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Old 4th May 2008, 15:01   #1
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Default pajero 2.8 - 4000 kms ownership review.

Hi friends,

Based on suggestions from fellow TBHPians I am writing my Review on the Pajero 2.8 ownership .

Flash back.

I had a Skoda Octavia which had done 81000 kms. Till 75000 things were a dream with the car . Good mileage, good pickup, good speeds etc etc . At 75000 kms Clutch failed – hole in the pocket 45000/- , at 78000 a/c Failed HIP – 24000/- , at 80000 Power steering failed HIP-18000/- only for service. Got really pissed off and sold it for 5.5 lacs. As you can see the cost of service and repairs alone on the car is more than Rs 1/- Km.

RECENT PAST:

Was in the market for an SUV to replace skoda. Had a look at landcruiser prado 2000 model with auto transmission cost – 17 lacs . asked my SUV literate friend to have a look . He Said “ Kitteve poogathey ( don’t even go near) . Go buy a pajero instead. It does not have electronics, has a body built like a tank and the engine will last 300000 kms “. Went and had a look and that’s it. Fell in love with the thing. Dint even bother to have a look at the competition. My other friend who owns a quarry fell prostrate in front of the car ( I was wondering why he is worshiping the car) measured the clearance from the floor and gave the go ahead. ( the first thing he does when he sees any vehicle. )

Negotiated the discount – 30000 cash + sun film + rear panel paint or tyre upgrade.

Settled for an all cash deal of 55000/- booked the car in December asked to be delivered in January ( for the benefit of the model in RC book) and took delivery in january. Colour ice berg.

I had no clue that a new model was coming in 2 months time.

PRESENT:

Age – 4 months
Odo – 3870 ( all done by me . Drivers are currently allowed to clean and park only)

Exterior

I liked the shape . It is very nondescriptive and a Hard core unrefined offroader look . A lay man on the road wont give a second look ( the colour scheme adds to the disinterest . They must be thinking that I drove away with a half painted car.) . The knowledgeable do not stop staring. The stock tubed tyres Bridgestone 235/75R15 looks pathetic with huge gaps between them and the wheel arch . I upgraded to Michelin LTX/AT 31 X10.5 X 15. I wish they had provided a 16” rim. Cost 15000/- with buy back of old tyres. Had to discard the stepheny cover though. The foot rest is just for the namesake . not very practical. Old people cannot get into the car ( We had to literally push an aunt of mine into the car.)
Head lights are not good for speed above 100 on the highways . Need to upgrade though I have not done it yet. Browsing the auto lighting thread.

Interior


Very basic and business like with two tone leather upholstery and see through head rests which look sophisticated. The front seats are great with adjustable lumbar support and side support. The middle row seats are for two only if the side arm rests are opened. Very basic and does not feel luxurious. They could have done better for such a costly car. 3rd row seats are better left to the kids. The dashboard looks the way it should be. Rugged and off roader like . No bottle holders in the car though it has glass holders??? . How can you have a glass without a bottle?? . The multimeter has a thermometer which shows a wrong reading and an altimeter and incline / tilt meter.

ICE in the car has a Kenwood DPX-MP5100U dual din CD receiver with a provision for auxillary input and a USB port. The speakers – 4 nos of magnets on a metal frame with a paper stuck on top. I wish they had not provided any ICE in the car instead of providing such insulting speakers for a premium car. I Changed it to JBL components in the front (GTO507C) and JBL ovals at the rear (GTO 937)

A/C leaves us sweating in summer when the setting is in econo .It has to be in the A/C position for good cooling. The front blower is noisy at high RPM. The rear blowers are very convenient and it has a 2 way switch to turn on and off. In the A/C position you will feel cold.

The horn switch is badly positioned in the middle of the steering . You get a sore thumb in the city conditions or to avoid it you have to move your palm to the middle of the steering. Which is very inconvenient .

The driving position is superb. You have a clear view of the road and obstacles ahead. Driving in the city is a breeze. Again thanks to the cockpit view. Road users also tend to give you more respect.

Engine noise level inside the cockpit is slightly more compared to a scorpio.



ABS and AIRBAGS

Has ABS and Airbags, all four disk brakes with drum parking brake. Is the ABS working. Oh yes I checked it though involuntarily. I was cruising on the city road when a Indica Taxi cut across in front of me. I panicked ( it’s a new car man c’mon ) and stood on the pedals. Did it stop? WOW The resulting chatter surprised me and scared the hell out of the indica driver. He stopped the car in the middle of the road and came to inspect the damage. He could not believe that nothing happened. He checked and rechecked and after both of us exchanged some pleasantries about his service v/s my age and what would have happened to me if I had touched his car both of us went our ways . Did I test the air Bags ? *$%^!@

The power train , ride and handling

The engine roars to life and waits to be tested. The sheer sound of the engine races your heart. Very good torque. It pulls well and suddenly speeds flatten out. You had it if are trying to show some one on the highways who is boss. You will have a tough fight on the straits and once the bad patches come he had it. The car floats through on the rough roads. You will be surprised at the way it maintains its composure along with yours. You don’t need to bother about the road condition. Just keep driving. Steering is very light . It is lighter than skoda and innova. Does not let you feel the bulk of the car. Gear shift is ok . 1st to 2nd feels hard but further up is very smooth. The car could have done with a 6th gear for highways. At about 120 the engine noise is quite high. Stability and cornering are very good and you feel safe. Could do speeds of 100 – 110 on the ECR road curves. I had touched a top speed of 130 kms. The car is very convenient to handle at about 110 to 120.

Waiting to join one of the OFF roading meets in Chennai.

Mileage
High speed diesel – 6 to 7 kms average

***

Very mediocre – Screwed up the alignment at 1000kms service and could not solve a small knocking sound in the mechanics of the car.

BUILD QUALITY

Needs betterment. Wonder how HM cannot even put a proper bolt in the right way. There is a knocking in the steering / suspension which the dealer is not able to trace even after 2 visits.


Cost of spares – yet to know

Warranty – 1 year or 20000 kms. Again insulting the car – I have taken an extended warranty of another 1 year or 20000 kms for a cost of 11000/-

Overall
Love the car. I had got sick of driving a car in the city. But after this I just cant stop driving. I really love the car when on single lane roads where you can put one side of the wheels on the margins or slightly beyond without even batting an eyelid or slowing a vee bit irrespective of the marigin condition. One innova once tried following me on the margins and I dint see the car again. My dad dint like the car though . He is wondering why I paid 9 lacks more than an INNOVA when the ride is not as smooth as an Innova. I showed him the small stick beside the gear lever and the gap underneath the chassi. He is still not convinced. But this is not for the oldies right?

VALUE FOR MONEY

At About 15 lacs it would have been a runaway success.

shall post some pictures soon.

Last edited by ajmat : 4th May 2008 at 17:12.
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Old 5th May 2008, 13:26   #2
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Great review, Vijay, and one that will help many potential buyers. You are spot-on with most points. I am glad you got a recent model, since ABS wasn't offered in the early days.

Quote:
The car could have done with a 6th gear for highways. At about 120 the engine noise is quite high.
Agreed. The low gear ratios boost its off-roading prowess and urban driveability, but are a pain on the highway.
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Old 5th May 2008, 13:51   #3
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Probably the best pure breed SUV this side of 20 lakhs. I can't imagine any of the others (Ford, Honda, Suzuki) being able to do Off-Roading as well as the Pajero. Shame its sold for a higher price with poor QC. Its actually an outdated model that's sold here.

Valid points about the vehicle. Enjoy her.
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Old 5th May 2008, 13:59   #4
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Very good honest review, as you said if only HM positioned it @ couple of lakhs less.
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Old 5th May 2008, 14:01   #5
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A well written straight from the heart review.

How about some pictures?
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Old 5th May 2008, 14:29   #6
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Great post. Read it fully in a breath
Always loved the pajero.. Agree that looks are subjective, however, I dare to say that it is one of the best looking SUVs (a true SUV) on our roads. Love the two-tone finish and the understated looks
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Old 5th May 2008, 15:17   #7
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Great review Vijay. I am seeing a lot of Pajeros after the new model launch. It seems to be doing well.
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Old 5th May 2008, 15:32   #8
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A really great & to the point review. Also loved the subtle humour.
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Old 5th May 2008, 15:42   #9
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Wonderful, straight-from-the-heart review, vijay shekar !!!

Waiting eagerly for the pics, do post them soon.

Also, I am interested in knowing how the steering feel is when driving in off-road conditions. Do post your thoughts once you take the Pajero offroad.


Quote:
Originally Posted by vijay shekar View Post
...The speakers – 4 nos of magnets on a metal frame with a paper stuck on top.....
This conveys very well your frustration with the existing ICE setup

Quote:
Originally Posted by vijay shekar View Post
......He checked and rechecked and after both of us exchanged some pleasantries about his service v/s my age and what would have happened to me if I had touched his car both of us went our ways . ...
I can imagine the way the conversation would have gone
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Old 5th May 2008, 15:50   #10
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very well written report sir,sure pajero is one tough car,i simply like the shape of the pajero.please post some pics of your car.
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Old 5th May 2008, 15:58   #11
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A nice review. Made me chuckle when you described about ICE, 'small stick' and sorts

I thought it gave 10kmpl atleast.
Extended sure is costly. If I remember right someone else at TBHP didnt opt for it as HM service isnt good.

And didnt expect it to be noisy at high speeds:(

And loved the numbers when it comes to Skoda maintenance !
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Old 5th May 2008, 16:06   #12
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Fantastic report Vijay! Though being in Chennai one would have thought the service support would be somewhat better.
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Old 5th May 2008, 16:17   #13
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Very candid review and very interesting to read as well. Thanks for sharing. I have had a crush on Pajero for quite some time but not moving forward for some of the reasons that you have mentioned (noisy engine beyond 100, uncomfortable seating on middle row for three etc).

Quote:
Originally Posted by vijay shekar View Post
Hi friends,
The stock tubed tyres Bridgestone 235/75R15 looks pathetic with huge gaps between them and the wheel arch .
The new version has 265/70/R15.

Quote:
The foot rest is just for the namesake . not very practical. Old people cannot get into the car. Head lights are not good for speed above 100 on the highways
SFX (new version) seems to have wider footboards although I haven't verified it myself. It also has new headlamp cluster.

Quote:
Rugged and off roader like . No bottle holders in the car though it has glass holders??? . How can you have a glass without a bottle??
Probably its for the soft drink cans.


Quote:
My dad dint like the car though . He is wondering why I paid 9 lacks more than an INNOVA when the ride is not as smooth as an Innova. I showed him the small stick beside the gear lever and the gap underneath the chassi. He is still not convinced. But this is not for the oldies right?
Innova is for those who are practically inclined, others buy Safari, Endy or Pajero.

Quote:
At About 15 lacs it would have been a runaway success.
Can't agree more. At that price HM will have waiting list.
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Old 5th May 2008, 16:20   #14
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very nice write up. Is 6-7 the average mileage for a Pajero?
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Old 5th May 2008, 16:32   #15
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Excellent review vijay & also a very candid one. I suppose, by default pajero comes with a 4WD option. Did you do any offroading yet??

Are there any comparable differences between the new model & the earlier ones???

How are the maintenance costs with the Pajero??? For the cars, HM have reduced the costs on spares. Not sure on the SUVs.
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