I would like to open this thread by owing all senior BHPians my sincere gratitude. I extensively researched on this platform and studied the feedbacks by my fellow BHPians before heading out to buy my first car, an M&M XUV 300 W(8) Petrol variant.
Here's what I experienced after driving/learning it for 6 months across various conditions.
On road price : 12.87 lakhs
Odometer reading : 4900+ Kms
Highest range driven : 400+ Kms
Highest speed : 140 Kmph Straight from the horse's mouth
Had my first long trip done and there was no looking back. Realized that the ABS, Cruise Control and other engine features were top notch. The gear selection is great. Most importantly, the cabin is sound proof. Additionally, my Car's sweet spot turned out to be Revs between 1500 - 2000 and 60-80KMPH. Besides, I drove her continuously for nearly 6 hours in mixed road conditions covering 400+ KMS, AFE observed was 22 KMPL which beats the ARAI of 17KMPL. City driving conditions are little inefficient, not because of the car, but myself as I am really slow and a careful driver. AFE observed in city driving is between 12-15 KMPL. This vehicle reinforces confidence for amateurs like me. Background :
Even though I obtained my driving license as early as 2014, I rarely drove. I had a phobia of not driving anybody else's car thinking that I would bump it somewhere on the road. To be honest, I live in Howrah, a densely packed and highly congested area where GT road is shared amongst Toto's, Rickshaws, Cycles, Motorbikes, Trucks, Buses and pretty much every vehicle that can get on the road. Moreover, this is a notorious area, alongside Kolkata where its effortless to get into an incident. This kept me demotivated. All the while I was in Kerala, working for an IT MNC for 4 years, I did some driving there thanks to the empty roads and highways. I had some experience in driving a Swift and a WagonR but that was it, a long gap of 7 years. The build up before purchase :
After getting a Job at Amazon sometime in June 2021, I decided to buy a Royal Enfield initially that's when my elder brother convinced me to get a 4 wheeler instead and prepare for greater requirements as I am already 31.
This is when all the research began. I initially shortlisted Thar, Brezza, Creta, Sonnet, Nexon, Altroz and Venue but only followed up with Sonnet. After some discussions with the Dealer, a lack of enthusiasm gripped me.
That's when I discovered XUV 300 and started investigating. After a week's research and some skepticism, all the aforementioned options just disappeared. I came out to value the safety ratings, driving experience, engine configurations and comfort over all the flashy, modern, feature-full alternatives being provided by the competitors. I was comfortable with the backdated interior/infotainment system and lack of adequate boot-space. The ground clearance was still an issue but I convinced myself not to abuse the car and drive as sincerely as I can. Nonetheless, the superficial things lacking didn't demotivate me and I valued the car's capability over everything else. Despite somewhat making up my mind, there was a voice within me saying : "Dude, get the Thar, Life's short, go for it don't think so much."
. I discussed my inner thoughts but one dialogue from my elder brother shook me off my day-dreaming. Test Drive
M&M folks were located nearby, I gave them a call and went for a test drive; this confirmed all that I expected. I sat in the driver's seat and realized how comfortable it is and the glaring rage of red was blinding everything else on the road. Pretty satisfied, I came back and got the quotation from the dealer. He was charging me nearly 50K for the insurance, this is where I could have saved some 20-30k had I purchased a plan outside the dealership. It was a lesson learned, I made mistakes and acknowledged it. I decided to opt for 100% loan considering the need for retaining cash for my immediate future needs. The calculation for 7 years loan tenure put a price tag of approx. 16.5L, I realized that I was paying nearly 3.5L as interest for 7 years, but I was ok as I needed more take home from salary and kept the option of foreclosure on the table. Plot Twist
Having made up my mind, I was coming out of the showroom that's when a Convertible Red Thar caught my attention which was displayed on the way. I jumped inside and asked the Sales Agent to take her out for a test drive.
I experienced body-roll and the power of the vehicle, the glancing of fellow motorists and all that aura surrounding this beast. Back at the dealership, I called up my Consultant and asked her to know if they had Thar in the stock, that's when the waiting period of 7-8 months, maintenance, and operational costs gave me a reality check. Pretty disappointed, I decided to pursue the XUV and said to myself "Let's have a family car, the Thar can wait for some other time." Nonetheless, this disappointment was short-lived and I was convinced that XUV was the best decision that I could take considering my practical needs. Delivery & Initial Ownership
As promised, the SC delivered my car within 14 days. All new, no defects. I did the PDI and finished all the paperwork to take possession.
Day 1, I reluctantly took her out at dawn, had a driver hired for assistance as I was driving after a long gap and my confidence levels were record low. My mom and I were thinking of keeping a driver for sometime till I was set, but the hourly rates and first day experience motivated me to drive my own beast all by myself.
Day 4. I realized that the car was too big for me to control and I had some issues in sensing the gap that needs to be maintained on the Left. Confidence was sinking as I started experiencing the nitty-gritty of maneuverability in pathetic road conditions first hand. Nonetheless, I carried on driving her slowly and carefully.
Things settled down after 10-12 days when I gathered confidence of taking the National Highways. My 6 months weren't completely incident free, my beast received scratches and dents mostly due to carelessness of fellow motorists while I got myself a scratch due to gentle rubbing while parking. Such incidents I think pushes one towards defensive driving, and I think that's good as it can really reduce one's chances of accidents.
For those who are planning to go for XUV 300, go for it. It's a top of the class car and best in the segment unless you're not a fan of superficial things like interiors, bootspace, infotainment system and all.
Today, I did DIY painting and touched up the areas. The results are good;
but please don't try this at home. Color matching is a painful activity and has it's consequences.