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Old 27th September 2011, 15:00   #61
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Default re: Maruti Swift : Test Drive & Review

Originally Posted by Jaggu View Post

ps: Small correction to point out, swift d's always had plastic tanks and is not a new addition. Also the brake assist they refer to is ABS i guess.
Thanks for the information about plastic tank. I am using Swift VDI for the past 3 years. Never knew it had a plastic tank.

However I do not think break assist is same as ABS. If you look at their site, it clearly mentions Break Assist separately from New gen. ABS with EBD. The following Spec screen shows that.

Maruti Swift : Test Drive & Review-swift-spec.jpg
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Old 27th September 2011, 15:12   #62
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Default re: Maruti Swift : Test Drive & Review

Excellent review GTO, was waiting for it and wondering why there was no review till now. With the Jazz now in a similar buying range, why didnt you include that as a part of the New Swift's competition. I would be more interested in a head on between the two. How about you giving us that as well.
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Old 27th September 2011, 15:13   #63
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Default re: Maruti Swift : Test Drive & Review

  • It is priced a bit higher than the current versions. Sure the ZDi is attractive but for such a price tag it does not provide value. Figo is a way better deal.
  • The ride has always been the Achilees Heel in the prevoius version. Good to know it is now sorted.
  • None of the engine s are as good as the previous ones. Why Maruti why? Does that also mean resale value of prevoius gen will shoot up?
  • V should atleast have a ICE for god's sake.
  • It is as tall as a tallboy. How can the handling be awesome?
  • Interiors look good. But quality od plasics in many areas still look dismal.
  • Increasing the bottom end in the petrol should not be an issue. (Disconnect the VVT & set the timing according to non VVT & you are good to go.) Or else a simple remap should be enough.
  • Or a powerbox for the diesel.
Originally Posted by GTO View Post
Handling : Swift
Stability : Punto
Ride quality : Punto
Steering : Punto
Gearshift : Swift
Driveability / city use : Swift
Space (and boot) : Punto
Now this is interesting stuff. Can we have some more of these specially with Figo, Polo & Liva. I know it is too much to ask.
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Old 27th September 2011, 15:24   #64
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Default re: Maruti Swift : Test Drive & Review

From Brake Assist - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia :

Brake Assist (BA or BAS) is a generic term for an automobile braking technology that increases braking pressure in an emergency situation. The first application was developed jointly by Daimler-Benz and TRW/LucasVarity. Research conducted in 1992 at the Mercedes-Benz driving simulator in Berlin revealed that more than 90% of drivers fail to brake with enough force in emergency situations.

Seems to be a new feature in this segment ?

Last edited by sdp1975 : 27th September 2011 at 15:26.
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Old 27th September 2011, 15:24   #65
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Default re: Maruti Swift : Test Drive & Review

Originally Posted by GTO View Post
Beige would greatly make the cabin feel bright & airy.
I love the black interiors. Looks much better with the ICE and ACC in the Z variants.

However, I would have loved if the seats were some other colour other than black. Good quality leather seats can totally transform the new swift interiors.
Originally Posted by GTO View Post
Shockingly, the “shin” area of my leg kept hitting against the plastic panel right above the clutch, when fully pressing the clutch pedal. To the point where it started hurting after 60 minutes of driving & constantly changing gears.

Note that this is down to the driving position, and friendly Moderator Stratos didn’t face the same issue. On the other hand, in his driving position, his left knee kept hitting against the waterfall console in an annoying manner. If you are anything over 5’8” in height, you can bet that you will face either of the two problems mentioned here.
I'm almost 6' and didnt notice either of these problems during the test drive. Need to drive the car once more. Worried since I'm one of those 1L + customers waiting for their lucky day.
Originally Posted by GTO View Post
I don't understand why a 60:40 splitting rear seat is missing, especially when the cheaper Ritz & WagonR (all variants) get this feature.
You might want to take a second look at this. Noticed it in your pic. I feel its been designed for 60:40 split, but some marketing head at Maruti would be saving it for the next refresh model.

Can anyone with the new swift check the same?
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Originally Posted by GTO View Post
The elusive ZDi variant is finally offered on the new Swift. I think, for the additional equipment you get (namely BETTER brakes, ABS with EBD, Driver / Passenger Airbags, Audio with Radio / CD Player, Aux / USB inputs, 6 Speakers, Rear wash & wipe, Driver seat height adjustment, Climate control and 185/65 tyres on 15" alloy wheels), the ZDi is completely worth the difference over the VDi. However, thanks to the VDi’s higher range pricing, the ZDi when viewed in isolation does come across as pricey (most BHPians seem to agree on the launch thread). If you live down South, the on-road price will cross Rs. 7.5 lakhs. That's quite a lot of money for a budget Maruti hatchback. It’s not going to have too many takers at this price point and, if you are absolutely keen on safety features, the Figo Titanium looks like super value for money. Also, I noticed that many BHPians who were considering the ZDi inevitably brought the i20 CRDi into the picture. The new Swift is between 18 - 35K more expensive, variant to variant, depending on where you live. The Ritz now becomes Maruti's entry-point car in the A2 premium segment, while the Swift's "Z" variants move up against the Polo, i20 and gang.
It costs 7L in Trivandrum. That is serious amount of money for a hatchback, no doubt. However, from my search- i could find only two diesel cars that really excited me in the price range- The new Swift and the FIAT Punto. (And the used Civic which will remain a dream because already i have stretched the budget so much, I cant buy a petrol car. )

Swift now offers a superb fight to the Punto as a competent car, and one does not have to compromise various factors to own that car as well. Plus, the short turning radius turned out to be a huge plus - unbelievably, bein able to take an L-turn into our house with the same effort as it takes in the old WagonR. (Whereas Punto will need to be reversed from the main road along a street that has almost 8 big properties, and two 90 degree turns).Thats why Swift was finalised. In the forum, i see more bookings for ZDi than for VDi.
Originally Posted by geeash View Post
Another thing is that most of the dealers in chennai dont even have a registed car for TD. So no one except khivraj ( thanks to mutantx) gives one.
This was the state till last week. However, Popular Motors - Chennai has been calling me for test drive for over a week now. I would be going on thursday for back to back drive of Swift and Punto 90HP.
Originally Posted by speedsatya View Post
For enthusiasts like us ,we would want the car to give that confidence when cornering .And this Swift with skinny 165 tires just doesnt do that ! and add to that the poor brakes.Why the heck would anyone spend 7.7L ( Bangalore) on a Suzuki small car that has a boot just larger than a I10,has pathetic brakes ,scary rubber ( which means I would have to spend another 15 K on a new set of rubber ).....
7.7L is OTR bangalore, i guess for ZDi version.

It gets decent 185 section MRF ZVTS, good brakes with ABS. And as GTO has put it - the handling is anything but scary. He has even rated it ahead of segment-best Punto. (However, boot space is a concern and yes, lesser variants are not meant for enthusiats without a tyre upgrade).
Originally Posted by moralfibre View Post
Actually Satya, the Z variant fixes your concerns at 7.7L. It comes with decent 185 section rubber and has better brakes. BUT, at 7.7 L, I wouldn't really buy a Swift.
As an enthusiast yourself, which other diesel car would you buy at of Swift ZDi? From my car hunt - it finally came down to only two cars- Punto and Swift.

[b]Another point- Bangalore prices are always shocking to hear. I believe i20 asta with AVN crosses 9.5L in bangalore? Most people in other states could get a heart attack hearing Rs 9.5L price tag for a hatch.

Last edited by CrAzY dRiVeR : 27th September 2011 at 15:32.
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Old 27th September 2011, 15:26   #66
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Nice review deserving 5 stars.
The drawbacks of the car like rear legroom, tiny windows, hatch opener, etc will help reduce the 1L backlog. MSIL R&D had all the time in the world to fix these, but looks like they are over-confidant. The hatchback segment is very competitive now and today's Brio pricing will wean away good number if petrol customers.
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Old 27th September 2011, 15:28   #67
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Default re: Maruti Swift : Test Drive & Review

Excellent review as always but I dont agree when you say that Swift handling is better than Punto. Yes it more agile but agile doesn't mean better handling. On roads infested with potholes there are only few cars in the class which do better than a Punto. I test drove the ZDi variant sometime back and had shared my review on the forum.

I must mention that weak brakes in this day and age are inexcusable. The plastic quality is also a downer although the fit and finish is good. The test car I drove had 900 odd kilometers on the odometer and I could hear a few rattles. I am willing to bet that new Swift will also start rattling very soon and will only be slightly better than the old Swift, if at all its better.

Sharing my review again for the benefit of others

Drove the new Swift today and I am a bit underwhelmed especially given the hype around this car.

Whats good
1. The engine pulls hard once turbo comes in.
2. The interiors are nice to look at.
3. One of the better sounding factory stereo, not the best.
4. Driving position is better than the old Swift.
5. Better feedback and response from the steering. One of the better EPS around.
6. Braking is good.
7. The alloys look nice in person.

Whats not
1. A low frequency sound fills the cabin which will make you go mad even if you are slightly lugging the engine. Shift down and its fine.
2. The suspension is better than old Swift but then its not saying much. It still crashes badly through potholes. The chassis doesn't feel solid enough. The much maligned i20 feels much better as far as chassis stiffness is concerned.
3. Very small boot which is unforgivable for a premium hatch given that this will be the only car for some families.
4. The build quality is still some way of the competition. The Europeans are in a different league altogether.
5. The plastic are still average. Even though they fit well, the plastic themselves are brittle.
6. The ZDi i drive had 900 odd kms on the odo and I could hear a rattle or two. I can bet that this would start rattling in a years time and would only fare slightly better than the old model.
7. No engine start stop button, no bluetooth.
8. Expensive @ Rs 7.14 Lakhs on road Delhi.

All said, the car appeals to the heart. It has a definite character and is very enjoyable to drive.

Competition dissected

Fiat Punto
Where it scores.
1. Looks better in my opinion
2. Build quality, ride and handling is way ahead.
3. More equipment
4. Better brakes.
5. Bigger boot.

Where it doesn't
1. Performance is not as good as Swift
2. Gearshift not as good as Swift.
3. Shitty sounding factory stereo.
4. After sales network not as wide.

Hyundai i20

Where it scores
1. Build and plastic quality is way ahead.
2. Feels better going through potholes.
3. Equipment list leaves Swift feeling hollow.
4. More powerful engine.

Where it doesn't
1. Possibly the most un-involving hatch to drive. The most commuterish of all.
2. Weak A/C
3. The worst steering in a hatch.

Nissan Micra

Where it scores
1. Interiors quality and equipment
2. At 6.5 lakhs after discounts for the XV Premium, its a real value for money.
3. Better mileage?
4. No turbo lag. Mid range is explosive.
5. Bigger boot.

Where it doesn't
1. Steering is dead.
2. Quirky styling. Too feminine
3. Not as involving to drive.
4. No ABS! What were Nissan thinking!

Ford Figo

Where it scores
1. Interiors and boot space.
2. Better build.
3. The most VFM hatch around.
4. Better ride and handling.
5. Drive-ability within the city.
6. Bigger boot.

Where it doesn't
1. Looks are strictly average.
2. Engine top end isn't as good.
3. Not as refined or silent.
4. Slightly notchy gearshift
5. Braking not as good.
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Old 27th September 2011, 15:30   #68
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Default re: Maruti Swift : Test Drive & Review

GTO, as somebody who has test driven both the Jazz & the Swift, which is a better car? Top end Zxi is priced close to base Honda Jazz.

I remember reading the review of new Swift in Autocar UK magazine, and that Swift definitely had a dead pedal. I guess the Maruti engineers couldn't figure out what the piece of plastic next to the clutch was doing in the footwell and got rid of it.

Also, lots of cars these days seem to have badly designed centre consoles ergonomically speaking. My leg brushes against the centre console in Vista & Cruze. My brother's leg was brushing against Polo's centre console. You & stratos seem to be having trouble with the Swift's centre console.
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Old 27th September 2011, 15:34   #69
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Default re: Maruti Swift : Test Drive & Review

Brilliant! Brilliantly composed review! kudos to you for that! And a hearty thanks to the BHPians who lent the their cars fro the test drive!

Rated a well deserved 5 star!

The interior definitely looks more upmarket to compared to the present one. Also, agree on the pricing factor. Expect a lot of cross shopping.
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Old 27th September 2011, 15:50   #70
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Default re: Maruti Swift : Test Drive & Review

Thanks GTO for the review. Though its late, as you said - it still helps ! I own the old gen Swift & was thinking whether it really makes sense to upgrade to new gen. I guess the answer is NO ! The problems I found with the old gen is rattles & poor quality plastics mainly & doesn't look to me that this is solved [I know its too early to predict / guess, still]. And a noisier cabin is something which I hate too [I am slightly annoyed with the current noise levels itself, but my sound system makes up for it].
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Old 27th September 2011, 16:05   #71
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Default re: Maruti Swift : Test Drive & Review

Thanks for a wonderful review.

New swift has got more practical in some departments and less in some. Major pluses and minuses to me are:

+ Improved ride quality with quite an acceptable sacrifice on handling front (A big plus)
+ Rear cabin space
+ Less turbo lag & gradual delivery - Improved diesel driveability

- Further reduced boot space, and no 60:40 foldable seat split either (This is a true shocker)
- Enhanced feel of claustrophobia
- Poor sould insulation inside cabin
- Weak low-end in petrol engine
- Missing ABS even as option on mid-variant

With the changes, Brio should emerge as the new Petrol Hatch Queenie among the enthusiants. Liva is there for practicality-oriented. So is Jazz for an upmarket aspirant. Figo is an incredible VFM. Vista for all the space and comfort. i10 has huge following in petrol, and rightly so for urban driveability. i20 keeps doing some great numbers on its interiors. Where does that leave the new Swift? It does not quite emerge as a true all-rounder also, mainly because of the major drawback of impaired boot space.

I find it amazing to see the rush for the new relatively impractical Swift with all the competition it's now got as against the previous gen Swift that was path-breaking in many ways on its launch. The new product does not appear to have any real USP. The present rush seems to be significanly riding on the cult status of the outgoing Swift. Gradually the real new Swift will be revealed to the people and then the true market response will be known.

I am also surprised, for a hatch that has done its fair run in the European market, about the following

Gives head-banging an all new meaning! Ingress / egress is pathetic, and you will frequently bang your head when getting into the car
An ergonomic failure. The shin area of my leg kept hitting against the plastic panel on top of the clutch pedal. It actually got painful after a couple of kms. While Stratos didn't face the previous issue, his left knee kept hitting against the waterfall console. Terribly annoying!...If you are anything over 5’8” in height, you can bet that you will face either of the two problems mentioned here
But this one is typical of a European launch!
...prioritise form over function

@GTO, I would have liked to see the Liva in the comparison charts. I know you cannot have all the cars. But Liva, IMO, promises to be a major player with the launch of its Diesel. It's also in the similar price bracket, has similar dimensions, Japanese lineage and boasts quality A.S.S.

Would also suggest to add a line or two on the diesel engine of Liva in the "Chief Competitors..." category.

Last edited by RadiantKarma : 27th September 2011 at 16:07.
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Old 27th September 2011, 16:16   #72
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Default re: Maruti Swift : Test Drive & Review

The Swift is a rare mass market car that is also fun to drive, a hatchback that appeals to the gearhead as well as the common Anand.
Is it me?
Anyways thanks GTO for that mention. If mods permit I would like to put letters on this link that I sent (and actually fought) with maruti regarding the issues we faced in swift - like 15 of the major ones. Though the 2009 models did came with better quality, its the new swift that in cooperates and eclipses all the drawbacks of old gem. I am sure many people like me would have wrote similar letters to maruti and they finally listened, but too late though as I already got the old gem -the one that fulfills all my expectations from a hatchback.
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Old 27th September 2011, 16:21   #73
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Default re: Maruti Swift : Test Drive & Review

Originally Posted by GTO View Post
Apologies for being late, but this was the earliest we could possibly manage. Plus, look at it this way : Our reviews aren't useful only at the time of launch. A car typically has a shelf life of 6 - 7 years in India. Thus, though a month late, it's going to be useful for the next 71 months
Definitely the official reviews are welcome anytime. In fact, reviews of older launches still going strong in the market will be a massive help for prospective buyers.
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Old 27th September 2011, 16:40   #74
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Default re: Maruti Swift : Test Drive & Review

Superb effort by MSIL. The old Swift already had many things right, this one only gets better. The quality of interiors seems to be vastly improved, but can be said only 6 months down the line when actual owners report rattling/non rattling. I can see another winner for Maruti; this hatch pulls all the strings to your heart, plus at the same time agrees with your head too! And another great review by t-bhp!!
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Old 27th September 2011, 16:54   #75
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Default re: Maruti Swift : Test Drive & Review

Thanks for the great review!!

My first take on the rear door was that it looks completely out of sync if you are comparing against the previous version. But it grows on you and you will start liking it.

Again the rear lamp design is too good. You can't see that/make out in any of the pictures but when seen in flesh, you'll love it.

Not sure if I can integrate the new rear lamp design in the older version.

Anyone who has given a thought to it?

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