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Old 21st August 2010, 21:45   #1
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Default Suzuki Baleno it is! EDIT : Now beyond 150,000 kms

Had been looking at various options for a car for my parents and during the initial search the condition in which people kept their cars made me shrivel in fear at the prospect of buying a pre owned car. The cars seen and tested in the hot afternoons where @ashish was also troubled a lot are in a separate thread.
Finally 2 days ago I have picked up a Baleno VXI, March 2006, shod with 14"Alloys and 185/65 rubbers. The car has done 41K on the odo and belonged to a fellow bhpian. It was picked up after being posted on the classifieds here.

Initial impressions:
1. The car has been well kept and maintained.
2. The love shows in the condition it is in.
3. Drives well and composed though I find the gear shifter to be slightly sticky.
4. There is a lot of noise from the tyres, I wonder why?
5. Engine sounds great and the pickup is acceptable as communicated by a few friends and mechanics who have driven it in the past 2 days. However, I still feel my Marina Dicor accelerates better
6. There is no clock on the dash and neither is the fog a standard accessory.
7. Though the steering wheel is tilt adjustable but I feel that its only cosmetic as the variation is not much. On a lower setting it tends to foul with your thighs.
8. Sitting position is slightly stretched with low under thigh support.
9. Rear seat is comfortable and the overall ride quality is great.
10. Auto climate control is a cool feature and is terrific and gives you a feel of luxury.
11. The doors are very light and swing away at the slightest sway when open.
12. Overall dash layout is excellent with everything in reach.

On Monday I shall be taking it out for a long highway drive and see how it handles. Also tomorrow it will get the team-bhp stickers and thereafter I shall post the pictures.

How much would the wheel bearings cost for a Baleno as someone has doubted that the noise from the tyres is partly significant due to the bearings. Any ideas or suggestions on this?
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Old 21st August 2010, 23:48   #2
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i dont think baleno needs bearing replacement at 41K.check out tyres first.baleno is exellent highway car.please update your 5th point after your drive on monday
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Old 22nd August 2010, 10:15   #3
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Yes, I agree with procircuit. Unless the wheels were immersed in water, your bearings ought to be fine.
The 40,000 service is a major one. Has it been done? If it's done properly you will find the engine will be like velvet!
Tyre noise may also be there depending on tread design. Please check if the tyres are properly fitted (unidirectional fitted the wrong way?)
Enjoy one of the few cars this side of 4 lakh that makes you feel like a king on steroids!
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Old 22nd August 2010, 10:31   #4
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congos buddy.The baleno does have a good engine.This one car that i felt the least power drop when the air con kicks in.The only negative point i feel with the baleno are the doors that are a bit curvy,that makes city driving a bit troublesome(my observation).
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Old 22nd August 2010, 21:13   #5
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You mind the curves, seriously mate, lol.
The tyres I shall check. No photo opportunity with all these rains today.
Yes the 40K service has been done. They were through at least what I could make out from the job card. However, the wheel cylinders were not changed on customer demand though the manual recommends the change. I shall see if the change is mandatory, then I shall get it done.
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Old 22nd August 2010, 23:58   #6
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WandererNomad, Congratulations on buying an used Maruti Baleno. Maruti Baleno is my favorite car from the Maruti stable and unlike my friends, I like the styling of Maruti Baleno.

Somehow you failed to mention the color of the car. Let me guess - Is yours a Black or Pearl Silver?

Usually I hate to see ownership reports with no pictures at all. And this is no exception. Please do upload the pictures brother!

PS: No offence intended.

Drive her safe.

Amith
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Old 23rd August 2010, 08:50   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wanderernomad View Post
.... However, the wheel cylinders were not changed on customer demand though the manual recommends the change. I shall see if the change is mandatory, then I shall get it done.
It's better you do this. The garage may not have the parts in ready stock, so you'll have to order and book an appointment ahead, but as preventive maintenance it's highly recommended.
Secondly, parts are always increasing in price, so replacing them now is also advisable. An air filter element that cost around 350/- in 2008 is now about 700/-!
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Old 24th August 2010, 09:31   #8
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Congrats Wanderernomad !
I think its the noisy stock tires not the bearings, i assume its running on stock goodyears.

How much did you get the Baleno for ? Just curious to know the value of 2006 Balenos.

Last edited by kpzen : 24th August 2010 at 09:34.
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Old 24th August 2010, 10:42   #9
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@Klub : No offence taken mate. I too subscribe to your views. Pictures coming up later today positively. Its pearl silver.
@filcord: Thanks mate will get it done soon.
@Kp: Bhai, paid Rs 2,62,500 for it. The transfer of insurance worth 9200 + leather seat covers are included in it.
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Old 25th August 2010, 13:52   #10
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Here are the pictures.
Attached Images
          
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Old 2nd December 2010, 16:35   #11
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Today I let go of my Marina with a heavy heart. Dad has taken it away and I am left with his Baleno now. Yesterday got around to some add ons as detailed below:
1. A digital clock that says Baleno Tick..something for Rs 450.
2. Door rain visors black for Rs 600.
3. Door guards silver colour for Rs 200.
4. Rear Curtain for Rs 450.
Total came to about 1700 but paid only 1500. Apart from the above paid Rs 500 as labour charges for getting the HU and Amp relocated from the Marina into the Baleno and the Baleno kenwood HU into the Marina. The amp is located below the front passenger seat and drives the rear speakers.
Will settle other things into the car later this weekend. Somethings I have noticed over the short duration drives:
1. A slight khat sound from front side when driven over broken patches. Maybe the rubber bushes need replacement?
2. How do I get the ACC to work and simultaneously change the mode of air vents to both face and legs? The moment I touch the mode button to change the Auto goes off and the moment I touch the Auto on again the settings get changed!!
3. The car doesnot rev more than about 2500 rpm under normal acceleration! Is it normal?
4. I still feel the engine feels laboured while accelerating. Can someone from the bhp who has extensive experience on a Baleno while passing through test drive it and put my fears at rest?
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Old 2nd December 2010, 16:45   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wanderernomad View Post
1. A slight khat sound from front side when driven over broken patches. Maybe the rubber bushes need replacement??
Typical sound with most of the Balenos. Will not go away generally. However if it is very noisy and comes not from centre but the sides, chek out the lower arms, they might need replace,wnt

Quote:

2. How do I get the ACC to work and simultaneously change the mode of air vents to both face and legs? The moment I touch the mode button to change the Auto goes off and the moment I touch the Auto on again the settings get changed!!


Will not work. It does not work in Innova as well. There is a reason for it. If in summers, you put on only the vents on the feet / Only the windscreen vents in winter, the car will not cool / war uniformly. So if you want the HVAC to manage the temperature, it controls the vents as well.
Quote:

3. The car doesnot rev more than about 2500 rpm under normal acceleration! Is it normal?
What do you mean by that? the Engine goes till its readline of 6500 RPM.
Quote:
4. I still feel the engine feels laboured while accelerating. Can someone from the bhp who has extensive experience on a Baleno while passing through test drive it and put my fears at rest?
If you are in Hyderabad anytime, I can do it. Generally petrol engines like the G16B in Baleno "come on the cam" only past 2500 rpm.

the Baleno may suffer from low ground clearance and lack of airbags. One thing that it does not suffer from is lack of power. If you feel that it is lacking in power (and that too compared to Marina), pls get the engine checked for clogged injectors / carbon deposits.

You can extract marginally more pep out of the engine by using mobile 1 synthetic oil. I do in my Baleno.

Quote:
How much would the wheel bearings cost for a Baleno as someone has doubted that the noise from the tyres is partly significant due to the bearings. Any ideas or suggestions on this?
The NCT5s in my Baleno had to be changed post 25k kms as they had become very noisy. Maruti changed my bearings under warranty but that did not make an iota of difference in noise and thats when they did a test run of my car with new tires and found it was the tires. If your tires have done 40 k already, try chaging them before changing bearings.
Or at least get someone from a workshop to give you a "test run" of tires from another car to find if it is the bearings or the tires.

Baleno's, unlike other Maruti cars, were never localised much and the SGP Japan parts partly explain the solid build quality. Mine is still ratle free after 70k kms of hard driving.

Last edited by Buffetfan : 2nd December 2010 at 16:52.
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Old 5th December 2010, 00:56   #13
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Thanks buffetfan. Yes the ACC controls the vents I could see it changing the mode every so often. I think I will get the engine checked as it seems laboured to reach even 3000 rpm before I ran out of road. On the same stretch my Marina could go upto 3000 rpm as well easily while I definitly feel is some laggard attitude on Baleno's engine, Its almost like it is groaning to rev. The speed acceleration is ok but somehow I am unable to put a finger on what is wrong.
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Old 5th December 2010, 06:35   #14
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Baleno should easily rev past the 2500 mark. A friend's Baleno which just clocked 1 L kms, still feels quite powerful and frankly does not show the age.
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Old 5th December 2010, 19:22   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wanderernomad View Post
1. A slight khat sound from front side when driven over broken patches. Maybe the rubber bushes need replacement?
2. The car doesnot rev more than about 2500 rpm under normal acceleration! Is it normal?
3. I still feel the engine feels laboured while accelerating. Can someone from the bhp who has extensive experience on a Baleno while passing through test drive it and put my fears at rest?
1) We have that sound too but that sound started at around 40K kms. Also we have driven the car mostly for highway drives and sometimes to meet schedule, we were doing an average of 100 kmph. Yes, the bushes and may even the lower arm needs replacement. We had a talk with our dealer Kiran motors, but the part of suspension was quoted to be rs. 6500/-. Since two months there is no follow up from Kiran motors.

2) Impossible unless engine is in bad condition. Baleno revvs past 2500 easily and goes on till more than 6000 rpm. The real grunt lies after 4000 rpm. There is something wrong somewhere.

3) Well, Baleno engine feels labored after around 6200 rpm approx. That too is because of the noisy nature of engine, otherwise the engine itself is free revving. Baleno accelerates well, goes onto cruise at more than 150 kmph if need be ( along with proper roads ). Get your car checked. If you know some TBHPian who has owned or driven Baleno for a fair amount of kms. he will be able to give a better judgment.

I suggest you get your car checked.
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