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Old 8th June 2009, 12:55   #1
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Arrow Fiat Linea - Various niggling issues? Post your experiences here.

I have been smitten by Linea's looks like most since 14 Jan 2009 and seriously considering either Linea or GP by September 2009. I am following Linea's threads with great interest as and when time permits, but sheer volume of posts of initial drive experience is rather overwhelming. Form whatever I have read I am getting concerned about all those niggling issues that many Linea owners are facing and I am wondering if FIAT made some compromises in Linea while keeping price down. No doubt Linea is a great VFM product with drop-dead gorgeous looks. But it seems that Linea at this stage is bit of a question mark on Fiat's legendary solid build quality. So far I haven't heard/read about any serious problem with Linea but have already read a lot about petty but annoying problems far to often to overlook. Another owner from Pune mentioned that his car has been to service center for 6 times so far!

I am trying to make a list of all niggling (or even serious) Linea issues here so that people planning to buy Linea know what problems they might face. Moreover, if someone from Fiat is lurking here, they can get a consolidated list of niggling issues here and hopefully Fiat will spend some time and take efforts to fix those petty issues to give us a much more reliable Linea that we love so much.

I am starting with issues known to me, please contribute with your own experience of Linea issues and service center experiences.

Niggling Linea Issues -
  • Poor plastic quality - I have heard many people complaining about lever coming off or broken. Can't Fiat put some better quality plstic in a 9L car?
  • Chrome stuff on E+ coming off - Yet another petty but annoying issue. Lot of people seem to have faced this problem, and though it is easily rectifiable - it sure does annoy me if chrome strip comes off in a 1 month old car without any serious accident. Frankly, I would prefer car without any chrome on outside - but if they put it, it should stay on!
  • Rattles, Squeaking sound - Some (many?) people are also complaining about the rattles, squeaking sound in newer Lineas and worse still, the service center is unable to figure out the reasons for those rattles.
Can fellow TBHPins add their own inputs about other niggling issues and their experiences with Fiat service?

I am really getting skeptical about putting my money on Linea or GP now and Fiat earlier reputation about A.S.S. doesn't inspire any confidence either! :(

I am sure this Beautiful C+ segment car deserves a better level of refinement and quieter interior experience. What do you guys say?
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Old 8th June 2009, 13:00   #2
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This is news to me! Can someone owning a Linea confirm?
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Old 8th June 2009, 13:03   #3
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Manish,

Whoever buys the cars from first lots off the factory they are bound to get some small issues which the company rectifies later. I know this shouldnt happen but it does happen with many manufacturers and not only fiat.

After 2 months of owning this beauty, have not faced a single issue from the list you put on. Thats why people say to wait for 1-2 months after launch of car and then buy so manufacturer corrects all niggling faults.
Carspg linea is the worst suffering of the lot with those rattles and sqeaks. Opendro also has a Linea MJD and still didnt report any rattles.

Only recommendation of mine is to improve sound insulation. 1 more thing to note is that :
So many issues are cropping up in Linea and showing up maybe because the front 2 pages of Team bhp initial ownership reports are filled with so many LINEA ownership reports. Dont think other cars dont have such small faults,
a member's 1.6S fiesta just 10 days old refused to crank for some reason but it doesnt mean fiesta is a bad car. More ownership reports will spring up more good and bad points.
Fiat has to improve the A.S.S and thats it.

Last edited by coolboy007 : 8th June 2009 at 13:06.
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Old 8th June 2009, 13:27   #4
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The issues you have mentioned other then rattles and squeaks are minor irritants.

However, you forgot the biggest niggling issue in this car. Many owners report that the driver's seat comes down on it's own after a few days of usage. That, IMO, is a big fault specially since it's a Fiat because finding that perfect driving position in any Fiat car is a big challenge.
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Old 8th June 2009, 13:40   #5
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I doubt if we need a dedicated thread as we have scores of user reviews already in place!!
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Old 8th June 2009, 14:09   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pradster View Post
I doubt if we need a dedicated thread as we have scores of user reviews already in place!!
Well, it is needed as a single source of information about the problems. There are far too many Linea threads and it's difficult to gather list of issues (no matter how small) by reading all those posts. As you can see, the second poster himself is not aware of those things!

I agree each new car may have these smallish issues, but I think these petty issues are not one off case, they exist in most Lineas and I think the reason is some serious cost-cutting. We don't mind paying another 10k to 15k more for Linea if we are getting better quality plastic. The idea of thread is not to find fault with Linea, but to make potential buyers such as myself aware of what they are going in for and what can they expect when they are rightly concerned about putting 9+ lacs of their hard earned money.

@ amit- Thanks for adding this stuff on Seat adjustment, how did I forget this?

I actually expect others, especially Linea owners to add such inputs so that we can have a comprehensive list of those issues. Maybe we can take it up with Fiat dealer or maybe Fiat itself when we have Linea owners meet with Fiat next time. I hope I would be one of the owners by that time. AMEN!
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Old 8th June 2009, 14:12   #7
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Manish

I would have been happier if some existing Linea Owner has started this thread and it would have been more credible.

So please dont bring bad name to car that you dont even own/or dont have experience with.
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Old 8th June 2009, 14:16   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by simply_sunny001 View Post
Manish

I would have been happier if some existing Linea Owner has started this thread and it would have been more credible.

So please dont bring bad name to car that you dont even own/or dont have experience with.
Huh?
Search my older posts - why would I bring bad name? "niggling" word itself suggests petty issues and I am very much interested in owning Linea and hence trying to figure out! Why should that put a doubt on credibility?
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Old 8th June 2009, 14:28   #9
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+1.

I guess, who does not own, should not try to point such problems. Sometimes such problems are very individual specific.

So if one need help in buying, should start an individual help thread, with Linea owner suggesting pros and cons. threre is already so many reviews on board.

As you are already skeptical about buying Linea, I am sure you must have built the opinion after reading all those reviews. How will finding out more issues, help to change your opinion. You need to ask about the pros to change your opinion

For e.g. poor plastic is subjective to personal taste.



Quote:
Originally Posted by simply_sunny001 View Post
Manish

I would have been happier if some existing Linea Owner has started this thread and it would have been more credible.

So please dont bring bad name to car that you dont even own/or dont have experience with.

Last edited by rkbharat : 8th June 2009 at 14:32.
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Old 8th June 2009, 14:31   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by manish7 View Post

Another owner from Pune mentioned that his car has been to service center for 6 times so far!

Niggling Linea Issues -
  • Poor plastic quality - I have heard many people complaining about lever coming off or broken. Can't Fiat put some better quality plstic in a 9L car?
  • Chrome stuff on E+ coming off - Yet another petty but annoying issue. Lot of people seem to have faced this problem, and though it is easily rectifiable - it sure does annoy me if chrome strip comes off in a 1 month old car without any serious accident. Frankly, I would prefer car without any chrome on outside - but if they put it, it should stay on!
  • Rattles, Squeaking sound - Some (many?) people are also complaining about the rattles, squeaking sound in newer Lineas and worse still, the service center is unable to figure out the reasons for those rattles.
I'm the person whose Linea has been to the workshop 6 times in just a little over 2 months. While I'm unhappy that my problems haven't been fixed yet I'm happy that Fiat is taking the initiative to try to make things right. The following write up should give you a good idea of why my car has been to the workshop 6 times till now!

1 - Several small issues and a couple of rattling sounds - The small issues were fixed. They claimed they fixed 1 rattling issue but the other one will need time. Since I didn't want to leave my car I decided to get it done during first service.

2 - First service and several rattling sounds - They did the first service. The rattling sounds had gone up and I gave them the list. They claimed that they couldn't hear most of them and the ones that they could hear were fixed. Got my car back and all of the rattling sounds were still there.

3. - Rattling and squeaking sounds - In addition to all the rattling my car had also developing some squeaking sounds. Not trusting the service advisor I spoke to the GM of the workshop and he assured me that everything would be fixed. Unfortunately after he had my car picked up he dissapeared and I had to be content with talking to the service advisors. They claimed that the majority of my complaints don't exist. They did agree that one sound was coming but the part was back ordered. They didn't know when the part would be available. They assured me that other than the one part not being available they have fixed everything else. I tried calling the GM several times but he was ignoring my calls/sms/e-mails. Of course a majority of the issues were not fixed. Also the car was very dirty from the inside.

The GM had still not called me back. In the meanwhile I had e-mailed FIAT but a week had passed and I hadn't heard from them also. Then another BHPian bought to my attention that Fiat was meeting with customers (PUG and FCI) at the workshop where my car was serviced. I told the person from PUG who was organizing the meet about the problems I was having. He told me he has forwarded my e-mail to the GM of the workshop and that I should come for the meet. I met with the owner of the workshop and several Tata/Fiat people. They assured me that all my issues would be taken care of ASAP. Mr. Mangesh Kodalkar from Fiat apologized for not responding to my e-mail as he was out of town on vacation. I was pleasantly surprised to see Tata/Fiat's attitude and was confident that they would fix all the problem I was having.

4 - Rattling and squeaking sounds - The various noises in my car had increased even further. True to their word the workshop called me a week later and had my car picked up. They gave me an Indica as a loaner. They kept the car for 4 days and kept me updated every day. They agreed that all the rattling, squeaking, etc were coming and that they would take care of all them. When I got my car back a majority of the issues were fixed. They even had my car cleaned quite well. Unfortunately they had scratched the car in several places. The GM followed up on delivery and I told him about the scratches and also some of the issues that were still pending. I also asked him why I was charged for some screws! He told me to drive the car a few days and see.

Most the sounds that were present previously came back ! True to his word the GM called me and I told him about the issues. It was decided that I will take my car to them to diagnose the issue.

5. Meeting with GM and service advisor - Took the car for a couple of test drives and showed them all the issues. They said they will need Fiat's help to fix the issues. The service advisor also said I shouldn't benchmark with Toyota as they will be better!! I decided against leaving the car there since they didn't know when some one from Fiat would be available.

6. Fiat person available at the workshop - Car was picked up today. They have given me an Indica as a loaner. Will see how long they keep my car this time!

Last edited by CarsPG : 8th June 2009 at 14:34.
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Old 8th June 2009, 14:36   #11
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some of the issues i faced and rectified.


1. Steering column creaking sound (very irritating)
2. Door Rattling (All doors especially Rear Left door. Panel gap is evident, so the vibrations)
3. Shock Absorbers (Heard a lot of booming sounds)
4. Door handle in Rear left (opening the door is cumbersome)
5. Boot Lid rattling sound (hear some noise while opening the boot using remote)
6. Fuel Lid is not working properly.
7. Glove box is not closed completely (Panel gap is evident)
8. Head light adjustments. High beam is not efficient in Highway driving.
Beam is fallen very near, so distance hurdles can not be seen.
9. Outside air/smoke will be coming in while AC recirculation is activated.
10. Screeching noise while braking in slow motion. (Itís not because of ABS. I tried some other car having ABS)
11. Speakers jarring to be checked
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Old 8th June 2009, 14:44   #12
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@ CarsPG - Thanks for posting this. Since you're in Pune itself, can we meet sometime after Wednesday? I'll send you my mobile number in a PM.

I am also happy that Fiat is taking initiative to improve its service. And I understand that non of the issues are big, but smaller issues do take away piece of mind and as a potential buyer of Fiat car I am keen on knowing about seriousness or frequency of such issues before I take the plunge. Since I have been noticing someone or the other mentioning about those niggling issues, I thought of opening a thread that would put them all together. Did I use any irrational derogatory statement against Fiat?

I am interested in buying GP Diesel top-end version if it's less that 7L OTR and if I really like it in flesh. If it's higher than 7L OTR , then I might wait a bit longer and I will buy Linea MJD. I am asking only because I am genuniely interested, I didn't bother to ask about Ritz as I didn't like the the car at all.
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Old 8th June 2009, 14:48   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by aks_karthik View Post
some of the issues i faced and rectified.


1. Steering column creaking sound (very irritating)
3. Shock Absorbers (Heard a lot of booming sounds)
6. Fuel Lid is not working properly.
7. Glove box is not closed completely (Panel gap is evident)
Now that you mention it I faced some of these issues as well. All of these were fixed in my car as well. They replaced several parts on visit number 4. I've posted the details in my ownership review.

Quote:
Originally Posted by manish7 View Post
@ CarsPG - Thanks for posting this. Since you're in Pune itself, can we meet sometime after Wednesday? I'll send you my mobile number in a PM.
Sure. I'l PM/SMS you once I have my car back. Maybe we can meet on the weekend.

Last edited by CarsPG : 8th June 2009 at 14:54.
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Old 8th June 2009, 14:48   #14
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This was my biggest worry when Linea was launched.

Just like SX4, everybody loved her and it was heavy rain of lineas.

But as seen in all SX4 post; now-a-days, Linea posts are also full of niggling issues.

I fear, Linea will become an another SX4, nice car but failed because of niggling issues.
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Old 8th June 2009, 14:54   #15
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The chrome door trims do come off very easily. The TD car I got didn't have them. I asked the sales guy why it's not there on one side. Calm reply he gave, "Sir it flew off when someone was test driving it last week".
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