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Old 23rd February 2020, 10:28   #16
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Default re: Base variant + aftermarket accessories versus Top variant

I've always wanted to buy a Swift Lxi and soup it up, actually I almost did that but then ended up buying a Figo instead nine years back (and no regrets, the Figo was absolutely the better choice). But the idea I had was to get a red Swift Lxi, put fat tires and alloys on it, and some nice touches like a sound system and a grunty exhaust. Yeah, not cliche at all .

There are some cars which are kinda just symbols for doing this - the old Zen, Esteem, the old Swift, Lancer, and.. I can't think of a current car that would fill this kind of space. Maybe a K10.
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Old 23rd February 2020, 11:41   #17
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Default re: Base variant + aftermarket accessories versus Top variant

I am firm believer in getting all the basics in the car and all the bells and whistles that are subject to reducing reliability (involving electronics and embedded systems) and mostly cosmetic (DRLs, LED headlamps etc..) in nature are best avoided. As an example, the Seltos diesel base and top models are almost 7L apart only for additional features and bells and whistles with the basic important things largely remaining the same. Most things are usually present in a mid variant and frankly only the car maker and bragging rights benefit from buying a top model of the line up. This btw is purely IMHO.

Last edited by SPARKled : 23rd February 2020 at 11:50.
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Old 23rd February 2020, 17:36   #18
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Default re: Base variant + aftermarket accessories versus Top variant

I rather buy a top varient than to get a feeling of something missing. If my budget doesn't allow then I will keep my car stock.

My cars (dad's) are all top varients due to this reason. We do not install any aftermarket goodies. For few reasons-

Looks cheap (example: led reflector looks worse than a normal reflector)
avoiding warranty issues
no fear of fire or any short circuit.
when you have everything why spend more.

Sadly most of the features I don't even use in my car such as wireless charger, cruise control, automatic climate control.
The only reason we took the top model was due to 6 airbags and a sunroof in our Kia.

I feel that aftermarket job can never ever replace the factory work.

Internationally many car brands lets you customize your own car rather than wasting extra bucks.
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Old 23rd February 2020, 22:54   #19
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Default re: Base variant + aftermarket accessories versus Top variant

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr.Boss View Post
My pick would depend on few factors,
- Complexity of wiring or modifications involved
- Cost ratio (next grade vs added accessories)
- Warranty (though it is least priority)
All these cannot be managed with 50k or without voiding the warranty.
Absolutely! I second that. I checked with one of the trusted accessories shops here for Nexon. As per them, Android music system + Components can be managed with in 25K. Roof rails, fog lamps, reverse cam, vinyl flooring, door sill, remote central locking, shark fin antenna, parcel tray etc can be managed within 25K. He has given quote for the same.

Quote:
Originally Posted by auto_enthusiast View Post
It all depends upon the car and the price difference between the two variants which one would eventually upgrade to.
All in all it will depend upon case to case basis.
In case of Nexon, XZ is the model that has got all the features I'm looking for. Difference between XE and XZ is 2 Lakhs.

Quote:
Originally Posted by harry10 View Post
As I am researching for my next car I watch a lot of you tube videos and recently I have been watching many new cars getting modified. One trend which has caught my eye is many people buying SUV style vehicle in base model. Mainly Seltos, Brezza, creta etc and bringing it to Karolbagh. Spend anywhere between 50k-1lac and converting it to almost a top model feature wise. Now a Hypersonic android unit which I see people mostly go for, it costs around 15k and its really fluid and feature packed. Throw in decent components and couple of tweeters and you got a great system all around. Leather seats, alloys, roof wrap, roof rails, chrome kit, DRL, led lights etc are most common modifications and enhance the look of base variant a lot. Even Electric ORVM are available as accessory.
Same case with me! This particular idea of getting a base model and adding aftermarket accessories hit me after watching lot of youtube videos. Most of them are done from accessories shops in Karol Bagh.









Quote:
Originally Posted by sreejithkk View Post
It depends on the available aftermarket accessories for that specific model with decent fit and finish.
True! For me, decent fit and finish is mandatory. As per the available youtube videos, fit and finish looks fine. One of the main concern will be long term reliability. My 12 year old Wagon R got remote central locking and power windows by AutoCop. They still work without any issues. Not sure we can expect same level of reliability with modern day accessories.

Last edited by K_Drive : 23rd February 2020 at 22:55.
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Old 24th February 2020, 10:34   #20
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Default Re: Base variant + aftermarket accessories versus Top variant

I usually prefer buying only top-end variants, unless that variant is overpriced (in comparison to the others) or it doesn't make sense (got the Sunny mid-variant as it's a beater car).

Reasons:

1. There are many things that cannot be fitted in the after-market. Example = 6 airbags, ESP, steering-mounted controls, sunroof (I don't want my roof chopped off in the after-market) etc.

2. I can add the differential pricing to the car's financing itself.

3. Warranty. I LOVE warranties and usually take the max available option in the extended plan. Don't want an after-market install to void that.

4. Factory fit is factory fit. Period. I've burned my fingers way too many times with shoddy quality in the after-market (be it audio installs or engine swaps).

That said, if I was on a budget and someone gave me a choice between a fully-loaded car from a lower segment and a base trim of a higher segment, I would always go for the latter. Give me superior engineering / performance over the kit any which day.
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Old 24th February 2020, 10:50   #21
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Default Re: Base variant + aftermarket accessories versus Top variant

Quote:
Originally Posted by GTO View Post
I usually prefer buying only top-end variants, unless that variant is overpriced (in comparison to the others) or it doesn't make sense (got the Sunny mid-variant as it's a beater car).

Reasons:

1. There are many things that cannot be fitted in the after-market. Example = 6 airbags, ESP, steering-mounted controls, sunroof (I don't want my roof chopped off in the after-market) etc.
These days steering controls can be installed very easily. I have got it done on my 2015 Grand i10 and this is a very popular and easily available accessory for most of the popular cars in the market.
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Old 24th February 2020, 11:00   #22
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Default Re: Base variant + aftermarket accessories versus Top variant

I always go for the top specced model, even if that means having to forego a higher segment vehicle that I can only afford at a lower trim level.
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Old 24th February 2020, 11:51   #23
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Default Re: Base variant + aftermarket accessories versus Top variant

This weekend I met a fellow Nexon owner at service center who'd come for first servicing. He chose XT+ trim and added "Original" accessory Blaupunkt Screen through the dealer.

He showed me the irreparable damage to his glovebox & shabby quality of work by the installers. He is also experiencing some lag in touch-screen response on the system.

There is not recovery from the damage and shoddy workquality. He may be able to rectify performance issue by choosing another system (& spend more) at a later date.

I've also read the horror stories of issues in Sun-roof installation on other cars.

I mean would us really like our vehicle to be manhandelled by some one who doesn't give a dime? Will you be able to live with sub-par performance by installers and potential compatibility issues later? And I'm not even going to potential warranty issues.

I think it's a balance between, one's budget, risk appetite and rationlity ;-).... Head or Heart

For me, it's always better to choose the higher trim than choosing lower and adding accessories later, if one's budget allows.
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Old 24th February 2020, 11:57   #24
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Default Re: Base variant + aftermarket accessories versus Top variant

Quote:
Originally Posted by momsonlydriver View Post
I rather buy a top varient than to get a feeling of something missing. If my budget doesn't allow then I will keep my car stock..
This is something which we also believe in. Actually, experienced first hand. When buying our first car, Maruti Alto. The difference between LX and LXi (with Power steering) was 25k. Our driver back then suggested that a power steering in a small car doesn't make a huge difference (For his argument, he was also driving my uncle's TATA 407 ). We ended by buying LX. But, boy we do miss the power steering when driving within city these days. That to when all our other car have this feature.

After this, we either get the top variant of a lower segment or stretch our budget and get the top variant for the segment we are looking to purchase.
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Old 24th February 2020, 12:10   #25
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Default Re: Base variant + aftermarket accessories versus Top variant

If a base variant comes with 0 electronic gizmos, no music system, nothing for comfort, I'll still buy it.

Provided it has -
  1. ABS+EBD
  2. Airbags
  3. ISOFIX
  4. Rear wash+wipe
  5. Good quality headlamps
I'll install good quality projector HID fog lights, a fair music system, central locking system myself as a DIY afterwards.

Since these absolutely necessary items are considered as "features" in our market & available generally only in the top 2 trims - I would have to buy the top trims. Even when I don't really care about most of the creature comforts.
Thankfully, ABS+EBD and airbags are now becoming standardized across trims. Still - I can't drive a (non sedan) car that doesn't have a rear wash-wipe.

Last edited by Reinhard : 24th February 2020 at 12:12.
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Old 24th February 2020, 12:41   #26
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Default Re: Base variant + aftermarket accessories versus Top variant

If most of what you want is available in lower models (including accessories that can be added aftermarket) it makes financial sense to go for it. What most of us do not take into account is that though the difference between the base and the top end models may be more or less equivalent to the accessories, the Insurance and road tax add a substantial cost making after market accessories a lucrative option.

For example if the difference is Rs.50,000/ then
. the road tax at 10% is Rs.5,000/
. Insurance at 3% is Rs.1,500/
Total extra outgo is Rs.6,500/

In case of higher difference; as is the case in luxury cars; which may be a couple of lakhs, the extra outgo to the exchequer is even higher. So is the case where the road tax is much more than 10% taken here.

At lower segments there are a few options that cannot be added (at a reasonable cost) - Tachometer, Adjustable seats, Climate Control AC and the difference is barely enough to cover the extra cost. So it makes sense to get the higher variant.
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Old 24th February 2020, 13:23   #27
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Default Re: Base variant + aftermarket accessories versus Top variant

Well, I am probably exactly the kind of guy you mentioned in your post.

I was looking for a car that could replace my 10-year-old Ritz, and I did not have a set model or make in mind. I really wanted to honor the Indian manufactures who had been making some really good cars and hence limited my choices to Mahindra and Tata. I tested out the XUV 500, 300, Marazzo, Nexon, and Hexa. During this car buying journey discovered my love for automatics, and hence that narrowed the choice further. The XUV 500 Auto was almost 19 Lakhs and did not even have alloy wheels. The Marazzo did not have an Auto, and Hexa was also 20 Lakhs. The XUV 300 Auto diesel base variant was available for 12 Lakhs on the road in Hyderabad.

I was missing a lot of the top-end features such as sunroof, android auto, additional airbags, and alloy wheels. However, I realized I don't need most of the shiny stuff. Just needed better seat covers and fog lamps, so got them installed. What I do miss are rear wiper and android auto, but it did not seem worth the extra 3 lakhs that was being charged for the top-end variant. I knew that the car was structurally a beast, and physical safety was ensured because of that and the airbags. The automatic gave me the convenience I was looking for the total deal worked on as good value for money. The SA was confused because he felt I have the budget to buy a larger car, so why not buy the top end of this one. It's just that for me, the features being offered did not equate to the value being delivered. Hence, just took the lowest automatic variant and boosted it. I found the whole process fascinating because I never looked at myself as a value for money person. However, I realized through the process that I don't subscribe to the notion of paying extra now so that you don't regret later. I do miss Android Auto sometimes, but I remember the 3 Lakhs and save and smile.
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Old 24th February 2020, 13:36   #28
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Default Re: Base variant + aftermarket accessories versus Top variant

Yes and No! Depends on the Product Features you are counting on.

Top variant required for -
More than 2 Airbags
Cruise Control
ACC (Automatic Climate Control)
Sunroof
Auto headlamps/wipers
'X' inch touchscreen with Nav
Keyless entry and go
Leather steering/handbrakes/seats
Cooled Glovebox
Fog Lamps


And as we know, not too many of aforementioned can be retrofitted on lesser variants.

Features which can be added on as accessories are
Light upgrades
ICE Upgrade
Leather seats
Horn
Tyre/Rims etc

Personally, I have a clear choice! Get as much you can get from Factory for obvious reasons. So Top variant is a no brainer for me. Even if I can get some features fitted aftermarket, I am firm believer of "factory fitted" and dont think parts are refitted as nicely as in a new car after say a dashboard dismantling exercise for ICE upgrade. Call me old school


I also believe that Car companies have sensed this well, and Top ends are very well "loaded" now a days with some features really being niche and almost impossible to be fitted aftermarket.
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Old 24th February 2020, 13:41   #29
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Default Re: Base variant + aftermarket accessories versus Top variant

I have a rule of almost never buying the top variant of the car simply because of the phenomenal price difference between them, i just cannot justify spending a Kwid or Wagon R money for just a few more features which is otherwise an identical car.

I own SV variant in Honda City which was middle of the line when i bought it and SX variant in Creta which is the same, both times the difference between them and the top variant was around 3 Lakhs and they had Leather Seats, Start Stop/Keyless entry system, infotainment with bigger screens/GPS, better alloys and that is it.

There are many more miscellaneous features but both my car have factory fitted audio systems, automatic climate control (which by the way i only like because it comes with better knobs and switches and a display, otherwise i always manually set the AC unit), electronically adjustable mirrors (Creta is electronically foldable too), steering mounted audio controls and believe me i don't like any compromises in any aspects of life, cars being the least of them, i greatly appreciate value for money too so i want to maintain the best balance of both.

When we bought the Cruze , the top variant had fantastic leather seats (Even Creta's top variant has mediocre leatherrite seats), leather steering, Start-Stop/keyless entry, cruise control, sun roof for just around a lakh more than the base variant, we went for the top variant in that case. Had it been a 2 lakhs or more of a difference, i would have happily let go off those features.
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Old 24th February 2020, 16:51   #30
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Default Re: Base variant + aftermarket accessories versus Top variant

The decision has been made more complex by the higher number of variants offered by the new companies leading to a very wide price range for every products. Eg: Kia Seltos, wherein it starts for 11 lac and goes up to 22 lac on road. So it is no more an easy task to decide upon the variant as we tend to get into lot of cross segment (price/body style) shopping.

The best case would be a scenario in which manufacturers give us "a-la-carte" option and we customize it. And since it would be from factory, they can keep the price & quality on check. The problem with company fixed variant is that top end may have lot of features I don't need. But in-order to get a few features i need, I will have to pay for the features I don't require (eg, I am not a fan of automatic rain sensing wiper and would prefer not to spend for it.)

See how perception varies.
https://www.team-bhp.com/forum/india...ures-cars.html (The most useless features in cars)

Hope we get such customization options soon.

Regarding the warranty, those having upgrade itch, will keep on upgrading whichever variant they get. People are are even customizing and upgrading Lamborghinis and other super cars. Almost all the GTI sold in Kerala are code6 tuned with lot other modifications.

Last edited by petrol_power : 24th February 2020 at 16:56.
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