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Old 15th May 2007, 08:01   #1
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Default Alto (Lets Go) - The Story so far...EDIT : Now Updated to 40K

I was thinking of writing a LTO report since my car touched 5000 km but somehow I was not able to do it. Probably busy in office in weekdays and driving in the weekend and after that all energy into the travelogue. Somehow this got a back seat. Hopefully I can complete it today.

A brief background: My only love since my childhood was bycycles and each and every corner of Hyderabad-Secunderabad has been done in my cycle (BSA SLR initially and Hercules MTB in 11-12std) till I left for college and burned the rubber of Atlas cycle in the campus for four years. Also burned some rubber of my dad's Vespa NV during the later stage of school.

Do I need a car? Somehow I never felt the need of a car partly because never experienced one in the family and partly I loved roaming around in my bike. I never realised what is it to own a car. Still, in one idle month of January2004, me and my friend decided to learn driving and atleast get a license. Nobody had any agenda of buying car in near future.

Necessity finally arises: In between all this, couple of years went by, salary increased too, time to get married, now what? Still no car in mind, OK, I will still manage in my bike. First six months, the newly married couple tried all the trips they can in their bike be it Mangalore, Mysore, Shivasamudram-Talakkad, Yelagiri Hills, Hogenakkal Falls, NandiHills etc. During all this, slowly and steadily the necessity of a car started to rise. And one fine day in November 2005, I decided to go for a car to fulfill my need of the highway.

Research: From Day1, it was an Alto as I was in that impression that I cannot afford anything bigger the price of Alto. That’s the typical psyche when you think of your first car. I always liked the shape of Alto since it was launched. During all this googling, I came across this wonderful site called team-bhp and read almost all the threads in about 1.5-2 months (still didn’t join). Thankfully, the lull period in office also helped me think deeper and gain tons of knowledge through this site. In the new year 2006, I decided to book a new car and register to this site called team-bhp after booking the car.

Dealer ---> Confusion ---> Deal: Alto is it...Lets go!! I went to two dealers Mandovi and Bimal. I went with Bimal thanks to the excellent service by the executive. But the confusion started once I stepped into the huge Bimal showroom in Mahadevpura. Infact I stepped into the showroom after booking Alto. All the cars were in display. Both me and wife sat inside the showcased Alto and chatted for 10min.

There was a Baleno next to the Alto and I told my wife lets sit in that as well. My wife told, "Kya karoge baithke jaab kharidna hi nahi hai", then I replied, "Baithne mein kya jata hai", As soon as I step into Baleno, my mind started to play pranks, it was an awesome feeling and I was falling in love with this car. The deal was too tempting and realizing a potential opportunity, the salesman started to pressurize me with all those excellent goodies, freebies and discount that were running on Baleno at that time. I started to think, anyway I am buying in loan, another 3K more EMI will get me a Baleno but finally sanity prevailed and decided against it and went on with my Alto.

Car just before delivery


The Car: I was delivered the Wine Red Alto LXi on 17th Feb, 2006. The car cost me Rs 3.42 lakhs (after the cash discount of 12K). Plus I got a sunfilm free along with the regular goodies. I added another 30K worth of accessories like ICE (Sony350, Sony-100W front and JBL-300W rear speakers), leather steering cover, seat cover, Autocop-remote lock, side beeding, antenna etc

Some Memorable and long journeys so far:
The purpose of buying the car was to go to those places comfortably where my bike cannot. Some of the long ones are
Bangalore – Kolkata – Bangalore (also Kolkata – Siuri – Kolkata)
Bangalore – Goa – Bangalore
Bangalore – Kodai – Madurai – Bangalore
Bangalore – Saligrama – Bangalore
Etc etc etc…

The Stats so far:
ODO reads – 16560 km (90% Highway, 10% city)
Max Speed – 140kmph (on stock tyres) (Nellore – Ongole stretch of NH5)Fuel – Shell Normal (Bangalore), Reliance (on highways), IOCL (twice in Kolkata), BP Speed (twice in Goa)
Fuel Efficiency – I maintain an excel of every drop of the fuel that went into the car. This is what the excel looks. The max I could record was 21.2kmpl during first refill in one of the long trips.


Services:
I have done regular service at 5K kms from Surakshaa, Bangalore.
It includes the rotation (5 wheel), balancing, alignment.
Changed Engine Oil to Castrol Magnatac at 5K km. I plan to upgrade to Mobil1 at 25K change.

Plus:
I loved the AC. I realized its efficiency during the Kolkata trip and passing through those hottest towns like Vijaywada, Balasore in the noon time.
Excellent FE
Brakes – I really liked the brakes of the car
Parking and maneuverability in city traffic.

Negatives:
I thought about Space initially but now I liked the space as well after all those long drives and with 4 people
I feel the car is a dream at that price and hence it sells like hot cakes. If I go around finding negatives for such a VFM product, it will be better I find a higher segment car instead.

Mods so far:
K&N Stock Exchange Filter
Michelin XM1 (155/65R13 tyres)
Aura Alloys (13”)
Phillips Rally 100/90W bulbs
Windtone Super horns from Roots

This is what it looks now


Future Mods planned:
Thinking of some changes like plugs, Mobil1, FFE, Strut braces, Spoiler etc…will discuss the stuffs as and when I plan to install…

PS: Will keep updating this thread with time…

Abhi
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Old 15th May 2007, 08:45   #2
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Nice review about one of India's most practical cars. Good show AK.
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Old 15th May 2007, 09:08   #3
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Nice review....By the by you drove all the way to Kolkatta from Bangalore in an Alto ? And looks like you maintained the car pretty well after all that mileage....
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Old 15th May 2007, 09:31   #4
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Akroy, Wonderful report and good to know that you are happy with Lets GO performance!. 140 on Alto look bit dangerous though. ( I was too scared to go beyond 160 on my OHC in L&T bypass in Covai)

Also Impressed with your excel sheet. ( I always wanted to do But never got time!)

Last edited by chanapli : 15th May 2007 at 09:33.
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Old 15th May 2007, 09:35   #5
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That a really nice perspective from the buyers POV .. And I love the way you have maintained the stats ..

Quote:
Originally Posted by akroy
"Baithne mein kya jata hai", As soon as I step into Baleno, my mind started to play pranks, it was an awesome feeling and I was falling in love with this car.
I know how that feels .. Did the same when I bought the zen , not knowing what the baleno engine was capable off which was the only thing that put me off .. And now , well you know .......
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Old 15th May 2007, 10:10   #6
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Very comprehensive review. One of the most practical cars around. Seeing the no. of trips you have made you have really taken the "Lets Go" line very seriously

Nice car and nice colour as well

Cheers
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Old 15th May 2007, 10:32   #7
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wow !!! what a detailed work on excel ! nice review
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Old 15th May 2007, 10:32   #8
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WOW! That was fantastic Roy!!. Excellent report. The Fuel data is great. How do u manage to keep such details (I see there are other sheets too). I too own an Alto 2005 Lxi (New Shape) and keep records of maintanance and expenditure but never did with the Petrol part. May be I should do so now.
B'Lore - Kolkata was a bold trip to make. I had been planning for a TVM - Pune trip in my Alto for some time but couldnt make it so far. I was apprehensive about the outcome since I have to drive alone all the way. Perhaps I'll rethink once wifey gets her driving license.
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Old 15th May 2007, 10:42   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by abhilashvk View Post
Nice review....By the by you drove all the way to Kolkatta from Bangalore in an Alto ?
Hey, You didnt know it...Pls rush to the travelogue section, it has got a 5star rating by the T-BHPians...

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Old 15th May 2007, 11:20   #10
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Quite a comprehensive review Abhi.... great going....
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Old 15th May 2007, 11:21   #11
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Akroy nice write up. I specially liked the goa trip write upp...man u seem to be going places with ur car ...keep going !!
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Old 15th May 2007, 12:15   #12
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Very nice review Akroy.

Dont waste money by changing plugs, you want get any benefits.
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Old 15th May 2007, 12:23   #13
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Excellent review. Excel sheet being the best....

Sometimes I wonder what would it be like to leave my Baleno/Ikon and drive the 800 as I used to 5 years back.... nostalgic.
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Old 15th May 2007, 12:24   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BUSA View Post
Very nice review Akroy.

Dont waste money by changing plugs, you want get any benefits.
Sorry if this is goiing off topic, I second Busa, I have NGK iridium plugs in my alto.

Well, no good!
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Old 15th May 2007, 12:45   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Knight Rider View Post
Sorry if this is goiing off topic, I second Busa, I have NGK iridium plugs in my alto.

Well, no good!
Knight rider & BUSA, done will not change them...Actually the present never had any problems, I would have any discussed this but now that you people sharing your experiences, I feel there is no point investing money on plugs....

Thanks
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