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Old 21st June 2009, 19:55   #1
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Default Fiat Palio Multijet - clutch woes

My multijet has clocked 17k Kms. Done 3rd free servicing.

Clutch bothers me quite a bit. . It's hard and harsh. It's particularity experienced with lot of grief after driving other cars of same cadre. Swift VDI for instance is smooth. Punto that I drove today was just amazing. In my case, the clutch had some initial resistance. (esp. at 200 rpm)

What is up with this clutch? I complained about it during my second service. They kept the car for two days claiming that Fiat engineer would be visiting them and examining. I don't know what they did, but, after 2-3 days it was delivered. Felt a bit smooth. Some resistance was gone. I returned thinking it was better (and probably this is how it is in Palio). But, it keeps bothering me all the time. knee/Leg/hip joint has started picking up some pain. I cannot imagine driving this car for years if I ware to drive it inside the city.

Btw, I overheard some service engineers gossiping that this problem is being reported in Palios and apparently another customer was complaining of knee pain.

Multijet owners out there, how is your clutch like? Have you compared it to, lets say, swift VDI?

Since Punto engine is same, I'm tempted think that Palio has some inferior parts out there (related to clutch). If it is with all the Palios, should we bring this up in a more unified way and make FIAL do what ever it takes to rectify the problem?

I've been going to Manipal motors for servicing etc. It's a different issue that they don't sound competent. So, should I be trying other service center?

Please advice.
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Old 22nd June 2009, 11:07   #2
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Well, the clutch is harder than most other cars of its class. But I have done long drives (8 hours from Delhi to Dehradun in the wrost possibl U.P. traffic redlining and shifting like mad) through crowded cities and am yet to pick up knee-joint pains. Why don't you compare with another Palio MJD? If it is harder on your car, demand a replacement under warranty.
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Old 22nd June 2009, 16:55   #3
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Could your clutch be dying prematurely. Might just happen. Clutches do get exceptionally hard toward the end of there lives. I know 17K is hardly a mileage but then it might just be going. As a last resort, just get the clutch replaced, should not cost you more than 4K and you be comfortable, I mean knee aches can be quite irritating and severe if unattended for a long time. So if you get tired of why this is happening and the engineers are not able to fix it, tell them to get a new one.
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Old 3rd July 2009, 21:46   #4
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Hi

Iitiam This is genuine problem with FIAT MJD , my cars clutch was replaced at around 4500 kms. Check your mileage is should be low and sometimes you will feel the car taking a jerk when you engage the first gear even without releasing the clutch. The service gentleman will spin big yarns but persist and get it done. Give your car onley when they say they have a spare in stock or they will keep it happily for 10 days after having opened it up so you cant even drive out with it !

I have a query like all cars this one too should have a timer based indicator cancelling function isnt it so ? Could someone clarify I am fed up of my indicator not turning off at turns or under any other situation I have to manually do it.

Regards
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Old 6th July 2009, 00:08   #5
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@coreolis

Turn indicator to left side doesn't self cancle on small turns of the wheel. I have even stopped noticing it.

@ittiam

I have driven Bubby's SDX and his car's clutch is as hard as mine at 15,000 odd kms. Does your car move forward in first gear with the clutch pedal fully pressed? That could indicate a worn out clutch. Otherwise, is it possible to get the clutch bled and the entire clutch fluid replaced? How are your brakes doing (if the clutch / brake fluid is ineffective now, then even the brakes will show reduced performance). Kindly try and get all the possible diagnosis done before deciding that your clutch is over and done with.
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Old 6th July 2009, 15:38   #6
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@architect

I was actually wanting to ask that like most cars indicators should cancel after a while timer based switches in case i forget to switch them off. Doesn't the Palio have the same
facility.
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Old 3rd August 2009, 11:02   #7
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Nope. car doesn't move when clutch is fully engaged.

I can feel some sort of resistance when engaging the clutch especially when I've started moving. Engaging in first gear is not very bad.

Something to note is that, my breaks, even though effective, are hard. Accelerator pedal is also hard.

I'll visit Prerana/Concorde this week.
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Old 3rd August 2009, 11:56   #8
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I haven't seen the mechanism in person but I have been led to believe that the clutch mounting bracket is of inferior quality and you could swap the existing one with the one from the 1.6 GTX and it works fine.
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Old 3rd September 2009, 14:57   #9
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update update update...

OK. story so far is that, I went to Prerana motors and explained the problem. There was obvious resistance. I was told that my car is good etc. etc. But, after some persistence, they took it up. Opened it up and found that clutch was indeed bad. Whole clutch assembly was replaced under warranty.

After that, clutch was soft again and I had better time...

After driving for a week, I find that it is gaining hardness very slowly... I'm afraid that it'd end up becoming same dead pedal after 15k more Kms. There was some resistance while shifting to 1st and 2nd gear. I have specifically observed that, if you drive longer on 2nd and try to shift to 3rd, u can observe the clutch hardnes..

So, I've dropped it back to the garage... Lets see what will they find this time.

Some curious incident...

When I was in the workshop, I met another gentleman whose SDX had clocked 45k Kms. I casually questioned abt clutch hardnes... He said, not at all and he hasn't developed any knee pain etc. and reckoned that my be I did not know how to drive. Now, I wouldn't believe him. I asked to see it for myself. Happily he gave me the keys. To my biggest surprise, I found that his clutch was 100 times harder than mine. I was taken aback. Totally confused. I told him that his clutch was dead and he should see mine. The moment he tried mine, he did not know how to respond. He ran for service advisor.

So, in my private research, I've mostly established that the Palio multijet clutch has problems. I can bet, your car isn't as smooth as it used to be. If it needs a clutch replacement every 15k Kms. it's ought to to be taken up with Fiat.

The service station guy said that he has changed the clutch assembly for mainy customers. Others are probably insensitive to the hardness. Every I've see at the service station is having this problem...
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Old 3rd September 2009, 22:58   #10
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Hmm.. yes you are true on both possibilities. Maybe some of us (like me) don't notice the clutch hardness after a point.

However, a hard clutch pedal is not the only indicator of a worn-out clutch. As long as other parameters (like clutch pedal play and car not being fully in neutral when clutch is depressed) are fine, I wouldn't worry about the clutch. Not till the point the pedal gets harder.

Further, I observe that in 5th gear, the car still clocks 80 kph at 2000 RPM, 100 kph at 2500 RPM and 120 kph at 3000 RPM today, just as it did when it was new. So, I don't think the clutch could have worn out yet.

Bubby is having clutch problems of a different kind. He has difficulty engaging gears after a long spell in bumper-to-bumper traffic. Clutch pedal hardness was almost the same on both cars when we did a cross-TD about 2 months ago.
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Old 4th September 2009, 00:55   #11
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Hi Guys,
My favourite topic not sure how I missed this thread, as Architect pointed my clutch is as hard as his, mine is at 20k kms and his is around 28k kms.
I drove my brother in laws SDX which is at 14k and his clutch is butter smooth, better than that of Swift D. I was left shell shocked by this, I was like what the hell, whats going on, how the clutch behave so differently in 2 exactly identical cars.
What to do?
Ittiam says that is clutch is hard again just after a weeks running.
What to do Multijet boys???

Last edited by Bubby : 4th September 2009 at 00:59.
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Old 4th September 2009, 12:55   #12
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Let me clarify Architect...

Its unlikely that the clutch plate has worn out the way you are imagining. With all the clutch problems, my car did 100 @2.5k RPM. So, clutch plates are probably as good.

It seems to be something about the engaging and disengaging assembly. I don't know what all goes in there. (some hydraulic pumps etc.)

Today morning I went to Prerana motors again and they told me that they have cleaned and oiled some stuff. And they said, it was holding up some air.

Since some other rattling wasn't fixed, I did not pick it up. When I test drove, the clutch felt a bit different. So, I've agreed to take the car in the evening if it is ready.

My next service is due after another 2k Kms, so, I'll monitor this clutch for a while.

I've also logged a complaint at Fiat web site. Lets see how they respond.

Architect, for a change, why don't you drive a new car (TD car or something) and update us back. Since you are happy with it, I'd like see if some of us got a lime.
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Old 5th September 2009, 01:04   #13
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Ok... let me get it right so-called "Multijet Boys"

1. The Palio MJD clutch pedal is hard as mentioned by most. The original TD car I test drove in March 2008, I don't remember. Bubby's clutch pedal was equally hard.

2. As per Bubby, his BIL's MJD's clutch is really soft (I hope there's no play in it)

3. People like ICE and Bubby have difficulty in shifting gears, so they have already got their brackets replaced (or waiting for it, like ICE).

4. Now I have a hard clutch on my car, but so has Bubby. My gearshift problems don't seem to be as acute as his. In fact, last 2-3 days I have been driving like a rally driver, simply to try and find issues with gearshift and clutch. But, except for the hard pedal, nothing at all. Once in a while, 4th to 5th is a problem and so is neutral to 1st. Reverse is not a problem if you lift the ring and WAIT for a second.

5. Now what should I do? Practically speaking, I am not facing any problem, though my calf muscles do tend to ache if I get caught in one of those horrible traffic jams. I think I will live with it!

6. 30,000 km service is due at end of September after a 2000 km weekend drive to Rajasthan. Let me see what happens.
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Old 5th September 2009, 01:28   #14
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guys..i have driven a friends SDX and his clutch is hard too.His car has done 17k kms.
He reckons that its like this since the beginning.In contrast when he drove my swift clutch was thudding to the bottom.When i asked him to go soft on it he just couldnt.
No problems with his gear shift though and he does complain of aching left calf sometimes.
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Old 14th September 2009, 21:12   #15
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Guys,

Got the clutch mounting bracket replaced on my car. VST Motors at Chennai replaced it with a new bracket last week and the shifting is fine now. The clutch also feels more springy and right. However, I honestly don't think the clutch has got any lighter
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