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Old 13th December 2010, 11:56   #31
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@vikrant - Why did you not go for higher end variant with ABS?Was price a factor?

I feel atleast ABS is must if not airbag even if it means shelling a few more.


I liked spark but went for A- star due to following reasons:
1.Beige dashboard - horrible reflections on windscreen
2. central instrument panel
3.Notchy gearshift - Single important reason not buying Spark
4.A/C - not that good in cooling cabin
5.Left hand configured stalk
6.safety - no passenger airbag

Spark real VFM but EuroNCAP rating of one star makes me wonder whether is it worth buying, Yes,other cars sold in India are no better but amongst new generation cars atleast we can expect more safety.

Vikrant - Wish You pleasant ownership experience.I hope you are not offended with my remarks.
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Old 20th December 2010, 13:30   #32
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Default Re: Chevy Spark 25,000 km Review

Quote:
Originally Posted by FrozeninTime View Post
@vikrant - Why did you not go for higher end variant with ABS?Was price a factor?

I feel atleast ABS is must if not airbag even if it means shelling a few more.


I liked spark but went for A- star due to following reasons:
1.Beige dashboard - horrible reflections on windscreen
2. central instrument panel
3.Notchy gearshift - Single important reason not buying Spark
4.A/C - not that good in cooling cabin
5.Left hand configured stalk
6.safety - no passenger airbag

Spark real VFM but EuroNCAP rating of one star makes me wonder whether is it worth buying, Yes,other cars sold in India are no better but amongst new generation cars atleast we can expect more safety.

Vikrant - Wish You pleasant ownership experience.I hope you are not offended with my remarks.
Ofcourse I am not affended with your questions. And yes, price was a major factor for not going in for the higher end although thats what I desired.

ABS is definitely a must as my Chevy in the US was a well equipped top end model. But to be very honest, with the kind of speeds we travel here in India, ABS is not absolutely required (I know many ppl will disagree), though a very safe measure. If you read my first post, I usually cruise at 80-90 making sudden surprises easier to control. Nevertheless, my next upgrade will be a top of the line with all the safety features.

Congratulations on the A-Star. Its a nice car. I did consider it but was using an Alto and wanted to try a non-maruti just for the heck of it.

1. Agree, the beige is bad. I was lucky I got the grey in 2008.
2. Central instrument cluster ain't that bad. Its just about getting used to it.
3. Gearshift is alright, but the throws are pretty long. But now that I have crossed the 28,000 mark, shifting has improved a lot.
4. AC: The AC is pretty good even for the rear passengers. But yes, in those 3-4 months of Mumbai summer, the AC does a fair job, not the best.
5. No issues. I drove in the US and hence was used to the left config. Also, Dad owns a Fiesta, so the config never really bothered.
6. Safety: NO safety. Period !!!!

All in all, its a good car. Numerous Mumbai-Pune, Mumbai-Panchgani, Mumbai-Nasik and Mumbai-Mahad trips. Very well behaved car for its size. 120 kmph on the Expressway (Do that very rarely. I dont think I will cross 100-120 even with ABS+airbags. Indian roads and not meant for that) and the car holds ground. Shift to the 5th gear well within the 50-55 range and she drives sweet.

Wish you good luck with your A-Star. Try keeping it under 90. Will help in the long run. Please post your ownership experience and do share the URL with me. One of my family members is buying his first car and has the A-Star on mind. Your review would be helpful.

Cheers !!!
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Old 20th December 2010, 14:08   #33
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Default Re: Chevy Spark 25,000 km Review

ABS is definitely a must as my Chevy in the US was a well equipped top end model.

Correction: My Chevy in the US was a '89 model without ABS and I did desire the ABS at that time as I seldom rented the newer cars for those long drives. ABS was a definite boon on those Interstates.
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Old 20th December 2010, 15:07   #34
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Default Re: Chevy Spark 25,000 km Review

Quote:
Originally Posted by FrozeninTime View Post
I liked spark but went for A- star due to following reasons:

Spark real VFM but EuroNCAP rating of one star makes me wonder whether is it worth buying, Yes,other cars sold in India are no better but amongst new generation cars atleast we can expect more safety.
1 star? From where did you get that information?
Check this out. Spark/Matiz got a rating close to 3.
Chevrolet Matiz | Euro NCAP - For safer cars crash test safety rating

By the way relatively new Alto a.k.a A-Star also scored 3 stars .

Last edited by HammerHead : 20th December 2010 at 15:09.
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Old 21st December 2010, 19:20   #35
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Default Re: Chevy Spark 25,000 km Review

@hammerhead - its 2 star with strike through 1 star - typo error. please don't compare A- star to Spark as parameters for EuroNcap have become stringent since 2009.

please read entire test and compare both vehicles before arriving at conclusion

@vikrantD- regarding steering wheel grip - was steering wheel removed to install steering wheel grip.The grip looks good . What was the cost?
How is the chevrolet service? Do they over charge You?

my A- star has completed more than 15 months since purchase or shall I say 17 months since Manufacture.I have written a review about it, links to it are below
http://www.team-bhp.com/forum/long-t...continues.html
Please note - that brakes in A- star locks easily even slightest hard braking so I would recommend ABS in A-star

Happy Motoring!
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Old 22nd December 2010, 14:52   #36
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Default Re: Chevy Spark 25,000 km Review

Quote:
Originally Posted by FrozeninTime View Post
@hammerhead - its 2 star with strike through 1 star - typo error. please don't compare A- star to Spark as parameters for EuroNcap have become stringent since 2009.
This is from the EuroNCAP site.
"The underlying dynamic tests are identical to those before 2009, except for the addition of a test for Whiplash neck injury protection in rear impact."

Also, Euro NCAP now rewards not only Seatbelt reminders, but also Speed Limiters and the standard fitment of Electronic Stability Control.

Quote:
Please read entire test and compare both vehicles before arriving at conclusion.
Read it again.

Here is the reason why Spark has 2stars + 1star struck through.
"Compression of the driver's chest in side impact represented an unacceptably high risk of life-threatening injury. As a result, the final star of the adult occupant rating is struck through."

Remember A-Star retained its 3rd Star because of Side body airbags which Indian A-Star don't have.

Last edited by HammerHead : 22nd December 2010 at 14:53.
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Old 10th January 2011, 11:09   #37
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Default Re: Chevy Spark 25,000 km Review

Quote:
Originally Posted by FrozeninTime View Post

@vikrantD- regarding steering wheel grip - was steering wheel removed to install steering wheel grip.The grip looks good . What was the cost?
How is the chevrolet service? Do they over charge You?

my A- star has completed more than 15 months since purchase or shall I say 17 months since Manufacture.I have written a review about it, links to it are below
http://www.team-bhp.com/forum/long-t...continues.html
Please note - that brakes in A- star locks easily even slightest hard braking so I would recommend ABS in A-star

Happy Motoring!
@FrozeninTime: Firstly, wish you a very happy new year. Secondly, sorry for the delayed reply as I was out on a business trip.

I read your A-Star review and liked it a lot. Short and concise. Very well written.

No, the steering wheel was not removed to install the grip and I have never heard anyone of doing that. it costed 200 bucks. It looks (looked) good but was not comfy so I had it off in the first month itself. Need to get to a professional interior guy and get the grip firmly fit and also redo the seat covers.

The current Chevy service guys at Nikhil Motors are pretty good. I had a very bad experience with SC Motors (former Udit) at Thane. And no, they do have not overcharged me...atleast till date.

I test drove the A-Star when it was launched and I was least impressed with the ride quality. But I kind of liked the A-Start automatic. Its a breeze in a city like mumbai.
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Old 3rd April 2011, 23:57   #38
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Default Re: Chevy Spark 25,000 km Review

I also got a spark in native place, kerala. Most of the issues reported in this forum related to Spark happened to our car too. Its 2008 model LT and 4000 kms in odo. The speedo meter stopped on very second day of delivery. The dealer seems to be waiting for us to come with that issue. so as soon as we arrived, they started working on the car and delivered the car in evening with the issue.

I guess instead of revealing it as a manufacturing issue, they are just hiding it by secretly fixing it!!!

Then in last 3 year (just the warranty got over), the back shockup was replaced 2 times. This again will be a manufacturing issue/ alignment issue?? or an act on part of the dealer (GM motors, Perinthalmanna) to charge the owner company - GM india?? I am little worried since warranty is over and now each replacement costs around 3500rs.
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Old 17th October 2011, 12:46   #39
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Default Re: Chevy Spark 25,000 km Review

Mods: Please change the title to:

Chevy Spark 25,000 Km Review; UPDATE: CNGed at 35,000 Km (Pg. 3)

So the job changed in August 2011 and the daily drives increased to 70 kms a day from home to work at Malad. I take the Ghodbunder Road to work as JVLR is pathetic.

Monthly petrol bills shot to 9 grand and then the Govt. did it again; hiked the fuel rates. Me and my wife debating on selling off the Spark and getting a diesel one. But the entire mathematics was not working out as with new car comes: cost of the diesel car+insurance=loss considering just 3 yrs and 35 K on the Spark and its pathetic resale value. So we finally decided to sacrifice the boot and take the big jump.

I live on the Eastern Express Highway right behind Barbeque Nation in Thane. There is one Lovato Kit installer in the Shehnai Hall complex who does a pretty good job. He is also an authorized kit installer for Ashtavinayak Motors.

So anyways, the inquiry was done, had to pay 30 K for the kit and 2 K for the RTO procedures and the kit was installed.

First Impressions:

1. The car felt heavy once switched to gas. Maybe cos I was always used to the sudden sprint from the petrol engine.

2. The car was sitting low at the rear due to the 65 Kg dead weight of the tank in the boot. Had to take car of this ASAP.

3. The 10 kg capacity CNG tank eats in 7.6 to 8 kg of gas every tank fill. Tank fills vary due to the pressure at the pump on that day.

4. On one tank, the car goes roughly 170-190 odd kms. Thats Rs. 250 for a tank of gas. Roughly works out to 20-22 kms to a Kg....which is a pretty darn good mileage !!!!

5. Monthly fuel expense has gone down to Rs. 3,500 per month from Rs. 9000. That's would be roughly 40% savings in fuel bills. Should I be complaining for loss of boot space??? Hell no.

6. It has not crossed 37,000 kms and I am enjoying every bit of it.

Insurance went up: I had already paid the premium of Rs. 5600 for the year. As per standard procedures, I had to inform the insurance guys once the kit was installed. The representative came over, clicked photos of the kit installed and took some required documents and signature. I had to pay Rs. 564 extra on account of CNG conversion. All in all, a sweet deal, plus my car is safely insured.

"Guys, please get the car immediately insured once you convert it to CNG. One person I knew never informed his insurance company. He got hit in the city by a BEST bus and the insurance company would not process his claim as the car was CNGed. It does not relate at all to the accident, but the car is CNGed and he had not paid the extra premium."

Servicing: Once the fitting was done, I got my car serviced. But this time, since my 3 year warranty was done with, I had to look for some local service center rather than get fleeced by the dealers. I have this great ex-Skoda guy in Mulund who works on all the cars, and he does a wonderful job.

1. Regular servicing

2. All oils changed since it was 35 K

3. Rubber part changed just above the rear spring to increase the height of the car.

4. Changed spark plugs.

This was the first time I was totally satisfied after driving a serviced Spark. Now I am very happy. He has suggested that I should change the engine oil every 5000 kms and the spark plugs every 10,000 kms to ensure my cars runs well on CNG for a longer period. Well, I will just take his advice and save money.

Am now on the look out for a classy carrier to complete the long trip arrangements. The cars runs very well on CNG. Sometimes, I can't even tell whether I am on CNG or petrol. It's just about getting used to it.

I intend to use this car for a long time now. Will be my primary car from home to work on CNG. Will keep regularly servicing it and spending on the other mechanicals will are bound to take a hit sometime or the other. But what the heck? I really don't care as I am saving a lot. Plus, it perfectly makes sense to keep using your 3 to 5 yr old car instead of getting a new one.

So guys, who are still wondering whether to make that switch, go ahead and do it and save lots of money.
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Old 5th November 2011, 22:23   #40
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Default Re: Chevy Spark 25,000 km Review

Quote:
Originally Posted by VikrantD View Post
Mods: Please change the title to:

Chevy Spark 25,000 Km Review; UPDATE: CNGed at 35,000 Km (Pg. 3)



2. The car was sitting low at the rear due to the 65 Kg dead weight of the tank in the boot. Had to take car of this ASAP.

.
Hi!

i have chevy spark 2008 model and has wonderfully done 30000 km. Average running is around 1100 km per month and becomes costly to run this cute car because of petrol prices. So i was thinking of getting a CNG kit fitted. But i had following few concerns. it would be greatful if i could get your useful comments about them:

1. i have only one car and i am not planning to buy a second atleast in next 2 years. but since CNG cylinder eats up the entire boot space it might be a little worry going on vacations.
2. 65kg dead space + 1 or 2 passengers at the back 50% of the time. the car will sit horribly low. wont it? does it affect shockers?
3. getting PUC done and that insurance thing is a pain or is it easy?
4. my mom gets scared after hearing news about CNG cars getting burnt, is it safe? i think it is.
5. i heard from few chevy spark owners who installed CNG kits that the car misfiers/backfiers a lot and maintenance cost has increased significantly.


Expecting your valuable inputs.

Regards,
Prateek (a paasionate carophile)
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Old 6th November 2011, 11:35   #41
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Default Re: Chevy Spark 25,000 km Review

Do you get stepney type CNG tanks? It is available for LPG kits. The tank will sit inside the stepney well and your boot space will be free. It comes with the Lovato LPG kit.
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Old 7th November 2011, 09:48   #42
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Default Re: Chevy Spark 25,000 km Review

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Do you get stepney type CNG tanks? It is available for LPG kits. The tank will sit inside the stepney well and your boot space will be free. It comes with the Lovato LPG kit.
No friend, toroidal tanks are not available for CNG. That option is only available for LPG.
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Old 7th November 2011, 10:22   #43
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Default Re: Chevy Spark 25,000 km Review

[quote=car-o-phile;2568751]Hi!

i have chevy spark 2008 model and has wonderfully done 30000 km. Average running is around 1100 km per month and becomes costly to run this cute car because of petrol prices. So i was thinking of getting a CNG kit fitted. But i had following few concerns. it would be greatful if i could get your useful comments about them:

Mine is also a 2008 model. Its beautiful.

1. i have only one car and i am not planning to buy a second atleast in next 2 years. but since CNG cylinder eats up the entire boot space it might be a little worry going on vacations.

This is my only car too. Yes, the cylinder eats up the entire boot. Vacations should not be a worry as you get nice overhead carriers these days. Many people are worried about spoiling the look of their car. But, the cute carrier really does not look bad.

It will definitely be a task to cover the luggage with say a tarpaulin cloth in the rains. But that should not be a problem either. The cloth takes care of it.

And here's the math. I travel 2000 km per month. My petrol expense was almost 10,000 a month. I am now spending about 3500. Should I really worry about a damn boot? No !!


2. 65kg dead space + 1 or 2 passengers at the back 50% of the time. the car will sit horribly low. wont it? does it affect shockers?

The car can be raised at the rear. Mine is. Let me see what my mechanic exactly did and get back to you on this.

I really don't think the shocks will be affected. They are designed for our beautiful Indian roads. And I live in a lovely city called Mumbai with "the most lovely roads". My car shocks are fine.


3. getting PUC done and that insurance thing is a pain or is it easy?

Emissions are lower for CNG than petrol. Correct me if I am wrong. PUC should not be a worry.

Insurance: You HAVE TO inform your insurance company once you convert to CNG. If the insurance is already paid for, they will charge you a nominal difference after a physical inspection. I paid 560 bucks after converting to CNG.


4. my mom gets scared after hearing news about CNG cars getting burnt, is it safe? i think it is.

Don't worry. Its safe. Tell your mom that the buses and taxis which she rides in are all CNG. Plus, it depends upon how well you maintain your car and how well informed you are about CNG.


5. i heard from few chevy spark owners who installed CNG kits that the car misfiers/backfiers a lot and maintenance cost has increased significantly.

Not the same with my car. I have not yet experienced this.

Maintenance: Always a debatable point. If you are the types who regularly maintains his car, then the maintenance cost would be the same as that on petrol. Here's what has been advised by my mechanic. I have to service the car at every 5000 kms (which is anyways the case for Spark). I have to change the engine oil every 5000 kms (again, same for most of the cars). I have to change the spark plugs every 10,000 kms (this one is IMP. has to be followed).


Look buddy. I too had similar doubts before I migrated to CNG. But with these petrol prices, I just had to take the plunge. And now I am all smiles when I drive out from the petrol pump. I would say go for it. The more you think over it, the more time you will waste and the petrol prices will just keep going north. However, if you are still unsure, I will message my cell number. Call me. I can always try and give you more info.
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Old 7th November 2011, 10:25   #44
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Default Re: Chevy Spark 25,000 km Review

Quote:
Originally Posted by car-o-phile View Post
Hi!

i have chevy spark 2008 model and has wonderfully done 30000 km. Average running is around 1100 km per month and becomes costly to run this cute car because of petrol prices. So i was thinking of getting a CNG kit fitted. But i had following few concerns. it would be greatful if i could get your useful comments about them:

1. i have only one car and i am not planning to buy a second atleast in next 2 years. but since CNG cylinder eats up the entire boot space it might be a little worry going on vacations.
2. 65kg dead space + 1 or 2 passengers at the back 50% of the time. the car will sit horribly low. wont it? does it affect shockers?
3. getting PUC done and that insurance thing is a pain or is it easy?
4. my mom gets scared after hearing news about CNG cars getting burnt, is it safe? i think it is.
5. i heard from few chevy spark owners who installed CNG kits that the car misfiers/backfiers a lot and maintenance cost has increased significantly.


Expecting your valuable inputs.

Regards,
Prateek (a paasionate carophile)
You do not have "message option" in your profile. I can't message you my number. Here's my email. Ping me. I will send you my number: deshmukh.vikrant@gmail.com.
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Old 8th November 2011, 11:16   #45
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Default Re: Chevy Spark 25,000 km Review

Vikrant,

First Congratulations on completing 25K on your spark. I too have the Blazing Red Spark LT and agree that it is a fantastic car! Your observations about SC auto is spot on! The Morons charged me Labour of RS 900 on Running Repair inspite the CAR being under CPCO. I too go to Nikhil Auto and agree that they are much better in servicing the Car. My car's ODO is around 24.5 k and the rear suspension trouble is worrysome. With 2 months warranty remaining- i think i should get that checked ASAP

Things changed in my car under warranty

1. Front Disc Brakes
2. Tail pipe end can (Had corrosion)
3. Rear brake Wheel Cyclinder (Both sides)- for which SC charged me and wan't able to fix the problem.

All this was done by nikhil Automobiles and I'm satisfied by their service.

Sudipt
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