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Old 13th March 2011, 19:56   #1
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Question Toyota Etios or Tata Manza?

To be, or not to be: that is the question:
Whether 'tis nobler in the mind to suffer
The slings and arrows of outrageous fortune,
Or to take arms against a sea of troubles,
And by opposing end them? To die: to sleep;

To sleep: perchance to dream: ay, there's the rub;
For in that sleep of death what dreams may come
When we have shuffled off this mortal coil,
Must give us pause: there's the respect
That makes calamity of so long life;
- Shakespeare, circa 1600


*** *** *** *** *** ***

Manza Elan or Etios V: that is the question:
Whether 'tis wiser for a consumer, to suffer
The slings and arrows of Tata QC,
Or to take arms against a sea of niggles,
And by opposing book instead: The Etios by Toyota


Etios: swift but simple Etios: ay, there's the rub;
For in that cabin of Etios, what plastics may come
The car has shuffled off so many features
It gives us pause: there's the dilemma
That brings confusion to so many a buyer;
- car buyer, circa 2011


Sincere apologies to Mods & T-bhpians for inflicting the above. I blame it on mental trauma caused by too many car choices and not enough money to buy them all!

So Manza Elan or Etios V! Both are available at roughly 7.5 lacs OTR in Mumbai and besides the Dzire Zxi, are the only sub 8 lac (OTR) sedans with ABS & Airbags.

I had Td-ed the Manza Aura+ twice in October and really liked the car, its rich interiors, space and many thoughtful add-ons. But I had serious reservations with Tata's reputation for niggles and poor A$$. I also found the clutch and gearbox tough to use, so was holding off a decision. Then heard of the Etios - loved the idea of a Toyota sedan at less than 8 lacs and booked the Etios V without even waiting for a TD car to arrive.

Subsequently TD-ed the Etios twice (two diff cars from two diff showrooms). Loved the car's power and driving dynamics, hated the bare cabin feel and lack of features. With the Elan's launch, confusion increased. Dilemma is now whether to stick with Etios or cancel and go for the Manza Elan?

T-bhp is easily the most amazing motoring forum that there is, was or will be, so thought to get the community's views on this buyer's dilemma. Putting down below a quick pros/cons list for both cars, and looking forward to your views.


Positives for Etios:
  1. FTD quotient: The Etios has an amazing torquey engine, almost feels like a turbo diesel at times, taut suspension, great driving dynamics. The Safire lacks the outright power and sportiness of Etios. The car is seriously Fun To Drive! The Safire is probably good enough for 90% of your city-driving needs, but just doesn't have the thrill factor that the Etios brings. Besides which, the car doesn't love high speeds and a sense of waftiness creeps in post 90 kph.
  2. Clutch and gear: The Etios has a light, short-travel clutch and smooth gearshifts. The Manza I td-ed had a clutch with a long-travel, the pedal would become progressively harder when pressed and for the last inch I really had to push my foot down. The pedal also had a very aggressive return action. I also found it tough to go back to second gear from third. (could be partly due to clutch lifting up slightly under my foot due to the return action). My left knee and elbow were feeling abused at the end of a 15 min Manza TD. A few other Manza TD / ownership threads mention this as an issue, but many don't - guess its one of those Tata things where the system works well in some cars and not so well in others.
  3. Build Quality & Reliability: Etios may suffer from rattles and road noise, but the car feels well put together. Going strictly by Toyota's reputation, you get peace of mind that the car will give many years and miles of hassle-free ownership; With Tata, there’s the a fear of getting a lemon and the mind turns to speculations about what kind of niggles you could end up facing during run-in itself.


Positives for Manza:
  1. Features, features, features:
    The really important ones - seat height adjust, ELR seatbelts, electronic OVRMs. Etios have? No Tanuka-san!
    The other thoughtful conveniences - Blue 5, MID, follow-me home lights, rear armrest, warning buzzers etc. Etios have? No Tanuka-san!
    Even the Manza's OEM ICE (once you get past the casio-fonts) is way better than Etios' OEM's pathetic sound quality. Heck, Etios doesn't even have a mute option!! USB/Aux-In, Four speakers, Two tweeters, Mute function - Etios have? No Tanuka-san!
  2. NVH & Comfort: Both cars have significant engine noise in the cabin (I personally love the sound, so not an issue for me). That aside, the Manza is ahead of Toyota on NVH and cabin comfort. I tested the car on some bad patches with 5 people in the car. All passengers were completely insulated from road noise, bumps, irregularities and vibrations. The comfort was way better than the Etios, which lets through plenty of road noise along with some vibration and harshness as well.
  3. Interiors / Cabin Feel: The Manza offers rich interiors with soft fabrics, good plastics, way better under-thigh support, air-plane style rear reading lights and loads of feel good factor vs the bare, spartan cabin of Etios which reminds me of my current ride (a Maruti 1000). The Manza is two leagues above Etios on this count. I also felt the Manza AC was more effective than Etios. Both my Etios TDs were in slightly warm Feb afternoons (2PM / 4 PM) of Mumbai and the Etios did not manage to chill the rear cabin even after 10 mins (cooling at max with fanspeed of 3). Wonder what will happen on full blown summer afternoons? The Manza's AC is no instant chiller, but felt significantly better than Etios' unit.



Other Notes:
  • A$$ - one would expect Toyota to beat Tata, but I'm not too sure. Tata service seems to be constantly improving, while Toyota is yet to prove that it can bring class service to the mass market. Looking at my own sales experience, the Etios fb page and comments on ownership threads, I feel that Toyota's set up is not yet fully equipped nor motivated to really service Etios customers.
  • Exterior Design - I prefer Toyota's exerior design over the Manza's - it may be conventional, but its also the classier of the two.

What draws me MOST to the Etios is the FTD quotient (power, driving dynamics, high speed stability, smooth clutch and gears) and its presumed reliability. I plan to use the car for at least 5 years, so solid build quality is important. OTOH, I feel let down by the complete lack of features, the bare upholstery and indifferent dealership experience at Toyota. As someone put it in the Etios review thread, it just seems like too much of a compromise. It all boils down to two questions:

1. Is Tata really that risky a buy?
2. Is the FTD differential really so much as to ignore the other value-adds one gets with Manza?

Would love to hear opinions (both subjective and objective) from others who have experience with either or both cars / car-makers.
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Old 13th March 2011, 20:37   #2
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Default Re: Toyota Etios or Tata Manza?

You might have to give more details on your usage - self-driven, highway/city, avg number of passengers, etc. and if you are open to other cars in this budget, etc. I would probably opt for a 2nd hand honda city.

between the two you have figured out the essential difference. driving pleasure vs the general comfort. i don't have experience with manza but even after years of driving a handful of cars - i just couldn't drive an indigo.

why would you not look at a 2nd hand honda city for this budget - or some such choices?
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Old 13th March 2011, 20:57   #3
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Default Re: Toyota Etios or Tata Manza?

Looks like what you want is the Etios with the Manza interior and features.
Funny how Tata car seems to have more essential features than a Toyota.
Would like to have helped you @gautam109, but am in the same dilemna, only that am waiting patiently for the Etios D-4D instead.
Well, my take. Instead of the present experience just think of how you would be 2 years down the line.
' What condition your car would be and will it will feel the same as the one you drove from the showroom two years back.? '
p.s- Nice poetic lines!
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Old 13th March 2011, 21:12   #4
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Default Re: Toyota Etios or Tata Manza?

My 2 cents, put very simply even though the case is not so simple.

My approach to the case would be like the below.
If Petrol buy the Etios, if Diesel by the Manza, both in top of the line trims.
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Old 13th March 2011, 22:39   #5
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Default Re: Toyota Etios or Tata Manza?

Quote:
Originally Posted by musicmanaman View Post
My 2 cents, put very simply even though the case is not so simple.

My approach to the case would be like the below.
If Petrol buy the Etios, if Diesel by the Manza, both in top of the line trims.

+1 to this suggestion.

The Toyota will outlive you and you can prolly well hand it down to your grandson.

On a serious note, if you need a bit of room in the rear, I guess Manza outscores the Etios in terms of bench space and legroom.
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Old 13th March 2011, 23:38   #6
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Default Re: Toyota Etios or Tata Manza?

Manza hands down.

On a side note, if you can consider Etios than why not Logan? The suspension is class apart.
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Old 13th March 2011, 23:39   #7
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Post Re: Toyota Etios or Tata Manza?

Dear Gautam,

Firstly, Tata is not that risky a buy. Atleast, for the Manza, they seem to be doing all the right things and the car is fairly reliable.

Second, Manza diesel makes a serious case for itself over the Manza petrol. Between the two, the diesel is far more brilliant and capable.

And I did not like the Etios when I drove it. I didnt find the seating and the ride quality to be as comfortable as the Manza.

I have been using a manza for the last 8 months gautam, so you can take my word for it, the car is pretty good and safe.
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Old 14th March 2011, 00:14   #8
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Default Re: Toyota Etios or Tata Manza?

I test drove both - Manza petrol and Etios for around 20 mins each, in city and highway. I would take Manza over Etios in a heart beat.

Well, we were getting Manza aura for 6.33 on road equipped with great features and saffire engine. For similar Etios we were looking at spending above 7 lakhs and with a wait time of 18 months.

Drive wise, i agree with you for Etios, but i found Manza competent enough. It won't out accelerate Etios but it is punchy with good power. Engine reliability would be par since its a Fiat engine and Toyota engine - both are reliable.

I expect small niggles from TATA which may or may not happen with Etios, but i would be looking at spending ~50k more on Etios to make it bearable to stay inside the cabin where we will be spending more time. Manza otoh is superior in that aspect.

The only concern that is stopping us from buying either of these is one with extremely long waiting time for etios and niggles in manza.

If i were you, i would get a civic/city for same price and have best of both worlds - FTD and Quality interiors.
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Old 14th March 2011, 00:23   #9
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Default Re: Toyota Etios or Tata Manza?

Well, i consider ETIOS to be a better designed LOGAN

ETIOS out and out looks to be made to cater to the Taxi segment.

While MANZA is loaded with features, and is better packaged than the either of the two.



Well Have a look at the ad and enjoy
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Old 14th March 2011, 01:03   #10
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Default Re: Toyota Etios or Tata Manza?

While the Manza has all the bells & whistles & the Etios looks bare, the strength of Toyota engineering is enough to keep you at peace !

Most of the TATA products lack finesse & build quality, with several minor niggles.

Years from now when you consider the peace of mind, build quality & reliability, you will not regret your decision of buying a Toyota vehicle !
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Old 14th March 2011, 01:10   #11
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Post Re: Toyota Etios or Tata Manza?

Quote:
Originally Posted by nirmaljusdoit View Post
While the Manza has all the bells & whistles & the Etios looks bare, the strength of Toyota engineering is enough to keep you at peace !

Most of the TATA products lack finesse & build quality, with several minor niggles.

Years from now when you consider the peace of mind, build quality & reliability, you will not regret your decision of buying a Toyota vehicle !
Did you test drive the Manza Nirmal? I agree that what you said might be true for some of the older Tata cars but the Manza is a different ballgame altogether. The diesel has the brilliant fiat multijet and it actually is a very comfortable car.

The Etios is way too minimalistic to compete with the Manza IMO
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Old 14th March 2011, 02:29   #12
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Default Re: Toyota Etios or Tata Manza?

a cousin of mine bought the manza after owning the indica for 5 years and was terribly let down by the poor after sales. he is very unhappy with the constant niggles and long waiting for parts.
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Old 14th March 2011, 07:28   #13
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Default Re: Toyota Etios or Tata Manza?

It seems to me like you actually want to buy the Manza Elan, but are not able to come to terms that you want to buy a Tata over a Toyota.

My two cents, forget the brand, buy the car you like.


The only thing I will add is about the Tata Service. I can tell you one thing from my experience at Tata Service and from people I know, there is vast difference in Tata Service, if you own a Indica or a Vista, or Sumo, Indigo CS and if you own a Manza, Safari, Punto, Linea and Aria. The higher management is taking things very seriously and riding the employees very hard indeed to improve the service experience of the premium cars and differentiating them from the rank and file of the Tata stable. So if the service experience is the major concern with the Manza, then I think you should definitely go for the Manza.

Also, this seems to be the perfect time to buy the Manza, after the first upgrade. Remember how much the Indica V2 improved from the first gen Indica.
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Old 14th March 2011, 08:01   #14
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Lightbulb Re: Toyota Etios or Tata Manza?

Frankly I've not come across any negative reviews on the manza so far,i wonder why people keep implying that it will fall apart any moment
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Old 14th March 2011, 08:04   #15
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Default Re: Toyota Etios or Tata Manza?

I like the looks of the Manza as the Etios looks really wierd to me.

I have driven the Manza Petrol.

I think the car is quiet good. The ABS works perfectly and even the OEM tyres give good grip. The Car's Suspension was also quiet good.

The car's engine was quiet nosiy inside cabin and it would take a bit of time for the car to hit decent speeds.

I like that the clutch is a bit heavy as my car's cluctch is really heavy so maybe I have got used to it. The Gearbox is smooth.

I have not driven the Etios but believe me I think you should choose the Manza as it gives a Safer feel while the Etios is the Lightest Sedan in India so it will feel wierd on very bad roads.

You can send me a PM if you have more questions on the Manza Petrol.
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