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Old 11th August 2009, 14:41   #1
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Default Initial ownership report Toyota Corolla Altis-1.8G/Silver

After much of test driving finally decided to buy a Toyota this time! A departure from Honda! I booked the car (Altis 1.8G/Silver/10.98 ex showroom) on 7th July! Finally laying hands on the most trusted automobile brand. The choice for color is very straight forward as I do not wash cars regularly. (This is one of my ways of nature conservation!)

The car was supposed to be delivered in 5 days at the earliest to 20 days at the latest! It seems this particular model/color has more waiting period! My car was supposed to be arriving at the next lot from the factory! But it did not arrive as expected by end of the week; the dealer promised it will be arriving soon and they will get the car to me by 25th! And finally it arrived on 23rd or so, got registered on 24th & was to be delivered on 25th July! The wait has been painful! Especially as I was getting more attached to my outgoing City while my Son was eager to have the Altis! Btw you will see me brining comparison of City to kindly bear with me!

On the day, we arrived at Nandi a little after 3PM as the sun film & parking sensor job had to be completed before taking the delivery! As we entered the showroom, we could see the car gleaming in the soft lighting from evening Sun! The sales person gave a demo on every feature of the car! Finally after signing of few papers we were handed over the key ceremonially by the manager!

Got sun film fixed all around – front V-Kool V70/heat rejection 54%/visible light transmission 70% (Rs.11500), sides & rear 3M CR70/heat 50%/light 70% (Rs 9700). In the past I had only got side windows sun filmed, this is the first time doing it all around! And it works nice! Now the heat inside the car is much lower than in the case of my earlier car!

Parking sensor cost Rs4000. Looks like I need to get this recalibrated, shows zero when the gap is about half ft. From the dealership I got floor mats, bumper protector, foot step garnish, mud flaps free! & 20K corporate discount.

The car had 60 km on the odo and showed 8.1 kmpl as average consumption! It seems the testing at Toyota plant and then at the dealer as part of PDI comes to this km, though I found it bit higher! (My earlier car had just 22km when I took delivery!) Anyway all the readouts were set to zero (except odo of course!) and we started off, by the time it was 6; 30 pm! On the way we filled some gas(they fill just enough to get you colser home!) by the time I reached home say about 15km or so, the av. fuel consumption had steadily gone up from 8.1 to 9.5!

The overall dealership experience was good! Not that extraordinary as expected! Could see lot of cost cutting measures! There was a box of napkin! Even the tape that they decked the car with was short (only on bonnet!) the floor mat was covered with a carton box paper! (Come on Toyota!). A box of chocolates, some car perfume & a decent foot paper would have cost Toyota or its dealer nothing more than couple of 100s!

  • 4 cylinder inline, 79mm bore, 91.5mm stroke, 1794 cc, 1ZZ-FE engine 132 ps @ 6000 rpm, 17.3 kgm @ 4200 rpm
  • Instrument pod with analogue type temperature (why?) & fuel gage. Illuminates when ignition is turned on. Warning signs include driver/passenger side airbag including audio alarm, door ajar with visual indication of door! 2 trip meter & odo Multi information display with outside temperature, time, fuel range, instantaneous & average fuel consumption, time & distance
  • Steering control for MID & ICE
  • ICE with 6 speakers, 6 CD changer with aux in & remote (which brand? Guess Panasonic)
  • Driver seat height adjustment Telescopic adjustment/tilt adjustment for steering Dead pedal for foot rest
  • Lots of cubby holes all around, 2 cup holder on front & driver arm rest with 2 storage compartments Twin glove box
  • Electrically adjustable & foldable RVMs with turn indicators
  • Fog lamps
  • Alloys (all 5)/Bridgestone
Experience/Good bits:
Overall styling of the car is much better than the previous generation! Rear LED lamp looks great but then they are bikers delight! Looks great from all angles except for side view, looks like any other taxi from the side! Panel gaps are uniform all around. Door open wide and feels heavy.

Inside it is very spacious. Generous leg room all around, rear leg space is good (slightly lower than civic I guess). Boot is large enough @ 475 lit compared to 500 on NHC but 60:40 folding seat makes up for it.

The driver seat has just enough support, travel and adjustment for height. Steering has tilt/telescopic adjustments, this translates to a better driving position and good all round visibility! A pillar does not intrude while taking right turn (unlike in NHC).

Steering feel is good but the leather is bit too smooth for my liking and being large it feels flimsy too. Steering mounted controls are a great boon! Watch out while turning so as not to touch these controls!

Always illuminated instrument panel looks great! Visual clue for door ajar is of great help. Fuel consumption meter is of importance too! Now you know how much your driving style cost you in terms of fuel! (I hope they make it mandatory for all cars, at least an idle time/fuel counter which will help all those at the signal to switch off instead of honking!)

Center console look good in overall layout! I am not in awe of wood finish though, but it does not hurt, better than silver! All the switch buttons seems bit flimsy and small to operate! Climate control is of great use. Now I do not have to switch off AC when driving alone and AC chillness start biting!

Passenger seat belt warning is a good feature but sometime it does not work?

Twin glove box is a useful and twin storage box under the driver arm rest is large enough to swallow all the CD’s you may want to carry! Lots of cubby holes & storage spaces- cup holders in center console, by the side of console box, near the steering wheel, bottle holders on all doors etc.

Fully retracting door glass all around with auto up/down feature on driver side!

ABC’s have good spacing with a useful dead pedal! Does the clutch travel is too much? Gear shift is not as smooth as Honda! Sometime it is bit notchy especially on reverse gear!

Illuminated key ring is a nice touch again! Need bit longer cranking as compared to City! It takes few seconds for initial check and off you go with a sudden burst of torque! Low end torque is good, a gentle touch on accelerator send the rpm meter racing! Right now I am confined within 2500 rpm that equals to about 90 kmph! At this speed the car feels very stable, good steering feel! Does not unsettle on rough roads! In cabin noise is very less but need to see how this changes at high speeds!

For such a huge car, it is very drivable in the city, only if the turning radius has been like NHC! All round visibility is very good, though you might feel bit myopic while reversing! Rearview mirror is small (cost?) but the auto antiglare feature is very good.

Need to improve:
Gear box – shift can be improved especially the reverse gear!
Door lock should be reprogrammed with ignition switch rather than speed! Turning radius – though is not bad, I am comparing it with NHC!
Control stalks should be wee bit closer to the steering wheel for better reach
Can not find the usefulness of Sunglass holder! Can’t close it with sunglass and can’t keep it open with sunglass as it blocks rear view mirror!
Switches on center console- feels too weak! Too many buttons on the ICE also!
While the tone of turn indicator is good, increasing the volume a bit would be really good. Also I guess the tone is from the solenoid unlike the cars in US which have a nice audible tone for turn signals!

It is a 2 weeks now and has covered about 500 kms mostly between home & office. Avg kmpl has come up to 11.9! Driving experience is good, very comfortable in the city! Happy with the mileage (75% on ring road with AC on always, I am getting 11.9 avg). Huge humps in the city are not a bother anymore; they do not scrape the underbody! No need to change CD’s frequently, no need to switch off AC when the chillness bites, do get scared when any biker approaches though! Changed my office root a bit (5 km longer) to avoid meeting too many bikers riding on the pavement near Whitefield area! (Gosh are they on a suicidal pact?) So far it is working well with no scratches!
I will post update next month after 1st service!
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Old 11th August 2009, 14:53   #2
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Congratulations on your wonderful car. Perhaps the ribbons should come out now.
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Old 11th August 2009, 14:56   #3
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Congrats buddy for the Altis. Its a good car by all standards.
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Old 12th August 2009, 00:14   #4
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Thumbs up Good Choice

Good choice buddy. I'm sure you would enjoy the experience of owning a Toyota.

I'm sure you would feel good when you take it for servicing. In Chennai, we can find competent service advisors who spend enough time with you to understand the problem. At the end of the day, the problem/concern is sorted out. I'm sure it is the same elsewhere in India.

Safe driving.
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Old 12th August 2009, 01:46   #5
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Good choice buddy.The car looks really great and I love the wood trim. Congrats !
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Old 12th August 2009, 07:27   #6
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Congrats . Nice Car. Enjoy the Ride. And , isnt the AmbiPur Air Freshner fitted Upside Down?? The liquid might leak out if you fit it that way.
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Old 13th August 2009, 20:47   #7
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Hey Undead, it is a nice catch! It was so just when I took that photo and corrected it immediately! Thx
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Old 13th August 2009, 22:00   #8
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@ Gany. Crisp review and excellent choice of a vehicle. The ownership as with all things Toyota will be completely hasslefree and the car is probably going to outlive you
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Old 14th August 2009, 00:07   #9
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Great! she looks cool! And what brilliant photograph that was taking the pic from the cars underside
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Old 16th August 2009, 19:32   #10
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Best Car Under 12L. Congrats. The Car looks cool in Silver.
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Old 16th August 2009, 20:29   #11
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Beautifully written and wonderful pics to compliment the same. The instrument cluster looks lovely.
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Old 16th August 2009, 20:57   #12
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Nice car, Amazing space and instrument cluster.

<ot> Your ambipur perfume cartridge is inverted, The liquid may leak and damage what it falls on. </ot>
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Old 16th August 2009, 21:31   #13
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Nice review, Great Car, Good choice

Congratulations !!

Do not worry about re-calibrating the reverse parking sensor
the system fitted in my car also behaves similarly.
It is good to show zero when still there is some space.
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Old 17th August 2009, 00:20   #14
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congrats gany!
the altis is a beautiful car and it looks tough too.
its my favorite and gonna be my next car(after a couple of yrs)
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Old 17th August 2009, 11:00   #15
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nice review. Good choice of the car + Color + accessories.

Good Photographs.

Corolla has been my fav for a long time now. Am keeping one of the pic of your car in my screensaver list of cars. (hope its okay with you)
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