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Old 28th August 2008, 13:51   #1
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hello all, my name is jai, and although i'm a long way from the indian car scene, i get to visit on a regular basis due to my wife being from mumbai. Was introduced to your site by some of your fiat owning members coming onto a site i use The FIAT Forum - For Talk On All Things FIAT, to ask about their uno/siena/palio and of course the forthcoming 500/bravo.

a tiny little bit about me, born and raised in london, married about 10 years ago, serving police officer, wife is a doctor.

car owning history, well by exotic standards it's fairly poor, started out with an old datsun 120y, a classic tangerine vw beetle, and then bought my first fiat uno. for a small car it fits my 6'3" frame perfectly, and i've been hooked every since. just right for nipping in and out of london heavy congestion, low insurance and running costs, and handily a lot of the work is doable yourself. as a result i've had 10 of them! as i've moved from one to another, the wife has taken my older cars, until a couple of years ago we got her something a bit more modern, a 2004 fiat panda, what you'll find under the new 500.

currently i own a pair of uno turbos, the red one is a 1990, the white is a 1989. red is currently resting after a night encounter with a thief rendered her a little damaged, white was bought for 120 (about Rs10000) as a total non runner, a little spannering and some parts later, 137 bhp was unleashed. both of these are the MK1 variant of the model, i think the lines, particularly at the front are cleaner then on the MK2, which is still being produced in places like brazil. both have the single overhead cam engine based on teh original lampredi design, with an IHI turbocharger, electronic ignition, intercooler and all round disc brakes.

and finally, my daily driver, the 1996 mitsubishi pajero junior, 1100cc, 16v, switchable 4wd, and all the comforts of a big car. it looks tiny but can carry a big load, never ever breaks down, and cruises all day at 85mph.

so that's a little of me and my cars, why am i here then? well like i said i regularly come to mumbai to visit the folks, and am always fascinated by the evolving car scene. 10 years ago was the odd older mercedes, an audi here and there, and not really much else of note. i scared myself silly trying to drive here padmini through lokhandwala, it was a combination of traffic, a very heavy car and using a column gear shift! over the years i noticed the cars changing,more imports, more modern home produced machinery, the drivers getting younger, a product of changing economics? some of my wifes old friends were into extracted every last bit of grunt from the cars, one drive on a section of the expressway in a worked over premier was a hell of an experience. last year on a trip out to darjeeling was treated to a night drive by a local guide in some sort of jeep, the roads up the hill were driving heaven, tight bends, hairpins, blind crests, smooth(!) the lot, i want to go back with something brutal!

anyway, as i mentioned we get a few of your guys coming over to the site i use with snippets of information, i thought i'd come the other way and see for myself, soak up a little atmosphere, and hopefully plan a trip that includes seeing a get together.

anyways thats all for now, see you all soon
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Old 28th August 2008, 14:57   #2
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Hey welcome to Teambhp, you'll find a lot of Fiat fans here. Nice garage..hope you can make it one of the meets.

Last edited by dinar : 28th August 2008 at 14:59.
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Old 28th August 2008, 14:59   #3
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Hidy do, boss? Welcome aboard, from a fellow Londoner. Red Uno's a beaut. Enjoy your stay. Rev hard. Peace.
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Old 28th August 2008, 15:51   #4
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Welcome to Team-BHP. which vehicle do you have as your offical police car/bike ? If it's a bike is it a BMW K 1200 GS ?

Oh and 120 quid for 137 Bhp is a steal. However you do spend more than that per year on insurance+parking+ congestion charge, right ?
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Old 28th August 2008, 16:07   #5
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Originally Posted by revvedup View Post
Welcome to Team-BHP. which vehicle do you have as your offical police car/bike ? If it's a bike is it a BMW K 1200 GS ?

Oh and 120 quid for 137 Bhp is a steal. However you do spend more than that per year on insurance+parking+ congestion charge, right ?

well i've just qualified for my response driving (sirens and lights) so i get the use of a vauxhall astra 1.7TD, or a ford transit van.

yep the white turbo was a bargian, needed a few parts, about 500 worth, to make her pass the MOT test, which she did with flying colours, the majority of issues relate to the fact it's a 20 year old italian hot hatch, electrical.....hundreds of gremlins that had to be hunted down and sorted, and for any uno owners in here, you know what i mean, the wiring loom is a total nightmare.

as for running costs, my age, driving experience, clean record and profession make for quite low premiums, 120 for fully comphrensive insurance, i have off street, and ample street parking, i'm out beyond the suburbs, ao although the congestion charge is expensive, i don't pay it, as i never go into the centre (less than an hour away) during charge times, only during off-peak.

the white tub is mainly for a little fun, can be a real road warrior if you're in the mood, also it's a place for me to experiment, as i what i really want is my red one back on the road, so to that end, ebay has become a good friend, as you can see from the attached photos

the wife does despair a little, but, she loves driving them as much as i do, and she has a much heavier right foot than I. you have to hoard parts as buying them through the dealer network, or even motor factors can be very expensive, and occasionally i have bought a car just to strip it.
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Old 28th August 2008, 17:53   #6
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Hi Jai,

hearty welcome to team-bhp,

just love that Red Uno you have , looks classy.... you FIAT fan ? pl also tell us more abt your FIAT experience & thier cars... i am a big FIAT fan too with whatever they have here in india, i own a PALIO 1.2...

once again thanks for joining team-bhp... hope you enjoy your stay...

Sanjay
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Old 28th August 2008, 21:10   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sanjaymugur View Post
Hi Jai,

hearty welcome to team-bhp,

just love that Red Uno you have , looks classy.... you FIAT fan ? pl also tell us more abt your FIAT experience & thier cars... i am a big FIAT fan too with whatever they have here in india, i own a PALIO 1.2...

once again thanks for joining team-bhp... hope you enjoy your stay...

Sanjay
that photo of teh red one was from about 3 years ago, the rear arches had let go, and i'd had new panels welded in, but didnt have time for a paint job, as there was a big gathering of italian cars at the heritage centre, gaydon. i bought that one for about 900, after searching for 2 years for a decent example, most of what i had seen prior was over-priced, bad condition, very bad condition! ripped interiors, one even had a blown engine that the owner tried to pass off as a minor fault. so when red came up, i snapped the sellers arm off to get it, new calipers, discs, pads, braided hoses, silicone hoses under the bonnet, wheels and tyres, as well as a complete change of suspension including bushes totally transformed teh ride and handling.

all my others unos were also mk1s, non turbos, generally was the 70sx variant, 1301cc sohc engine. a variety of colours, silver, grey, blue, but always the same interior, brown cord velour!!

when it's working, i can't think of a better supermini to blast around in, roomy, even for me, comfy, and always willing to rev round to the redline, modern cars do have their luxuries, and i can apprieciate that, but, there's nothing like being directly invlved, no ABS, ESP, ETC to make decisions for you, or rein you in on a spirited drive. you nail a series of corners and you fell great, get it wrong and it's a long wait for a towtruck, and you know it was all on you.

the downside is that italian build quality, i have no idea, must investigate, of the indian built uno quialty. but the european ones, esp like my mk1, are at times shocking, no real underbody protection, galvanising was a future development, creaking interior trim, electrics that although german in orgin may as well have been constructed by stevie wonder. and worst of the lot, the actual metal itself, cheap cheap cheap communist sourced tin, that folds under a childs pressure, and will melt under heavy rain

as a result it has broken down more times in a month than my japanese pajero has in 2.5 years, actually the pajero has never broken down, it just keeps on going.

i know a little grim reading, but, a cold crisp morning, suns just coming up, the drive into work, cold air really getting the turbo going.....nothing like it
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Old 30th August 2008, 15:02   #8
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Hello, welcome aboard.

That's the 1.4 turbo engine isn't it? Been known to hold some high boost, from what I hear. Pity they didn't sell it in India.
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Old 30th August 2008, 15:09   #9
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Welcome to the forum. You have my dream car in your garage, a Uno Turbo!
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Old 30th August 2008, 15:11   #10
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Hello, welcome aboard.

That's the 1.4 turbo engine isn't it? Been known to hold some high boost, from what I hear. Pity they didn't sell it in India.
nope both run with the 1301cc block, the mk2, same body as that made in india, has the 1372cc, the earlier engine is tough, forged bits and responds well to tuning and extra boost
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Old 2nd September 2008, 13:52   #11
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Originally Posted by jai-uno-t View Post
well i've just qualified for my response driving (sirens and lights) so i get the use of a vauxhall astra 1.7TD, or a ford transit van.
Welcome to TBHP. So when do you graduate to Volvo's and BMW's ? I guess only the motorway cops have them?
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Old 2nd September 2008, 14:35   #12
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Welcome to TBHP. So when do you graduate to Volvo's and BMW's ? I guess only the motorway cops have them?
cheers for the welcome all.

nope, even us locals have them too, our borough has 2 bmws, but generally as traffic do the main roads and motorways and have a lot of specialist equipment to carry they have only the bigger cars. for general local policing the astras are fine, maybe a few more years and the advanced course for driving those will become available, to give you an idea of what's involved have a read through

Amazon.co.uk: Roadcraft: The Police Driver's Handbook: Great Britain. Home Office: Books

maybe not quite as relevant in the hustle and bustle of indias urban areas but anything to improve your skills can't be a bad thing.
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