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Old 28th September 2012, 18:34   #1
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Smile My first Car - Fiat Grande Punto 90 HP

Firstly, thanks for the warm welcome guys. I am really happy to be a part of this forum.

It's a bit long story folks and here's how it unfolds.

The Dilemma
Unlike others, my car purchase started with a dilemma: New or used ?

I always believed that there's a pride of ownership and peace of mind in being a vehicle's FIRST owner.On the other hand, buying a used vehicle means getting More car for your money. It has its risks though, which could cost you more over the life of the vehicle. The fact is, you are buying a vehicle that someone else has owned and driven. We just don't know how well it's been driven or how well it's been cared for. A used vehicle will require maintenance and possibly expensive repairs far sooner than a new one. These were my concerns.

My initial thought was to buy a SUV and so I started looking at various options in the market. At that time Duster fever was just catching up and there I was eagerly waiting for its launch. I just wanted to see if it's worth the hype and if it fits my budget. Although duster in my opinion was good, somehow I felt it was missing something in terms of interiors and features. With respect to its price, it was a let down. Renault got a bit greedy here. The drive quality was great though. I just wanted something fully loaded and something that would go easy on my pocket. YES, Cash definitely is the KING here.

So, here I was back to square one thinking what to do next..
a) Should I stretch my budget and go for an SUV. But it would burn a big hole in my wallet.
b) Should I just settle down for a Hatch for now. But I wanted a monster..

Twist in the tale
Suddenly one day, I received a call from my dear friend saying that his colleague is leaving for US and wont be coming back for the next two to three years or so. He said that his friend was thinking of selling off his Fiat Punto 90 HP. He told me that the car is only 1-1/2 year old and is in an excellent condition and asked if I was interested in buying it.

Just like me, my friend (Shiva) is a car enthusiast and when he says that the condition of the car is in excellent condition, he means it..If its about cars or anything else, I always rely on his advice. Moreover I was told that for nearly 6 months he was not in India and it was rarely used by his family during his absence.

When it comes to cars in the Hatch segment, without a doubt, FIAT Punto is the car that has striking good looks. I always loved that car and admired its beauty ever since it was launched. I went through a lot of other reviews at Team-BHP forum, AutoCar and Overdrive magazines.

How lucky I was, I thought! But USED ? Hmm...but it's only 1-1/2 year old..I started thinking... Like I said, I am not too fond of used vehicles, but since its only 1-1/2 year old and since it's in an excellent condition, I decided to have a look at the vehicle.

With a BIG smile on my face, I told him, well, if you think that the car is excellent condition, lets go and have a look at it. I called up this guy and told him that I was interested in buying his car. We then set up a meet nearby to my place. Me and my friend inspected the vehicle and except for minor scratches in the front right bumper and the loss of right fender, we felt everything is in good condition. After getting the inspection done and checking the engine for unusual noise etc, We checked the interiors. We felt that it's as good as NEW barring the front bumper scratches and the fender.

We then took the car for a spin and just to get a second opinion we also showed it to our trusty mechanic hoping that he may discover problems unknown to us. Sometimes a second opinion can be helpful too. He inspected the vehicle and ultimately gave us the green signal.

About the car
The vehicle was manufactured in 2010, 6th June, and he bought it on Dec 28th and got it registered on Jan 28th 2011. Till Aug 2012, the vehicle has done 22,000 Kms. (Third free service is still pending.) He also changed the front two tyres to Bridgestone as he hated GoodYear ones
The color is one of my favorite too... Exotica red.

One final check that I did was that I took a note of the registration details and looked up the RTA site just to confirm that there are NO cases registered on this vehicle. Once everything is clear up to my satisfaction, we then discussed the financials and then settled for an amount. Since the car had few scratches here and there, without me negotiating much, he reduced the initial offered price. Now at that price, I just didn't want to let go of this offer at all costs. I kept constant touch with him and finalized the deal for 5,10,000 /-.

Since he already took the loan from HDFC bank, I got the loan approved from the same, pre-closed his loan and paid the rest of the amount in cash and took the keys from him.

Yoo Hoooooo MY FIRST CAR
Yoohooo !!! I just bought my FIRST Car and that too a FIAT. My association with FIAT began way back from the Padmini days. My dad used to own a Premier Padmini and I learned driving in that vehicle. Too bad, we sold it off but I always had a special respect for FIAT vehicles.

There is a saying that one can't forget the curves of their very first. I don't think I will either!

The feeling of a first car is yet to sink in and words alone cant express this feeling.

Exteriors
Do I really need to mention how beautiful this car looks.. Let the pictures do the talking

My first Car - Fiat Grande Punto 90 HP-1.jpg

Side Profile

My first Car - Fiat Grande Punto 90 HP-2.jpg

From the back

My first Car - Fiat Grande Punto 90 HP-3.jpg

From the Front

My first Car - Fiat Grande Punto 90 HP-5.jpg

The only defect

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My first Car - Fiat Grande Punto 90 HP-6.jpg


Interiors

Many people felt USB socket being in the dashboard is a big downside. I don't usually remove it frequently and to me, it's in a good position.

Back seat design & cushioning are excellent. 60:40 split & full flat folding is nice

AC vent beneath the front seat. Awesome !

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The wonderful steering

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Climate Control and Audio system
(AC is effective and the speakers are mediocre)

My first Car - Fiat Grande Punto 90 HP-77.jpg

Controls on the door handle
(The ability to control OVRM mirrors is a useful. Wish auto up feature is available to other window too.)

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Leg room in the back when the seat is completely pushed to the front

My first Car - Fiat Grande Punto 90 HP-88.jpg


What I LIKE

1) The TURBO KICK in this Car. Boy o Boy, once you get used to it, trust me, its very addictive.
2) "The famous thud" when you close the doors. Makes me smile every time.
3) Blue&Me is AWESOME. My phone got connected in an instant. It so easy attending calls & even making calls is super fun. SUPERB !!
4) Voice recognition system is excellent and It recognizes our Indian accent very well. All settings can be accessed just by giving voice commands.
5) The engine is an awesome performer above 2000 rpm.
6) I am floored by the car's driving dynamics, Superb handling.
7) Excellent for Highways..
8) Liked the tag line "No wonder you are behind me ! I am the most powerful hatchback" . This car surely does justice to it.
9) I could be only me, but I have the feeling of sitting in a big car even though I am in a hatch.
10) Speed Volume feature > Volume is automatically increased as the speed builds up!.

What I dislike

1) When playing songs through USB, the co-passenger can't change the tracks. Initially, I thought there is some problem with it. Until I checked the online forums, I realized that's the way it is. I can only change them via the steering mounted controls. Moreover accessing folders in USB each time is a pain. I still don't understand why?

2) Stock speakers are not up to the mark. I am thinking of upgrading them probably in a month or two.

Show off
I showed this car to my uncle. He drove the vehicle for a while and in the end he was like.. Whoa ! is this really Fiat ? I then showed off a bit with "Blue and Me" and "voice recognition" feature. He was awestruck.

Just shift right to match the revs and look at how she tackles the highway...gives me goosebumps just even talking about it !!


Punto's brilliant dynamics with its perfectly matched gearbox keeps the car balanced and grounded at speeds on roads where some of the other cars will give you the feeling that you might get launched into another dimension. TOUCHWOOD, I am glad I bought this wonderful car. Not everyday, would your car make you smile with its looks and performance. After all, it's a decision made from the HEART and my MIND had to listen to it. Most of you who has gone down this road will definitely understand what I meant.

Lastly a big thanks to everyone in this wonderful forum for reading this very long post ! I somehow kept writing on and on.

I will keep updating this thread at regular intervals.

Thanks again!

Last edited by hurricanes : 28th September 2012 at 19:00.
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Old 28th September 2012, 22:37   #2
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Default Re: My first Car - Fiat Grande Punto 90 HP

Congrats on your first car/fiat. I am sure it will bring smile on your face every time you drive it. You are really lucky that you had a chance to buy this beautiful machine at a decent price without any hitch. And I must confess that I just search used punto's in this very color on car trading websites every day!

Few things you should go for:

1. Change the front speakers to good quality components and rear to co-axials. This would enhance the quality of output to a great extent.

2. A small touch up of the scratched area and a good exterior and interior detailing would make turn this car in showroom condition.

3. Remove the dealer sticker from rear wind shield.
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Old 28th September 2012, 23:08   #3
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Default Re: My first Car - Fiat Grande Punto 90 HP

Hearty congratulations on becoming the owner of one of the hottest hatches in our roads today! The Punto in that shade looks really exotic, indeed!

The engine is a gem, and is bound to please the enthusiast inside you. Keep it under control or it will really lift off someday! On a more serious note, the Punto 90 HP has some serious peppy torque on offer. I hope you have taken it on a highway run till now, if not do it ASAP and watch it fly!

The scratches look minor, and yes a nice little detailing job will cover it up nicely. I suggest getting a 3M job done for your Punto, it will help accentuate that wonderful color many times more.

Nothing much is left for you to do. Avail the services and change the rear tyres to Bridgestones as well, if you can. I see your Punto has the original Punto seat covers on as well, and that should compliment the interiors nicely.

Enjoy your ride for many, many miles to come. Drive safe, and keep updating us!
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Old 29th September 2012, 01:57   #4
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Default Re: My first Car - Fiat Grande Punto 90 HP

Quote:
Originally Posted by hurricanes View Post
1) When playing songs through USB, the co-passenger can't change the tracks. Initially, I thought there is some problem with it. Until I checked the online forums, I realized that's the way it is. I can only change them via the steering mounted controls. Moreover accessing folders in USB each time is a pain. I still don't understand why?
yes changing folders via MID using the button is a bit painful. I prefer using Blue&Me. Just say "folders" and you get the list of folders. But yeah other passengers can't change the tracks. thats how it is unfortunately.
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Old 29th September 2012, 08:41   #5
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Default Re: My first Car - Fiat Grande Punto 90 HP

Quote:
Originally Posted by Blow Horn Ok View Post
Congrats on your first car/fiat. I am sure it will bring smile on your face every time you drive it. You are really lucky that you had a chance to buy this beautiful machine at a decent price without any hitch. And I must confess that I just search used punto's in this very color on car trading websites every day!

Few things you should go for:

1. Change the front speakers to good quality components and rear to co-axials. This would enhance the quality of output to a great extent.

2. A small touch up of the scratched area and a good exterior and interior detailing would make turn this car in showroom condition.

3. Remove the dealer sticker from rear wind shield.
Thanks Blow Horn Ok, yes, it does bring a smile.

1) Thanks for the suggestions, I am off to ICE section.
2) Yeah, I need to get the exterior job done ASAP. The interiors are fine though.
3) I have to admit, it's been more than a month since I was planning on removing that dealer sticker.. I've been a bit lazy. I will try remove it today.


Quote:
Originally Posted by RavenAvi View Post
Hearty congratulations on becoming the owner of one of the hottest hatches in our roads today! The Punto in that shade looks really exotic, indeed!

The engine is a gem, and is bound to please the enthusiast inside you. Keep it under control or it will really lift off someday! On a more serious note, the Punto 90 HP has some serious peppy torque on offer. I hope you have taken it on a highway run till now, if not do it ASAP and watch it fly!

The scratches look minor, and yes a nice little detailing job will cover it up nicely. I suggest getting a 3M job done for your Punto, it will help accentuate that wonderful color many times more.

Nothing much is left for you to do. Avail the services and change the rear tyres to Bridgestones as well, if you can. I see your Punto has the original Punto seat covers on as well, and that should compliment the interiors nicely.

Enjoy your ride for many, many miles to come. Drive safe, and keep updating us!
Thanks a lot RavenAvi. It indeed looks exotic.

I've driven it on a Highway and I am simply blown away by its performance.

The scratches are minor and all it needs is a minor makeover. I have no complaints on the interiors though. But, I will get the 3M job done first.

Sure, will keep updating this thread with my experiences.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Rock 'n' rollz View Post
yes changing folders via MID using the button is a bit painful. I prefer using Blue&Me. Just say "folders" and you get the list of folders. But yeah other passengers can't change the tracks. thats how it is unfortunately.
Thanks Rock 'n' rollz, I got used to it now. I say "Albums" and I get a list of all albums. But again, navigating through each of them is a pain sometimes.
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Old 29th September 2012, 14:54   #6
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Default Re: My first Car - Fiat Grande Punto 90 HP

If you have planned for speaker upgrade and touch up etc, go for Interior & exterior detailing post these activities. You could place any 6.5 inch components @ front and 6 inch co-axials at rear based on your listening and budget preference. Also get a good set of floor mats. The current ones are OK for rainy season, but i feel it doesn't gel well with the interiors. Also it looks as it is slippery!
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Old 29th September 2012, 19:05   #7
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Smile Re: My first Car - Fiat Grande Punto 90 HP

Quote:
Originally Posted by Blow Horn Ok View Post
If you have planned for speaker upgrade and touch up etc, go for Interior & exterior detailing post these activities. You could place any 6.5 inch components @ front and 6 inch co-axials at rear based on your listening and budget preference. Also get a good set of floor mats. The current ones are OK for rainy season, but i feel it doesn't gel well with the interiors. Also it looks as it is slippery!
My first priority is to get the external job done and once done, I will then go for an ICE upgrade.

You are right. The current set of floor mats doesn't gel well with the interiors at all. I am only keeping them until I get a new set of 3D mats.
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Old 30th September 2012, 21:45   #8
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Default Re: My first Car - Fiat Grande Punto 90 HP

Hey Congrats Hurricanes!! Simply the best hatch to buy on the Indian market today! Have driven the 75 hp pretty extensively, so I can just imagine what a rush it must be to drive this monster! And that's a pretty sweet deal you got there too!

Do get your exteriors cleaned up and audio upgraded and no one would believe its a 1.5 year old car! Color of course looks superb. Do update your work!

Also planning any cosmetic changes?? Do keep us posted!

Cheers. Congrats again!
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Old 30th September 2012, 22:21   #9
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Default Re: My first Car - Fiat Grande Punto 90 HP

Quote:
Originally Posted by thumpingheart View Post
Hey Congrats Hurricanes!! Simply the best hatch to buy on the Indian market today! Have driven the 75 hp pretty extensively, so I can just imagine what a rush it must be to drive this monster! And that's a pretty sweet deal you got there too!

Do get your exteriors cleaned up and audio upgraded and no one would believe its a 1.5 year old car! Color of course looks superb. Do update your work!

Also planning any cosmetic changes?? Do keep us posted!

Cheers. Congrats again!
Thanks much thumping heart. I tell ya this car is made for the highways. Superb handling.

This was a very good deal and I didn't want to miss it at any costs. so without any delay, I closed the deal as quickly as I could. Of course, I verified each and every corner of the car before purchasing.

I will keep you guys posted with my experience..
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