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Old 18th July 2013, 21:01   #1
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Red face Musings of my first love: Chevrolet Spark!

Flashback: 26th july 2005



" And class, remember, yes in french is called 'oui' pronounced as 'we'....."

Simple_car calling simple_car: Lovely rains. You know monsoon is my favorite season. It gives life to everything. Plants, animals, diseases...

But its raining a lot today. Seems like I will have to wear those stupid pants my aunt gave me on my last birthday tomorrow(it takes a lot of time for the clothes to dry in monsoon, and my wardrobe, for the lack of better word is best described as modest). I hate those things..

A peon appears from nowhere: "madam ni sangitlya ahe balkanna jaldi sodayla sathi. Paoos khupach ahe" (madam has ordered to leave the kids early. Its raining heavily)

I left the college alone (was the odd one stupid enough to take french) wading my way through knee deep water. My college was in Vile parle east, and I lived in borivali. I reached the station only to know that the trains are also stuck. Called up dad, who said he was in vile parle west for some work and that we would leave together in our skoda octavia. I started again to weave my way to his office. For those who know bombay, will know that vile parle west is worst than east as far as height from sea level is concerned. As I was walking, water slowly came upto my waist level. Wow, I thought, wonder how we'll be able to go home in this situation (looking at the jams and cars which had already be stranded. Some SUV owners were kind enough to give a lift to children, but that was of no use since the cars weren't moving anywhere)
Little did I know then I wouldn't meet my family for 2 days. The octavia was lost to the floods, and declared as total loss.



Fast forward: December 2007



Last year was terrible for us. The floods had caused severe damage to our offices and machines. Finances were very very tight, and I had just started my graduate college.

One evening.

Dad: "I think we'll have to buy a new car now."
We had a toyota qualis which had survived the floods doing its regular duty with dad.
Me: "But, why do you want a new one? And more importantly, how do you intend to pay for a new car?"
Dad: "I don't like travelling much in the qualis. I'll sell off the qualis. We'll buy 2 new cars. One small one right now, and a a car with good ground clearance (remember, we needed one for wading through floods which we expected every monsoon) later once the office is functioning to full capacity."
Me: "Your choice. Let me know what you are thinking."
Dad: "I have heard, the fabia is getting launched soon, I'll buy that. What do you think?" (dad is a skoda fanboy)
Me: "Whatever. Its not like you are going to listen to me anyways. But I like the new spark which has been launched. Remember, you like the matiz, your friend drove around in. Its the same car, only the badge has been changed, and hopefully a little more reliable as well."
Dad: "Skoda Fabia it is.."




Few months later


The fabia was launched; dad was the first person to take a test drive of the tdi model at the then newly launched JMD showroom in navi mumbai. Even before they did the customary pooja of test drive model.


Later in the evening:

Dad: "I have booked a test drive tomorrow of the spark. Want to join?"
Me: "What about the fabia? I thought I'll be seeing one in our building tomorrow?"
Dad: "Its pathetic. Too many vibrations. And floor the accelerator, that engine just disappoints. Too noisy. Rest of the car though, is superb."
Me : "Ok. I'll join you. It'll be the first time you took me along for a test drive too."

Next day, after the test drive.

Dad: "Ok, so much time for the abs model to be delivered?"
Salesman: "Sir, 3 months. We have a stock of the next highest model available though. The LT for immediate delivery if you want."
Dad: "Send me the papers tomorrow. I want the car in 3 days tops."
Salesman: "Sir, that is not possible. It will take at least a week for the formalities to be completed, you know insurance, paperwork etc. And sir, you know how the RTO works, it will take 3 days only in the RTO!"
Dad: "Ok. I am buying the insurance from you. And please add that music system which I saw in the showroom. Now how long will it take for the car to be delivered?"
Salesman: "You'll have the car day after tomorrow, afternoon 3.00 p.m."

2 days later, the spark arrived.
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Old 18th July 2013, 21:14   #2
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Default The Experience

Other cars considered:
None. We usually know which cars we want. Never had a confusion.
Just a heads up for others; the swift, santro, alto, wagon r, getz were all within our budget. Never considered.

I had learnt driving in an old rickety run down esteem for 2 months, before I was given this car. So, with that as a reference point, I drove the car for the first time while going to the marketplace with my mother.
.
.
.
And I fell in love.




Initial impressions:

A) Likes:
1. What a steering! Not as light as a santro, very direct, and more than all of that, just makes me smile (priceless)
2. Good power (remember, I was graduating from an esteem which must have had not more than 40 hp)
3. Awesome brakes
4. This thing loves being thrown around. Like a dart no less!
5. The center mounted speedo (yeah, I loved this arrangement a lot)
6. Felt quite robust.
7. The styling. Just brings a smile to my face every single time I see her

B) Dislikes:
1. The stupid grey interiors. The dash just felt like a big grey slab. That said, I prefer this color over beige in the newer sparks
2. Switch the A/C on and there is a distinct laziness in the engine.
3. Bad space for the rear occupants (wasn't much concerned about this since I would only be driving it)

But all in all, I was ebullient!

I will be concentrating more on my experiences with the car rather than pics.

This car was my first love. No doubts. I drove it and cared for it like a baby (note to self: need to show such emotions more for the real human babies)
I wasn't aware of anything like running in period of the engine, or for that matter that its theoretically better to have the oil changed during the 2500km general check service, or anything like that for that matter. But fortunately, until 2500kms I babied the car too much.



2500kms to 0 kms
No no, just because I am bad at math doesn't mean that I am bad at numbers (in fact quite good). You read it right.
At 2500 kms, the first service was done and the speedometer console was replaced under warranty (the speedo failed). The new speedo came with 0kms reading.

3600kms & my first mistake
These were the days when I was crazy for alloy wheels! I just wanted a set for my car. So, my b'day present from my dad was a set of alloys (Mom was p****d, since my wardrobe needed an overhaul. But I wasn't listening)
And here comes my first mistake. Since I was a noob in this area, I just went to the local alloy wheel shop, chose a set of alloys and got them installed. No change in diameter, but there was an increase in J width. I didn't change the tyres as well (stock were MRF ZVTV). Just wanted that cool alloy look.
The increase in the J width caused one big problem. The rear wheels scraped the tyre well under full load while going over bad roads. I spoke to the tyre guy, and he washed his hands off the incident. I let it be as is since the car thoughout its life has been fully loaded only twice till date.
The only silver lining: the alloy wheel set consisted of 5 alloys (unlike the 4 which you get in the market nowadays) and the pcd was correct (I found out later)

10,000 kms
Uneventful. Had a routine service at A.S.S., I blindly trusted the S.A. and got all jobs done recommended by him. Second mistake. Costed me 3k.

So, I had a good hang of the car now, and used to drive it only once a week. This is the phase when I started to understand the true good points of the car. By now I had driven the i10, wagon R, and santro quite extensively. Me and my friends used to race each others cars during the night at a desolated place.
Shh... shh.. don't tell on me
I had my first scratch, the first ding and also my first road rage incidents by now. The left hand side ORVM bore the brunt of my road rage. I still haven't replaced it to remind me of my foolishness whenever I drive this car. It vibrates when going over undulations. I'll put up my final impression of the car in the end.

15000 kms and the painful separation

If anybody had told me that I would be separated from my love after just 15000kms, I wouldn't have touched this car at all. Dad decided to hand over the car to one of our senior employees, as a reward for his services. I had my first breakup. Sure, the car would be seen by me regularly; sure, I would still be maintaining the car; sure, I could drive it whenever I wanted to, BUT, it didn't feel the same. I lost interest totally, and ignored it from then onward.
We got ourselves a 2nd hand getz (mint conditon, with full service history). The getz just didn't make me happy, although everybody else were very pleased with this car. I lost interest in driving, and continued my life, travelling around in trains.

50,000 kms and reunion

My exams had been postponed, and I was studying in my room.


tring tring, tring tring



Me: hello?
Dad: I am buying 2 new cars for our employees and selling of the getz. The spark needs some maintenance. You'll handle it?
Me: Why don't you sell of the spark? And why are you selling of the getz?? Its running fine and if you sell of the getz, what will you go around in?
Dad: sparks loan is not yet over. Should have gone for a 3 year loan. But what is done is done. I'll travel in spark for few months, then we'll buy a new car. But I am currently getting a good deal if I sell of the getz.
Me: ok. But I don't know how bad the condition of the spark is. It may take a weeks time to get it in full running condition
Dad: No. I'll give you 3 days. Make sure its in a driveable condition.
Me: ok. But I'll need a day to evaluate whats wrong with the car. Give me 4 days.
Dad: ok

Mom: Why are you smiling?
Me: Spark's coming home!
Mom: So? I thought you had broken up with her
Me: yeah. But, I still feel so happy.

That evening, I was reunited with the car.

I was smiling and reminiscing

Btw.. we didn't end up selling the getz (don't know why myself)





The car had suffered quite a lot in the hands of the employee. But, it was repairable. There was a huge dent in the rear bumper. The rear doors were jammed. All 4 shocks were shot. The brakes were shot. Had undergone only 2 services since I last parted with her. The clutch was shot too. The initial lot of cars had a very common issue with regard to muffler rusting. Mine had it too.
But, the engine was still silky smooth, the car still darted around, and more than anything else, she still made me happy.

I gave the car to nikhil auto workshop in goregaon. Following things were done:
1. Clutch overhaul. 3rd mistake. Only clutch plate change would have sufficed
2. all 4 shocks replaced
3. Brakes changed. Front pads only, along with disc skimming. 4th mistake.
4. S.A. told me there was some minor leakage in a pipe connecting the coolant tank. Replaced. 5th mistake. Taken for a ride.
5. Alternator/fan belt changed. The car had the screeching sound, which is reported quite frequently by spark owners.
6. I let the muffler remain as it is, since it now gave the car a more sporty note, and besides, the above repairs had cut a huge hole in our pockets.

The following things were not done (due to my ignorance):
1. Spark plug change (as per schedule)
2. Coolant change (as per schedule)

After, the car came home, I realized that the above 2 things weren't done. I went to a local garage here, and inspected the spark plugs. They were clean, a little soot here and there, but didn't look quite serious. The mechanic proclaimed that I could use it till next service. The coolant change, the mechanic told me that the coolant's color is fine. Wish I could kick my *** for listening to him. 6th mistake

Last edited by Simple_car : 18th July 2013 at 22:07.
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Old 18th July 2013, 21:30   #3
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Default Present day

52000kms and the breakup. Again!

The petrol diesel price difference was now at 20 Rs. per litre. Mom and Dad's combined running dictated that we get a diesel for our daily needs. Dad announced that we were getting the figo (again, I wasn't consulted), and that spark had to leave now.
I managed to convince him to make it as a backup car for anyone to use. You see, we were facing a lot of issues with our family's current lot of cars. I told him to keep the car at another place, and use it only when one of the other cars broke down. The fact the loan closure would take a few more months convinced him.

Whew!

At least the car was still with us.


75000 kms and the chevy quality shows its true colors

Time went by, and I didn't see the car for well over a year. Well, i did see it once, but only to replace the front 2 tyres which had gone bald. It had barely run 1000kms in 6 months
One fine day, I was called to check the condition of the car as the new driver felt that the car needed service. Little did I know that I would be entering into a nightmare.

The problems:
1. The car had covered 25k kms in 6 months. No service done. Great! Mom didn't think to inform me that the car had replaced the duty of one of my relatives bolero which was giving him a lot of problems.
2. The clutch was shot again! (but expected. The driver is know to use it judiciously)
3. There was suspension noise again! (this I didn't expect, since even though the driver uses the clutch judiciously, he is careful while negotiating the roads)
4. The A/C was shot
5. The car was accelerating while depressing the clutch. The engine maintained the revs at higher level. I couldn't figure out the cause for this, but at this stage it was manageable.
6. The alternator belt was begging for a replacement.
7. Power steering belt was nowhere to be seen. But surprisingly, there was no change of feel in the steering
8. Rear wiper stalk broken
9. The hydraulic arms which hold the boot open were shot.

All above points pointed to poor quality of parts used. I maintain quite a lot of cars infact. I am well aware of how the respective drivers use the cars. Of all the cars which are maintained by me, I have concluded that chevy's parts just don't last long enough. Or rather they are not abuse friendly.

Why? Read on...

I went to the newly opened JMD andheri workshop, with a sense of doom. I knew that this would be a final straw for my parents. They will sell it off. I just had a bad feeling about it. Met the parts manager there and a chat with him. Quote for proper service, front suspension overhaul (I didn't feel that the shocks needed replacement), Muffler replacement, throttle body replacement, clutch overhaul (didn't budge when I told him that I only want to replace the clutch plates) and some miscellaneous things was in the range of 70-80k with labor.


Gulp!



Sat down at home and thought this through:
1. I'll need a good mechanic. This car will have to be serviced outside only.
2. The clutch will hold through for few thousand kms (though it was on its last legs). I could delay this replacement for a couple of months.
3. Muffler replacement could be put to hold
4. I'll skip the shocks replacement.
5. The throttle problem was still manageable at this point. I'll dig into this later and find a solution on my own.

Next two days was spent by me taking the car around to show to different mechanics. I must have visited 5 different garages in my area. All of them were either giving jugaad solutions (I hate this), or I was suspicious of their claim that they would source original parts for the same. I know all of them source parts from suppliers in opera house area, and I know that it has an equally big market for spurious spares. I'll have to trust one guy and go ahead.

Called up few friends for help, and I got none. Called up people I hadn't spoken for over a year, and finally an old acquaintance (whom I remember being into car modification vaguely) referred me to a new chap. He warned me upfront that he's a little bit more expensive than other guys but guarantees original parts. Met this chap next morning, and first impressions were a little disappointing. A little..

He was an enthusiast, but didn't have his own place. But I kinda liked him. Gut feeling told me to trust him. Decided to take the plunge. Decided to repair it step by step, since the car was needed in between

Step 1:
1. Change all oils: engine, brake, coolant, etc.
2. Change all filters and all belts
3. Change spark plugs
4. Change front brakes
5. A/C checkup would take some time. Could live without it. Let it be.

I also had to replace 3 tyres this time since the rear 2 were bald by this time. Also one of the alloys shattered the day before. Good thing that I had a 5 alloy wheel set. Bought a steel rim, fitted it with a brand new tyre, and used it as stephney.

Step 2: I won't be revealing the costs here. Feel free to message me for the same
1. Front suspension overhaul (I was reluctant for the shocks, but decided to go ahead. The mech told me it was best to do it)
2. Clutch plates changed
3. Alternator overhaul (bearings and motors). This was done since the car had broken down the day before, and the local mech in the area did a shoddy job of the repair
4. Throttle body problem had now increased many fold. It was now dangerous to drive the car. This new mech asked for a day to see where the problem was. Called me up the next day and said the LLR (I forget the full form now) was faulty. Rest, the cable and things were fine. This unit is unique in the sense that it will break down completely if you try to open it up. So it has to be ordered. It would take a few days for him to source it, but it could be done. Gave the go ahead (was now getting suspicious). He assured me that in case this doesn't work out, he won't charge me for the same.

Step 3:
1. The LLR module was replaced, but the throttle problem persisted. The mech said to give him some time to figure out the cause.
2. The hydraulic mounts were replaced.
3. The rear brake lining were replaced.
4. Ordered the rear wiper arm and wiper.
5. The mech said (after a few hours) that the muffler (which was now eaten by rust) was the cause. Replacement was necessary. I told him, if this doesn't work out, I'll not pay him at all.

Step 4:
1. Muffler replaced. Problem reduced by a huge extent, but still present. The mech said to drive around for 100-200 kms after which it will settle down. This turned out to be true.
2. Rear wiper arm was of the newer spark, didn't fit, reordered it.

All in all, a goodexperience. I trust his diagnostic skills atleast. As far as parts genuineness is concerned, only time will tell. I have bitten the bullet.


80,000kms

The mech recommended a 5k kms service interval initially for 2 services, since there was some sludge seen by him (I doubt it though). Anyways I followed it, and the car was given for 80k kms service to him again. I don't recommend the usual practices followed at service stations (read--> throttle body cleaning, engine flush). They aren't as effective as a premature oil changes to remove the sludge.
Btw, the rear wiper arm still hadn't been procured. The part arrived at my place just a few days back. Have yet to fit it back.

1. The A/C compressor bearing failed. Decided to live with it. Replace it next year.
2. The power steering belt was shredded. Replaced it. I asked about this quite premature replacement and wear of the belt, but the mech claimed that the damage was purposefully done by someone else

Next day, again the power steering belt was shredded. But the car was far away from home. Spoke to the local mech, who said that the A/C bearing was interfering with the belts function. Instructed him to remove the compressor assemble totally. Also replace a new belt

Next day, again the power steering belt was shredded. This was getting a bit too weird. I decided to let it be and had the belt removed. The steering feel doesn't change at all anyways. So its been that way since.
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Old 18th July 2013, 22:22   #4
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Default Final impressions

I have driven this car for at max 20k kms of the total mileage covered. But I have been solely responsible for its maintenance. Also, I have put in my impressions of comparisons with different cars that I have driven. Here are my final impressions:

Likes

1. Engine
Its a 63hp 4 pot engine. At idle, its difficult to know whether its running or not. When you are in the mood to race, the engine note is a nice one, nothing great, but nice nonetheless.
Has a good low and mid range power, top end is bad.
The i10 in my opinion has the best of engines. Wagon R's engine, I would rate next to spark. Santro has only 1 advantage, i.e. low end torque.

2. Handling
The car is a neutral handler.
Handling is one of the make or break decisions for me and my family. All our past cars and present ones have one common thing. They are good/neutral handlers.
i10 and santro fare very poorly in this aspect. The VW twins are definitely better. Wagon R is quite similar to spark.

3. Steering
I like the steering. Its direct. No feedback. Not as light as the hyundai's, and polo. I still cannot point out the exact reason why I like it so much though

4. Rattle free nature
The car has no rattles till this stage. This is a very pleasant surprise. Its not been exactly babied.

5. Robust build
Overall, a very robust build. It takes on the abuse related to city driving pretty well. The kind of accidents this car has been through, it has always been the other car which managed to get damaged more badly. No, no major accidents; just the occasional bump, scratch and bike tussles.

6. Looks
Purely subjective. I love it till date.

7. Center console speedo
Again subjective. I love it though. I for one do not mind at all that it doesn't have a tachometer. It looks simple.

What I wish would have been better OR Dislikes (for other people)

None of the following points are my personal dislikes. Just that they should have been better in my opinion.

1. Interior
Plastics are hard, but durable. There is an excess of grey color in my car. Yes, there is that occasional silver inserts on center console, and window areas BUT these silver inserts have faded and now revealed their true color i.e. black. Looks ugly
That said, I prefer this color scheme to the beige found in newer sparks (which is a big pain to maintain)

2. Space management
I am no expert in car design, hence cannot comment on what the original designers thought of while making the car. All I wish that the management would have been a wee bit better. Like rear door bottle holders. An little scooped out space in frond dash (which looks like a slab).
The space for rear passengers is limited (as expected from a small car), but my hand grazes the thigh my my co passenger when changing gears from 1st to 2nd (can't wait to let my girlfriend sit here. One of the reasons why I love this car)

3. Paint quality
Not so good. has faded a lot over these years.

4. Road noise insulation
Its bad. You'll hear a lot of tyre noise. Be prepared of this. The hyundai's are better in this regard.

5. Mileage
I get 11-12 in bombay traffic, with A/C off all the time. Highway drives give at max 17. Note, I knew the chevy is not going to give a good mileage. A maruti gives better mileage with me on the wheel. Can't comment on hyundai or vw twins

6. Chevrolet car parts quality
This has been bugging me a lot. I have doubts in this area. My reasons are as follows:
a) I maintain cars of different brands, and I know the driving styles of respective drivers in and out. The parts failing in chevy do not fail on other cars, with the same drivers and similar roads they drive on. This is just my observation
b) During my A.S.S. visits, the spark owners whom I interacted with presented with similar complaints. The shocks of all the cars were being replaced at <50k kms value. The throttle body problem was existing in cars of 2 owners whom I spoke to. The muffler rust issue was also known. Although I agree that my data is very small, yet the trend is similar. Would like to hear comments of others on this aspect

I would like to take a moment and thank someone here.
I am talking about the mechanic who helped me out and get the car back together.
I had never heard of him, was referred to him by an acquaintance whom I had interacted only thrice in my life. And he is responsible for introducing me to the world of team-bhp. A world, I never knew existed. Team-bhp reignited the spark (pun intended) in my otherwise monotonous life.

Here's a BIG THANK YOU to bhpian jatinpatel@wagenwerkz!
Jatin didn't know about the history between me and my car. Jatin, if you ever read this, now you know why.
Thanks a lot and here's me wishing you all the best for your endeavour.

Here, I would like to ascertain one thing. I didn't know jatin or team-bhp before. I took the plunge purely on my gut feel (not to mention, he's near my age as well. I support young guys, whom I feel are good). He has his shortcomings, some of which I have already pointed out to him.

Thanks for reading,

Drive safe,
Simple_car

Last edited by moralfibre : 20th July 2013 at 07:09. Reason: As requested
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Old 19th July 2013, 11:28   #5
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Default Re: Musings of my first love: Chevrolet Spark!

Thread moved from the Assembly Line (The "Assembly Line" Forum section) to the Long-Term Ownership Section. Thanks for sharing!
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Old 19th July 2013, 15:02   #6
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Default Re: Musings of my first love: Chevrolet Spark!

Good to see that you still love your car in spite of it requiring so much of parts replacement and time. I bet you must have spent almost the same amount of money that would have got you another used spark in good condition.I have a Oct 2007 spark run almost 80000 kms still serving us happily although the FE is a issue since beginning. I have had my share of parts replacements and service center dramas but touch wood my replacement parts list is almost 1/4 of what yours is.Its still running on its original clutch but now getting a bit hard.

Just like you, I still like driving it because of its steering feel and handling. Cheers to you for having such a big heart of still maintaining it as I am aware of Chevy's A ** and no body outside it is keen to work on these.
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Old 19th July 2013, 22:22   #7
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Default Re: Musings of my first love: Chevrolet Spark!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Simple_car View Post
Well blow me down!
I have a 2009 Spark (beige interior) and completed 62K KM on ODO. Thanks for the review, I can very well relate to your some of the experience you have faced.
I have no clue about suspension noise in my Spark. GM A.S.S have checked and tried to fix it multiple times but no success. Replaced struts multiple times, ball joints once. It works fine few hundred KM after every service again goes back to square one.
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Old 19th July 2013, 22:23   #8
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Default Re: Musings of my first love: Chevrolet Spark!

This is the love for your car inspite of it's shortcomings! Hats off Simple_car. This is a good example of love for your car which I personally have for all my cars inspite of their niggles (XUV oh oh!) or dynamic problems (Verna). Man! You really have the patience and love to tolerate it's visits for repairs. Now, the only thing to complement this informative thread is a set of good pictures. Come on! Even we want to see your love! All in all, a good city hatch which meets most of the requirements. Is it still with you or is it sold now?

P.S. Your writing style is pretty good!

Keep revvin'
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Old 19th July 2013, 22:25   #9
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Default Re: Musings of my first love: Chevrolet Spark!

If not anything else I would like to congratulate you for the sheer love, attachment and commitment that you have shown to your car, quite touching. It comes from a person who feels the same about his rides. I am still heart-broken and sulking after my dad sold our 1st car, a M800 2 years ago(exactly 2 hrs after I left home to take up my 1st job). It was with us for 11 yrs,82k kms. I still nudge him to buy it back if possible and have unsuccessful till now. I know how it feels to see even a small scratch on your car when you have loaned it to someone and I can understand your feelings.

May you have some uneventful years and many more happy miles with the car. And please do justice to your 1st love, do post some pics.
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Old 19th July 2013, 22:54   #10
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Default Re: Musings of my first love: Chevrolet Spark!

Quote:
Originally Posted by kkg View Post
I have a Oct 2007 spark run almost 80000 kms still serving us happily although the FE is a issue since beginning. I have had my share of parts replacements and service center dramas but touch wood my replacement parts list is almost 1/4 of what yours is.Its still running on its original clutch but now getting a bit hard.
Thanks a lot kkg sir,
Not as much as the price of second hand one, but close nonetheless. Glad to know about your spark. Let me know if I can help you out.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Latheesh View Post
I have no clue about suspension noise in my Spark. GM A.S.S have checked and tried to fix it multiple times but no success. Replaced struts multiple times, ball joints once.
Have you tried out a reputed local mechanic? Mine had the same suspension sound problems till I showed to jatin.

Quote:
Originally Posted by S@ndy View Post
This is the love for your car inspite of it's shortcomings! Hats off Simple_car. This is a good example of love for your car which I personally have for all my cars inspite of their niggles (XUV oh oh!) or dynamic problems (Verna). Man! You really have the patience and love to tolerate it's visits for repairs. Now, the only thing to complement this informative thread is a set of good pictures. Come on! Even we want to see your love! All in all, a good city hatch which meets most of the requirements. Is it still with you or is it sold now?

P.S. Your writing style is pretty good!

Keep revvin'
S@ndy
Thanks a lot S@andy sir,
I am actually very embarrassed to post the photos for 2 reasons:
1. The car is in a very beat up condition. Not upto team-bhp standards anyways.
2. My only camera is my mobile phone. I am not into photography. Infact, when I requested the moderators to shift the post for public viewing, I specifically mentioned that I don't have any photos with me at all.
That said, I'll post some customary photos when she comes back for its service in a month's time.
3. Of course, it's still with me. I have defied financial odds to keep it at home.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ashis89 View Post
If not anything else I would like to congratulate you for the sheer love, attachment and commitment that you have shown to your car, quite touching. It comes from a person who feels the same about his rides. I am still heart-broken and sulking after my dad sold our 1st car, a M800 2 years ago(exactly 2 hrs after I left home to take up my 1st job). It was with us for 11 yrs,82k kms. I still nudge him to buy it back if possible and have unsuccessful till now. I know how it feels to see even a small scratch on your car when you have loaned it to someone and I can understand your feelings.

May you have some uneventful years and many more happy miles with the car. And please do justice to your 1st love, do post some pics.
Thanks Ashis89 sir,

As I have already mentioned above, I'll put up some customary pics at then end of the month. I am not much into photography. You'll see that clearly, when my other ownership reports come up.
Here's wishing you a reunion with your love.

Thanks,
Simple_car
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Old 23rd July 2013, 15:27   #11
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Default Re: Musings of my first love: Chevrolet Spark!

I too have owned and loved a Spark (used to call it Sparky) till very recently. It was great to read about a Spark from someone who obviously loves cars a lot. Your write up is very good. Your love for cars and your sparking sense of humour shine through!

The Spark engine is really good. Super quiet and adept at doing city runabouts. It was the first car I owned, so I have special memories.

Having said that, I agree that it's parts seem to need very frequent replacements. I had to get the entire clutch assembly (not sure if I am being technically accurate) replaced. Brake pads and other brake components also seemed to wear out very frequently. The A.S.S. was also adept at making an ass of me and I am sure they have cheated me royally over the years.
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Old 27th July 2013, 14:06   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Top-Gear View Post
The Spark engine is really good. Super quiet and adept at doing city runabouts.
Having said that, I agree that it's parts seem to need very frequent replacements. I had to get the entire clutch assembly (not sure if I am being technically accurate) replaced. Brake pads and other brake components also seemed to wear out very frequently.
Thank you top-gear sir,

The A.S.S. in Bombay just love to replace the entire clutch assembly even though maximum no. of times only the clutch plates require change:(
I have just put in a new set of brake pads after just 13.5k kms. I know the car is driven hard, but still in other cars under similar driving conditions, I change at 20-30k kms interval.


90,000 kms update

Currently odo stands at 88k kms (actually: 90.5k kms)
Car was serviced by jatin@wagenwerckz

Bad news continue to haunt this car and my pocket

1. The brake pads had to be replaced again. After just 13.5k kms.
2. The suspension is now a little 'loose'. No, there are none of those ball joint/tie rod noises, just that it doesn't feel taut like I prefer.
3. The left headlamp has conked off.
4. The central locking has a mind of its own.
5. Now, comes the worst part. While trying to remove the right front wheel for brake change, one of the bolts was found to be jammed. Took 2 days of welding to remove it. Was considering cutting the alloy, but fortunately the nut finally came out. But the alloy now has marks of the chisels which were used, and is now blackened due to constant use of welding torches. Looks bad.
6. The right wheel bearing had to be replaced.
7. Rest, oils and filters were changed. Rear wiper which was ordered has been put back.
8. There was a mis-communication in the earlier post. The power steering belt and the compressor is still certainly in its place, my fault for stating otherwise. But I was told so by my drivers, and... its a complicated story, very difficult to explain here. I will now have to have a good chat with these guys.
9. A faint bearing noise is heard. I think its of the compressor assembly.

I am happy with jatin's work till now, except for his labor, which I find to be a tad expensive.

Sigh....the things we do for love.

Thanks,
Simple_car
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Old 27th July 2013, 15:13   #13
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Default Re: Musings of my first love: Chevrolet Spark!

An article that I read today on jalopnik:

Source: http://jalopnik.com/why-do-you-love-your-car-926765576

An excerpt from that article:
It's not really about the biggest, baddest, fastest, or most expensive car. It's not about being flashy or showing off your money. It's just about liking cars, no matter what kind of cars you like. Sometimes, others may not understand why you like a car so much. Sometimes, you may not even understand why you like a car so much. But none of that matters; all that matters is that you like the car, and having it makes you happy.

That, right there, is automotive enthusiasm at its absolute purest. And you, Alfred Morris - you are my kind of automotive enthusiast. I bow to you. I know next to nothing about football, but if they sell your jerseys, I would be proud to buy and wear one for that reason alone.

Rock on, Mr. Morris.


Can totally relate to Mr. Morris, who refurbished his mazda.

Thanks,
Simple_car
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Old 29th July 2013, 16:23   #14
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Default Re: Musings of my first love: Chevrolet Spark!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Simple_car View Post
Thank you top-gear sir,

The A.S.S. in Bombay just love to replace the entire clutch assembly even though maximum no. of times only the clutch plates require change:(
I have just put in a new set of brake pads after just 13.5k kms. I know the car is driven hard, but still in other cars under similar driving conditions, I change at 20-30k kms interval.

Bad news continue to haunt this car and my pocket

1. The brake pads had to be replaced again. After just 13.5k kms.

Sigh....the things we do for love.
Simple_car, you said it.

Chevy A.S.S guys are a bunch of untrustworthy fellows. I suffered for my lack of mechanical knowledge. I don't understand why brake pads would need to get changed so often. I had also confronted them, to be told, "..oh, was it changed last time? Let me check..."

As you aptly said, ..."the things we do for love...! "
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Old 29th July 2013, 20:53   #15
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Default Re: Musings of my first love: Chevrolet Spark!

Hey, simple_car

Glad you still have your car and love every bit of it.

Can you please post the picture of you car?(Especially alloys and interiors)
What would you say regarding the quality of interior plastics? Do they last 90K or simply fade away?
You say the alloys were touching the rear wheel wells, how much is the width of Alloys? Also do you know their offset? If it written somewhere on the face of the alloy.

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