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Old 19th September 2011, 15:42   #1
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Default Hyundai Verna Fluidic Disappointment. And SOLD!

I was a happy Ford fan, having used the Ford Fiesta 1.4 Duratorq ZXI for 3 years, followed by another 3 years in the Ford Fusion + variant.

As said by many, the Ford handling is superb.
Even in my Ford Fusion ( which, IMHO, was the most under-appreciated car, specially after the outfitting of the Diesel engine, but more on that on another thread) handled exceedingly well, its 195 mm GC swallowing Mumbai potholes with ease.

We try and change our mid-sized cars every 3 or so years, so when the time came to dispose off my Fusion,(sometime in April 2011) my next obvious choice was the upcoming New Ford Fiesda.
The Ford guys here were unsure when the vehicle would be launched. Some said July, some said August.

Inside information from some acquaintances in Ford revealed that the car would not have a beige interior, even as an option in the higher variants.
Major let down. I personally do not like black interiors in any of my cars, and will gladly compromise even on the exterior colour if beige interior is not available in my choice of colour.

At around the same time, news about the Verna Fluidic was doing the rounds. I thought to myself, maybe its worth a look.
Did some research online and the spy pics and specs were impressive.
Met our local Hyundai dealer from whom we've purchased a couple of small cars in the past.
He let us know that the top of the line diesel variant would be available in automatic option.
He also said that this car would be a game changer for Hyundai in this segment.
From the reports that were coming in from various auto magazines, I decided to go for it.
Without even looking at an actual car or taking a test drive, we paid 1 lac booking amount almost a month before the official launch.
After much eager waiting, we got delivery of my 1.6 CRDI SX (O) AUTO version on 14th of August. The car was white in colour and looked absolutely stunning.

The features in this variant are top class, many of them not available even in MERCS and BMW's.
But right from the first drive, I felt something was a miss.
The steering response is very lazy. I felt I had to work extra to make it behave like I wanted it to.
The rear seats, are placed so low, that, inspite of the generous leg room, anything more than an hour in them would make the passengers very uncomfortable.
I thought the different handling was something I needed to get used to.
But as the days passed, I got more and more disappointed with the handling.
At speeds above 70 the car fish-tails slightly. I needed to grip the steering wheel tightly. Also I got the feeling that any bump or change in the road level would make my car 'take off'.
Perhaps it was only my perception, but I didnt feel safe in the car.
Ive driven it in a straight drag on the Sea-Link at speeds upto 130. The engine felt like it could go much faster, but the body roll and handling scared me.
Now maybe, it is because Ive not driven a Japanese / Korean car in this segment for a very long time. The last Far eastern car my family had was the Suzuki Esteem, in 1994.
We 've owned Fiats, Skodas, Fords and Mercs ever since.
These cars feel firmly planted at any speed and go exactly where you point them.
The Fluidic was just too ....err..... different for my liking. Never felt safe taking it beyond 80kmph.

The second major beef I 've had with the car is the suspension.
I knew beforehand that the suspension would be on the softer side, but this was just ridiculous.
Any unexpected pothole, even at speeds as low as 30kmph would be met with a loud 'THWACK' coming in from the undercarriage.
It was an alarming sound, almost as if something had broken off from the car.

I called up the dealer and he suggested I show it to the workshop fellows for a lookover.
The workshop people could not find anything wrong.
One of them had the audacity to lecture me on the 'correct ' way to drive.
HA! I told them with all modesty that Id been driving for nearly two decades, a variety of cars, in a variety of countries.
I think I'd know if my driving needed adjustment.

Anyway, as each day passed, the thought of carrying on a full three years in this car became more and more unbearable.

I drive around 30KM per day, and had clocked 800 KM already.
I called up the dealer and said I wanted to dispose off my car.
He was surprised, but was helpful and promised to let me know if he came across any interested parties.

The very next day he called up to say there was someone in his showroom who wanted the exact model that I had and didnt want to wait the 6-8 months for delivery.
To be fair to the prospective buyer, I did tell them about the issues I was facing and my reasons for selling my white beauty. But they didnt seem to mind. I guess they were used to such handling.

I lost some amount on the sale, but then it wasnt too much for me to cry about.

I will definitely miss all the features that have spoilt me, but I felt that car had the basic fundamentals all wrong.

Perhaps it is just me, perhaps I am too used to European / American Cars, but I was sorely disappointed my Fluidic Verna.

Now, as a replacement, I had test driven the Vento Highline TD. Although this comes without auto transmission, I found the car to be accurate in handling, suspension, ride. It did lack several of the features that the Verna had, but at least the basics were firmly in place.
I almost went to the VW showroom to pay the booking amount, when a friend suggested I check out the Optra Magnum TCDI.
I was very skeptical and pooh-poohed his suggestion, as I didnt want to got for a car thats been around for ages, even though the diesel was launched only around 2007-2008.
Nevertheless, at my friends insistence, I called the Chevy guys for a TD.

After a rigorous 2 hour test drive, over the sea link as well as long stretches of Mumbai's pot hole infested roads, I had only one thing to say ; I WANT THIS BEAST!

Features and all the bells and whistles be damned , this car is a sure footed monster, the independent suspension laughing at the rough roads. The high speed drives are a sheer pleasure.

I have booked myself the higher end LT version with leather seats, airbags, ABS...etc. and got a mighty good deal too.
The current OTR price Mumbai for LT version is 1095000, but the Chevy guys giving a discount of 65K.

I'd paid 12,60,000 for my Fluidic, so I think the its a fair trade off between the price and the features.

I am taking delivery during Navratri days, and will update with my initial ownership experience soon!
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Old 19th September 2011, 20:29   #2
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Default Re: Fluidic Disappointment


Welcome to Team BHP. Sorry to hear your story. Many people have different things to say but I totally identify with you and am really sad that you had to buy and sell it so soon.

I had considered paying 1 lakh advance much before the official launch but the good Samaritans Hyundai guys advised me to wait for a proper test drive before booking! Well, I did not like the car-hence had to go else where.

I am glad that you have at last bought the car that you deserve with that nice handling and ride. Please follow Poitive's thread and start yours soon.

All the best Mate-drive safe and have fun. Post your thread soon with loads of pictures.


PS: one question-why did you not consider the new Ford Fiesta?

Last edited by charthom : 19th September 2011 at 20:30.
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Old 19th September 2011, 21:15   #3
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Default Re: Fluidic Disappointment

When you can spend almost 13 lakhs on a fluidic, why did not you try some monster like cruze for about 2 lakhs more. Congrats for both of the purchases.
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Old 19th September 2011, 21:24   #4
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I haven't yet come across a nicely sorted riding and handling Hyundai in India. I love the Santro as a city car and feel that it does its job quite well but all others are very average driving cars.
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Old 19th September 2011, 21:26   #5
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Default Re: Fluidic Disappointment

Its your first post. Seems you joined a bit late.

And your biggest sin: No TD before booking.

But the good thing is that you are now with a very capable though underrated car.

The bad thing is that you let go of Ford Fusion. You won't be getting a capable replacement for it anytime soon. Rest assured.

Also its nice that you did not go for new Fiesta. Does not make sense at that price point. In fact the Ford Classic offer (though not sure if its still on) makes more sense.
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Old 19th September 2011, 21:28   #6
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Default Re: Fluidic Disappointment

Thanks for your honest review, and I am really sad that you had to sell you new Fluidic.

But as regards the Magnum, is it a good handler? I do know that the Cruze is a decent handler, but I am not that sure about the Optra. It also looks dated, though the earlier petrol versions still look good.
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Old 19th September 2011, 22:02   #7
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Default Re: Fluidic Disappointment

Due to an event held by GE Finance at my company recently, I had the opportunity to sit in and compare multiple cars, both hatchbacks and sedans. While a test drive was not allowed, I sat in and compared each and every car on interior quality, rear seat width and comfort and other aspects.

I also like beige interiors in a car. I feel that the combination of beige and gray/black adds that premium look to car. However, I am also particular about the quality of material used to achieve such a look.

I share your experience about the Verna. I was not fascinated by the interiors but I felt that they were a significant step up from the previous Verna. I could only experience one gizmo i.e. the folding of both ORVMs at the touch of a button which was nice. However, I'm 5 feet 11 inches and when I sat in the back, I could sense a dealbreaker i.e. the seating was low but more importantly, the rear window was just placed too high. The combination proved deadly and I had to struggle just to get a glimpse of the outside. This would surely be a problem for many people. I am willing to be open-minded and forgiving about many things (eg: poor rear visibility from the inside) but sadly, I am reminded time and again that Hyundai just can't seem to keep the Korean-ness away especially from the Verna.

I wonder, did you try the new Ford Fiesta? From the reviews, I was not impressed but when I sat in the car, I liked a few things i.e. the soft cushion like rear seat, the interesting voice activated gizmos, good rear visibility etc. and the car felt like a driver's car(but I was not allowed a test drive so I don't know). The rear look from the outside was a bit disappointing though and someone told me that it was priced around 12L which I don't think Ford can pull off. (The fiesta has always been 1L lesser than the Verna and most folks I know have always been deciding whether to chance it with Fords' allegedly bad service for a saving of 1L or go for a Verna. Looks and handling be damned, this is the common man's thinking . At 12L, Ford has made the decision very each for the masses.)

Also, I had TD'ed both the Optra Diesel and the Cruze Diesel automatic before purchasing my City last year. Both vehicles left me thoroughly impressed (though I went for the City for it's all-rounded nature). If price was not a factor, I would've definitely gone with the Cruze but I found the Optra to be the only car in the City's price range that I'd seriously consider for purchase(I did not TD the Vento or the Linea as I don't care for un-established companies without a good after sales network).

Last edited by sydras : 19th September 2011 at 22:06.
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Old 19th September 2011, 22:15   #8
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Default Re: Fluidic Disappointment

@Phenomonstar: I think you have ditched one Korean for the other, nothing else. Do you realize that Optra is a also a Daewoo Nubira? Or did you get carried away by the Chevy Bowtie? You do a drag on the Sea Link road at 130 kph, any car would be dangerous for such a stunt, including your Merc's.
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Old 19th September 2011, 22:31   #9
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You are exchanging a bad-handling car with an average-handling car? You cannot compare the Ford's handling with either of these two cars, really
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Old 19th September 2011, 22:44   #10
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That's quite an unconventional way to start a thread. Though I am surprised that you dumped the Fluidic which is clocking huge sales figures ever since its launch.
Good to see that finally the Chevy was able to clear the benchmark. Do post some snaps of the Magnum.
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Old 19th September 2011, 22:45   #11
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Sad to hear your experience.

When I was searching for a Diesel Sedan, I did went into a Hyundai showroom in Chennai to test drive the Fluidic (? - what do they mean? I personally hate this branding) Verna. The showroom guys told me that they don't have any test drive for the Verna. People book the car with the belief in Hyundai . I didn't utter a word and walked away.
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Old 19th September 2011, 22:47   #12
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Phenomonstar.. very well written. i took a TD of the verna the day the TDs started, and walked away with the exact same feelings, too soft a suspension, claustrophobic rear seats, and no steering response. i wonder how that car is able to sell over 4K units a month, am sure the initial euphoris will settle soon.

Also, one other thing that was a big dealbreaker for me was the instrument holder on the driver side door. it was too low, and my right knee was hitting it very often so much so that by the time i finished the TD, my knee hurt real bad, not sure if others faced this as well!

I have not driven the Optra, so wont comment on your new ride! all the best.
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Old 19th September 2011, 22:52   #13
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Default Re: Fluidic Disappointment

Thanks a lot for the honest review and really sorry about selling your car after having driven it for just 1000 odd kms. Infact on quite a number of occassions I have read people commenting about the rear seats being too low. Is it really that bad? The handling of Verna has been criticized from Day 1 (People have said they kind of feel floating while driving at high speeds). I think within City Verna is all right but on highways it might not be inspiring confidence.

I do not want to sound preachy but I do not think you should be doing those kind of speeds on the sea-link. Anyways enjoy your new ride!
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Old 19th September 2011, 22:57   #14
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Originally Posted by phenomonstar View Post
The features in this variant are top class, many of them not available even in MERCS and BMW's.
Wonder what are these features that Verna sports which Mercs and BMWs don't have. May be it was just an exaggerated expression?
Almost all reviews (even previews) highlighted the issue with the Verna's handling characteristics. Going through some of them would have really helped you to avoid the trouble you had.
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Old 19th September 2011, 23:09   #15
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Originally Posted by Utopian View Post
Though I am surprised that you dumped the Fluidic which is clocking huge sales figures ever since its launch.
Infact the sales figure dropped for the august month; most probably because people took TDs and went away due to the obvious reasons.

Both Ford and Hyundai disappointed me with their game changer models i.e. the Fiesta and Verna.

Fluidic is definitely missing on handling front and Fiesta is over priced (at least for now).
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