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Old 28th April 2009, 02:18   #31
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Thanks for all the comments, guys!

It seems the A Star is a very good car as well. I'll keep all the suggestions in mind.

In the meantime, whats the source for import cars in India?

Are there companies that specialize in selling import cars? Do they mostly sell used imports or new? If I want a used import but I am very clear about what I want and cannot be located, can some company work with me to purchase and import a unit?

It would be fantastic if I could get an E36 or E46 M3 or an M Roadster (of the Z3 generation).

And yes, I am aware that it seems pretty crazy to be considering Astars on one hand and M3s on the other, but its not all that crazy.

On one hand, I want to understand what inexpensive options I have for city use in Delhi or Chandigarh, but at the same time I am also trying to understand what the opportunities would be for me to continue to enjoy the sort of performance and handling I am used to here for pleasure driving in India. Nothing to say that I can't have both types of cars!

Last edited by Harbir : 28th April 2009 at 02:22.
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Old 28th April 2009, 02:26   #32
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The main problem with imports would be maintenance and spares, apart from the right folks to work on it, that could cost a packet.
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Old 28th April 2009, 06:19   #33
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I can do all the work myself. I do all the work on my own cars here, I have the tools, and I know where I can source parts. Not an issue as long as there are no customs rules preventing import of parts.
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Old 28th April 2009, 11:38   #34
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Originally Posted by Harbir View Post

The interesting thing is, while I have little regard for Honda Civics and Toyota Corollas and Hyundai Vernas, I am full of appreciation for the 5lac and below cars because they provide honest simple functionality at what is, to me, a ridiculously low cost, and I appreciate their simplicity.

So with that, let me share with you the cars I am interested in:

1. Maruti Gypsy King.

you may not like it today, go for a petrol Safai instead. Bad Idea

2. a second hand Ford Mondeo.

you can get one for even as low as 4L or less, but it is a very bad idea. mantenance will be hell. Bad Idea.

3. Second hand old model Honda Accord. My dad has one and I think its a bloody fantastic car for India. It is unbelievably reliable and durable, plus it has just the sort of efficient, driver friendliness and isolation from the madness of Indian roads to make it the most pleasant car.

Very good idea, reliable, cheap to maintain. (comparatively) fun to drive. Go for the V6 if possible, and don;t bother with the fuel effeciency. But v6 is only available as a auto so if auto is a no no then go for 2.4 Ltrs.

4. A suzuki Swift ZXi or VDi. cheap, nippy, good to drive, just wonderful.

good but then buy new - get a petes box, mag wheels and wider tyres added.

5. a second hand Ford Ikon 1.6 Rocam.

moderate idea in todays time, but still an Accord is a better idea so why bother.

6. Octavia VRs, maybe, but the reliability issues and dishonesty of its dealers, I am not so sure about this one.

go for it if you like it, a second hand one for 6L, how much can you hurt your pocket in the (2L max damage in a couple of years.) if you are lucky not as much? I recommend it for the build and driving fun especially as you dont want an auto. Feature rich and sturdy car.

7. second hand maruti Zen. yes, I mean that. This car has always impressed me with how light and easy it is to drive in the congestion of Indian city traffic.

Bad idea in todays times for an NRI. Get a new Astar instead it is the new zen.

8. alternatively I could go for an import. ideally a second hand but good condition, low mileage E36 M3. or an MX-5. or a E39 E530i. or maybe an LS400. But I've no idea what the prices on these are like in India.

hard to maintain in india, dont try this unless you fall for one that is a steal.

Anyway, as you can see, my thoughts are all over the place, from zens to gypsies to M3s.

your input and reactions are most eagerly sought!!
Answers in bold in line.
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Old 28th April 2009, 20:58   #35
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Harbir, once you get the rpms cooking, the A-Star is a fun hatch to drive. But the low end response is below average. And the engine feels strained at high rpms.
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Old 28th April 2009, 21:12   #36
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Why aren't you considering bringing your car down?
Worried about customs?
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Old 28th April 2009, 21:29   #37
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Left Hand Drive.

What a pain in the behind that is.
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