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Old 18th January 2021, 11:49   #1
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Default Why the heck will Maruti-Suzuki not fix its defective & dangerous steering behaviour?

Doesn't Maruti have ONE steering expert who can step in & fix this for all their cars? Why are they selling thousands of defective cars each month?

From our Official Review:

Quote:
Originally Posted by blackwasp View Post
The S-Presso comes with electric power steering. It is weird, poorly calibrated and feels more like a Mahindra-tuned steering than Maruti (surprising because Maruti steerings have usually been fuss-free to use). At parking speeds, the steering should have been lighter. Some people, including women, will feel that they would have to put in a little more effort than they wish. Itís a simple fix really. Maruti should have taken care of this. The EPS is a bit vague at some speeds, and a bit too sensitive at others. A regular Joe may not notice these inconsistencies with the steering, but a BHPian who drives it for 300 km most definitely will. The steering also lacks self-centering. On a long left-hand curve of the highway and another on the Sealink bridge, GTO left the steering in the middle (of the curve). Guess what? The S-Presso held its line and continued taking the turn perfectly (the steering didnít center back at all!!). In another instance, he took a right turn at a signal and after the turn, he left the steering. It stuck to that right turn position only. He had to manually straighten it. GTO's antique Mahindra Jeep steering needs the same straightening after a turn. Weíve hardly driven any modern car that behaves as strangely as this.
And now, a flabbergasted Ashis Mishra writes in seeking advice:

Quote:
I have purchased a Maruti Ignis Zeta AMT (Petrol). I found the steering to be sticky, having no automatic returning ability and it sticks on U-turns. They said being new, the EPS is sticky and will be ok after 500 - 750 km.

After that continuously, I sent it to the service centre and they say it should be okay after 3000 km. But the vehicle crossed 8700 km and still, the steering is sticky and on U-turns, it sticks at one point with a noise!

So recently, I sent an email to the Maruti Suzuki CEO and after that, I got a call from their RSM. Their local service centre's technical expert came for inspection and made a thorough driving test. He then said it has a defect which may be fatal as the steering is very stiff & sticky which isn't normal and needs some part replacements. They then picked up the car and checked the bushes, shock absorbers etc and informed me that the steering return ability issue could not be resolved for which they kept the car for one more day to inspect the entire steering column.

Later was told that the problem is resolved and they are arranging for delivery. When I received the car, I went for a testdrive with the technical expert. No effect was seen . It was with the same sticky, stiff steering with the same zero-return after turning.

The technical expert said he will change some parts and to wait for 7 to 8 days. But the very next day, the RSM called me and sent an email stating this is a feature of the car and the steering behaviour is better in upgraded vehicles .

Now, as this steering behaviour is quite abnormal, I request you to kindly advise me what action should I take so that Maruti will accept it as being faulty, and correct the same because my Ignis is under warranty.
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Old 18th January 2021, 11:56   #2
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Default Re: Why the heck will Maruti-Suzuki not fix its defective & dangerous steering behaviour?

Self centering is a convenience feature of the car. If the steering geometry of the car doesn't cause it to self return, the EPS motor can be programmed to automatically come back to the center.

It sucks that some cars don't have it by design, but I disagree strongly that it's dangerous behavior.

A genuinely 'sticky' steering that doesn't move freely may need further investigation though, but that's a different issue.
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Old 18th January 2021, 12:00   #3
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Default Re: Why the heck will Maruti-Suzuki not fix its defective & dangerous steering behaviour?

Marutis’s steerings have always lacked self centering abilities ever since they jumped on the Heartech platform. It affects ALL of their cars perhaps with the exception of Brezza. The only reason they get away with it is because they are Maruti.

This is simply a case of super cheapening out on the power steering motors. When Tata was working on bringing the power steering on Nano, initial prototypes lacked self centering. It was simply a cheaper system. But they worked on their PS motor and fixed it. The Nano Twist had a proper ‘normal’ power steering.

It is pathetic on Maruti’s part to continue with such a steering. This is similar to Hyundai’s brake issues. Everyone knows the problem is there, nobody is willing to officially acknowledge or fix it and people just keep buying and living with it in blind faith.

Last edited by BlackPearl : 19th January 2021 at 16:13. Reason: Minor typo. Thanks.
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Old 18th January 2021, 12:00   #4
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Default Re: Why the heck will Maruti-Suzuki not fix its defective & dangerous steering behaviour?

Quote:
Originally Posted by d3mon View Post
Self centering is a convenience feature of the car. If the steering geometry of the car doesn't cause it to self return, the EPS motor can be programmed to automatically come back to the center.

It sucks that some cars don't have it by design, but I disagree strongly that it's dangerous behavior.

A genuinely 'sticky' steering that doesn't move freely may need further investigation though, but that's a different issue.
I am no expert, but the self centering of steering is a design built in for rack and pinion steering assembly ( a very simple and clever solution) by off-set castor angle. All steering s should return to centre as soon as it is set free and the car is rolling forward.
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Old 18th January 2021, 12:04   #5
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Default Re: Why the heck will Maruti-Suzuki not fix its defective & dangerous steering behaviour?

It is the response from A.S.S representatives that made my case more irritable than the issue itself.

My sister's Estilo LXi has a weird EPS problem. when the car is left in open under the sun for a while, sometimes the EPS becomes inactive and becomes HPS(Hand powered steering - I am trademarking this word). But after a quick ignition toggle, it works fine.

When asked, the SA said that "this happens to many cars in the MS stable and cannot be guaranteed that the issue will be fixed even if the ECU is replaced. So, do not worry there are many cars on the road like this and no one had any major incident due to this!"

They are expecting me to drive in comfort that there are many driving with the same concern. What an attitude!
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Old 18th January 2021, 12:06   #6
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Default Re: Why the heck will Maruti-Suzuki not fix its defective & dangerous steering behaviour?

We have an Ignis with this behaviour of steering not returning 100% after U turn. Is it dangerous? No. We get used to it over time. Is it wrongly calibrated? Yes. Most users aren't driving as many variety of cars to know how it should ideally return to center. So we owners start living with it. In fact back in my mind the defect has got set as new normal. While typing it I'm just imagining how the steering is now! Totally forgot this aspect when I did U last U turn. Will update once I drive Ignis again. If there's a fix then MS should recall.
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Old 18th January 2021, 12:37   #7
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Default Re: Why the heck will Maruti-Suzuki not fix its defective & dangerous steering behaviour?

Guys, the fact is that drivers should not have to relearn anything when they drive a particular car. Self centering steering wheels are pretty much the standard behavior in all Indian cars. That's why it is dangerous. Because it does not behave as you would expect it to or are habituated to.

I also call it dangerous because of its behavior where it is vague at some speeds and too sensitive at some speeds.

In fact, I will go a step further and state that there is nothing about the steering wheel which I liked after my S-Presso drive.

Last edited by GTO : 19th January 2021 at 16:56.
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Old 18th January 2021, 12:44   #8
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Default Re: Why the heck will Maruti-Suzuki not fix its defective & dangerous steering behaviour?

I had the same issue on my S-Cross for few 1000's (or even 10000s) Km & I didn't give much thought to it. The last I remember checking around 40/50 Km & the steering self-centred on its own.

Just saying, I learned this is to be considered as an issue.

Last edited by Aditya : 18th January 2021 at 17:50. Reason: typo
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Old 18th January 2021, 12:52   #9
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Default Re: Why the heck will Maruti-Suzuki not fix its defective & dangerous steering behaviour?

I have not driven any EPS cars so my inputs may be way off. My understanding is that even with a EPS (Electric Power Steering), the steering wheel is still directly connected to the front rack and pinion mechanism which controls the wheel movement. What the Servo (BLDC) motor does is simply reduce the effort needed to rotate the wheel. The rotation speed, torque is set by the ECU based on the angle sensor, speed sensor input to it. Auto center function would need more sensors since the return would have to be automatic and needs additional sensors and calibration.

I don't think that MSIL cars are exactly fly by wire steering systems in which there is a total disconnect. So essentially its just a glorified old linkage system that's all.

Last edited by srini1785 : 18th January 2021 at 13:10.
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Old 18th January 2021, 13:07   #10
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Default Re: Why the heck will Maruti-Suzuki not fix its defective & dangerous steering behaviour?

I frequently face this issue with my wifey's A-Star and have to be conscious about the fact that whenever I am done making a 'U-turn', I need to intervene to bring the car back on track. However, I have not faced this issue with my Esteem (which has a HPS).
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Old 18th January 2021, 13:10   #11
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Default Re: Why the heck will Maruti-Suzuki not fix its defective & dangerous steering behaviour?

Quote:
Originally Posted by d3mon View Post
Self centering is a convenience feature of the car.
Sorry to disagree here. A return to centre or almost to centre is a must have feature. Any car should be having it.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Nav-i-gator View Post
I am no expert, but the self centering of steering is a design built in for rack and pinion steering assembly ( a very simple and clever solution) by off-set castor angle. All steering s should return to centre as soon as it is set free and the car is rolling forward.
Exactly. The caster angle offset in the suspension/wheels causes the steering or more appropriately the wheels to return to centre.

In cases where the suspension has gone wrong (worn out bushes or bend in arms) or wheels/ tyres have lost their geometry, the return to centre may not be absolute, but it will be near about.

The most common everyday example of caster offset is the steering wheels of the shopping mall trolley. Observe how it self centres when pushed.

Not having it in a car is blasphemy.

Last edited by fordday : 18th January 2021 at 13:35. Reason: typo
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Old 18th January 2021, 13:12   #12
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Default Re: Why the heck will Maruti-Suzuki not fix its defective & dangerous steering behaviour?

I have had the same experience with my 2020 S-Cross petrol that I wrote about here on the day I bought it.

https://www.team-bhp.com/forum/offic...ml#post4920696 (Maruti S-Cross 1.5L Petrol : Official Review)

I would like to share my 2 cents on this behaviour after 2.5 months of usage.


-- First Part (Normal behaviour) --

While this (steering not centering) is not engineered the right way, a new Maruti user may find it more of a problem. But once you drive the car for 7-14 days, you get accustomed to the car behaviour (atleast I did).

Secondly, it is only at very low, parking speeds where this behaviour is more apparent. At higher speeds, the steering returns back like normally expected.

-- Second Part (Real Issue) --
Sticky steering is known fault. Maruti usually replaces the steering column for affected cars even on a goodwill basis. Here the steering does not return back at any speed, on any occasion.

- I don't see Maruti resolving it anytime soon.
- Such flaws are rooted in Maruti being a cheap car manufacturer in general compared to others.
- I am part of S-Cross owners groups for the past few months and a Fiat owners group for many years. The average life of wear and tear items (suspension, brakes, clutch) is much less for Maruti cars as per posts by owners seeking advice on parts replacements.

For a person like me who lives in remote areas where petrol pumps look like these, Maruti knows they have a guaranteed customer.

Why the heck will Maruti-Suzuki not fix its defective & dangerous steering behaviour?-img20210104wa0011.jpg
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Old 18th January 2021, 13:24   #13
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Default Re: Why the heck will Maruti-Suzuki not fix its defective & dangerous steering behaviour?

This is not the case with my 2009 F10D Wagon R. It center aligns itself and have never faced any issues making a U Turn. And my recent test drive of S Cross with two full U turns didn't show any such issue. Seems to be an issue with particular models of the car.

BHPian's owning Baleno should comment here to identify whether the problem is due to the Heartect platform or for particular models where the EPS components are different.
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Old 18th January 2021, 13:46   #14
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Default Re: Why the heck will Maruti-Suzuki not fix its defective & dangerous steering behaviour?

Never faced this in my WagonR F10D nor in my Ertiga. Self return/Centering always happened soon after making that U-Turn and car gaining momentum.

However, I realised that this was not the case in the K-Series WagonR of my friend that I drove. We have a very tight basement parking with quite a few turns and this is exactly where the self centering helps a lot. When I found it missing in the K-Series, I was surprised. In both my cars, as soon as I enter the basement I need to make a left while the basement entry is curved to the right and when I move ahead, the steering centers itself and I follow the driveway path. In the K-Series, I had to use some manual strength to bring the steering to center position.

In fact, I also remember an instance where my Ertiga steering damper was torqued more than usual to check the rack noise (that was replaced under warranty after this) and when we went on a TD, the noise reduced but the self centering vanished!!

Last edited by paragsachania : 18th January 2021 at 13:48.
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Old 18th January 2021, 14:08   #15
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Default Re: Why the heck will Maruti-Suzuki not fix its defective & dangerous steering behaviour?

My experience with my 3rd generation Dzire is similar to what PaddleShifter has described above. At higher speeds, self-centering ability gets much better. It starts to kick-in at 25/30Km/hr speed and at above 40/50 Km/hr, it hardly needs any manual intervention. Unfortunately, we (at least most of us) take U-turns at lesser speeds which means we got to do the centering ourselves. Like many others here, I have got used to it but do consider it as a dangerous design fault.

However, I have not experienced any vague or sticky behavior. So, those issues might not be affecting every Maruti out there.

PS the speeds quoted above are not exact, I'll try to pay attention to it when I drive next time.

Last edited by Chetan_Rao : 20th January 2021 at 15:37. Reason: Typo: Speed units per hr, not per sec, at least we hope so :)
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