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Old 3rd December 2013, 23:15   #136
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Default Re: Maruti A-Star Automatic : Ownership Review

A question about FE (I suspect fuel may have been siphoned off):

I parked my car at Forum Mall (3rd Floor on MLP Parking). After a few kilometers driving after leaving the mall, I found that the fuel gauge had dropped by one bar (mine has 10 bars for the A-Star's 35 litres, hence one bar = 3.5 litres).

As per the trip meter, I had only covered 21 km when that one bar dropped (the car normally does at least 35km for one bar of fuel). That equates to a FE of 6 kmpl

Initially, I think fuel may have been siphoned. But, during that day, I got caught in HEAVY traffic from Forum to BTM - Bannerghatta Road, was carrying a full passenger load, and had to keep the A/C on throughout. Plus, for those 20 kms covered, the car was idling with A/C and music system on for around 30 - 40 mins. Could that have had an impact on FE, or was it possible that fuel was stolen at the mall (even though I parked in the middle, not in a corner)
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Old 20th January 2014, 11:18   #137
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Has anyone tried installing multiple 12 volt sockets in the car? Maruti has provided one 12 v cigarette lighter in the left round point near the parking lights.

Is it possible to install another 12 v sicket in the right side as well?
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Old 20th January 2014, 14:36   #138
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Posting an update of the fuel efficiency figures. My last fill (full tank, auto cut off method at shell bunk) gave me me 16.54 kms to a litre

Distance travelled = 417.9 km
Petrol consumed = 25.26 litres
Max speeds maintained = 60-65
AC - 10% of the distance.
Tyre pressure - 34 psi (hard, bone jarring ride at the cost of fuel efficiency)

Here is the route taken, should give you an idea of the frugality of this engine.
https://www.google.com/maps/preview#...m1!1e1&fid=0i1

Will be handing over the car for 2nd service next month. This vehicle has literally cut down my monthly fuel bills by around 35-40% when compared my former car Baleno.

Few issues to report to the service centre:
1.) Slight 'grr' sound from the engine at the idle
2.) Engine jerk at high speeds
3.) Wobbly front suspension, something seems to be loose. The vehicle moves like a horse on slight bumpy roads . I had them on the baleno, I am not sure if this has to do with the stiff suspension,
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Old 19th August 2014, 17:41   #139
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It's amazing how some fellow TBHPians are clocking 11-15 kmpl. I have been driving the A star AT since Jan 2012, and have never managed to clock above 12 kmpl (low AC, single passenger). Perhaps it is Mumbai roads and traffic, I am not sure why performance in terms of FE is this low.

Do you think I should get the car checked? I have done regular engine tune-up and servicing and use nitrogen 32psi for tyre pressure.
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Old 19th August 2014, 17:58   #140
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Originally Posted by abn6362 View Post
It's amazing how some fellow TBHPians are clocking 11-15 kmpl. I have been driving the A star AT since Jan 2012, and have never managed to clock above 12 kmpl (low AC, single passenger). Perhaps it is Mumbai roads and traffic, I am not sure why performance in terms of FE is this low.

Do you think I should get the car checked? I have done regular engine tune-up and servicing and use nitrogen 32psi for tyre pressure.
Count me in when you say this. I have an A-Star Automatic for the last 15 months and the best FE I have managed to extract from it is 10 kmpl. I primarily attribute it to the fact that it is being used to ferry the kids to and from school which is within a radius of 2km and to run some errands which may not go beyond 7-8 km one way. Have clocked 5400km as on date.
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Old 19th August 2014, 19:19   #141
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Default Re: Maruti A-Star Automatic : Ownership Review

Quote:
Originally Posted by abn6362 View Post
It's amazing how some fellow TBHPians are clocking 11-15 kmpl. I have been driving the A star AT since Jan 2012, and have never managed to clock above 12 kmpl (low AC, single passenger). Perhaps it is Mumbai roads and traffic, I am not sure why performance in terms of FE is this low.

Do you think I should get the car checked? I have done regular engine tune-up and servicing and use nitrogen 32psi for tyre pressure.
Slightly OT , I never managed over 11.5 to 12 kmpl in my alto lxi , so I'd guess 12 kmpl for your Astar is good . I too would drive in mumbai traffic with the Ac set to low .
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Old 13th October 2014, 14:41   #142
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Have any of you changed the ATF in your car? I know, the manual says 165000 KM, but that is just 100,000 miles converted to KMs. Given the nature of city driving in Bangalore/India, I was considering changing the ATF at 20,000 KMs. I did find a thread for the Santro A/T which was quite informative Link (Need Help for Santro Automatic)

The other reason I ask is: I am not too confident of ASS experience with regards to AT, I asked the spares section to give me the price of a liter of ATF and they handed me an ancient can (almost 5 yrs old) priced at 600/-. I have not been able to find Mobil ATF 3309 in my casual searches. The other thing I remember is that I had specifically asked them to change the engine oil at the first service and it was not done ("not required now, only 650 KMs")

I'd like my transmission to outlast the car (which is quite likely, given that they are using the same model on heavier cars with bigger engines) and want to take any measures I can to prevent a premature failure or malfunction.

A/Ts are notoriously expensive to repair/rebuild and most rebuilt ones don't function as well as the one that came with the car.

It will take a while for my Astar to reach the 20K KM mark (Its now at ~15K), but I'd like to do my research and be armed before I hit the ASS with 'Replace the ATF' command.
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Old 13th October 2014, 15:24   #143
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Not sure I understood the logic behind your choosing the 20K km mark to change ATF, when the manual says 165K kms ? Why 20K kms specifically ? And will you keep changing it every 20K kms going forward ?

If a manufacturer sets a specific interval for something (oil change or ATF), I believe the interval would be set at the lower limit (not higher) to avoid legal issues due to failure.
And this would be after extensive testing too. Eg. an oil-change interval of 10K kms means you can safely go till 10K kms or even a little more without damaging your engine.
So, if they say ATF can go till 165K kms, in reality I am sure it can go much more than that, but they would have kept it at that mileage after taking into consideration all kinds
of usage conditions. So having it changed at 20K seems like gross overkill to me.

Plus with this you are also trying to fix something that is not broken (yet). Given your own feeling of lack of confidence with the ASS for AT cars, not sure it is a good idea to have them do this.

EDIT : Our A-Star_AT is only at 19000kms now. No plans to change ATF anytime soon.

Last edited by supremeBaleno : 13th October 2014 at 15:52.
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Old 13th October 2014, 16:09   #144
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Quote:
Originally Posted by supremeBaleno View Post

Quote:
Not sure I understood the logic behind your choosing the 20K km mark to change ATF, when the manual says 165K kms ? Why 20K kms specifically ? And will you keep changing it every 20K kms going forward ?
Hmm... You have a point there supremeBaleno! Maybe 20K is too early, but 40K definitely!

Quote:
If a manufacturer sets a specific interval for something (oil change or ATF), I believe the interval would be set at the lower limit (not higher) to avoid legal issues due to failure.
The first time I saw it in the manual, I thought to myself 'Wow! fit and forget!' They've come a long way with ATs. But now, I'm not so sure, especially, given that bumper-to-bumper traffic is not the norm for which these ATs were designed. Perhaps someone could enlighten me on why 165K is fine for an ATF change under Indian conditions.

Quote:
And this would be after extensive testing too. Eg. an oil-change interval of 10K kms means you can safely go till 10K kms or even a little more without damaging your engine.
So, if they say ATF can go till 165K kms, in reality I am sure it can go much more than that, but they would have kept it at that mileage after taking into consideration all kinds
of usage conditions. So having it changed at 20K seems like gross overkill to me.
True. Agree with you. But I would like to do it at 40K, by then I would have come to some (hopefully) more knowledgeable opinion.
Quote:
Plus with this you are also trying to fix something that is not broken (yet). More so given your own feeling of lack of confidence with the ASS for AT cars.
True Again! You made me realize the folly of letting the ASS touching the AT. But this is exactly what I want to avoid in the long run - the ASS opening up the AT. Changing the oil, I hope will be a minor task.
Please chime in with your thoughts, this is exactly why I posted here. Gurus can set me on the right path, before I do something really foolish
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Old 15th October 2014, 10:37   #145
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Default Re: Maruti A-Star Automatic : Ownership Review

Google for "ATF change interval" and the search will throw up loads of links which will help you make a decision. Ofcourse as with any search, there is possibility of confusion too due to the diverse opinions on when one should change the fluid. Eg when the manufacturer suggested interval is 1-lakh miles, there are folks suggesting change at 30K or 60K or at half that point (50K). But most voices seem to indicate that the manufacturer knows best and to go along with what they have mentioned. I would go with that view - not just for ATF change, but oil-change & other scheduled maintenance. If they are capable enough of making a reliable car, am sure they can also identify the correct fluid change intervals.

Quote:
Originally Posted by mvadg
But now, I'm not so sure, especially, given that bumper-to-bumper traffic is not the norm for which these ATs were designed.
AT cars have been the norm in many countries for years now and they also operate in B2B traffic like ours or even worse. Eg it was a common sight every weekday morning during stays in the US to see hundreds of cars lined up one behind the other in each of the 6 lanes of I-85 towards downtown Atlanta. So while we are new to ATs, enough data is available from their usage in other markets for manufacturers to form a good idea of change intervals, failures etc. I don't think Chennai traffic has ever been that bad in comparison. Doubt B'lore is that bad either.

So I still think 40K interval is too premature, but it is your car and your choice. Do update us though on how it went and the improvements noted.
You could also contact MSIL directly and get their feedback on this.
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Old 15th October 2014, 11:24   #146
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I would like to change my ATF at around 50K, to be on the safe side. I have read in numerous forums that AT-Box failure can also be a result of poor quality of ATF (due to contamination by usage and due to aging). I have also read somewhere that the ATF serves as a cooling agent for the AT-Box. This (cooling) ability can also come down as the years go by.

OT: I faced lot of resistance from the MASS when I insisted on changing the gear oil, brake fluid and coolant for my (manual gear) Alto at 20K, even when it is mentioned in the user manual. Finally I had to buy the fluids from outside and get it changed in my presence. Same case when I tried to change the axle rubber boot which had a small crack. I feel (at least some) service centers deliberately skip small-revenue fixes in the hope of getting a major failure down the line.
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Old 15th October 2014, 14:31   #147
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Default Re: Maruti A-Star Automatic : Ownership Review

Thanks SupremeBaleno and jinojohnt for your comments.


Here is a relevant article Extending the life of your Transmission

Be sure to read the entire article, I found it very informative. Here is an extract:
Quote:
It doesn't take long for the automatic transmission fluid (ATF) to heat up once the vehicle is in motion. Normal driving will raise fluid temperatures to 175 degrees F., which is the usual temperature range at which most fluids are designed to operate. If fluid temperatures can be held to 175 degrees F., ATF will last almost indefinitely -- say up to 100,000 miles. But if the fluid temperature goes much higher, the life of the fluid begins to plummet. The problem is even normal driving can push fluid temperatures well beyond safe limits. And once that happens, the trouble begins.
Quote:
Originally Posted by jinojohnt View Post

Quote:
I would like to change my ATF at around 50K, to be on the safe side. I have read in numerous forums that AT-Box failure can also be a result of poor quality of ATF (due to contamination by usage and due to aging). I have also read somewhere that the ATF serves as a cooling agent for the AT-Box. This (cooling) ability can also come down as the years go by.
Exactly my thoughts.

Quote:
OT: I faced lot of resistance from the MASS when I insisted on changing the gear oil, brake fluid and coolant for my (manual gear) Alto at 20K, even when it is mentioned in the user manual. Finally I had to buy the fluids from outside and get it changed in my presence. Same case when I tried to change the axle rubber boot which had a small crack. I feel (at least some) service centers deliberately skip small-revenue fixes in the hope of getting a major failure down the line.
I can relate to that! I have not been able to convince them to change all the rubber parts and fluids on my M800; they did it piecemeal, very reluctantly, every time I took the car to them at my insistence
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Old 31st March 2015, 16:26   #148
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Originally Posted by mvadg View Post
It doesn't take long for the automatic transmission fluid (ATF) to heat up once the vehicle is in motion. Normal driving will raise fluid temperatures to 175 degrees F., which is the usual temperature range at which most fluids are designed to operate. If fluid temperatures can be held to 175 degrees F., ATF will last almost indefinitely -- say up to 100,000 miles. But if the fluid temperature goes much higher, the life of the fluid begins to plummet. The problem is even normal driving can push fluid temperatures well beyond safe limits. And once that happens, the trouble begins.
Trying a different tactic - making sure that the ATF temperature does not exceed the recommended maximum. I got myself an OBDII device to read various parameters through an app on my phone. Yet to see the ATF temperature on any app - seems this parameter is read by some proprietary means i.e. need to tweak the app to read the temperature - wish me luck!
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Old 26th May 2015, 08:22   #149
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Default Re: Maruti A-Star Automatic : Ownership Review

How many of you still have the A-Star AT ?
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Old 26th May 2015, 10:16   #150
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How many of you still have the A-Star AT ?
I have an A Star AT bought in October 2010 done 16k kms till date. The car is doing fine and the running has increased to 30kms a day.
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