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Old 2nd May 2007, 14:47   #31
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Default Matiz owners test drive of Spark

Just took a short test drive in Spark. Car I test drove was LT model.
And I am glad to say that Matiz is back.

Here are some things which I disliked
  • Seats seem to be bit uncomfortable than current Matiz but thats may be because seats still had plastic cover on it.
  • Steering - Its completely circular looks bad and IMO is bit bigger than needed.
  • For some reason the handbrake warning lamp did not go off after releasing handbrake but it went off after starting car. I am unaware if the breaks retain their pressure till car is started and it isn't mentioned in broacher either.
  • The indicator and wiper stalks are great proof of cost cutting, they literally feel of cheap quality.
  • The AC was alright, it did not chilled cabin in my 2-3 km test drive but that is may be because Pune city is burning these days with temperatures around 40 deg
  • Car doesn't come with music system, my Matiz came with music system which isn't all that great but sufficient for average listener like me.


All these are very minor issues and could be easily solved by getting better seat covers, using sun film etc.


Here are things which I liked
  • Since its 4 cylinder engine it is smoother than Matiz's 3 cylinder one
  • Gear shift quality is improved since gears are not cable operated anymore
  • Engine has more power which means it is no longer slowed down after switching on AC
  • Handling is very precise and predictable
  • Same goes with breaking.
  • The interior space is huge compared to exterior size. And rear leg space is sufficient and dare I say better than that of Swift. (if not better then it is at the very least equal)

All the good things from Matiz have been retained. Which is a good thing because Matiz was a great car.
All in all on a very boring day on a very boring drive back home this car will bring smile on your face with its fantastic maneuverability and fun to drive factor.


Spark LT with ABS in Pune inside Octroi costs 484684 Rs. Which is expensive but it is easily justified by good qualities of Spark. Yes U-va base model is very close at this price but its base model, it will be expensive in maintenance and it doesn't have many toys and it surely won't have ABS.

Talera motors in Pune have already received 46 bookings out of coming lot of 50 cars. Booking cost is 30,000 Rs and they are also offering buy-back for existing Matiz.
For the record the salesgirl told that recently a blue colored 2003 fully loaded Matiz owner got 85,000Rs for it.


And the big question: Does centrally mounted speedo distract from driving?
Answer is NO. Within 2-3 minutes I felt comfortable with it and had no problem at all.

Last edited by adya33 : 2nd May 2007 at 14:49.
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Old 2nd May 2007, 15:29   #32
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As per today's (2/5) eco times, GM has SOLD more than 1100 Sparks in April. That is fantastic! Hope the production can match demans.
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Old 2nd May 2007, 20:14   #33
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nice review GTO. didn't know that SPARK costs so much.
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Old 2nd May 2007, 20:38   #34
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How does the Spark compare with the old Zen in terms of pick-up, top speed and handling? It seems both cars have similar specs (1.0 lit engine, 60 BHP).
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Old 2nd May 2007, 22:02   #35
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5 lac for top model !!! insane , or is it ???

the way i see it the move is economically sound , considering that GM has a limited production capability of 2000 Sparks a month till the summer of 2008 (thats what i read , do correct me if i'm wrong)
so obviously their aim would be to sell close to 2000 Sparks at the highest possible price ... with the insanely high price will they manage even 2000 ?? maybe not ... but hey .. it's market skimming ... high initial price for those who'll buy it anyway .. lower the price later ...

something obv made sense to GM ... my Q is ... why not wait till next summer for Spark release , at a 'competitive price' ??? small car mkt not getting any
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Old 3rd May 2007, 10:38   #36
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I had seen a pic of the Spark's steering wheel in an automag, and must say I didnt quite like the shape of the 2 spoke steering wheel. As adya mentioned, it also feels kinda big for the car.
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Old 3rd May 2007, 16:05   #37
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It seems, GM spark is successful afterall. 1000+ units in 2 cities for a start is excellent. As I said GM did play a good price card. Now they are making huge profits.
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Old 3rd May 2007, 17:18   #38
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Quote:
Originally Posted by iraghava View Post
Good point but problem is that the Swift Diesel right now has no direct competition whereas the Spark is being lauched in an end of the market where there is cut-throat competition. Look at how many rivals it has:

Zen Estilo, WagonR, Santro, Palio, Indica and due to their absurd pricing it has gone into the Swift, Getz, U-VA segment also.

How do you expect the car to suceed if the overall impression is that of over pricing & poor VFM? Secondly, apart from Novelty & Looks I don't really see a USP for the Spark. GM is already hyping that the car will give 27kmpl but we all know how true that is going to be.

A friend just TD'ed one today & came away unimpressed by the back seat space (cramped & only for 2 people according to him) and also another customer there told him that with discount he can get the Santro top model for around 3.80L. So he's now much more interested in the Santro over the Spark.
Great for competition (Hyundai,Maruti) You go & TD a Spark come out & make a beeline for Santro,Swift..Wow!! I think Hyundai,Maruti should cash on this & make a killing..GM is not listening, I guess..They never did.
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Old 3rd May 2007, 17:53   #39
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Quote:
Originally Posted by adya33 View Post
[*]For some reason the handbrake warning lamp did not go off after releasing handbrake but it went off after starting car. I am unaware if the breaks retain their pressure till car is started and it isn't mentioned in broacher either.
It's same in M800 and Alto too (atleast the one we own)
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Old 4th May 2007, 11:40   #40
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Question Is it really overpriced

This thread some how creates an impression that SPARK is overpriced. Following are price comparison of SPARK with Competitors from the Bangalore edition of TOI

With AC
SPARK - 3.32 Lakh
Estilo - 3.23 Lakh
WagonR - 3.30 Lakh
Santro - 3.31 Lakh

With AC + Power Steering
SPARK - 3.59 Lakh
Estilo - 3.53 Lakh
WagonR - 3.56 Lakh
Santro - 3.53 Lakh


From what I see there is not much price difference with the competitors Has TOI cleverly left out some other facts that has to be considered from the pricing point of view

BTW what is the boot space for the SPARK

Last edited by adya33 : 5th May 2007 at 09:29.
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Old 4th May 2007, 12:21   #41
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Quote:
From what I see there is not much price difference with the competitors Has TOI cleverly left out some other facts that has to be considered from the pricing point of view
TOI is actually TOA (Times of Advertorials). Let some member post on-road prices from Bangalore and then we will analyse.
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Old 4th May 2007, 12:28   #42
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Spark is a very good car but GM is not handling it well so far going by the prices. They should make it more attractive. Maybe they will offer big discounts like Aveo, Optra etc
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Old 4th May 2007, 15:35   #43
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does the speedometer/odometer placed centrally will be a distraction for the driver? whoever has done the test drive pls share your opinion on this.
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Old 4th May 2007, 16:11   #44
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Today I saw Spark on road........It looks ok but I personally feel that its too small car.............I doubt if 4 people can sit comfotable in it. I have not taken a test drive or sat inside yet so I am not sure but by looking at it it looks too small.
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Old 4th May 2007, 23:02   #45
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rlather View Post
Today I saw Spark on road........It looks ok but I personally feel that its too small car.............I doubt if 4 people can sit comfotable in it. I have not taken a test drive or sat inside yet so I am not sure but by looking at it it looks too small.
The boot is small but legroom and seats are k and can sit 2 adults comfortably at the rear seat.
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