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Old 22nd July 2012, 19:00   #1
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Cool My quest for a hot hatch!! Palio S10 EDIT : Now Another one; the mods have begun

This is going to be a slightly long post, so sorry in advance!


A little flashback to start off,

March 2002- Location- Std X in a reputed school in cochin.

Board exam fever is on, and everyone in class is busy reading their textbooks. Well, everyone except one boy and his friend, somewhere in the back row of class..

What he was reading, was the latest copy of Business Standard Motoring.
The cover stated in bold, "FUN TO DRIVE", and featured a bright yellow S10, amongst other cars.


My quest for a hot hatch!! Palio S10 EDIT : Now Another one; the mods have begun-bsm-cover.jpg

My quest for a hot hatch!! Palio S10 EDIT : Now Another one; the mods have begun-bsm-article.jpg

This was a new term to him, having till then only been passenger in the family matiz and other commuter cars.

Out of all the cars that was featured, the Canary Yellow Hatch stuck to his mind.


A few months later- Board exams done, he finally pesters his parents to take him to the Fiat showroom in cochin. TVS Motors.

What happened there, any forum member can predict. Absolutely no interest from the staff, as usual, and one of them had no idea what an s10 was!


Finally on asking for the 'Yellow Palio', they are taken to the yard, where a few s10s are lying.

It was amazing- Bright yellow, with the bodykit, Pulled down spoiler, Logos everywhere, and Oh the exclusivity!! A Numbered Limited Edition.

The cars were tag # 149, 377,379,471,422 (and 184 not sure)

Love at first sight? You bet! He wanted one. Then and there, but the matiz was hardly a year old, so it was out of the question...


2003- Went with a cousin to check out a palio 1.2(or diesel dont remember), and had a chance to peek into the yard. There they stood, about 3 S10's along with a golden and a silver GTX. There was a difference, they weren't looking as happy and shiny since he first saw them. They were dusty and lay in a corner, forgotten... Palio 1.6's were not known as guzzlers and nobody wanted them..

The boy still wanted one, but his folks would hear none of it, especially after a relative had a very troublesome 1.2(one of the primary reasons why i turned to a fiat hater)


2007- Team Bhp- The S10 dream was all but forgotten, for a few years till he discovered Team Bhp- a bunch of like minded madmen, who finally asked something other than "average kya hain?"

He followed all the s10 threads, mainly Amits(it was the only thread then..) and the dream was still on.

But then again, there were hardly any around, and the dream again went on the backburner, and the boy(me ie) resorted to driving around the matiz.




2010- Done with MBA and got a good job. The first thing on my mind is to buy a car!!

Priorities are clear, Must be affordable and most importantly, FUN TO DRIVE!!

Cars in contention were

Zen 2 door
OHC Vtec
Palio S10


For about 4 months, Not even one good example of them came for sale, and after pushing for another 2 months, I finally decided to act like a sensible person and got a figo!! But somewhere deep in my mind, those three words still haunted me..
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Old 22nd July 2012, 19:15   #2
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Default Re: My quest for a hot hatch!!

Fast forward to August 2011

Sitting late night on office, was just browsing Tbhp classifieds, and i spot an interesting ad. Palio S10 for sale. I open it and i see the ad is by Varun, for MH-02-NA-4460. A car which was fully documented on the forum, and whose thread i had spent considerable time reading and re reading.

Called up varun just for the heck of it, with absolutely no intention of buying. The casual call went on to be a 2 hour conversation, and i realized what an enthusiast he was. What i liked the fact most was that, he never kept saying stuff like, MINT, super clean, the best in india etc etc, or any other such marketing talk. What i got were facts, the good the bad and the ugly.

Told him i'd get back to him, still i had not much of an idea to buy another car.

That thought went off the next day, as work resumed, and i forgot about it, till i saw another ad for the same car, on another site.

Made up my mind, and called varun, and asked for detailed photos of the car. Very details. He responded that he would get back within a few days.




A week goes by, and on a sunday, i recieve the photographs from him. I was a lil taken aback. The car looked nothing like how it was in the threads, but, it was EXACTLY the way varun described it.

The headlights were dull(a common palio problem) and the Paint was very patchy, as though a fungus had attacked it. This was actually not visible in the pix,thanks to the colour but it was specfically highlighted by varun.

But cosmetics were not my worry at all. Originality was. This was my time capsule to my school time dream, and i wanted it to be original right down to the last bit. Most s10s i saw were badly modded, this one was full stock. Case closed.


Called up varun and confirmed the deal, and booked tickets for my close friend and I, to Mumbai, for sept 24.


Sept 24- Had a B'day party last night, and slept off a lil too much!! Suddenly woke up to realize that its almost time for the flight, and somehow rushed to the airport, and reached about 40Min before departure.

even though there was enough time to let us in, the Kingfisher staff decided not to, and we missed the flight!

Last edited by JayD : 22nd July 2012 at 19:57.
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Old 22nd July 2012, 20:32   #3
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Default Re: My quest for a hot hatch!!

The next flight was for 11Am, and thankfully there were 2 tickets for it. Booked them instanly, and soon, we were in Mumbai.

Varun directed us to the parking, and all the while i was looking for a yellow s10 car, amidst all the yellow nanos and premier cabs. Soon i spotted her, even in between all the other yellow cars, she stood out!

My quest for a hot hatch!! Palio S10 EDIT : Now Another one; the mods have begun-c360_20110924-161702_org.jpg


She looked healthy, no dents dings or any stuff which you normally associate with a Mumbai car, but the faded headlights made her look tired.

Got in and i was in for a shock. The interiors were MINT. Looked 9 days old instead of years. Hat off to varun for keeping it like this.

Nervously started the car. This was a moment i was waiting for, since 10th grade. I was finally behind the wheel of an s10!!


Took it slowly outside the airport , and on one of the outside fluovers, varun asked me to floor it, post 4k RPM, it was amazing, and thanks to a broken intake pipe, the noise was fantastic!

No squeaks rattles or anything, only the clutch return was spongy. which was due to the famous MC/SC issue which all palios faced.

Amount paid, asked varun to truck the car, and left by the evening flight.

There was a huge confusion created by Agarwal packers and movers, who were unable to trace the car for a few days, and on Oct 8 2011, 4460 reached chennai!! The transporter informed that they would drive my car to my place the next day. I would have none of it. At 11:00 PM, i drove 70km away, to their unloading point, and took delivery!! Finally she was mine!!


My friend checking out if all is well.

My quest for a hot hatch!! Palio S10 EDIT : Now Another one; the mods have begun-20111008-21.27.42.jpg

Stop for dinner on the way back

My quest for a hot hatch!! Palio S10 EDIT : Now Another one; the mods have begun-20111008-21.49.48.jpg
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Old 23rd July 2012, 12:56   #4
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Default Re: My quest for a hot hatch!!

Early Next day, Cleaned up the car thoroughly, and started to analyze every nook and cranny of the car.

It was obvious that she needed a paint job. Badly. There were no dings or visible rust, but the paint had been cut away in places. Anyways, did a light polish and detailing, and it was time for a photoshoot!

Dragged out the other cars(and bikes) in the garage mid afternoon. The other residents in the complex were wondering what got into these guys!

My quest for a hot hatch!! Palio S10 EDIT : Now Another one; the mods have begun-20111016-13.44.47.jpg

My quest for a hot hatch!! Palio S10 EDIT : Now Another one; the mods have begun-c360_20111016-142733.jpg

My quest for a hot hatch!! Palio S10 EDIT : Now Another one; the mods have begun-20111016-13.45.02.jpg


Photoshoot done, it was time to finally go for a drive.

Too it out on the ECR and headed to Pondicherry.

I had no experience with palios, but had extensively driven Rs's and Vtecs.
Initially compared to them, especially the Vtec, the s10 didnt feel fast. i wasnt pushing much, but still somehow, at the back of my mind, i had a feeling the vtec was faster.

About 50 km into my drive i realized what i was doing wrong, used to the high revving hondas, i was unnecessarily revving the car. This one had much much more usable power low down, and i realized i was shifting gears much lesser. Finally understood the powerband of the car, and started exploiting it to the max!! Felt awesome!!

Another thing was that, unlike the vtec and Zen steel in the family, this one actually felt planted, and not as though it was not connected to the road. The steering was well weighted, and the car was on the road! That too added to making the car feel slow, as in a zen or vtec, anything above 120-140 and you feel as though you are going 3 times that speed!!

After 2 weeks of use, these were my views

The good part

1) Engine- Oh what joy, she loved being pushed, and the engine/exhaust note was to die for. It had torque everywhere and was ready for action anytime.

2)Gearbox- The delightful s10 specific short ratio box was brilliant. I could potter around n town wit 3 people and ac even in 4th, and would pull cleanly away. also, the gears on this car are the primary braking tool. the brakes are nonsense. So the short ratio box helps really.

3) Interiors- Th interiors on 4460 are the best ive ever seen on an s10, and fully original too. hats off to varun for keeping her so well

4) Tires- The car came with an almost new set of michelins. No worries here.

5) Originality- No special edition car is complete without the limited edition bits. Thankfully, this car had all of them intact. most s10's have lost ateast some of the items over time.


The bad parts

1) Brakes- OMGG!!! The brakes on this car need a special thread altogether!! They have to be by far the worst on any automobile!! Spongy feel, slow bite and excessive fade!! What was fiat thinking when they equipped this monster with non existemt brakes like this?? Even my 1957 landmaster has better brakes i feel!

The reason i found later is that the palios abroad came with bigger brakes(indian advy spec) for the more powerful engines, whereas in india, all cars got 1.2 spec brakes!


2) Windshield- The windshield had a fair number of scratches, and visibility at night was very bad. It had to be changed, but that meant losing the excellent Vkool film on the glass.

3) Headlights- Palio headlights let in water. Its a time honoured problem, and my car had it too. Both the headlights were dull and visibility was horrible. Had to change it.

4) Taillight- One tail light lens had cracked and had to be changed

5) Clutch- the clutch was spongy and was not returning to the position properly. Master cylinder was changed by varun, slave had to be changed.

6) Rear Wiper blade- Someone had flicked it, replacement needed.

7)Intake hose cracked- Another common issue with this engine. replacement needed

8) paint- Had cracked in placed and faded in others, a repaint was on the cards, after sorting the mech work.

Last edited by GTO : 25th July 2012 at 15:51. Reason: Adding your review to the opening post itself
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Old 23rd July 2012, 14:08   #5
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Default Re: My quest for a hot hatch!!

Moderator's note: Thread moved to ownership section from Assembly Line.

Congrats on what is arguably still the only hot hatch that has been sold in India. Even till now no car comes close.

Do keep updating the thread on maintenance and any issues you face.
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Old 23rd July 2012, 14:42   #6
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Default re: My quest for a hot hatch!! Palio S10 EDIT : Now Another one; the mods have begun

Jay, the infamous S10 of team bhp is in Chennai? Can we meet sometime?

BIG CONGRATS on the purchase! Tell me you did Chennai - Pondy in 2 hours!
I've never had a chance to drive any of the Palio's that were launched prior to 2007. I've driven the Palio MJD extensively and I'm now enjoying my Punto MJD.
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Old 23rd July 2012, 15:03   #7
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Default re: My quest for a hot hatch!! Palio S10 EDIT : Now Another one; the mods have begun

Congrats Varun. Is this Amit's car? I am pretty sure if it's his car, he would be very happy to see his car being maintened by you and Varun respectively. I too have a feeling for this car ever since I drove a 1.6 sports a few years ago and man, I was blown away! Sadly, I didnt have the money then and now when I have the money, the car is no longer available brand new. Not everyone loves their palio's like others and hence, the quest continues...
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Old 23rd July 2012, 15:28   #8
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Default re: My quest for a hot hatch!! Palio S10 EDIT : Now Another one; the mods have begun

Congrats on the new buy. The S10 surely is a experience any car enthusiast would crave for. You are lucky you got back your dream. Happy Driving.
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Old 23rd July 2012, 16:05   #9
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Default re: My quest for a hot hatch!! Palio S10 EDIT : Now Another one; the mods have begun

Congratulations, and really hats off to your passion. You chased the car of your dreams and only rested after you brought her home. Many others like me skip it, i.e. move on to something better more in-thing in other words the latest.

I for one loved the second gen Honda City 1.5 Vtech, It was one of the first few cars to come in 100BHP power. When the time came to buy a Honda, instead of looking at the City i went with Civic, more latest and similar (or more powerful) engine.
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Old 23rd July 2012, 17:38   #10
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Default re: My quest for a hot hatch!! Palio S10 EDIT : Now Another one; the mods have begun

Quote:
Originally Posted by Vid6639 View Post
Moderator's note: Thread moved to ownership section from Assembly Line.

Congrats on what is arguably still the only hot hatch that has been sold in India. Even till now no car comes close.

Do keep updating the thread on maintenance and any issues you face.
Thanks vid. Yep, in true sense of the word, this is the only hot hatch that was sold in india. The polo/fabia 1.6 dont even come close.

And trust me this thread will be updated. Its updated only till oct 2011, a lot has happened since!!



Quote:
Originally Posted by tud View Post
Jay, the infamous S10 of team bhp is in Chennai? Can we meet sometime?

BIG CONGRATS on the purchase! Tell me you did Chennai - Pondy in 2 hours!
I've never had a chance to drive any of the Palio's that were launched prior to 2007. I've driven the Palio MJD extensively and I'm now enjoying my Punto MJD.


Heya, thanks for the wishes. We can sure meet in chennai, but the car is in kerala as of now.

And pondi chennai was done in sometime less than what you have quoted!
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Old 23rd July 2012, 19:11   #11
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Default re: My quest for a hot hatch!! Palio S10 EDIT : Now Another one; the mods have begun

Congrats on the S10! If Palio 1.2 was so good to drive (thats the only Palio I have driven ever), I can only imagine how much more fun to drive this beast, with the 1.6 litre heart, could be! Enjoy and keep her forever. I am sure these Fiats can last a lifetime, if looked after properly.

Sad that we don't have a hot Punto available here in India - a Punto with 1.4 TJet or 1.8 / 2.0 litre NA?!
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Old 23rd July 2012, 19:18   #12
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Default re: My quest for a hot hatch!! Palio S10 EDIT : Now Another one; the mods have begun

Congratulations on acquiring one of the most sought-after hot-hatchbacks in the country!

I remember reading that article and probably have a copy of that edition too. I was an ardent follower of BSM as a child. And if I recall correctly, it was mentioned in that article that Fiat had tuned the exhaust so that it would make a more distinct and sporty sound. So every time I spotted a Palio S10 on the road, I'd make it a point to annoy my father into driving alongside the car, roll the windows down and peer out just to grasp that fruity note.

Have a wonderful time with your S10. Keep her clean and drive safe!
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Old 23rd July 2012, 20:21   #13
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Default re: My quest for a hot hatch!! Palio S10 EDIT : Now Another one; the mods have begun

Quote:
Originally Posted by amtak View Post
Congrats Varun. Is this Amit's car? I am pretty sure if it's his car, he would be very happy to see his car being maintened by you and Varun respectively. I too have a feeling for this car ever since I drove a 1.6 sports a few years ago and man, I was blown away! Sadly, I didnt have the money then and now when I have the money, the car is no longer available brand new. Not everyone loves their palio's like others and hence, the quest continues...

Hi, Jayadev here. Varun was the previous owner of the car, who got it from amit.
Im sure both of them would be happy to see the car in its oresent state, its far removed from the car u see in the pix!!

Even i wanted a brand new s10, but couldnt buy it then, so i did when i could. Good deals are available if you look hard. Its never too late...



Quote:
Originally Posted by gemithomas View Post
Congrats on the new buy. The S10 surely is a experience any car enthusiast would crave for. You are lucky you got back your dream. Happy Driving.
Thanks gemi. You are right on the driving experience part, i doubt any other car in this segment or a couple higher gives the same thrills. Too bad you had to sell you advy..



Quote:
Originally Posted by mayankjha1806 View Post
Congratulations, and really hats off to your passion. You chased the car of your dreams and only rested after you brought her home. Many others like me skip it, i.e. move on to something better more in-thing in other words the latest.

I for one loved the second gen Honda City 1.5 Vtech, It was one of the first few cars to come in 100BHP power. When the time came to buy a Honda, instead of looking at the City i went with Civic, more latest and similar (or more powerful) engine.

Thanks mayank, even i was tempted to get other cars too, like a vtec or an rs. But somehow, deep in myself, the desire for an s10 was always there.

Butin no time, some other interesting cars too made its way into the garage. More details soon...
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Old 23rd July 2012, 20:28   #14
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Default re: My quest for a hot hatch!! Palio S10 EDIT : Now Another one; the mods have begun

Stunning car, and a good article to read! i am sharing this link with my friends who love the yellow S10

safe riding!
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Old 23rd July 2012, 20:38   #15
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Default re: My quest for a hot hatch!! Palio S10 EDIT : Now Another one; the mods have begun

Congrats JayD! Wish you lot more happy miles with the S10!
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