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Old 5th June 2014, 13:57   #286
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Default Re: The 2014 Fiat Linea Facelift - Test Drive & Review

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Originally Posted by desdemona View Post
Hi RacerAsh.
You know, I am always a bit bewildered by the criticism the Linea faces for lacking rear legroom and therefore comfort, though the scooped-out rear of the front seats have added to the knee-room at the back a lot in the new Linea.
The scooped out seats is not something absolutely new to the 2014 , they had done that in the 2013 relaunch as well atleast for the T-Jet , and while it makes a difference it is not too much , the downside to the scooping is that the rear seat pockets are quite tight resulting in certain items not even going in. Like a bottle - i guess if i really try i can squeeze it in but rather not risk tearing the leather. Round bottle that is.

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Originally Posted by desdemona View Post
Hi.

The much commented upon shorter, stubbier driver's armrest is, on the whole, a welcome change, though at a slight expense.


The earlier one was ergonomically poor other than on open gear-change-free highway stretches: it would majorly impede comfortable gear shifts. Which is why I keep it hinged out of the way most times on my 2010 Linea. The new one is short enough to solve that problem, and still pretty usable as a driver's armerest, once you get used to its positioning and dimensions, as any owner will pretty easily.

Cheers
I beg to differ , when i was operating the gears with the arm rest down , my elbow kept slipping off it because it was that small , but yes the provision for the holder is a plus. Anyway , really a minor point either way.


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Originally Posted by desdemona View Post
Hi fellow T-jet owners.

What is the availibility of Fiat-branded accessories at your dealership? I ask because my local dealer doesn't stock too much more than keychains and car perfume.

Not that I want to pimp my near-complete, all-round ride with spoilers etc, but Fiat's missing a trick if they're not getting ALL their dealers to stock a full range of accessories.
Kashyap Okhla had a lot of accessories when i asked last - i got my T-Jet door sills from there , they have keychains , pillow , tshirts , small model cars , coasters , visiting card holders and mugs as well. Even Kashyap noida has them.

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Originally Posted by sandeepmohan View Post
Oh boy. It is much easier on my car. Two small pull straps behind the head rests and that's it, the seat flips forward.
Same in mine , thank god!
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Old 5th June 2014, 14:43   #287
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Default Re: The 2014 Fiat Linea Facelift - Test Drive & Review

No discounts on the new Linea yet? I had talks with one of Fiat's SA last week and he promised me a best case loyalty bonus on 20k on the new Linea. NO other discounts whatsoever. He said that ~1 lacs discount can be availed on the pre face-lift model. Can anybody please confirm if the situation is same everywhere?
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Old 5th June 2014, 15:37   #288
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Default Re: The 2014 Fiat Linea Facelift - Test Drive & Review

Yes I believe it's the same here too, though if you're dogged maybe you'll also get an accessory or two thrown in? A bit too early for hefty discounts on the new Linea, wouldn't you say? ;-) The way I see it: the new Linea is great value, apart from just being a great car.

cheers
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Old 5th June 2014, 16:41   #289
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Default Re: The 2014 Fiat Linea Facelift - Test Drive & Review

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No discounts on the new Linea yet? I had talks with one of Fiat's SA last week and he promised me a best case loyalty bonus on 20k on the new Linea. NO other discounts whatsoever. He said that ~1 lacs discount can be availed on the pre face-lift model. Can anybody please confirm if the situation is same everywhere?
I was told the same when I visited Pandit Auto in April.
There are few folks who got the Tjet last month from Pune. They have given their experience on this thread. Maybe you could check with them.
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Old 9th June 2014, 10:48   #290
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Default Re: The 2014 Fiat Linea Facelift - Test Drive & Review

Are there any improvements to the Blue N Me implementation? What is really annoying in Blue N Me is the lack of any control of the usb storage drive from the head unit and the same cannot be accessed when the car is switched off.
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Old 9th June 2014, 13:12   #291
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Default Re: The 2014 Fiat Linea Facelift - Test Drive & Review

Took an extended test drive (drove for ~30 KMs and traveled in the rear seat for ~30KMs) of Linea T-jet 2014 on Saturday. Here are some of my observations based on comparison with my 2011 manufactured T-jet+.
  1. The power-delivery is much more linear than my car. While it's good for city driving as the turbo-lag was also less, and most users might prefer a linear power-delivery over the strong turbo-kick that 2011 versions gave. The turbo-addict in me missed the turbo-kick. It accelerates very well but that feeling of being pushed back in the seat and the torque steer are missing. Moreover, it seems to have been tuned for better fuel-efficiency. The car was driven through a mix of city and expressway traffic, and it was always driven without any concern for fuel-efficiency, still after 60 KMs it returned close to 9.4 KMPL, which I would say is good because my car under similar conditions would have returned ~7.5-8 KMPL.
  2. The clutch travel seemed shorter in the new T-jet. Perhaps it's the new car/clutch that made me feel the travel being shorter but it was definitely better than my car. Gear ratios and shift feel, didn't feel much different.
  3. Ride quality was excellent but at high-speeds, I felt less confident than I feel in Crusoe (my T-jet). Perhaps, a function of the extra 20 mm ground clearance. Taking a curve at high-speeds result in a very slight body-roll which is not the case with my car. My car feels more glued to the surface than what the new car felt. It might also be psychological as I have been driving my car for ~2.5 years/28,000 KMs, thus feel more confident in it than other cars. The increase in GC will definitely be useful on bad-stretches, and it doesn't make a significant difference within sane speeds. It's only when somebody will push the car to its limits, that they will feel the difference, and that too will be experienced more by a person that has driven the 2011 version. Compared to other cars in its segment, it's still head&shoulders above the rest when it comes to ride&handling.
  4. Interiors: There is a significant improvement in the interior design, however I feel that this design will suit the Punto more than Linea. They should have ideally gone for different designs on Linea and Punto. Punto looks sportier than Linea. The current design with the piano-black finish will suit the sportier Punto. The fabric lining on the center of dash is a nice touch but it might become a nightmare to maintain. I had once given my car for AC related work and it came back with a scratch on the dash, I dread to think what would have happened if this fabric lining would have been there.

    I prefer the tan shade in the 2011 version than the extremely light (almost grey) beige in the current versions. Maintaining this will be a pain and I personally find the tan more premium.

    Here's a pic of the interiors in my car.

    The 2014 Fiat Linea Facelift - Test Drive & Review-1dsc01664.jpg
  5. Arm-rest: What was Fiat thinking when they went for this shortened design? This new design is completely useless. It can be more useful for the passenger than the driver. I have a habit of resting my arm on the arm-rest and flicking the gears with my wrist. Can't do that with the new design. One can rest the elbow for a short while but it can not match the comfort of the previous arm-rest.
  6. Rear leg-room: It's almost similar to the earlier version. The contouring of the seat has released slightly more knee-room but nothing too significant. The seat was very comfortable and the excellent ride quality means that the head doesn't bump into the roof despite it being so close to the head. I think it's been projected to be worse than it actually is. It offers a very comfortable ride and adequate space for an average sized Indian. Rear leg-room has never been a key consideration for me, as I drive alone 70% of the time. Rear seat is mostly used by my dog and it only needs the comfortable seat, not the leg room.
  7. Exteriors: Let these two pics of my car do the talking.





A lot of these points are subjective and based on my observation. Some might agree, others might not. Anybody considering the new T-jet, should take a test-drive to understand whether it will match their personal preferences/taste. My note is directed more towards the owners of 2011 manufactured T-jets that's we aren't missing a lot. In fact, we might be the owners of best variant of T-jets launched till date.

Jokes apart, anyone in the market for a petrol sedan should definitely consider T-jet as an option. If one has loads of patience (to deal with FASS and take great care of the car) and a bit of enthusiasm (to drive and not be driven), T-jet is the car to go for.
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Old 9th June 2014, 14:50   #292
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Default Re: The 2014 Fiat Linea Facelift - Test Drive & Review

Hi Biraj. Thanks.

I agree that the older exterior styling somehow matches the character of this engine better. Guess Fiat were seeking newness and also a more 'premium' look (more chrome etc).

Have had the new T-jet long enough to report that cleaning the light beige fabric on the dash is easy precisely because it is a kind of technical fabric-wrap, rather than plastic.

Glad to hear about your observations about linearity of torque, fuel efficiency. Though I can understand you'd miss the kick of the sudden turbo-boost! ;-)

Like we were discussing on your ownership thread, I (owning three Fiats) have never felt the FASS to be as demanding of 'patience' and 'tolerance' as you have recently. Many of them are (more than?) adequate (enough?), IMO. And the cars themselves are reliable, and well put-together.

But yeah, you're right: if one has no time or energy to spare for the maintenance of the car, i.e., if one wants a super-appliance rather than something with character and identity and fun, then no, the Linea T-jet's not OK. For all others: it is a beauty and a joy, as I am currently discovering!

cheers
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Old 9th June 2014, 19:07   #293
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Default Re: The 2014 Fiat Linea Facelift - Test Drive & Review

Not at all , inadequate is what they are barring a few people specifically. So i empathize with Biraj without any disclaimers attached whatsoever. He and i have been in touch offline as well on the two issues facing our cars , and while the issues may be minor , or atleast mine - minor is the sense that it does not affect the drive factor of the car , Fiat needs to up its game in tis regard

With the numbers , or lack thereof , that they sell i would imagine they have all the bandwidth in the world to ensure that atleast their customer service is to the point of exceptional.

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Originally Posted by desdemona View Post

Like we were discussing on your ownership thread, I (owning three Fiats) have never felt the FASS to be as demanding of 'patience' and 'tolerance' as you have recently. Many of them are (more than?) adequate (enough?), IMO. And the cars themselves are reliable, and well put-together.
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Old 9th June 2014, 20:17   #294
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Default Re: The 2014 Fiat Linea Facelift - Test Drive & Review

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Not at all , inadequate is what they are barring a few people specifically.

With the numbers , or lack thereof , that they sell i would imagine they have all the bandwidth in the world to ensure that atleast their customer service is to the point of exceptional.
Well, maybe I am too indulgent, or plain lucky!

But seriously, 'exceptional' in the Indian ASS industry or service industry in general just does not exist.

The thing is: FASS is very good in some areas (warranty claims), adequate in some (routine servicing and repairs), improving in some (spares availibility) and still dodgy in others (complex diagnostics and repairs.)

Fiat India IS trying, they already are very responsive (the famous Mangesh etc) when things are escalated, much more so than most companies I feel. I say this from my own and others' experiences.

They, like their erstwhile partners, Tata, and their fellow European companies (Skoda, VW) have NO CHOICE but to continuously tighten up their sales and ASS game. Especially, the consistency of work across areas and dealers.

What they are guilty of, as of now, is too great unevenness and inconsistency: they go from great to lousy, adequate to unsatisfactory, depending on the city, the mechanic, the scope of work, the type of the FASS owner etc

Here in Gurgaon, I was never left unhappy by the Tata ASS for my old Palio and Linea, and while I wouldn't say I am delighted by the work of the new independent FASS, I am Ok with it for the type of work I have had, and am glad to see incremental improvements every time I check on them. A second ASS centre has just been opened here by a different dealer, which i welcome because I figure competition is good.

I for one, am confident that those incremental improvements will pickup, as and when sales numbers improve with the new Punto and Avventura. Nothing accounts for the good ASS of Maruti, Hyundai, Honda and Toyota so much as good sales per dealer/per ASS centre.

Meanwhile Mangesh & co have to keep working hard. This is a hard, unforgiving car market, and Fiat (not unlike several other companies) have a fair way to go to reach the status of 'exceptional'. No disagreements or hedging on that from me!
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Old 9th June 2014, 23:29   #295
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Default Re: The 2014 Fiat Linea Facelift - Test Drive & Review

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Originally Posted by sandeepmohan View Post
Are there any improvements to the Blue N Me implementation? What is really annoying in Blue N Me is the lack of any control of the usb storage drive from the head unit and the same cannot be accessed when the car is switched off.
The USB drive can now be controlled directly from the head unit, yes. Will get back to you on the second query.
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Old 10th June 2014, 10:39   #296
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Default Re: The 2014 Fiat Linea Facelift - Test Drive & Review

I do have to agree on the luck part - my experience with Skoda has shown that , a majority of people have always complained about the after sales but its coming up-to 3 years of ownership now with the Fabia and i am happy. But this is very very specific to one workshop only - i have never gone outside of this dealership.

They are good in warranty claims because the make money plain and simple and hence have the enthusiasm to expedite it. Next time you take a warranty claim they will ask you to sign a " work completed to my satisfaction" form right at the beginning , so they start claiming the money right from step 1. So this does not hold any weight with me

For the rest like you have written - adequate , improving and dodgy. Improving in spare parts yes it is important but that goes hand in hand with being able to do complex diagnostics - no point have 500 parts available if the working technicians dont know what is wrong with the car.

Forget complex even - if they cannot get the color of a bumper correct , which means that they took out the wrong code , mixed the wrong paints , failed to see the difference in color at the end and even while fixing it on the ca r- what do you do ? Inspires absolutely no confidence when you wish to go for a turbo , ECU level related problem.

Kudos to Mangesh , it would be a difficult job no arguments there and the few times i have contacted him he has been responsive. Have just had to do it again , lets see how that goes - the problem nevertheless is still at an on-ground level ; Mangesh might respond , a majority of the people onground will still do as they do.

Maybe i should try Gurgaon.

Quote:
Originally Posted by desdemona View Post
Well, maybe I am too indulgent, or plain lucky!

But seriously, 'exceptional' in the Indian ASS industry or service industry in general just does not exist.

The thing is: FASS is very good in some areas (warranty claims), adequate in some (routine servicing and repairs), improving in some (spares availibility) and still dodgy in others (complex diagnostics and repairs.)

Fiat India IS trying, they already are very responsive (the famous Mangesh etc) when things are escalated, much more so than most companies I feel. I say this from my own and others' experiences.

They, like their erstwhile partners, Tata, and their fellow European companies (Skoda, VW) have NO CHOICE but to continuously tighten up their sales and ASS game. Especially, the consistency of work across areas and dealers.

What they are guilty of, as of now, is too great unevenness and inconsistency: they go from great to lousy, adequate to unsatisfactory, depending on the city, the mechanic, the scope of work, the type of the FASS owner etc

Here in Gurgaon, I was never left unhappy by the Tata ASS for my old Palio and Linea, and while I wouldn't say I am delighted by the work of the new independent FASS, I am Ok with it for the type of work I have had, and am glad to see incremental improvements every time I check on them. A second ASS centre has just been opened here by a different dealer, which i welcome because I figure competition is good.

I for one, am confident that those incremental improvements will pickup, as and when sales numbers improve with the new Punto and Avventura. Nothing accounts for the good ASS of Maruti, Hyundai, Honda and Toyota so much as good sales per dealer/per ASS centre.

Meanwhile Mangesh & co have to keep working hard. This is a hard, unforgiving car market, and Fiat (not unlike several other companies) have a fair way to go to reach the status of 'exceptional'. No disagreements or hedging on that from me!
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Old 11th June 2014, 08:39   #297
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Default Re: The 2014 Fiat Linea Facelift - Test Drive & Review

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Took an extended test drive (drove for ~30 KMs and traveled in the rear seat for ~30KMs) of Linea T-jet 2014 on Saturday.
Most of us don't take a look at the engine.

When I saw the 2014 Linea Multi Jet, I noticed the air intake pipe running right up to the grill which is a good thing. Will feed in cooler, denser air. Is this modification the same for the 2014 T Jet? Previous generation T Jet has the air intake behind the head lamp. Less dust intake but performance takes a hit during hot summers cause its pulling in hot air circulated within the engine bay and there is less fresh air reaching that area.
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Old 11th June 2014, 16:39   #298
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Default Re: The 2014 Fiat Linea Facelift - Test Drive & Review

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Most of us don't take a look at the engine.

When I saw the 2014 Linea Multi Jet, I noticed the air intake pipe running right up to the grill which is a good thing. Will feed in cooler, denser air. Is this modification the same for the 2014 T Jet? Previous generation T Jet has the air intake behind the head lamp. Less dust intake but performance takes a hit during hot summers cause its pulling in hot air circulated within the engine bay and there is less fresh air reaching that area.
Missed out on checking under the hood. Blame it on my laziness and 47 C temperature outside. Perhaps @desdemona can share a pic of the engine bay as she owns a 2014 T-jet.
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Old 11th June 2014, 18:04   #299
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Default Re: The 2014 Fiat Linea Facelift - Test Drive & Review

The air intake is still behind the right hand side headlamp, yes, though I don't as yet notice any difference in performance because of the heat. Guess I'll only know when winter comes along, have had the car only over the heat of this season. What is the drop in performance you guys notice in the high summer? say 20%, or is it just marginal, noticed only by old T-jet hands?
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Old 11th June 2014, 18:22   #300
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Default Re: The 2014 Fiat Linea Facelift - Test Drive & Review

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What is the drop in performance you guys notice in the high summer? say 20%, or is it just marginal, noticed only by old T-jet hands?
Difficult to quantify but it's a significant drop. The mannerisms of the engine change during winters. The acceleration is smoother, and the car feels more eager to go fast. Wait for the winters and take it out for an early morning or late evening drive during that season. Your love for the T-jet will increase exponentially.
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