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Old 29th November 2012, 11:18   #1
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Default VW Vento TDI Highline 2012 refresh (1st service Update)

I have been a regular reader of team-bhp forums for last several years and signed up recently as a member. This is my first post.

Have been driving a Ford Ikon 1.6 ZXi for last 11 years and I am immensely happy with how it has performed through the years. I was looking for a new car that would provide similar driving experience. After reading through the elaborate and excellent official review threads and ownership threads on team-bhp and taking a test drive, I finally decided to buy Volkswagen Vento TDI Highline (refresh model with black headlamps). After deliberating between pearl black, shadow blue and "candy" white, I decided to settle for white color (which apparently seems to be a current popular color across segments and models).

Got the delivery of the car early November and I have now driven around 1500 Kms. These initial Kms covered stop-and-go Bangalore traffic, ghat roads (around Nilgiris) and highways (Bangalore-Mysore, Coimbatore-Dharmapuri-Bangalore as part of Bangalore-Mysore-Coonoor-Coimbatore-Bangalore trip) in equal measure.

The official reviews and other ownership threads extensively cover most of the pros/cons. Will just highlight points that are personally important for me here.

Dealership Experience:


I bought the car from Elite Motors ("Volkswagen Bangalore") on Hosur Road, Bangalore. My experience has been no different from what other people have documented in the forum about Volkswagen dealerships. The dealer seemed indifferent through the entire process (no followups about delivery after booking amount was paid) and the delivery process itself was far from satisfactory (had to wait for about 3 hours at the dealership even though the dealer had a lead time of about 1 week to complete the registration/documentation). The car was delivered straight from the dusty stock yard after a shoddy "3M" wiping job and the brand new car was dusty inside and unclean outside when I took delivery. I posted detailed feedback about the dealership experience to Volkswagen Customer Care and apart from usual acknowledgement, I have not heard back from them. Overall, purchasing a Volkswagen vehicle seems to be fraught with hassles and confusion due to indifferent and unprofessional dealerships. The dealership did not appear serious enough about their business and at no point were they confidence inspiring or appeared trustworthy (even had second thoughts about cancelling the booking).

Accessories/Modifications:


Car is currently in stock condition. Being a highline model, it came factory-fitted with "leatherette" seats, RCD 310 music system, OEM alloys with Apollo Acelere tyres and integrated reverse camera/GPS/bluetooth device from Garmin. Just added the Maxpider 3D floor mats and replaced the antenna with a shorter version purchased from ebay.

Initial Driving Experience:

Pros:
  • High quality paint job
  • Overall build quality is good
  • Good plush ride on well laid highways
  • Silent cabin and well controlled/damped road/engine noise
  • Engine performance very good after turbo kicks in at around 1500 rpm
  • Comfortable seats; driver seat height adjustment is of immense help
  • Reach and height adjustable steering wheel is a huge plus
  • Good gear shift quality and feel
  • Front center arm rest useful for long drives
  • Good ground clearance
  • Rear AC vents
  • Surprisingly very good, clean, well-balanced sound from RCD 310 music system
  • Climatronic AC is good but seems a bit noisy even at low fan speeds
Cons:
  • Engine clatter as soon as the car starts though it dies down very quickly
  • Low speed ride on rough roads not the best; however the ride gets significantly better at increased speeds
  • Handling not on par with Ford Ikon I have driven for more than a decade now; though it is quite good compared to current cars in the segment
  • EPS good for city driving but not great for highway driving; though it seems as good or better than segment competitors
  • Clutch seems a bit hard and clutch pedal travel/play seems a bit too long especially when one wants to shift quickly; should be a matter of getting used to especially since I am driving a diesel car for the first time
  • The dash board reflects onto the windscreen during day time and this can be quite a bother; however, over a period, I seemed to be getting used to this
  • Inadequate headlamp setup for night driving
  • Horn not easily accessible when needed in an emergency; again this may just be a matter of getting used to
  • Wiper blades cannot be lifted unless wipers are put to service position and bonnet paint could get damaged if folks washing the car force the wiper up; this is a well documented issue in the forum
  • Minor rattling noise from front arm rest and seat buckles while driving on rough roads at low speeds
  • Build quality of some of the parts not consistent with overall build quality; the wiper/indicator stalks and the seat belt buckle feel cheap, the headlamp angle adjustment knob ill-fitted into the dashboard
  • Very poor rear visibility due to head rests in rear seats; however, reverse sensors integrated into RCD 310 music system and reverse camera integrated with Garmin GPS unit help while reversing in tight spots (though personally never expected to use these aids)
  • Spare wheel placed wrong side up in the boot to make space for toolkit and hence air pressure cannot be checked without removing the wheel; a silly design choice
  • Beige color "leatherette" seats prone to getting dirty but should be easy to clean
Overall, I am happy with the car and hope to get used to the quirks and whims soon. I reserve the right to convert the aforementioned pros to cons and vice versa as I drive more

Meanwhile here are some pictures I clicked during the trip around nilgiris. Will add more photos of interiors to highlight changes in refresh model.
Attached Thumbnails
VW Vento TDI Highline 2012 refresh (1st service Update)-20121120_cpl2747.jpg  

VW Vento TDI Highline 2012 refresh (1st service Update)-20121121_cpl2783.jpg  

VW Vento TDI Highline 2012 refresh (1st service Update)-20121121_cpl2847.jpg  

VW Vento TDI Highline 2012 refresh (1st service Update)-20121121_cpl2890.jpg  

VW Vento TDI Highline 2012 refresh (1st service Update)-20121121_cpl2912.jpg  

VW Vento TDI Highline 2012 refresh (1st service Update)-20121121_cpl2934.jpg  

VW Vento TDI Highline 2012 refresh (1st service Update)-20121121_cpl2935.jpg  


Last edited by GTO : 30th November 2012 at 10:46. Reason: Adding your pics to the opening post itself
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Old 30th November 2012, 02:12   #2
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Default re: VW Vento TDI Highline 2012 refresh (1st service Update)

Congrats on you new Vento. Wishing you many happy miles with her.

Do add a few pictures btw. The Vento now offers more value with those additional features. The dark headlamps will be looking good with the Candy White color, i guess. But, i simply don't like the new alloys. But, one doubt. Why do you say EPS is not good for highway ?

Last edited by akhil_rpmlover : 30th November 2012 at 02:15.
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Old 30th November 2012, 03:33   #3
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Default re: VW Vento TDI Highline 2012 refresh (1st service Update)

Congratulations!!

I would have definitely taken the vento instead of the city just because of that awesome engine and respectable handling and space which neither the verna( not comfortable in the back, handling) fiesta(boring engines, dull and not spacious interiors) could offer and its looks smashing in black!.But sadly dad had to take the city because the company which dad works for had a tie up with Honda. Not complaining much though, love to rev that i-vtec even though dad hates the sound!

The engine clatter and hard clutch are normal for ventos, you will get used to it in no time.I am surprised that the build quality of some parts are not good, Volkswagen should pull up their socks.
I

Please upload some pics of your car as its customary in every ownership thread

wishing you many miles of safe and fun filled journeys with your German brute.
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Old 30th November 2012, 04:29   #4
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Default re: VW Vento TDI Highline 2012 refresh (1st service Update)

Congratulations on your new Vento , its sad that the pre sales experience was poor, kind of spoils the excitement a tad on the delivery day. Please add some pics, yours is the first thread after VW refreshed the vento, special request - please click a pic of the new meaty gear lever taken from jetta, i absolutely love it.
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Old 30th November 2012, 07:25   #5
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Default re: VW Vento TDI Highline 2012 refresh (1st service Update)

It's been a while since the last Vento ownership here. Vento is truly the leader in this segment with respect to performance.

Congrats on you new Vento. Wishing you many happy miles with her.

Would appreciate you uploading pics at your convenience since yours is the refreshed 2012 model.

Cheers!
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Old 30th November 2012, 08:47   #6
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Default re: VW Vento TDI Highline 2012 refresh (1st service Update)

@akhil_rpmlover: Thanks! I am used to heavy steering and excellent feel of Ford Ikon; so I think Vento steering seems a bit too light and lacks similar feel. I may get used to this eventually.

@rambo1o1: Thanks! Yes, I was a bit surprised too about built quality of some of the bits and parts. But overall build quality is quite good.

@coolboy007: Thanks! Will add more pictures of interiors.

@volkman10: Thanks and I agree that Vento is a segment leader in performance.
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Old 30th November 2012, 10:37   #7
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Default re: VW Vento TDI Highline 2012 refresh (1st service Update)

Congrats pc73. I too own a shadow blue refreshed model and its a hoot to drive. Enjoy your car and drive safe.
Black headlamps sure look good on white.

Quote:
Originally Posted by pc73 View Post
Clutch seems a bit hard and clutch pedal travel/play seems a bit too long especially when one wants to shift quickly; should be a matter of getting used to especially since I am driving a diesel car for the first time
Same here, It's just a matter of getting used to it.

Quote:
Originally Posted by pc73 View Post
The dash board reflects onto the windscreen during day time and this can be quite a bother; however, over a period, I seemed to be getting used to this
Read somewhere on the forum that using polarised sunglasses solves this issue.

Quote:
Originally Posted by pc73 View Post
Horn not easily accessible when needed in an emergency; again this may just be a matter of getting used to
True horn is a bit hard also. doesnt work with a light push. You have to push harder (though I rarely use it)

Quote:
Originally Posted by pc73 View Post
Wiper blades cannot be lifted unless wipers are put to service position and bonnet paint could get damaged if folks washing the car force the wiper up; this is a well documented issue in the forum
I have faced this issue and car wash guy has slightly scratched the paint on the edges. ( though have fired him now and taken things in my own hands). If you are availing the services of the car wash guys, you would have to remember to move the wiper blades to service position every time you park the car. I've had instances of me remembering this late at night and then I would actually pick up my car keys and go down and put the blades in service position for the wash guy. Finally I had to tell him not to touch the blades if they were down.
When will Volkswagen do something about this????

Quote:
Originally Posted by pc73 View Post
Minor rattling noise from front arm rest and seat buckles while driving on rough roads at low speeds
Have not faced this.

Quote:
Originally Posted by pc73 View Post
Build quality of some of the parts not consistent with overall build quality; the wiper/indicator stalks and the seat belt buckle feel cheap, the headlamp angle adjustment knob ill-fitted into the dashboard
I would disagree here. specially about the ill fitting of headlight adjustment. Why do you say that?

Quote:
Originally Posted by pc73 View Post
Very poor rear visibility due to head rests in rear seats; however, reverse sensors integrated into RCD 310 music system and reverse camera integrated with Garmin GPS unit help while reversing in tight spots (though personally never expected to use these aids)
Only damn issue is that you have to plug in the Garmin charger in to the 12V socket for the reverse camera to work. I hate doing this every time. Why cant it work without the charger plugged in?

On another note are you using the Garmin EcoRoute? What values did you enter while creating the vehicle profile?

Last edited by surd_biker : 30th November 2012 at 10:39.
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Old 30th November 2012, 10:49   #8
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Default re: VW Vento TDI Highline 2012 refresh (1st service Update)

Congrats pc73 on an excellent car.We had an Ikon 1.6 too and expect a Shadow Blue Vento TDI Highline in a few weeks

A few questions

1.Why not the new Fiesta??
2.Are the headlamps adequate for night driving in the highways??Any modifications planned??
3.Mileage??
4.Does the car autolock at 15kmph??
5.Any GC issues??
6.How do you rate the clarity of the stock music setup??
7.Please explain this "service position"!!

Thanks in advance.Please post some pics of the interiors.

Drive safe

Cheers

Last edited by KINI : 30th November 2012 at 11:09.
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Old 30th November 2012, 11:11   #9
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Default

Mod Note : Please use the EDIT or MULTI-QUOTE buttons instead of typing one post after another on the SAME THREAD! To know how to multi-quote, click here (How to MULTI-QUOTE (when replying to a thread) on Team-BHP).

Thanks surd_biker.

Quote:
Originally Posted by surd_biker View Post

I would disagree here. specially about the ill fitting of headlight adjustment. Why do you say that?
This may be an issue with my car. When I try to turn the knob, the entire unit sort of moves in and out.

Quote:
Originally Posted by surd_biker View Post
Only damn issue is that you have to plug in the Garmin charger in to the 12V socket for the reverse camera to work. I hate doing this every time. Why cant it work without the charger plugged in?
The dealer routed the USB cable via the dash board. So I don't have the USB cable dangling on the dashboard.

Quote:
Originally Posted by surd_biker View Post
On another note are you using the Garmin EcoRoute? What values did you enter while creating the vehicle profile?
Haven't had time to play with Garmin yet. Any inputs here would be helpful.

Thanks KINI.

Quote:
Originally Posted by KINI View Post
Congrats pc73 on an excellent car.We had an Ikon 1.6 too and expect a Shadow Blue Vento TDI Highline in a few weeks
Would just confirm that you made the right choice!

Quote:
Originally Posted by KINI View Post
1.Why not the new Fiesta??
At the outset I did not like the looks of new Fiesta (bulky rear). Prefer a car with conservative styling (more like Fiesta Classic). Moreover, having driven a Ford for more than a decade, wanted to try VW which I find better in terms of performance and styling (IMHO) compared to new Fiesta.

Quote:
Originally Posted by KINI View Post
2.Are the headlamps adequate for night driving in the highways??Any modifications planned??
Just so. Would think about modifications soon, but I don't do a lot of night driving on highways.

Quote:
Originally Posted by KINI View Post
3.Mileage??
During the first 1000 Kms, the MID displayed a milage of about 24Kmpl (!) on highway and 18 Kmpl in city (not sure if mileage compting unit was still calibrating itself). After 1000 Kms, I am getting 21-22 Kmpl on highways and about 15 Kmpl in city. Note that I am not pushing the car hard yet and driving at an almost sedate pace.

Quote:
Originally Posted by KINI View Post
4.Does the car autolock at 15kmph??
Yes, everytime! Though it can be opened from inside. A problem if you have kids.

Quote:
Originally Posted by KINI View Post
5.Any GC issues??
None so far. I have driven over bad potholes and humps, but faced no issues.

Quote:
Originally Posted by KINI View Post
6.How do you rate the clarity of the stock music setup??
As mentioned in my first post, I find this surprisingly good. I am very particular about sound quality (listen to decent floor-standers and good amp at home) and found the RCD 310 + speakers pretty good for a OEM setup (not sure if they have changed the speakers in refresh mode). The vocals are extremely clear and bass is adequate (and this with mp3 files on USB). Have not tried CDs yet.

Quote:
Originally Posted by KINI View Post
7.Please explain this "service position"!!
The owner manual describes a sequence wherein you need to turn off/on ignition, push the wiper stalk down once (not sure if I am missing something; please refer owner manual) which causes wipers to move to vertical position (service position). Wipers should be lifted from windscreen only in this position otherwise they scrape the bonnet and damage paint (atleast the inner edge of the bonnet towards windscreen). I don't like to do this since the dust on windscreen could potentially scratch it when wipers move to service position (atleast when used regularly). I have told the car washing folks about it and have not had any problem so far.

Quote:
Originally Posted by KINI View Post
Thanks in advance.Please post some pics of the interiors.
Will do soon.

Quote:
Originally Posted by surd_biker View Post
I have faced this issue and car wash guy has slightly scratched the paint on the edges. ( though have fired him now and taken things in my own hands). If you are availing the services of the car wash guys, you would have to remember to move the wiper blades to service position every time you park the car. I've had instances of me remembering this late at night and then I would actually pick up my car keys and go down and put the blades in service position for the wash guy. Finally I had to tell him not to touch the blades if they were down.
I live in Bangalore (with bad roads and all kinds of constructions going on) and a layer of dust would be present on the windscreen at the end of the day. I am worried about scratching the windscreen when putting the wipers in service position (not sure if doing wash-and-wipe before putting wipers to service position would be effective here or not!).

Have a nice day!

Last edited by GTO : 2nd December 2012 at 16:41. Reason: Please use the EDIT or MULTI-QUOTE buttons instead of typing one post after another!
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Old 30th November 2012, 11:57   #10
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Default re: VW Vento TDI Highline 2012 refresh (1st service Update)

Congrats pc73. Wish you a lot of happy miles on your new Vento. I noticed that the black headlamps look best on lighter colors like the silver, beige and white. I am sure you are going to have lots of fun with the TDI beast dealership experience aside.

Since you find the headlights inadequate do think of upgrading to 60/55 nightbreakers or the 100/90 with relays. There are ownership threads here who have detailed feedback about the headlight upgrade including a DIY guide by Rohaan. I am currently with the 60/55 nightbreakers which I find it adequate for now though I am thinking of upgrading to the 100/90 with relays. This will be decided after I do a few more night drives.

Any reason you did not think of upgrading the tires? A lot of the Vento owners here have found significant improvement in grip, handling, steering feedback after the tire upgrade. I hope to feel the same once I upgrade this weekend .

Welcome to the Ventophile club.
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Old 30th November 2012, 12:03   #11
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Default re: VW Vento TDI Highline 2012 refresh (1st service Update)

Thanks samarjitdhar!

Quote:
Originally Posted by samarjitdhar View Post
Since you find the headlights inadequate do think of upgrading to 60/55 nightbreakers or the 100/90 with relays.
Yes, I would start with 60/55 nightbreakers soon. Do let me know your thoughts once you upgrade to 100/90 + relays.

Quote:
Originally Posted by samarjitdhar View Post
Any reason you did not think of upgrading the tires? A lot of the Vento owners here have found significant improvement in grip, handling, steering feedback after the tire upgrade. I hope to feel the same once I upgrade this weekend .
Have been in two minds about it (Aceleres seem adequate but not great). Do let me know how your upgrade goes.

Cheers!
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Old 30th November 2012, 12:04   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pc73 View Post
Yes, everytime! Though it can be opened from inside. A problem if you have kids.
Use the child lock when kids are seated at the rear.

Cheers!
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Old 30th November 2012, 12:22   #13
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Thumbs up re: VW Vento TDI Highline 2012 refresh (1st service Update)

Congratulations!

Philips Extreme vision 60/55 (OEM rating and no need for Relays) and a Tyre upgrade (195/60/R15) will do good. Tyre upgrade will improve GC, Grip and Steering feedback.

All the best!

Note: Please post some interiors pics!

Last edited by Chethan B G : 30th November 2012 at 12:24.
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Old 30th November 2012, 12:31   #14
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Default re: VW Vento TDI Highline 2012 refresh (1st service Update)

Congratulations pc73. The refreshed Vento is indeed looking good. Would have preferred the blue but then again its a personal preference.

Have loads of fun riding. Wish you a happy ownership. Do keep the thread updated with your experiences.
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Old 30th November 2012, 13:02   #15
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Default re: VW Vento TDI Highline 2012 refresh (1st service Update)

@PC73 : Many congratulations for you new car.
Wish you many happy mile munching and troublefree service from the Vento.

As for the headlight upgrade I think Osram NB+ or Philips Xtreme Vision would be sufficient. Please check with your dealer about the warranty before changing to relays etc.

I believe that Vento has the best internal fittings, never heard any complain with the quality of internal plastics from any Vento owner.

Enjoy your car and drive safe.

Post pictures of the interiors.

Last edited by Sommos : 30th November 2012 at 13:05.
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