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An affair to remember...

Discussion in 'Punto 1.4 Fire' started by ancientmariner, Jul 15, 2010.

  1. ancientmariner


    Disclaimer : This post might not help anyone who is looking for specific technical inputs, comparisons with other cars. There are a lot of knowledgeable threads in this forum. This writeup is just to share my overall experience.

    It was one fine day on April 1st that a thought dawned upon me. It is about time I had a car. Reasons were many. Somehow before this, I did not find any compelling reason to buy a car. As they say when you decide to do something, the entire universe conspires to make that happen. Reasons came flashing thick and fast and I embarked on my search for ‘the’ car.

    To give a little background about myself, I am not much of a driving enthusiast. I love driving but that’s it. I have driven an automatic over the past 3 years in US but had never ventured into driving a ‘manual’ car in India. I decided to take the plunge this time and took my driving classes. On 8-10 hour drives on interstates and freeways in the US, I would happily get into the passenger’s seat while my friends would fight over the driver’s seat. But like I said, I love getting behind the wheels but not crazy enough. I must also admit, I am a dud when it comes to the technicalities involving the car. Terms like low end torque, body rolling, steering feedback , ride stability were alien to me. After having driven many rental cars in US, the reaction, mostly would be ‘chalane me mast tha’ after the drive. Hence I started with a handicap : What to look for in a car ?

    I did narrow it down to two things : I wanted a hatchback and a petrol one at that.

    So I convey my decision of buying a hatchback to my circle of friends over lunch and pat came the suggestions : Swift, Punto,i10,i20,Beat,Figo. Thoroughly confused I was advised by a friend to refer to TBhp for better reviews. I open up TBhp and the first link I find is GTO’s review of Polo. I liked the car and after reading the review and comments decided : this is ‘the’ car. Promptly shot an email to the VW showroom on Hosur Road. Got the price list. Analyzed the features vis-à-vis the price. Found to be a tad costly but I liked the car. Asked for a test drive but they said that I will have to come down to the showroom. I thought I will do a test drive on my way back from work. In the meanwhile also found out that the waiting period was around 2 months.

    A week passed by.

    My eyes fell on the i20. Liked it. Again read the reviews and comments on TBhp, drooled over its looks and decided: this is ‘the’ car. Requested for a price list from the Hyundai showroom on Hosur Road. Did the price/feature comparison again. This went on for a couple more weeks. Booked a test drive. The Polo faded from memory but I still wanted to take a test drive.

    And yeah, I was also contemplating on buying the Swift, of course without researching much as this was the car that everybody had !! Again a waiting period of 3-4 months dampened the enthusiasm.
    And also, i10 was on top of my list for a considerable number of days primarily because of its price factor. But then again. It was too common on the roads for my liking.
    But ofcourse, the Chevy Beat too featured in my dreams for a while. It didn't appeal much to me.
    and then, the Ritz got a passing mention. Only if the designer had bothered to finish his job.
    I have no reasons why Figo did not get a look-in. I simply missed it. Period.

    A friend suggested Punto. I replied ‘I don’t like the looks’. And I haven’t seen anyone drive it.

    In the meanwhile I continued to read about the i20. This felt pricey. The showroom folks called me up and landed at my house with the demo car. I test drove the car. Felt nice. I told them that I would need some time and would get back to them. Put up a question for my FaceBook friends ‘i20 or the Polo’ and the replies poured in. Somewhere in between those replies, a friend Arvind (arishi in tbhp/teamfiat) chipped in ‘why not the Punto?’

    And then I opened up the Punto review thread on Tbhp. Read through GTO’s review and ALL the comments posted for another two weeks. At the end of it, I was confused.

    In the meanwhile, I had changed my job, and with it I lost the opportunity of driving the Polo . Lame excuse ? Didn’t I tell you about the ‘universe conspiring and yada yada theory’

    Heck, falling in love with a girl was easier. But I started liking the Punto’s looks. Associating yourself with your car is more like the feeling when you first meet your girl. You just like her (without going into the details of whether she cooks, is working and blah blah ).

    I started my relationship with Punto the way I started it with my wife. I fell in love.

    On another fine Saturday morning on May 15th, a day after my birthday, I landed at Prerana Motors on Sarjapur Rd. I was greeted by the salesperson. I showed my interest in a 1.4 Petrol Epack. He mentioned that only the diesel is available for a test drive. Took the drive. The clutch travel was a bit long to my liking but after the drive I remarked ‘chalane me mast tha’. Promptly handed over the booking amount.

    I must admit, I did note down the pros and cons of each car from the various threads. It all boiled down to one thing. There is no perfect car.. perhaps. You choose your car based on what you want to compromise on. I get asked : Why Punto ? I don't know. It just happened. I didn't even test drive the 1.4 petrol !!

    On a side note : Our names ( mine,dad,sister and wifey's) start with P. The name of our house starts with P. The showroom where I booked my car starts with P. So it was only poetic justice that this is the car I chose.

    (Buying experience and driving experience to follow...)

    Pratish Pillai
  2. Ravi

    Ravi Staff Member Janitor

    Grande Punto 1.3
    Pratish, really excellent review.
    This says a lot, and I am sure relationship will grow with time.
    Waiting your further review.
  3. J Ravi

    J Ravi Esperto

    Thank god, you did not choose the other P, I mean, Polo. :mrgreen:
  4. Grandeur

    Grandeur Staff Member Janitor

    A relation which takes its own time to build, last long. :)
  5. VahanPujari

    VahanPujari Staff Member Janitor

    Nice start to an ownership report and more importantly to a long-lasting relationship..... ::D
  6. nikhilanand7


    Nice write up ::T
  7. Bala

    Bala Esperto

    Nice review,write up, Pristish,happy motoring
  8. Gmittal

    Gmittal Amatore

    Eindhoven, Netherlands
    Your story is similar to mine, even Arvind is having his big hand in convincing me for GP 1.3. Thanks Arvind
  9. vishwas


    Brilliantly articulated. I feel most Punto buyers are romantics at heart, the "love at first sight" is the reason I guess why most of us have bought it.
  10. ancientmariner


    Thanks guys. Will update the rest soon :)

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