Team-BHP > What Car? > Hatchbacks

View Poll Results: Which car do you like??
Alto 94 31.86%
Spark 205 69.49%
Multiple Choice Poll. Voters: 295. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 14th June 2010, 03:54   #1
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Default Alto-800 or Spark

I don't know if a thread like this exists but i sure have got lot of PM's from fellow BHPians asking me about which one of them to go for considering the fact that i own both of these cars and have driven them around pretty much across the country.

There are many fellow BHPians confused about which one to buy considering the pricing , FE , power , utility , after sales , personal experience etc so i though that this would be a appropriate place to discuss all the questions/queries etc.

MODS - Please move/merge this thread if it's not applicable
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Old 14th June 2010, 08:13   #2
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Finally, Harry has started a thread comparing his two small modern chariots.

I vote for Alto as I bought it after considering Spark.

Alto over Spark

Best FE guarantee(20+ without A/C/18-16 with)
Good high speed stability, brakes inspire confidence
Very mod friendly(Its a Suzuki, afterall)
In fact has better elbow room in rear than spark

= Agile Length less Trustworthy Outperforming
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Old 14th June 2010, 08:58   #3
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Nice thread Harish. I agree with JustCause's points. Alto for me too, Its the best No Nonsense Car Sub 3lakh(Ex-Showroom) category. The Sparky is not too far, It has got its own charm and plus points.

Last edited by mnhegde : 14th June 2010 at 09:03.
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Old 14th June 2010, 09:44   #4
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I get to drive a Spark now and then.

It feels more spacious than Alto and is.
It looks better buil.
It has better interiors.
It has bad FE.
It doesn't handle like Alto.
Its is costlier than Alto.
Cheaper to maintain!

For me Alto
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Old 14th June 2010, 09:58   #5
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I voted for the Spark since it is a more spacious, modern, proven in terms of reliability and moreover very spacious compared to the Alto.
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Old 14th June 2010, 10:27   #6
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I agree with JustCause.

I have not driven a Spark, so I wont compare it with Alto. But based on the 3 year experience I have with Alto, I'd say

1. Good FE (12-14 in city, 16-19 in highway) with Aircon on.
2. Cheaper to maintain (most spares are economically priced)
3. Good performance on highways upto 120+ kmph
4. Great Aircon for its class.

Points 1 & 2 appeal most to the budget conscious buyers. For occasional highway enthusiasts #3 may appeal. But Alto is not a performance car, it shows its limitations with nervous handling beyond 120 kmph.

Some of the cons that may prominently come on the top is : Little sluggish in city driving with Aircon on. Requires proper gear change to prevent knocking. Certainly cramped in the rear and not a tall-boy, so Ingress / egress may be difficult for elders.

My suggestion is : Take a TD of both vehicles. Keep your mind and heart open. Ask the show-room employee who travel with you to keep shut. Drive in your style and find out which one makes you smile more, and makes you confident. After all there are no perfect cars! But you can find one which suits most of your needs.

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Old 14th June 2010, 10:29   #7
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Its spark, don't even compare both, they are in different category.

Spark has....

Better interiors
Better build
More spacious and comfortable interiors
More powerful
Better handler, miles ahead of alto,santro,wagonr.
Better ride(All Gas shocks) than alto,santro,wagonr.
Refined engine and silent than most cars out there.
Best in class cabin sound insulation.
Better default tires, Apollo 155/70 Tubeless tires, where as maruti provides 145/80
Low maintenance(3 year offer)
Ground clearance 170 to alto's 160
So all the above points makes it better long distance cruiser.

But alto has definitely better F.E than spark
Slightly more boot space than spark
Much better resale value.

After sale service differs from places, here in kerala GM service is equal to maruti or even better.
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Old 14th June 2010, 11:09   #8
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I bought the Alto after evaluating the Spark. I liked it's build quality,the space, and slightly higher displacement, but would not call it leagues ahead in these departments. Marginally better, that is all. Went for Alto for the following reasons;

1) Known devil, well proven on Indian roads. Spark was an unknown quantity for me. I thought when it was time to change the car after a few years, THAT would be a good time to buy Spark (or any other GM product), if it proved good over this time frame.

2) Slightly lesser price and definitely better FE of the Alto combined with cheaper maintenance. We can gauge the maintenance costs of the Spark only after the three year period is over.

3) Since the plan was to upgrade after a few years, Alto would definitely fetch a better resale price without any doubt.

4) A single factor that tilted the scale against the Spark in my biased mind - Korean product. That is what it is, despite the Chevy badge.

And despite the better GC of the Spark on paper, I doubt it is better than Alto in reality. Just look at the exhaust end can. To my eyes it's bottom portion appears lower than the lowest point of an Alto.

Last edited by Gansan : 14th June 2010 at 11:18.
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Old 14th June 2010, 11:17   #9
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Having owned an alto for 5years and a matiz, for 10 years, here are my views.

I agree with e_t here, the spark is a way more superior product compared to the alto. It has good space, better interiors, more comfort and better finish when compared to the alto. Maintaining it will be cheaper too thanks to the 3 year service pack which they offer. The only problem i have with it are the cartoonish looks.

The alto starts getting nervous at anything over 90, whereas i used to cruise comfortably at 130 in my matiz.

Also, driving the spark/matiz feels like driving a bigger car, whereas, in the alto, u feels like u are driving a paper toy .

P.s: the new bs4 alto is pathetic to say the least. They've reduced the interior quality,(yes, there was margin for that! Lol) put on cheap stickers, and worse of all, it now comes with front seats like the astar, but i think they are smaller, as i felt distinctly uncomfortable sitting in them. I'm sure taller drivers will not fit into them at all!
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Old 14th June 2010, 11:21   #10
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For me, Spark.
It looks like a better car, and is a better car too many Altos on our roads.

I do not agree to anyone who says Alto is easier to drive/handle. It's clutch is worse coupled with an engine which is on the verge of stalling on idle rpm with the slightest load applied - any newbie driver will stall it countless number of times. Turning on AC is like applying breaks.

Last edited by clevermax : 14th June 2010 at 11:30.
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Old 14th June 2010, 11:47   #11
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These figures are the best ones I have got in city. I haven't taken her on highway yet. I switch off at signals, have tires at 32psi & use Mobil1 fully synth oil. Even if you drive high revving all the way, it will still give you 16kmpl(no A/C). While referring to my FE figures, please do account for necessary error(+/- 2kmpl) also. I admit it is difficult to attain same FE in all scenarios, but, even if I consider the worst FE figure of Alto , Spark still loses out on this one.

On the Spark, if mileage with A/c is 'x', then mileage without A/C (x+y), where 'y' figure is not as significant as in Alto. Regarding safety & ride/comfort (ingress/egress), it is the buyer's choice.

I'm not talking about brake efficiency, I'm talking about the feedback the car gives you while you brake. My Palio's brakes were creepy to say the least & I often got nightmares. Alto is much better in that department, spark is a bit vague.

Regarding mods, I meant to say that it is quite tolerant of whatever you plan to throw at it (most jap cars are mod friendly) & performance parts are available easily(suspension,headers, CAI, FFE & what not). Go ask around for mods for an Aveo & you're greeted with a smirk & the statement 'Main laga to doonga, par yeh kaamayab nahi hai' ( I will install it if you like, but it is not successful/I will not take responsibility)

Resale value was not an option for me as I buy a new car with the intent of keeping it for 6-7 years.

My alto is BS3 version.

Last edited by JustCause : 14th June 2010 at 12:01.
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Old 14th June 2010, 13:37   #12
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Good FE, better handler, easy to maintain, great for someone who is learning to drive/buying her first car. My vote goes to the Alto
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Old 14th June 2010, 13:51   #13
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It is Spark all the way. Now I own a Spark so my reactions are first hand :

1. Better looking.
2. Decent fuel efficiency : I get 15-16kmpl in city with 100% AC and 18-19 on highway with 100% AC depending on speeds I choose to drive. Best FE I have got in city was 17kmpl last December when I chose not to turn the AC on (it was already cold outside). Best FE on highway has been Pune-Kolhapur trip , 20kmpl with 100% AC.
3. Modern Engine.
4. Interiors are leagues ahead than Alto.
5. Handling is much much better than Alto.
6. Safer drive brakes , tubeless tyres etc.

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Old 14th June 2010, 19:56   #14
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@ Harish, whats the budget? Or which variants are we comparing here??
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Old 14th June 2010, 23:17   #15
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Spark of course. Better car, bigger car, more comfortable, hassle free ownership with GM's 3 year service pack.
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