is looking for a new car, something fresh in the market, going to be used in the city predominantly and with highway runs not going to be done that often, the Nano is a very good option indeed.
Yes it indeed is a good option in this case.

Quote:
The choice is well laid for such a buyer and now he has an option of a car other than the M800 for a change.
Yes, as a strict city car it does make for an interesting and (more importantly) a fresh alternative.



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