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Old 20th October 2012, 08:59   #1
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Smile Our Maruti Swift ZDi! Sold after 3 years, 2 months and 52,000 kms of sheer joy!

Our Maruti Swift ZDi! Sold after 3 years, 2 months and 52,000 kms of sheer joy!-side.jpg
What I love!
  • Sweet interiors in all black with excellent fit and finish and some very good textures. The colour of the dash, seats and door pads are of very good taste. The all black theme with silver accents works very well. I love it and don’t think I will ever be able to put money on any car without black interiors.

  • The ride is very good. The car doesn't crash into potholes at low speed like the old Swift (we had one and I hated the ride over broken tarmac). At highway speed, the ride is compliant but I can sense some movement over not so flat roads. The car sits too tall on 15” wheels and the suspension got a long travel. Also, it feels like the suspension is softly sprung towards the top and it stiffens up in the lower half.

  • The handling is quite good and it is fun to attack roads with very predictable movement from the suspension. Sufficient use of throttle in the power band into a corner will give you the line you want. The well weighted steering comes alive when pushed in the corners and but lacks feedback. I think a tyre upgrade is must. I have found the size (185/65 R15) to be apt but the ZVTV is simply not a good tyre to get the best out of the car. The 185/65 R15 XM2 is in my wish list.

  • Nice gearbox. The shift is like a well-oiled rifle. I use the stick a lot and love it. Though some days on cold starts, the 1st and 2nd is a bit notchy for the initial few KMs. MASS lubricated the plastic linkage under the gear lever after I complained during the 3rd service but still it’s quite coarse on some days. I haven't noticed it for a while now and it was more evident when the car was in Bangalore. I guess the linkages doesn't like low temperatures.

  • Love the simple and classy instrument cluster with temperature gauge. The needles glow red when the ignition is on. The light glows amber for us whereas it glows white in the UK spec Swift. Love the ACC module. The font, the white glow and the small ambient light underneath it to light the cubby hole. It could have been a little brighter though.

  • Excellent NVH – The engine when hot is very quiet with negligible vibration or harshness when puttering around. I think MSIL has done a very good job in sound deadening and with the engine mounts.

  • Effortless Performance in 4th and 5th. Simply hit the accelerator on the highway and the MJD pulls like an electric locomotive. No screaming, no vibration, just a wave of torque. The Swift D is perfect for Kerala style roads. The sheer ability to munch miles is amazing.

  • OEM head unit and speakers, simply nasty! Great sound quality through USB & CD. I haven’t used the aux port yet. The bass is tight and clarity is excellent. I am not much of an ICE guy and I hate to open up the dash and door pads of any car for ICE installation. The aftermarket fellas never fix it back properly and they are the main source of rattles. So, I don’t think I will need to upgrade from this setup. However, the radio reception of the HU could be better and I am not a fan of the dot matrix font of the double din display.

  • The steering wheel is the correct size and the short turning radius (4.8m) makes short work of tight turns and parking. Moreover, the audio control on the wheel is very useful and made of great quality materials. The steering is quite fast as well. So be careful when you reverse, the cars turns in faster than you anticipate.

  • The mild turbo whoosh around 2000 rpm. It evident only when there is not much traffic noise around. It’s very endearing.

  • No rattles! Done 16K+ KM with innumerable interstate runs. Along with improved fit and finish, the compliant suspension also lends out a big helping hand here. This was a big concern when I bought the car.

  • Great ergonomics with all controls at the right place. Finding the best driving position is easy. There is a tilt adjusted steering column and a modest foot rest too.

  • Awesome body hugging front seats. The height adjust has good range though I like to sit low in a car.

  • Height adjustable front seat belts. This should be made mandatory in all cars. The rear seat belts don’t have it and rub against the neck when worn. This is one main reason why people at the rear hate to wear it.

  • Love the one touch lane changer. One touch on the indicator stalk will make the indicator blink 3 times. But it’s a safety hazard when I switch cars. I miss it terribly in our A-star.

  • Apt use of chrome and NO beige. I prefer cars with black interiors. Like they have it in the UK. Here, I think we should at least be given an option to choose between black or beige. Also, I think there is an overdose of chrome in our cars. Thankfully, the only chrome bits in the Swift are the Suzuki logos, the inside door levers, the rings on the roller for AC vents and the stereo/ ACC knobs. It's Perfect!

  • The styling. The side profile is stunning and the front is very smart with great detailing on the grille and subtle chin spoiler. I love the overall silhouette, the long bonnet and the swept back stance works well. The only problem is that the car sits too tall on 15” wheels. The 170 mm ground clearance plays foul here. The rear is quite weird and takes some getting used to. I have debadged the car and it looks much better. I prefer the 2011 Swift to the old one though. I hate the lower part of the doors and the running board which sticks out on the old car. It neatly tucked up in the new one.

  • Very usable bottle holders on all 4 doors. The front doors can take 1 Liter bottles and the rear can hold 1/2 Liter ones. Also, the placement is quite good.

  • Very capable climate control. 5 adults in Chennai summer? No sweat! The blowers do a good job too. They are not noisy at full blow. The ACC is one feature which I had dismissed in the past. I was okay with manual controls for the HVAC in a car. But, it is a very nifty tool and I keep it at 24 Auto most times.

  • Outstanding ground clearance – Even the front mud flaps won’t touch anywhere even when the car is fully loaded. Also, the approach angle is quite good. In the old Swift, the rubber air deflector under the front bumper used to rub the road on inclines or declines. It doesn't in the new one. I keep 31 PSI front and 29 Rear.

  • The very unique stock alloys! I love asymmetry and I love them. I had my reservation when I saw it first in a picture. But it looks great in person, though it is not very easy to clean. The spare wheel is an alloy too.

  • Very good headlights with excellent throw and sufficient brightness. And people on high beam dip when I flash. That's saying a lot.

  • The pop-out cup holder is a party piece. I haven’t seen anyone who hasn't been impressed by the design, texture and the quality of the thing. The way it opens is sublime.

  • The ORVMs are quite big and made of quality material. I like the way it feels when I open or close it manually. It feels very tough and I leave them open when I park so that others mind the space. Also, the electric control knob for the ORVM is holding up pretty well. I use the left hand side quite often and the placement is very good.

  • The wipers (both front and rear) do its job very well, wipes clean and no squealing or judder. (I love to drive in the rain). Though it is not as attractive as the aerotwins on the Fiats.

  • The design of the accelerator pedal, the tail light and the main grille is a nice touch. The grille is a pain to keep clean but I love the detailing on it. One can catch the rear blinker on the ORVM in the dark.

  • The concealed tail pipe for the exhaust. I prefer it that way in a Diesel.

  • Nifty warning chimes to let you know if the bonnet, door or the tailgate is open. Also, the car refuses to be locked if a door is open. If the bonnet is partially open, the alarm gives a double chime when locking the car. Also, the doors auto lock after crossing 30 KMPH. And, it unlocks only on removing the key from the ignition. So, you can turn off ignition without unlocking the car. And there is a warning chime if a door is open (even partially) when the car is moving.
The awesome all black interiors
Our Maruti Swift ZDi! Sold after 3 years, 2 months and 52,000 kms of sheer joy!-optimizedinterior.jpg
The very functional and classy instrument cluster
Our Maruti Swift ZDi! Sold after 3 years, 2 months and 52,000 kms of sheer joy!-optimizedinstrument-cluster.jpg
The debadged rear. In my opinion, the rear looks much better this way
Our Maruti Swift ZDi! Sold after 3 years, 2 months and 52,000 kms of sheer joy!-optimizedrear.jpg
The ACC display is simply beautiful. Can see the ambient light under the module.
Our Maruti Swift ZDi! Sold after 3 years, 2 months and 52,000 kms of sheer joy!-optimizedthe-acc.jpg
The very first picture that we took.
Our Maruti Swift ZDi! Sold after 3 years, 2 months and 52,000 kms of sheer joy!-front.jpg
Blazing Red looks good in the Sun.
Our Maruti Swift ZDi! Sold after 3 years, 2 months and 52,000 kms of sheer joy!-optimizedside-colour.jpg

Last edited by deetjohn : 20th October 2012 at 11:30. Reason: Adding text.
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Old 20th October 2012, 09:36   #2
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Default Re: Our 2011 Swift ZDi, 11 Months & 16000+ KM Review.

What could be better!
  • The over intrusive ECM. I can’t help but ride the clutch at times (in bumper to bumper traffic, during reversing etc.) Engage 1st and you can crawl without using accelerator. But one touch on the brake and the very intrusive anti-stall butts in. It just fights the braking. Take your foot off the brake and the car will lunch forward. 1st, Neutral, 1st, Neutral is what I do in bumper to bumper traffic and is annoying. And till now, I haven’t reversed without riding the clutch. Fully off the clutch and the Swift is just too fast in reverse. It settles down to a comfortable speed after a few yards though.

  • Very poor boot management. No, I am not complaining about the 204L boot space. But on the whole, Maruti has messed it up quite badly. There are no split seats and the boot lip is quite high up. The parcel tray doesn’t go up when you open the tail gate. There are no hanging strings for the parcel tray from the tail gate. This makes the opening quite narrow and its not easy to load things into the boot. One needs to lift the tray manually every time for not so small items. Moreover, the unlock button under the tailgate is at the wrong place. When the car is not locked, anyone can open the boot in a traffic light. And it also plays hide and seek with the security guards at malls, office etc. It is simply the worst of both worlds. MSIL should have provided that electromagnetic button on the dash. Maybe the bean counters saved a bit on the wiring with the current setup. Total bull!

  • Crappy MRF ZVTV rubber. It is just too noisy on the highway and makes the ride quite hard. But it’s one tough tyre to wade over badly designed manhole covers, kerbs, stones and potholes.

  • I feel the 2nd gear is a little too tall. It works well for ghats and traffic lights but the ratio is not ideal for crossing unscientific speed bumps or for picking up speed after coming to an almost halt. You need to slow the car down and shift down to 1st.

  • Average stopping power from the brakes and it also feels a bit wooden. I have complained to MASS many times during service but no use thus far. Also, it is kind of weird to brake in 5th. The car wants to fight you and I always come down to 4th/ 3rd while braking. I am talking about planned braking here.

  • Lack of cubby holes in the central console to store keys, coins, sunglasses etc.

  • It is difficult to get into the rear seats. The high rise running board and narrow rear doors makes life difficult for the elderly. The central tunnel through which the exhaust pipe is routed is quite prominent on the inside.

  • The painting is not up to the mark. I feel the paint is not deep enough and could easily do with an additional layer or two.

  • The panel gaps are not uniform and could be tighter.

  • The wiper and indicator stalks make very plasticity clicks and I hate it, especially the dipper.

  • The MID Range doesn't show the total distance possible for the fuel in tank. The maximum that I get on a full tank of Diesel is 590 KM. It doesn't take the reserve fuel for Range calculation. The MID could do with showing a bit more information like the average speed, consumption during the last trip, date etc.

  • The grille for the lower air dam doesn't protect the condenser and the intercooler from flying debris. Some fins are damaged already.

  • There is a slight vibration on the clutch pedal when the engine is running. Nothing on the gear lever or the steering. I hadn't noticed it and it was a friend of mine spotted it when he drove the car. MASS dismissed the issue stating its normal for all MSIL Diesel cars.

  • The horn pad is too much of a stretch to use. Would love the F430 (yeah, the Ferrari) type horn buttons on the steering wheel. I wonder why no manufacturer in India is bothered to get inspired by that.

  • I miss extra bolstering around natural grip points on the steering like in a Ford or a Fiat.

  • The fog lights are not very useful. And for some reason, they (both front and rear) switch on only when the park lights are on.

  • Flippy key would have been great. Also, the rubber lock/ unlock buttons on the key fob is not well made. It is slowly disintegrating.

  • The glove box design is not very good looking and leaves a glaring gap when open. The one in the i20 is neat.

  • I found the bag hook in the boot to be placed too high. It is not low enough to let a loaded bag to rest on the floor. So, I don’t use it for the fear of breaking it. But it is a good place to hang my microfiber cloth to dry after washing the car.

  • There is no intermittent speed adjust for the wiper and the power windows take an eternity to roll up. On the modern Suzuki cars, the surface of the front windscreen and the A pillar is not kept on the same plane. When wash wipe is used while moving, the water may spread onto the front windows. The bulging A pillars help in channeling this water away the front windows. In the Swift, the inset is not deep enough to prevent this. So water flows onto the windows when wash wipe is used on the highway. In our A-star, the water doesn't flow onto the front window no matter what the speed as the inset is deeper.

Last edited by deetjohn : 20th October 2012 at 11:20. Reason: Adding text.
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Old 20th October 2012, 10:01   #3
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Default Re: Our 2011 Swift ZDi, 11 Months & 16000+ KM Review.

Okay, that’s enough nitpicking now. Now, lets go to the purchase background.

I wanted a car that is fun to drive, reliable, has a great drivetrain and no beige inside. And so far, our Kungipalu (yeah, that’s his name ) has delivered on all those fronts. The only cars that I considered were the Figo TDCi and Punto MJD. I made a booking on the Ford and cancelled it when the engine stall issue came to light. I was heartbroken. I was tracking the car for more than a year in Team BHP and was very positive about it. Knew all the posts and the positives and negatives of the little Ford. Jayded’ thread crash landed on my Ford dreams 3 days after the booking. The Fiat didn’t work out since the dealer didn’t take my PDI request seriously even after multiple follow ups. Also, I didn’t have the courage to go with the brand after that. So waited for the 2011 Swift.

Also, I was torn between the VVT and the DDiS. I drove both cars a couple of times before booking and my heart was all for the ZXi. I was blown away by the car during the TD and preferred it over the Diesel. For all the torque advantage of a Diesel, I still prefer driving a petrol. I don’t know how to explain but petrol engines just click for me. We also have a 2009 A-star ZXi in our garage and I simply love to drive on the winding roads.

Coming back to the purchase, I was not able to make a decision for days. I was caught between 2 excellent cars, the ZXi and the ZDi. But practicality won and we booked a Glistening Grey ZDi. The triple lock down at Manesar made our waiting a lot longer and we also didn't get the colour of our choice. The VDi was available, but I was not ready to let go of the Z variant for the colour. But Blazing Red is not too bad either. It looks absolutely beautiful under the sun and especially so in the rain.

I have completed 4 services with mineral oil changes (1K, 5K, 10K, 15K). Sitting on the fence with synthetic oil. I wondering which is better, 5K with mineral or 10K changes with synthetic. It is too costly to go with synthetic for 5K.

I have kept the car bone stock thus far. Fitting this blue box is in the reckoning.
Our Maruti Swift ZDi! Sold after 3 years, 2 months and 52,000 kms of sheer joy!-optimizedthe-blue-box.jpg
Please excuse my lousy photography skills.

Last edited by deetjohn : 20th October 2012 at 11:28. Reason: Adding text, pictures.
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Old 20th October 2012, 18:50   #4
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Default re: Our Maruti Swift ZDi, 11 Months & 16,000 km Review

Thread moved from Assembly Line. Thanks for sharing.
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Old 20th October 2012, 19:23   #5
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Default re: Our Maruti Swift ZDi, 11 Months & 16,000 km Review

deetjohn,
Congrats on your ZDi and also for a very well balanced review.
Wish you tons and tons of miles !!
About the 2nd gear being tall, I feel exactly the same in my Zxi.
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Old 20th October 2012, 19:53   #6
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Excellent ownership review. Reading this should easily convince someone to buy the Swift.

I concur with your observations about the car barring two points.

1) I find the stock headlamps to be quite ordinary. They are useless on highways. I have considered an upgrade several times but limited night driving has put that on least priority.

2) The wipers in my ZDi are quite noisy. I considered an upgrade but will wait for the next monsoon for that.

The suspension setup and overall excellent fit and finish resulting in rattle free ride are the biggest improvements over the older Swift. I had the older ZXi and it was a rattlebox. The boot space and lack of 60:40 rear split are disappointing. I wish there was no DZire so that Maruti could stretch the Swift all the way to just under 4 meters to maximize space.

I am also sitting on fence with regards to the engine oil. I am planning to stay with mineral and change every 5K km.

Last edited by fuel_addict : 20th October 2012 at 19:54.
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Old 20th October 2012, 19:58   #7
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Default re: Our Maruti Swift ZDi, 11 Months & 16,000 km Review

Great Report deetjohn! The Positives & Negatives are to the point and comprehensive. I am sure it will help people who have listed the swift in their purchase list. Its a well rounded car and it shows in its sales volume. I feel almost 3rd car on the road today is a swift. As you rightly said, the boot space isn't managed well and the lack of split seats and high loading lip make things more difficult.

The Swift was high on my purchase list in 2010 but the price and bare bone features made me consider the figo.

Wish you happy miles on the swift.
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Old 20th October 2012, 20:12   #8
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Default re: Our Maruti Swift ZDi, 11 Months & 16,000 km Review

That made for a very good read. Apart from numerous +ves. which all of here seem to know, the things that bother me a wee bit in Swift & where I feel Maruti should improve or rather may I say 'innovate" are:

- Lower part of the dashboard is too low, my shin strikes against this part while driving, to the level of getting very annoyed.

- Another isuue with front legroom, the central console waterfall tunnel remains in constant touch with my left knee. This also gets bothersome after sometime sitting behind the wheel.

- I own a Vdi & rue the absence of Seat height adjust, the seating is too low for my liking.

- Absence of ABS is sorely felt.

- I do not find much favour for the cars in which one has to squat down to get in. Swift is one of them, low seating means gettin in & out is not comfy.

Apart from these issues which I personally feel day in & day out, others may not be feeling so maybe, its a wonderful car.
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Old 20th October 2012, 21:41   #9
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Default re: Our Maruti Swift ZDi, 11 Months & 16,000 km Review

Congrats dude! I never thought Kunjipalu would break cover into the ownership thread

You have done a great job in detailing the good and bad of the New Swift!

Bring more better pictures please!
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Old 20th October 2012, 22:20   #10
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Great review. Comprehensive and neutral.
And a running of close to 1500 km per month means having bought a diesel is significantly helping your wallet.
Have a great time with your car!
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Old 21st October 2012, 20:55   #11
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Default re: Our Maruti Swift ZDi, 11 Months & 16,000 km Review

Hello Deetjohn,
Nicely written up review !
You have covered almost all the aspects of your ride in your review.
Great to see another fellow TEAM-BHPian from Kerala.
Drive Safe

Last edited by VishnuNarayanan : 21st October 2012 at 21:24.
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Old 22nd October 2012, 09:53   #12
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Default Re: Our Maruti Swift ZDi, 11 Months & 16,000 km Review

Deetjohn

Excellent review and spot on. A few other points that I have from my ownership,

1) Apart from the tall 2nd, I find 3rd a bit taller than the second. Always have to rev to 2200 rpm to upshift to 3rd else the engine lugs.

2) 195/60 R15 Yoko A-drives have made the drive and handling better but the steering feedback could have been a better.

3) Have replaced the front comps, added an amp and sub has taken the music system to the next level

4) I find the headlamps throw for the low beam a bit lower. Have replaced them with phillips rally 100/90 and relays.

5) The a/c is excellent in hot conditions but in highly humid days with lower temperates, the acc cuts off too sooner for my liking..

Last edited by Sridhar K : 22nd October 2012 at 09:56.
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Old 22nd October 2012, 11:18   #13
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Default Re: Our Maruti Swift ZDi, 11 Months & 16,000 km Review

Quote:
Originally Posted by deetjohn View Post
What I love!
[list][*]No rattles! Done 16K+ KM with innumerable interstate runs. Along with improved fit and finish, the compliant suspension also lends out a big helping hand here. This was a big concern when I bought the car.
[*]Very good headlights with excellent throw and sufficient brightness. And people on high beam dip when I flash. That's saying a lot.
Mine Swift ZDI started to rattle within 2000 kms of ownership that too when driven on very good roads and was fixed by MASS. Now the OVRMs rattle on rough surfaces and also in synchronization with the sound beats from OEM door speakers. Bass and Treble is set to +2 and +1 respectively.

The headlights is one of the worst in Swift. IMO our old M800 stock headlamps had better throw even without level adjustment system. Swift headlamps are useless on highways and its very difficult to drive when it rains even in city limits. The beam throw is very low on both the modes. Have set the adjustment level to "0" still its not working for me. I'm forced to use high-beam mode often even during city driving.
Fog lamps are useless.

On the other hand the stock Headlights of my Dad's new WagonR are one of the best in its segment.

Quote:
Originally Posted by fuel_addict View Post
I concur with your observations about the car barring two points.

1) I find the stock headlamps to be quite ordinary. They are useless on highways. I have considered an upgrade several times but limited night driving has put that on least priority.
I second your opinion.
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Old 22nd October 2012, 11:40   #14
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Default Re: Our Maruti Swift ZDi, 11 Months & 16,000 km Review

Congratulations DeetJohn, may you drive a million happy miles with your Kungipalu (what is the meaning of the word?). You have provided a very informative analysis of Swift. I believe Swift is a brand in itself, a brand greater than Maruti, somewhat of a larger than life case. It would be extremely hard to imagine Maruti without Swift.

The picture #3 was fantastic, a hot car and a long long stretch of good tarmac, what else one needs?

I agree about your opinion of ZVTV, damn noisy tires. I have them on Brio and driving on even expressways at speed of 80 is irritating. I try to muffle it by playing music at a somewhat high volume, and keep chatting with my passengers.

Once again, best wishes with your ride and please post more pics (since you do have lot of scenic places down South!!)
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Old 22nd October 2012, 17:11   #15
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Default Re: Our Maruti Swift ZDi, 11 Months & 16,000 km Review

Quote:
Originally Posted by fuel_addict View Post
I concur with your observations about the car barring two points.

1) I find the stock headlamps to be quite ordinary. They are useless on highways. I have considered an upgrade several times but limited night driving has put that on least priority.

2) The wipers in my ZDi are quite noisy. I considered an upgrade but will wait for the next monsoon for that.
Quote:
Originally Posted by beast_within View Post

The headlights is one of the worst in Swift.
Fog lamps are useless.
Completely agree with this. I hate the headlight beam on my Zdi and contemplated a lot on switiching over to 100/90. But limited night driving on highways + not wanting to add relays et all made me stick to xtreme vision. yet to fix them on the car though.

Wipers too am not happy with the stock. One monsoon and its already streaking. I will switch to hella/bosch come the next monsoon.
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