Originally Posted by salbin
IMHO, a highway drive at 70+kmph will definitely give you a better FE figure.
White-rabbit was complaining about the same issue, but I came to know from him that he got ~17-18kmpl when he himself conducted FE test in highway at 70+ speed.
I am having mixed opinion on the fuel efficiency of our petrol Beat having run 3000+ kms. Why I am much concerned on the FE of the Beat is that, FE was one major reason we went for the Beat
as a second car to the family dreaming about fuel efficient city drives in the 'era of ever-increasing petrol prices'.
The Beat has been promoted as a highly fuel efficient vehicle by Chevrolet/dealers and they have got the ARAI certification of 18.6 kmpl as claim. We had also been given by the dealer reference of existing customers who claimed a minimum of 14-15 kmpl in city drives. One other customer we met on the road alone was not happy on the drinking habit of the beat and he quoted a 12 kmpl. The dealers also quoted a 15 kmpl in the city for the Beat and 18 on the highway.
Dealers and Chevrolet, please do not think that I am here for bashing you, but I wanted to get public clarification on the car and also wanted to share my short review.
For us, we are getting a paltry 10-11 kmpl in the city with A/C switched on, which I believe even sedans like the Honda City would give along with lot of power under the foot. Switching off the A/C would take the FE to 12-13 kmpl. On the highway run, we are consistently getting 14-15 kmpl with the conditioner on and 17 kmpl with A/C off. I wanted to clarify if is this all we get under normal usage?
Also, does the A/C drink too much of fuel (3 kmpl difference on the highway)? In addition, comparing to a i10, Baleno and Swift, I have not felt the A/C to be a 'chiller' as some of you have reported. Is it me alone?
I have complained to the service centre about low FE and the adviser has asked me to wait till 6000-7000 kms and a couple of services. I do not get the point in waiting for this much to get the real picture in terms of FE. If this is true, why is it so, especially for the Beat?
Since I wanted to care for the new car, I drive calm, sedate, and up-shifting early (starting with 2000 rpm if possible), which I do not think is very practical on the Beat as the low-end torque is pretty bad. I have felt that the low-end torque affects drivability if we are not really careful. Overtaking trucks and trailers is a pain and a bit dangerous even if we downshift, immediate power surge is unavailable. Sometimes I tend to curse our buy as I wonder where the 80 horses disappeared. Adding to this, what perplexes me is that the low FE has not even turned out to better power in general. Yet again, I wanted to know if it is my car alone or can it be improved?
Ours is a post Feb '11 model, with me having no idea on the current ECU settings it have.
The low-end torque might not be much an issue for the first time car owner but me having driven an 800cc Matiz and a 1600cc Baleno both for close to 5 years separately, think the Beat's 1200cc is marginally better than the Matiz in terms of high speed yet much worse in terms of FE and drivability in city. My in-law's IRDE i10, which was the inspiration for us to go for a fuel efficient small city car, is delivering better pick-up, drivability and very good FE of approx 16-17 kmpl in city and 20-21 kmpl on the highway with the A/C on all the time.
In the same breath, I should also comment on a particular incident which I ventured into - a highly sedate fuel efficient drive which is very impractical in day-to-day life. One sunday afternoon, after filling petrol for 300/- from an identified pump as the best around, switching off all comforts, I hit the highway with the lightest of foot I ever can and it took me close to 110 kms. The result of staying in the lowest of RPMs possible, constant speeds of 50 - 60 kmph, freewheeling(I know it is highly not recommended for the brakes and stopping abilities of the car) on declines and on anticipated braking opportunities : approx 25 kmpl FE, a splitting headache for my co-passenger and a stiff foot for me(I felt the incline of the accelerator pedal a bit steep for my foot). But this incident does not make me a bit happy as this is not at all how you drive in reality.
It is also not good to leave out the unique positives of the Beat. Some few points are as below. Maybe some other time I will try writing a detailed review with more positives and negatives. First and foremost, is the futuristic design, especially the front and side profiles. Even the latest EON has copied and made better the side profile of the Beat. Next is the interior layout along with the blue lighting effects which I think can easily be incorporated into many high end cars leading to awe inspiring interiors all together, but unfortunately, they are not making use of. Another is the low NVH at near idle speeds is a never before experience. I have not seen a lighter clutch in another vehicle. Also, the smoothness of the drive on good highways at moderate speeds(till 100 kmph) feels like it is a good cruiser(don't torch me for this, as I feel we do not have the roads and laws for much high speed driving), especially on the comfortable front seats. In its segment, the Beat should be a satisfying car for the front co-passenger, with ample leg space, good seat and head support, a smooth ride up front, classy interior lights to his/her right, than the driver, getting frustrated on the lack of pick-up and his pocket emptying fast due to frequent visits to the petrol bunk
. Remembering somebody pointing out the Beat as "the best car for your girl friend", but forgetting who.
P.S. Due to the above positives of the Beat, I feel like taking her out quite often, albeit in a relaxed manner. But at the end of the day, the practicality of the Beat is making me constantly thinking of skipping my 'Heart-Beat'. There is no smilie for depressed! Yes, that is exactly what it makes me feel more often than pride and happiness.
P.S.S. I calculate FE not based on top-up but on consumption till reserve, taking a consecutive average for more than one filling to reduce error. I do keep a regular check on the tire pressure too.