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Old 8th December 2009, 09:41   #76
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Originally Posted by GTO View Post
• Top-end variant does not have keyless entry. What makes it worse is that you cannot lock the front doors without the key in hand (unlike, say a Maruti). A workaround is to open the rear door, lock the front door and then lock the rear door shut.
IMO. the worse part is good. at least this way no one will be able to lock the keys inside, which can be really troublesome if you are not travelling with spare keys, or that the spare keys also got locked inside.

recently i spotted an 800 cc spark, it had changed design on the rear lights, non body coloured bumpers, expect a real drop in price on the spark when the beat gets launched.

@GTO.
i was standing near the gate of GM's office when you guys drove out in the afternoon in a caravan of 7-8 cars, the moment you left an executive from GM (with a muffler around his neck) came running out to summon an ambulance which was parked 400 meters away from the office. Did they provide you guys with ambulance, in anticipation that something might go wrong?

Last edited by pb10gagan : 8th December 2009 at 09:52.
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Old 8th December 2009, 10:05   #77
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Originally Posted by AdrenalinJunkie View Post
I think Chevrolet have been exceptionally smart with this car. The clear targeted audience is the youth, what with its funky unique look and space age dashboard. Make no mistake about it, this car is meant only for the youth and no one else.
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Originally Posted by Zensi View Post
Couple of things immediately spring to mind - GM is definitely after the younger crowd and even the fairer sex - who play an important part in influencing the decision, the interior with the cool blue back lit, the chunky steering wheel and digi meters look super.
I do agree, its an urban car. Will appeal to the "yuppies".

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but i think their main target is the Swift which is undoubtedly is the segment leader hands down.
The Swift was so unique when released that it immediately captured young hearts and the rest as they say - is history.
One of the biggest differentiators of the Swift were / are its cute looks. As of today, I do think the Ritz is superior as a package to the Swift. But how much does the Swifts design (and the Ritz rear end) have to do with the formers success? The Swift outsells the Ritz 2:1 despite being a far older product. While the Beat wears futuristic clothes, I don't think it has the mass appeal of the Swift.

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Originally Posted by needforspeed88 View Post
I have rated this thread five stars.
Thanks for the rating, needforspeed. I'm glad this review was helpful to you.

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Originally Posted by veyron_head View Post
I am seeing a hatch that is not 'butt-ugly' after a long time.
So true. The rear is clean, well proportioned and I like the after-market looking light arrangement. Puny tyres spoil an otherwise smart profile.

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@GTO: Do they have plans for a LPG on this one, like spark?
I'm pretty sure GM will offer a Beat LPG sooner rather than later.

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Originally Posted by lsp View Post
With the non stereotypical looks the car might find it difficult to sell in semi-urban and rural areas. I don't know how is Spark's penetration in this market.
Very good point, lsp. Acceptance within the conservative, and rural / semi-urban belts will be a challenge for the unconventional design of this car.

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The gear knob looks a bit odd - how was the gearshift quality and throw like?
As mentioned in the review, gearshift quality is rubbery (typical Korean box). Gates are well defined and you will find the right gear easily.

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Originally Posted by Sawyer View Post
From a 3495 by 1495 footprint for the Spark, the Beat has grown to 3640 by 1595. That is my gripe about the way car models seem to bloat in size in succeeding generations.
Sawyer, cars are getting bigger not only in line with customer preferences, but also in meeting safety standards, accomodating larger engines, thicker sheet metal and carrying more equipment. Plus, a longer wheelbase / wider foot print has inherent advantages to improving ride & handling.

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In a couple of months, I see the Beat getting lost in the small car noise with all the new models about to arrive.
If you ask me, the diesel engine will ensure a long life for the Beat. Again, the key is differentiation. Chevy must use differentiating factors to the fullest advantage:

- Looks
- Compliant ride
- FE petrol
- Diesel
- LPG variant
- 3 year service packages
- Auto transmission
- VFM price

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Originally Posted by MCR View Post
By the way were you with him during the test drives? I saw that NDTV also showed these two cars(Blue and red).
Yup, we were part of the same press group.

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Originally Posted by sharma_sanjeevi View Post
The Power Window Switch for the rear window seems to be at the right place to me, any specific observation, are they fiddly to use ?
I'm glad you brought this up. See, the power window switch is just an inch or two ahead of where your elbow is positioned (when you are sitting on the back seat). Thus, to operate, you have to entirely bend your arm to access the switch.

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Originally Posted by pb10gagan View Post
i was standing near the gate of GM's office when you guys drove out in the afternoon in a caravan of 7-8 cars, the moment you left an executive from GM (with a muffler around his neck) came running out to summon an ambulance which was parked 400 meters away from the office. Did they provide you guys with ambulance, in anticipation that something might go wrong?
All press drive events are supported by an emergency response team. This includes medical support, mechanics, spare parts etc.

Last edited by GTO : 8th December 2009 at 10:25.
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Old 8th December 2009, 10:16   #78
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[quote=GTO;1621911]

[quote=Sawyer;1621765]From a 3495 by 1495 footprint for the Spark, the Beat has grown to 3640 by 1595. That is my gripe about the way car models seem to bloat in size in succeeding generations.
Quote:

Sawyer, cars are getting bigger not only in line with customer preferences, but also in meeting safety standards, accomodating larger engines, thicker sheet metal and carrying more equipment.


I am not sure I agree that bloat is justified for those reasons. If my memory serves me well, the A Star, that is a new car, has the same footprint as the Spark, but suffers in comparison with it for the internal packaging. With cities getting more congested, bloat is something to think about. After all, the next model in the line up is available for some one that needs the larger footprint. Of course in India GM will say that it is keeping the Spark alive in the line up, but that may not have the current 4 pot engine that allows the current Spark to be as refined as it is.
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Old 8th December 2009, 10:25   #79
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I dont understand this new funda of car makers with regards to music systems. Why do they give us these low quality audio systems ? And also the ones which are non upgradable.

And the worse thing is if one changes the system (audio), the guarantee/ warantee for all the electronics gets null and void, as one has 'tampered' with the electronics.

I mean, the 1st thing i would like in my car is a good sounding audio system.

Either give us an optional upgrade to the music system, or give us an option to not buy the music system.

cheers,
ac
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Old 8th December 2009, 10:53   #80
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Chevy has made a bold move. The large hatch segment sure loves styling, but it is also a VFM market where people will be looking at "space" and comfort.
though legroom is decent, the narrow rear bench may put off some people.
Its a gamble, which can go either ways.
Either the beat can establish itself as a breath of fresh air in a sea of conformist hatches, or the idea may completely bomb.
Indian market is very unpredictable, and only time will tell how it fares!
BTW, I also confused the beat for a 2 door hatch, and I was wondering, is chevy planning suicide in small car segment.
They sure fooled a lot of people, including me!
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Old 8th December 2009, 10:53   #81
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Thank you GTO for the review. Liked it's crispness and the point about product differentiation.

On a very personal note, let me add that I am not terribly impressed by the car. No doubt, it has adventurous styling but I can't see anything else going for it. I will also say that the styling might be considered over-the-top by some people. I agree with the posts earlier saying that the car is targetted at the "young" buyer and it might just succeed. Here's my version of who might make up a majority of Beat buyers:

a. Young professionals who are single and not getting married in the immediate future. Raison-d-etre: Ridiculously small boot (A* esque). Not enough room in the backseat (max. two people and not generous legroom) and backseat passenger's being made to lean forward to fully grasp the fact that there are windows in a thing called the automobile.

N.B. The engine, gearbox and dynamics are strictly average, hence the performance seeking hot blooded male is not the target.

b. A second car for people with Corollas. Make no mistake, I love the Corolla but I wish they were more adventurous with the styling. Anyway, having the Beat as a second car would make people look at you quizzically and remark, "There's more to this guy than we thought".

N.B. Replace the Corolla with some other sedan (>10 lakhs for a high score in the "doing-well-in-life" index) and this still holds.

c. Women who like the styling enough to ignore the lack of a vanity mirror on the sun-visor might buy it. After I wrote that, I thought that the mirror might be behind the card/toll ticket holder and that it might be a bother. I like the Indica Vista's glovebox, it has the same feature and the Vista has the vanity mirror on the sun-visor.

N.B. Independent women might take to this car, however the Spark might look cuter to them. Not sure about this though.

d. Provided the pricing is spot on, the beat should compete with some versions of the A*. In that case, unless the buyer is concerned about A.S.S. the Beat has the A* beat. So the potential A* buyer is a target.
The Ritz and Swift aren't in the crosswire, I never thought I'd say this, but the Swift is more practical than this car (Ritz even more so) and the looks have been well accepted.
OT: In the side profile picture, the rear end looks quite like the Ritz's; in fact without the spoiler (imagine) the basic shape is very similar.

Please feel free to add/delete/refute any point listed above, this is purely my opinion (absolutely the minority too ).

P.S. In case you really want to know why I assume to be in the minority, just go to your nearest Fiat dealer and look at the Punto. Look at the bare bones, Active 1.2 version. If you see art, you are with me.

Last edited by Amartya : 8th December 2009 at 10:56. Reason: corrected some grammatical errors
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Old 8th December 2009, 10:54   #82
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The design is fresh, and is clearly positioned to catch the youth. Non upgradable HU is a turn off. Does all the varients come with integrated HU?

Hope Airbags and ABS are a part of the option pack for non top end models too.
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Old 8th December 2009, 11:06   #83
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Excellent reivew, typical GTO style. Making benchmarks in the standards of Automotive reporting.

I was always worried on the view from rear view seats, thanks to space taken by door handles, and thanks for providing that view. Car looks neat, nice interiors, imposing grille.

I am amazed at the cc level 1199 (just 1 short of 1200).
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Old 8th December 2009, 11:27   #84
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Thanks @ GTO for a very comprehensive test report. Just one question. With this funky looking car which will probably be aimed at the younger crowd buying their first cars , will this be able to give the existing "Tall" boys from Suzuki and hyundai a run for their money ? What will be the price range ? (Should be a tad cheaper in Pune as it will be made in Pune )
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Old 8th December 2009, 12:00   #85
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sawyer View Post
I am not sure I agree that bloat is justified for those reasons.
Well, if you consider that this is actually a new generation Spark (and a replacement for our Spark), it is a step ahead of the older car. The rear seat has more legroom, ride quality is better and the car is overall much safer. The 10+ year Spark platform will not meet the safety standards of today. The Beat managed 4 out of 5 stars in the NCAP.

Quote:
If my memory serves me well, the A Star, that is a new car, has the same footprint as the Spark, but suffers in comparison with it for the internal packaging.
So true. The A Star is a poorly packaged car. No rear space and a tiny boot.

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Originally Posted by ac 427 View Post
And the worse thing is if one changes the system (audio), the guarantee/ warantee for all the electronics gets null and void, as one has 'tampered' with the electronics.
If you change only the speakers, and retain the original wiring, sound quality will substantially improve. Plus, the warranty stays intact too (no cutting of wires).

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Originally Posted by theexperthand View Post
Does all the varients come with integrated HU?
Atleast the mid-range and top-variants of the Beat have integrated HUs.

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Originally Posted by tanwaramit View Post
I am amazed at the cc level 1199 (just 1 short of 1200).
You can say that again. Stretched it to the limit!

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Originally Posted by ambivalent_98 View Post
What will be the price range ? (Should be a tad cheaper in Pune as it will be made in Pune )
We'll know on the 4th of January!
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Old 8th December 2009, 12:27   #86
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Only time will tell whether Beat gives I-10, Ritz or Swift a beating. But with Beat is there any incentive left to go for A-Star ? I think Beat is miles and leagues ahead of A-Star in terms of styling - both interior and exterior, engine is decent and refined enough for low and mid range(which is where these cars will be operating in 95% of the time), bigger boot, bigger rear leg space, appears to be better build quality, dashboards don't even need comparisons(waste of time !!), much funkier as well.
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Old 8th December 2009, 12:38   #87
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GTO, any idea what are the colours they have on offer?

I see red and blue, what else is there?
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Old 8th December 2009, 12:49   #88
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Great review. A very refreshing design compared to the bland stuff we get. Those wheels look terribly small though. I like that fact that these days even the interiors in hatchbacks have a great look and feel to it.
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Old 8th December 2009, 13:02   #89
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Originally Posted by taurian2804 View Post
Only time will tell whether Beat gives I-10, Ritz or Swift a beating. But with Beat is there any incentive left to go for A-Star ?
I can tell you this : In the 4 - 6 lakh hatch segment, we've had the i20, Ritz, Punto and the Beat launched within a span of months. Plus, the VW Polo and the Ford Figo are just around the corner. The time for lackslustre or flawed products is over. With such a vast choice, only the better products will survive.

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Originally Posted by vid6639 View Post
GTO, any idea what are the colours they have on offer?

I see red and blue, what else is there?
Thanks to Sidindica for this information:

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Olympic white
misty lake blue
carbon flash black
leaf green
poly silver
sunset orange
red
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Originally Posted by Stratos View Post
Those wheels look terribly small though.
I'm okay with the wheels (though would prefer a 15 inch size). What really sucks is the 155 mm tyre width. Even Hyundai is no different. The top-end i10 is sold with 155mm tyres on 13 inch wheels! Maruti offers decent rubber on the Ritz / Swift ZXi. Full marks to Fiat for the 195mm Punto tyres too.

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I like that fact that these days even the interiors in hatchbacks have a great look and feel to it.
I agree. Hyundai was the first to realise the importance of interior quality.
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Old 8th December 2009, 13:06   #90
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Ok,how many here watched Chevy Beat review in "The Car & Bike show" last weekend and noticed GTO sitting on the rear seat looking a bit bored - maybe due to the ramblings of the NDTV anchor or not being behind the steering wheel or a combination of both :-)
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