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Old 24th January 2010, 17:32   #1
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Cool My black little bull - My black Ritz ZXi

(DISCLAIMER: All the driving experience I have so far is with my Ritz, so these are still very early days for me, hence won't be able to give any comparison with other cars. I might have missed some points, please remind me and I'll get back.)

Background -

Driving has always been my passion since my childhood. I was dreaming about my first car since last 2 years. Finances and other family priorities kept me away from realizing my dream. Finally on 26th October 2009, me and wifey decided to buy our own first car. I log on to all car manufacturers' websites and register for test drives. Got instant reply from Maruti dealers so that they can get the car to my office or home. No response from any other manufacturer. Well, I don't want to repeat the decision making process here as it is posted in this thread already - http://www.team-bhp.com/forum/hatchb...-ritz-zxi.html (My very own first car - Ritz Zxi or i10 Asta? EDIT: Booked Ritz Zxi.)

I got the car delivered a week earlier than promised because of a misunderstanding between me, Maruti and dealer. The car was booked at Pratham Motors, Bangalore on 14th November and delivery was promised on 10th December. As I didn't get any info if the car was dispatched or not for 3 weeks after booking, I called Maruti Customer Care to find out if they can give me some info in this regard. This was simply an inquiry call, but they took it as a complain and escalated the matter with dealer. Because of this, dealer arranged a car for me within 4 days from Bimal. I did explained to dealer that I had not complained to Maruti, nevertheless they had already bought the car from Bimal.

I got the car delivered on 3rd December - a day after our first wedding anniversary, and a new chapter of our life begun.

My black little bull - My black Ritz ZXi-img_0255.jpg

Complete experience with dealer, I will post in Dealer Reviews section. So I'll directly jump to my impression about the car so far. It has completed 900 KMs in about 1.5 months and has gone through 1st free service.Wifey calls it "Golu", a word generally used for fat, chubby kids .

Exterior -

It does look different from other conventionally designed cars. I like it though. From front, it has a very imposing stance. It is very very tall (may be the tallest of all hatchbacks) and this adds to the bigger feeling you get when you stand by the car. Headlights are very big. The front grill and fog lamps compliment the big headlamps nicely. Coming to the controversial rear design, I find it unique. I love the boomerang shaped tail lamps. They are placed very high touching the roof-line of the car. Paint job is not as good as that of Hyundai or Fiat, but one has to compromise in one or the other aspect.

My black little bull - My black Ritz ZXi-img_02601_filtered.jpg

My black little bull - My black Ritz ZXi-img_0262_filtered.jpg

My black little bull - My black Ritz ZXi-img_0263_filtered1.jpg


Interior -

The moment you step inside the car, you get a BIG feeling. It is very very spacious from inside. All my friends appreciated huge front legroom. The dashboard is one of the longest of the competition and you get a feeling of big car because of it. Quality of plastics used is one of the best amongst all Maruti cars (still no match to Hyundai). Black ZXi comes with dual tone blue-gray interiors. The top of dashboard and door trims have blue shade and other parts are of gray color. This is a unique combination of colors and I must say it looks good. Boot is large enough to hold 2 large suitcases. There is no light provided in the boot.

A-pillar is very thick (standard in modern cars I guess?) and becomes obstructive when taking right turns. One has to be careful, when taking tight right turns. C-pillar is also very thick and rear glass area is very small. Due to this rear visibility is not the best, though I have got used to it. With the help of big sized ORVMs and IRVM, reversing is not a problem anymore that I don't feel the need for reverse parking sensors as of now. The IRVM is NOT anti-glare though mentioned as automatic day-light mirror in the brochure. There is no switch on the mirror to change as per day or night. I have asked the dealer to escalate this to Maruti, but no response have been received so far.

Controls -

All the controls (AC, Music System, Wiper and light stalks) are placed at conveniently reachable distance for the driver. Speed-o-meter is one big dial with lot of small warning signs around it. I didn't like it initially but have now settled with the looks. Once you get used to it, it is very easy to spot things. One thing I love is the position of RPM-meter. As everyone knows, it is placed on the dashboard, which is ideal if you change gears based on RPMs. You don't have to look all the way down through the steering, just a quick glance gives you current RPM. Dual horn is very good, it's loud and sharp. Much better than that of i10, which feels like a moped's horn.

Tilt steering and driver seat height adjustment has good amount of range to satisfy both tall and short drivers. The essential controls like steering, clutch, brake and accelerator are little harder (compared to i10 I test drove) but gives good response to be confident. Central locking has a very good feature that all the doors get locked once car crosses 20 KMPH speed. Doors do not get unlocked when engine is switched off on signals (my colleague's Elantra gets unlocked when engine is switched off). Hatch door is also unlocked when you unlock all the doors using central or remote locking. There is no lever provided to release the hatch door from inside, you have to unlock all the doors. Haven't used the fog lamps so far, so can't comment on their usefulness.

AC is very very effective but lack of automatic climate control is disappointing. It cools the cabin (including rear passengers) really fast. I always keep the blower to position 1 and temperature gauge at around 9 o'clock. Front and rear defoggers work like a charm and glass gets cleared within seconds. Front wipers are not of great quality, it leaves quite a lot marks and doesn't swipe completely. Rear wiper is a boon for me as I can't drive without rear vision. The motor for rear wiper is inside the door and is not insulated I guess because it makes noise when activated.

Music system -

ZXi model comes with factory fitted Nippon music system. Sound quality is adequate for me. Sound is pretty clear at lower volumes (enough to cut out all the outside noise) with enough bass. Quality of the FM output is more than I expected. Controls on the head unit are not very user friendly and one has to go through the user manual to understand all the different functionalities. Size of the head unit screen is very small with very little information displayed at any given point of time. Haven't tried the Aux-in functionality yet. Lack of USB is disappointment, one would expect to get USB when you spend 5.5+ lakhs on a car. Audio controls on the steering is again a boon as the driver doesn't have to reach out to head-unit. Head unit comes with a remote control also, which can be used by co-passengers to operate the music system. 4 speakers are placed inside 4 doors, which starts jarring at higher volumes.

My black little bull - My black Ritz ZXi-img_0207.jpg

My black little bull - My black Ritz ZXi-img_0208.jpg

Engine Performance -

In this department, I can only compare my car to the i10 I test drove. The engine is very much silent throughout all the gears except for lower RPMs in idle. When idle, RPM keeps hovering between 600 to 750, and when near 600 the engine does vibrate which you can feel through the steering. Lower gears have enough grunt for slow moving traffic. Engine comes to its life when it crosses 1600 RPM and you can suddenly feel a thrust when you rev the engine (not in the leagues of a turbo though). If you can keep the car at around 2000 RPM all the time, you won't feel lack of power ever. One good thing about the engine is, it feels very responsive even at higher speeds (85 KMPH is the maximum I have done so far because of running-in period), just with a small push on the accelerator, you can feel the car giving good feedback.

I haven't felt any difference in engine response when AC is switched ON. One strange thing I have noticed is, when clutch is pressed the RPM goes up (don't know if this is true with all the cars). As mentioned above, gear lever is positioned on the center console of the dashboard. Very convenient to hold. The lever is very short with accurate shifting. The throw is also very short and it slots perfectly except for reverse gear, which doesn't engage sometimes.

Drive -

ZXi comes factory fitted with 185/70 R14 JK Vectra tyres. They are fine as far as you are running on smooth roads, but start making lot of noise on not-so-smooth roads. I did want to upgrade to either Yokos or Michelins, but couldn't because of financials. Alloys that are used are really really good and gels well with my Black car. Never felt the need to buy better looking alloys. Spare tyre also comes with alloy wheel.

The ride is not as smooth as I expected. It was bit bumpy. When I checked the air pressure for the first time after about 10 days, I found that it was 41 PSI in all 4 tyres . I got it reduced to 30 (manual says 29 for all 4) and ride has improved after that. Cabin is insulated pretty well from outside noise. Front seat comfort is much better compared to rear. I haven't sat in the rear seat so far, but I think it is not as comfortable as front though none of the rear seat passengers have complained so far. Ground clearance is 170mm and coupled with shorter wheelbase in its class, the under-body of the car doesn't touch any of the devil speed-breakers on Bangalore roads (with car fully loaded).

FE -

I use only Shell normal petrol for my bike and car both. First full tank (measured over 428 KMs) gave me 14.46 KMPL in city with AC ON all the time. 40% of the time, car was driven in typical Bangalore bumper-to-bumper traffic and rest of the time, bit relaxed city traffic. 50% of the time car was fully loaded with 5 adult passengers.

Accessories fitted -

Door beading, bumper guards, luster seat covers, reverse horn, underbody + inside doors anti-rust treatment, sunfilm (3M RE-35).

My black little bull - My black Ritz ZXi-img_0209.jpg

My black little bull - My black Ritz ZXi-img_0210.jpg
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Old 24th January 2010, 17:48   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gandhi View Post
(DISCLAIMER: All the driving experience I have so far is with my Ritz, so these are still very early days for me, hence won't be able to give any comparison with other cars. I might have missed some points, please remind me and I'll get back.)
Hi Gandhi. Congrats on your Ritz. A fantastic review. Also I think one of the few Ritz in black that I have seen. Hope you have a wonderful experience
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Old 24th January 2010, 19:12   #3
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Congrats Gandhi! Those are pretty nice seat covers that match with the interior trim. Although it might be a pain to maintain being white.
Happy revving!
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Old 24th January 2010, 19:15   #4
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Thank god you decided to put down your experience in black n white at last!
Hope you are enjoying your black beauty.

As far as rpm engaging when clutch is engaged, its very normal.

When the clutch is disengaged, the crankshaft drives the layshaft and layshaft is driving the output shaft. When the clutch is engaged, the connection between the crankshaft and layshaft is disengaged, and the crankshaft rotates more freely, resulting in higher rpm.

Put in more experiences as you clock more miles - best of luck!
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Old 24th January 2010, 19:22   #5
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Great review. Awesome seat covers. As i tell everyone with a maruti.. Get some leather wraps on the steering (the one that is stitched to it).

F.E seems to be really good. Now i understand why all go for the Ritz Petrol instead of sticking to Diesel.
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Old 24th January 2010, 20:31   #6
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Hi Gandhi, congrats and nice review man. As Gemithomas suggested cover the steering wheel with MGA steering cover. It's really gives a much better feeling. I got this free with the my car.
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My black little bull - My black Ritz ZXi-cabin1.jpg  

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Old 24th January 2010, 21:25   #7
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Congrats and Nice review. Interiors look great. Seat covers look a bit loose to me.

The OE alloys look good and are durable compared to chinese brands. Retain them even if you change the tyres.
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Old 24th January 2010, 21:32   #8
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Congrats on the new car. The black colour looks really good. Wishing you many more miles with the car. Drive safe.
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Old 24th January 2010, 22:08   #9
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Nice review, congrats on your buy. I took test drive of RITZ Zxi today and was very much satisfied with the short span on Test Drive I am also considering for Ritz Zxi please keep updated about your valuable suggestions, pros and cons so that will help my cause as well.
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Old 24th January 2010, 22:56   #10
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ah, finally your ownership review has been penn down by you, i thought you might start your long term ownership report, anyways congratulations once again on your ritzy affair.Black looks good and so do her seat covers.Do fit steering cover as other members have suggested.Enjoy your ride and keep updating this thread.
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Old 24th January 2010, 23:22   #11
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This is the kind of steering cover that i was talking about.
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My black little bull - My black Ritz ZXi-image024.jpg  

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Old 25th January 2010, 10:07   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nurni76 View Post
Hi Gandhi. Congrats on your Ritz. A fantastic review. Also I think one of the few Ritz in black that I have seen. Hope you have a wonderful experience
Thanks. I have always loved Black cars. And the fact that not too many people were going for Black Ritz, I had to. Some exclusivity, you know.

Quote:
Originally Posted by theragingbull View Post
Congrats Gandhi! Those are pretty nice seat covers that match with the interior trim. Although it might be a pain to maintain being white.
Happy revving!
Not really. Right now, only me and wifey use the car so we are able to maintain them fine. Also, I give the car an inside cleaning treatment every week.

Quote:
Originally Posted by blackasta View Post
Thank god you decided to put down your experience in black n white at last!
Hope you are enjoying your black beauty.
Yes I am.

Quote:
Originally Posted by blackasta View Post
As far as rpm engaging when clutch is engaged, its very normal.

When the clutch is disengaged, the crankshaft drives the layshaft and layshaft is driving the output shaft. When the clutch is engaged, the connection between the crankshaft and layshaft is disengaged, and the crankshaft rotates more freely, resulting in higher rpm.

Put in more experiences as you clock more miles - best of luck!
Thanks for clarifying the RPM behavior. I'll surely keep updating the thread now onwards.

Quote:
Originally Posted by gemithomas View Post
Great review. Awesome seat covers. As i tell everyone with a maruti.. Get some leather wraps on the steering (the one that is stitched to it).

F.E seems to be really good. Now i understand why all go for the Ritz Petrol instead of sticking to Diesel.
Thanks Thomas for the suggestion. I do have the MGA steering cover (dealer gave it free in spite my reluctance to take it) but I don't like it. Planning to get leather steering cover, once wifey approves it.

Regarding FE, I was actually surprised to see 14.47 KMPL for the first full tank because -

1) I am still a newbie driver 2) This was the reading from first full tank

Quote:
Originally Posted by gaddiwale View Post
Hi Gandhi, congrats and nice review man. As Gemithomas suggested cover the steering wheel with MGA steering cover. It's really gives a much better feeling. I got this free with the my car.
Thanks for appreciation Gaddiwale.

Quote:
Originally Posted by para_7k View Post
Congrats and Nice review. Interiors look great. Seat covers look a bit loose to me.

The OE alloys look good and are durable compared to chinese brands. Retain them even if you change the tyres.
Thanks man. Yeah, the seat covers are not fitted perfectly, but then this is the best one can get in non-leather covers which are installed on top of factory fitted covers.

Quote:
Originally Posted by basilmabraham View Post
Congrats on the new car. The black colour looks really good. Wishing you many more miles with the car. Drive safe.
Thanks for the wishes.

Quote:
Originally Posted by driving_smartly View Post
Nice review, congrats on your buy. I took test drive of RITZ Zxi today and was very much satisfied with the short span on Test Drive I am also considering for Ritz Zxi please keep updated about your valuable suggestions, pros and cons so that will help my cause as well.
Sure. Do test drive all the cars in this segment and then decide. Everybody has his own set of expectations from a car.

Quote:
Originally Posted by vijaythacker View Post
ah, finally your ownership review has been penn down by you, i thought you might start your long term ownership report, anyways congratulations once again on your ritzy affair.Black looks good and so do her seat covers.Do fit steering cover as other members have suggested.Enjoy your ride and keep updating this thread.
He he. Thanks for the wishes Vijay. Long term review won't be up for long time come. But I promise, this review will be kept up-to-date.

Quote:
Originally Posted by gemithomas View Post
This is the kind of steering cover that i was talking about.
I get it. Thanks. I really liked the leather steering cover that comes in i10 Asta. That's the kind I am planning to get. Waiting for the approval from wifey .

Last edited by Gandhi : 25th January 2010 at 10:23.
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Old 25th January 2010, 10:35   #13
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@Gandhi - Great review and really good seat covers. Where and for how much did you get them from, if you don't mind. I have a Ritz Lxi and still looking for seat covers with a good price tag
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Old 25th January 2010, 12:20   #14
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@Gandhi - Great review and really good seat covers. Where and for how much did you get them from, if you don't mind. I have a Ritz Lxi and still looking for seat covers with a good price tag
Falcon, I had got the seat covers done from Dealer itself. Initially he was quoting 7500 + Tax for luster seat covers. After some negotiations, he came down to 6000/- Net.

If you remember, there was a 15000/- cash discount on Ritz Petrol in December 2009. My car was invoiced on 30th November but was delivered in December. Hence I insisted that I get the 15000/- cash discount offer on my car too. Finally I wasn't given the offer, but my accessories bill of 10600/- (for door beading, bumper guard, seat covers and underbody anti-rust coating) was waived off and MGA Car Cover and Steering Cover (worth some 1700/-) were given as freebies to compensate the offer. So at the end, I got the seat covers for free.
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Old 25th January 2010, 14:40   #15
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Hi Gandhi,

Congrats on your new Ritz.. Welcome to Ritz Club.

I also got my Ritz - VXI - Blue on Jan 7th. Have no complaints till now except for Reverse Gears slotting which you mentioned.

There is no lever provided to release the hatch door from inside, you have to unlock all the doors - You can find the lever below the driver's seat.
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