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Old 18th October 2007, 15:21   #1
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Smile OPTRA MAGNUM 1000 Km report

Model -Optra Magnum LS.
Color - Platinum metallic.
Purchase date - oct 4.
OTR price - 9.91 L
Freebies - accesoroes worth 4k.
Extra fittings till date - Reverse parking sensors, exchanged the HU for a sony with aux in.

Intial impressions.

The delivery process was smooth and on time. But driving down after the delivery in to the night , I felt something wrong with the ride, it was too bumpy. I found out that the tyre pressure was too high, corrected it and the ride is better. Then I started feeling rhythmic light jerks or taps on the steering wheel on turning the car , also felt the tyre noise was too high. Had these complaints file during the 1000 Km check up. They say the slight tapping is felt in all magnums.

The interiors are spacious and enough luxurious. But only driver has the lumbar adjustment seat, which we feel is a bad deal. Planning to modify the seat or even to buy a new seat, this since me and my wife travel almost 3 hours every day.

Some of the switches, like the window power switches has a very light plasticky feel, otherwise the quality is excellent.Nice little cubby holes for the stuff, also the drivers armrest and foot rest is very relaxing on longer drives.

Ride is very much composed, suspension absorbs most of the jerks but doesnt seem to be very soft translating to a bit of noise while suddenly falling in to a pothole.

Handling is nothing much to write about, I found the grip to be better at about 80 Km or below.
The low end torque is just about awesome, doesnt need many gear shifts. The straight line speed is amazing. The clutch is on heavier side, ahd them lubricate it at 1000, still doesnt impress. Brakes are good enough at speeds below 100. didnt try hard braking till now, but if GM had offered optional ABS and airbags at extra cost i would ve bought , the LT model is way too expensive and leather seats and trims etc , i didnt want.

FE - got 12. 95 at the first fill, that was a 622 km interval, 60% open roads and rest town commutes. Will be doing my second fill later in the day and will keep posted.

The head lights seem to be bit inadequate, but havent done too many Kms at nights yet.
Planning to get a customised seat cover with leather in the contact portions shortly.
The big capacity fuel tank makes it easier to keep away from fuelling too frequently, a boon for me.

Guys, anything else you want to know ask me
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Old 18th October 2007, 15:35   #2
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Forgot to add that the OE speakers are way too average. Some one serious about music should be looking at upgrading, but my budget doesnt let me do that right away.
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Old 18th October 2007, 15:41   #3
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Congrats. Is this a diesel.

Today I did see a new Optra Diesel going in front of me at 5 kmph in traffic. Had a good look and I now find the rear lights absolutely beautiful. The front is somewhat different. But anyway Optra was always renowned for its good looks and decent petrol performance but with slightly low FE. But that problem has been hopefully sorted out with the diesel. Regarding the clutch, I think that is a perennial problem (I have a Corsa) but one gets used to it. The characteristic feature of older Corsa and Optra was they get better after 30-40 kmph and are pretty noiseless at high speeds upto 90-100 kmph (rarely go beyond that).
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Old 18th October 2007, 15:45   #4
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yes, vasudeva, it is a diesel. Yeah, regarding the clutch i had two opels earlier and this one is actually way better than those!
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Old 18th October 2007, 15:53   #5
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Perhaps they should now consider an AT to compete with Skoda in that spec also. GM is an American company, and making and fitting an AT should hardly be a bother for them.
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Old 18th October 2007, 16:01   #6
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Great decision taken in picking up the Optra diesel. The torque on that car is so addictive. I couldnt stop pushing it to the limit during my TD. The car is great value with lots of features. I didnt like the front looks initially but I now it seems fine. The interiors give you a very very upmarket feel. Do keep us updated regularly and especially I am very keen to know how GM service is in your part of the country.
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Old 19th October 2007, 08:49   #7
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I did a refill y day and the FE is same 12.9. reagrding GM SERVICE, this is infact our third car from GM stable. The earlier ones were corsa. We were so happy with the service wityh our firat one that it was THE major reason iwent on to buy one more. But later the quality dipped, with complaints being just patched up and unattended many times. There in started my tussle with them and finally the customer care section intervened and they made sure i was made happy. But many times the slow arrival of spares ddidnt help. The result is that many of the guys including managers at the GM in kochi are now good friends and they really take care of it now! They admit that service quality had dipped and they are making amends now.
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Old 19th October 2007, 10:46   #8
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When I did the TD (a short one around the Bangalore indoor stadium and cubbon park), the clutch gave me an unpleasant tapping feedback. I asked the sales person and he said that it is usual for all Optra Magnum diesel. I didn't want to believe it. But I wanted to confirm from others. Is it the case with your Optra diesel?
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Old 19th October 2007, 11:24   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by arunk View Post
I did a refill y day and the FE is same 12.9. reagrding GM SERVICE, this is infact our third car from GM stable. The earlier ones were corsa. We were so happy with the service wityh our firat one that it was THE major reason iwent on to buy one more. But later the quality dipped, with complaints being just patched up and unattended many times. There in started my tussle with them and finally the customer care section intervened and they made sure i was made happy. But many times the slow arrival of spares ddidnt help. The result is that many of the guys including managers at the GM in kochi are now good friends and they really take care of it now! They admit that service quality had dipped and they are making amends now.
In fact with my Corsa, the biggest grouse is non availability of parts almost everytime there is a need, and the inconsistent service. Even when Corsa was in production, parts were an issue. If GM has to succeed, service must improve, because that is what makes a repeat customer. Further, with blogs and better communication, bad reports travel fast.

PS: Since you have a corsa, I have a query. My Corsa now has 37K on the odo. The ride was very good till around some months back. However, for 3-4 months, I hired a driver (commuting 70 kms every day). Perhaps it is a coincidence that the ride and smoothness has declined, and more noise and bumps are felt. Should I get wheel alignment/balancing (tyres are OK but will tyre change help), and shockers checked. Suspension was checked and corrected sometime back. Would appreciate your reply. I intend to keep the car for another 1-2 yrs and so feel some sort of investment can be made in improving the ride and smoothness.
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Old 19th October 2007, 11:55   #10
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Hey Vasudeva, first of all do accept my heart-felt sympathies with regards to that accident your Corolla met with on the fateful downpouring night few weeks ago. I just cant believe how people can be so callous and irresponsible, ending up destroying other's property. Sorry to hear about it. I meant to write in that thread but somehow it just missed. I am sure the Mods will allow this little offtopic misdemeanour of mine.

Mods, again sorry to go OT. Regarding this particular query, I faced a similar trouble in my Tata Indigo LX at around 42-44K kms. My ride quality declined and more noise and bumps were felt. There was even a little quiver felt in the steering beyond 80kmph along with a slight bubbling in the ride. I was running on JK Tyres 175x65x14.

I even got wheel alignment / balancing / rotation duly done but to no avail. Was later advised that since my Indigo is a heavier than normal car the tyres go kaput sooner, also that JK Tyres are not too great in terms of quality (however the tread in my tyres did seem a little worn out, primarily due to me being slack in doing the rotation regularly, however the tread in the middle part of the tyres looked like it could last another 5000 odd kms or so). I got all four tyres replaced (since I didnt want to take any risks in terms of safety) to Bridgestones 185x65x14 Tubeless and it now handles and rides like a dream.

You might wanna get the tyres checked, although I must say that 37k on the odo seems a little too soon, however even the 42k in my case was soon enough too, so you never no. Hope this helps.

Mods please excuse the OT diversion.

regards,


Quote:
Originally Posted by vasudeva View Post
PS: Since you have a corsa, I have a query. My Corsa now has 37K on the odo. The ride was very good till around some months back. However, for 3-4 months, I hired a driver (commuting 70 kms every day). Perhaps it is a coincidence that the ride and smoothness has declined, and more noise and bumps are felt. Should I get wheel alignment/balancing (tyres are OK but will tyre change help), and shockers checked. Suspension was checked and corrected sometime back. Would appreciate your reply. I intend to keep the car for another 1-2 yrs and so feel some sort of investment can be made in improving the ride and smoothness.

Last edited by HSV : 19th October 2007 at 12:00. Reason: forgot to add a little point
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Old 19th October 2007, 12:07   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by vasudeva View Post
Perhaps they should now consider an AT to compete with Skoda in that spec also. GM is an American company, and making and fitting an AT should hardly be a bother for them.
Not only that, but the fact that the petrol optra used to come with a A/T may just make the process easier for them. By the way I had raised this query with GM customer service a few months back around the time the Magnum D was launched. And surprisingly enough instead of denying it due to lack of official announcement like what the others normally do they emailed me saying that YES they were indeed considering launching an automatic optra maugnum diesel soon (didnt say when though).

I even posted the excerpts of that email on TBHP in one of the treads related to the Magnum, cant remember which/when. So its definitely on the cards.
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Old 19th October 2007, 12:38   #12
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Optra 1.8AT did not succeed primarily because it drove on petrol and gave very low FE (heard of figures of 6-7 from some). I was considering Optra AT but gave up because of this.

Since our friend here is getting close to 13 in Optra Diesel manual, Diesel AT should give around 11-12 under most conditions which on a diesel is less than Rs. 3/km. Unfortunately, AT is not a priority for most manufacturers in India, and so even if GM customer service writes a email, that is not for certain. Why: because consumers do not even think about AT, leave alone at least considering it. I did fortunately and that is the best decision I made.
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Old 25th October 2007, 01:36   #13
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Originally Posted by arunk View Post
Guys, anything else you want to know ask me
Hi

I am getting the delivery of Optra Magnum Diesel LT tommorow. I was just wondering if you did anything special to break-in the engine like maintain RPMS or speeds ? Also what fuel are you using regular or Premium ? You reply will be of great help

thanks
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Old 28th October 2007, 18:44   #14
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I kept engine below 2.5 RPM, avoided hard breaking as much as possible, used premium fuel, first two refills i used reliance now switched to speed just because of proximity of the pump. I will post any change in FE shortly
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Old 29th October 2007, 00:58   #15
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Thanks ArunK for your reply.

I got the magnum 2 days ago. I already done about 400 Kms. Man what a car. I simply love the pick up and suspension. I never felt the need to rev the engine to more than 2K. I somehow suspect that it does not like the premium brew (BP Hi Speed) . When I took delivery i used regular (HP) and the pick up was much crisper. With premium I though the engine became a little sluggish. No smoke in either case. Do post your observations. Thanks
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