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Old 20th July 2009, 17:35   #1
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Default Maruti Suzuki Alto LXi - Gearbox Question

Dear all,

I own a 2007 model Alto LXi and clocked 30k approximately. Lately some kind of grumbling noise started coming from the gearbox. Also, when changing to reverse gear, it creates a loud "THUD" sound. Then, when idling with AC switched on, again the grumbling noise can be heard.

The problems started exactly after a month when the warranty was over. Unfortunately I didn't have any extended warranties to cover as well. My mechanic told me that it was a problem with certain batch of gearboxes that were manufactured during 2006-2007 models. He also told me that my car might have been used as a "DEMO CAR" at the dealership which should have complicated the problem.

Can fellow BHPians suggest any solutions? I am even ready to change the gearbox at the worst case. Can anyone tell me the cost of an alto gearbox ?



- thanks,
Rajesh

PS : Btw, I am driving the car in chennai. But always get my car serviced in my native city - Erode.
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Old 20th July 2009, 19:36   #2
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Default ...shaft bearing play may be the reason

Seems like one of the Bearings holding Driven or Driving shaft has developed a Play thus causing grumbling right after starting the engine, in such case ignoring the problem will spoil all gears and entire gear asembly will have to be replaced.
Get in touch with Maruti authorised service centre ASAP


[quote=rajeshsundaram;1392761]Dear all,

I own a 2007 model Alto LXi and clocked 30k approximately. Lately some kind of grumbling noise started coming from the gearbox. Also, when changing to reverse gear, it creates a loud "THUD" sound. Then, when idling with AC switched on, again the grumbling noise can be heard.
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Old 21st July 2009, 10:39   #3
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Default Worn out bush

Quote:
Originally Posted by Lightning2 View Post
Seems like one of the Bearings holding Driven or Driving shaft has developed a Play thus causing grumbling right after starting the engine, in such case ignoring the problem will spoil all gears and entire gear asembly will have to be replaced.
If it is a worn out bearing, then no doubt its serious and needs replacement asap. However, the thud sound could also be due to a worn out gearbox bush. Happened in my M800 atleast twice, not serious and easily driveable till the next service.

I would suggest you get it checked nevertheless.
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Old 21st July 2009, 11:00   #4
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Originally Posted by rajeshsundaram View Post
He also told me that my car might have been used as a "DEMO CAR" at the dealership
What was the reading on the ODO when you bought it? Also, didn't you visit the stockyard to do an inspection of the car before it was sent for the PDI by the dealer?

From what you have mentioned, it does seem like worn out bearings in the gearbox. Replacement is the only way to go.
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Old 21st July 2009, 17:21   #5
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gpa,

The ODO reading does not mean much. It is very easy to connect/disconnect the speedometer if it is electronic. When I went to inspect my Alto before registration, the ODO reading was 81 KM. When I went there next day after the registration, it was still 81 KM. The RTO is about 2 KM away from the showroom, so it should have read at least 85 KM. When I questioned the sales guy about this, he immediately opened the bonnet and connected the Speedo cable in a jiffy!

I got angry and asked him if it was used as a demo car. Then I walked straight in to the manager's office to complain. The explanation given was they normally disconnect it if the ODO reading is close to 100 as otherwise customers will complain! He said if the vehicle was delivered by truck to the yard the reading will be low. Sometimes stocks arrive by train and the railhead is at Trivellore, 50 KM away. The cars are driven to the city from there. Even in the city if the dealer has multiple yards, cars are sometimes moved from one yard to another, again by driving them. He said they have checks in the system and the cars can't be misused, most definitely an unmarked car will not be used as a demo car, ISO standards .. blah blah blah! Looks like it will be disconnected at the exact KM that is entered in the PDI report at the yard.

I finally believed him. Because when I had requested a test drive earlier, I was politely told it was not possible as a demo car was not available. They did not offer me any of the fresh cars standing there.

Last edited by Gansan : 21st July 2009 at 17:23.
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Old 21st July 2009, 18:57   #6
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Gansan
For me 80 KM is quite a lot of Reading for a New car ,I will never buy a Mechanical Vehicle having done this much Mileage

Erode Gear Box Problem mentioned here is also unlikely to have Got inherited even if It was used as Demo car because the sales guy will Never allow even the Demo vehicle to be "Abused".
Moreover 30-35k is too less a run for Gear Box problem to surface NORMALLY

Most likely cause is the Manufacturing defect in/or Faulty workmanship , Bearing or gear box casing


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gpa,

The ODO reading does not mean much. It is very easy to connect/disconnect the speedometer if it is electronic. When I went to inspect my Alto before registration, the ODO reading was 81 KM. When I went there next day after the registration, it was still 81 KM. The RTO is about 2 KM away from the showroom, so it should have read at least 85 KM. When I questioned the sales guy about this, he immediately opened the bonnet and connected the Speedo cable in a jiffy!

I got angry and asked him if it was used as a demo car. Then I walked straight in to the manager's office to complain. The explanation given was they normally disconnect it if the ODO reading is close to 100 as otherwise customers will complain! He said if the vehicle was delivered by truck to the yard the reading will be low. Sometimes stocks arrive by train and the railhead is at Trivellore, 50 KM away. The cars are driven to the city from there. Even in the city if the dealer has multiple yards, cars are sometimes moved from one yard to another, again by driving them. He said they have checks in the system and the cars can't be misused, most definitely an unmarked car will not be used as a demo car, ISO standards .. blah blah blah! Looks like it will be disconnected at the exact KM that is entered in the PDI report at the yard.

I finally believed him. Because when I had requested a test drive earlier, I was politely told it was not possible as a demo car was not available. They did not offer me any of the fresh cars standing there.
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Old 21st July 2009, 19:43   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gansan View Post
The ODO reading does not mean much. It is very easy to connect/disconnect the speedometer if it is electronic.
Gansan,

Thank you for the informative post. I have personally gone to inspect all the cars that I have bought before they were registered at the stockyard and all of them had odo readings between 15 to 21 kms on their odos.

My Alto when purchased last year had 11 kms on its odo and when I finally took delivery, it had gone up to 21 bearing in mind the trip to the RTO and back to the dealership.

Coming back to the topic, I must say that 30,000 kms is far too early for the bearings to fail and can be attributed to a defective part. A few Altos of the 2006 batch also had defective clutches.

Cheers,
gpa
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Old 21st July 2009, 19:49   #8
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i know exactly what you are talking about. the Grrr grr noise when you are at low rpms with higher gears. its not the gearbox its the drive shaft, and it comes in all altos.
i have gone through all this and no one might have ever investigated to the depth which i have. even the MASS mechanics were thinking that the problem lies with my car. we tested 5-6 new cars. all had that noise.
we contacted MUL for the same. even thier engineers dint know this. later got a confirmation from the design dept via MUL at mass.its the excessive play in the drive shaft bearing housing kept to counter the vibrations of the 3 cylinder pot. i am still not convinced.

the thing is that suddenly you have started noticing the same after 37k kms. and once the thing gets into your mind more is sound you hear.

a piece of advice, forget that sound if its coming in low rpms. if the sound vanishes in high rpm its the same what i have said above,.
if the sound is there in all rpms then something is wrong.

the thud sound in reverse is due to clutch not disengaging completely. try tightening the clutch once and check,
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Old 21st July 2009, 20:14   #9
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Amit,

What would explain the grinding sound at idle with the a/c on? If it were indeed the driveshaft, things should be silent when the a/c is on and the car is idling, right?

Can you throw some light on this?

Thanks,
gpa
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Old 21st July 2009, 22:38   #10
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^^ ya if its in idling then some other issue. once i had this sound due to broken fan blade. one of the blade was half broken.
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Old 22nd July 2009, 10:11   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lightning2 View Post
Gansan
For me 80 KM is quite a lot of Reading for a New car ,I will never buy a Mechanical Vehicle having done this much Mileage
I read the PDI tips in the TBHP thread "On buying a new car" before I bought the car. It says around 100 KM on the ODO is about par for most cars. This may vary slightly between cities and brands. The dealership I selected is a reputed one. I checked all the cars that were there awaiting registration. Almost all of them had ODO readings between 30 KM to 90 KM.

If stocks arrive by truck at the yard the cars will have a low reading. In a small/satellite city, delivery will be only by truck. In a large city,if they arrive at rail head, depending on the distance from rail head to the city the reading will have to be be more. Check if the ODO reading matches with the one entered in the yard PDI report. (This will be entered in the owner's manual, usually in the service record page). If both of them match and the car has an extremely low reading, most probably the speedo was disconnected after the PDI at the yard. Again if the dealer has multiple show rooms in the city and one yard, the distance between yard and show rooms also counts.

At least in the older model cars, disconnecting and reconnecting the speedo was not easy, had to be done in the gearbox and usually underneath the car. In the latest cars with electronic speedometers, it is not an issue at all. Even I can do it in 10 seconds flat!

@ gpa
Please find out if stocks arrive also by rail at Bangalore. If they do, the rail head is at Whitefield. Distance to B'lore city from there is at least 20 KM, so such cars can't have a reading < 20 KM on the ODO. Think about it!

BTW, I think only Maruti has sufficient volumes to send stock by rail. All others may be using only trucks.

Last edited by Gansan : 22nd July 2009 at 10:20.
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Old 22nd July 2009, 12:36   #12
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Please find out if stocks arrive also by rail at Bangalore.
The stock at Mandovi Motors arrives by trucks. There are always 2 or 3 trucks parked outside on the bylanes adjecent to the stock yard.

My Alto's Pearl Silver color was not readily available and so I got a call from the manager of the stock yard when the car had arrived as I wanted to do a PDI of my own before they could register the vehicle. He told me that they get the stocks by truck.
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Old 23rd July 2009, 13:30   #13
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@Amit
Yes, the grrr, grrr sound fades away once the RPM rises. My mechanic told the same thing you told here. Good number of alto gearboxes has this issue after running 10-20K kms average. Anyway, I will try to get from him, what could be the real cause for such a problem in alto? Regarding the "thud" sound, he said it can be rectified. So I hope i wont hear that again after the next service.

@gpa, gansan
Unfortunately I was admitted in a hospital when my alto was about to be delivered. So I am unable to visit the yard and do a inspection, and asked the sales guy to deliver it himself to my home. One background info to be mentioned here is.. I booked the car at ABT Coimbatore (for sentiment reasons) which is 100kms from my home in Erode. When the car reached my home, I did managed to check the ODO reading which was found to say 121kms exactly. It sounded okay at that time. But knowing that the speedo cable can be removed.. I am totally helpless in knowing if the car was used earlier or driven earlier. All blind hopes!! :-)

Thanks a lot for the information guys. I will talk to my mechanic and see if something can be fixed. :-)
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Old 3rd March 2014, 18:34   #14
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Default Re: Maruti Suzuki Alto LXi - Gearbox Question

Does anyone have a schematic diagram of the layout of a Maruti Alto gearbox and final drive ? If not, please can someone suggest where I could get one ?

I have a project in mind to convert a Maruti Alto into a hybrid by :

- installing a small 24 Volt lead acid battery pack (maybe 2 truck batteries) in the back of the car
- cutting away a bit of the top cover of the gearbox or final drive so as to install a 3 KW electric motor (probably a starter from a truck) which will propel the car at up to 25 KMPH
- installing a basic control system linked to the accelerator pedal to control the current to the motor to run the car at below 25 KMPH with the gearbos in neutral and the engine stopped
- arranging for charging the battery at night from a regular 240 V power point using a battery charger.

The issue is : how to connect the electric motor to the gearbox or final drive ?

Any thoughts are welcome.

Regards
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Old 28th November 2015, 14:10   #15
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Default Re: Maruti Suzuki Alto LXi - Gearbox Question

2011 Alto, 28K on the odo, clutch replaced due to a damaged diaphragm spring at 27.5K Kms, all service done structly by the book and only MGPs used. Now the real challenge, during 4th service, transmission oil was replaced and ever since winters have been a nightmare. Jammed gear box during cold mornings, grinding noise from the transmission (occasionally) until the gearbox has warmed up. The manual says gear oil should be 75W90 whereas I wont be surprised if the MASS used 80W90, yet to get this piece confirmed from them. and 80W90 AFAIK, is a conventional oil whereas 75W90 is synthetic/semi synthetic and performs better in winters. I am going to get the oil changed to 75W90 irrespective because I have had enough of the winters issue. The reason why I am sharing this information here is to figure out if there could be another reason behind it or anything else which may be done to get rid of this issue, thanks
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