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|12th May 2010, 20:39||#16|
Join Date: Jan 2008
Thanked: 27 Times
You're the Fuel!!!
Man, oh man, how I'm loving this thread.. In fact, I'm going to send a print to my parents, who have chided me ever since for buying a non-practical car.
I did a TD in March 06, and was bewitched - I paid the money first, then and there, and then told my folks and wife what I had gone and done.
What's more, I could not afford it, then. In fact I came to afford the Swift - the EMI as well as the running cost - somewhere around 2008. Had to face ridicule from some of the more "practical-minded" colleagues, including taunts about the mileage. But what the heck - I was loving it, and I'm loving it even now - 66000 kms on. Long live the Swift.
|13th May 2010, 02:33||#18|
Join Date: Nov 2009
Thanked: 41 Times
I envy you! You haven't left a single point for me, to write in appreciation of the KING of hatches!
|13th May 2010, 07:33||#19|
Senior - BHPian
Join Date: Jul 2008
Thanked: 3 Times
Brilliant Tribute. This car is definitely worth it, Just got into the family a month back.Really loving the car a lot.
BTW mine is Black swift vdi which finished its first service and second service in the first month only , meaning it did 5404 kms to be precise in exactly a month.
|13th May 2010, 07:54||#20|
Join Date: Nov 2009
Thanked: 91 Times
Excellent write up Sid .
I have booked ma Toy i.e swift D on march 14 .
I am dream of it day and night to transform that ma swift D to toy looks . :P
I just love this toy .
Its total fun to drive car .
|13th May 2010, 08:09||#21|
Join Date: Jan 2010
Fantastic thread and I'm so much looking forward to the next few parts.
As a proud Swift owner for 7 months now, nothing interests me more than articles about the car which I find is one of the best to drive.
Thanks a lot of the detailed 'biography' of the Swift.
|13th May 2010, 13:53||#22|
Senior - BHPian
Join Date: Jun 2007
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Part 3: The heart of the matter
Engineering a car, especially catering to wide variety of audience from sensible to senseless to sporty to young and old alike, you need the right engine which qualifies as an all rounder suited to the characteristics of the swift.
Kisi ne kaha hai,
yeh dil na hota bechaara,
kadam, no hote aawara,
jo khoobsoorat koi apna humsafar hota...
Of course, this humsafar is khoobsoorat enough to make heads turn but Suzuki engineers also had to prove that it had the go to match the show, so a variety of engines were developed based on various needs and demands in different countries.
Depending upon the markets, a variety of transmission choices are available.
The Indian market models only have front wheel drive ad manual gearboxes for both petrol and diesel.
Depending upon market needs, requirements and priorities, the swift comes with a variety of wheel and tyre combinations:
But hey, did I say "sporty" drive?
Yes, all the versions of swift come with one common ingredient- a sporty drive.
But hey, do you know that there is a true top end variant of the swift which promises all the chills and thrills of a hot hatch and comes exclusively power dressed for it?
Yes, of course, its the Swift sport 1.6, all about it coming up in the next part.
Till then paint the town red, and orange, and green, and blue, because you are the fuel!
Last edited by sidindica : 13th May 2010 at 13:55.
|13th May 2010, 13:59||#23|
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: Mangalore / Bangalore
Thanked: 19 Times
wow, what a write up sid, As usual superb pics aligned with the write up!
i dint know that 21K Swift were booked even without TD when it was launched!
If i am not wrong, Swift is most sought after car for modifications!. i havent seen any other car modified as many as swift!
Hope Swift Sports and 2 door swift will be introduced in india!
PS: Even after 5 years of launch, Swift has sold 12.5K last month!
|13th May 2010, 22:33||#25|
Senior - BHPian
Join Date: Jun 2007
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Apart from the usual mumbo jumbo variants available in many parts across the world, Suzuki also developed a hotter variant of the swift and aptly named as the sport. Yes, a real swift sport.
Lekin Apne desh mein ek bahut badi problem hai.
Haan ji, problem.
Woh yeh ki yahan ke logon ko "sport" ka asli matlab nahi pataa.
Woh sochtein hai ki gaddi mein anginat kaale ghodde, kutte, billi aur fal sabjiyon wala sticker ke saath holi ke rang bhar dene se sport kehlata hai.
Arre, dikhave pe na jao, apni akal lagao.
Available in both 3 and 5 door versions, the swift gets its own specific GTI body kit.
These include specifically designed front bumper with integrated three part mesh grill and air dam, the famous boomerang headlights are now projected with smoked lenses, specific side skirts to match the side body contours perfectly, 16" multi spoke alloy wheels which look gorgeous and convey a sense of dynamism, integrated air dam with dual exhaust pipes, chin splitter and a rear diffuser in addition to a GTI specific rear bumper.
The rear boomerang taillights too ooze style with smoked lenses and a tailgate spoiler complete the mean look.
Available in jazzy paint shades like red, yellow, blue pearl, white and silver, every shade gives the car a different personality and suits all types of buyer demographics. Young ladies in particular love this.
The insides, too are refreshing and jazzed up with special touches which include:
To ensure that the swift has the go to match its show, Suzuki's engineers have developed a powerplant especifically for the swift sport.
The engine is M16A VVT (yes, the same engine that powers our very own ess guna chaar (SX4) sedan) but is heavily modified for its application in the swift.
Using lighter aluminum cylinder block and heads, this all aluminum engine chruns out an awesome 125 horses at a high 6,800 rpm and a high torque of 148 Nm at a high 4800 rpm, enough to get your expression grinning from point to point.
Zero to hundred is dispatched in 8.5 seconds and top speed is close to 200 kmph, more than enough to put a grin as wide as an Africa in your face.
But that does not mean that the engine is a guzzler. If ran on correct quality fuel, this engine can return a combines mileage of 7.3 litres per 100 km. Dual personality, yet the same at heart?
So, don't fret your brains and decide between performance and mileage. With the swift sport, you get the best of both worlds.
Turn on the ignition and you know that you are in treat as soon as you hear that raspy exhaust note coming out of those poked out dual exhausts. the sporty wraparound console is driver centric and with a tilt plus telescopic steering column and a height adjustable driver seat, driving position is faultless for all human frames.
Power at your disposal comes from a high revving 1.6 motor which clocks zero to hundred in much less time than even you can pronounce the whole name of the car!
the swift sport's combination of all roundness also makes it an extremely easy car to live with, so boy racer or weekend getaway, you can have it all in one.
Pity that maruti hasn't launched one in India despite we people clamouring for it and receiving a positive response at all auto expos at which it was dislayed.
Maruti, are you listening?
Lekin kaun jaane ki
Main aur meri tanhaai aksar yeh baatein karte hain
Tum hoti to kaisa hota, tum yeh kehti, tum voh kehti
Tum is baat pe hairaan hoti, tum us baat pe kitni hansti
Tum hoti to aisa hota, tum hoti to vaisa hota
Main aur meri tanhaai aksar yeh baatein karte hain...
OK, enough of day dreaming! lets get back to jiving..oops driving..
Now that we have admired this avatar from afar, its time to get back and
start a journey across the golden quadrilateral in this incredible India, a journey called swift.
The swift is more than just a nameplate. In fact, it changed the perception of Maruti from a maker of dull and boring cars to one that has excitement and enthusiasm in it.
The swift has all the core values of Maruti that has made it India's numero uno manufacture, read trust, reliability, fine after sales service and brand recognition, yet it targets a go getter at heart, one that is ambitious, young, aspirational and determined to stand out in a crowd.
May 25, 2005. A beginning of a new era. A journey that passed many milestones, broke sales records and made all kinds of car buying people crazy, and continues to do so even today.
But what makes this car unique and stand apart in an overcrowded hatch segment?
Find out all this and more on the swift's Indian journey, coming up next.
Last edited by sidindica : 13th May 2010 at 22:35.
|14th May 2010, 12:59||#26|
Join Date: Dec 2004
Fantastic write up! For a moment, when I saw the title, I thought they have decided to move on from their golden goose. Baleno may have huge fan following here, but Swift is the car that certainly made people change their view on Maruti cars (atleast for me). Hope they plonk in an AT in the 5th anniversary edition! That should make its reach complete!!
|14th May 2010, 13:20||#27|
Senior - BHPian
Join Date: Mar 2007
Thanked: 170 Times
I have a 3 yr old Swift Vxi. Before buying, I changed my mind, a 100 times for 2 months before buying a Swift because though Swift fitted all my other requirements - I really wanted an Automatic. Finally I decided to get the Swift because there was no automatic which fitted my needs in that segment.
If Swift comes out with an Automatic Version, I would trade in. Not immedietelly but within a year or two.
|14th May 2010, 14:33||#28|
Distinguished - BHPian
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: Weekdays@Chennai, Weekends@Kerala
Thanked: 596 Times
Hey sid, nice writeup. The Swift sure has its shortcomings (like any other car), but it surely was one major milestone in Indian motoring given the way the market received it and continues to do so even after 5 years.
Wish there was a 1.6L option available here - that would have been awesome.
Maybe it is still not late for Suzuki to have a top-end version with 1.6L engine option.
And while they are at it, they should also give a ZDi trim with Airbags - don't diesel-drivers require safety ?
|14th May 2010, 15:02||#29|
Join Date: May 2006
Thanked: 0 Times
|14th May 2010, 19:05||#30|
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Join Date: Jun 2007
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Part 5: The Swift's Indian journey
Ever since its launch on May 25, 2005, the swift has had a dream run that many of its competitors can only dream of. Even today, the average period goes for 20-30 days for petrol and about 60-80 days for the blockbuster DDiS. The swift is perhaps currently the number choice amongst the young and the tuner community and its design and simple engineering make it extremely mod friendly.
Its not uncommon to spot a swift with two tone paint jobs, pimped up skirts and spoilers, modified head and taillights and all sorts of engine modifications like custom headers,turbos and kompressors, high performance conical air filters, free flow exhausts, NOS kits, extra wide tyres in wide alloys, high end discos on wheels etc.
The swift's relatively light kerb weight as compared to that of the competition also plays a major role here.
Now that we had talked everything about the car in my previous posts, lets go back to the day of May 25, 2005 when the car was launched to the Indian public:
Jagdish Khattar, the then top honcho of MSIL, had commented on the swiftt's launch, "the swift today heralds a completely new dawn in the history of maruti, as it signals a paradigm shift in the world of compact cars, the swift carries forward all the traditional virtues of Maruti-value for money price, refinement, fuel efficiency, top class after sales service and above all, reliability and trust that has made maruti the numero uno car manufacturer in the past 20 years, yet is targeted at a new generation of customers, a car for a young India, as we target the Indian youth since our country has one of the highest percentage of youth population on earth."
But before that, the car had to be promoted in such a way that it captures the public's attention and what better way to showcase the car in Bollywood with three top class superstars in the helm and a big banner to top it all?
Yes, I am talking about Yashraj Film's Bunty aur Babli which starred three of the country's top stars-Amitabh Bachchan, Abhishek Bachchan and Rani Mukherjee in lead roles. Produced by Aditya Chopra, it showcased a garnet orange swift in a song and a couple of sequences and perfectly geled with the stars' image that time.
Despite the trash storyline and the film getting negative reviews, the EQ (entertainment quotient of the movie) had made it a summer blockbuster which forced me to watch it in a theater, even though I am not exactly a movie buff. This proved to be vital in garnering enough pre release launch hoopla about the car.
The Indian hatchback market was just starting to get mature and the supermini segment-or the B segment of hatches, was created by Hyundai with its Getz 1.3. People perceived its price of 4.5 to 5.25 lakhs as a bit too high and the car was a slow starter, struggling to find buyers despite being a competent product and winner of ACI car of the year 2005.
Expectations are high. can the swift make the cut?
As promised on the morning of May 25, 2005, the swift was unveiled to the Indian public at a shock price band of 3.87 lakh for the base LXI to 5.20 lakh approx IIRC for the top tier ZXI, with middle models VXI being [riced at 4.3-4.5 lakh price band.
Eight colours were offered, classified into two categories:
Three levels of trim were offered and it carried some equipment which were first in a small car.
Apart from the design which looked too futuristic and radical, it was either a love it or hate it affair. Some liked the sporty mini cooper inspired good looks, others called it a frog. Competitors were baffled and resorted to unethical tactics in order to make a dent on swift's sales yet failed miserably.
Since this a swift dedicated thread, I will not waste time in decribing the competitor's reaction, since this is already discussed elsewhere in full detail in the other thread:
The car was selling initially at an average of 3,000-3,800 units per month. But the initial run was not exactly wwithout its fair chare of niggles. Mounting complaints of front suspension eating tyres and poor mileage, some people reporting as low as 8-9 kmpl rang alarm bells at Maruti and the company temporarily halted swift production to rectify these issues.
As always to win back customer trust, maruti recalled all the earlier model swifts and replaced the front suspension lower arm with a new improved design which minimized tyre wear. Silently, too, tweaks were carried out to the engine management system to improve mileage and this regained customer confidence on the brand.
Slowly but surely the swift nameplate was proving to be a profitable venture for Maruti despite hiccups in the first year of production.
Fall 2006 Maruti was giving discounts as high as Rs. 30,000-35,000 to move out stocks of the not so popular ZXI model and Rs. 25,000 for the LXI, as the VXI model continued to be popular.
The swift also faced a peculiar hurdle-below par body rigidity with large panel gaps especially in the trunk lid area. Body rattles under heavy use were becoming increasingly common and despite maruti's improvements in this regard, it continues to persist today, as peer manufacturing pressure means churning out more cars than ever and as a result, loopholes. heavy localization too is blamed for this.
Yet, the swift continued to sell swiftly and by end 2006, sales were hovering at around 4500-5000 units per month.
Meanwhile, behind the curtains, a new engine plant was being built by MSIL at Manesar, at the outskirts of Gurgaon which would start churning out an engine which will not only prove to be critical for the car's long term future, but would also determine the company's profits in the long term.
Q1 2007 will see a launch that will forever change the way that our country sees diesel cars and will also dramatically change the fortunes of another company.
Yes, I am talking about the big gamble known as the Swift DDiS, all about which will be covered in the next part.
Yes, simply because, diesel rocks!
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