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Old 25th March 2014, 15:05   #406
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Default Re: Best 7 Seater SUV in price bracket INR22L-30L (no resale- service (ASS) considere

Somehow my experience on test drive with Santa Fe was not as encouraging in terms of ride quality. Where Pajero sport and to some extent fortuner felt also good, santa fe has made middle row seat occupants bounce a bit.

Again this is only my observation.

Last edited by GTO : 26th March 2014 at 14:27. Reason: Typos
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Old 25th March 2014, 15:23   #407
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Default Re: Best 7 Seater SUV in price bracket INR22L-30L (no resale- service (ASS) considere

Hi Nikhil,

I own a Pajero Sport and have had a chance to drive all of these vehicles (exept for the Santa Fe) quite extensively (friends/colleagues etc), please find my comments as follows:

Quote:
Originally Posted by NikhilReddy View Post
I am planning to buy a SUV within INR 22L-30L on road.

Following are the requirements:

- Best ride comfort in city (70%) and on highway (30%)
- Best safety features.
- Should be mechanically trouble free and minimum on maintenance.
- Excellent build quality.
- Should be able to seat 7 (5 Adults and 2 Kids)
- Prefer 4X4 but willing to compromise this features as safety and comfort takes precedence.

Pajero Sport (have one dealer in Hyderabad so no issues of servicing)


This car is quite narrow and is best suited for 4 adults + 2 small children. The second row seating has hard plastic cladding between the door and the seat which is extremely uncomfortable for 3 abreast seating.

This car, I have found to have the best driving mannerisms of the bunch. It truly comes into its own between 60-180 KmpH and is ideal for highway environments. Power and torque delivery of the Fortuner are better suited for the city, but over all driveability goes to the Pajero, despite a slightly harder clutch. IMHO, this is the best of the larger SUV's in this price bracket, but do take this with a pinch of salt as I own one.

Hyundai Santa Fe

The fluidic was not available when we purchase late last year, so we test drove the older model. The SUV does indeed have the best safety kit and may be the most comfortable for your requirements (note: this does not mean that it will be comfortable, simply the most comfortable); The build quality is actually superb, despite the cheaper quality materials used. The TD vehicle had 60,000 odd kms on it and not a squeak or rattle (quite impressive considering it must have been abused by 100's of drivers); Frankly, with a forgettable drivers experience, imminent launch of the fluidic and dealer arrogance in terms of pricing, we were just simply unwilling to consider it.

Fortuner 4X4

This would be the safest choice, but, with lackadaisical interiors, and a spine churning suspension, it is not something I would consider. Given your requirements of 3 abreast in the second row, give this option some serious thought.


Mahindra SSongyong Rexton

This car has the most comfortable ride, seating 3 abreast is okay (not great) but, there is very limited leg room. The steering is rather disconnected and the gear box could really do with improvement. The underpinnings have been tried and tested for one and a half decades and mechanically, it should be bullet proof. If you can live with the badge, the driving experience and the interior space, this may fit your requirements.



Final Note: We came from a 7 year Innova ownership, we were bored of the car and wanted something more fun to drive for our trips. However none of the above will truly be comfortable for 5 adults. When it comes to 3 abreast seating, the Pajero Sport is not exactly accomplished. The Rexton is low on leg room and driving experience, the Fortuner will turn your stomach into puree and has the opulence of an Innova. The Santa Fe may fit your bill, but obviously with the Fluidic out, I am not writing my complete opinion about the car since I have not seen/driven the fluidic personally. Over and above these points, they are all low on thigh support as well as leg room, the old Santa Fe certainly was. None of them have much luggage space when the 3rd row is occupied.

Unless you need these 4x4 Behemoths, don't buy one. If you are chauffeured, don't buy one. Unless you have owned an Innova or absolutely hate the way it drives buy that!
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Old 25th March 2014, 15:56   #408
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Default Re: Best 7 Seater SUV in price bracket INR22L-30L (no resale- service (ASS) considere

If money is not an issue and off-roading is not a requirement then in my opinion Santa-Fe it should be based on your requirements.

It has been available and liked in much more advanced markets than ours. It has a full set of safety features with full 5 stars in the NCAP scores. Interiors are class leading and the engine power is sufficient to stay ahead of any SUV available in India in this price band. The ride and handling is acceptable (not a deal breaker). In my ownership experience with the last generation Santa-Fe reliability has never been an issue and despite a simpler looking interiors there are hardly any rattles or squeaks. The newer generation is supposed to be better.

If you are worried about the resale then please go with the Fortuner. It should serve you well though it would be a compromise on overall refinement, luxury feel and to some extent safety (I haven't seen NCAP scores for the Fortuner sold in India and as far as I'm aware it is not sold in any developed country/market).
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Old 25th March 2014, 16:08   #409
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Default Re: Best 7 Seater SUV in price bracket INR22L-30L (no resale- service (ASS) considere

The Toyota Fortuner may as well be the only well rounded option in this segment is what my belief is. I just considered only the Pajero Sport & the Fortuner as upgrade options to our old Innova. I was in the same soup and ended up with the Fort.

Mistubishi Pajero Sport:
- Exclusive car! Not many on the road.
- I like the looks of this car and I believe it has a better ride.
- Cabin is actually quite narrow in comparison to the Fort and I don't think 3-abreast is a comfortable option in the 2nd row let alone 3rd row. The fortuner manages 3-abreast in the 3rd row as well (albeit a tight fit, but you can manage that).
- People have quite a downer on the interior of the Fortuner, but the one in the Pajero Sport is hardly designed by Pininfarina is it?
- In terms of equipment too, the ICE on the Pajero is just spartan.
- That better ride translates into more body roll around the corners, which is expected from a car of this size, but the Fort manages to keep it much better controlled.
- HM-Mistubishi's chapter in India is something really hard to fathom and it didn't inspire any confidence for me to aspire to own their flagship model. Especially when the only dealer is way in the suburbs while I live in South Mumbai.

Toyota Fortuner:
- Way too common now, too many on the roads and thats expected its the best selling 25L vehicle in our country.
- Interiors mirror the Innova which is not something you'd want when you are replacing your own innova and are paying 10L+ to its pricetag.
- Ride is quite unsettling and is very bouncy at low speeds. However as speed increases matters become much better. Running slightly lower tire pressure does help the ride at low speeds a bit.
- Space on the inside is on a premium save for headroom (Innova's better as it isn't as tall). With all seats up, I guess the Fortuner also has the biggest boot.
- Toyota's well established network of dealerships and service centres and my personal relationship with them helped me favour the fortuner.
- In terms of engine characteristics and driving dynamics (save that awful long-throw gearstick) I found better in the Fortuner. That 3.0 D4D engine is a gem, power delivery is very liner and clean, has excellent drivability for its size.

I'll just give you a personal disclaimer - If you want a comfortable, safe, practical, bulletproof reliable, well-rounded package to ferry 5 adults + 2 children (or even 7 adults for that matter). Forget the SUV's and get the Innova. We had 2 spanning 8 years and with its replacement with the Fortuner we still have to agree apart from the snob value and looks of the car, bigger engine/power, the Innova was pretty much a better all-round product.

IMO the 4x4 options are just not necessary thats why I got the RWD Fortuner. Cheaper, Better FE and feels slightly more sprightly if you've driven the 4x4 and observed both car characteristics very carefully.
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Old 25th March 2014, 16:44   #410
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Default Re: Best 7 Seater SUV in price bracket INR22L-30L (no resale- service (ASS) considere

Quote:
Originally Posted by n:CorE View Post
The Toyota Fortuner may as well be the only well rounded option in this segment is what my belief is. I just considered only the Pajero Sport & the Fortuner as upgrade options to our old Innova. I was in the same soup and ended up with the Fort.
Interesting how we both had the same dilemma and arrived at the same conclusions albeit about different cars.

Quote:
Originally Posted by n:CorE View Post
Mistubishi Pajero Sport:
- Cabin is actually quite narrow in comparison to the Fort and I don't think 3-abreast is a comfortable option in the 2nd row let alone 3rd row. The fortuner manages 3-abreast in the 3rd row as well (albeit a tight fit, but you can manage that).
- People have quite a downer on the interior of the Fortuner, but the one in the Pajero Sport is hardly designed by Pininfarina is it?
- In terms of equipment too, the ICE on the Pajero is just spartan.
- That better ride translates into more body roll around the corners, which is expected from a car of this size, but the Fort manages to keep it much better controlled.
- HM-Mistubishi's chapter in India is something really hard to fathom and it didn't inspire any confidence for me to aspire to own their flagship model. Especially when the only dealer is way in the suburbs while I live in South Mumbai.
- I did not find 3 abreast to be comfortable in the Fortuner in the middle row. It is better than in the Pajero however.
-As you rightly say, Interiors are spartan in both cars, Quality of materials in the Pajero however are far far superior.
- ICE on the Fortuner is not designed by Nakamichi with Focal components either is it? Truth be told, ICE is abysmal in both cars and begs for an upgrade
- I found body roll similar in both cars, if anything, it is the Pajero that feels more stable over all.
-The Bangalore dealer is excellent, infact he will go to war with HM for you if need be. We get better service levels with Mitsu than with Nandi/Ravindu Toyota (After a Qualis, an Innova and several friends with Corollas etc) we regularly have to complain to Toyota to get our car serviced and out the gate in time. My driver has to wait 4 hours for a gate pass every couple of months. This is a problem faced by many Bangaloreans. Toyota Dealers can be terrible. Toyota corporate on the other hand, really come down hard on wayward dealers. Best thing about Toyota.

Quote:
Originally Posted by n:CorE View Post
Toyota Fortuner:
- Way too common now, too many on the roads and thats expected its the best selling 25L vehicle in our country.
- Interiors mirror the Innova which is not something you'd want when you are replacing your own innova and are paying 10L+ to its pricetag.
- Ride is quite unsettling and is very bouncy at low speeds. However as speed increases matters become much better. Running slightly lower tire pressure does help the ride at low speeds a bit.
- Space on the inside is on a premium save for headroom (Innova's better as it isn't as tall). With all seats up, I guess the Fortuner also has the biggest boot.
- Toyota's well established network of dealerships and service centres and my personal relationship with them helped me favour the fortuner.
- In terms of engine characteristics and driving dynamics (save that awful long-throw gearstick) I found better in the Fortuner. That 3.0 D4D engine is a gem, power delivery is very liner and clean, has excellent drivability for its size.

I'll just give you a personal disclaimer - If you want a comfortable, safe, practical, bulletproof reliable, well-rounded package to ferry 5 adults + 2 children (or even 7 adults for that matter). Forget the SUV's and get the Innova. We had 2 spanning 8 years and with its replacement with the Fortuner we still have to agree apart from the snob value and looks of the car, bigger engine/power, the Innova was pretty much a better all-round product.

IMO the 4x4 options are just not necessary thats why I got the RWD Fortuner. Cheaper, Better FE and feels slightly more sprightly if you've driven the 4x4 and observed both car characteristics very carefully.
I agree with most things you have observed about the Fortuner, save for the better driveability comment. IMO that crown goes to the Pajero. Yes, the slightly smaller displacement means the turbo lag is quite annoying, but once it is engaged, its an absolute riot and is certainly rev-happy compared to the Fortuner. Bullet Proof reliability is a phrase that I use for both SUV's, safe? not so much for either of them. I just find the Pajero to be better built and better designed.

Last edited by imp! : 25th March 2014 at 16:46.
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Old 25th March 2014, 17:02   #411
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Default Re: Best 7 Seater SUV in price bracket INR22L-30L (no resale- service (ASS) considere

Good point about the ICE, the one in the Fortuner isn't anything to talk about either. Same goes with reliablity (given your experience with Mitsu in B'lore and mine with Toyota in Bbay). And both cars aren't as safe as they should have been.

I have had a very good experience with Toyota in the past plus my family has been quite a sucker for Toyota. We've owned almost all cars in their whole portfolio till date except the Etios twins, even one odd import (Toyota Corsa). Almost all of which were bought from Shinrai Toyota. So we are very well recieved in the dealership, so when I couldn't exactly distinguish much in the end between these two products, I went for the favorite.

Drivability for me means a lag-less turbo-engine and you've got to admit the Fort scores a point over the Paj for that. I have never really taken her up to the red-line ever because a car of this size really isn't meant to do that. Have my Cruze & GT for that

In terms of design, its always subjective. The looks of the current-gen Fortuner really work for me. The front to me is really majestic and imposing while on the other hand could be too much chrome for someone else. So its highly personal I believe.
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Old 25th March 2014, 18:30   #412
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Default Re: Best 7 Seater SUV in price bracket INR22L-30L (no resale- service (ASS) considere

Owning a Fortuner and an Innova both in my garage, and by reading your requirements, even I come down to suggesting Innova to you. Its a better deal in terms of comfort.

Also, by reading other impressions here about Fortuner ride quality - its bouncy yes but not a back bone breaker as many might have told you about. Also there is a record of delivering vehicles usually with high psi and simply by lowering the pressure to 30 psi does wonders here. I have driven my Fortuner for about 45K kms now - Cost of ownership has been less than my 2011 i20 CRDi 5 speed! Same for Innova - absolutely no nonsense.

Personally comparing the two engines - Fortuner wins big time and is the reason I pick this one for my drives. Innova I feel is a bit sluggish and you cannot discount the 'Taxi' image it carries.
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Old 25th March 2014, 21:23   #413
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Default Re: Best 7 Seater SUV in price bracket INR22L-30L (no resale- service (ASS) considere

After stating the need for ride comfort and safety, I find it appalling that people are recommending the T-Fort. It has very poor ride quality and the Interiors are a huge let down. As for safety, well today's sub 8lac hatchback comes with the same level of kit.

I can honestly recommend only the Pajero Sport and the Rexton. I have not driven the Santa Fe, not a huge fan of Hyundai styling but I have heard several good things about it so do check the car out once more.

cheers!
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Old 25th March 2014, 23:08   #414
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Default Re: Best 7 Seater SUV in price bracket INR22L-30L (no resale- service (ASS) considere

I doubt if Rexton is right vehicle for you specially since you mentioned the need for decent 3 rows of seating. The rexton's third row is horrible with absolutely no space to accomodate your legs ( even a child's for that matter).

My pick from your list would be soft roader like the Santa Fe. However if image factor is not very important then no car in the 20L+ segment can beat the seating comfort of an Innova followed by the XUV500.
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Old 26th March 2014, 09:53   #415
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Default Re: Best 7 Seater SUV in price bracket INR22L-30L (no resale- service (ASS) considere

I would recommend the Santa-Fe out of the options given by you.

Don't even consider the Rexton if you need a 7 seater vehicle. Rexton's last row seat is a joke! Me and fellow bhpian SDP checked out the 3rd row seat at an auto show. Here's what SDP said in another thread "Me and Aman volunteered to seat in the 3rd row of the Rexton. The 3rd row of the Rexton is a joke. Its a lousy seat placed directly on the floor: super-cramped and uncomfortable. " I would like to add that the seat isn't comfortable even for a kid!

I would also recommend the Innova in case you want a no nonsense 7 seater vehicle and even save some money.
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Old 26th March 2014, 10:10   #416
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Default Re: Best 7 Seater SUV in price bracket INR22L-30L (no resale- service (ASS) considere

Oh and if you are considering the Innova even for a second, do give the Aria a chance. It was always the better looking, better riding, better insulated, less harsh, better off-road, more safe car Now it comes with with a few more goodies including a harman kardon audio system and more power but mainly, a 1.5lac kms warranty, 70k kms warranty on the clutch and 2lac kms warranty on the timing belt indicative that Tata has finally succeeded in making this a more reliable beast
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Old 26th March 2014, 10:54   #417
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With the kind of history Aria has, I don't think many will consider it. Esp the reliability and service part. Given the two, Innova would would be a hands down choice thanks to reliability and peace of mind it brings.
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Old 26th March 2014, 10:54   #418
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If you have Pajero in your list and if you start comparing products in this category, it wont make any sense to you at any point. Either Exclude Pajero from the list. Or go and buy a Pajero. Pajero is a Benchmark.

I would say, go for Pajero. If you are ready to invest so much, then it doesn't make any sense buying something else.

Quote:
Originally Posted by IshaanIan View Post
Oh and if you are considering the Innova even for a second, do give the Aria a chance. It was always the better looking, better riding, better insulated, less harsh, better off-road, more safe car

and more power but mainly, a 1.5lac kms warranty, 70k kms warranty on the clutch and 2lac kms warranty on the timing belt indicative that Tata has finally succeeded in making this a more reliable beast
Ohh.. Warranty is like Insurance. Every one wants it. But no one wants to use it. With Tata's, you will be forced to use it. You will be forced to have more and more of it. So Tata always gives more. But it never works this way. This is the reason why no one suggested it till now , No one prefers to buy it too.
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Old 26th March 2014, 11:00   #419
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Ohh.. Warranty is like Insurance. Every one wants it. But no one wants to use it. With Tata's, you will be forced to use it. You will be forced to have more and more of it. So Tata always gives more. But it never works this way. This is the reason why no one suggested it till now , No one prefers to buy it too.
I am sorry but I beg to differ. Why wouldn't someone want to claim something on warranty? Also, if the company is aware that parts are unreliable, then they would not bother giving such good warranties on them. A good warranty, is indicative of the company's support to their customers and there could be no better relief when buying a car than that knowledge.

Last edited by IshaanIan : 26th March 2014 at 11:02.
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Old 26th March 2014, 12:02   #420
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Default Re: Best 7 Seater SUV in price bracket INR22L-30L (no resale- service (ASS) considere

If you don't need a 4x4 then don't go for the Fortuner. I say this as a Fortuner owner.
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