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Fiat Linea Tjet: Ownership review after 10 years and 55,000 km

The throttle response is so good it really does feel like have a free Pedal Tune and I am still averaging about 10.5 kmpl in Bangalore city driving with all these performance mods.

BHPian keroo1099 recently shared this with other enthusiasts.

10 year report card for my Tjet:

The Tjet turned 10 yesterday so it’s probably a good idea to record how the two of us have gotten along in this long-term relationship.

In short, it’s been utterly butterly reliable which is surprising considering the bad name that Fiat has garnered over its stay in India, and my usage of 55k which hasn’t done any favors to the car. The only regime I have scrupulously followed is a yearly oil change even though the fully synthetic oil I used can run longer. I initially started out using Xado’s fully synthetic 5W40 which was brilliant and kept the engine nice and smooth but last year had to switch to Addinol which I think is just as good. Both oils just made the engine stress-free and very quiet under load compared to the OE oil Fiat uses. My gearbox continues to use a Xado additive which has kept the shift action positive (for a Fiat) and the gearlever from mimicking a limp spaghetti.

I didn’t really need to see the condition but changed all the belts and spark plugs at the 5-year mark as recommended. The one item that I changed earlier than normal is the brake rotors which started pitting because of my usage and even skimming the discs didn’t eliminate the brake shudder. From Boodmo I pro-actively ordered and DIY changed the plastic trim around the windshield that was discoloring and showing its age. The only other major scare I got was with the AC not cooling properly which thankfully required a couple of ‘O’ seal replacements and a gas top-up and not a wallet-hitting replacement. I have changed all the hose clamps to the more regular screw/nut SS type as I didn’t want to get stuck on the highway trying to get the proprietary clamp of a blown hose. Luckily all my plumbing hoses seem to be in good condition including all the silicone hoses to my aftermarket intercooler and none have required any tightening of the clamps. My original battery lasted 4 years and the replacement 55Ah Amaron (50Ah is stock) showed signs of acting up after 6 years so was replaced a few weeks back with an identical unit. The original wiper blades were replaced with a set of Bosch which were ok and those were later replaced with a set of Syndicate blades which seem to be as good as the originals at a fraction of the cost. Considering all the mods I have done with better lights (HID fogs in projectors) I have only replaced one blown brake light and this includes all the cabin and accent lights which are still OE. Talking about the interiors, none of the plastics have faded, no squeaks and rattles from anywhere (the door damping contributes a lot to this) which is amazing considering the number of times I have removed the door pads to tweak something behind, and the seats look and feel as good as new with no sag or wrinkling of the leather. The Isudar PX6 HU that I got about a couple of years ago continues to function as promised and along with my Infinity Ref speakers produces a sound that I am happy with and has made my Hertz amp redundant for now.

I had changed my tyres to Hankook’s when I bought the car and they were pretty good and lasted me about 30K. The Michelin PS4s that I have now are reaching the end of life on age and not tread wear, but still feel good with no micro cracks, very little tyre noise, and zero punctures to date. The low GC suspension setup that I fitted some years back is working fine and the used rear coils show no signs of sagging. This conversion is worth it if you value low-speed rides and high-speed handling.

The Gyeon ceramic coating done about 4-5 years ago is still holding but now needs some correction work for swirls other than that the paint has very little orange peel and more importantly no signs of rust as yet even with an occasional hard water wash. All I have done in this period is dust lightly with a Jopasu if dry dust, and use a two-hand method to wipe with a wet microfiber and dry with another, and once in 6 months clay the cat, that’s it, it’s worked like a charm for me. All the glass areas are coated with DIY AvalonKing ceramic coating which prevents water from sitting on the surface and just beading off which is a real blessing at night.

The engine on the Jet is bulletproof, and the Wolf remap along with the bigger intercooler and my DIY version of a cold air intake is working like a charm and has eliminated the low-speed lag which resulted in slipping the clutch over speed breakers. It feels like a much bigger beefier engine now and even my cousin who drives a Cayenne in the US thought it was a 2.0L turbo from the initial grunt even when fully loaded going up the ghats to Ooty. The throttle response is so good it really does feel like have a free Pedal Tune and I am still averaging about 10.5 kmpl in Bangalore city driving with all these performance mods. On the highways with CC set at 100 the max I have managed to get from Bangalore to Mysore is about 16 kmpl.

Most by now know that it is impossible/expensive to get parts for any Fiat so over time I have collected a few critical items and kept them in stock.

  • Clutch kit with flywheel from LUK which was a hell of a lot cheaper than OE
  • Febi Bilstein front strut mounts which a friend got from Germany
  • A recommended set of front and rear brake pads, forget the make but not OE
  • A set of Bosch spark plugs instead of the OE NGK

I am hoping and praying I can keep this car going for another 5 years and then decide if I can afford a suitable upgrade which is looking increasingly unlikely given the cost of new cars today.

PS: I completely forgot that I had changed all the engine mounts on the last service. It was a pure fluke that we discovered that two of the mounts Hydraulic and gearbox were completely shot but the car was still driving normally except for a mild vibration at idle. Decided to change all three posts and the car has become even smoother with nary a hint of vibration roughness.

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