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Old 1st June 2020, 16:57   #1
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Default Tata Hexa XMA Ownership Review

I purchased a Tata Hexa XMA vehicle in the beginning of March. Thought of sharing my initial ownership experience as I didn’t find any ownership thread specifically for XMA.

The need for 7 seater!

Around beginning of 2019 is when I started looking for a good 7 seater family car for catering to occasions when the entire family travels together. It so happened on some occasions that we ended up driving two cars or renting the SUVs from the self drive portals. Infact, for sometime, I was determined to use the self drive option for these occasional drives to keep the cost of ownership low. I had some bad experience with respect to car cleanliness and availability on some occasions and then re-started the process of car search.

For me the main criteria was the vehicle had to be a 7 seater and automatic. I was ok with Petrol and Diesel both as my running will be very low with this car.

I considered the below cars and would like to share a brief summary of what I observed. These are purely my own personal views.

I started my search with Ertiga.

Now one of my colleague was owning this car and I had driven this extensively. The car’s seating is great, decent space and boot, low cost of ownership, light steering, very good headlights and was very much within my budget. The best part of this car was ease of getting in and out for my parents. The last row had less headroom but perfectly ok for people who are of around 5 feet height.

So why I didn’t go for it? I don’t know exact words but to me it didn't inspire confidence to me, specially when I looked in the engine bay. The GNCAP results gave a 3star so it was ok but somehow I wasn’t comfortable. There were too much use of plastic in engine bay, the front grill was bending on thump pressure etc.

Did check out the XL6 and between these would have picked up the XL6 edition however for reasons stated above was not able to close on this. Now, this is my personal views and can be wrong.

Now we own other Maruti cars in the family including a 2011 Dzire and 2011 WagonR - and both are running great. So very much believer in the reliability factor of Maruti cars. But this edition of Ertiga didn’t have what I was looking for.

Next – Mahindra Stable

Went to Mahindra showroom on Hosur road and to test drive Marazzo and XUV 500. While the former didn’t have an AT I liked the light steering, good suspension, and space on offer. The gear throw was long, clutch super long. Since I was looking for an automatic had to take this off the list. Otherwise this was making a good option.

XUV 500 was very easy to drive as well. Was looking at W7 Auto. This car had more features than many other cars in similar price range. Easy to get in and out. Light steering. Huge legroom in 1st and 2nd row of seats. What didn’t work out for me was the third row. I am 5 ft 8 inch and I found it tough to sit there. No space for luggage was another downer.

Next, Tata Hexa

Apart from test drive we had driven the manual edition from rental companies in recent past and a colleague’s AT on a very long drive in 2018. Good suspension, space, usable third row and some amount of luggage space (slightly more than Marazzo). Heavy steering, high seat base meant one had to climb to get in were the two issues that bothered me. Big turning radius was also a pain to deal with when driving in city conditions.

Meanwhile a friend of mine suggested if I am looking at 7 seater I should also check out the Innova.

Went to the showroom on Outer ring road, Bangalore to take a test drive. Liked the G AT edition. Best legroom and space utilization among all 7 seaters south of 25 lakhs, easier to get in compared to Hexa, good luggage space, knee airbag were the positives. Steering was heavy, I will say similar to Hexa but Hexa used to feel better when one picks up speed. Ride quality was better in Hexa but Innova and XUV are also not lagging behind much. I am not an audiophile so didn’t test the music system much but among cars I saw Hexa had a better one.

Innova with offer was coming within 21 Lakhs. Hexa also had good offers upto 2 Lakhs off in 2019.

Somehow time went by with me not being able to decide mostly due to the fact that the purchase price was crossing my initial budget, and by then it was last week of January 2020. Innova BS4 stock was over and BS6 was above my budget. Casually called up KHT and Prerana Motors, the Tata dealers in Bangalore whom I had inquired with earlier, both to check if they had any 2019 Hexa in store. Both updated in negative but also added that they had 2020 models with decent offers. KHT had a White XMA while Prerana had a Tungsten Silver XMA and a White XTA. XTA was above my initial budget and if someone was stretching to 21-22 Lakh, Innova at just a Lakh more was making more sense. Now one thing I would like to add is that - if Marazzo had an auto option I would have gone for it. In that range this car has a lot to offer. Since auto box was a primary requirement for me, I decided to proceed with Hexa XMA.
I didn't test drive BRV as I had found the driving seat position to be too low. Did check this in a colleague's car.

Since I went for Hexa XMA, wanted to share the features I found one looses in Hexa XMA as compared to XTA:
  • 6 airbags in XTA vs 2 airbags in XMA
  • 10 speaker sound system (5 speakers, 4 tweeters and one woofer) vs 8 speaker system in XMA (4 speakers and 4 tweeters)
  • Automatic Climate Control is not present in XMA
  • Leather seats
  • Middle row charging point and 12 volt charger
  • Puddle lamps
  • Mood lighting
  • Dual exhaust
  • Boot lamp
  • Sunglass holder
  • Rear parking camera integrated in center console
  • Alloy wheels. Also XMA gets 16 inch wheels vs 17 inch in XTA
For me other than #1 rest was ok to live with. I was anyways planning to go for Alloys and Rear Camera available as official accessory from Tata.

So to summarize, what did I like in Hexa? (XMA edition)
  • Space in all rows. Sliding middle row. Decent luggage space.
  • Good engine gearbox combo, specially the automatic editions. Good driveability.
  • Strong build. No crash rating available though there are enough videos on youtube which shows that the car did fare well in real world crashes.
  • Good ride quality. [Off topic: I found ride quality in Duster to be better than Hexa]
  • Very stable on high speeds. Gives you a lot of confidence while driving. Amazing straight line stability. Tyre width is same in XMA and XTA.
  • Decent and practical equipment list - Remote lights, cooled glovebox, Rear Wiper and Wash, Rear Defogger, Android Auto support in ICE, Sport Mode in Transmission.

What I disliked or am worried about?
  • Heavy steering.
  • Difficult for elderly to get into. The side foot steps reduced the pain here to some extent.
  • Some of the engine issues faced by people in the forum and elsewhere. Took extended warranty as an insurance here.
  • Body roll, slightly more than what you get in XUV or Innova
  • A lot of features which were deleted but were still mentioned in the brochure - Puddle lamps, Boot Lamp, 12 V Charger in second row, White Mood Lights, Sunglass holder.

Spoke to family on color options and went for the Tungsten silver. Spoke to the sales advisor Mr Abhishek BS from Prerana Motors and he started working on it immediately. One word of appreciation for Prerana Motors and my sales advisor here is that they were not at all pushy. Very open with what can be done and what not and handled all my queries very well. All paperwork was done with only one visit to their office. Matched insurance quote from outside and also gave some good freebies in accessories.

Car was available in last week of Feb but we could take delivery on 1st March due to my other pre-occupancies. I am not a fan of these elaborate delivery experiences but my kid liked it and so I was fine with it. I carried some boxes of sweets for the sales advisor and other staff. Delivery ceremony had cake cutting, large symbolic key handover etc. I was also given a fuel coupon for 10 litres, both the keys and manuals, receipts in a nice pouch and a packet of good chocolates. The car had all accessories fitted as discussed and closed upon earlier.

I had opted for the following:
  • OEM Side foot step. This was essential to make getting in and out a bit easier.
  • Hexa branded OEM leatherite seat covers. XMA comes with Fabric covers by default.
  • Rear camera with separate display on dashboard. The integrated ones on XMA has sensor display integrated in the centre console.
  • Tata OEM Allow Wheels. XMA comes with steel wheels by default.
  • OEM Car cover.

The car had 66 kms on the odometer when it was handed over.

Overall a happy delivery experience. The sales advisor also shared later in the day a video of me driving out of the showroom which he captured in his mobile without me knowing it. It was a pleasant surprise.
With this let me present to all BHPians out there -
Hexatron!
Tata Hexa XMA Ownership Review-20200301_113652.jpg

Last edited by busydrive : 23rd June 2020 at 15:41.
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Old 1st June 2020, 17:12   #2
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Default re: Tata Hexa XMA Ownership Review

Congratulations sir on your new acquisition. A very well written and detailed review. The Hexa is truly a very capable car and really puts a wide grin across my face whenever I see it on the road. With Tata's commendable Sales and Services improvement, I would, without any second thoughts put my money on it. Once Again, heartiest congratulations from my side and may you enjoy many happy miles with this car.
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Old 23rd June 2020, 12:12   #3
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Initial driving impression:

I have not been able to take the car out much due to the ongoing lockdown and hence the below impressions are from the limited driving experience I had with this car.
I will not repeat what is mention in the official review. I have shared below my impressions after driving the car for this short duration and the differences I found in XMA model.

Steering, seating position, ergonomics:
This is a car where one has to climb into. Having the side foot steps has made it little easier. One gets a very good view of the road ahead from the driving seat. Bonnet can be seen at the highest point of seat adjustment. However since the bonnet is not flat and tapers down the view is restricted at the corners. The view is not similar to what Harrier has in comparison where one can see the entire bonnet. One has to be careful while taking close quarter turns specially in dense traffic like what we used to see in Bangalore outer ring road!
The steering is heavy at parking speed. However it gets better with speed. The vehicle is responsive and gives you good confidence while doing speeds.
Seating position is good. I had to bring up the seat height adjust to a slightly higher level in order to get better visibility. For taller persons (I am 5 feet 8 inch tall for example) view will be even better without seat height adjust.
The steering in XMA comes without any leather cover like XTA. For now I have put a basic cover as I was finding it uncomfortable with the stock form. Have to change this.
The XMA misses out on front and rear fog lamps and so while the switch is exactly like XTA these two functions are basically dummy on the control switch.
XMA has rear wash and wipe. Front wipers have a good spread. Need to see how it works out in Bangalore rains.
There are not too many storage spaces around driving seat. I end up using the space in front right door pocket. Have bought a holder which I have fitted between the front seat and transmission console to keep the mobile. The only cup holder available near transmission console is taken up by the additional charging socket.

The additional charging socket and utility holder.
Tata Hexa XMA Ownership Review-20200621_091625.jpg

Features:
While XMA misses out on quite a lot of equipment and feature it does have the essential ones. While the sound quality is good, XTA's music system is in a different league. The auto climate control is also missing in XMA but that was not a problem for me as I am used to using manual AC since last 24 years!
XMA does have some of the useful features like cooled glovebox, remote headlight operation through remote, individual map lights for driver and co-passenger, second row lighting, touch screen infotainment system. The infotainment system has Android Auto available which is very useful. I also downloaded Tata provided Navi Maps and have tested mirroring the phone with central console.
One more useful feature I found was sun visor extender. XMA also has second row pull up mesh curtain which is very effective in heavy sunlight.

All dummy placeholders in middle row. The glassholder is the only one that works. But its placed in a place where it will probably, never be used.
Tata Hexa XMA Ownership Review-20200621_091644.jpg

Sunvisor extender
Tata Hexa XMA Ownership Review-20200621_091716.jpg

Driveability:
Driveability is one of the key positives of Hexa. On open roads this engine shows its proper mettle. However since I am in initial run-in period I didn't dare throttling the rpm much. The sport mode is addictive though. The display on the driver instrument console changes to a red color when sport mode is activated. In sport mode if you floor the accelerator you do get a huge push back to your seat! The feeling was awesome!
The much talked about suspension does its job nicely. Initial days there was some feeling of bumpiness. It has got better with time. I did check the tyre pressure on the say of delivery and it was not overinflated! A bit surprised here as I am used to overinflated tyres whenever any of our car is coming back from a periodic service. The stock tyres were Bridgestone and I don't intend to change them soon. They do their job well on well tarred roads. The grip is very good and you will not realize you are doing triple digit speeds. The weight of the car and tyre grip does match well and holds the car very stable in straight line even in high speeds.
XMA 2020 doesn't have the engine cover which was there in 2019 models. Don't know if that is the reason, the engine sound is pretty loud. Even when idling one can hear the clatter from inside the cabin.
Brakes were making a strange noise during the initial few days. Now it has got better. Bite is sharp.
While the car is good to drive on open roads, there are some minor issues which one needs to be aware of. It has a big turning radius and one needs to plan properly. This along with a heavy steering at parking speed makes u-turns difficult.
The car also has decent body roll on uneven surfaces. You have to slow down if you want your passengers to have a comfortable ride on uneven surfaces.
The car is wide. And with the side steps added it has become real wide! Difficult to drive in narrow lanes.

2nd and 3rd row seating and space:
Space in first two rows is good. Last row also works out well when the middle row is pushed a little ahead. Innova is still better in this aspect though. Luggage space is okayish for a weekend trip, lesser than what is available in Innova. Middle row is good for three but XUV has better space utilization in middle row due to flat floor. Hexa has a big transmission hump which impacts space available for the middle passenger.
Also, as pointed out in the official review wanted to mention that even though this car is very wide, front passenger footwell is limited due to the transmission channel design. It eats up some space where the front passenger will rest his/her right feet.


Feature Deletions in 2020 vs 2019 models
Some feature deletions has happened in 2020 Hexa XMA:
Middle row 12 volt charger is absent in 2020 models.
Also missing is last row boot light.
Dual exhaust is not available in 2020 Hexa XMA.
Engine cover is not there in 2020 models as well.
Also absent is the Passenger airbag de-activation switch.

Rear View. Note the black rear epilogue and loading area. These are chrome in XTA.
Tata Hexa XMA Ownership Review-20200621_091919.jpg

View from driving seat. You don't see the bonnet unless you stretch your neck!
Tata Hexa XMA Ownership Review-20200520_133332.jpg

Side view. On paper longer than Innova but passenger space is more in Innova.
Tata Hexa XMA Ownership Review-20200621_091932.jpg

Single exhaust in 2020 XMA
Tata Hexa XMA Ownership Review-20200621_091733.jpg

The false rear left exhaust housing. Looks really ugly. In 2019 edition atleast the exhaust used to end behind the housing. Now it just ends abruptly.
Tata Hexa XMA Ownership Review-20200621_091739.jpg

Left exhaust housing:
Tata Hexa XMA Ownership Review-20200621_091743.jpg

Accessories Added

Hexa branded seat covers. Got this from the dealer:
Tata Hexa XMA Ownership Review-20200314_153850.jpg
Rear seat covers. Also visible is rear legroom.
Tata Hexa XMA Ownership Review-20200314_153900.jpg

OEM Accessory - Alloy and Side Step
Tata Hexa XMA Ownership Review-20200301_183637.jpg

Front View, with the wipers pulled up:
Tata Hexa XMA Ownership Review-20200621_091902.jpg

I also got some additional accessories and treatment done outside / DIY.

Magnetic mobile holder. Bought from Amazon.
Tata Hexa XMA Ownership Review-20200621_091829.jpg

Steering cover. This is a temporary one as I was totally uncomfortable with the original one in XMA which is not covered in leather unlike XTA. Have to replace this.
Also note the rear camera display at the far end of the dashboard. This camera is an OEM accessory.
Tata Hexa XMA Ownership Review-20200621_091844.jpg

PPF treatment: The week after delivery I took it to my trusted 3M HSR for underbody anti-rust coating and attaching PPF in scratch prone areas such as area near door sill guard, area below door handles. Total damage around 11K.

Fog Lamps. XMA doesn’t come with Fog lamps. Dealer offered to fit a fog lamp which was available as an approved accessory. However I didn't opt for it as I was not comfortable with the amount of light it was throwing. They didn't agree to fix the OEM ones which comes in XTA. So a dummy one is added for now. Will change it to Projector Fog Lamp from outside. Need to work out the warranty part.
Tata Hexa XMA Ownership Review-20200525_093913.jpg

Bought Akaso V1 Dashcam from Amazon. Decent Dashcam. Night time photos are also legible.

This, in summary, is my story of how I went on to buy a Hexa. Once I take this out on a long drive will get to know it better. If someone is planning for Hexa and has the budget XTA makes a lot of sense. As this is a vehicle which will be occasionally used wanted to keep the cost low.

Will keep the thread updated. Please ask if you have any questions.

Last edited by busydrive : 23rd June 2020 at 15:47.
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Old 23rd June 2020, 13:21   #4
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1st Service
Booked an appointment on the Tata Motors Service App for 1st service just after lockdown. Reached the place on time. The security had a list of people who had taken appointment on that day and yes my name wasn't there on the list!
After some requests they allowed to take my vehicle in as it was just 1st service and it had some inspections and no changes to any fluid etc.
Was promised a delivery time after 3 hours and it was met. I got it on time. Car was cleaned properly.
I had requested for Engine Cover to be fitted but the SA updated the one in listed in spares doesn't fit 2020 models.
Cost Rs 0.
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Old 23rd June 2020, 13:28   #5
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Another travel on my part and the car is going to idle for atleast 3 weeks. Time to use the Hexa car cover!

Tata Hexa XMA Ownership Review-20200621_100707.jpg

Covers well.
The cover also has a option to access the driving seat through a zip.

So net net a good product from Tata. XMA is a value for money option. Now with Hexa going out of production for sometime I expect it to come back not only with the BS6 engine but also with proper features which you expect at the minimum in a 20Lakh vehicle. Stripping off a charger and fog lamps etc doesn't give a good impression. Now with newer variants like Creta 7seater, new XUV and Hector Plus in horizon the battle will be tougher. Hexa can still get decent volume if it doesn't skimp on necessary features and uses the game to its strengths which is a powerful engine, driveability and ride quality.
Tata Hexa XMA Ownership Review-20200621_100722.jpg

Last edited by busydrive : 23rd June 2020 at 15:53.
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Old 24th June 2020, 08:43   #6
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Thread moved out from the Assembly Line. Thanks for sharing!
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Old 24th June 2020, 11:14   #7
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Congratulations! . The colour looks very nice and thanks for you initial ownership review.

I have a XMA myself, mine is a 2017 2nd half model. I bought it used and I got all the modifications done to make it look like the higher model, the XTA. This includes the OEM fog lamps complete console, the second row charger port, sunglasses holder and puddle lamp, I guess it helped that I knew someone in the TATA showroom and he helped me to procure these things not normally provided to owners of lower variants of the beast.
In addition, like you, I have also changed to the alloy wheels, but I preferred to get the 16 inch ones and did not upsize.

Hexa has an owners group, the THOR, which is full of people who really love this vehicle to bits. It is a very under-rated car for what it offers. The ride quality is comparable to many of the high end luxury brands and driving it gives a sense of stability and security on the roads. The auto gear box is fabulous and the sports mode does help one to floor the pedal and pull away from traffic lights. As with any vehicle, there are few niggles reported and it is probably best to take the extended warranty from the dealer.

It is indeed a great vehicle. Pity that TATA did not market it well enough and now production has stopped for a bit.
I am sure you will enjoy the beast. Best wishes.

Cheerio!
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Old 24th June 2020, 11:22   #8
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Congratulations on HEXA and Great Choice busydrive. My friend was in a similar situation last year when he was hunting for a 7 seater automatic. He had checked TUV300, BRV, pre-owned Mobilio and Ertiga that time. He almost paid the advance for latest Ertiga but then suddenly we found a sweet deal for an Hexa XTA which had done just under 8000 kms and that sealed it!
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Old 24th June 2020, 12:43   #9
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Congratulations. The Hexa truly is a very competent vehicle. Wishing you safe and happy motoring.
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Old 24th June 2020, 13:06   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by busydrive View Post
Initial driving impression:


The car also has decent body roll on uneven surfaces. You have to slow down if you want your passengers to have a comfortable ride on uneven surfaces.
Firstly,
Congratulations on your new purchase and I hope that you have a great, safe and pleasant ownership experience with the car.

We have a safari storme and because the car sits even taller than the hexa there's significant body roll too,

On uneven patches going slow might reduce the jerks and jumps, it will still make you sway,

going fast over them will feel much better, tata suspensions and honestly everything in their cars have gotten a great deal better over the decade .

Mod aditya on the official review quoted that the duster's ride quality is met if not beaten by the hexa,

In what aspect did you feel it wasn't up to the mark?
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Old 24th June 2020, 13:36   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by busydrive View Post
Another travel on my part and the car is going to idle for atleast 3 weeks. Time to use the Hexa car cover!

Attachment 2019850

Covers well.
The cover also has a option to access the driving seat through a zip.


Attachment 2019851
Regarding the cover for the car, I have found that when it is very windy, the cover simply flies off. The clip that the guys provide for locking the cover in place is quite useless as the wind will force up the cover and at some point of time the clasp will snap or the cover will rip at the point where the strap is held. A better option will be to get a piece of Velcro stitched to the cover at a position where the wheels are located. This will prevent the cover from flying off during a stiff breeze. I am enclosing some pics for illustration. Hope this is useful to some people. Cheers.
Attached Thumbnails
Tata Hexa XMA Ownership Review-20180523_132827.jpg  

Tata Hexa XMA Ownership Review-20180523_132905.jpg  

Tata Hexa XMA Ownership Review-20180523_133040-1.jpg  

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Old 24th June 2020, 13:58   #12
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Default Re: Tata Hexa XMA Ownership Review

The Missus had immediately said 'We are getting a Hexa next.' after the off-road torture test drive offered by Tata Motors in BKC even though our Safari was still relatively new. My 'good vibes' were also reinforced when one of my most respected 'auto guys' told me that the Hexa has the best ride south of a Rs. 1 Crore car.

My requirement for a car is to own a large Laz-Boy Recliner with large wheels to take on the Mumbai post-monsoon moon-scape.

I have an XTA and stretched my budget specifically for the audio system as I am a wanna-be audiophile. After being subjected to a succession of Safaris, the elders in my family actually find the Hexa easier to get into.

Got the beast just before lockdown, so hardly 1k on the Odo. Looking forward to a forthcoming long drive Mumbai to Manipal and back to drop of a kid to college. 2 owner's groups THOR and HULK have been super helpful in recommending the right after-market accessories and fitments.

Am set for the next 4 years.
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Old 24th June 2020, 18:34   #13
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Default Re: Tata Hexa XMA Ownership Review

First & most importantly, 'Good Choice'

The Hexa was great VFM when it was launched a little over 3.5 years ago. Despite of Tata deleting features in bits & pieces over the last year or so, it remained to be one of the most competent ladder on frame, RWD/4WD vehicle you could buy south of 2 million rupees.

Hope Tata does justice to the BS6 avatar.

I own a 2017 4x4 myself and over the course of 3 years there has never been a single moment when I have regretted my decision. Till date every time I am in it, it brings a smile to my face - mission accomplished, right?

Do join the THOR Telegram group if you haven't already. PM for more info.
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Old 24th June 2020, 19:39   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by alphadog View Post
Congratulations! . The colour looks very nice and thanks for you initial ownership review.
Cheerio!
Thank you. I am not part of the THOR group. Will sign up.

Quote:
Originally Posted by viXit View Post
Mod aditya on the official review quoted that the duster's ride quality is met if not beaten by the hexa,

In what aspect did you feel it wasn't up to the mark?
Thank you. Since Duster is a monocoque it provides lesser body roll. Since overall ride comfort also has some dependency on body roll I made this observation.

Quote:
Originally Posted by McLaren Roxx View Post
First & most importantly, 'Good Choice'
Thank you. Need join the THOR group. Looks like I am missing lot of action
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Old 24th June 2020, 19:59   #15
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Default Re: Tata Hexa XMA Ownership Review

Great review. I am also an XMA owner. 2018 model. It came the second row power socket and all the features which Tata later deleted. Back when I bought, it was a simpler to choose Hexa XMA over Innova GX AT since the latter didn't even have steering mounted controls. Now base model Innova is a lot more feature packed.

Agree with you on the ride quality comparison. I have been in my colleagues Terrano and it felt better. But Hexa suspension was a lot more silent when compared to Terrano. Hexa's ride quality is very subjective. My wife in her first trimester of pregnancy refused to board the Hexa and preferred our Xcent instead for hospital visits saying she preferred its predictable jolts rather than the floating effect that Hexa had.

Last edited by padmrajravi : 24th June 2020 at 20:02.
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