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Old 21st May 2013, 19:07   #61
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Default Liva Sportivo 1.5

I have just booked a white Liva 1.5, turning in my four year old 1.2 petrol i 20. The Liva is meant to be retained for the next ten years.

Sales process with DSK Toyota in Pune was painless, honestly and efficiently executed.

Accessories:

1. Fog lamps to fill up the blanks.
2. Seat covers to allow for easier cleaning after a golden retriever has used her place of choice - the front seat.
3. Armrest - a neat addition to the rear. More comfortable than any built in one, and can be thrown in the boot for the rare occasion when three occupants are at the back. Can also be used in my other car when needed.
4. Rear luggage tray, to keep the boot clean.

I have quality floor mats that I have been transferring across cars for the last ten years.

The one gripe is that mud flaps cannot be installed because of the body kit add ons. I am not a big fan of the kit, but there wasn't any other way to get the 1.5 engine in the Liva.

I could test drive only the Etios petrol that shares the power plant with the Liva, and that seemed fine enough for my needs. I didn't want to carry around an empty boot for the once in a few years need for luggage space, and the Gypsy does fine for airport duty for travellers that cannot travel light, so the Liva seemed to be a better buy for city use and highway trips with one passenger. Rear space is a little less than in the Etios, but good enough.

I will take the delivery late in the week, and will post first impressions then.

Delivery and first impressions:

DSK Toyota proved to be just as efficient, courteous and streamlined for the delivery, including all the puja arrangements - all of it well choreographed.

First impressions of the car enroute to topping up the tank:

1. Easy to drive - I was comfortable in the car just on the short service road before joining the main road.
2. Noticeable improvement in the low end torque, and equally noticeable lack of refinement at higher revs compared to the i20.
3. Decent enough gearbox - not the slickest, but no missing of gears either, all are selected quite effectively.
4. Probably more stable than the 20, although I haven't seen her cross 80 yet.
5. The dead steering is actually better than that in the 20 at city and open road speeds. If it isn't worse than the 20 at higher speeds, I am comfortable with that.
6. There is something rattling in the body in the rear - need to see that in the first service. Nothing serious, but the sound is like something that can be easily fixed. No parcel shelf, so that is not it. Noticeable on concrete roads in Pune which are finished to an abysmal standard.
7. The new ORVMs don't give as wide a view as most do, so that is something to take into account. They aren't bad, but there are better ones out there.

As far as the other potential dislikes, like the low rent interiors etc., they aren't a surprise, so no complaints. Things that are there seem to be well screwed together. And my music from an I touch plays via BT quite well, and the charging point keep the device well fed all the time.

All my cars thus far have carried V Kool, and minus that, the car seems to get hot rapidly. 3M CR90 for the front windshield as a minimum, it can't be seen by any authority, and for the rest I will wait a little to see if the dust settles on the SC thing.

As an aside, the SC ruling actually makes sense. Most OE glass has some reduction in VLT. Assuming that the front has 70%, as many do, installing even something like CR90, that has 90% VLT, will reduce overall VLT to 63%. And will violate the MV Act/rules. So, the SC has logically assumed that any OE glass will comply with the law, and the authorities can't then be bothered to see if additional material on windows installed in the after market, allows for that compliance.

Of course, the Indian problem is enforcement, of which less said the better.

Just a few pictures - I can't really better the ones on the official test drive thread, and my car looks just the same as the one in that.

CR70 installed by 3M on the front glass. CR90 was available at the same price, but 3M suggested that 70 would do a better job in front, and not be noticed. They did remove the little 3M logos that are otherwise a giveaway. They also suggested 90 for the sides, but I will see about that later, much of the Sun's effects are via the front glass. In a hatch, the rear glass is also close to vertical, and not as much a factor as in a sedan.

They tried to sell me paint protection film, but at Rs 6000 a bumper, it seems to me as much as the cost of the new bumper, so I got that for just the ORVMs, for Rs 900 the pair.

The car seemed skittish and bouncy when tyres were inflated to the recommended 32psi all around, so I have taken them down to 29psi front and rear.

OE sound system is average SQ, but the Pioneer made HU is decent. Takes USB and I pods/phones, and mp3, WMA and Apple codecs. Bluetooth audio connections are also good, but connected via the USB port, the device is charged as well, so there isn't anything to be gained by using BT. I haven't tried the phone, but I don't do in car phone calls.

Last edited by Sawyer : 27th May 2013 at 20:36.
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Old 28th May 2013, 13:39   #62
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Default Re: Toyota Liva 1.5L (TRD Sportivo) : Official Review

I found that driving around in summer with plain glass even on the sides is intolerable once one is used to sun film, so I got CR90 all around as well. Invisible film, being almost clear, but as good on UV rejection as any, and decent in keeping the heat at bay.

I also find that the AC isn't as good as that in the Hyundai I cars, so that is something to be checked in the 1000k service along with the few body rattles and a seemingly lose IRVM.

Other than these minor issues, the car behaves well enough. Good in the city, not necessitating downshifting even as much I remember having to do in my Palio 1.6. The center console isn't a big deal and one gets used to it soon. It would have been good to have the warning lights panel in the drivers eye line as the Spark has though, even while the rest of the instrumentation is in the centre.
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Old 30th May 2013, 11:38   #63
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Default Re: Toyota Liva 1.5L (TRD Sportivo) : Official Review

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I also find that the AC isn't as good as that in the Hyundai I cars, so that is something to be checked in the 1000k service along with the few body rattles and a seemingly lose IRVM.
My Liva GD's (diesel) AC performance is no inferior than my past Hyundai Getz's AC. I am not sure if there is a difference in AC performance between Liva diesel and diesel petrol. Anyway, please get it checked.

And congratulations on the mighty hatch.
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Old 30th May 2013, 18:25   #64
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Default Re: Toyota Liva 1.5L (TRD Sportivo) : Official Review

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Anyway, please get it checked.

And congratulations on the mighty hatch.
Thank you, and I will get it checked. Although I suspect the weak AC feeling is more from my inclination to keep the fan speed low for quieter operation, but I shall get it checked in the first service.

And mighty hatch?! I am not so sure - my Palio 1.6 GTX was one, this one seems to be just more drivable in the city with its low end torque, and more practical in use given the quality of Toyota after sales service.

Speaking of which I was pleasantly surprised when I was there to get my loose rear view mirror fixed. No sooner I had walked in to DSK minus any appointment, someone pounced on me to ask me what I wanted and moved things along. One is used to see that approach by the sales guys, nice to see that it prevails in service as well.
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Old 31st May 2013, 09:59   #65
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Default Re: Toyota Liva 1.5L (TRD Sportivo) : Official Review

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Originally Posted by Sawyer View Post
And mighty hatch?! I am not so sure - my Palio 1.6 GTX was one, this one seems to be just more drivable in the city with its low end torque, and more practical in use given the quality of Toyota after sales service.
I see, you are spoiled by GTX . Thats a different territory in terms of power and composure. While buying Getz during 2007, I had a test drive of Palio Stile 1.6 and I was smashed. Did not have the courage to go for it due to after sales issues. Then last year while buying Liva GD, had a test drive of Punto sports. And the same feeling again, as shown in my signature. And, yes the mighty feelings is in terms of low end raw power. How do you find the ride quality of Liva by the way?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sawyer View Post
Speaking of which I was pleasantly surprised when I was there to get my loose rear view mirror fixed. No sooner I had walked in to DSK minus any appointment, someone pounced on me to ask me what I wanted and moved things along. One is used to see that approach by the sales guys, nice to see that it prevails in service as well.
Completely agree, I too have a very positive experience with DSK people.
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Old 31st May 2013, 11:49   #66
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Default Re: Toyota Liva 1.5L (TRD Sportivo) : Official Review

Quote:
Originally Posted by sups View Post
I see, you are spoiled by GTX . Thats a different territory in terms of power and composure. While buying Getz during 2007, I had a test drive of Palio Stile 1.6 and I was smashed. Did not have the courage to go for it due to after sales issues. Then last year while buying Liva GD, had a test drive of Punto sports. And the same feeling again, as shown in my signature. And, yes the mighty feelings is in terms of low end raw power. How do you find the ride quality of Liva by the way?
I bought one of the first Palios in Pune in 2001. That was before the poor service became rampant. In the first few years it ran brilliantly - except that one could almost see the fuel needle move downward while driving! Before I sold it in 2009, I suffered AC failures that were never properly fixed, but other than that the car was in very good shape, zero rattles etc. I did check out the Punto when launched in 2009, but I was put off by poor internal finish and packaging. Even the 2001 Palio was miles ahead in those areas. After seeing the Tata sales approach and the car I was so put off that I wrote here predicting a third failure for Fiat in India, for which, at that time, I was flamed by the many vocal Fiat fans.

Since 2001 I have become older, wiser and pay more attention to after sales and inherently niggle free cars. So, no Fiat, Skoda, VW and their ilk, no matter how brilliant their cars may be. At my age, I need a car to be more like an appliance and less of a passion/hobby.

Liva ride quality is decent enough, better than my outgoing i 20. But the car doesn't feel as "tight" or as composed as the Palio was over potholes, rumblers and speed breakers. Things like the wiper vibrate. But to me that is a small price to pay for cheap and efficient after sales service and long car life. For the price, the car is VFM.

Last edited by Sawyer : 31st May 2013 at 11:51.
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Old 9th June 2013, 21:16   #67
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sawyer View Post
Liva ride quality is decent enough, better than my outgoing i 20. But the car doesn't feel as "tight" or as composed as the Palio was over potholes, rumblers and speed breakers.
Light vs heavy.
Light implies less composed, but more efficient and long lasting parts and hence less running cost
Heavy does the opposite. It's always a compromise.
Japanese/Korean manufacturers take the lighter route while the
European/American manufacturers take the heavier route.

Personally, I'm a fan of light cars especially for the ones priced below 10 lakhs.
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Old 3rd July 2013, 13:17   #68
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Default Re: Toyota Liva 1.5L (TRD Sportivo) : Official Review

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Originally Posted by Sawyer View Post
At my age, I need a car to be more like an appliance and less of a passion/hobby.
So one month of ownership and how does it feel.

What is your real world milage, service experience etc etc?
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Old 3rd July 2013, 21:00   #69
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Default Re: Toyota Liva 1.5L (TRD Sportivo) : Official Review

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So one month of ownership and how does it feel.

What is your real world milage, service experience etc etc?
Haven't done too much running - about 600kms. Other than some miscellaneous rattles, no issues. Car is in for service this week, hopefully some tightening all around will get the panel rattles fixed.

IRVM was loose, DSK stuck it back while ordering a replacement that will be fixed in the service, but the temporary fix has worked too.

Mileage is around 9 at this time, city driving with the AC on. The driver uses it most of the time, I suspect he can upshift earlier than he is used to, but during running in I prefer the treatment he gives to it, rather than risk lugging the engine in a higher gear. A fairer assessment of FE will take a little time.

As I always do with a new car, service will see an oil/filter change, and since subsequent changes are annual, I will ask for Toyota synthetic oil, made for them by Mobil I suspect.

Service appointment is for the 60 minute express service, a neat feature that allows one to save an extra trip to get the car back.

More about service:

The IRVM work was done a month ago, and the replacement one was promised to be ordered and reserved for installation in the first service. Promises are cheap, and it was a pleasant surprise to know that this has actually been done - a pointer to decent process in place.

The service advisor doesn't up sell for filling synthetic oil - indeed he said that mineral is good enough. Regardless of the merits of that advice, the approach is refreshing.

For petrol cars, service is once a year. With three free services, this means that the first time one has to pay for service is when the car is three years old. All that one will spend on in this period is engine oil/filter, once a year. Nice to know.

I suspect that in time, the Etios/Liva cars will do just as well as the Qualis did, after a slow start.

Last edited by Sawyer : 3rd July 2013 at 21:30.
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Old 6th July 2013, 10:31   #70
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Default Re: Toyota Liva 1.5L (TRD Sportivo) : Official Review

The kerb weight of this hatchback is 925 kgs
http://www.toyotabharat.com/cars/new...-trd-spec.aspx

Regular 1.2 Liva's also clock in at J-895 kg/G-915kg/V-930kg.

The kerb weight of the Etios sedan is
J-920 kg/G-935kg/V-945kg
http://www.toyotabharat.com/cars/new...ification.aspx

How come the Liva at 3775 mm length compared to the sedan's 4265 mm i.e. almost half a meter less, weigh almost the same?

Last edited by bblost : 6th July 2013 at 10:33.
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Old 6th July 2013, 10:41   #71
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Default Re: Toyota Liva 1.5L (TRD Sportivo) : Official Review

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How come the Liva at 3775 mm length compared to the sedan's 4265 mm i.e. almost half a meter less, weigh almost the same?
I mentioned that in my review as well. It's nothing to do with the length but the structural rigidity. The hatch has additional reinforcements because it is missing the structural panel behind the rear seats. This is why the weights are identical.

The difference between the Etios V and Liva TRD is around 15Kilos.
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Old 6th July 2013, 10:48   #72
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How come the Liva at 3775 mm length compared to the sedan's 4265 mm i.e. almost half a meter less, weigh almost the same?
The body kit bits also chip in with some weight.
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Old 4th August 2013, 10:33   #73
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Default Re: Toyota Liva 1.5L (TRD Sportivo) : Official Review

Just an update, to share the excellent experience of after sales with DSK Pune. The car went for first service. When the car came back, I realised that the DSK Toyota letters had been stuck on the rear - at the time I bought it, I had expressly stated I did not want them, and they weren't added.
I wrote an email to the head of service, and he replied in 24 hours apologising and offering to send someone home to remove them. I wrote back saying that since I would visiting them for my routine 1000km engine oil/filter change, this could wait till then.
When I went for this work, I was given express service, personal attention on a busy afternoon, and all work done to my satisfaction. Till now, I have also interacted with three SAs, and the treatment from each has been uniformly excellent. This is my first transaction with Toyota, and I don't "know" anyone there or in DSK. DSK is clearly following Toyota processes and philosophy faithfully, and it shows.
No trouble with the car either, and while the interiors are much improved, they aren't best in class by some way. But I knew that before buying the car, and they are good enough for my tastes. I wanted a car that will give me trouble free performance for the next ten years, and I have found nothing that gives me reason to doubt the decision I made. The FE seems to be settling down around the 10-11km per litre mark, city use, AC on all the time.
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Old 4th August 2013, 12:46   #74
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I wanted a car that will give me trouble free performance for the next ten years, and I have found nothing that gives me reason to doubt the decision I made. The FE seems to be settling down around the 10-11km per litre mark, city use, AC on all the time.
+1. It does seem to be a true 10+ years car. I'm @ Makkah now performing my pilgrimage. Here, the boring Toyota designs dominate the funky and modern designs of Hyundai/ford/suzuki. Ask anyone here about the reason and you get a straight answer - T means reliability, practicality and cheap cost of maintenance. Function over form design concept. There's no brand which beats that as of now.
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Old 4th August 2013, 14:27   #75
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Default Re: Toyota Liva 1.5L (TRD Sportivo) : Official Review

On reflection, I haven't given DSK enough credit, so here is a write up that will be interesting.

Here is how a customer experiences service from DSK Toyota. I was there yesterday for an engine oil change, so it is fresh in my mind. I can't say for sure, but it may be world class. Certainly far better than any I have seen from Maruti or Hyundai. And they are managing volumes too, the service side was humming yesterday. I also suspect that not all Toyota dealers are this good!
Sequence of events:
1. I reach the dealership and I am directed to park the car at a service bay for incoming cars. At the gate, once it is known that I am there for service, I get a small tag with the car number written on it.
2. I walk in through the doors, and there is a person standing there as if he is waiting for me, who pounces on me in the manner of car salesmen, who takes my tag, looks up my appointment on a computer, and directs me to one of a bank of service advisors sitting with PC access.
3. The SA takes my car number, and I suspect the car service history shows up. I am asked what is the nature of service, he enters instructions, and this action also creates stores releases for materials to the extent foreseeable. I sign the print outs, and I am directed to the customer lounge to wait, if a case of express service. The action also triggers a sms to me giving car number, SA name/contact details, and expected time of delivery. The lounge has free coffee via a machine, TV and internet. And a huge glass window looking on to the service bays, where one can see the car undergoing service. A plasma display panel that keeps refreshing, to show an updated status of all the cars under service at the time. And the lounge is cleaner than some doctor waiting rooms.
4. When the car is ready, I get another sms. I go to the same SA, who explains the work done, charges etc, and once I agree, closes out the job. He prints the invoice, takes my signature, goes to a box of tokens, gives it to me, and gives the token to the cashier, and goes back to handle other customers. Before he does this, he highlights to me the names/numbers of DSK executives to call in case of complaints.
5. In a queue, token numbers light up on the cashier booth. When mine does, I go up and pay, collect the invoice and the gate pass.
6. I walk out, the car is in the delivery area, I step in, surrender the gate pass and drive out.

Impressed? I am, thoroughly.

So slick. Making all this happen is an IT backbone, leveraged by trained people with the right attitudes, following good processes.

For normal service, all of the above gets done in 75 minutes.

Of course this is for straightforward work. For problems, there is a test drive to understand the problem etc. But all via a clockwork process. And the delivery time will extend out more than 75 minutes, according to the nature of the problem.

Also, interesting - the car is washed twice. A thorough wash first, before it goes for service, so the techs get a clean car and clean mechanicals to work on. Looking down on to the bays, equally impressive is how the tools, compressed air lines etc are set up to make them easy to reach and use by the service techs.

And then, just before delivery, a body wash, interior clean and quality check, so you get a car which looks as close to new as it is capable of looking.

This kind of operation ought to be the benchmark for service anywhere in the world. And I have seen it at work in Pune, India just yesterday, for the third time since I bought the car. The first was for a minor defect - it was dealt with so well that I was more impressed with that, than disappointed with the defect. The second visit for the first free service. I have interacted with three different SAs, and the experience has been equally excellent with all three.

For other members, a question - are other Toyota dealers in India this classy? I don't even have to ask this of about any other auto maker, I know the answer.

Knowing the world of manufacturing and sustainable improvements well, I know the immense effort that must have gone into this operation. I still can't get over it:-).

Last edited by Sawyer : 4th August 2013 at 14:31.
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