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Old 11th February 2012, 12:34   #31
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Default Re: My new escape: Pre-owned Skoda Laura 1.8 TSi- 10K DRIVEN / FIRST SERVICE UPDATE

Soot from the brake pads (asbestos?)... Very painful to maintain the spider alloys of my vRS (i wash once a wk too), relatively the 5 spoke alloy on the TSi must be easy.

By any chance, your corolla ran on rear drums?

BTW, I also saw my neighbour's i20 alloys having a black spray every week.

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Originally Posted by Santoshbhat View Post
The brake dust formation after highway runs is more than during city runs. But it is there even when the car has run only within the city. I personally wash the car every weekend. Love to keep those alloys shining . Over a period of one week, the front rims look like they have a sprinkling of fine black powder. When I pour water on to the centre hub, black water flows out. This wasn't the case in my Corolla. I drive very sedately in the city. So its not like the brakes are working overtime.
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Old 11th February 2012, 15:36   #32
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Default Re: My new escape: Pre-owned Skoda Laura 1.8 TSi- 10K DRIVEN / FIRST SERVICE UPDATE

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Soot from the brake pads (asbestos?)... Very painful to maintain the spider alloys of my vRS (i wash once a wk too), relatively the 5 spoke alloy on the TSi must be easy.

By any chance, your corolla ran on rear drums?

BTW, I also saw my neighbour's i20 alloys having a black spray every week.
Yep brake pad dust. The 5 spokers are easy to clean. I've got 16" L&K alloys which are also 5 spoked. More than the alloys looking dirty, I am concerned about wearing out the brakes. If the brake dusts are forming week after week on the alloys, surely the pads from where they are falling are wearing down. This phenomenon occurs only on the front wheels and and the rear wheels are free from the brake dust.

My Corolla had discs all round and the alloys would have this kind of brake dust sprinkling only after long highway runs and none during intra city runs.

My car is coming up for 1st service soon. I will ask them to check for abnormal wear on the brake pads. How long would you expect brake pads to last under normal driving conditions?
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Old 13th February 2012, 11:58   #33
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Default Re: My new escape: Pre-owned Skoda Laura 1.8 TSi- 10K DRIVEN / FIRST SERVICE UPDATE

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Originally Posted by Santoshbhat View Post
You mention that the car feels more driveable at lower rpms. Do you notice any effect at higher revs as well?

I happen to find a lot of brake dust formation on the front wheels. I thought that this was an initial phenomenon and would reduce as the brakes were bedded in. But somehow it has not reduced and the phenomenon has continued. Would like to know how has your experience been in this area.
Hi Santosh, I find the power delivery to be slightly more linear post-2k RPM (after turbo kicks in), however this could just be a psychological effect...

I havent noticed any brake dust formation though will keep an eye out for this.

Also have to point out that the rear rattle has not been rectified. Any ideas on what this could be? Rear right side within the cabin...
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Old 13th February 2012, 12:03   #34
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Default Re: My new escape: Pre-owned Skoda Laura 1.8 TSi

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Nirav - Dude, you just nailed an *almost* brand new Laura TSI for the price of my Rapid TDI!

Brilliant decision, I just didn't have the nuts to go with a new TSI due to the insane fuel costs, and of couse settled with the Rapid TDI.

Neverthless, this is an absolute brilliant car, no questions asked. One of the best engines I've ever driven. Congratulations, and have fun mate !
Thanks Kryptonite! I think i lucked out in terms of timing, and it also helped to keep a keen eye out on the classifieds and at the car dealerships- good deals are very much out there! For example, i just saw a 2010/11 Audi A4 with less than 10k on the clock sold for 22.5L with KA regn! Also saw a barely used Audi TT 3.2FSI (i think 10-12k on the clock) for 40-something.

The engine lights me up every time i step on the gas, and i was sold on this car from the first time i test drove it! Am seeing more and more Lauras on the roads of late, and understandably so: which other car would you buy for 15-20L?
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Old 17th February 2012, 17:10   #35
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Default Re: My new escape: Pre-owned Skoda Laura 1.8 TSi

Quick update: its been about 2 weeks since the service and I've noticed that a lot of outside smells and pollution are sneaking in through the AC even though the recirculate button is on. I suspect they haven't fitted the new filter correctly. Vinayak has driven me half mad- they basically have 2 service centres: KR Puram and Okhalipuram. There is NO common call centre for the 2, and so you are left with no option but to communicate directly with whoever answers the phone at your designated centre. Also, showrooms have little or nothing to do with service centres. More often than not they will promise to call you back within "10 minutes" which in reality is "never". Worse, the manager who oversaw my car at Okhalipuram has since quit and so there is nobody with any idea of what I'm talking about. Ive requested for a mechanic to be sent over to my house asap, to which the woman on the line replied "ill talk to the GM and call you back in 10 minutes." That was 30 minutes ago.

I think ill have to try out TAFE for the future maintenance as this is pretty ridiculous service. Will keep you posted on the outcome.

Also, are they supposed to rotate the tires during service? i.e., switch left rear with right front and right rear with left front?
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Old 17th February 2012, 18:34   #36
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Default Re: My new escape: Pre-owned Skoda Laura 1.8 TSi

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Quick update: its been about 2 weeks since the service and I've noticed that a lot of outside smells and pollution are sneaking in through the AC even though the recirculate button is on. I suspect they haven't fitted the new filter correctly. Vinayak has driven me half mad- they basically have 2 service centres: KR Puram and Okhalipuram. There is NO common call centre for the 2, and so you are left with no option but to communicate directly with whoever answers the phone at your designated centre. Also, showrooms have little or nothing to do with service centres. More often than not they will promise to call you back within "10 minutes" which in reality is "never". Worse, the manager who oversaw my car at Okhalipuram has since quit and so there is nobody with any idea of what I'm talking about. Ive requested for a mechanic to be sent over to my house asap, to which the woman on the line replied "ill talk to the GM and call you back in 10 minutes." That was 30 minutes ago.

I think ill have to try out TAFE for the future maintenance as this is pretty ridiculous service. Will keep you posted on the outcome.

Also, are they supposed to rotate the tires during service? i.e., switch left rear with right front and right rear with left front?
Did you ask them to fix the air leak from the dashboard that causes the windscreen fogging up? They have to open up the dash to do that. Maybe they did not fix it back properly. My car is due for 1st service and I am planning to drop the car off at the very same service centre tomorrow. I believe the service centre has been functioning since a month. Their KR puram centre is way too far off for me.

I will be going down there personally, I'll let you know what their set up is like. I will try to talk to the service adviser about this issue. Lets see what he has to say about it. Keeping my fingers crossed as of now. THis will be my first taste of the infamous "SKODA A.S.S"

Service centres normally offer to do wheel balancing, allignment and rotation, unless you specify otherwise. Check your bill to see whether they have charged you for it. I have already got it done outside. Infact I got it done the first time at 7.5k kms and the second one just recently at 15k kms.

Last edited by Santoshbhat : 17th February 2012 at 18:39. Reason: Added another point.
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Old 18th February 2012, 12:17   #37
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Default Re: My new escape: Pre-owned Skoda Laura 1.8 TSi

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Also, are they supposed to rotate the tires during service? i.e., switch left rear with right front and right rear with left front?
Just got back after dropping my car off at Vinayak Cars' Okalipuram service centre. Brand new service centre which has been operational for 15 days or so. I asked them whether they are equipped with all facilities required for service. I am told that except body shop and wheel alignment/balancing they have got everything else. Apparently these facilities will be up shortly.

They said they replace the cabin AC filter during service. I spoke to them about outside smell coming inside in your car, which they serviced recently. The service advisor seemed ignorant about any such issue being reported. I told him to watch out for this problem. Looks like there's something they did not do right while replacing this filter in your car.
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Old 18th February 2012, 13:10   #38
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Default Re: My new escape: Pre-owned Skoda Laura 1.8 TSi

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Originally Posted by Santoshbhat View Post
Just got back after dropping my car off at Vinayak Cars' Okalipuram service centre. Brand new service centre which has been operational for 15 days or so. I asked them whether they are equipped with all facilities required for service. I am told that except body shop and wheel alignment/balancing they have got everything else. Apparently these facilities will be up shortly.

They said they replace the cabin AC filter during service. I spoke to them about outside smell coming inside in your car, which they serviced recently. The service advisor seemed ignorant about any such issue being reported. I told him to watch out for this problem. Looks like there's something they did not do right while replacing this filter in your car.
Thanks so much for this Santosh. They just called me, said the only way they can check is if I bring my car to the centre myself. Planning to do so on Monday. Funny that they havent noticed the issue reported, as it is clearly on the service invoice under "list of issues reported"! Am getting a bit annoyed at this lack of information sharing on their end. How was your experience overall?
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Old 28th January 2013, 16:22   #39
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Default Re: My new escape: Pre-owned Skoda Laura 1.8 TSi

Just sent the car for its annual service (since apparently i drive it less than 15k km per year). Here are my thoughts:

Vinayak Skoda called me to remind me of the upcoming service date, however i had to send it in early as my battery was on the verge of dying out- realised this on a road trip to Chennai recently when my driver had some starting trouble, and got the battery low warning message on the stereo GUI shortly after. Fortunately the car was able to make it back to BLR and even run normally for a couple of days till i could spare her for the service.

The service advisor was in constant touch with me, and my only points to concentrate on were the battery replacement and that incessant and irritating rattle (which i had now narrowed down to a loose left front window). I also requested a full interior clean and to make sure the wheel balancing and alignment was done. They took 2 days to complete the above jobs, and unfortunately when the car was returned the seats were still wet, leading to a damp odour in the car for a couple of days. Also, the steering was set 'off centre' which i immediately reported and sent the car back for. It came back still off centre, but i couldnt be bothered to send it back for a third time as i plan to change the tyres soon and will address the issue then, as it is very minutely erronious now. The rattle was fixed and the car is running perfectly as of now. Overall not too nightmarish in terms of A.S.S but still not a super experience- my Honda City had a better service experience!
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Old 7th February 2013, 15:52   #40
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Default Re: My new escape: Pre-owned Skoda Laura 1.8 TSi

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...
i had to send it in early as my battery was on the verge of dying out- realised this on a road trip to Chennai recently when my driver had some starting trouble, and got the battery low warning message on the stereo GUI shortly after. Fortunately the car was able to make it back to BLR and even run normally for a couple of days till i could spare her for the service.

The service advisor was in constant touch with me, and my only points to concentrate on were the battery replacement
...
Hmm...why do you need to go to service center for replacing the battery? It can be done at a battery shop!
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Old 9th February 2013, 16:10   #41
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Hmm...why do you need to go to service center for replacing the battery? It can be done at a battery shop!
Yes, true, but she was due for a service in any case so 2 birds with one stone, with the least time away from her!
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Old 10th February 2013, 16:15   #42
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Default Re: My new escape: Pre-owned Skoda Laura 1.8 TSi

CONGRATULATIONS !! Welcome to the 1.8TSI family on TBHP.. we are really getting bigger day by day.

Will recommend you try to get a set of stanley leather covers for the car. Makes a helluva difference in the premium feel of the car.

Also if you have about 80-85k to spare, go for a set of 16s with 205 rubber. You wont regret it.
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Old 10th February 2013, 16:19   #43
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Default Re: My new escape: Pre-owned Skoda Laura 1.8 TSi

Steering offcenter is an issue with the lauras, particularly in Ambiente trim. Narrowed this down to the 195 tyres, the EPS, and the small size steering where even the slightest off center is felt. Have 205's on the VRS and am yet to experience this. Also our roads are terribly engineered. so even if you feel your steering is off center, it may not be always be so. Skoda service engineers in India also have NO IDEA on how to fix this.
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Old 24th April 2015, 15:07   #44
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Default Re: My new escape: Pre-owned Skoda Laura 1.8 TSi

Hi All,
Been a long time since my last update so Ill try and be as succinct as possible-

Status
Done close to 60k glorious kms, with a mixture of long distance (Chennai, Coorg, Tirupati, Masinagudi, Nagarhole, Naidupete) and city driving (Peenya factories, international airport twice a week at least). Have sent her for service every 10k-12k kms primarily with Tafe Access (I tried Vinayak once or twice but was overall unhappy with their responsiveness and performance) and have been quite satisfied, with a few issues of course, being Skoda ASS after all (for example, after the cooling pump replacement, they didnt screw the underbody guard on properly leading to massive vibration. Discovered that only 2 out of 10 screws were put back!).

Wear and Tear
Replaced the brakes all round, rear suspension, cooling pump (15k, ouch!)
Will be replacing front suspension soon
The right side electrical fuses shorted, had those and wiring replaced outside as Skoda wanted to change the entire panel board for 12k! Was a 30min job for a regular mechanic
Changed the tyres from the previous Bridgestone Potenzas to Yoko C drives with a slightly uprated size of 205, which I am very happy with.

Overall the car still drives, smells, and feels like new and I couldnt have made a better choice- I still get a broad smile on my face everytime I floor it over 2.1k RPM and feel that surge of power press me to the back of my seat! Even when compared to a car double its price like the C class (W204), the laura TSI feels far superior in every way: Steering feel (super important for me), suspension, build quality, et al.

Unfortunately, i feel the time is coming for me to move on and I will be in the market for a replacement later this year- any suggestions? I definitely dont want to step down in terms of engine ability- this beaut has me addicted! Will be seriously considering the new C class, new Octavia, all new Superb, CLA, 3 series. Have seen some amazing deals on the 5 series but i find it too barge-like for the city, and back seat comfort is non-existent. Suggestions? Sub 40L would be ideal.
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Old 24th April 2015, 18:38   #45
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Default Re: My new escape: Pre-owned Skoda Laura 1.8 TSi

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Unfortunately, i feel the time is coming for me to move on and I will be in the market for a replacement later this year- any suggestions? I definitely dont want to step down in terms of engine ability- this beaut has me addicted! Will be seriously considering the new C class, new Octavia, all new Superb, CLA, 3 series. Have seen some amazing deals on the 5 series but i find it too barge-like for the city, and back seat comfort is non-existent. Suggestions? Sub 40L would be ideal.
If you intend to drive around Peenya industrial area, make sure whatever you buy has decent ground clearance and underbody protection. I don't think any of the cars you've mentioned above can handle those craters as of now!!

Bangalore roads and low slung luxury sedans are not made for each other. 'What next after the Laura TSI' is a question which I too am struggling to find an answer to.
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