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Old 27th July 2011, 15:52   #316
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Default Re: Chevrolet Beat TCDI Diesel : Test Drive & Review

I did a TD on Beat LT (with optional pack) yesterday and concluded that despite its strong points and weaknesses, Beat is not in the same league as Figo, Ritz or Swift; simply put the difference between Beat Diesel and Swift Diesel is the same as the difference between a Swift petrol and Santro.

Beat petrol may be considered in the same segment as swift due to their 1.2 liter engines, Beat diesel creates an altogether new segment of 1 liter diesel cars, something which can not be compared to the existing Swifts, Figos or even Indicas.


My own observations from a TD of Beat Diesel yesterday:

1. The turbo lag is 'almost' non existent; I reckon that with a 1 liter engine, reducing turo lag must have been a top priority because the 1liter engine would've been super sluggish starting from rest without turbo.

2. Noise and vibration inside the cabin is great at idling though it goes up considerably when you rev even slightly. Noise inside the cabin goes up multiple fold when driving, specially if you rev a little higher. The noise isn't the kind that you can appreciate, it is quite a rough noise that gets into the cabin at higher rpms.

3. Switching the AC ON increases noise and vibration, the engine doesn't shake much (for a diesel) on idle but shakes quite a lot when idling with the AC ON.

4. Gear shift is not crisp but very smooth however it feels too flimsy for a diesel, gives the impression that the gear lever will start shaking soon enough.

5. Reduced turbo lag helps with initial pick up but it runs out of breath in each gear too soon (the noise and vibrations tell you that @ 3000rpm).

6. If you rev in neutral, you'd notice that the engine gains rpm really slow for idle revving.

7. Engine noise from outside is slightly nano-ish with a diesel clatter added to it.

8. The interiors are nice in LT variant only (LT starts at 4.99 lacs ex showroom), other variants have horribly bland interiors with a single shade of dark gray all over. I am not trying to bash up this car but seriously, Santro (even the older one) and Alto have more pleasing interiors.

9. While the Beat has a decent body for a peppy petrol engine, I am not sure how the suspension and flimsy build will hold after 40k kms of running on a heavier engine and increased vibrations as compared to petrol.

10. Boot of-course remains the same as its petrol sibling, perhaps the smallest boot amongst all cars on the road.

11. The engine may be 'based' on the fiat multijet engine but this one liter diesel engine is yet to be tested in real world conditions and the test drive does not give a very promising feel about the future performance of this engine+body combination.

12. Beat D seems like an option if you are on a really tight budget and just can not stretch it any further to get a Figo or Ritz & then your obvious choice would be one of the lower end variants of Beat. People with a budget of Beat diesel LT would be better off buying a mid variant of Figo, Ritz or Swift.

13. Chevrolet's USP 3 year maintenance pack does not come free with this car, it needs to be purchased separately.

14. For those who consider reselling their car soon, the additional money paid today for buying a Ritz/ Swift instead of Beat will be recovered 1.5-2 times more when selling the car.
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Old 27th July 2011, 17:33   #317
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Default Re: Chevrolet Beat TCDI Diesel : Test Drive & Review

Quote:
Originally Posted by ff1609 View Post
My own observations from a TD of Beat Diesel yesterday:

9. While the Beat has a decent body for a peppy petrol engine, I am not sure how the suspension and flimsy build will hold after 40k kms of running on a heavier engine and increased vibrations as compared to petrol.
Thanks for the quick update FF. The only point that leaves me a bit confused is the one I have quoted above.

The build quality has been generally appreciated, even by GTO in his review, in fact, better than its direct competitor, Figo. You on the other hand suggest that the build is "flimsy". What part(s) specifically did you particularly find lacking in quality? Are you referring to the interiors / exteriors / both?
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Old 27th July 2011, 18:12   #318
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Default Re: Chevrolet Beat TCDI Diesel : Test Drive & Review

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Thanks for the quick update FF. The only point that leaves me a bit confused is the one I have quoted above.

The build quality has been generally appreciated, even by GTO in his review, in fact, better than its direct competitor, Figo. You on the other hand suggest that the build is "flimsy". What part(s) specifically did you particularly find lacking in quality? Are you referring to the interiors / exteriors / both?
I was referring to the basic structure and the exterior, it just didn't feel as sturdy as Figo or Swift, many members might find it absurd but I'd compare Beat's build quality with an Estilo or Santro. To me, the car's dimensions, look & feel don't seem adequate for the vibrations and weight of a diesel engine. You know how you hear the window glass channels, door panel and lock make a brief rattle when you slam shut the front door in a WagonR versus the thud in a VW or Ford; so beat has more of that rattle rather than the thud if you know what I mean. I just didn't get that well planted sturdy feel in a TD for about 8 kms.
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Old 27th July 2011, 21:13   #319
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Default Re: Chevrolet Beat TCDI Diesel : Test Drive & Review

Quote:
Originally Posted by ff1609 View Post
I was referring to the basic structure and the exterior, it just didn't feel as sturdy as Figo or Swift, many members might find it absurd but I'd compare Beat's build quality with an Estilo or Santro. To me, the car's dimensions, look & feel don't seem adequate for the vibrations and weight of a diesel engine. You know how you hear the window glass channels, door panel and lock make a brief rattle when you slam shut the front door in a WagonR versus the thud in a VW or Ford; so beat has more of that rattle rather than the thud if you know what I mean. I just didn't get that well planted sturdy feel in a TD for about 8 kms.

I have a spark ( four years and 51100kms old), and there is no body rattle at all. Although I agree with you that suspension has never been the strong points of Chevy's ( almost all the sparks, aveos and Uvas I know have gone through free shock replacement in warranty).

But leaving that apart, the overall bulid quality is way above the marutis and Hyundais in their respective segments. Agreed that rear doors might not close with thud but still hearing the window channels is out of question. If the Spark is anything to go by, the Beat might be bettrer in that terms.

BTW, does any body know the gross engine weight of both petrol and diesel. I suspect that 1.2ltr petrol must be heavier of the two. If yes, the suspension should not be any problem in the long run.
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Old 27th July 2011, 21:38   #320
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Default Re: Chevrolet Beat TCDI Diesel : Test Drive & Review

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Originally Posted by kkg View Post
I have a spark ( four years and 51100kms old), and there is no body rattle at all. Although I agree with you that suspension has never been the strong points of Chevy's ( almost all the sparks, aveos and Uvas I know have gone through free shock replacement in warranty).

But leaving that apart, the overall bulid quality is way above the marutis and Hyundais in their respective segments. Agreed that rear doors might not close with thud but still hearing the window channels is out of question. If the Spark is anything to go by, the Beat might be bettrer in that terms.

BTW, does any body know the gross engine weight of both petrol and diesel. I suspect that 1.2ltr petrol must be heavier of the two. If yes, the suspension should not be any problem in the long run.
@ff1609 - I have to agree with kkg.. I test drove both the petrol and diesel beats on pretty pathetic sections of road, and i actually did aim for quite a few potholes at decent speeds too.. No window rattle or suspension bottoming out, had my parents in the rear seat and they were quite comfortable, didnt complain about the suspension at least. Nothing threatened to break loose, no rougue squeaks and rattles, felt just fine!

With regards to engine noise and vibration () - Pardon me if i am wrong, but most modern diesel cars i have driven / sat in such as the Swift, Figo, Fiesta, Punto etc have that god awful diesel clatter on the outside, and a fair bit of sound coming in on the inside too. The Beat D does not feel worse than that and is in fact quite decent at speeds of ~80kmph. Switch on the radio or the music and its not really audible over that! I did not feel that excessive vibration with the AC on while idling, but i will try and check that out again.

I agree the climate control is noisy initially with the fan running at a high speed, but then once the cabin gets cool it settles down with minimal fan noise.

This car kills the i10 with ease and gives the figo a fair run for its money, not superior to it by any stretch, but not significantly worse than it either. GTO has already stated both cars respective strengths and weaknesses which are absolutely on the dot!
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Old 27th July 2011, 21:56   #321
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Default Re: Chevrolet Beat TCDI Diesel : Test Drive & Review

Quote:
Originally Posted by ff1609 View Post
While the Beat has a decent body for a peppy petrol engine, I am not sure how the suspension and flimsy build will hold after 40k kms of running on a heavier engine and increased vibrations as compared to petrol.
Sticking strictly to Body, Beat is one of the Best in the Indian Market. It is much better than Maruti and Hyundai. It is even Better than Figo. The curvy design aids to its stiffness in some areas. Built quality wise (Sheet metal/Strength POV) is can compete directly with Fabia/Polo/Punto.
I dont see any problem whatsoever.
The problem however is somwhere else. Clips between Body and bumpers, clips between Backdoor and the plastic etc.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ff1609 View Post
Beat D seems like an option if you are on a really tight budget and just can not stretch it any further to get a Figo or Ritz & then your obvious choice would be one of the lower end variants of Beat. People with a budget of Beat diesel LT would be better off buying a mid variant of Figo, Ritz or Swift.
Agreed but Beat promises to provide better FE than everyone else.
That should attract some buyers too.
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Old 27th July 2011, 23:31   #322
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Default Re: Chevrolet Beat TCDI Diesel : Test Drive & Review

A picture of the Beat's interiors, all variants except top end LT look like this.
Attached Thumbnails
Chevrolet Beat TCDI Diesel : Test Drive & Review-beat.jpg  

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Old 27th July 2011, 23:42   #323
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Default Re: Chevrolet Beat TCDI Diesel : Test Drive & Review

Quote:
Originally Posted by ff1609 View Post
Well it makes sense to pay extra and buy a swift because there is vast difference in the performance of both cars. I don't know how big or small the difference looks in specs on paper but comparing beat diesel to swift diesel is like comparing a swift and santro. I did a test drive and realised this car creates a new lower segment of diesel cars which didn't exist until now, it can't be compared to swift/ ritz or figo.

Interiors are nice only in the top end LT variant, in other variants (LS etc.) interiors are worst in class (you have to see them to believe what I am saying).

hmm your view is correct and no doubt about that.. but the thing is I have to get a small car just for myself. I already have an SX4 diesel and Aria for family use apart from the SX4 P that I am using. So I am not looking for a particular segment. I am only looking for a small diesel car. I am put off by unavailability of rear power windows in Figo. And have already used a Swift Petrol and Diesel earlier so in case there isnt much difference in the new swift then ill be only wasting money when i could have just retained my Swift D.

And I will only go for LT model in any case as anything lower than LT again doesnt have rear power windows.. In that case I am better off buying Figo and the dealer is ready to exchange the car as well.. Chevvy and Maruti dealers are not responding at all..

I am almost certain about getting Beat D in case it is exchanged otherwise I will receive swift on first day of its launch in anycase.. Anyway will wait and watch..
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Old 28th July 2011, 10:28   #324
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Default Re: Chevrolet Beat TCDI Diesel : Test Drive & Review

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Originally Posted by kkg View Post
If the Spark is anything to go by, the Beat might be bettrer in that terms.

BTW, does any body know the gross engine weight of both petrol and diesel. I suspect that 1.2ltr petrol must be heavier of the two. If yes, the suspension should not be any problem in the long run.
Not just better, Beat's build quality is far superior than spark and gives a fair run for money to the entire segment as far as build quality goes. Its not for nothing that the even Beat Petrol with its similar dimensions to I10 and smaller dimension than Micra still weighs 90 KG higher than I10 and 60 KG higher than Micra.

To see the engine weight difference of the Petrol and Diesel all you have to check is the GVW of both vehicles. I saw somewhere beat diesel is 1037 Kgs while Beat petrol will be 960 Kgs. As per my understanding, diesel engines with similar capacities to petrol engine will weigh atleast 2.5 to 3 times higher than Petrol engine.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ff1609 View Post
I was referring to the basic structure and the exterior, it just didn't feel as sturdy as Figo or Swift, many members might find it absurd but I'd compare Beat's build quality with an Estilo or Santro. To me, the car's dimensions, look & feel don't seem adequate for the vibrations and weight of a diesel engine.
Dont think its true FF1609. Do not go by softer looks due to paint quality softer bend on outer skin panels. I think going by thuds on doors, Thicker steel on outer panels and most importantly vehicle weights, build wise it is closer to swift and better than Figo. In no way Beat is comparable with estilo or any maruti cars except probably Ritz and Swift. One should compare the dimension and Gross vehicle weight ratio of these cars to understand what i mean. Beat is definitely sturdier.

GTO would need your views here to clarify it.
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Old 28th July 2011, 22:13   #325
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Default Re: Chevrolet Beat TCDI Diesel : Test Drive & Review

I cannot agree on the buid quality FF1609 was talking about.It is far more than maruti's models but comparable with swift.Only noise I ever faced was from suspensions,which in the first service,got fixed.And also since the Beat D engines are soft-mounted,It should not give much vibration as said
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Old 28th July 2011, 22:23   #326
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Default Re: Chevrolet Beat TCDI Diesel : Test Drive & Review

Quote:
Originally Posted by ff1609 View Post
I was referring to the basic structure and the exterior, it just didn't feel as sturdy as Figo or Swift, many members might find it absurd but I'd compare Beat's build quality with an Estilo or Santro.

To me, the car's dimensions, look & feel don't seem adequate for the vibrations and weight of a diesel engine.
Thats a very un-scientific way of looking at it.

So a ugly boxy car like Logan seems sturdy to you but a funky stylish car like Beat must be fragile? Drive an older Swift with rattles and tell me which one has better build quality.

Also the tone of your second post is completely opposite to the first one. You need to make up your mind about the car first.
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Old 28th July 2011, 23:26   #327
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Default Re: Chevrolet Beat TCDI Diesel : Test Drive & Review

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Thats a very un-scientific way of looking at it.
Well Mr. Moderator,

I firmly believe that you must have a very scientific approach about everything. It surprises me that you are drawing such unscientific assumptions about my choices.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mpower View Post
So a ugly boxy car like Logan seems sturdy to you but a funky stylish car like Beat must be fragile? .
Also, how does your scientific approach determine if a car is ugly/ boxy/ funky/ stylish?

Just in case you didn't know, buyers do not follow any scientific algorithms to arrive at a buying decision. In my own unscientific observation I think that Beat is poorly built.

Do you by any chance plan to own a Beat Diesel or better are you endorsing the car?

I made up my mind within the first 2 mins of the test drive (quite unscientifically, but that's how most people make up their mind - within the first minute of experience a product); I would not buy it!

Last edited by ff1609 : 28th July 2011 at 23:32. Reason: Additional Info
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Old 29th July 2011, 12:26   #328
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Default Re: Chevrolet Beat TCDI Diesel : Test Drive & Review

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Well Mr. Moderator,

I firmly believe that you must have a very scientific approach about everything. It surprises me that you are drawing such unscientific assumptions about my choices.


Also, how does your scientific approach determine if a car is ugly/ boxy/ funky/ stylish?

Just in case you didn't know, buyers do not follow any scientific algorithms to arrive at a buying decision. In my own unscientific observation I think that Beat is poorly built.

Do you by any chance plan to own a Beat Diesel or better are you endorsing the car?

I made up my mind within the first 2 mins of the test drive (quite unscientifically, but that's how most people make up their mind - within the first minute of experience a product); I would not buy it!
hat

Great its good to have own opinions and you are right in your own to like or not like the car.

Although in here at T-BHP we generally rely on majority's view. Although the most influential one is the GTO who have driven most of the vehicles obejctively keeping in mind even the smallest aspects, and not just the build quality, so i would rather believe what he says not what you.
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Old 29th July 2011, 13:21   #329
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Default Re: Chevrolet Beat TCDI Diesel : Test Drive & Review

Let me chip in. Just now received info on Beat Diesel prices. The version I am interested, ie, the LT O goes at Rs. 546597 viz the Ritz VDi ABS at Rs. 543708 and Figo Titanium at Rs. 558019. The petrol Beat LT Option is Rs 474351, making the Diesel premium at 72246. Except for the rear wiper and climate control, there is little that the Beat offers more than the Ritz. Still weird, look at the regular LT Diesel: Rs 500546 vs Ritz VDi at 525741 and Figo ZXi at 519577. Sorry to say this and don't slice me to pieces, but I do not feel like paying 5 big ones plus another 50G OTR for that diminutive car.
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Old 29th July 2011, 14:30   #330
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Default Re: Chevrolet Beat TCDI Diesel : Test Drive & Review

Quote:
Originally Posted by anu21v View Post
hat

Great its good to have own opinions and you are right in your own to like or not like the car.

Although in here at T-BHP we generally rely on majority's view. Although the most influential one is the GTO who have driven most of the vehicles obejctively keeping in mind even the smallest aspects, and not just the build quality, so i would rather believe what he says not what you.
No doubt GTO has written a professional like review of the car & I am not here to compete with that. I am not a professional and I do not go & test drive every new car. I did a test drive of this car because I wanted to consider it before deciding which car to buy.

And I as a possible buyer did not like the build quality and that is where it ends. This is my tuppence! I am sure anyone who wants to consider the car will go and check it out for himself instead of making a decision solely on the basis of what t-bhp members say.

The idea behind having an online forum is to let various people share perspectives, if t-bhp wanted only one person's views they'd have used a read-only format.
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