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Old 6th August 2010, 21:13   #1
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Default like.no.other - My tafeta white Honda Jazz

Today as I am about to take the delivery of my car, I could not help but recollect the experiences of the last 2 months
in my search of a new car. It has been truly enthralling, exciting, frustrating and enlightening at the same time.

Why a new car?

We already have a Santro for the last 4 years and have been happy with the car to say the least.
My wife has joined a new office and our office timings do not match. Also, there were issues about dropping and picking up
my kid from the playschool. There were 2 options - either get a driver or get a new car. Then I decided I would
rather pay an EMI for a new car rather than the driver's salary! And that was it - the car search started.

What is the Budget?

This is the first thing one should decide. Now we obviously wanted something much better,bigger and powerful than the Santro.
Though we could have afforded 8-9 lakhs, I thought we can get a good quality premium hatchback matching our requirements and
with lots of features around 6-7 lakhs. So, that the number we had in mind.

Requirements?

My wife and I sat down and thought about the requirements. My wife does not understand the technicalities but she had her opinion
on the design, aesthetics etc. Also, we only considered cars with ABS and Airbags as we don't want to compromise on safety.
And since my usage is very low, it is going to be a petrol car.
In order of priority, here are the requirements -

1> Premium feel/interior and build quality - The car should look and feel premium mainly from the inside. Should give us a feeling that we are in a much better car than the Santro. So the quality of the interior and the fit/finish has to be top-notch. Also, the build quality should be very good - no rattling etc.

2> Reliability - Should be super-reliable as I hate to go the service station. So, Japanese cars preferred.

2> Space - We both are fond of airy and spacious interiors, makes us feel good inside the car. Rear seat space is very important.

3> Visibility - Not only for the driver but for the rear passengers well. Again, this has got to do with the feel-good factor and comfort inside the car.

4> Power - The Santro is very zippy in city traffic but it struggles on highways in 3-digit speeds with 4 people on board. Wanted something with a much better topend performance and at least similar performance to the Santro in the city.

3> Ease of use - Should be easily driveable in the city where I will be spending 90% of my time, good turning radius, gearshift quality etc

5> Handling - I like to drive and I drive faster than the average Joe on the road.So, handling is important though I really
do not need track-like handling.

6> Boot space - Though my driving is mainly in the city, the car needs to have enough boot space for weekend trips and save me
embarrassment while picking up or dropping people to the airport.

6> Ride - I was sure anything in this segment will have better ride quality than my Santro. Didn't give much importance to this but should be acceptable.

8> Looks - Not very particular on looks as long as it looked pleasant to our eyes.

9> Features - Not very particular about features but more I get for the money, the better. Some things I would like to have are - electric mirror adjustments, steering audio controls etc. This can be a tie-breaker if I ended up with more than one car in the final shortlist.

(to be contd...)

Last edited by adimicra : 6th August 2010 at 21:14.
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Old 6th August 2010, 21:19   #2
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congrats man, finally after all the time adimicra become adijazz. price notwithstanding it is the best hatchback in the country.
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Old 6th August 2010, 22:05   #3
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Congrats on your Jazzy acquisition!
Do post pics.
BTW - who's gonna use the Santro now? You or your better half (somehow I sense that I know the answer... )
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Old 6th August 2010, 22:07   #4
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Default let the search begin

The method was simple - first follow a process of elimination based on the requirements and then come up with a shorlitst to decide on the final choice.
I decided to consider almost call cars in the 4-7 lakh range - Figo/Swift/Ritz/Micra/Polo/Punto 1.4/I20/Jazz/Manza/Linea/Fiesta - totaly 11 cars.
I decided to test drive of all these cars and see it myself before deciding.

1st elimination - Ritz - this was the only car eliminated on the basis of looks.

2nd elimination - Swift - Build quality is not good and the space in the rear is pretty bad.

3rd elimination - Figo
- The moment I sat in the car it felt build to cost and the interior screamed cheap to me. The test drive was just a formality - the shortest test drive I have ever taken.

4th elimination - Punto 1.4 - Before the TD, I was thinking that this is the car for me. 90 hp on tap coupled with the gorgeous looks.
But the TD was a disappointment. The interior plastics and fit/finish was pathetic - the TD car had a broken glove box.
The pickup in the initial gears was bad as well, the gearshift was rubbery and the turning radius was huge. Also, space in the rear is nothing great.
I must admit that the ride quality, handling and steering was simply superb though.

5th elimination - I20 - Before I started the TDs, the I20 and the Punto 1.4 were the 2 cars I had my eyes set on because these 2 seem to provide excellent features at a reasonable cost. As Punto got eliminated, I had really my eyes set on the I20! On to the TD - the interiors felt nice and spacious with good levels of equipment. So far so good.
Started and the car and slammed the accelerator pedal. Initial response in good but the car felt little sluggish at higher speeds, slightly disappointed but still okay. Next went to a slightly curvy road and got shocked with the steering - superlight and feels like playstation, does not inspire any confidence while taking corners. Was still thinking what to do. Then I remembered the various problems reported in the forum with the I20 AC - asked my friend who was sitting behind about the AC performance. He said 'its ok' and mind you this was not a particularly hot day by Hyderabad standards. Then I myself sat in the back seat while my friend drove the car. The AC was not powerful to say the least and the ride was too soft. Too many compromises to make if I go for the I20 - I thought for a while and decided against it.


Now I knew the Jazz was very expensive by hatchback standards. There were some discounts going on. So, decided to give it a shot and called for a TD. The TD experience just blew me away. Right from the moment I sat in the car, it felt premium to the core - the steering, the instrument console, the switchgear and the overall fit/finish was awesome. Another think that struck me immediately is the all round visibility and loads of space everywhere.The driving experience was excellent as well - the car felt peppy if you rev it and the engine was eager to be revved - suits by driving style to the T. The gearshift quality was excellent and add to that all the tricks with the magic seats,10 cup holders and huge boot - my heart was sold on to the Jazz.But, and this is a big but - what about the price? Even after discounts, it was costing more than 8.2L OTR almost same as most C-segment sedans. Another thought I had is - everyone around me will think me to be the biggest fool in the world having purchased a hatchback at this price!
With a heavy heart, almost decided to drop the Jazz from my list.

Now, since I have already tried the Jazz, I thought its only prudent to try out some of the C-segment sedans in the similar price range
and see if those have something extra to offer. (I can't digest the looks of the Dezire, so that was not even considered ).
6th elimination - Manza - I am not a fan of Tata cars to be honest as I do not have any confidence about their reliability. Also their fit/finish and plastic quality is not to my liking. Had a TD of the Manza, the car felt ok - not too sluggish. It has huge space - much more than anything I ever wanted and great VFM pricing. It is like the Figo among hatchbacks in terms of VFM. But the sub-par quality and lack of confidence on reilaibility of Tata cars eliminated the Manza from the list.

7th elimination - Linea - reasons similar to the Punto 1.4 though it has more space. But the other issues remain. Apart from the quality issues, I found the pickup to be nothing great. One thing I must admit - If I have to buy any car from the Fiat/Tata stable, I will go for the Manza - excellent VFM.

8th elimination - Fiesta- This is without doubt the best driver's car south of 10 lakhs..nothing even comes close! But the space is pretty less inside and the interior looked dated and felt like it belong to one generation back. Also not very sure of Ford's reliability ..so decided against it though the acceleration of this beast during the TD is something which I still remember.

Meanwhile, the Micra was pre-launched. I checked out the car with my family and we were impressed with the interior space and build quality. The steering looked damn cheap though without the metallic logo but the dealer assured me that it will be there in the production car. Also, given its light weight, I expected it o be fast and fun-to-drive. So, took a chance and paid the booking amount.

But the decision was not yet done. I needed to have a backup plan in case the Micra disappointed in the TD and I was running out of options.

What next?

(..to be contd)

Last edited by adimicra : 6th August 2010 at 22:19.
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Old 6th August 2010, 22:08   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by blackasta View Post
Congrats on your Jazzy acquisition!
Do post pics.
BTW - who's gonna use the Santro now? You or your better half (somehow I sense that I know the answer... )
My wife has just learned to drive. I guess that's enough information for you to find out the answer
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Old 6th August 2010, 22:17   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by adimicra View Post
My wife has just learned to drive. I guess that's enough information for you to find out the answer
Come on adimicra - the new driver deserves a new car
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Old 6th August 2010, 22:32   #7
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Hai Adi,

Congrats on your new car . Do post some pictures of the beauty.

Yes the price is been the deciding factor for many for not choosing Jazz.
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Old 6th August 2010, 23:14   #8
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9th elimination - The Polo and it was not an easy one. Now comes the Polo.. this is a car I haven't TD'ed yet simply because the VW dealers here in Hyderabad refused to send the car for TD to my office or residence. Since I was running out of options, decided to give it a try. My wife and I had a look at the car and found the car to be well-built and the quality on the exterior as well as the interior was excellent. Only grouse was the lack of space in the rear! We wanted a TD and the dealer refused due to some odd reason which I don't remember! Came back home and discussed about the Polo - my wife was not keen on it as it is not spacious enough. I tried to convince my wife saying that 'We need to compromise somewhere and since we are very particular on quality which the Polo offers no doubt, let's give it a shot!' Wifey kind of agreed though not totally convinced.
Then one day, my friend and me called the VW dealer, confirmed that the car is available for a TD and went to the showroom. To our surprise, we were told the car is not available for TD because the display car has been sold and the TD car has been put on display! I was totally pissed off and left from there with the assurance that the SA will give me a call once the TD car is available.
Polo was seeming less and less convincing to me given the dealership experience here. Also, it has some good features missing and I didn't want to spend 7+ lakhs of on the 3-pot 74hp motor! Meanwhile, the Polo 1.6 was launched and I got a new lease of life. Called the dealer and verified that the price difference is just 40K. I was excited and wanted to have a TD of the 1.2 petrol to get a feel of the car, but again no car available for TD and the dealership never bothered to call me again. That was the end of Polo for me given the dealership experience and my wife not being happy about the rear space and how can I forget the 4-month waiting period

10th elimination - The Micra
Meanwhile the Micra was officially launched and I went for the TD on the 1st day itself and I can admit now, I was disappointed.
  • Steering looked damn cheap with no chrome logo as promised.
  • The refinement was not anywhere close to the 4-cylinders particularly at high rpms and the pickup was not great either - performance was just adequate and not exciting! I wonder why the super-light weight of the Micra does not help in performance! The gearbox was not as bad as the Punto but the throws were long and lacked the slickness of Swft/Jazz/Polo. Everything about the drive was very average!
  • Next came the issues related to the rear-seat under-thigh support which is indeed bad. This, coupled with lack of adjustable headrests in the rear does not make the rear seat of the Micra a good place to be, though there is ample amount of space!
  • Last but not the least - the large and uneven panel gaps particularly on the bonnet and near the tail lights was an eyesore and does not speak volumes of Nissan's Quality Control.
I took a deep breadth and thought for a day about the Micra. I realized I will be making too much of a sacrifice if I go ahead with the Micra! If I have to make a sacrifice, then why not some trusted brand? What's the point of making a compromise with a car from Nissan, who does not have any presence in India?
The Micra was slowly becoming more and more unlikely! But what's the alternative?

(... to be contd)
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Old 6th August 2010, 23:27   #9
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Wow Adimicra, congrats on buying the Jazz! That's a long journey from Ritz to Jazz. Has the car arrived at your home yet or is it still at the dealer? Pictures required asap and do post more details about your experience soon
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Old 6th August 2010, 23:43   #10
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Default Finally it's the Jazz

The Jazz is the only car which met all our criteria but I had almost rejected it for the high price. After the Micra TD, I was almost back to square one and was thinking what to do. The next day - I got a call from the Honda dealer here and asked me whether I am still interested in the car. I said yes provided they give me a good deal.
The next day, the deal was offered -
  • Cash discount of 73K on the Jazz Select model (which comes with alloys and rear parcel tray)
  • Mode kit free ( includes illuminated scuff plates, silver finish on interior panels, door and bumper protectors) worth some 25K
  • Mudflaps,Carpet mats and Teflon coating free
  • Good interest rate on the loan.
Looked like a good deal and I asked them for one day's time. That night, I hardly slept and all the thought was about convincing my head that spending 8L on a small car is worth it.
My heart was already sold on the Jazz but the job of convincing my head was not an easy one, particularly since I was considering buying the most 'ridiculously' priced car in the country and everyone will comment - 'Why did you buy a small car when you can afford a sedan?'
So, here are the justifications my heart gave to my head to convince it for the Jazz -
OE Music system - The OE music system in the Jazz is just awesome and sounds better than the one I have in my Santro ( amplifier with JBL speakers). I had budgeted around 10-12K for upgrading the OE music system for my new car. In case of Jazz, not required at all!
4 year extended warranty and 4 year roadside assistance free -
This definitely saves me quite a bit of money and gives me peace of mind. Kudos to Honda for keeping this as standard.
Tyre upgrade not required - I insisted on Michelin tyres and was promised the same by the dealership provided they have it in stock or receive it in the next lot. I found a lot of difference in the ride quality, handling and noise after upgrading my Santro tyres from Goodyear to Michelin. Had planned the same for my new car, so had a budget of 10K for tyre upgrade which can be saved.
Good interest rate on loan - I was offered an attractive rate of interest on my car loan, as compared to the market rates. As per my calculation, this will save my another 10K as compared to say what was offered in the Micra.
Honda reliability - Since I am planning to keep this car for the next 5-7 years, I hope to sve some money and pain due to the legendary Honda reliability.
Boot space and interior space - This was the main clincher for me. The Jazz has a huge boot of 384 litres which is similar to some C-segment sedans. Add to this all the tricks and flexibility offered by the magic seats, the luggage carrying capacity of the Jazz will put most sedans to shame! And coupled with the spacious interiors, the Jazz totally eliminates the need for me to buy a C-segment sedan ever ( most of those are hatch with a boot anyway). My next car ( if and when I have enough money) will be a proper sedan like the Civic or the Laura!

That was it - The next day, I cancelled the booking of Micra and booked the Jazz. I chose the tafeta white color which looks majestic on the Jazz but since there were none in stock with Michelin tyres, we decided to wait for the next lot. Thankfully, the next lot had a white Jazz with Michelin tyres!
Did the PDI - had 21Km on the odo and everything was fine. Got the car home today evening! What a journey ! Thanks to T-Bhp and all its members for their inputs/opinions/brickbats and everything..T-Bhp truly rocks!

Initial thoughts on the Jazz- The jazz is more of a min MPV than a traditional hatchback that has excellent quality, practicality,space,reliability,comfort and also good on power, features. If you think of it is a typical hatchback, it looks overpriced definitely. But if anyone can do away with the desi pride associated with a sedan, this car will give most of the C-segment cars a run for its money with its versatility,practicality and quality, particularly if the usage is primarily going to be in the city! That's why it is truly like.no.other!
One word about the dealer Pride Honda
- very nice and helpful people. Would definitely recommend them to anyone in Hyderabad looking to buy a Honda car!

Pics and more comments to follow in the weekend... I am exhausted now after writing this looong post! Need a break for sure.

Last edited by adimicra : 7th August 2010 at 00:01.
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Old 6th August 2010, 23:51   #11
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Congrats Adi!!! Jazz is a brilliant car. Could you share the OTR after discounts? Pics Please!!
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Old 6th August 2010, 23:53   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by adimicra View Post

Pics and more comments to follow in the weekend... I am exhausted now after writing this looong post! Need a break
and a well deserved break it is.
Excellent thread. Just needs a couple of pics to liven it up.

I sat in the Jazz during the auto expo. and completely agree with you on the feel. Its way superior to anything else.
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Old 7th August 2010, 00:16   #13
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Dear Adimicra,
Congrats on the new car.Excellent write up.I felt the same when I went for car shopping 1 year back.Jazz is a great car to buy.It is an excellent product.I was really impressed by the quality of the interiors.I felt it was better than ANHC.

Since Jazz was meant to be a second car to the premium category eg:Civic/Accord/CRV owners,Honda has made sure that the car is of good quality.But the price was too steep to attract buyers.I still think JAZZ is the hatch to buy if you have the money and it fulfils ones requirements.Enjoy the beauty.Please post the pictures.Keep updating.
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Old 7th August 2010, 00:23   #14
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Congrats adimicra for the Jazz. Your username still alludes about the Micra. Nicely penned down experience. The hatchback king is now in your garage. Waiting eagerly for those snaps and driving experience.
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Old 7th August 2010, 00:41   #15
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Congrats on the new purchase mate. Now waiting for the weekend pictures to come up.
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