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Old 21st November 2009, 13:36   #1
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Default Ownership thread for second hand OHC 1.5AT

Hello All,

Finally my membership request got approved, so time for my first post and I am happy to have my first post under ownership thread ! I am a Chennaite, but I have spent sometime in Bangalore and San Jose. I love automobiles, anything that has a engine - be it diesel, petrol or electric :-). Till sometime back never got a opportunity to own a car, but that has changed recently.

After moving to Chennai sometime back, I started the car hunt - but couldn't find a good Driver's car within my budget, so the hunt kept dragging on. After a lot of thought I decided to take the risk and started looking at second hand cars for a OHC.

1) Financially this option would give me a car that I would love to drive and will be much cheaper than the Punto/Swift option.

2) It will also mean that I don't have to worry about parking places as in I can park it in a open/public place. People who live in Chennai (esp Triplicane) will appreciate the risk of parking in open roads.

3) It will let me "learn" driving again, till now I have driven only in US - so was wary of getting a new car and getting it scratched/dinged.

I Finally found a 2001/2002 OHC 1.5 AT type 2, but had to make a few compromises

1) Price was a bit higher than what I was ready to pay, also some mechanical parts have to be changed, they were in a bad condition when I bought. I was apprehensive of the added bill, but OHC had a special place in my heart - so decided to pay the price, this was heart-over-mind decision.

2) It was a AT, but I am happy with this compromise - AT is ideal for city drives. The OHC is good to drive even with a AT :-).

Pros
-------
1) Although this is a 7yr old car with 73k on the odo, the car doesn't feel that way when driven - it sticks to the road and gives a nice feel. I would say it feels more like a 3-4 yr old car. The engine/transmission/suspension still feels good. The only signs of aging can be seen in the "fittings/accessories".

2) The steering feel/response is a pleasure, it didn't give the dead feel of some of the other cars available in that budget range.

3) Since it is a old car, you don't get tensed when someone drives close to you :-). I am also able to drive without being too concerned about how close I am getting to barriers or other vehicles ( I mean within limits).

4) Most importantly I am learning about cars in the best possible way, there is nothing like "learning by doing/struggling" - sure it is a costly way to learn about cars, but I feel it is worth it. But to be on the safe side I have enrolled in myTVS emergency service, I don't want to get stranded in the road for sure.

Cons
-------
1) Low seating, this is needed in a Driver's car like OHC - but it is a put off if you are looking for a comfortable commute car, old people will struggle with ingress/egress.

2) The typical issues that one faces with a old car - Exhaust is rusted, power steering rack is gone (replaced with non genuine honda part), engine is slightly noisy ( I feel the mounting has to be changed).

3) You always have a nagging feeling about whether things are really working fine :-).Since I am first time car buyer, this feeling is amplified - you tend to have a panic whenever you hear an abnormal sound !!

Things to do
------------------
1) Get the mechanical issues sorted out as fast as possible, replace the exhaust and engine mounts, change the headlight assembly. I wish I had someone like Shanbag in Chennai, if anyone knows a good OHC mechanic/workshop in Chennai let me know.

2) Upgrade the interiors, thinking of doing something from Karlson or in the worst case, touch leather from Stanley.

3) Upload better pics, get in touch with fellow OHC owners, GTO/Dippy to learn more about the maintenance of the car.

I am banking on Team BHP to help me maintain this car - I am hoping to keep it in good shape till 100k atleast. I have seen Hondas run for 150k miles in US easily, though I would accept US is a more friendly environment for the car, better roads/fuel.

P.S: Note that the car has been repainted, I did take it to the Honda dealer for inspection - he confirmed that there is no accident damage.
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Old 21st November 2009, 14:21   #2
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Short and nice write up.
The repainting looks very nice/professional and the car looks shiny/attractive.
Cheers !
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Old 21st November 2009, 14:36   #3
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Congratulations Partha and welcome to the OHC Club. The OHC still holds its own among newer cars in the C segment. The car is extremely reliable and all its needs is its scheduled service from time to time. The points you mentioned are common to all OHCs. 73k kms is nothing for an OHC. These cars go on forever. You will have to do a major service at 80k kms as recommended by Honda. The AT box is a boon in traffic.

Has the suspension been overhauled? If not, now would be a good time to do so.

Have fun and drive safe.
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Old 21st November 2009, 19:25   #4
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Congrats.

Please do share medium term review.

"...power steering rack is gone (replaced with non genuine honda part), engine is slightly noisy ( I feel the mounting has to be changed)."

I donno at what price did you buy the car, but I guess that the buyer needs to control the emotions n take a rational decision.

I dilly dallied my OHC AT car buying till the seller offered to change the suspensions without any increase in price.
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Old 21st November 2009, 21:47   #5
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OHC AT was one of the first few good automatics to be sold in India, its got gem of an engine, its wide powerband even takes care of most of the automatic box's shortcomings.

But owning a car this old does may not actually turn out to be very cheap. I am not sure if most Honda service centers have adequate spares to support an OHC AT.

Last edited by .anshuman : 21st November 2009 at 21:48.
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Old 22nd November 2009, 10:50   #6
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Thanks for the wishes guys.

Regarding the financial aspect, I am not even going to try and defend it. I keep telling myself that "I spend on the car, I don't invest in it" - as long as the amount spent is within limits I am fine with it. As long as I feel happy when I drive the car, I am satisfied and OHC does this. I did try i10 Auto, it is a very good car - but it just doesn't appeal to me at this moment and other than i10 there is really no other Auto option in this budget. But to be very honest, people did advice about the problems that I will face after few years and I believe it is a valid concern. I am assuming Honda will support a product for atleast 10yrs, so I am not going to worry till 2011-12. I spoke to the service guys, they don't stock OHC spares - but they do get it If I tell them in advance.

Dippy,
Do you have or know anyone who has a scanned copy of OHC owners manual, I would like to get a copy of it.
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Old 24th November 2009, 14:36   #7
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@Partha. Nice car. 73K kms is nothing for a well maintained OHC.

@dippy,
80K is a major service. What all are list of items that have to be done in 80K service.
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Old 24th November 2009, 14:59   #8
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@partha,Congrats on the OHC, I myself own an OHC 2001 1.5 Manual and has been great till now. What was the price you paid for the car? If you do not want to disclose in the thread, please PM me.
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Old 28th November 2009, 20:41   #9
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Cruiser,

I will send a PM about the price, I did pay more than the "market rate" as told by carwale - but I wanted a AT car, it is pretty rare to find one.

Btw I see that you are in chennai, where do you give your car for service?
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Old 29th November 2009, 06:08   #10
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Good buy, I had shortlisted one OHC AT with 80k on the odo, however couldn't convince myself for low seating. Needed a car like Santro height seats.

Wonderful car. Do keep us posted on the updates.
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Old 29th November 2009, 07:14   #11
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Welcome to the club Partha. When did u found Team-BHP? before or after purchase... nothing to scare you , my friend too owns a second hand OHC A & happy on its both reliability and maintenance costs (outside garage). OHC is one of my favorite car, purely for its killer looks & have heard tons of stories here on the driving pleasure it offers. Enjoy it.

Only worrying part is paying a premium price with all these niggling issues, which you got it fixed on your own. Baleno is also a wonderful buy with worst resale value, but getting rid of the car is also equally pain (in terms of finding a buyer at reasonable rates)
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Old 29th November 2009, 14:15   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by partha379 View Post
Cruiser,

I will send a PM about the price, I did pay more than the "market rate" as told by carwale - but I wanted a AT car, it is pretty rare to find one.

Btw I see that you are in chennai, where do you give your car for service?

All my services have been done at the ignite garage, owned by a fellow team-bhpian Raghav. I will recommend this garage for your car too. I paid the same amount as you for a 2001 OHC 1.5 exi MT with 85K on the odo.
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Old 1st December 2009, 08:54   #13
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Tanwaramit,
Low seating was a issue, but I find that after I get in and settle in the car it is not such a big problem - but ingress is definitely a issue. One thing that worked in my favor is that I got used to driving cars in US, most of the cars there have low seating (I am not talking about SUVs)

Surprise,
I suppose niggles are expected in a 2nd hand car, I am ok with it as long as I know the reason and the fix for the issue. It is very difficult to find a niggle free 2nd hand car, you just hope that you get a car that can be fixed with some work on your part - I keep telling myself that this is the cost you pay for the money saved.

Cruiser,
Can you PM me Raghav's contact details, I would like to talk to him and get to know his place. Right now the car is fine, but I believe that It is better to find a good Dr before you fall sick, when you are sick you can't afford the luxury of searching for a good Dr :-).

I went to Haute car zone in OMR to get some car care products - got formula 1 car wash and Eagle spray wax. I do prefer the wax bar, but I don't want to straightaway take up 4 hr cleaning assignments :-).
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Old 1st December 2009, 14:38   #14
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Congrats on the buy. Honda will never let you down in any aspect.
Have you got any reason why owner need to repaint the car. Was it the same color or different?
Watch out for the suspension wear, changing tires, check the break pad & disc as well. which need to be replaced. Remove the after market PW steering rack.
Get the Injectors, throttle body cleaning done. Not to forget to replace the silencer.

Need more pics buddy.
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Old 1st December 2009, 16:55   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by partha379 View Post
Low seating was a issue, but I find that after I get in and settle in the car it is not such a big problem - but ingress is definitely a issue.

Can you PM me Raghav's contact details, I would like to talk to him and get to know his place.

I went to Haute car zone in OMR to get some car care products
I have sent you the details, please check your PMs. I am 6 foot 3 inches and found the ingress and exit a problem initially, but after prolonged use, I am pretty comfortable with the ingress, but exit is still a problem for me.

Where exactly is this Haute car zone located in OMR? I travel on OMR daily.
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