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Old 21st December 2011, 12:15   #16
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Default Re: To buy or not to buy a T Jet+. NOW BOUGHT.

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Originally Posted by hemanth.anand View Post
the noise of air is actually not any leakage but it is from the mirror.
Finding this a little hard to digest. So much noise manages to filter in to the cabin?

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Originally Posted by rikhav View Post
This is if i am correct that you are the same person

You bought a Fiat and I have almost decided to sell my Petra. Original spares are getting really costly and that made think is it a good option to keep the car and spend money on overhauling the suspension and the engine belts
Yes, I am the same person. I am mostly a silent member on hi fi vision.

You might want to sell the Petra unless there is a reliable source who can fix the car. It is not worth over spending on a car that is not going to keep you happy for very long. I made this mistake and would highly suggest not spending too much on the car. It ain't worth.

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Originally Posted by Speed Pujari View Post
You can change the default volume from audio setting menu.
Thank god. Is this to be done on the head unit or in My Car? I will read the manual. A quick browse did not talk about this or maybe I missed it.


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Originally Posted by Speed Pujari View Post
If u really want to feel the biological precision in this car switch to FULL AUTO, override the blower to speed to say 2 bars. It feels like home.
Will try this.

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Originally Posted by Speed Pujari View Post
LOL! .. Happy doing it on Jet.. You are sounding like me when I bought my car a year back.
No I really want to bed in the car well. I know it will drive me nuts. At the same time the car was not exactly bought on chump change so I don't want to wreak anything on it.

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Originally Posted by Speed Pujari View Post
We can meet someday.
A very small number for what is such an awesome automobile. Wish they were more. Heck, even this small number makes us a very unique clan of Fiat owners.
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Old 21st December 2011, 13:15   #17
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Default Re: To buy or not to buy a T Jet+. NOW BOUGHT.

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Originally Posted by sandeepmohan View Post
Finding this a little hard to digest. So much noise manages to filter in to the cabin?
Yes. This is an issue with all T-Jets and if you can hear it you're typically at or around 60-65km/h, well above most city speed limits. So much for bedding it in, eh?

You can change the default volume setting from the My Car settings while the car is stationary.

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No I really want to bed in the car well. I know it will drive me nuts. At the same time the car was not exactly bought on chump change so I don't want to wreak anything on it.
You do not have to worry. I took it a little easy for the first 400km, and even up to now have only given max power for short durations (<5min). A few runs to 4-4.5k will not be an issue as long as you don't do it for too long. It is good to cycle the engine a bit.

The one thing you do need to watch out for is duration. I wouldn't take it on a long highway drive with constant speeds, longer than an hour or so - at which point you should give it a break.

Also the stories about the car freeing up after 4-5k kms are totally true. You have to drive it to believe it - a lot of this is due to the brakes and all the pedal return springs freeing up, the car is really a lot more fun to drive.

As long as you don't continuously rev hard you will be fine. The engine is nice and solid - the only weak points of the car are plastics (apparently, as I have specific issues) and rattling (which I have lots of thanks to the roads in this part of the country).

The T-Jet does not sell very well. Not sure if that's a bad thing actually.
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Old 21st December 2011, 19:24   #18
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Default Re: To buy or not to buy a T Jet+. NOW BOUGHT.

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Originally Posted by sandeepmohan View Post
Yes, I am the same person. I am mostly a silent member on hi fi vision.

You might want to sell the Petra unless there is a reliable source who can fix the car. It is not worth over spending on a car that is not going to keep you happy for very long. I made this mistake and would highly suggest not spending too much on the car. It ain't worth.

Hi Sandeep
I am in contact with garages who can work on the car well but problem is with the spares
One very trusted garage in Mumbai suggested me when the prices of original spares are so high, its no point spending on the car when you are not sure for how long you will get the spares.
Yeah, there are shops which can sell me China made suspension parts but I am not interested in going for such parts

With Prerna you have one rare Fiat A.S.S. which should hopefully service your car well
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Old 21st December 2011, 19:39   #19
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Default Re: To buy or not to buy a T Jet+. NOW BOUGHT.

Congratulations on your civilian jet, Sandeep

Now that you've brought home your love, I'm looking forward for your ownership log. Do keep us updated or rather entertained.

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Originally Posted by rikhav View Post
Yeah, there are shops which can sell me China made suspension parts but I am not interested in going for such parts
My friend, any particular reason for NOT going for the Chinese parts? FYI, Fiat had sold Fiat Palio & Fiat Perla (Chinese version of Fiat Petra) in China.
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Old 21st December 2011, 20:27   #20
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Default Re: To buy or not to buy a T Jet+. NOW BOUGHT.

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My friend, any particular reason for NOT going for the Chinese parts? FYI, Fiat had sold Fiat Palio & Fiat Perla (Chinese version of Fiat Petra) in China.
The parts I am talking about are made by some random manufacturer in China. I would have no problems using parts made by Fiat China

All palio parts available through A.S.S. are MADE IN BRAZIL
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Old 29th December 2011, 15:14   #21
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Default Re: Fiat Linea T-Jet : The Poor Man's Ultimate Driving Machine

Note from Mod : Ownership Review Posts have been moved to a new thread. Thanks for sharing!
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Old 24th January 2012, 20:57   #22
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Default Christmas vacation and Car report

The yearly Christmas vacation is what everyone looks forward to at my work spot. We get a good one week off leading to New Years. I had not taken a long break during any part of 2011 so I decided to put in an additional week off from the 17th December 2011. My prayers were answered as I got my leave approved well ahead. This went a long way as I could book cheap flight ticket to Delhi and back. This was needed as I had to visit Chandigarh, where my wife is from, return to Bangalore and drive to Cochin, my home town. My wife left for Chandigarh with our one month old son just a month after he was born. The plan was to leave on the 17th December 2011 for Chandigarh, return on 22nd with my wife and son and leave for Cochin on 23rd morning. The Chandigarh phase of the trip went well. The fog did cause some havoc. A delay of nearly two hours was the max I had to deal with both ways. Two hours is still a lot, heck, I’ve been reading five hours more recently. I have to say that Chandigarh sure ranks as the top city for die hard Enfield lovers; more than all of Kerala.

The weather in Chandigarh was cold, at least for me. Temperature’s in Bangalore around the 17th weekend was bearable. I remember leaving a small gap in the window of my cab on the early morning drive to Devanahalli (Bangalore ) Airport. This drive was at 4am in the morning as I had to catch a 635am flight. I always try to make departures a relaxing affair. It saves the airline time, you help other passengers by not being late and there is a lot less hassle at the air line counters and security checks. I was in for a not so nice surprise. The roads leading to Bangalore Airport was buzzing with cabs clipping to the airport. Then I had to deal with a sleepy Roman Taxi driver who was struggling to stay awake at the wheel. I never said anything. For a Bangalore cab, I was actually surprised to find him calling me at 4am saying he was outside my apartment gate. I was actually late. Upon reaching the airport, there was just chaos and this is at 5am. There was some renovation work going on to the existing entry for cars so everything was diverted to another parallel entry. It was literally a traffic jam at the airport.Bumper to bumper cars and mini vans crawling to the drop point for passengers. The airport itself was quite busy considering the time.The usual ten members of a family to send one person off causing most of the madness. Check-in counters were not so bad, but I had to stand in a quarter mile long queue for security check. After boarding the flight it was announced that we could not take off due to poor visibility and it was quite bad. I could not see more than 100 meters out of the airplane window. Departure was finally at 815am. It was a painful wait. I was looking forward to see my wife and 2 month old son and the excitement of this is something you can’t describe. I don’t like traveling to Chandigarh as no matter what you do, it is a day long journey even if done by air all the way. I had planned on catching a state transport Volvo to Chandigarh from Delhi. Landing in Delhi was without any further delay. Visibility was good but I could feel the chill in the air even at 1030am when I got off the aircraft. I took a local airport bus service to Kashmir Gate bus terminal. Once you see this terminal, you will stop complaining about how bad the Majestic bus terminal in Bangalore is. The Kashmir Gate bus terminal is nothing but a garbage dump. The journey from the airport to Kashmir gate was nice. Roads in Delhi, at least the one from the airport to the bus terminal is awesome. Nice, wide, well paved roads and not a single speed breaker. My bus was also quite interesting, a low floor Air Conditioned Ashok Leyland Automatic. Never knew they made these and I do not know why we don’t have them in Bangalore when the factory is just an hour away. During the planning of this trip, I wanted to take the Airport Metro but it did not make much sense. The airport metro is only from terminal three and then I had to change trains at New Delhi to the normal metro service. The metro seems to be all over Delhi. The quality of construction and overall planning appears a lot better than Bangalore. 9 years and nearly 190km is what Delhi has as a metro. Bangalore has about 7km that took a good 4 years to build and what we have built is not even half as good as Delhi metro. I would attribute this to the ridiculous amount of corruption in Karnataka. I am sure the state ranks number one in India by now. The Bangalore metro does not really serve anyone, except for the folks living in Byapanahalli and Indira Nagar which is like one km apart.

Anyways that’s that. I got a battered state transport Volvo bus for the road trip to Chandigarh.Filthy on the outside and nearly as bad on the inside. It was an awful 6 hour journey with one break. There was some entertainment on board with a movie called Singham. I never knew Ajay Devgan can act. A watchable movie with a lot of Rajani stunts in the action and the way they blow things up. We lost a lot of time entering Chandigarh due to weekend traffic. We finally pulled into Chandigarh bus terminal in sector seventeen at 7pm which looked like heaven compared to Kashmir Gate in Delhi. My wife had come to receive me. We walked towards the car where I my father in law was waiting with our little boy. I was thrilled to see him. He was asleep but I was just so happy to hold him. We went home, had dinner and it was lights out for me. I had no energy left. I was in Chandigarh from 17th – 22nd morning. During this time we visited an over crowded Sukhna Lake, went to Paal Dhabba and did a few visits. I have seen the rock garden during my past visits. Chandigarh is a beautiful little city and they have managed to maintain it. I do see some things getting ruined but it is not going out of control. Some of the original plan rules are still respected and followed. Nice wide well paved roads, a dedicated path for cyclists and walkers, a beautiful green blanket within the city so you don’t really feel the pollution levels and there is some discipline to traffic. Otherwise, Chandigarh gets to bed early and wakes up at a decent hour.

22nd arrived in a blink and we were set to leave for Delhi by cab. A battered Tata Indica V2. The drive was without event except for some electricals packing up on our cab which caused all the clocks to go dead. Our cab driver could not turn off the car too as the starter motor would not function. So he left it idling during our one hour long pit stop. On the drive back I noticed a lot of buildings beside the free way. They were supposed to be resorts. The north seems to have a different idea of what a resort is supposed to be. We entered Delhi at around 3pm. I know nothing about Delhi. Once again, the wide roads, the criss crossing of the metro lines at several points left me very impressed. It makes Bangalore’s MG Road look like a lane. 3 full width MG Roads from Bangalore glued together make for one side of some major city roads in New Delhi. That’s how wide they are. The road leading to the domestic terminal at the airport was a lot nicer than what I had experienced in Bangalore.Lots of room to park. We checked in our luggage, got our boarding passes and it was time for another long wait. Our flight was once again delayed. Lift off was only around 730pm. It was a boring flight. My wife and I were hungry and we had no choice but to blow three hundred bucks on a sandwich. Our son just slept and slept. All he needed was a feed in between and then he would switch to snooze mode. Thank god he takes to traveling without any trouble.

My views on air travel. I love it and I love it even more as we now have something called cheap air fares. It is actually affordable. I love traveling by rail. It is my all time favorite mode of transport. I just do not have the time for it anymore. There is one problem though with cheap air fares. You get the scum from the land flying as well.The kind of people who have absolutely no etiquette. They stand on the seats, argue with fellow passengers for little things that can be ignored, fool around with the hostess and then there is a phone call that they must make or receive with both the ringer volume and the person’s volume set at two hundred percent. We need a different class for such people on the air craft. I would call it cattle class. I apologize if this has offended anyone. This is a real problem.

We landed in Bangalore at quarter past ten at night. I do not know what it is with Bangalore Airport, it takes forever to receive your checked in baggage. We wasted nearly half an hour to get our bags. Then we had to deal with a long line for the airport cab service. We got a KSTDC Renault Logan. It was a very comfortable journey. The Logan is a nice car. If only they could do something about the way it looks. I don’t mind its looks but then, it is also a car I would not buy for personal use. It has way more space at the back than my Fiat. The diesel engine is quiet and very smooth. We were doing around 90 clicks and I could not hear a thing inside the cabin. I also feel a Logan is better put together than a Tata Indigo. They are both cheap cars but the Logan does not scream cheap as much as a Tata. We reached home at around 1115pm and went to bed almost immediately. We were so tired. I did hint to my wife that we must try and leave at 9am for Cochin. Cochin is not exactly a great drive. Past Avinashi and closing in on Coimbatore, the free way ends and it is 80% single carriage way there on, all the way to Cochin. The roads are not very safe and there is a bad p atch leading up to Trichur when traveling from Palghat. We had anyways decided to stop for the night at my uncle’s place in Palghat but I wanted to get there early evening so we can spend the evening with my uncle and then get a good nights rest.

The plan to leave at 9am went out of the window. We did get up at 7am but had a lot of little odds and ends to do. Had a power bill to pay which was a week to the due date, had to quickly run to my friends place to grab my tripod, my wife had to re do all the packing and prepare the baby at the same time. We had to pit stop at Prerana to collect the Road Tax Invoice, get the number plate fixed and collect the stamped extended warranty. To my surprise, the smart card registration arrived at my residence address in just a week from registering the car. I was told 3 weeks was the minimum. It is no longer a book. More a little credit card thing with a micro chip. Very recently, the Bangalore edition of the Times of India reported that the smart card does not work and the embedded micro chip has no information on anything. Be is a license or a smart card for the car’s registration. The road tax office still issues the same thing. We finally managed to leave home only by 1230pm and were out of Prerana by around 2pm. Very late to be leaving Bangalore for a road trip to Palghat. Prerana was ready for me. I had been in touch with Mr. Praveen at Prerana even when I was in Chandigarh so he knew when I would be coming to the showroom. Mr. Praveen was the gentleman responsible for my business. Though I barged in at their lunch time, I was attended to immediately. Mr. Sathish, who takes care of pre delivery inspection was also there. The number plate was fixed in under a minute. Sadly, they had to drill a screw into the bumper as the Linea has no provision to fix the number plate. Prerana took no more than 5 minutes of my time and I was good to go.

Getting out of Bangalore even at 2pm was bad. There is no such thing as peak hour time in Bangalore. It is always peak hour. It felt good to be back in the car. I took delivery of the car on 15th December and then left for Chandigarh on 17th. In this little time frame, I drove the car for just 100km so I never really spent any time with it. It had that nice new car smell and I did manage to find a sweet spot driving position.Most have a tough time getting adjusted or finding the correct seat adjustment on new Fiats. This is indeed true as it wasn’t exactly my comfort zone when I first took the wheel. I did fiddle with the seat and steering height quite a bit. All of this was not required on my previous car, a Ford Ikon. I would still rate the driving position on a Ford to be spot on perfect. I checked this even on the new Fiesta. The odo meter was reading H 191km and I wanted to video the H on the odo going off. Holding the camera and driving was not s safe thing to do so I took 2 still pictures of the odo meter with H displayed and without it. Progress was a little faster once we hit hosur road. We just do not have the ability to build anything right. On Hosur road, there is a little under pass leading to silk board flyover, it is so horribly built that you can’t really cross 30 kmph. Any faster and you will be bouncing all over the place. The road appears level but it is far from it. You have to slow down to a crawl for the drainage vents in the middle of this under pass as it is so uneven. The surface of the road on silk board bridge is also very uneven and with the T Jets suspension tuned for firmer ride, it is not very comfortable. Once past this, things are okay. I did not take the electronic city elevated bridge. I drove under it and I am so glad I did. Yes, I did get caught at 3 signals but none of them were long stops. At the end, I saw a long queue of cars waiting to pay toll for using the elevated stretch. Rs. 35 is what I recall paying a year ago to use a 9km stretch of road. Ridiculous if you ask me. Yes, the elevated stretch is very well made and can cut down travel time but not by much during non peak hour. The road under it is nearly as good. The traffic police have placed speeding barricades at several locations. It is placed in such a way that just one bus or car can go through it. The road can accommodate 3 lanes of bus traffic and it narrows down to just one where the barricades are placed. This is dangerous. Going by the way 98% of drivers in India are taught how to drive, we forget about something called courtesy to fellow motorists on the road so in situations where you have these stupid barricades, you have just about every mode road transport gunning for that centre passage and this can lead to a bad accident.

The drive on the free way was quite involving buy annoying at the same time. My car had clocked just 200km on the odo and I wanted to bed in the engine well. I had set a speed alarm for 105Kmph but kept hitting it ever so often. The higher variant Grande Punto and Linea cars come with something called MyCar. You can customize certain settings for the car and that’s where the speed alarm can be set. In a way this was good. I drive slower and safer. 100Kmph is the safest maximum speed for our freeways. The involvement was due to the fact that the free way to Hosur, Krishnagiri and so on leading to Avinashi had considerable traffic so I was darting my way around over taking slower moving vehicles without reducing speed. I am not much of a horn person. If you don’t give me way, I will just over take from the left. These rules mean nothing in India. This is when you feel the sheer brilliance of the Linea’s T Jets chassis. This car has to be the most rewarding to drive in its segment. You feel safe and confident of what ever it is you tell the car to do. It communicates like no other. The steering feed back has to be the best in its segment. You know precisely what is happening at the front wheels. Couple this with a nice suspension and you have a handling package that is spot on perfect. I can go on and on about the way the car behaves on the road. The annoying aspect about the drive was getting over taken by just about everyone. No scope to show off the potential of the Linea turbo charged petrol engine.

Before starting the drive, I did pair up my phone with Blue N Me. This feature can make a world of a difference once you get the hang of it. Getting a hang of it does not take much time. The manual describes everything about Blue N Me and is all you need. But yeah, you do need to read the book a couple of times to fully understand how everything works. For the folks who do not know what Blue N Me is, this is a Fiat and Microsoft co developed communications and entertainment system for Fiat cars. You can control the system over voice or use the controls on the steering wheel. All you need is to pair your phone once with the system. Once you are done with this, all you need to do is walk in to the car with blue tooth enabled and the rest happens automatically. I use a relic Sony Ericsson K750i. If this phone can work without a hitch, I am sure the newer generation phones will be even better. The phone I have is fully compatible with Blue N Me. The Blue N Me user manual includes a list of phones that have been tested and approved by the system. I did not see any Androids listed but I am sure they will work.. Blue N Me takes care of digital music playback and what surprised me the most was support for WAV format. You need to setup a few things so that it does not annoy you. Auto Play for one was highly annoying. With this enabled by default on a new car, the stereo turns on each time you turn on the ignition. I disabled Auto Play in My Car Setting but have on a couple of rare occasions seen the system power up during a crank. This is a software flaw. Then there is the voice of the Blue N Me system that is set too loud. The default phone ringing buzzer is also very loud. The volume of the entire Blue N Me system has to be set on the main head unit. At this point you wonder why this was not part of Blue N Me Settings. There is a sense of disconnect. Ideally, Blue N Me should have the volume setting too but it does not. At times you feel the head unit integrates with Blue N Me and then there are times it does not. You can turn off music by holding down the volume knob on the head unit or just announce “Stop” and Blue N Me will kill the stereo. Pretty cool eeh. I prefer saying “Stop”. Hit the Microsoft logo key on the steering controls and say “Play Anything” and your music is back. Blue N Me can also read out an sms and I have used this to the max when I see that the message is from someone I know. The good thing is Blue N Me will ask you before reading out the sms. Just say “Yes” or “No”. You get information about who sent the sms on the multi information display or MID housed between the dials. The system works well for phone calls too. You can hit the ESC key on the steering to silence the ring for an incoming call. Person calling is displayed on the MID. You can send out a voice command to Blue N Me to make a call. You can call out the number by each digit or just call out a name. If you have multiple phone number entries stored in one name, Blue N Me will call out the other stored categories and ask you which you would like to call. The system is not friendly with Indian names. The system is actually not friendly with many things. You can call out “Artists” or “Folders” and the MID will display a list all folders or artists present on your thumb drive. Using the steering controls, you can browse through the thumb drive in alphabetical order as well. I have yet to have success with those two words though, Folders and Artists. I kept the door open while discovering the system and there was some ambient noise. Will test more and update. It will be so cool if it works.

I have to admit that the stereo is just average. I had earlier rated it as more than enough and on par with stock stereos on Ford and Honda. It is not. When the car is just standing without the engine running it sounds fantastic. You can actually hear all the nuances and frequencies of the music. Not when the car is running. All the frequencies and clarity vanish and no matter how much you try to equalize the sound on the head unit to compensate for road noise, they make no difference. The controls feel as if they are dummy. There is a change heard only when the car is standing still without the engine running. A speaker upgrade is the first plan of action. I have a pair of Blaupunkt Velocity components just sitting in the loft. On reading the car manual, there is a mention of a fuse meant for a sub woofer in the fuse box. I know the car has no sub woofer but the presence or rather a provision of a fuse slot gives me some hope of integrating an external car audio amplifier which I also have sitting in the loft. I kinda hate Fiat for not including the sub woofer. I know that with the present capability of the system, a sub woofer is not the end all solution. With a sub, existing speakers and amplification, all you will hear is the sub.

Getting back to the road. Freeways have made a world of a difference in the way we travel. Sadly, we are not educated at all on how to use it or manage one. I saw an empty truck barreling down the wrong side of the highway, people crossing at points you would never see them. To an extent I blame National Highway Authorities of India for this. For people to cross safely and not run on the wrong side, the NHAI should have built small under passes, a pedestrian bridge or some alternate solution for people to get across the highway. Building a highway is good but you need to take care of the local folk as well and not just the people using the road. I also feel the toll charges are ridiculous. A one way trip to Cochin cost me Rs. 311 for 300kms. It is about time toll gates introduced a system where you need buy just one toll ticket for the entire trip and just show it at other toll booths. This way, you do not waste time stopping, hunting for change, etc. God help you if you end up at these toll booths on a weekend. Last years trip to Cochin was hell at all the toll booths. I was queued up in a line of no less than 5 vehicles, 10 in some toll booths. When you are charging so much you need to provide some benefit for the person paying.

Speed brakers are no longer there on the thopur ghat section. This is a good and bad move. Good because the folks who know how to drive well will enjoy some of the sharp turns. Bad because trucks and bus drivers get a little over confident and then loose it entirely killing or injuring a few in the process. Dumping their load on the highway and making a bigger mess of it is another thing.

We were at Salem by pass by around 6pm and it was a traffic jam. We went into Salem looking for a place to eat but wasted time and in the end we just returned to the highway. The two round abouts on salem bypass need to go and bridges need to come into place. Removing those rounds alone will help. On the return journey, we were stuck here for a good half an hour. We continued towards Coimbatore and then stopped at a way side joint. They made nice Chinese fried rice and were kind enough to heat up my son’s feeding bottle in the micro wave. I like the Tamil folk. They seem more accommodating than the folks in Karnataka.

My wife and son were on the back seat for the entire trip. The Linea is large on the outside but not so on the inside. There are lots of small slots available to hold stuff but none of them can actually hold the things you really want. Chocolate bars, biscuit packets, fuel receipts, highway toll receipts, a face towel, cd jewel cases (who carry’s them today) and a cell phone are probably the only things the available cubby holes will hold. A good friend and colleague was very happy when he found the door storage can hold his Samsung Note. The Team bhp review was spot on about the fact that you just cannot store a water bottle anywhere. I do like the rubber matting inside the centre arm rest storage bin and under the parking brake. The glove box is cramped too. With just the spare bulbs, medical kit, car manual and helpline booklet, it is full. The Ikon glove box could take in a box of face tissues, a small torch, a tire pressure gauge and there was still room for some more. The boot is huge and can hold a lot. I knew this before buying the car. Space management is very poor on the inside. With me on the driver seat, it is possible to fit an adult at the back but not for long due to very limited leg room. The leather seats are excellent and provide very good support. Long drives are a lot less tiring if I were to compare it to my old Ikon. External noise is well controlled and I felt this when we were on the horrible Avinashi – walayar stretch. This patch is still a long way off from being a decent highway. As of now it is a single carriage way road. Blaring bus horns were muted to a good extent. My wife and son were having a nice long snooze at the back. The Air Conditioning is excellent on my Fiat. The weather outside did not allow a good enough test due to winter months but it was a sure test in Cochin’s hot and humid weather which was strange for Christmas time. The car was registering 35 degree centigrade on the outside and the air conditioning was set at 23. Humidity felt high too. Something like 85% is what I thought. There was no huffing and puffing of the system. It cooled fast and after this the fan speed dropped to a very quiet level. The system maintained a very comfortable cabin temperature. My car has no tints too so that’s saying something about the improved air conditioning in the T Jet.

The drive on the avinashi walayar stretch was horrible. The sun had already set and I was finding it difficult to deal with all the high beam head lights from the opposite direction. The Linea has good head lights. It can be bettered though. However, for something stock, those twin barrel head lamps do provide a nice spread of light Diversions were all over the place on this patch. It was impossible to maintain any speed. We finally pulled into my uncle’s house in Palghat only at 1015pm. We were very tired. We had dinner and hit the sack almost immediately. We had to resume our journey the next morning to Cochin. We decided to take it easy. We left Palghat only by 12pm. The surprise was we were in cochin by 245pm. Quite quick. Can be a lot quicker if the stupid Kerala government knew how to build and maintain roads. The last 40 km leading to Trichur by pass is full of tar top ups on all pot holes so your basically dancing all over the place. The stiff ride on my Fiat did not help matters. The suspension on this car is excellent but not so nice if the road gets really bad. I could have steam rolled all the bumps but then I would be destroying my brand new car. Not to forget, my wife and son were at the back so I had to take it easy. From Trichur bypass, you have a free way fully built to ernakulam. Yes, this is finally complete. It is only a matter of time before they start taking toll on this stretch. A mock drill was in place when I passed the toll booth. It felt good to be home after a year. I love the house my dad built for us. It feels like a house unlike many who call an apartment a house. To me, an apartment is a jail house and it is unfortunate that this is all I can afford to rent in Bangalore. I hate it but don’t have a choice.

Before heading out to Cochin from Palghat, I had to tank up. I did fill up my car as soon as I took delivery. The car had run just 100km within Bangalore city. The tank was no longer full when we started our journey from Bangalore. I got a low fuel warning alert on the Coimbatore by pass and kept pushing the car as I did not want to tank up anywhere but in Palghat suspecting poor quality fuel on the highway. The car made it easily to my uncle’s house. Between this I received another two low fuel warning messages on the MID but the fuel gauge needle was still sitting above E. Topped up the tank the next morning at the Indian oil pump in chandranagar. It is a pump I know and have filled my Ford in the past and had no trouble. Gas in Palghat is a good Rs. 7 cheaper than Bangalore. I noticed a drop in power after doing the second tank full. I am aware that it is not good practice to run the tank close to dry but even still, this drop in power should not have happened. I have topped up the car twice after this and there is no improvement in power. The rush of the engine building revs and the surge of the turbo is missing a little. Previously, you could feel the turbo spool up and the rush of power coming in as low as 1800 rpm. It is not the same now. You feel the real pull of the turbo only past 2400rpm. There were several occasions where it made me think the turbo has blown but it has not. I can hear the turbo whistle. It is very feeble but can be heard. Something does not feel right. I can feel the engine vibrate a little every few seconds when the car is left idle without the air conditioning running. It is a very small amount of vibration but can be felt. When in cochin and during the course of our stay I popped the bonnet to check if the vibration can be seen on the engine and I could. It is ever so slight but it is there. I suspect a clogged fuel rail or injector. I did take the car to Prerana last weekend. They can’t find anything wrong. They plugged in the scanner as well and everything looked good. I don’t really know how to deal with this problem. In all the noise and chaos at Prerana’s Kudlu gate workshop, it was actually impossible to detect this vibration. They told me not to worry and if there was anything wrong at all, the car’s systems would detect this and indicate. I am going to try higher octane fuel such as Indian Oil’s Premium and Shell Super to see if it helps. The manual does say the car needs 91ron fuel. Even still, my first tank full was standard Indian Oil gas and the car ran well.

Another incredible feature in the Linea T Jet is My Car. Several convenience features can be programmed in My Car. Speed Alarm, Auto Close of the doors, Passenger side Air bag on or off are just a few of the features I have meddled with.

Our days in Cochin went by in a flash. We did not really do much. Just being home felt good. Mum made lots of sea food and we enjoyed a nice baked duck preparation for Christmas lunch. We hired a boat and went for a little tour of all the islands that surround Ernakulam. The vallarpadam container terminal is quite a sight. It was the first time I was seeing one so up close. I am sure there are much bigger terminals in other parts of the world. We also saw the Amet Cruises ship anchored near the Taj Malabar. Our personal boat cost us Rs. 700 an hour. If you are a bigger group, this costs nothing. It costs nothing otherwise too considering the experience. Cochin was unusually warm for Christmas time. Mornings had a little chill but the sun would be out in full force by noon. 30th December came in a flash and it was time to drive back to Bangalore. We wanted to drive before new years for a couple of reasons. The house needed a clean up, I hate doing a long drive on Sunday to be back to work on Mondays. Any drive that’s over 500km needs a day break in between before you head to work. It is just my way. One other reason to leave Cochin early was to avoid the mad rush at the toll gates on 1st Sunday 2012. This was a good call. Except for the long traffic jam at Salem by pass, we never got stuck at any toll gate on 30th. This time around, we did not stay over at my uncle’s place in Palghat. Instead, we did a lunch pit stop at my uncle’s. We resumed journey at 3pm and were in Bangalore by 1130pm. We left cochin at 1015am. Were in Palghat at 1240pm. Overall, I think we still did good time. We stopped just once after Palghat. This was at the Bharat Petroleum pump after Thoppur ghats. This gas station has a decent food court, useable toilets, clean surroundings and you get good gas too. Due to the cyclone hovering around Tamil Nadu coasts, the highway drive in all of Tamil Nadu was under rains. It was raining light and then lashing at some places to the extent that I had to slow down considerably as visibility was poor. Water sprays off trucks that you just can’t see ahead. The wipers and windscreen washer arrangement is superb on the Linea. The system is a little funny though. Pushing the wiper stalk ‘UP’, gives you a single rapid sweep of the wiper blades. Not so in intermittent mode. This is a slower sweep of the wiper blades. For a moment it reminded me of the ultra high speed Ferrari performance wiper motor on the old Uno. Remember that? I did not really push the car to its limits to check for grip from the good years. Most suggest swapping them. I find them good. My days of driving like a lunatic are over and our roads provide very little opportunity to warrant a tire swap. I am happy with what the stock good years can do. Let us see how they perform once more miles have been clocked.

Fiat Linea T-Jet : The Poor Man's Ultimate Driving Machine-p1030092_resize.jpg

So what do I think of the Linea TJet? Just close your eyes and buy one is all I can say. Sadly, I don’t find it on sale anymore. No Tjet to be seen on the 2012 line up. The Linea TJet ticks all the boxes as a good car and as an awesome driver’s car. The efficiency was not to my satisfaction considering that I drove my new car with a light foot. I got a max of 12.5kmpl. Then again, with all the engine components still running tight, I would give this some more time. I just love the way this car drives. It feels as if it is running on rails. There are cars with better ergonomics. I won’t say the Linea is bad. They just need getting used to. Space is the only negative. I would rate it smaller than some very well thought out small cars. My wife hates the heavy doors. She has very rarely managed to shut them in one go. I like them this way. This is one solid car. Power and Torque are just awesome. Prod the throttle just a little is all you need to do to get going and it responds this way even into the higher gears. The rush of the turbo starts at a low 1700-1800 rpm and then goes crazy closing in on 3000rpm. I have not reved beyond this to know what happens. I am sure there is a lot more fun in the higher revs. The engine is not exactly quiet. On the outside, it sounds like a diesel when the engine is cold. The hydraulic tappets make their presence felt even on the TJet. On the inside, it is quiet when driven right and can get vocal as you build high engine speeds. It is a noise I like. Sounds like the intake breathing more than mechanical noise. I love it. The engine is smooth as silk. I feel it will rev easily even towards the red line. There is no hint of power loss when the air conditioning kicks in. You can hear the radiator fan though even when it is spinning at slow speeds. I did hear and feel it spin up to full rpm and the entire car was vibrating. Causes a little whirl wind under the car too with dust getting kicked up. There is only one fan though. The Team bhp review said there are two. I find it easy to use Blue N Me and My Car controls. The menu goes quiet deep for Blue N Me. The air conditioning is first rate. My complaints would be the cheap plastics in some places and the lousy stock floor mats. The plastic part that meets the windscreen and runs into the engine bay is just horrible. As for the floor mats, I do not know why they bother making them. Being a fabric carpet floor mat, they are dust magnets. It is just not suited to our dusty environment. The rubber ones are more like it. Besides, in just 1500km, the driver’s side floor mat looks a little worn at the area where I rest my left foot. Fiat charge a bomb for these low quality carpets. Tata Fiat have now installed small plastic caps over the front strut mounts. This will solve the rust problem of the strut screw. The brakes are first rate. Moving from a Ford Ikon to a Linea T Jet, there is no comparison as far as the brakes go. You could stand on the Ikons brakes and nothing would happen. In the T Jet, a light dab on the brakes is all you need to slow down. The cars turning radius is something I have already gotten used to. Even still, Fiat have to look at improving the turning radius for India. I do know this involves several structural and mechanical changes to the car and this may have to go back to the drawing board. It needs to be done. The parking arrangement at my apartment requires you to do a “S” reverse pattern with a couple of concrete pillars in between. It takes half a dozen attempts for me to park the car. I could do this in one go on my Ford. The reverse parking sensors turns out as a blessing for this car. I got them free. They are supposed to be Fiat stock sensors. The system reports status via voice, audio alarms and on the rear view mirror. A second inside rear view mirror was installed for the parking sensors over the existing one.

Problems and concerns? Hopefully I don’t have many. Blue N Me and the Tuner mode have no link at all. The stereo still turns on by itself ever so rarely when you crank the car. This is even after turning off Auto Play in My Car settings. I have lost Bluetooth connection several times in the middle of a phone call. The call stays active on the phone though. When you hit the button on the climate control system that has a “star” icon, this is air conditioning; the system always turns on in fresh air mode. I hate this. Why can’t it remember how I last used the system, which was re circulate. The boot does not shut very easily. You need to use effort in the range of nearly slamming it or it won’t close. I did address this with Prerana during the pdi and they said a re grease of the lock set will help which they did, but the story remains the same. Reflection of the dashboard on the windscreen is a problem. I doubt if there is a way to eliminate this. I blame the shiny (not cheap) plastics.

If you love cars, you love driving and Fiat make some of the finest cars to drive. The Linea is such a gem. I cannot for the life understand why Fiat have failed this time around as well.Lousy engines to start with is all I can think off. The 90horse power and T Jet is what they should have originally come up with. I never really did a comparison of anything with the Linea. One test drive was all it took. The comparisons were just reading material off Team bhp and auto magazines. A child hood pal suggested I try the Rapid but I ignored it. I know what a good car should feel like. Just like everyone else, I wanted a complete package. The priority was driving dynamics and I doubt if any car in the segment of the Linea can hold a candle to the T Jet capabilities. I did not try the Fiesta which is probably the only car worth listing as a complete driver’s car. Ford just ruined it with the cheap plastics and horrible engine. After I saw the Ford at a dealership, it was clear than the Linea’s plastics were superior in every way. I considered the overall package I was going to get. At 9.75 lac on the road in Bangalore; there is nothing to beat the T Jet.
Fiat Linea T-Jet : The Poor Man's Ultimate Driving Machine-p1030097_resize.jpg

Last edited by Amartya : 25th January 2012 at 10:04.
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Old 25th January 2012, 08:11   #23
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Default Re: Fiat Linea T-Jet : The Poor Man's Ultimate Driving Machine

Nice to read your travelogue on this thread, I'm sure you had a great time Thanks a lot for sharing. Your bungalow looks fabulous

I agree with most of what you said. The stock goodyears are good for regular usage and I have found that the noise is not as high as it was in the initial days, tyres seem to have settled in now. Grip is also adequate, even in the ghats. I will stick with these for the time being since upgrading tyres now will cost me a bomb (around 25k). Once these are due for replacement, say by 20-25k kms, I would save up and probably upgrade to 205/55R16 Michelin Primacy LCs.

Different people have had different experiences with Shell. I have been running Shell Super since day 1 and haven't touched any other brand at all till date. Sathya had used Shell and reported a loss in FE supposedly. Some others also were complaining a loss in FE after using Shell. As far as I know, both Shell normal and Super are 91 octane. It is just that shell super comes with some extra additives. Correct me if I'm wrong.

I completely agree with the problem of dashboard getting reflected on the inside of the windscreen, when driving directly against the direction of the sunlight. The only way to eliminate this problem is to get an transparent anti-glare windshield film installed (non-tinted). The film would also then take care of night time glare from headlamps / high beams of opposite direction cars. 3M has some film for this problem, need to go and check it out sometime for my car as well.

Wishing you many more miles and smiles on the jet. Do update with information once you get your first service done.

Last edited by KarthikK : 25th January 2012 at 08:21.
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Old 25th January 2012, 08:30   #24
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Originally Posted by KarthikK View Post
Your bungalow looks fabulous
The house in the second photograph is not my house. That is my uncle's place in Palghat, where we did a pit stop on our way to Cochin and then on the return, stopped for lunch. Yes; it is a beautiful house. It is so quiet that I felt like staying there.


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Originally Posted by KarthikK View Post
Different people have had different experiences with Shell.
Shell made no difference when I had a Ford Ikon. So I did not bother using it for my Fiat too. Yes; it is a mixed bag. This also indicates inconsistency in the brew which is surprising for Shell.

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Originally Posted by KarthikK View Post
The only way to eliminate this problem is to get an transparent anti-glare windshield film installed (non-tinted).
Need to consider doing this as it is a serious problem.

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Originally Posted by KarthikK View Post
Wishing you many more miles and smiles on the jet.
Thank you. I plan on updating this thread, hopefully by the weekend with some pictures.
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Old 25th January 2012, 16:44   #25
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Your car looks amazing sandeep (or rather my car too LOL!)..

You have not noticed the speed volume, its a boon in highways. The volume increases with speed, you can set the sensitivity to high or low. Pretty cool.

The default volume of phone can be changed from head unit. Hit Menu- External Volume and set it to your preferred level.

Do not worry about the FE, during my recent ride to bandipur I compelled the turbocharged petrol to cough up 19.7 kmpl, check the link
http://www.team-bhp.com/forum/test-d...service-5.html

Also for audio set this- Max Bass, Max Treble, Loud - ON. I know the settings looks metallic, but do this and listen in low volumes. I am pretty sure your perception will change. Stock audio setting is flat and bland.

@Karthikk- I have also noticed dropped FE using Shell. While on the way to office with average drive I would get 9.5 to 10. With HP I am getting 11-11.5, sometimes 12. This does not count the maniac way driving (it drops to 9kmpl using HP versus 7 kmpl using shell)

With GY tyres, I managed to do burnout unknowingly on a tar road while TDing(road opposite to SAP, whitefield EPIP) . That was the day I decided to replace them on day-1.
BTW, I think you must be aware that the GY NCT are the cheapest available tyre in that size (4500/- a piece)
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Old 25th January 2012, 19:51   #26
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Your car looks amazing sandeep
Thank you very much.

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Originally Posted by Speed Pujari View Post
You have not noticed the speed volume, its a boon in highways
Yes I have. Never really put it to use as I drive mostly without any music. My ears are wide open for all the noises from the car. I do listen to music on a long drive or if I am stuck in traffic. Not on the daily work commute.

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Originally Posted by Speed Pujari View Post
The default volume of phone can be changed from head unit.
Learnt about this after reading the manual. The manual does not say it will alter the gain of the Blue N Me announcement and voice calls. I just assumed that this was probably the control and it worked.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Speed Pujari View Post
Do not worry about the FE, during my recent ride to bandipur I compelled the turbocharged petrol to cough up 19.7 kmpl
That is excellent fuel economy.

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Originally Posted by Speed Pujari View Post
Also for audio set this- Max Bass, Max Treble, Loud - ON.
Will try it out.
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Old 29th January 2012, 01:36   #27
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Not much to update. Mostly photographs of my car. She looks beautiful. Thank you to the folks at 3M.

Now that there is an addition to the family (I have a 3 month old son), my wife is stuck at home. While I was at 3M, getting exterior detailing done on the car (discussed in the thread 3M car care in ub city), I sent a text to my wife and asked her if she would like to go for a drive on the Hyderabad freeway. The reply was instant and it was a "yes; we are already ready to hit the road".

I have been reading a lot about the Hyderabad highway. So many have said that the journey can be done in 8 hours without pushing it. I wanted to discover this road, add some miles to the car, rip a little and most important, a small family road trip or outing. Once I was done with 3M, I headed to the gas station near my place, tanked up and went home. My wife and son were ready, we packed some snacks and hit the road. As usual, driving out of Bangalore was slow. The road leading to the airport is in terrible shape. Diversions all over the place to make way for the dedicated airport corridor. Why on earth did not not think of this when they were building the airport? Had to deal with the usual speed humps on the highway too. After a good 10km past the airport turn off, things improve. You can see miles of road ahead of you and its total pedal to metal tarmac. It is still a risky freeway but I would rate it as the best and fastest out of Bangalore. The freeway leading to salem and chennai is truck madness. The one to Hyderabad had very few trucks. We went just shy of the first toll booth, took a u turn and pulled over.

The Linea T Jet has to be the best drivers car in its segment. I was holding speeds of 130kmph for extended periods. Nothing could unsettle the car. As with just about every highway in India, the Hyderabad one has a lot of uneven bits of tarmac. Nothing broken, just uneven. Some patches are quite bad to the extent that it can be scary on a car, driven at speed with a soft suspension setup. The T Jets suspension is tuned to perfection. Long sweeping bends are a joy. The steering kept telling me what was going on at the wheels. I am not sure if I can fault the tire's for this or the insulation of the car; it does get quite loud in the car when you are doing high speeds. My stereo was playing at volumes I can't imagine listening too when driving at city traffic speeds. The 5th cog on the T Jet is really tall or I do not know if it is due to the long stroke engine. It must be both. The engine was spinning at just 4300rpm and we were doing speeds of 170kmph. This felt like we were going fast. 130kmph felt like we were doing 80kmph. 2000km was clocked on the odometer during this outing.

We were back in Bangalore by around 7pm. Did a quick pit stop at Corner House before heading home. It was yummy.

I over took a slow moving Baleno that had a team bhp sticker on it.
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Old 29th January 2012, 01:43   #28
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Needed to add a few more photographs.....
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Old 29th January 2012, 03:58   #29
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Default Re: Fiat Linea T-Jet : The Poor Man's Ultimate Driving Machine

Sandeepmohan

Congratulations on the Jet ride.
You have mentioned that the car feels slow and seemingly lacks power in your earlier posts. Not sure if you still feel the same,

The reason maybe
1. You have been driving on pretty low revs continously and the ECU adapts to the driving style.
2. You may try holding on to the gear till you reach HP max, you will find that in the manual.
3. Do the above for a couple of gears, and then watch the difference when you drive.

You have also mentioned that the car is large on the outside and relatively small on the inside,
1. Visually you are right,
2. I feel that the Fiat seat squabs (bottom) are pretty deep, and they provide very good under thigh support both in the front and the back.
3. My belief is that other cars would not give as deep squabs and the open space looks more and gives the look of having a lot more space.
4. If you have noticed the front seats also are pretty wide.
5. Especially if you were to compare it with Ikon rear seat, it would show a lot of space between the back of the driver seat and the rear squab.
6. But i feel that the Ikon rear seat severely lacks under thigh support relative to your current Fiat.



Wishing you very happy motoring for years to come on the Jet.
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Old 29th January 2012, 08:42   #30
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First of all congrats on the beauty. It looks awesome simply. And every spirited drive will be just pure bliss.

Couple of points..

You had mentioned that the Jet comes with an intercooler in your opening post. I thought there wasnt one. And in one another post you had told that you will add an intercooler later..

Am confused. Is there an intercooler in the Indian TJet?
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