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Old 9th March 2011, 15:36   #1
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Default Innova or SX4 Diesel?

Hi Folks. Based on all the good advise I have received in this forum for my previous Post (Need advice on Buying a Used X Trail), I test drove a number of vehicles and shortlisted the Innova VX and the SX4 Zdi (Diesel).

On road price of Innova in Hyderabad now is about 14.50 lakhs, and the SX4 is about 10.50 lakhs. I need the vehicle only end of May, so the waiting times for these vehicles are not a concern.

I am planning to use this vehicle predominantly on the highways, so I shortlisted only the models having Airbags and ABS. Not all driving will be on smooth tarmac - I expect 25% of the roads to be the like of our so called state highways. No 'offroading' but definitely some 'bad-roading' is expected and therefore, high GC is a mandatory requirement.

I also expect to do considerable driving on narrow ghat roads. Only two of us with baggage most of the time, occasionally we could be five people with luggage.

Budget is not a constraint, but I am wondering whether it makes sense to spend 4 lakhs more for the Innova. I plan to keep the car for 3 to 5 years. I know SX4 will be more fuel efficient, but given my limited use of 10,000 to 15,000 kms a year, it does not matter much.

I test drove both vehicles and my impressions are:

SX4 - Excellent gear shift - very smooth. Light steering and very good brakes. Pulls cleanly (in second and third) without much turbo lag, so it should not be a trouble overtaking on highways or to climb ghat roads.

I am quite worried about two things - one is the poor visibility around corners because of the 'A pillar' and the other is the poor resale value of the petrol SX4 (may be Diesel will be different!).

Innova - Slightly wobbly gearshift, can feel vibrations. Not difficult to use, but no where as smooth as the SX4. Strong pickup at low speeds (I did not feel any turbo lag at all - seems to pull cleanly). Very surprised at the turning circle and the ease of driving. Excellent visibility.

I am 50, a very steady and careful driver (touch wood, no accidents for last 32 years). I enjoy driving and want a vehicle that will be nice to drive and reliable.

Thanks for your advice - SX4 or the Innova? I am also wondering whether it makes sense to buy a one or two year old used Innova which has done 25,000 kms or so, which will come for around 12 lakhs.
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Old 9th March 2011, 16:04   #2
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Default Re: Innova or SX4 Diesel?

Did you consider Tata Aria, heard good reviews about it. It has side airbags too, check it out.
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Old 9th March 2011, 16:18   #3
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Default Re: Innova or SX4 Diesel?

Quote:
Originally Posted by vartakavi View Post
I also expect to do considerable driving on narrow ghat roads. Only two of us with baggage most of the time, occasionally we could be five people with luggage
Is this your second car? Then I'd rather go for Innova. As a second car, I don't need to think much when I have to pick up relatives from station/airport, or use it to pack up ladies in neighborhood to do their shopping things.

As the only car, Innova is slightly more complicated in the city. But you have already stated you won't me using much in the city.

SX4 Diesel? I prefer VW Vento.
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Old 9th March 2011, 18:36   #4
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Default Re: Innova or SX4 Diesel?

What is driving you to buy this new car. Is it -

1. Space for more than 5 people in the car for at least 20% of the time - You need to go for innova or one of the SUVs
2. Space for <=5 people in the car most of the time - You need to go for SX4.

I would stay away from Vento for now due to -
1. High cost of spares (One of the Team-BHPian who had a front bumper damage is papying close to 1 L for repairs. even with Insurance he would have to pay upto 40K from his pocket).
2. Unknown A.S.S. I am sure nothing can beat a Maruti in terms of A.S.S. Both on reach as well as the value for money I found Maruti the best followed by Hyundai.
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Old 9th March 2011, 19:35   #5
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Default Re: Innova or SX4 Diesel?

If its going to be only vehicle, then you can go for a Ford Fiesta instead of SX4.
You'll get a great engine, good interiors, Superior Ride quality and Ground Clearance is also good for Indian roads. Ford A.S.S is not as bad as it was few years ago and 90% spares are cheaper than Hyundai.

Innova would be good as your second vehicle and most suited for highway drives.
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Old 9th March 2011, 20:09   #6
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Default Re: Innova or SX4 Diesel?

I think you should definitely go for the Innova. Trust me, I own cars of both Maruti and Toyota and no Maruti can match Toyota refinement and build quality. The innova is a car for all practical purposes. My Innova has clocked 1.2lac kms and it is still ready for more. My driver who drives it, is a really rash driver and literally abuses the car during runs but still i haven't heard a single rattle or any type of cry :P
The SX4 on the other hand, being from the house of maruti known for rattles will not be able to withstand this. Toyota After sales is also really good and you will not be disappointed. The best part of toyota is 100000 kms and 3 years hassle free ownership guarantee.

The Innova will make long distance travel a pleasure for your family. I think you should definitely go for the Innova.
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Old 9th March 2011, 21:01   #7
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Default Re: Innova or SX4 Diesel?

If you want a diesel and you are ready to spend close to 12-14L on the innova and also have an option of SX4 as an alternative, i say go for Cruze.

Quote:
I am planning to use this vehicle predominantly on the highways
This is the car to drive in the highways.

If price is not a problem just ignore the SX4 and Innova and go for the Cruze
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Old 9th March 2011, 21:18   #8
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Default Re: Innova or SX4 Diesel?

Thanks for your comments and suggestions.

Yes, this will be my second car. Currently I have a Tata Indigo (2004) and an Alto. The new car will replace the Indigo. I plan to keep the Alto for city driving.

The Innova / SX4 will be used predominantly for long distance driving and as one of you pointed out, occasionally to pick up someone from the Railway station or Airport.

I dream of driving to the Himalayas and also to various corners of the country. One of the important considerations for shortlisting Innova and SX4 is that service for Toyota and Maruti is widely available even in medium sized towns. I have seen Innovas doing well as taxis in Leh and also in interior Madhya Pradesh. I quizzed the drivers and they told me they get very good support from Toyota. If they have a problem with the vehicle, they call the nearest Toyota service centre, and the service engineer tries to diagnose the problem over phone - he comes in next day with the spares needed and fixes the problem. Both Toyota and Maruti are rated high for their service - of course, Maruti spares and service are less expensive, but then I understand Toyota vehicles are more reliable.

No Vento for me - service is available only in large cities, and availability of spares and quality of service is not proven. Sorry, but I am not interested in Ford or GM.
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Old 9th March 2011, 22:21   #9
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Default Re: Innova or SX4 Diesel?

Considering your age I would suggest you to stick with Innova as it would give a peaceful and trouble free experience. Toyota vehicles are build to last and trust me you can drive it for more than 15K KM without a service, i have seen people doing even 20K without a service though they are petrol(read - Corolla). I have driver two Toyota cars and still own one, So I would strongly recommend you for Innova.

@nfsfreak - New Fiesta is around the corner and it is not advisable to buy a dated model as @vartakavi is worried about re-sale value. And to the point on spare parts, you are completely wrong. Ford is known for its expensive spare parts and that was the main reason for their lower sales. After Maruti, its Hyundai whose spares are very cheap in the market.
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Old 10th March 2011, 00:37   #10
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Default Re: Innova or SX4 Diesel?

You have mentioned typical usage as 2 persons only, with 5 occasionally. In this case, I don't think there is any case for the Innova or rather any MPV over the driving pleasure and ergonomics of a sedan. I'd take the SX4 any day. I can live with Maruti rattles given their reliable service network.

Though I have not done the exact math, I suspect TCO for the SX4 over 5 years would be much lower than the Innova.
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Old 10th March 2011, 01:13   #11
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Default Re: Innova or SX4 Diesel?

If you dont need space for seven, i would stick to a sedan.
The innova is a fine vehicle in its own right, but for sheer driving pleasure its not going to be able to compete with a sedan.
The sx4 has great ground clearance and would be very comfortable tackling bad roads. Add to that a decently sized boot and you are good to go for a long highway trip.
My vote goes to the sx4.
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Old 10th March 2011, 10:32   #12
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Default Re: Innova or SX4 Diesel?

You can do with the SX4, I feel. Dont worry about the resale price, Maruti diesels have unbeleivable resale values. You will lose much lower than the Innova per year (in absolute terms - in percentage it could be equal).

As another TBHPian said, the TCO could be much lower for the SX4, given the huge savings in interest cost (or opportunity cost, if you have own funds), if not anything else.

Only problem with SX4 is the famed 'Maruti special' rattles, though mechanical reliability will be quite good. Get a good music system for that

If you can get a good used Innova at good prices, that is an option you have to give a good look. But you need to get around 3 Lakhs off for a 2-3 year old vehicle, that too with decent usage.

Last edited by CoolFire : 10th March 2011 at 10:39.
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Old 10th March 2011, 10:56   #13
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Default Re: Innova or SX4 Diesel?

@camchennai I agree with your comment about Fiesta being dated today but sx4 is also no fresh car by any means. We have a 2 Ford cars and a Hyundai in my house and i can tell you that the ford A.S.S these days does a very competent job when compared to Hyundai A.S.S.

My choice would be the innova for the simple reason that this is the most comfortable vehicle this side of 15 lakhs for passengers. Very good to drive too. The only issue is the size but will not be a hinderance since it will be used in highway mostly.
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Old 10th March 2011, 12:42   #14
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Default Re: Innova or SX4 Diesel?

Quote:
Originally Posted by vishnurp99 View Post
@camchennai I agree with your comment about Fiesta being dated today but sx4 is also no fresh car by any means. We have a 2 Ford cars and a Hyundai in my house and i can tell you that the ford A.S.S these days does a very competent job when compared to Hyundai A.S.S.

My choice would be the innova for the simple reason that this is the most comfortable vehicle this side of 15 lakhs for passengers. Very good to drive too. The only issue is the size but will not be a hinderance since it will be used in highway mostly.
You are right. The SX4 is as dated as the fiesta. With the new fiesta on the cards, I think one considering these two options should wait for the new fiesta.

Between the innova and the SX4, the innova would be a better option any day. It is as good as driving a sedan. You wont have to worry about slowing down when you see a curve or a turn like you have to in other muv's. Plus, the whole family can travel comfortably in the innova. I recently traveled to the Ganga in my innova with 3 of my friends, it was as comfortable as any other sedan. The luggage and all the other things were accommodated easily even though we didn't have a carrier.
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Old 10th March 2011, 12:52   #15
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Default Re: Innova or SX4 Diesel?

My recommendation is basis your requirements highlighted...i.e.,

1) This being a 2nd car
2) Other car which you will have being a small one i.e., Alto
3) Your age
4) Liking to drive across India so wide A.S.S network becomes important.
5) Drive across Ghats so a GC is very important

Between the two cars (Innova & SX4) - I would simply vote for Innova. Yes - you do have few other options (a Scorpio) - but not getting into that since you might have considered few other subjective aspects or home ministry preferances!!

Believe me - having driven a Innova for 55K KMS in 3+ yrs, taken her to Kodai, Munnar, Yercaud, Mantralayam ghat roads (not leh :(....one day certainly!) - I have no complaints. The only things the car required to change was Brake Pads, Clutch & Tires in the last 55k run! Absolute pleasure to drive in ghats.

Go for the new Innova Vx!
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