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Old 15th April 2008, 10:46   #1
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Default A review of the Gypsy Regular Hard Top

I ve had 2 Gypsy's so far.

A narrow track 970cc regular MG410 Softtop between 1997 and 2000 and a wide track 970cc regular MG410 Hardtop between 2004 and 2005.

I loved going off road in those jeeps. They could literally climb 45 degree inclines and go into swamps and come out, shake themselves and be on their way as though nothing particular had happened.

I once pulled a Sierra out of deep sand on the beach side in Madras, with my old Gypsy.

A lovely vehicle and great fun to have as a third vehicle in the house, if you are a rich man.

The best thing about the Gypsy is that it only comes with 4WD standard manual just like a real jeep should!! They shouldnt have discontinued the lockable differential in front though, for the sake of fuel economy.

Fuel economy - complete waste of time being petrol driven.

Steering etc - absolutely horrible on road but superb off road because it will not cause trouble like Power steering will.

Suspension - Superb for Off Road!

Comfort - forget it. This is bound to give you a spinal injury with prolonged usage. You can feel every single bump on the road bone jarringly! But then, you're not expected to use this as your city limousine, so what does it matter?

While it may look very stylish with alloys and fat tyres etc, these are more the "street racer - boy racer" versions. For real effectiveness in off road conditions it is best to stick with the original HT 75 Tyres with Jeep tread, because they have a slim footprint which will not get bogged down in deep mud and slush.

However, why cant Maruti Suzuki come up with an upgraded version of this Gypsy jeep powered by the same Diesel powerplant as is there in the Swift? and do something about the suspension?

There is a desperate market out there for a Rs 5 lac to Rs 7lac Jeep/ small / light weight SUV/ Off roader/ 4WD vehicle! Why cant they recognise this fact?

If they could bring in the Suzuki Jimmy or Old Vitara like they used to have in Sri Lanka and other places it would be lovely.

However, a diesel version is absolutely essential for it to become a runaway sales success!

And a lot of people especially those living in remote farms, tea and coffee estates etc, would suddenly have an excellent and viable 4WD vehicle available at an affordable price!
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Old 15th April 2008, 11:22   #2
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Hi Shankar balan,

Nice to know that you have two gypsies.

I do agree with you on certain discomforts of gypsy like bumpy ride, fuel efficiency. Gypsy has been designed to an on-road and off- road vehicle. I mean, speed on highways and capable 4 X 4 off-road. You might appreciate the gypsy either will have 1000 cc engine used in Maruti 1000 or Esteem Engine of 1300 cc. Gypsy derives its extra power from transmission and differentials. Hence, the fuel efficiency is lowest.

Gypsy seldom get struck, because of its light weight compared to counterparts Jeeps or SUVs. So this weight issue will play bad on highways. pop in a sack of sand at the back of gypsy, you will have comfortable ride.

BTW , I had a wide track soft top gypsy and sold it to buy a hard top modified Gypsy. Been having it as first four wheeler since 7 years. I have travelled wide on this gypsy, on high ways and indulged in hardcore off roading with jeepers in Bangalore. I would say gypsy performs equally good in off roading like that of jeep.

If you are a keen off roader, please join us for next off roading trip. Log in true off roading experiences at suzuki_gypsy-india on Yahoogroups and jeep_thrills at Yahoogroups.com

You can still get gypsy with waiting from Maruti. However dealers would discourage you.

warm regards,

Dwarak
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Old 15th April 2008, 13:01   #3
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I have two queries reagarding gypsies:

Whats with the narrow track / wide track - why did Maruti bring these two versions, and what are advantages / disadvantages.

Whats the deal with MG410/MG413/MG413W etc?
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Old 15th April 2008, 15:19   #4
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Hi Dwaraka

I used to have 2 gypsies - one at a time.
Unfortunately since I sold the last one I had and bought a Bolero 2wd I ve not been able to go off road that much.
Bolero is very capable but a bit heavy.
Now I ve even sold that and bought a Scorpio 2WD (the 4WD is too expensive) and this vehicle is just too heavy to go swamp roading and seriously off road.
One day soon I hope to buy a 2nd Hand MM540/ MM550DP 4WD and do some active off roading in that!
Thanks

cheers

Shankar

Quote:
Originally Posted by dwaraka View Post
Hi Shankar balan,

Nice to know that you have two gypsies.

I do agree with you on certain discomforts of gypsy like bumpy ride, fuel efficiency. Gypsy has been designed to an on-road and off- road vehicle. I mean, speed on highways and capable 4 X 4 off-road. You might appreciate the gypsy either will have 1000 cc engine used in Maruti 1000 or Esteem Engine of 1300 cc. Gypsy derives its extra power from transmission and differentials. Hence, the fuel efficiency is lowest.

Gypsy seldom get struck, because of its light weight compared to counterparts Jeeps or SUVs. So this weight issue will play bad on highways. pop in a sack of sand at the back of gypsy, you will have comfortable ride.

BTW , I had a wide track soft top gypsy and sold it to buy a hard top modified Gypsy. Been having it as first four wheeler since 7 years. I have travelled wide on this gypsy, on high ways and indulged in hardcore off roading with jeepers in Bangalore. I would say gypsy performs equally good in off roading like that of jeep.

If you are a keen off roader, please join us for next off roading trip. Log in true off roading experiences at suzuki_gypsy-india on Yahoogroups and jeep_thrills at Yahoogroups.com

You can still get gypsy with waiting from Maruti. However dealers would discourage you.

warm regards,

Dwarak
hi

to answer your queries

Maruti Gypsy is basically the Suzuki Vitara outside India and which later was called the Suzuki Samurai outside India. Those jeeps also used to have a decal saying SG410 (1000 cc engine) or SG413 (1300 cc engine) on the side of the front fender.

1.The earliest Gypsies brought into India or built in India came with a narrow track - which means the distance between the two wheel axle hubs on either side. This was largely because they came only with Soft Tops in the "80's. If one wanted a hard top Gypsy (in order to put an AC in it or just to try and keep the dust out) one had to fabricate the fibreglass or ABS PLastic hard top and invariably it wouldnt fit perfectly and with the hard top it had certain stability issues as well because of the narrower track. All these early Gypsies had the 970 cc engine - the same one that was used in the Maruti 1000 ( in fact they modified the Gypsy engine for use in the 1000 at that time). This was the MG410 Gypsy. This also had the freewheeling and lockable 4WD hubs as standard.

2. In the 1990's they decided that enough was enough and they introduced the Hard Top (company fitted) Gypsy. I cant remember exactly when but either in the early or mid 1990's they increased the width between the two wheel axle hubs on either side by about 100mm - making the new Wide Track Gypsy in both Soft Top and Hard Top variants- at this time they also added Flared Wheel Arches etc, which made the Gypsy look more aggressive too. This jeep was also called MG410. Around this time they knocked off the freewheeling 4WD hubs to make the Gypsy more cost effective and cheaper to run on account of fuel economy.

3. Around the same time, they decided to make the Gypsy more powerful (a desperate requirement for Rallying) and introduced the Gypsy King (Suzuki Samurai) - with the 1.3 Litre engine - same engine as the Esteem engine. They called this MG413. This Gypsy came with the wider flared wheel arches, soft and hard top variants, AC etc etc. It was quite fantastic at that time except that is cost about 4 odd lacs to buy and was expensive always to run because of the petrol engine.

There were many genetically modified Gypsies with Toyota Trucks 1.5, 2 and 2.2 Litre Diesel Engines but on these they could never connect up the 4WD and thus these Gypsies only had 2WD. Ive seen a few in Madras in the mid nineties.

Hope this clarifies

Cheerio
Shankar


Quote:
Originally Posted by alpha1 View Post
I have two queries reagarding gypsies:

Whats with the narrow track / wide track - why did Maruti bring these two versions, and what are advantages / disadvantages.

Whats the deal with MG410/MG413/MG413W etc?

Last edited by Technocrat : 15th April 2008 at 16:59.
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Old 15th April 2008, 16:20   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shankar.balan View Post
Maruti Gypsy is basically the Suzuki Vitara outside India and which later was called the Suzuki Samurai outside India.
Are you sure about this? I agree Gypsy was called Suzuki Sumurai, but never Suzuki Vitara.

Suzuki Vitara: Also known as Escudo, Sidekick, or Chevy/Geo Tracker.
Suzuki Samurai: Also known as SJ-30,Sierra,Holden Drover,Maruti Gypsy,Suzuki Santana,Suzuki Caribbean

Source: Wikipedia
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Old 15th April 2008, 16:45   #6
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I stand corrected Samurai San!

I thought it was the same when years ago I saw a vitara in colombo

Quote:
Originally Posted by Samurai View Post
Are you sure about this? I agree Gypsy was called Suzuki Sumurai, but never Suzuki Vitara.

Suzuki Vitara: Also known as Escudo, Sidekick, or Chevy/Geo Tracker.
Suzuki Samurai: Also known as SJ-30,Sierra,Holden Drover,Maruti Gypsy,Suzuki Santana,Suzuki Caribbean

Source: Wikipedia
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Old 15th April 2008, 16:57   #7
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@Samurai, I have seen Suzuki's Vitara in Australia and they looked like our Gypsy (in UK as well, though can't clearly remember if it was named Vitara there) .
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Old 15th April 2008, 17:15   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jeep View Post
@Samurai, I have seen Suzuki's Vitara in Australia and they looked like our Gypsy (in UK as well, though can't clearly remember if it was named Vitara there) .
The Vitara has always been a different model from the Suzuki Samurai (which is the base for our Gypsy). Even the first generation Vitara is a slightly bigger vehicle than the Samurai/SJ413. The older generation Vitara may look like the Gypsy from a distance, but they are not the same.
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Old 15th April 2008, 17:26   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by alpha1 View Post
...Whats with the narrow track / wide track - why did Maruti bring these two versions...
The wider track version was introduced to quell misgivings on the rollover safety of the Suzuki Samurai : please see links below for details on this :

Consumer Group Asks Recall Of Suzuki Samurai as Unsafe - New York Times

Suzuki Rollovers, Geo Tracker Rollover Accidents & Suzuki sidekick rollover. Call SUV Rollover Lawyer

The company claimed that the vehicle had been tested for rollover safety, and would not topple in normal driving circumstances; but it introduced a wider track version all the same, to make double sure about this.



Quote:
Originally Posted by alpha1 View Post
Whats the deal with MG410/MG413/MG413W etc?
There is MG410/MG410W/MG413W (no MG413) : the W indicates the wider track, 410 refers to the Gypsy with 1000cc engine, 413 refers to the Gypsy with the 1.3L (Esteem) engine.

Last edited by Blue Thunder : 15th April 2008 at 17:35. Reason: typo
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Old 15th April 2008, 17:32   #10
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Originally Posted by shankar.balan View Post
However, why cant Maruti Suzuki come up with an upgraded version of this Gypsy jeep powered by the same Diesel powerplant as is there in the Swift? and do something about the suspension?
Now, why can't they do that instead of adding zillion variants to Swift? I would replace my Santro with that in a heart beat.
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Old 15th April 2008, 20:56   #11
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Koshun for the informed junta - is it a must that a gypsy have such horrible ride. I loved the vehicle till I took a 300km round trip as navigator over some decent, some bad roads.

While it was a total cat offroad in 4wd, but onroad, my back and whole body had never ached as much after whole of ladakh ride
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Old 22nd April 2008, 15:10   #12
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Thanks for the info on MG and track.
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Old 22nd April 2008, 20:32   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by phamilyman
is it a must that a gypsy have such horrible ride.
Yes, actually it is a feature and MUL mentions it in the manual/brochures of Gypsy also.
---- Ride : Bone-jarring, in strict conformance to BS-III specs.

Jokes aside, I am one ardent admirer of the Gypsy (soft-top - IMO the hard-top screws the awesome looks of the Gypsy). But, since I don't have the time to maintain 2 cars and since I am no off-roader, I never got around to buying one.

Plus, headers always discourages me from getting one. I think he feels the uniqueness (which he currently enjoys with some other off-roaders) will be lost if all and sundry start roaming around in Gypsys in Chennai.
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Old 22nd April 2008, 21:22   #14
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Originally Posted by supremeBaleno View Post
Plus, headers always discourages me from getting one. I think he feels the uniqueness (which he currently enjoys with some other off-roaders) will be lost if all and sundry start roaming around in Gypsys in Chennai.
SB, Bang Bang..OK Now that you are dead, when do you want your gypsy? LOL
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Old 22nd April 2008, 22:06   #15
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Nice review! Any pics of the Gypsies?
I'd love to see Maruti revive the Gypsy,and bring it back with a more powerful engine & improved looks. It'll see much more than 1/2 of the other cars from the Maruti stable! Or so I believe..
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