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Old 14th September 2009, 18:32   #1
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Default Long-term review - Skoda Fabia 1.2 HTP With Pictures

Hi All, I bought my Fabia 1.3 HTP elegance in May this year. Let me go point by point
- Engine Response - for first 3000 kn (run-in) was sluggish, boring and a bit frustrating. But, after about 4000 km, it came to life with a diesel like pull staring from 2500 rpm -till 4000 rpm. A case in point - I was on the NH-8 one night, doing around 70, when I saw a fabia TDI and a Swift Vdi having it out, I was the third in the sequence. Till 90 km I was in fifth gear and then decided to take it on. So, there I was Lower in 4, revved it up till 5000 rpm, and was in the lead. I could believe the pull, the engine gave uptill around 4500 rpm and I was already touching 130+. I know ethically, it could be bad example and I would request the mod to spare me for this last one.

- Suspension and driving experience - I am addicted to driving, so took my fabia to Ajmer and Puskar. I must say this car has some road grip (thanks to apollo accelere 185/60/R14). The car easily manages small pot holes at decent speeds and had got a stiff suspension set-up, which can be felt at very slow speeds going over speed breakers and pot holes. On driving, the steering is live and has a decent feedback.

- Build quality and Interiors - My car has beige interiors and are prone to dust and stains. Plan to go for leather with some of my saving in next 6 months though. The build quality is top notch and has a premium feel to it. Solid Indeed. Would also advise other to have all black option for interiors, they are much better to maintain.

- Fuel Economy - I have got around 13l/km with normal petrol so far. I think it would slightly improve after first service which is at 15000 km.

- Expenses - Just got my engine oil and oil filter replaced. Engine oil 2.8L@ INR 907/ltr + Oil Filter (450/-) + labour (500). from giriraj motors, gurgaon

- Service Experience - well, We all know about this one right??. But, If you ask me I am not disappointed. A case in point - I think European automakers have a different prospective to A.S.S compared to Japanese ones. For eg. skoda service station and not huge because volumes are not huge for service, which is in turn because of the long service intervals. On the other hand, I think we Indian are use to Japanese servicing experience which is very systematic and robust because the volumes are very high and also its a major contributor to the bottom-lines of Japanese OEM's in India, again because of short service intervals, which we are used to. European OEM have a different prospective, they do not expect the customer to be 80% dependent on service experience rather are focused in build quality and product innovations. I am not backing Skoda on their service aspect though, as I feel its shoddy dealers who should be concerned about the service being a key contributor to their overall performance. Any thought??

- Now my buying experience - I sold my Accent CRDi done 1,20,000 km @3 lac in February and booking a Skoda fabia 1.2 elegance (dark blue) in Feb. But, to my surprise the blue color never arrived and I changed my decision to a Palio 1.6 sport (Red) as I had a 1.2 ELX 6 years back. By the time it was 15 April and still no news on delivery of my Palio. Again being frustrated for nearly 2 months, I cancelled this one too. I had two options at that time - A honda city vtec+ for 8 lac on road (2008 manufactured) or again a fabia 1.2 elegance as it was now 40,000 cheaper @ 6.4 lac on road. I alrady have a vtec+ and a i-Dsi with me, so it was kind of boring to have a third City, therefore went for it and bought a white one on 6 May. As things turned out, I learned that patience pays@ 40,000/- . So, finally surprise my family with the new car as they were unaware of my story from Palio onwards.

I would like to give a warm gesture to all you team bhp members to have such a platform for knowledge on automotive sector in India, being a auto analyst I am also one of those who would prefer cars over girls, but eventually you cannot do away without either of them .

Cheers!!!!
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Old 15th September 2009, 12:22   #2
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Not fair, Varun, where are the pictures

Your driving is nearly 3,000 kms a month! Why then did you not buy a diesel? On other points, I agree. The Fabia has superb build & ride quality. Importantly, its good to hear that you don't have any issues with the after-sales.

Congrats & drive safe.
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Old 15th September 2009, 12:31   #3
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Beige is quite hard to maintain and looks best when new. Many people learn it the hard way.

I always used to wonder why Skoda Service intervals are for every 10000kms. How much did it cost you for the service?

I love the stance this car has. I think its quite stylish.

Last edited by beejay : 15th September 2009 at 12:35.
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Old 15th September 2009, 12:33   #4
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Congrats varun,

Fabia is one of the rigid hatchback car in India.
I have TDed this car and looks plush in both Exteriors and Interiors.
Love to have one but wealth bothers
Enjoy and Drive Safe.
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Old 15th September 2009, 12:40   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by beejay View Post
Beige is quite hard to maintain and looks best when new. Many people learn it the hard way.
Nice and honest review.
On the quoted point however, IMHO beige is perhaps easier to maintain unlike black. Why: because dirt is seen on the beige (unlike on black) and thus can be cleaned before it becomes harder to remove. Trust me, if you like clean cars, beige is much easier and a clean beige looks terrific.
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Old 15th September 2009, 15:01   #6
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I am yet to go in for a first service which had now being updated to 15,000 km instead of 10,000. Just had an oil change, as recommended after the run-in period

@GTO - Yup, I drive around 3000 km, but I still feel diesel is not cheaper any ways. A small analysis: I drove my accent crdi 1,20,000 km and saved around 65,000/- for diesel. But what i payed was 1.5 lac more than the petrol variant + around 65,000/- on maintenance of the diesel (45,000/- for timing+tensner+Clutch+flywheel at 90,000km and 20,000 otherwise during the duration of ownership)

@GTO - Yup, I am not convinced after my experice with my Accent crdi @ 1,20,000 km, as I saved around 65,000/- on diesel, but invested 1.5L more than the petrol variant + lost the same 65,000 in maintenance

@Beejay - The service interval is now 15,000 from May 2009 onwards, I just had an oil change after the run-in period of 8500km as it uses synthetic oil

@Vasudeva - its actually the material of the seat covers, its actually cloth with a line texture which actually pics up dust and even water stains are retained, to my sorrow

Last edited by ajmat : 15th September 2009 at 18:09. Reason: please use the multiquote facility isteand of separate threads for each reply
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Old 15th September 2009, 16:36   #7
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I have a Fabia 1.2 HTP Ambiente, bought in August 2009. One point I am disappointed with is the engine noise. For a petrol, it is too noisy. Difficult to drive with the windows down. Once you close the windows it is very quite. What is your experience, noise levels improves with some usage? Mine has run around 1400KM till now.
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Old 15th September 2009, 17:11   #8
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yup benz_vasu, noise levels have improved after 5000 km and the engine is more responsive now. Whats the mileage you are getting and how has been your experience so far
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Old 15th September 2009, 17:51   #9
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I am getting around 12+ KMPL. Hope it improves because around 70 percentage of my usage was on roads without much traffic.
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Old 15th September 2009, 20:45   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by beejay View Post
Beige is quite hard to maintain and looks best when new.
Actually, if you take the necessary precautions and clean it ever so often, beige is not a problem at all. My Benz is nearing 60,000 kms & now in the 5th year of ownership. The beige looks 80% new, thanks to an immaculate detailing job performed every 6 months.

But yes, no one can deny that it will soil much more easily. Just gotta clean more often

Quote:
Originally Posted by 911varun View Post
Yup, I drive around 3000 km, but I still feel diesel is not cheaper any ways.
I disagree. Here is how:

Quote:
A small analysis: I drove my accent crdi 1,20,000 km and saved around 65,000/- for diesel.
Back of the envelope calculations, so please ignore the lack of absolute accuracy. Still within a 5% window.

The 3 cylinder Accent will easily give 14 kpl (conservative, many have reported higher) to a liter of diesel costing 35 bucks a liter. Cost per km = 2.8

The petrol will give 10 kpl (again, conservative) to a liter of petrol costing 48. Thus, 4.8 bucks a km.

Net saving over 1,20,000 kms = Rs. 2,40,000.

Now, add to that the fact that most diesels, especially the modern ones, command a better resale than their petrol cars. Further, in the case of ALL Europeans (including your Fabia), the diesels have far superior long-term reliability, durability & resale. It's the case with all Euro cars, search within the forum.

Quote:
45,000/- for timing+tensner+Clutch+flywheel at 90,000km and 20,000 otherwise during the duration of ownership
The petrol would also require its own share of maintenance including spark plugs, timing belt changes and clutch jobs. The main difference between the upkeep of a petrol & diesel is the more frequent oil change interval of the latter. But even that has been negated with the Europeans.
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Old 15th September 2009, 23:09   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GTO View Post
Actually, if you take the necessary precautions and clean it ever so often, beige is not a problem at all. My Benz is nearing 60,000 kms & now in the 5th year of ownership. The beige looks 80% new, thanks to an immaculate detailing job performed every 6 months
where in Mumbai do you get the detailing done? And do you get the exterior paint surface polished every 6 months?
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Old 15th September 2009, 23:38   #12
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What !!!1st service at 15K kms??
good to know that, but you had a oil change and filter change at 5000 kms after run-in. Oil and filter change for other car generally comes at the 2nd service or 10K kms. So that is almost the same for European/Japanese/American car.
Good to know that you are happy with the Fabia.Now for some pictures please.
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Old 16th September 2009, 01:26   #13
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Congrats Varun on a great choice. Fabia is a great build car for it's size. Having driven 40,000kms in a 14 months can vouch for the quality and the suspension, ride. Haven't faced any major issues accept for the blower noise which was replaced during the 2nd service. But apart from that nothing major. Just some niggles here and there. But after the 2nd service until now haven't faced any issue.


Quote:
Originally Posted by frankmehta View Post
where in Mumbai do you get the detailing done? And do you get the exterior paint surface polished every 6 months?
I know of some Mr.Barucha who does great Car detailing job from Interior to exterior and its underbody, to even the engine bay and it's parts. They use the polymer coating instead of teflon. But, job is worth every penny. Very unlike what you would get to see anywhere. PM me if need the No and want to have a word with them
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Old 16th September 2009, 10:14   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GTO View Post
Actually, if you take the necessary precautions and clean it ever so often, beige is not a problem at all. My Benz is nearing 60,000 kms & now in the 5th year of ownership. The beige looks 80% new, thanks to an immaculate detailing job performed every 6 months.

But yes, no one can deny that it will soil much more easily. Just gotta clean more often

YUP, will do the same, have schedule a interior cleaning this weekend, by the way what type of car detailing you have on your benz, is it leather beige or fabric beige? Will put in some pics of my fabia this weekend

I disagree. Here is how:

Back of the envelope calculations, so please ignore the lack of absolute accuracy. Still within a 5% window.

The 3 cylinder Accent will easily give 14 kpl (conservative, many have reported higher) to a liter of diesel costing 35 bucks a liter. Cost per km = 2.8

The petrol will give 10 kpl (again, conservative) to a liter of petrol costing 48. Thus, 4.8 bucks a km.

Net saving over 1,20,000 kms = Rs. 2,40,000.

Now, add to that the fact that most diesels, especially the modern ones, command a better resale than their petrol cars. Further, in the case of ALL Europeans (including your Fabia), the diesels have far superior long-term reliability, durability & resale. It's the case with all Euro cars, search within the forum.

The petrol would also require its own share of maintenance including spark plugs, timing belt changes and clutch jobs. The main difference between the upkeep of a petrol & diesel is the more frequent oil change interval of the latter. But even that has been negated with the Europeans.
I agree with your analysis, my points are as follows:
- for a fabia 1.4 TDI, I would have to fetch out 1.5L more and with my kind of driving style, its better I should have petrols, also I plan to hand over this one to my wife who currently drives the City i-dsi, a diesel would be a problem there also
- modern diesels are comparable to petrols maintenance, the problem is versatility. With my accent I use to have a lot of cold start runs, as in Gurgaon you need to have a car even to go to the nearby market and I use to feel bad for my diesel accent as it was so much prone to cold starts and very short runs
- diesels are good for long runs, my office is around 10km from my home one way, also I most scorch my car on weekend trips.
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Old 16th September 2009, 11:05   #15
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Varun,

Superb stuff. Firstly, love the fact that you bought a petrol over a diesel. I still pine for the i10 1.2 Good going man!

Secondly, why would you pay 500 bucks for changing the oil for god's sake? In such cars, its a 5-10 min job at best!!!!!

You know, if someone actually sat down and made a sensible excel sheet like Tech, the answer would be ... it doesnt matter!!!

Because frankly, 30-40k after five years or 1.2L km is not too much of a cost!
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