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Old 25th March 2011, 10:35   #1
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Post Tata Aria Pride 4x4 : White Exterior with Black Interiors

This is my first thread on Team-BHP, I have been an avid follower of this forum since a while, and needless to say I learnt a lot here. That said, this is my first contribution towards the community; I have penned down my initial ownership experience in the form of a story which I found as the simplest way possible. Most of the views expressed here are based on my personal opinion and in NO way do I wish to offend anyone; please bear with me on that front.

I found a fellow member ACM’s style of penning down an ownership thread very comprehensive, but let me remind you’ll that I am no ACM. Still, I decided to do a mini version of what he did in my own way; I hope that you’ll enjoy the read. I thank you’ll for accepting me as a part of this community and showing interest in my thread, enough said, read on;

The Story behind; how we got our “Pride”!


[i] Why a new vehicle? – Previous State:
[II] Fuel type and Contenders:
[III] Selection Process; Final Decision:

[IV] The Twist!
[V] Which Variant & Color:
[VI] Which Dealer:
[VII] Negotiations, Booking Details and Delivery date:
[VIII] Our Savior:
[IX] Dealership Experience:
[X] Initial Ownership:

[i] Why a new vehicle? – Previous State:

June 2010:

In the month of June, I applied for my license, got my learners and finally got my hands on the Scorpio Vlx we had purchased in 2008, needless to say; it was a blast to drive! And more importantly it was one of the most expensive vehicles we had ever purchased.

What a moment it was, two years after our purchase I got to drive the car that I had been dreaming about! I took out the car for long drives and dragged my family along with me; To sum up my enthusiasm I can tell you’ll that I drove around 900kms in a week’s time!

My last trip was to a beach near Mumbai. I thoroughly enjoyed the drive, and on my way back, I noticed the presence the car had, the pull from the hawk was addictive! After my visit to the beach I went to a friend’s place to prepare for an exam scheduled the next day. I returned late at night, it was about 12 on the clock,

Soon, I found out that our parking was occupied by our other cars, so I called up Dad and he asked me to park the car just outside the security cabin of our Building, I did just that. I locked the car properly, put my stuff on the dashboard and went home. I can’t exactly describe the feeling but I felt eerie as I walked pass the car. As if someone was following me;

I checked my pockets and realized that I forgot my phone and wallet in the car. I decided to go and get it as I would need it in the morning to make some calls. I walked towards the Scorpio and took out my cell phone, wallet from it. I left my navigator mount on the windshield and put away my navigator in the dash as I had other stuff to carry. I lovingly glanced at the car and proceeded.

But something felt wrong, very wrong. I felt unsafe parking the Scorpio that night, why? I don’t know, but something felt amiss, I re-checked the lock on the door and locked the car with the remote, the immobilizer was active. I rubbished all bad thoughts that came to my mind and I walked home. But just to be sure, I told my building security guard to keep an eye on the car; he promptly obliged and saw where I parked the car.

The next morning at around 8am, I was late for an exam that was scheduled the same day so I hurriedly picked up the Scorpio keys and asked dad to drop me off, dad accompanied me, as we walked down I could not see our car! I closed my eyes and opened them again, the car was not there! I panicked but dad laughed it off and asked me to remember correctly where I parked the car. I told him that I had parked it where we stood!

It then hit me that the car might have gotten towed, but then many others parked the car at the same spot and no car was ever towed. I asked the security guard if he had spotted any towing activity, NO came the answer, my heart sank! The Scorpio was missing! Dad asked me to cool down and dropped me to my exam. All the way to the exam center all I could think of was the Scorpio! Dad assured me that he would check with the police and let me know.

Needless to say, my day was ruined. Somehow I gave my paper and rushed home. I called up dad and he told me that our car was not towed and was still missing! He was in touch with the police and an FIR was lodged. I came home and I was all worked up, a lot of theories were put forward but none of them worked out and after verifying the facts, my worst fears came true,

The Scorpio was stolen!

However hard I try I cannot put how bad I felt in words. I felt like punching that thief in his face! Again, Dad asked me to calm down as getting angry would not solve the problem. We had insurance. Next we inquired about our policy; our agent had renewed it on his own without our telling him to do so, what a savior!

The insurance company was intimated.

I wanted to search for our car, but again Dad stopped me and asked me recollect whatever happened the previous day. I went to flashback mode and had a rough recollection of locking the car with the remote and coming home. But, the immobilizer was active! So how was the car stolen? I was zapped! No theory of ours could explain the theft!

Next I analyzed the timing of the theft. I parked the car at around 12am, my Uncle came home at around 12:30am that night and he saw that the car was there. That meant that the car was stolen after my uncle came home meaning after 12:30am, I went down at around 8am in the morning but some of the newspaper vendors had parked their cycles there, when I questioned them they said that they parked their cycles at around 6am. Clearly the theft was procured between these times. A theft after 5am seemed difficult, so I assumed that it might have taken place between 1am to 4am.

The thief was a professional, how else could he have bypassed the car immobilizer and driven away with the car which was parked just outside the security cabin. It takes immense confidence to pull off such a stunt. Also there are two ATM’s in front of the spot where I parked the car; two guards do an all night duty there. The theft went unnoticed! Not possible, but that is exactly what happened. Ironically the car was also parked in a well lit area, where a lot of people pass through every day.

At home, after having long discussions we left the topic and that day no one spoke anymore about the theft, it was clear that the car was gone. Still there was hope that we would recover it but then if not recovered within a few days the condition of the stolen car could be beyond repair. I searched a lot on the net about the issue and came across a fellow member’s (raj_5004) thread about how someone had attempted to steal his car. That gave me a brief idea on how these guys would operate.

Though the thread was helpful it could not paint the exact picture as many details were proved as a mismatch. Well the Scorpio was gone but to satisfy my anger I wanted to know how it was stolen. At home Dad asked me to drop the issue as the police was doing their job. Secretly, I with my friends tried a lot to locate the car; as soon as we saw any Scorpio on the road we would doubt it and check it for the identification marks I knew of. Alas, we could not locate the car.

All of this investigation led me to know a lot about the 2008 Scorpio M-hawk; one of the crucial things was that, one needed to change the immobilizer code at the dealership to prevent the thief from disabling it easily. It was obvious that these crooks had laptops and Mahindra software to disable the system but still the changed code would have made the crooks take some extra time.

The funny thing being that Mahindra is well aware about how their vehicles are targeted, I say this because they put up a link on their website to help the owners of the stolen Scorpios, in order to locate their vehicle. That said, they say that with the refreshed Scorpio they upgraded the security system. Later from my service advisor I came to know that still cars were getting stolen. I was shocked to learn about the magnitude of such operations. The service advisor also told me about how people would lose their Scorpios to thieves, then buy the Scorpio again and it would be stolen again!

This discussion also revealed that the thieves would follow you for quite some time and would have a spare car with them (Santro, Indica) and they would use the car to flee in case anything went wrong. This explained why I felt eerie the night of the theft. In my subconscious mind I did recollect seeing an Indica two or three times at different places. All of this freaked me out as some said that the thieves followed their targets for days. Anyways, later I got over it. Also as we know that no measure can be termed as foolproof, still a satellite based location system would have helped.

A lot of suspicions arose, some pointed out to the service center, some to the advisor and some to the security guards. The security guard who acknowledged me parking the car told the police that he remembered nothing! Well so be it, nothing could be proved, and I could not blame the security guard as I had parked the car on the street. We knew the service advisor well and I trusted him enough to let him know about the theft, he too gave me valuable insights on how Scorpios were stolen. I tried putting forward a lot of theories but some details were always a mismatch. Given the surroundings the theft in no way was easy.

A few days later the senior inspector of the police station called up dad and told him that he wanted to meet me as I had parked the Scorpio. I bravely told him all I knew about the car and the theft, of course he would know better than me still he was keen on learning about what I knew. Impressed, he asked me the source of my knowledge, Dad said Internet! Anyways, it felt really nice interacting with an inspector who took his duty seriously.

As he left, he assured me that the search will continue. That was the last I heard from him. A lot changed in the meanwhile and soon I realized that even if the vehicle was recovered the reliability would have been compromised so the only thing to look forward to was the insurance claim, at home mostly everyone agreed with me on this front.

October 2010:

Three months time trickled by and every third or fourth day there was news that gangsters stealing cars were nabbed. We could not find our car and soon the police, who were very cooperative at all times, gave us a final report that the Scorpio could not be found! Well this news was not uncalled for since three whole months had passed, still deep in my heart I knew that I had tried to do all I could in the proceedings. That gave me a sense of satisfaction.

A day before the theft incident occurred we had got a brand new Eeco delivered at our place for the odd jobs the Scorpio had to do at times (carrying loads of luggage etc.) Basically the Eeco was our backup car. The Eeco served its purpose well and stood by us all this while, its immense space helped in compensating for the loss of our Scorpio, Still, a loss was a loss.

The insurance company only starts working after the final report is submitted to them and so they did, but they took their own sweet time in getting things done.

Till now we had not even thought about getting another vehicle as nothing was known about when we would get the insurance claim, At the same time we knew that such things could take time, The Eeco which was sheer basic and had a very poor ride quality had started bothering us,

The Tata Aria launch was nearing, it had impressed me way back when I first saw it at the expo.

11th October:

The Aria was launched, overall package, one word: Amazing!

The car had so many features which I always wanted; all of this at an expected value for money price which Tata motors was synonymous for, more so after they showed us what true value meant (Read: Nano). I for once felt great and at one point I felt that this was the car, we were to buy!

But all was not well, later that day the prices were announced and to be frank I never expected a 19L Tata! Later at home, a long discussion followed and it was clear that with such a hefty price tag, this car was out!

November 2010:

Well the Aria was rejected but the bug to buy a good car had bitten me, At home I casually started a discussion and we decided on a budget of around 12L for our next car. My research continued and Team-BHP proved to be a valuable resource. With so many threads around I never had trouble in finding something that interested me. More importantly it showed me what owners had to say about their vehicles.

December 2010:

Impatience grew and the mentality towards buying a budget car started changing, soon it was decided that the budget was going to be considered later as the 12L budget would not get us anything great, and a good feature laden car was going to cost more. Each day in the Eeco was growing painful and troublesome for Dad who preferred to drive on his own and thus the search for a good car began;

The insurance claim formalities continued, still in no way was the claim near, but as researching on a new car did not hurt, we started off;

[II] Fuel type and Contenders:

Fuel Type:

With me getting my permanent license the usage was increasing, dad also drove a lot as his office is quite a distance from home; the modern diesel engines were outclassing their petrol counterparts in performance, refinement and fuel consumption to top it all, I for one preferred the diesel torque boost when compared to the petrol engines. With the Scorpio out of the picture, the usage of the Eeco increased and so did our fuel bill. Thus, Diesel was the answer.


With the automobile market expanding rapidly, the list of contenders also grew, we preferred an auto box if it was offered but our purchase decision was not based on it, with the type of usage we demanded the sedans and all vehicles with a low ground clearance were almost immediately out of sight unless something exceptional caught our eye. Basically, it was clear that we needed an MUV/SUV.

Having said that, it would not be wrong on my part to say that I considered all models from all the segments! However irrelevant was the car to suit our requirement but I loved collecting info on all of them; and I continued. I will not go into the details of all the models that I considered as it is a waste; Basically after dissecting the Indian automobile market I had 4 contenders which are listed below;

Scorpio Vlx AT 4wd Airbag:

This vehicle was our first choice, the emotions attached to our previous Scorpio had not worn off, the love had grown and if you ask me logic in buying, such an old car (though updated and face lifted many times), there was none! This contender was in the list because of our emotional attachment to our previous car,

I went to global gallery in Thane as we had got our previous car from them, to my surprise (Rather shock) the salesperson did not know that such a model existed! He kept pushing me to buy another model which he had in stock; I tried to clarify again and I told him about what I was exactly looking for, also when I asked him to check again if he had the particular model. Same response; No such model exists! The sales guy was least interested in what I wanted to buy and I was least interested in what he wanted to sell, that was it! I left the showroom.

It was obvious that I did not get a TD, heck it wasn’t even offered! I got the TD through another dealer for the older pre-facelift AT model. It was OK. But continuously during the TD the representative tried to discourage me from buying the model i wanted and he was asking me to pick between the automatic version and the 4x4 version. I spoke to the senior management about the particular model I was looking for and they confirmed that such a model existed (thank god for that), the catch; they quoted an 8 month waiting time! Then through an associate we came to know that Mahindra was having supplier issues for the AT 4wd, still the love for the car made us rethink this and I tried all I could to book it (rather buy it).

One more thing that I missed out here was the safety aspect, though Mahindra had introduced two airbags in the Scorpio. The Scorpio had failed the crash test in the US, where Mahindra was planning to launch it. Safety in my books came first, so one more reason was found to reject the Scorpio.

In the meanwhile I came across a fellow member Pramod’s thread (thanks a ton for sharing your experience) and I read that his Scorpio had gone kaput! And as we were contemplating going for the same model; we decided to leave the theft prone Mahindra once and for all!

Cruze LTZ AT:

What to say about this car, one look at it and I was sold! So much equipment at a good price point and what a brilliant power plant to posses, to top it all flooring this car had become addictive!

Also, a few close relatives of mine had bought it and were all praise for it, but the roads in my area were cruel enough to scrape the test car; also Dad was used to driving the Scorpio so he found the lower driving position uncomfortable. The rear seat was also cramped.

We wanted a car with long distance touring capability which could, if needed seat more than 5. Touring capability meant tackling bad roads, thus with a heavy heart,

The Cruze was out!

Innova VX:

Very common, I found it boring also we have one in the family; for me the taxi image kicked it out! But for dad it was one of the best contenders as it was good on the practicality front and was a Toyota. So much has been said about this car and its stellar reliability,

All of this accompanied with its high quality interiors package and great fit and finish levels, this was one car that made all the people in our nation go gaga over the Toyota brand, to be frank I never liked it. The fact also being that it was a near five year old car and the platform was to be updated as it had ended its life-cycle made me further dislike it. Still, I must admit it that it handles like no other vehicle in its class.

Dad went to the extent of booking it and asked me if I had any other contender, I was blank, so I tried hard and convinced myself that the Innova was the car with the least compromise.

It was Shortlisted, but it was nothing special.


Well the Innova made me think of its elder sibling the Fortuner, The first time I saw it I was in love, Sheer presence! And the lovely diesel engine with a full time 4wd system. But sadly when I stepped inside it felt like it was an Innova on stilts and though the engine was great but it had no features, heck even our 2008 Scorpio was better equipped!

Also the ride quality was bouncy; the brakes did stop the vehicle but felt highly inadequate for a vehicle of its size and class, in my opinion the Fortuner NEEDS rear disc brakes! Though it had low ratio 4wd, we were never going to take it off-road so it did not feel worthy of the price tag it carried.

The fact that it was again a near five year old car which was recently face lifted and bought into India also put me off,
I wanted something that was more recent if not the latest, Later I found out that it was a CKD assembled in India, and internationally it carried a much reasonable price.

The presence did tempt me but then a comment made by a salesperson overshadowed my thought, the sales guy was selling an Innova to an old gentleman who was interested in the Xylo. The old gentleman on hearing him speak went home beaming about the Innova. I was checking out the Fortuner and that is when the sales person of the Innova sneaked up behind me and just spoke one line that blew me away! The line was;

”Sir, why do you want to pay a premium and wait endlessly for the Fortuner, when you can get an equally good package for 9.5L less! The Interiors and ride quality of the Fortuner are the same as the Innova”

Of course the sales guy was trying to sell the Innova but on hearing this something clicked and then I somehow felt that going for the Fortuner is not worth it.

[III] Selection Process; Final Decision:

It was only till later that we realized that we had almost doubled our initial budget! That is when it hit us that with no other options left and no other contenders, we should stick to the Innova; the top variant the VX was final.

Somehow, the feeling of placing an order for Innova was not making me feel happy or excited. As I mentioned earlier; we have one in our family, so the excitement disappeared and it felt like the Innova was just an MUV it had nothing special about it. By special I mean something that tugged at the heart was missing. In other words the Innova for me was not desirable. The thought of owning one never made me fall in love with it.

Anyways, I had eliminated all contenders. So, later that month as the New Year approached dad was thinking about booking the Innova and I asked him to go ahead with the booking.

[IV] The Twist!

The ill feeling I had about owning another Innova was about to manifest into something that I would have never imagined. The same day I asked dad to go ahead with the booking, I got an auto magazine and was reading it, suddenly while reading it, an out of the blue contender appeared, no prizes for guessing what the cover story was:

Tata Aria takes on the Toyota Innova!

I was all excited and thrilled, being the person that I am I flipped pages and saw the result; Innova won, I was heartbroken but in a way that cleared my head and I decided that the Innova was the way to go.

Later (after my heartbreak) I went through the contents of the magazine properly; it was then that I realized the comparison was all praise for Tata but in the end, abruptly, the Innova was declared the winner! How?

One Line: “The Aria is overpriced for a Tata!”

When I analyzed Aria from a future owner perspective; I literally burst into laughter! These Auto magazines were just paid to declare winners, now I doubt if they have any knowledge whatsoever! And yes, I canceled my subscription! This was the time where my real analysis started, I came across Moderator GTO’s unbiased detailed review and it played an important role in the decision as it gave me a glimpse on what to expect, Soon I realized that the Aria was way superior to the Innova and my perception towards the Tata changed in a jiffy (Power of Team-BHP).

Well the comparison towards the Innova is inevitable because the base model of the Aria is priced too close to it. Not many understand that the Aria belongs to a segment higher. Anyways all this information was enough for me to consider the Aria as a contender. I called up the Tata dealer and asked for a quote: The difference worked out to be around 3.6L, while the Innova was cheaper, the price difference was significant. I penned down both the positives and negatives of the Aria as well as that of the Innova and soon I found that if and only if “Vitamin M” was a no bar,

The Aria trampled the Innova, Period.

The result was like I expected, Dad is a Tata motors fan, though he had set out for the Innova, when I told him about the Aria he instantly shifted his focus. But, the sticker price of the Aria was high, so like he always does, Dad asked me to justify it, it was not the easiest thing to do, especially for a Tata and at one point in the midst of the discussion I felt that I sounded partial. Still, somehow dad (Tata Fan) felt that I had a point. As I was harping about how good the Aria is, suddenly out of nowhere he told me that he was ok with the price!

But wait, it was only dad who was convinced. The reason I mention this is because at my place, buying a car is a joint family matter and we don’t have a personal car concept though we all use specific vehicles, still one can drive away with whatever he/she desires. So the car had to be approved by each and every family member. Apart from dad others in my family behaved like Tata Bashers! They were all against Tata, I don’t blame them for that, we own a Vista and that car, though represents good value, it is full of niggles and every day something or the other falls apart!

Clearly, no one even wanted to have a look at the Aria, their attitude did not surprise me. All of them thought that I had lost my mind and they asked me about how I could even think of buying a Tata again? And more so, when so much money was at stake, A few quotes that I recollect;

“Choose to Cruze!”

“Go for the Innova it’s the best, what’s Aria?”

“The Aria is not a car it’s a TATA”

“Burn the money! Don’t waste it on a TATA!”

Although many were paranoid towards Tata, I felt that my family had a valid point though the final decision was left to me; I valued all inputs I got. In no way did I want to suffer that too after we were spending so much, What about Reliability, After Sales Support and more importantly Brand Value? This is again where I researched a lot and found out that the Aria had close to no niggles, although long term reliability was not known, I felt that if initial niggles could be done away with that itself said a lot about the product, false sense of security, Yes. But again all the info on the car pointed out to how it was extensively tested. Next I came across the fact that at the service center the Aria owners were given preferential treatment. We were going to keep the car for long so the lower resale value was not an immediate concern.

In a nutshell a lot of votes shifted from here to there, but I for once was sure that the Aria was the best bet as it suited our requirement of safety and my requirement of gadgetry.

January 2011:

The year 2011 arrives, full of hopes towards great things to come and moments that wait to be cherished, sadly, the insurance guys were inefficient as ever and troubled us for every small thing, they clearly told us that they still needed time, the fight was on and time flew by, by this time I totally lost hope. Also I thought that with things going so slow and off-track only a miracle could get us the car. Only if I could know that, a miracle did await me,

The next day after I lost all of my so called hope, all of a sudden, leaving the insurance claim at bay, Dad finally took a decision; With the Aria emerging a winner in our comparison; Dad booked the Aria, What a feeling it was! All I could think of was Joy! (Bmw)

Anyways, soon I landed on earth, and I asked dad about what provoked him to book the car, later he confessed that Mom was furious when he asked her to accompany him in the Eeco, not that mom had not tried the Eeco before, but the fact that dad used it for all his work and behaved as though he was satisfied with it, Angered mom further. She very well knew that we needed a proper vehicle for commuting and the Eeco wasn’t enough, soon after this incident the Eeco’s 13” tire got stuck in a pothole! Well, this was the time when I found out that my angry mom and the potholed roads had better convincing skills than mine!

All of this translated into one line: The Aria was booked!

[V] Which Variant & Color:

It was the top variant (Pride) that appealed the most to me, the safety and equipment it offered made this decision a no-brainer. Also the change of mentality because of using the Eeco for such a long time helped us here; it was clear that after using the inferior Eeco, we wanted the best.

On the other hand making the color and upholstery choice was one of the toughest decisions ever, although now I feel that it was not very tough still, here goes;

Out of the great lot of colors Aria had on offer only a few were available and two were shortlisted:

Night Shade Black:

I liked the Night shade black from day one, but maintaining a dark color was tough and the fact that how cars having a darker shade looked some much older than they actually were, put me off! Still it was tough, I loved the shade and found it unique as no other brand offered a purplish black shade, anyways my heart tugged at it so for me this was the one!

Pearl White:

I for one never considered this color in the decision making but at home my mom and dad were all for white, they thought it looked grand and classy. Still they let me choose and asked me to finalize whatever color I liked, this is when things changed I saw a white Aria on the road and I was stunned! It looked amazing! Still my heart went for the black, Moderator Dippy also advised me to go for the White, end in end head won, and the white was finalized. Later when I thought about it, the white was easier to maintain and looked very royal, so the Pearl White was chosen!


The Aria had two upholstery choices for the top model Black & Plum and Black & Black, since we had gone for the Pearl White; unanimously we chose the latter as it looked great on a white car, the plum somehow looked amiss with the white we had chosen, so we decided on the complete black trim.

[VI] Which Dealer:

Since we had purchased 4 cars over the years from wasan motors this decision was somewhat a no-brainer, I said somewhat because previous experiences were in no way great; but not exactly unsatisfactory either.

The wasan guys previously behaved unprofessional and made us wait endlessly, for the delivery of our Vista, still dad felt that they were good for the major part.

More importantly this time we were not buying a 5L hatch so the expectations were initially set high from our side, but to be completely truthful here, from the beginning we had a sense of security and we cited that if Tata motors was to sell such a pricey vehicle they would not show any kind of unprofessional-ism thus, we proceeded.

The wasan showroom was located near dad’s office and this factor also contributed to the scales tipping in their favor.

[VII] Negotiations, Booking Details and Delivery date:


Imagine the normal scenario: people visit several showrooms, gather loads of data, bargain hard, make false claims and let the dealers fight it out!

Now coming back to my case, Dad just made a call to Wasan motors and asked the Sales Executive to give him a good offer; the Sales Executive sent him a quote, dad found it apt and next the Sales Executive was in the office gleefully accepting the booking amount! That’s it, booking done!

On a side note, the Sales Executive must be praying to god that all his customers should be like that!

The Freebies/discounts that he offered were: Teflon & sun film (combined worth Rs 8000), Matting & Mud flaps.

Since dad was ok with that I did not intervene. Later, it dawned upon me that by booking the car, the way dad did; saved us a lot of time and effort, also bargaining hard on a newly launched car like Aria would not have helped us anyways or so I felt.

Booking Details and Delivery date:

Model: Tata Aria Pride 4x4

Color: Pearl white

Upholstery: Black and Black

Delivery Date: 20th March 2011.

[VIII] Our Savior:

I want to dedicate a small part of this thread to our so called savior, the Eeco; at the time we purchased the Eeco every one was zapped! One question they all asked was “why an Eeco?” the answer to the question; at that time was that the Eeco is our backup car, our Scorpio had niggles and it visited the service center quite often.

Come today, though painful, those nine months without the Eeco are unimaginable! Like I mentioned at the beginning of the thread the Eeco was purchased so that the odd jobs that Scorpio did could be done away with; things like hauling luggage, airport transfers etc.

We called our Eeco “The Breadbox”, nevertheless later it proved its worth. With the Scorpio gone the Eeco was promoted to the position of our primary vehicle. Although we had a Ritz Zxi which my mom primarily used still dad preferred the Eeco as it had huge space and a higher driving position, though one can argue that the Ritz is better, Dad did not want to use it as mom would not have liked to use the Eeco. Well, like a loyal soldier it served us and battled the peak hour traffic!

I have to admit that even with its shortcomings the Eeco is a very spacious vehicle, I for once had helped a friend of mine using the Eeco to move to his new place, he was till the end of the transfer scratching his head and thinking about how the Eeco could fit in so much of his stuff, and as I was leaving, he with his confused face asked me why I had a “kidnapper style” vehicle! (Sent him a link to this thread), Coming back to the topic yes the Eeco proved itself as a backup car!

All of the above said, let me remind you’ll the Eeco cannot be termed as a car, a van perhaps and has many shortcomings like poor ride quality and the fact that it consistently returned a low FE of 8-9 Km/l in the city, True to MARUTI-DNA the rattles and squeaks came along as a standard feature! Also to top it all it did not have a power steering! Initially dad was all praise for the Eeco and its space and how it offered value, as time passed he very well knew the shortcomings of the vehicle and as they say that the rest is history! Like I mentioned above, the day Dad got fed up of it, was the day he booked the Aria.

A picture of our Savior:
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[IX] Dealership Experience:

To summarize the whole process in short I can say that I had a pathetic dealership experience. The sales guy was terribly ill informed, didn't have any knowledge whatsoever about the car. This was in stark contrast to our experience with Toyota showrooms. The sales guys there were sharp, a TD was arranged within 10 min and here at Tata every one of them looked as if they were not paid and were forced to work as slaves. Till the delivery date they could not manage to give me a test drive of the Aria. Shabby and unprofessional was the approach. Still here I can say that the sales rep came to collect all the documents to our office. This was one benefit of choosing the showroom closer to our office. But if I was to rate the management of things out there I would rate it 1/10. The one is only provided because in the end we got our car delivered! Anyways I have explained in detail the troubles we faced;

like I mentioned above Dad gave Wasan motors a call and the sales person instantly sent a mail regarding the price, freebies and accessories available. Soon after which he collected the booking amount and left. Later some communication followed (Nothing Important) and he was in touch with Dad.

I was very busy till the 21st March so I had no plans of calling the dealer before that. All went well after the booking was made; but to my surprise (Rather shock) I received a call from Tata motors on the 13th saying that it was to inform me that they could not deliver the car on 20th March as they were having supplier issues for the GPS and some other electronic modules for the top end model. They said that the delivery will be delayed and will commence only after 5th April.

At first I was shocked because we had made the booking in January which was nearly 2 months prior to the delivery date. While I spoke to them about giving me the delivery on time, they clearly said that I was in no way possible. Instead they suggested that I could go in for a lower spec model of the Aria instead of the Top end one as the supplier issue they were facing was only for the top end model. I felt cheated and next we decided to look out for another vehicle as the dealer’s attitude felt unprofessional. The analysis started again and we started looking out for another vehicle.

The Next day we received a call; it was a person from the senior management of Tata motors and the problem we were facing was explained to him. He was well informed and told us that he knew about our case. We told him that if we would not get the vehicle on time we would be forced to consider some other brand. He asked us for some time and said that he would get back to us the next day. As promised the next day he called and told us that just because our booking was done well in advance; considering ours as a special case he would deliver the car by 26th March.

He also said that this vehicle was out of a special lot manufactured just for us and otherwise temporarily the production had been stopped for the top end model. This news came as a relief, when we asked him further about the same he said that he had confirmed with the plant and only then did he commit to us. Here I must admit that dealing with him was much pleasant than dealing with the dealership personnel. His professional attitude restored our faith in the brand and we were good to go. As he hung up we asked him to keep us updated as the dealership was not very professional, he agreed and assured us that we would get the car on time.

For the next few days all went well, little did I know that a rude shock awaited us! Till the 24th the sales rep assured us that the car has been dispatched and we will be getting it soon. It was the 25th when we realized that the sales rep was taking us for a ride and he himself did not know much. We had no other option but to ask him to forward the matter to his seniors. Luckily the same official we had spoken to earlier called us up and told us that we would be getting the car by the 29th.

Again it looked as if he saved the day. I wanted to conduct a PDI according to Team-BHP check lists, the sales rep showed discomfort when I told him that I wanted to inspect the vehicle before the registration. That made me more adamant to do a PDI, now the issue was that we wanted the car on time and any problem found with the vehicle during PDI could delay the delivery indefinitely.

This was unacceptable so Dad came up with a solution; he asked me to do an inspection on the delivery date so if I spotted anything wrong, we could get it noted. This was a good idea as I would not be unnecessarily worried till we got the vehicle. The wait began; in the meanwhile the sales rep sent us the last five digits of the chassis number. Again my suspicions arose as I could not find the month/year of manufacture of the vehicle with those five digits. We asked him for the proper number and he promised that he would provide us the full number the next day.

Next day the sales guy reverted back and gave the full chassis number, it turned out to be a February manufactured vehicle! Again I was worried because I thought that he was handing over an old Aria. When I spoke to him he clarified that the production for the top variant was stopped in February and that is why the chassis number read out a February make. This answer was satisfying enough as the production had indeed been stopped. The car was manufactured in a special lot and so we decided to proceed.

Come 29th the sales rep calls and says that he does not know the status of the car, wow the dealership experience kept getting better and better. Seniors were involved but the mismanagement was at its top. Dad on the other hand told me that it was of no use talking to the sales rep.

Dad called him "The Wall", you want to know why? Well the sales rep was a wall to his seniors. He would take all the firing and they would not involve themselves. And try asking a wall in your house about the delivery of your car, Well that was the closest feeling one can get while talking to this chap.

There were no seniors in the dealership it was like an abandoned showroom with one finance guy and "The Wall" (our sales rep) would commit mistakes and give us wrong updates and when confronted he would say "Sorry Sir". There was no coordination and two more days passed by. "The Wall" kept telling us that the car was on the way. It was the 31st of March! All deadlines had been breached. This showed that Wasan had really gone to the pits!

Dad and I shared a similar thinking; we thought that we should not reject a good product citing the brand and we should not write off a car just because the service was not good. But as the days passed; our thinking changed. Before we got our car we were facing delays and being forced to deal with junior staff. Tata motors had lost it. That is when another senior official called us and told us that he would try to get the car on time, later he too could not mange to give us the delivery but he billed us and got the temporary registration done. Still, we were not sure of when we would get the delivery of our Aria.

April fool's day arrives; In the evening as i came home i was informed by the security that Wasan motors had sent a car. Initially i thought the guy had lost his mind. But to my surprise Wasan Motors had indeed sent the Aria home! One look at the Aria and my jaws dropped! I called up Dad but to my surprise he was clueless himself. He had received a call saying that the Aria has been dispatched. Now he understood to where! Indeed Tata motors officials were listening and Dad got a call from an official regarding the home delivery of the car! This move was indeed touching, the car seemed perfect and all i had to do was sign a delivery challan! Rest all of the formalities were taken care of and the free accessory installation appointment was taken.

Well to be truthful after driving the car once all of my troubles and bad feelings vanished in thin air. To top it all we got an Email saying that "In lieu of keeping our commitment we have delivered the Aria" after all the troubles we faced at the dealership what more could we ask for! We got our car and got it on time! (well, almost on time)

The way the things were handled lastly (Home delivery of the Aria!) made my day! And for that hats off to Tata motors!

And yes how this delivery ended from unpleasant to pleasant showed what Tata motors was really capable of. I still stand by my rating of 1/10 for the dealership as it was really as bad of what i described it as. But in the end i am a satisfied customer and for that i give the Tata's a 10/10!

[X] Initial Ownership:

1th April 2011 we got our pride home-delivered! The drive so far has been amazing; I am short on words on how to describe the Aria! After the driver who got the car left my place, I hit the road; The Aria was shining and drove like a dream. Contrary to what ACM mentioned neither me nor Dad stalled the Aria once, maybe we are used to the kickback action.

I had to refuel and my uncle who is a Toyota loyalist accompanied me one short drive and he was impressed beyond words, this came as a surprise because he was always against Tata. The first time he sat in the car his perception changed. He suddenly considered the Aria as his next upgrade. He asked me to keep him updated about the FE and overall dynamics.

Well soon I refueled and bought the tire pressure to normal as the tires were under inflated. I decided to fill them up with nitrogen, but thought of doing the same from the service center as the Aria had complex systems, soon I was good to go. The ride quality and grip improved tremendously after this. I drove home and parked the Aria carefully.

I have had multiple reactions and the presence of the car has put me into situations on which i have elaborated ahead.

All of this said a lot and the way people have accepted the Aria on first sight is beyond imagination, My recommendation to all the Tata bashers; have a close look at this Tata. It will blow you mind away.

Come today I completed around 3030kms on the ODO including trips I made to Pune,Hyderabad etc. Rest is below; I plan to make multiple trips soon and will keep updating this thread as and when required.

The Aria aka Toothless:

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Last edited by Zappex : 18th April 2011 at 16:47. Reason: Addition
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Old 2nd April 2011, 10:53   #2
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Default Re: Tata Aria Pride

Good bits (+ve’s):

Equipment: Many segment firsts like GPS, ESP, Cruise control, Rain sensing wipers etc. On this front the Aria is loaded up to the brim! Though many people say that the Cruise control present will be less used, I wish to clarify that to me it is pretty useful. The music system is also very well equipped with 6 speakers, iPod connectivity, USB input, AUX input etc.

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6 airbags, All wheel disc brakes, EBD, ESP, traction control, full time 4WD and a hydro formed chassis: the list does not end! Add to that a company claimed 4 star crash rating. This was a very important parameter while choosing the Aria, Safety was considered first.


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For a Tata this is what I call a big leap, this had to come out as a positive. But still listed as a positive? Any Tata owner must be shocked on reading this! But believe me it is a positive, the interiors look fresh and Range rover inspired. Rough edges are still there but IMO the interiors are 80% there. The quality of some parts used here is of a very high grade but some parts are equally bad. Again, the overall quality is extremely good, so few rough edges are NOT a deal breaker.

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The overall feel of the interiors has to be felt in person to be believed. The dash and center console have a clean understated look, all the buttons blend with the interiors. The center mounted screen gives a very premium look to the interiors; I especially like the Tata logo that the screen displays once the system is turned on. The interiors are one thing that pulled me towards the car; this can be an important factor for future owners as the Fortuner interiors are a dull place to be in comparison to the Tata where the interiors are a nice place to be in with really nice touches around. In this department leaving aside a bit on the fit and finish front the Aria beats the Fortuner; fair square!

The fit and finish is exceptionally good, I wouldn’t go as far as calling it Toyota good but it is not far off, the gap here is smaller than you would expect. No panel gaps seems to be the mantra here, I have found none so far. That said the Aria feels like many components put together, while the Innova feels like one piece. Again; this may be my perception and many may not feel the same way, but this may be because of the superior engineering that went into the Toyota.

Air conditioner: The AC is an absolute chiller; 10 strategically placed vents make the cooling lightening quick and very effective. The third row has its own set of controls on the roof and the first and second row cooling is controlled from the dash. The idea of placing the AC vents on the pillars is truly worth applauding, the blow of air felt in the third row is very impressive. The downside is that the AC tends to get noisy at higher fan speeds. Another issue i noticed was that during recirculation mode a lot of fresh air is drawn in. Will get that checked.

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The Automatic Climate control system has switches and knobs which are of very good quality; the click sound is very much present when you use them. The display for the ACC looks really good with the blue back lighting.


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The steering wheel is of a perfect size; it is a tad small than what you expect but feels good to hold. The horn pad is not light touch oriented and has to be pressed firmly.

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The buttons for the cruise control and Phone Bluetooth are very responsive and have a premium clicking sound when you use them. Just for comparison sake; the cruise control buttons in the Scorpio felt very hard/ crude and unresponsive while using them. The buttons in the Scorpio wear out the thumbs. Not in case of the Aria, the cruise control buttons are light and nifty. The placement of the controls is a bit improper on which I have elaborated ahead.

Instrument Cluster:
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The ODO is very simple and clear. It is has a nice green marking showing when peak torque is generated. The small screen displays DTE,Distance etc. apart from that the display also shows warnings like "Wiper washer fluid low", "Park Brake on" etc. It has a nice door open display where the opened door is highlighted. At night it has very good back-lighting which looks rich.

Ride & Handling:
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In this segment nothing comes close; the ride quality is exceptional. With the Aria sporting the 17” alloys wheels initially I was skeptical about the ride quality they will deliver, one TD over some bad patches and I was smiling! The alloys and tire size is perfect and they work in favor of the car. Be it any pothole or bump the Aria glides through it. That said much more accomplished cars (Read: Fortuner) can’t match the Aria here, Made in India advantage, you bet!

Let me be clear here and tell you’ll that the ride quality is given more preference over handling, the first time I drove, the Aria folded around me! It never lets you feel how big it actually is (Apart from Parking/Turning). The Handling is almost as good as the Innova, but exceptional as far as SUV’s go. I say this because the steering does offer feedback and is not like the dead ones we have previously seen from Tata. Again, feedback is very close to the Innova; hit a corner and Under-steer is very much present. Body roll is felt only while cornering hard. The scales being tilted towards the ride quality make quick lane changes an issue and this is where the Aria feels unsettled. The Aria feels best when driving in a straight line (Touring/Cruising). Harsh/rash driving is not meant for this vehicle.

While cornering the body roll is kept in check at all times, but it is present. The grip levels are pretty high and all the electronics do a good job to keep the Aria in control. That said let me make it clear that Aria is not meant for hard cornering; it is a huge vehicle and asks for respect while being driven. Again it is very hard to believe that the Aria has a body on frame construction as it drives like a vehicle with a Monocoque construction. This shows how well the engineers have tuned the chassis.

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You feel like pulling the seats out of the car and taking them home! Plush and fatigue free, the material used here is of a very high quality. The under thigh support and back support is indeed outstanding, I can’t say the same about the third row. The excellent seats accompanied with good ride quality boast of long distance touring capabilities the vehicle has.

Refined, silent engine and better gearbox (Lower NVH):

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As soon as you open the bonnet you are greeted by a neatly presented engine bay which has a high quality engine cover. This is usually rare as cost cutting is done here. Not in the case of Aria though which sports one with colors!

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The engineers have worked on this motor and it has paid off, the better damping and the flywheel translates into this motor being termed as a gem when it comes to Tata’s lineup of motors. The engine has decent refinement and pulls cleanly. Here I wish to clarify that the Aria does not like to be rushed, Sedate driving suits it best. The NVH has definitely been kept in check and one with little know how will never believe that the Aria is a diesel.

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The gearbox feels much better than that of the safari; The shift gates well defined with better ratios that aid drivability, still there is room for improvement, one can’t call the gearshift slick. The gear lever has embossed gear numbering which feels long lasting; the lever is a tad smaller and is more like the one we have in sedans. That being said the gear ratios are better suited to the highways where the tall gearing makes the Aria feel at home.

Fuel Economy: When driven sedately, it is capable of setting benchmark for competition! 11km/l in the city and 13-14 km/l on the highway is the usual mileage you can expect. Some report amazing highway mileage. I myself managed around 20 km/l on a particular stretch. The FE is very sensitive to acceleration input, one shove at the accelerator and the FE drops. Few of my intercity runs while driving with a light foot have got me 14 km/l in the city.

Space & Storage:
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One of the biggest positives around, Tata has never made a cramped vehicle and the Aria is no different. There is loads of space in the vehicle and the view from the front is very good. The third row is cramped (design oversight) but you get much better boot space in return. The visibility from the driver and passenger seats is amazing, the all round airiness is very much felt in the cabin. The Aria has lots of storage places be it the roof or the dash, the hand rest present in the second row also has storage. The boot space is bigger than one will expect. The Aria also has big door pockets for magazines/bottles. There are cup holders for each passenger; these small details make the car feel special. To top it all I received a complement from a person who finds the Xylo cramped, saying that for him the Aria was a benchmark; when it comes to spaciousness! But he instantly mentioned that the third row of the Xylo was much better.

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The “Toothless” grill accompanied by those stunning headlamps (their styling deserves an award!) Look great. Dual exhausts and proper proportions make this vehicle a winner here. The muscular wheel arches and the sloping glass at the end make it look superb. I still feel that the Christmas styled tail lamps could be done away with. There is no roof antenna for the music system, Instead it is printed on the sloping glass at the rear. This gives the vehicle a good clean look. ARIA embossed on the chrome strip above the number plate; looks very classy. The fresh design of the alloys takes the muscular look to another level. Also one crucial aspect is that the Aria has a Non taxi image (Read: Innova) for me this was crucial as I wanted a car that could stand out in an ocean of cars. Still, I have been optimistic here as when the cheaper 2WD variant is launched the exclusivity will reduce. But till then, it won’t hurt!

The Presence/Reactions: The styling leads to a stunning form which has loads of presence on or off the road, second look guaranteed. The reactions are worth watching, few of the Tata bashers I know of were as usual talking about How the Innova is the best, and When the Aria was parked in front of them their jaws dropped! Many Innova owners have themselves loved the car.

Till date every-time i have driven the car I've had all sorts of people glancing at the car and overtaking me to get a second look! Many of the said people have taken pics!

The first time i went to refuel. The attendants immediately attended to me and I was their center of attention! Soon a crowd gathered and started asking me all sorts of questions I responded to most of them. A Nano owner was also checking out the car; it was like he was trying to tell me that both are TATA’s!

One more incident i recollect was when we had stopped at a restaurant, again in no time a crowd gathered! Soon, we were done with our meal. We had to ask people to let us through! Even as we were leaving few people stood by us and were staring at the car till we were out of sight! Our rear view mirror was filled by awed faces!

About the presence, while you drive any other car the menacing face of the Aria in the rear view mirror become reason enough to give way! I myself have experienced this; Many times while driving on the highway other cars gave way automatically! One thing that I must add is that pictures don’t do justice to The Aria, People should do is check out the Aria in person , Because when seen in person your perception towards the brand shifts like a pack of cards, the car blows you over! The paint quality/finish is exceptional; the deep glossy colors the Aria wears give it true character.

Small touches: The small details the engineers took care of make you feel special while using the vehicle. I have listed some of the touches I truly appreciate/love:

Puddle lamps: Really helpful at night.
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Roof mounted storage bins: Treasure hunt, anyone?
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Chrome door handles: Very Nice to use.
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Extendable sun-shades: Effective and aid convenience.
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High Quality Butterfly wipers: Clean sweeping with good placement.
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Auto lift bonnet: Very practical addition
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Neatly stored tool kit: Neat touch
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Hydraulic jack: A must have.
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Charging facility/Cup holders for all rows: Very thoughtful; attention to detail.
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Chiller glove box: Chills bottles in no time!
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Pillar mounted AC vents: One of the best touches around, Notice side Airbag.
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Vanity mirror with lights: Make up Or No Makeup; Still a nice touch.
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Radio antenna printed on rear glass: Gives the Aria a clean look (No more broken antennas!)
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Reclining middle row: The Ultimatum in comfort.
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These deserve a special mention; the side view mirrors (F430?) are by far the best I have ever used, superb sideward's view. To explain this in a better way; one can see two lanes from a single mirror. The downside is that one needs to be careful as they tend to brush against other cars in traffic.

Last edited by Zappex : 18th April 2011 at 16:21. Reason: Addition
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Old 2nd April 2011, 11:02   #3
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Default Re: Tata Aria Pride

Bad bits (-ve’s):

Brand Value (Read: TATA): Even a logo thief will think twice before stealing this one, do I need to say more?
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Pricey: Some perceive the Aria as exceptional value, I on the other hand somewhat agree with GTO on this front. The reason I still went ahead with the buy is that it suited my requirement and there was a huge void in this segment because of which there were really no clear competitors to this vehicle.

Cramped 3rd row:
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Third row is short on leg and head room, the middle seat can be pushed forward but still it is short on space. In my books this makes Aria a vehicle that can seat 5 which, and if needed can seat 7. Here I must admit that lesser space in the 3rd row, translates into better boot space. The showroom guys say that it is meant for kids; Still, A sliding third row would have been a good option for the occasional Adults.

Center screen/Sat-navigation:
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The GPS present in the Aria is not at all user friendly; a touch based system would have done wonders here. The maps provided by Navtec (Now a Nokia company) are not very detailed and lack finesse. Add to that a not so great display with age old rendering, the central display is of a proper size but comes with bad display quality. This clearly proves that the GPS cannot be a deal breaker. I for one needed the GPS feature in my car, but because of the no so great experience with the OEM GPS I was forced to purchase an MMI Vx240 for my navigation needs. The MMI maps are much better when compared to the Navtec ones (In India). The Vx240 being a touch based device provides a much better experience. The only downside to the Vx240 is that updates are steeply priced and without them the device is useless. One way to convince myself here is that on the Aria, Navtec provides lifetime free updates, so I can look forward to the maps getting better. The thing here is that the GPS is not good and it is useful if you want to boast, utility wise I don’t see it solve any hardcore navigation purpose.

Brakes: The Aria is equipped with All wheel disc brakes, though the breaking is improved because of this; The two tonne weight makes the Aria nose heavy while breaking and the breaking is significantly let down by the nose dive. Again this is not a deal breaker; the Aria still has better breaking abilities than rivals.

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The horn in the Aria is meek and though it feels adequate a bit firmer tone may have helped. The horn pad on the steering is not aligned to perfection. A soft touch horn would have bettered this. The hellas present sound fine but when one honks continuously the horn sounds as if it will conk off. An electrical glitch i suppose.

Music system:
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On paper with all the goodies it looks like a winner, in reality however; the sound quality is strictly average. Tata’s could have done better in this department. There is distortion while using FM and this could have been bettered. While using the AUX the sound quality is usually very good. On the feature front however one can’t expect more. That being said, the controls are not well laid out; the knob in the center is for the menu and the volume switches are placed on the side, again not properly sorted out.

Niggles: On team bhp itself a lot of Aria owners are complaining about the electronics malfunctioning and their cars shaking (Read: LobsterB, pbali). Personally, I have not faced such issues till now. Still, this had to be a part of the bad bits.

That being said below are some niggles I have been facing:
  • From day one the USB port of the music system is not working.
  • Rattling noise from the boot.
  • Creaking noise while opening/closing the bonnet.
  • The panel behind the rear wiper where there is a provision for the sub-woofer has come off.

Equipment skimping: The Aria is loaded on the equipment front, how does it get negatives on this front? When Tata motors decided to go all out on this vehicle it surprises me so as to why they missed out on some crucial premium features! Don’t get me wrong here I am not saying that I don’t appreciate all the equipment present; I just feel that some features/conveniences should not have been left out. Here is the list of things that I would have liked to see in the Aria:
  • Tire pressure monitoring system
  • Dead pedal
  • Steering reach adjustment
  • Central lock/unlock button
  • Sunroof
  • Start stop button
  • Power adjustment seats
  • Parking sensors: The top model comes with a reverse camera but shockingly does not have sensors!

Ergonomics issues: What’s that? This is a question any sane person will ask when I talk about a 19L vehicle and ergonomic issues. But with the Aria I have myself found many ergonomic blunders though some of them will go away when one gets used to them still I feel that they should not have been there in the first place. For the benefit of all I have listed a few of them below;

The front AC vent on the driver side blows out cold air on your fists or knees and cannot be much adjusted; instead you have to shut it off.
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Foot well is cramped with the pedals slightly off set to the right also the pedals are a bit highly placed.
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A shorter driver will find the Steering placed too close to him, I for one like it this way.
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To enter the third row when one folds the right side of the middle row the seat gets stuck and fouls with the rear AC vents.
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The leather and fabric gets dog eared in some places when the seats are folded.
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The steering controls foul with hands while turning/reversing the car.
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Just below the USB slot, cup holders are present but if you want to use the USB slot with a normal sized pen drive the cup holders located below are rendered useless.
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The roughed up gear lever is lower than you expect, while this feels good while driving with the hand rest folded. Once the hand rest is used the gear lever becomes difficult to reach.
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The handbrake lever has to be pulled till the very top and only then is it effective.
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Last edited by Zappex : 18th April 2011 at 16:22. Reason: Addition
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Old 2nd April 2011, 11:02   #4
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Default Re: Tata Aria Pride

Smaller yet significant Things:

The doors need some extra effort to shut, though once closed, feel safe; The German ‘thud’ is no where to be found.
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Some panel gaps are still present: Nevertheless shut lines are uniform
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One of the most important instructions, is stuck on the edge of the front door like an afterthought sticker! C'mon Tata is it that difficult to get your spellings right?
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OEM Door sill plates: A nice touch.
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European style headlamp switch: Built to last.
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Foam under the hood: Looks like a cheap afterthought
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Chrome inserts in door handles: Superb attention to detail.
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The rain and light sensor: Very effective.
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The reverse camera: Cleverly positioned.
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AC vents for the third row: Surprisingly effective.
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Driver side controls: Truly premium switches.
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Good Quality/ Chunky Badge: Looks Rich.
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Integrated Turn Indicators: Thoughtful addition.
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Look what I found: More AC vents and a cup holder!
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The middle row armrest with storage: Useful, closes firmly.
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Last edited by Zappex : 18th April 2011 at 16:11. Reason: Addition
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Old 2nd April 2011, 11:02   #5
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Default Re: Tata Aria Pride

Miscellaneous Points; to ponder:
  • ESP off switch removed: Tata motors removed the ESP off switch from the center console, meaning ESP cannot be switched off and it is on all the time. Tata motors feels that it can be misused in India as such complex systems are less known about here. The issue here is that while using the vehicle off-road in certain situations having ESP ON can pose a problem, Anyways as discussed earlier it does not make much of a difference under daily driving conditions.
  • Conservative state of tune: The engine has the same output as the safari; Tata’s should have improved the power and torque further. An output of 170bhp would also give substantial difference between the two. That said the power feels adequate and in no way is the Aria underpowered. But I would have loved to some more power. Yet again when seen from Tata’s point of view they might have eliminated a potential failure by providing a proven conservative state of tune.
  • Tug to open: This feature is present in many vehicles; when you pull the door handles at the first tug they release the lock and on the second tug they open the door. However on the Aria one has to pull up the door locks again and again. The absence of a Central lock/unlock button worsens this further. Still, citing accidental opening of doors this might be seen as a good move.
  • Reliability & TASS: The Aria has still not proved to the world how reliable it is; IMO it is much better off than the safari. With so many electricals around it becomes tough to judge long term reliability but the 4 years/150000kms warranty does give out a certain degree of confidence. The un-premium after sales support is a concern. But, the current owners say that with the Aria’s they treated preferentially, I can only comment on that after I get my services done. That said the experience of TASS for our vista has been a pain so far. With more Nanos hitting the road I don’t have high hopes.
Concluding summary:
But then you can ask me that where does one get to see so many negatives along with the positives? Well that itself partly answers the question! How? Read on; admittedly, the Aria has its shortcomings, it has negatives and on the other hand it has its strong points, jack of all, and master of none? I’d say master of some! That ‘some’ suited our requirement like no other. And it appealed to us and this, in some way is more of a heart decision. Many factors such as long term reliability, niggles and the Tata badge have been less valued. The price if you ask me could have been more realistic and instead of testing the brand value, Tata motors could have priced it up to 1.5L cheaper. But here is the catch; they have worked on the product and have tried to deliver a good vehicle from day one, where I would have loved the price to be cheaper there itself, would I have hated to have a bad experience associated with the product. But here I must clarify that the one buying the Aria must be patient and make this clear while purchasing the Aria that; though it is a good product the experience of buying or servicing may not be as good as competitors. But for the money you pay what you get is a really good machine from the Tata’s, the dealership experience in my view is the worst I have ever had. But the way Tata's handled the issue in the end is worth applauding. That being said the higher pricing perches the Aria to another segment a segment that is unknown. And definitely won’t see mass sales till the market accepts it, But now has the fact settled in my mind that if they would have gone for a lower pricing with (more) niggles, quality issues and a much worsened setup, what would be the point! The price of the Aria is hard to justify at first and trust me it has been very difficult for me to digest it. But once you get past the part associated with the leap of faith, the Aria delivers!

PS Note:

I owe a special thanks to the Mods for bearing up with my requests and letting me exploit my full potential via the assembly line section. I would also like to thank Dippy for the suggestions he made during the buying process.

Last but not the least i would like to thank Ratan Tata for making this gem of a car; Reality.

Also I have re-sized all Images of this post to accommodate as many pictures as possible. Please feel free to ask for specific shots.

@All: Thanks for bearing up with me! I just noticed that I haven't used smiley's, Better late than never!

Last edited by Zappex : 18th April 2011 at 18:47. Reason: PS Note:
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Old 2nd April 2011, 11:07   #6
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Default Re: Tata Aria Pride

Random Exterior Shots:

Front 3/4th: The best Angle.
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The Menacing front: Get out of the way!
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Chromed Grill: Indians love chrome, but so much?
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The backside: Hate those Indica styled Tail lamps, Notice Dual exhausts.
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The side profile: Very well Proportioned.
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The curved roof-line: Crv or not; Looks great!
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The distances await...
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Last edited by Zappex : 18th April 2011 at 16:18. Reason: Resizing Images
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Old 18th April 2011, 19:02   #7
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Default Re: Tata Aria Pride 4x4 : White Exterior with Black Interiors

wow, now thats a truly wonderful review.
Glad you are enjoying your vehicle, and the Tata niggles have not come your way. Looks like Tata is serious about quality.
I have a question regarding the AC.
When the air circulation mode is set to "internal" do you get dust etc., in the vehicle?
You would probably need to drive on a dirt track at speed so that lot of dust gets kicked up.

Also when behind a very polluting bus/truck, do you get diesel exhaust smell inside the vehicle, when the circulation mode is set to internal?

The reason I ask this is because the safari has this niggle, which is not technically possible to fix(you can call it a design flaw). If Tata has somehow managed to fix this thing, it will be very useful to us, esp since I am allergic to dust and its a big problem on our travels.
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Old 18th April 2011, 19:44   #8
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Default Re: Tata Aria Pride 4x4 : White Exterior with Black Interiors

Originally Posted by tsk1979 View Post
wow, now thats a truly wonderful review.
Glad you liked it, I love your Travelogues.

Originally Posted by tsk1979 View Post
Glad you are enjoying your vehicle, and the Tata niggles have not come your way.
Some have come my way (Listed). But then one has to be prepared.

Originally Posted by tsk1979 View Post
When the air circulation mode is set to "internal" do you get dust etc., in the vehicle? Also when behind a very polluting bus/truck, do you get diesel exhaust smell inside the vehicle, when the circulation mode is set to internal
Nope. I was referring to some smells that get drawn in. It does not occur frequently. I made a Mum - Hyd - Mum run recently and there were one or two instances when the outside smell was drawn in. Post first service the issue seems to be resolved. About the dust,smoke etc. No such problems in the Aria.

I cannot comment about the issue you are facing in the safari, I Believe that with the Aria Tata's have provided new systems.

Last edited by Zappex : 18th April 2011 at 19:48.
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Old 18th April 2011, 19:48   #9
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Default Re: Tata Aria Pride 4x4 : White Exterior with Black Interiors

Superb review. Let me be the first fellow AriaN to congratulate you..

It almost felt like I am looking at my car. I tried really hard to get black and black interiors for myself but had to settle with plum. though plum combo is also good looking and not like figo's coral dash atleast

The car is to an extent free of niggles but one can't be sure. My car does give minor problems at times like showing tcs, esp, abs error, reverse camera not engaging, vibrations but they are a one off cases.

You have mentioned how there is rattling heard at the back. It is most probably the jack cover that is causing that sound.

Enjoy your Aria.. it is a very good car and you wont regret the decision ever. I am in love with it.

Last edited by psbali : 18th April 2011 at 19:50. Reason: addition.
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Old 18th April 2011, 19:56   #10
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Default Re: Tata Aria Pride 4x4 : White Exterior with Black Interiors

Originally Posted by psbali View Post
Superb review. Let me be the first fellow AriaN to congratulate you..Enjoy your Aria.. it is a very good car and you wont regret the decision ever. I am in love with it.
Thank you for your wishes.

Originally Posted by psbali View Post
It almost felt like I am looking at my car.

Originally Posted by psbali View Post
I tried really hard to get black and black interiors for myself but had to settle with plum. though plum combo is also good looking and not like figo's coral dash atleast
I quite liked the plum combo myself, But trust me the Black looks very classy.

Originally Posted by psbali View Post
The car is to an extent free of niggles but one can't be sure. My car does give minor problems at times like showing tcs, esp, abs error, reverse camera not engaging, vibrations but they are a one off cases.
My car has not shown such symptoms, Like I said earlier one has to be prepared.

Originally Posted by psbali View Post
You have mentioned how there is rattling heard at the back. It is most probably the jack cover that is causing that sound.
Nope. Its not the cover, will update with the progress on that issue.

Last edited by Zappex : 18th April 2011 at 20:26.
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Old 18th April 2011, 20:05   #11
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Default Re: Tata Aria Pride 4x4 : White Exterior with Black Interiors

Very nice writeup and your attention to detail and observation is indeed something worth admiration.
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Old 18th April 2011, 20:06   #12
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Default Re: Tata Aria Pride 4x4 : White Exterior with Black Interiors

Originally Posted by tsk1979 View Post
wow, now thats a truly wonderful review.
Glad you are enjoying your vehicle, and the Tata niggles have not come your way. Looks like Tata is serious about quality.
I have a question regarding the AC.
When the air circulation mode is set to "internal" do you get dust etc., in the vehicle?
You would probably need to drive on a dirt track at speed so that lot of dust gets kicked up.

Also when behind a very polluting bus/truck, do you get diesel exhaust smell inside the vehicle, when the circulation mode is set to internal?

The reason I ask this is because the safari has this niggle, which is not technically possible to fix(you can call it a design flaw). If Tata has somehow managed to fix this thing, it will be very useful to us, esp since I am allergic to dust and its a big problem on our travels.
Its truly a well written report.

Sorry about your Scorpio theft, but somethings happen for better is'nt it....

Tanveer Bhai... I am surprised at this question of yours.

I dont have this odour issues in my Safari. Its always on Re-Circulate Mode. never ever has any outside odour reached our nose. Very surprising........

Well Zappex.

Have a great troublefree ownership.
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Old 18th April 2011, 20:22   #13
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Default Re: Tata Aria Pride 4x4 : White Exterior with Black Interiors

Originally Posted by Abhijat View Post
Very nice writeup and your attention to detail and observation is indeed something worth admiration.
Glad you liked the write-up, Thanks.

Originally Posted by PAVAN KADAM View Post
Its truly a well written report, Have a great troublefree ownership.
Thanks, I sure hope I do.

Originally Posted by PAVAN KADAM View Post
Sorry about your Scorpio theft, but somethings happen for better is'nt it....
Well, If you ask me now I would say yes. But when I look back; those 9 months in the Eeco have been a heck of a ride!

Last edited by Zappex : 18th April 2011 at 20:24.
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Old 18th April 2011, 20:32   #14
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Default Re: Tata Aria Pride 4x4 : White Exterior with Black Interiors

This is a sensational review, congrats on your pride! Take pride in caring for your ride and she will always stand by your side!
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Old 18th April 2011, 20:37   #15
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Originally Posted by sidindica View Post
This is a sensational review, congrats on your pride!
Thanks sid!

Originally Posted by sidindica View Post
Take pride in caring for your ride and she will always stand by your side!
Good one!
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