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Old 20th November 2010, 14:55   #1
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Default My Maruti WagonR CNG. EDIT : 50,000 kms up!

Hi Everyone,

For the past six months I was thinking of buying a new car after my 15 year old Maruti 800 started showing its age. It would have given me years of more service (I got the fitness renewed, fitted four new tyres etc.) but I had to shift my job to Gurgaon, New Delhi - cover a distance of 70 kms everyday. Reliability and performance became a bit of an issue.

Also despite pumping 20,000 over 3 years (king copper coil, cooling fan at the back, below boot, gas refills, compressor repairs) to make the AC work on my Maruti, it was a failed attempt. So change was something that had to happen. Team-bhp was of great help to me in taking the decision, literally at every step. The question was what to buy. I wanted a functional, easy to drive car that would be economical to run (FE and maintenance). Driven by economic concerns and affordability of a diesel (5 lacs was the stretched budget) I thought of buying Indica Vista Diesel. Tata's service was a concern and so I went through all the blogs written by fellow Bhpians and realized the car wasn't a fool proof one. After reading some long term ownership experience (37,000) I contacted a fellow bhpian who owned a Vista and his advice was to avoid Tata. He had sold his Vista diesel after 40,000 kilometers due to quality concerns. My fears were confirmed. Vista was off my list.

I looked for the diesel range in Maruti but it was nearly 50,000 costlier and with a wait period of 2 months. So that was off too. I didn't trust any other car manufacturers because of their history, lack of a proven track record and high maintenance despite their tempting line up. A CNG was the only option and Santro looked the best. Here too Team Bhp came to my help. I got to know that Santro was an old model and it might go for a face lift in early 2011 and hence my purchase would get devalued in a short time span. I didnt want to be driving an outdated car barely 3 months after its purchase. Maruti had tweaked its range and upscaled its models. It had invested heavily and at least for 5 years my purchase would have a resale value. I started looking for Maruti models.

Alto CNG was out because it was almost the same as Maruti. Alto k10 I found interesting and similar to the driving comfort I experienced in Maruti 800 from a purely road view and handling point of view. I detested Estillo and found Wagon R good but top heavy. The choice was clearly between Alto k10 and Wagon R. At 50,000 higher cost, Wagon R looked a notch above Alto K10 but I wasn't sure I could handle it well, despite driving cars for 10 years.

I posted a thread on my confusion on A pillars and my family's doubt that out of the two Wagon R had a higher social standing. I got many encouraging responses - Bhpians came to my rescue Almost everyone said I would get used to the changed design of Wagon R in a matter of few days. With so many suggestions asking me not to be scared of A pillars blocking the view and that they were present for safety, I felt tempted. What clinched the deal was that Alto K10 didn't have a CNG option. This meant I would have to get it retro-fitted by the dealer. Since Maruti doesn't give factory guarantee on these retro-fitted cars I would be at the mercy of the dealer who fitted the kit. Also the guarantee would be just 2 years instead of 4 which I could get otherwise from Maruti. The salesman said that the new CNG fitted cars were way ahead of the experience that retro fitted CNG cars had to offer. They were computer controlled, had body reinforcement for CNG cyclinder, had an auto changeover option and switched to petrol based on the temperature of the engine. Since my Maruti 800 too has a retrofitted kit, I realized he was not telling me a lie. Petrol and CNG tuning in the retro fitted car has always given me nightmares. I had to go to the workshop 2-3 times to get the tuning to my satisfaction. These overworked guys have difficulty sparing the 10 minutes of attention that a good tuning requires and I must say I was completely frustrated by their non-professional approach for the 4.5 years I interacted with them.

So I decided to buy Wagon R CNG version. But the wait was for over 1.5 months. Desperate, I phoned several dealers and to my surprise Saya Motors, GT Karnal had one ready. I booked my order that day and put an application for car loan.

On Sunday 14th November 2010, I took my delivery. I took their driver's help to take the car home as the road was congested. On the way I took over to driving and found it was easy to drive. The left fender view was something I would need getting used to and a bit of the A pillars. I resisted the sales pitch of Saya guys for accessories (14,500 for Nippon music system was I felt too much though it had a good feel and was integrated). I took the car straight to a reputed car accessory shop and spent 17,000 on fitments. These include - USB music system by Pioneer, Speaker by Pioneer, Reverse Sensors (Autocop), Remote locking (Auto cop), Gear lock (Auto cop), floor mats, side mouldings, door markers etc. All these things have a 2 year warranty. The gear lock has 5 year warranty. It took them 2 and a half hours to fit these.

From here I went straight to Sai Baba Temple in Najafgarh. I was terrified of the night drive but my son insisted we take it for pooja first. I drove slowly and reached Najafgarh Sai temple in one hour, with me driving slowly and never exceeding 3rd gear - a complete contrast to my driving style in Maruti 800! I realized I would have estimation problems (for close and tight traffic conditions) but the accessory shop refused to fix an estimation rod on my bumper.

He said the bumpers of Wagon R were very flimsy and a kid pulling on the estimation rod would easily bring the bumper down. When I told him that my Maruti 800 has an estimation rod for 10 years and no one could pull its bumper down, he said the new Maruti range is nothing compared to the old Maruti 800. Indeed the Maruti 800 bumper is solid and its sheet thickness much higher than Wagon R. I tested by pressing the sheets of both the cars with my hand. It is incredible how thin Maruti has made the sheet in Wagon R. In olden days, compared to the Ambassador we had, Maruti 800's sheet work seemed like wafer. And now we have even thinner sheets! Imagine. The accessory shop, as an alternative, offered me to fix plastic antennas with double sided tapes for estimation but at 200 they were too costly and useless as antennas. Their visibility too was poor (they short). So I went home and fixed the square pipes used for external electric fittings with a double sided tape on both the sides of the bumper, keeping their lenght long enough to be visible from inside. The car now looks a bit odd but I feel its better that it looks odd instead of have a dent. The reverse sensor is a boon and works well. I am glad I fitted it. I have to park the car in tight spaces and that is why I got it fitted. The 2,500 is worth the investment, I think. I also got the warranty extended from 3 to 4 years by paying 2,500 extra. I am now enjoying the ride and getting used to it.

Here are my first impressions on Wagon R CNG:
>The drive experience is extraordinary. While driving you realize very little difference between petrol and CNG mode. Maruti has done well in marrying CNG technology with Petrol models.


>The ride looks literally like you are riding an elephant. The color of my Wagon R is glistening gray (mouse color) and it looks all the more like an elephant. Lols.


>The distance between the wiper lever and steering wheel is less. For a guy with big hands (which is me) I have difficulty not switching on the wiper levers by mistake whenever my hand moved over the steering. This happened many times. I will have to get used to it.


>Steering makes noises when I turn it even slightly while the car is stationery.


>Indicators donít make noise loud enough to be heard. And the yellow light of the dashboard hides the yellow light of the led indicators. In my Maruti 800 the green leds were better and more noticeable.


>The feel of the car is unmistakably SUV but the wafer thin body sheet is a joke. Had it been made a bit more solid it would have felt safe and great. For a 10% increase in FE, the compromise in sheet thickness is uncalled for. Could have been a greater car with a more solid sheet work.



>The A pillars will take getting used to, in terms of road visibility, but not much of an issue compared to many other cars.


>Rear view is great for reversing. Helped with the rear sensor, it makes the job much easier.


>Gear engagement is smooth and terrific.


>The car looks big but from the outside it is actually small.


>It's spacious and comfortable, with huge leg space. Boot is almost non-existent with the CNG cylinder of 10 kg.


I will post more observations as I get to see them.


I thank you all for helping me take this decision. Team-bhp rocks!
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Old 20th November 2010, 19:13   #2
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congrats syravi. Wagon R CNG is a very sensible choice.
I am also thinking about it.
Do update us on the FE that you are getting in city driving. And how much is the CNG tank capacity? The Maruti site mentions the tank capacity as equivalent to 60 ltr of water capacity, but I am not sure how much that equates to CNG.
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Old 20th November 2010, 22:46   #3
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Congrats Ravi.
Fitting those square pipes sounds interesting ,could you please post some pictures of the same for us to understand it better.
Anyways drive safe and take care.

Cheers
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Old 22nd November 2010, 12:21   #4
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Congrats SYRAVI on the CNG Wagon R, thanks for taking off a few KGs of carbon from our skies.

I'm also considering a wagin r green, wanted to get some insights,
1. Whats the mileage its giving against the claimed AARI figures.

2. If my drive is lets say of 4 kms, would the auto CNG mean that i'll run initial 1.5-2 kms on petrol till the engine heats up and then the auto CNG will kick in??

3. Can you post some pics of the space available in boot?

Last edited by sunnyside : 22nd November 2010 at 12:23.
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Old 22nd November 2010, 19:11   #5
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Congrats on the new purchase. Enjoy the turning radius and space up front. Drive safe!!
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Old 29th November 2010, 12:17   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sunnyside View Post
Congrats SYRAVI on the CNG Wagon R, thanks for taking off a few KGs of carbon from our skies.

I'm also considering a wagin r green, wanted to get some insights,
1. Whats the mileage its giving against the claimed AARI figures.

2. If my drive is lets say of 4 kms, would the auto CNG mean that i'll run initial 1.5-2 kms on petrol till the engine heats up and then the auto CNG will kick in??

3. Can you post some pics of the space available in boot?

1 >>Currently, I am clocking about 75 kms in 80 Rs (CNG costs 27.5 Rs a Kg in New Delhi). I have driven 650 kms till date

2>>The switch over from Petrol to CNG is quick. Hardly 100 mts or less. So it wont require to run for 1.5 to 2 kms.

Yet to test the car's mileage and performance with Ac on as it is November and dont need an ac in this weather.

3>>Will post pics at the earliest.
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Old 9th March 2011, 12:52   #7
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Default 2010 Maruti Wagon R CNG- 7000 Kms review

Hi folks,

Just completed 7000 kms of the new Wagon R. I purchased the model in November 14, 2010. It had a factory fitted CNG.

While deciding between Wagon R and Alto K10, I did extensive research on the net and found Team BHP the most helpful community. In fact I joined to decide which car to buy.

It's time to return the favor to all those trying to analyze cars.

Here's my review. I would like to say, I have tried to be completely unbiased. I know many people who after buying something tend to justify the purchase at all cost. I am not that type. So it is not a fanatic's review but genuine.

What this review wonít cover is the effectiveness of AC since I havenít used it in the winter months.

My observations:

The CNG experience
The Car's CNG is definitely miles above the other venturi fitted CNG kits that can be fitted as an after purchase. Just like the company claims you don't feel the difference by switching from petrol to CNG. The CNG changeover is automatic, computer controlled and depending on heat and power requirements the CNG mode can switch to petrol automatically (I havenít experienced this changeover until now). The joy of CNG drive in the new Wagon R is something I can feel because I have had a retro fitted CNG on my Maruti 800. It felt very heavy and whenever I switched to petrol in my Maruti it felt like my car is like a brand new car. Not so in the new Wagon R. Driving in the CNG fold feels like driving in petrol mode.

Expensive but worth it
The CNG kit from the company is about 70,000 costlier than a Lx model with MASS CNG retro fit option. I was forced to go for Lxi because it is not fitted in any other model. The salesman said that their is no comparison between the factory fitted and the retro fitted CNG options and suggested I should go for this option. That he was not pushing an expensive product is clear from the following things:
>They did not have a factory fitted model currently and it required a waiting period of 2 months
>They earned more from retrofitted cars
>The guy who fill CNG at the station said that the filling from the petrol lid (CNG gas is filled at the same point from petrol) is safer
>More gas is packed in the 9 kg cylinder than a 10 kg cylinder because of the NGV model
>It gives more mileage than other retro fitted kits, according to the guy who fills CNG at the pump station I am a regular
>Changeover from petrol to CNG is quick and happens in about a minute. It is shorter if the car has run long on CNG and has been stopped for some reason

Mileage
I keep a track of petrol and CNG costs in a dairy. I always have about 600 Rs of petrol and top it immediately when it falls to one notch indicator. So totaling the money spent on petrol and CNG I got a mileage of about 1.15 per kilometer with AC. This included petrol used for starting. I have seen many people who do not have petrol at all in their cars. But this is a bad practice. Apart from getting struck, it damages the engine. So I always have both the options
No need to drive 1,000 kms on petrol
I was told I can drive straight on CNG mode. Had it been a retro fitted mode, I would have been asked by the distributor to drive at least 1,000 kms to check if everything is alright with the car. This saved me 4,500 rupees
4th year extended Guarantee
I have a 4th year extended warranty on the car. This is only available for factory fitted cars. If you retro-fit it from where you purchase the car, the company guarantee gets void. You are at the mercy of your distributor for 2 years. I hear they do honor their warranties though because they charge you almost double from what it would cost outside.
CNG vs Diesel
Seeing the queues at CNG stations, I was tempted to go for the diesel options as it was easier to refill. I drive nearly 80 kms a day. I am happy I took the CNG options instead of Diesel. Saving a lot of money and have the car I love. The diesel option was available only in Swift which I donít like as much as Wagon R. The maximum drive that it can do on a full cylinder is 190-200 kms, without AC. So I need to fill it after every two trips to my office (160 kms). Or I will have to drive on petrol mode.
Road View & Maneuverability
Wagon R is surprisingly easy to maneuver and park. I had doubts of A pillar views. But in Wagon R the fron, road view is better than many other cars. It has a wide screen and the pillar is more towards the extremes than in the middle. You have to get into an Estilo to know what I am saying. Estiloís front pillars block the road view much more dangerously than Wagon Rís
Safe Speed
I felt that the Wagon R feels safe at 80-90 kmph. Beyond this it looks a bit shaky. I am not a fast driver. I drive it around 60 kmph which is my safe speed
Driving with Heater on
Driving with heater during the winter months didnít strain the engine one bit. If it affects the mileage (I donít know) then my figures should take in view this too.
Thin Sheet metal work
Wagon Rís weakest thing is the sheet metal work. It uses a very thin sheet metal compared to older Wagon R and Maruti. At places, esp near the door, the material sags down in a funny way that makes it look like a plastic toy. If you are a sheet metal freak, I suggest you check other cars. Even Santroís sheet metal seemed more solid
Bumpers
Once again the bumpers look flimsy. The accessory vendor refused to put the flag staff which I wanted for estimation saying that a child could bring the bumper down if he pulled at it. He also refused to affix the flag pole in the crevice between the bonnet and body for the same reason
Space
While the car looks spacious, there is no space to keep anything. The space over the dashboard slides to the windscreen and everything starts slipping on the dashboard. Anything I keep on my rear seats falls down even if I brake lightly. The seats donít have ribs that can prevent the fall of things. The boot is practically gone with the CNG cylinder sitting on it.
Indicators
Wagon R indicator donít make enough noise inside the car. The indicator lights on the dashboard are not bright enough. They donít fall back to the neutral zone when the car turns. And from my height they hide behind the steering wheel. There have been several times people have pointed at my Ďcontinue to blinkí indicators. Now I have fallen into a stupid habit of checking the dashboard again and again.
How it took a hit
I turned in confusion from left to right and was hit by an Accent from behind. My bumper took a small dent and my right mud flap was gone. We had a polite tiff and realized that both drivers were on error. The bumper kept entangling the tyre when I tried to start the car and I had to distort it a bit to reach home. The accentís bonnet hood looked distorted and his bumper too seemed to have loosened. In the evening I got the bumper repaired for 50 bucks. Could not get a single flap Ė they only offer a set at 340. Will try to get a single piece.
Engine noise
The new Wagon R engine is quite noiseless and smooth so far
Seating comfort
Wagon R ride is very spacey and comfortable. Because of the height, getting in and out is very easy and comfortable
Styling
Wagon R gives the feel of an SUV. Only the thin sheet metal work is a joke. So it is a paper tiger, I guess
Best Color
I have a feeling that every car looks the grandest in one color. I did not want the Grey option that I landed with. But from the comments of others and the observations I have made, this color does the maximum justice to the model. Not because I have it, I really feel it. And to begin with I was forced to take the color as otherwise I would have had to wait for 2 months.
Service costs so far
I paid 1150 for the second service cost. 490 for wheel rotations and the rest on some chemical that declogs the fuel injectors. Plus Service taxes. It was a forced expense on me. My car runs on CNG most of the time so the chemical was probably not required. They did not ask my permission just added it and handed me the bill.
My conclusion
Wagon R is overall a good car but the interiors could have been more intelligently designed Ė flatter dashboard, ribbed seats etc for accommodating stuff. It is worth its price.
Ask me what I missed and what you need to know
If you have any queries you can send me a personal message or mail me at syravi@yahoo.com. I would be more than happy to reply to your queries.
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Old 9th March 2011, 13:36   #8
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Default re: 2010 Maruti Wagon R CNG- 7000 Kms review

Congrats on the car! I have been a wagonR owner and big fan of the car! IMHO, the car is just 'makkhan'. It is super smooth.
You are right, the sheet metal is very thin as compared to the old wagonR which i owned.
Did you face any rattles or some unusual noises from the cabin?

Do post some pictures!
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Old 9th March 2011, 13:43   #9
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Default re: 2010 Maruti Wagon R CNG- 7000 Kms review

Quote:
flatter dashboard, ribbed seats etc for accommodating stuff. It is worth its price
You put it right. The car is worth the value. The moment we starting putting those fancy dashboards and ribbed seats the price will look a lot steep. IMHO Wagon R is a fantastic buy for the money you pay and has excellent resale value.

Quote:
The space over the dashboard slides to the windscreen
From Zen to Wagon R, this space is actually used quite a lot. My friend has all her things tangled in this space in the Zen, while i almost always throw my Id Card or even books on the front of my friends Wagon R.

I guess we just need to use the space that is available.

Overall a great review that talks about what a real life user expects out of this car.

Congrats again.
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Old 9th March 2011, 15:36   #10
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Default re: 2010 Maruti Wagon R CNG- 7000 Kms review

Thats really a unbiased report and im sure people who are looking for CNG reviews, they will surely be helped by this thread.

Could you please let me know , how does the switch from CNG for petrol or vice versa happens , is it full automatic or its has to be done manually .
Also 80 kms a day is surely a lot of running in a day.
Till date how many kms you have covered ?

Drive safe .

Cheers
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Old 9th March 2011, 15:43   #11
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Default re: 2010 Maruti Wagon R CNG- 7000 Kms review

Quote:
Originally Posted by syravi View Post
What this review won’t cover is the effectiveness of AC since I haven’t used it in the winter months.

Driving with Heater on
Driving with heater during the winter months didn’t strain the engine one bit. If it affects the mileage (I don’t know) then my figures should take in view this too.

Service costs so far
I paid 1150 for the second service cost. 490 for wheel rotations and the rest on some chemical that declogs the fuel injectors. Plus Service taxes. It was a forced expense on me. My car runs on CNG most of the time so the chemical was probably not required. They did not ask my permission just added it and handed me the bill.
Hi syravi, Congratulations on your new WagonR. Drive safe and take good care of her (use turtle wax every two month and she will look good even after many years). Please complete your report by adding some pictures of the car.

Besides this i will suggest you to use AC for 3-5 min every month even in winter season. This will help circulating oil within AC components and prevent rusting and leakage. Using Heater doesn’t affect the mileage as heater works on coolant heat.
Avoid wheel rotation/alignment job from Maruti people as they charge very steep amount for this. Get this work done form outside tyre shop.
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Old 9th March 2011, 15:54   #12
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Default re: 2010 Maruti Wagon R CNG- 7000 Kms review

Quote:
Originally Posted by Schoudhury View Post
Thats really a unbiased report and im sure people who are looking for CNG reviews, they will surely be helped by this thread.

Could you please let me know , how does the switch from CNG for petrol or vice versa happens , is it full automatic or its has to be done manually .
Also 80 kms a day is surely a lot of running in a day.
Till date how many kms you have covered ?

Drive safe .

Cheers
The switch over to CNG is automatic and computer controlled
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Old 9th March 2011, 17:07   #13
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Default re: 2010 Maruti Wagon R CNG- 7000 Kms review

Quote:
Originally Posted by DMehta View Post
Congrats on the car! I have been a wagonR owner and big fan of the car! IMHO, the car is just 'makkhan'. It is super smooth.
You are right, the sheet metal is very thin as compared to the old wagonR which i owned.
Did you face any rattles or some unusual noises from the cabin?

Do post some pictures!
So far there have ben no rattling sounds inside the cabin. The car is smooth and noiseless.
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Old 9th March 2011, 17:17   #14
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Default re: 2010 Maruti Wagon R CNG- 7000 Kms review

Quote:
Originally Posted by syravi View Post
Hi folks,

Just completed 7000 kms of the new Wagon R. I purchased the model in November 14, 2010. It had a factory fitted CNG.

..................
...................
Here's my review. I would like to say, I have tried to be completely unbiased. I know many people who after buying something tend to justify the purchase at all cost. I am not that type. So it is not a fanatic's review but genuine.

.................................................. .................................................. ........ Service costs so far
I paid 1150 for the second service cost. 490 for wheel rotations and the rest on some chemical that declogs the fuel injectors. Plus Service taxes. It was a forced expense on me. My car runs on CNG most of the time so the chemical was probably not required. They did not ask my permission just added it and handed me the bill.
My conclusion
Wagon R is overall a good car but the interiors could have been more intelligently designed Ė flatter dashboard, ribbed seats etc for accommodating stuff. It is worth its price.
Ask me what I missed and what you need to know
If you have any queries you can send me a personal message or mail me at syravi@yahoo.com. I would be more than happy to reply to your queries.

Syrvi,

very good review . No-nonsense from the point of a view of an average indian car customer . I really liked it . I would recommend that you add pictures of the car , a detailed one with all those parts you mentioned which yyou found good or bad or average . It would give us in a better visualization .I am planning to get one for my parents , so it will be really a great help to 'see' the pros and cons from a users perspective .


Even if your car runs in CNG , i think it uses the spark plug so carbon deposits can clog it isnt it ? Atleast thats what I understand .

Good luck with the car and dont miss to post pics at the earliest .
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Old 9th March 2011, 19:32   #15
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Default re: 2010 Maruti Wagon R CNG- 7000 Kms review

Hey syravi, hearty congratulations on the sensible buy you made. Wishing you unlimited safe and happy miles with her. And a really good review too. As you said - unbiased.

Just a couple of things I'd like to know more about - out of curiosity...
>The guy who fill CNG at the station said that the filling from the petrol lid (CNG gas is filled at the same point from petrol) is safer

>More gas is packed in the 9 kg cylinder than a 10 kg cylinder because of the NGV model

Can you elaborate on these two points please? Any idea about the "WHY" / "HOW" aspects?

As for your "forced charges" at MASS, get used to that. Typical with a lot of Maruti service stations. The best way around is, specifically mention on the job card that for any modifications/replacements etc. you MUST be called and requested for a go ahead. And that for anything done without your consensus, you'll not be baring the charges.
Do look out if they change "bushings". Ask for the used ones and inspect them. Many a times they simply replace bushes in suspension etc. just for the money, and the used ones are actually as good as new.

Happy Wagon-ing!

Cheers!
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