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Old 26th December 2011, 14:18   #1
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Default The new Skoda Fabia 1.6 comes home!

Narrowing Down

The thought of picking up a new car was in my head from March 2011 onwards given that the loan on the Wagon R was closing in April. I was pretty sure on the fact that it was going to be the city , my wife at this point was indifferent! However then came the announcement and more importantly the images of the new Fluidic Verna and the specs and the City became a distant second. We have had Hyundai’s in the family and while I would never argue on the credibility of a Honda engine, the Verna trim levels were simply too good to be ignored especially given the price.

But Alas, the car went into a waiting period as soon as it was launched and I was not keen on making a booking and then hanging around for 4-5 months to get it, so the Wagon R was given a solid servicing and given a length pep talk for addition few months it would be used for. The waiting time for the Verna delivery time period to come down was quite long and It was not till October 2011 that I was finally given a delivery period of 2 weeks by one dealer . During this time the car had been rigorously tested on all facets. Given that our wonderful dealers only allow for 1 km for a test drive , many were taken through multiple dealers to get a feel of the car.

Many sleepless nights were also spent contemplating the decisions given the ‘boatiness’ characteristics as described by many owners on Team BHP , and many sweet dreams were had post reading posts of owners who had dismissed it as not being a deal breaker.

When the delivery time confirmation was finally given, the very same evening I sat down with my wife. Armed with all my calculations, loan EMI scenarios, down payments, brochures I was all set to make a decision – but at this point my wife decided it was time to shift from being indifferent to having a point of view  , and unfortunately a logical point of view

1. There are only 2 of us, why do we need a big car or a massive backseat?

2. So what if it has a big boot , where do we ever need to travel that we need more than 2 suitcases – or are you planning on taking more leave and taking me for more holidays every year?

3. Wouldn’t you rather save some money and instead of getting a wheelbase you won’t utilize fully, get something else for your self – single malts? DSLR’s? Buy me something perhaps…….!


4. You take 2 hours to clean the Wagon R every weekend , now with a car more than double that size are you planning to spend the entire Saturday on the road with a bucket?

5. Actually , if you do have a big car then we can do some holidays with my parents as well

The last reason sealed the decision. The fluidic was not coming home or any car of that size for that matter.
Many weeks of more research followed, Honda Jazz but then Thailand struck, Micra , Grande Punto etc etc and then I started reading a few threads on the Fabia. The more and more I read , the more appealing the car looked , sure it was missing a few things like Audio steering controls , Auto Climate Control , Bluetooth but I never had those on the Wagon R , so I would not miss them , but having said that I did not want to miss out on anything and took a friend’s I20 for a weekend to get a feel for that since that’s what the final contender to the Fabia was in my head.

The I20 had all the above but driving around for 2 days made me realize that the Climate control I would definitely not miss , as long as the car had a great AC it was fine , and the Fabia had one. Steering controls would have been nice but not a deal breaker and Bluetooth – well nothing better than not taking any calls at all while driving! What I realized to a great deal was that the Fabia scored massively on other parameters which I did not know – ride , handling , Torque - things I was more involved in and posts a thumbs up from the Mrs as well we opted for the Fabia.

The next steps were 2 – locate a good dealer (hopefully have a better experience in dealing with Skoda) , and test drives again. Test drives were taken promptly with the dealer sending the car across on a weekend, I test drove the 1.2 which was excellent and then decided to try out the 1.6 as well which was even better , plus with my highway driving ratio I wanted an engine which would not run out of breath and the 1.6 was narrowed – my daily city commute is too little to even consider a diesel and the while there is a lot of highway driving , at the end , the numbers were favored for a petrol variant which is what I took.

Dealers….
With the final TD’s done, I was ready to proceed with the booking. At this point, I read on TBHP as well as heard from the dealers I was in touch with about the upgraded variants coming out , for me on the 1.6 elegance this meant I would get 15 inch alloys , rear washer and rear defogger – and while I would have been fine without them , the fact that the new model was coming out so soon , simply deemed a wait . I informed both dealers to let me know when the new units would be available and what the promotional offer would be (At this point in time, there was a 80,000 cash discount being offered on the existing models, and I was anticipating a drop) , Surprisingly one of the dealers came back and said they would give me the same discount on the new one and could get me the new one in a few days. Needless to say it became a very good deal and I went ahead and booked post having a formal invoice given to me which mentioned the discount as well as the fact that this was a new model – my only problem was that this was a dealer I did not like, very non enthusiastic personalities, low product knowledge and perpetually busy but beggars cant be choosers so the booking was made.

I was promised the VIN number of the car within 3 days of the booking , this was not provided in time and the more I called , the less interest they showed and I finally lost my patience and informed them I was cancelling the booking and decided to go to the other dealer who had impressed me far greater and for whom the only downside was that the delivery date was 3 weeks , but at this point I was happy to sacrifice time to get a sale rep who was more proactive and atleast showed more concern. I went ahead a booked with them the same day and thought this was the end of it ….. but was in wrong.

While more enthusiastic this dealer had their own problems. Despite committing to me on the delivery timeline, they were unable to make a booking in the factory for 5-6 days, reason as per them was that Skoda was not taking bookings for the new model yet, hence I did not get the VIN’s here as well but given my comfort I was happy to wait for a few more days. A few more days went by and still nothing, the delivery date got pushed from 20th of December to 28th with a risk of it spilling over to 2012. At around this time the previous dealer who I had cancelled the booking with called me again with many apologies to offer as well as fresh proposal – an additional discount of 20,000 to reconfirm the booking and delivery within 1 week. Only restriction was that I could choose between Black and Silver only, I was happy with Black and that might have been my first choice anyway. I relayed this info to my other dealer where the booking was active , they were unable to match the additional payout and instead of working out something internally seemed more hell bent of convincing me that this other dealer was lying and would not live upto promises – I was not too concerned as it was on paper and I was anyway taking the delivery timeline with a pinch of salt as was looking at it taking more than a week.

The booking was then reversed again and I went back to the original dealer yelling and screaming (more for my benefit in hindsight) that the better be more proactive. Booking was opened again on 12th December, VIN timelines was 14th and delivery was 18th/19th. The VIN’s finally came on 18th and the car delivery was pushed to 21st and I finally took delivery on the 23rd owing to my own convenience.

The VIN indicated an August/September 2011 manufacturing month which in principle I was ok with given that the 1.6 is produced in batches but just to gauge the knowledge of the dealers and to learn if there was any other reason I did ask them to confirm but never got an answer. The final invoice which I received for the car mentions the month as December 2011 , I don’t really care either way but if anyone reading this has a theory on why the different dates then please do let me know.

Delivery Process
The delivery could have actually taken place as early as 20th December 2011 but the laziness of the dealer was to blame. I had informed them multiple times that I would do a PDI myself before I come for delivery and till I am satisfied with the PDI no money i.e loan , down payment or even the handing over of the Wagon R would be done. The car reached the Faridabad stockyard on 20th morning but the sales guy did not get it moved to the dealership till 21st evening and decided to tell me on 21st itself that the car was there – not enough advance notice to plan around office and work hence could only manage a visit on the 22nd morning. The PDI went off smoothly barring a few small things ( dealer sticker on the car which needed to be removed etc). I informed my bank , ICICI , and confirmed that they could make the payment , they gave me a time frame of 2 PM on 23rd which I informed the dealer and told them to have the car ready by 5 for a pick up.

Taking sometime off from work , we landed up at the dealership by 4:30 , assuming that it would take about an hour or so for the paperwork etc to be done. This took about 2 hours instead owing to them not having certain documents ready, for example I wanted a letter on their letterhead clearly stating that the Wagon R had been handed over and post today I was not responsible for anything which happened with the car, be it an accident or a chalaan. There was some last minute negotiation as well , I had been promised a corporate discount in addition to the 100,000 I had already received , the dealer started telling me that the 1 lac was with the figure not over and above – finally we settled at 50 /50.

The other argument was on the keys handover , the dealer informed me that as per policy they would hand over only 1 key on receipt of the letter from ICICI and the 2nd one would be given once payment was credited. This was clearly something my wife was not keen on compromising on and threatened to delay the delivery upon hearing which they gave in and both keys were handed over.

What I was surprised by was some of the stuff they gave with the car. I was fully expecting to pay a 1000 or so for mud flaps etc but I got the flaps for free, original Skoda mats for free as well as a car cover. They simply informed me that this came with the car, no request for money.

The cleaning of the car was not the best; windshield was smudgy from the inside which one realized once I started driving. I have a temporary number right now, given that we are almost in 2012 the registration of the car will be 2012. I got a box of chocs, some flowers as part of this delivery process and at about 7 30 PM we were back at home with the yet to be named Fabia.

Initial Driving Impressions

Before I start I would like to mention that despite my best efforts I have only been able to drive the car for about 100 Km’s , I am looking at opportunities to sneak out of the house or work but have so far been unable to and hopefully will be able to go for a long drive this weekend!

There is a lot of power in this car but getting to that is a little tricky for me right now. There is a certain amount of play in the accelerator which I have not been able to get used to yet , what this does is allow you to depress the pedal a little but it does not increase the rev’s , go past this and the engine kicks in. If one was to floor it, this would not be a problem but the manual clearly states certain regulations for the first 1500 kms which I am trying to follow – one of them being that one should not floor the accelerator. Multiple times while downshifting over the last few days, or wanting to overtake, I have had a little problem in getting my timing correct because of this but I guess it’s a question of time only and there is clearly a more light foot mindset when its ones own car rather than a test drive car and while the power is there one would not be too hard on the car.

Looking beyond this the engine is very rev happy and will keep on delivering. For me, 2200 RPM appears to be the sweet spot right now, post this there is a surge in power while still being linear in personality which is fine with me, which starts propelling the car to greater speeds very quickly , combine this with the fact that the ride and handling is so good that you feel you are on a lower speed anyway , and there have already been enough surprises in the last 2 days. There have been multiple times I have taken a look at the speedo to realize I was a good 30-35 Kmph over what I thought I was. I have not even got near the speeds which this car appears to be capable of right now , top has only be about 80 KMPH so far , revs have not been taken above 4k – partly owing to traffic as well.

The car felt a little bumpy initially but I was pretty sure that this would be owing to a high tyre pressure and I was right. Pressure in the tyres at the time of the delivery was around 40 and I have brought this down to 33 psi since it’s mostly me alone who is driving the car. The steering is chunky but smooth to operate and the car appears to love being thrown around corners and on my way to work today negotiated many at 40-50 which I would have been doing at half that speed on the Wagon R. No problem whatsoever in getting used to the indicators being on the opposite side nor the way the fog lamps come on (pull the headlight lever for the front ones once , and then once again for the rear). Have not used the wipers or the settings they are offered with so far.

Transmission is mostly smooth, there is a little resistance between 1st and 2nd which I am expecting to go away post some more driving. The throw is a bit long, longer than the Ritz for example but much shorter than what I was used to with the previous car so definitely no issues there.

No rattles, squeaks, clanks etc, the build is solid and one feels that when one is sitting inside. Seats are very comfortable, nicely cushioned and hold you in place decently well. There is some engine noise ( but nice noise) over 2500 RPM or so , It does not bother me one bit really but I did notice that there is no sound dampening pad in the engine bay – there is a slot for it and I have seen photos of Fabia’s with it , might get one at a later stage but I am sure they would be a bit expensive and will decided by and by. Not having a remote fuel lid opener is definitely a pain and I had to practice opening it with the key a few times before I went to fuel up to avoid looking like an *** while there. It took me about 4-5 attempts to get it to open and I should not have a problem now but to avoid will simply fill tankfulls now and reduce this exercise as much as I can. MID is fun, provides a lot of information.

Headlights fine, fog lamps actually appear to be functional in this car rather than simply cosmetic and send out a fair amount of light. Will not be making any changes here, however not entirely happy with the brightness of the reverse light and would have preferred something a little stronger but will not be changing. Music system is to my liking, I will get rear speakers installed as well in the space already defined to give it a bit fuller which will definitely improve it but for now quite content with the clarity and the volume. Aux is easy to use, nothing fancy there; need to get something done in the 12V socket.

Nice big boot, has already come in handy during grocery shopping on Sunday, takes in a fairly large amount. The parcel tray is adjustable by 2 levels which might come in handy. Toolkit, spare tyre all nicely packaged into the space and do not move an inch.

I do have a big concern with the upholstery in the car , the beige provides a fantastic aesthetic appeal but its not going to be easy to keep it clean and i am expecting small patches to start showing up soon. I am being very disciplined so far in not keeping anything on the seats , such as my laptop bag but at the end of the day there is little which can be done to prevent the Delhi dust from coming in.

I have not sat in the rear seat so cannot really comment on that except to say that there is ample leg room , the high transmission tunnel is a bit of a pain but given that i will almost never find myself at the back its not a concern of any great manner.

Lastly i wish to extend a great deal of appreciation to Sraye , Rajcs , Shivir and Deepfusion for all their help and patiently replying to my many PM's over the last few weeks and getting me an insight into the car and the dealers etc which prepared me better.
Attached Thumbnails
The new Skoda Fabia 1.6 comes home!-img00189201112251723.jpg  

The new Skoda Fabia 1.6 comes home!-img00191201112251816.jpg  


Last edited by puchoo : 29th December 2011 at 12:41.
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Old 26th December 2011, 14:37   #2
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Default Re: The new Fabia 1.6 comes home!

Congrats on the buy!

Please note that the number your car bears at the moment is not a temp. regn. number but a 'Trade Certificate' number which is meant for dealers' use only. I would avoid driving around town without a permanent registration number, as cops could stop and harass/extort money due to this fact.

Last edited by Puneet.S : 26th December 2011 at 14:38.
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Old 26th December 2011, 14:39   #3
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Default Re: The new Fabia 1.6 comes home!

Thanks Puneet , yes i do know the nature of the number and the car is not being driven around too much right now , simply office and back home and a little bit in the colony so have that in mind!


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Congrats on the buy!

Please note that the number your car bears at the moment is not a temp. regn. number but a 'Trade Certificate' number which is meant for dealers' use only. I would avoid driving around town without a permanent registration number, as cops could stop and harass/extort money due to this fact.
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Old 26th December 2011, 14:39   #4
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Default Re: The new Fabia 1.6 comes home!

Congrats on owning the Fabia 1.6!

Upload more pics as you go along. Wishing you safe and happy ownership of the same.

Cheers!
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Old 26th December 2011, 14:46   #5
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Default Re: The new Fabia 1.6 comes home!

Quote:
Originally Posted by puchoo View Post
Thanks Puneet , yes i do know the nature of the number and the car is not being driven around too much right now , simply office and back home and a little bit in the colony so have that in mind!
Great then! Please share the OTR cost of your Fab. Infact, a little OT though, owning a 'hot hatch' is on my wishlist; nice tranistion from the Waggie to 1.6!
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Old 26th December 2011, 14:59   #6
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Default Re: The new Fabia 1.6 comes home!

OTR as below

Ex including everything was working out to 705,000

Less discount of 100,000
Less corp discount of 2500
Less insurance 7000
( i got the dealer to reduce the premium on the basis that otherwise i would get it done on my own which would be far cheaper)

Final OTR - 596,000

For me obviously there was an additional reduction on this owing to the Wagon R.


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Originally Posted by Puneet.S View Post
Great then! Please share the OTR cost of your Fab. Infact, a little OT though, owning a 'hot hatch' is on my wishlist; nice tranistion from the Waggie to 1.6!
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Old 26th December 2011, 15:13   #7
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Default Re: The new Fabia 1.6 comes home!

Welcome to DA FAB CLUB, my friend!

I'd love to see those 15 alloys BTW.

Some tips:
1. Try sticking to one brand of trusted fuel, preferably SHELL (normal).

2. DO not mess with the ICE unless you have dealer consent for fear of losing electrical warranty.

3. For the initial 1000kms, keep a close watch on engine oil levels, coolant levels and brake fluid levels. I won't talk about run-in/break-in cos that's debatable and you can choose what you like though I'd prefer the former.

Lastly, MANY THANKS to rajcs and shivir again for helping me through too to make this decision earlier thisyear. And boy! Have I been smiling all time while driving.. hehe.
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Old 26th December 2011, 15:13   #8
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Default Re: The new Fabia 1.6 comes home!

Hey good to see you got the ride. Congratulations and have fund driving it around. Im nearing first service in a couple of days and will give you a run down on how it goes once done.
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Old 26th December 2011, 15:26   #9
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Default Re: The new Fabia 1.6 comes home!

Thanks!! The former being ?

Will keep a close watch on those items definitely and no i dont plan on doing anything with the electricals without due process , no way am i going to risk having any kind of am impact on the warranty.


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Originally Posted by mempheS.D View Post
Welcome to DA FAB CLUB, my friend!

I'd love to see those 15 alloys BTW.

Some tips:
1. Try sticking to one brand of trusted fuel, preferably SHELL (normal).

2. DO not mess with the ICE unless you have dealer consent for fear of losing electrical warranty.

3. For the initial 1000kms, keep a close watch on engine oil levels, coolant levels and brake fluid levels. I won't talk about run-in/break-in cos that's debatable and you can choose what you like though I'd prefer the former.

Lastly, MANY THANKS to rajcs and shivir again for helping me through too to make this decision earlier thisyear. And boy! Have I been smiling all time while driving.. hehe.
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Old 29th December 2011, 12:48   #10
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Default Re: The new Skoda Fabia 1.6 comes home!

Thread moved from http://www.team-bhp.com/forum/announ...m-section.html (The "Assembly Line" Forum section)

Thanks for Sharing.
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Old 29th December 2011, 13:19   #11
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Default Re: The new Skoda Fabia 1.6 comes home!

Congrats on the purchase, and welcome to the club!! Thats a fantastic deal you got yourself.

The car gets better over time. In less than 2 months I have covered 3k, and it feels much smoother. Btw, did you finally install the driver arm rest?

More pics please. Ek se dil nahi bhaara!!

Last edited by sraye : 29th December 2011 at 13:20.
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Old 29th December 2011, 13:26   #12
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Default Re: The new Skoda Fabia 1.6 comes home!

Thanks!!

Waiting for the weekend for the photograph session!!

No arm rest yet , i am in 2 minds now whether i should or should not. The ones i have found require some drilling to be done for the base into the transmission tunnel and i am not too keen on that plus this would be a third part fit anyway , so will decided by and by , dont miss it to be honest yet so not in any real hurry .


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Originally Posted by sraye View Post
Congrats on the purchase, and welcome to the club!! Thats a fantastic deal you got yourself.

The car gets better over time. In less than 2 months I have covered 3k, and it feels much smoother. Btw, did you finally install the driver arm rest?

More pics please. Ek se dil nahi bhaara!!
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Old 29th December 2011, 14:05   #13
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Default Re: The new Skoda Fabia 1.6 comes home!

Quote:
Originally Posted by puchoo View Post
Thanks!!

Waiting for the weekend for the photograph session!!

No arm rest yet , i am in 2 minds now whether i should or should not. The ones i have found require some drilling to be done for the base into the transmission tunnel and i am not too keen on that plus this would be a third part fit anyway , so will decided by and by , dont miss it to be honest yet so not in any real hurry .
As for the armrest, the wiser option would be to get it done from Skoda itself although it comes at a price. They do have it listed in the additional accessories section, but that's at a price. I plan on getting that one during the first service which is still about roughly 3500kms away. But, yes, an armrest is a must-need for those long relaxo collio drive-O.
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Old 29th December 2011, 14:38   #14
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Default Re: The new Skoda Fabia 1.6 comes home!

I have seen it listed as well but my dealer was not too clued on about it , i believe its in the region of 12,000 INR if i recall correctly.


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Originally Posted by mempheS.D View Post
As for the armrest, the wiser option would be to get it done from Skoda itself although it comes at a price. They do have it listed in the additional accessories section, but that's at a price. I plan on getting that one during the first service which is still about roughly 3500kms away. But, yes, an armrest is a must-need for those long relaxo collio drive-O.
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Old 29th December 2011, 14:41   #15
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Default Re: The new Skoda Fabia 1.6 comes home!

Congratulations on your new car, The Fabia is an excellent car, and would have loved to consider buying it, if not for the horror stories about Skoda's after sales.

Wish you many miles of driving pleasure.
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