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Linea 1.4 - 1.5 years with the beauty.

Discussion in 'Linea 1.4 Fire' started by coolboy007, Jun 18, 2010.

  1. coolboy007

    coolboy007 Novizio

    New Delhi
    Well some may have read my review on the other forum mainly Tbhp or Aci but have written this altogether new review for our new forum.. I would detail the review in parts and keep posting it one by one so bear with me for that.

    A picture of my beauty first

    Initial buying procedure and cars covered

    It was in March, 09 when me and dad felt that we needed a “lambi gaadi” for our highway drives and Scorpio wasn’t the safest bet after our pretty bad accident in it. We already had a Santro for going to congested places etc. It was my decision to go for a new car and I had already decided that whatever “lambi gaadi” we now buy ought to have most modern features and most important being ABS and Airbags which should be there at any cost. Let me tell a secret – Linea wasn’t even there in my mind till now, I didn’t know that a car like Linea exists :hit

    Cars considered and reasons for ousting from the race –

    Hyundai Verna – No TD taken for this one. I had already driven it and was madly in love with the car, 90% because of that gem of an engine- the 1.6 Crdi unit which pumped out 110 bhp. The car shoots away like crazy in almost any gear but was very disheartened to note that my main priority – airbags don’t even come in the topmost model costing almost 9 L +. Eliminated from my kitty.

    Honda City – Honda had launched the new city and I pretty much liked the looks of it. On top of that I knew about the loyalty factor that the straight H badge manages to acquire in India. It was a pretty straightforward car – cost quite high for the S MT model and the driveability and gearshifts slick and smooth as expected. Somehow I was disappointed because there wasn’t any feature at all in the car, not even alloy wheels but still we would have most probably bought this as dad was quite happy with the City- somehow I wasn’t convinced but had no choice so was at the showroom and had a conversation with salesman.

    Me: Features kya hain ? (already knew about the engine)

    Salesman : GCON (me clueless), body coloured door handles (we call that a feature?), integrated audio etc etc :lol:

    Me: Opened bonnet and was shocked to see the beautiful Italian marble below and asked him where is the engine guard?

    Salesman: Sir it wont hit from below, Honda has designed it in this way, it doesn’t need it.

    Me: You kidding, even Linea has it and it’s a compulsory thing for our Indian roads. He kept yapping about Honda this and Honda that.

    City not yet out but didnt win my heart too.

    If you ask me about Fiesta or SX4 then Fiesta wasnt even in my consideration and for SX4, i hate its looks and i prefer to stay away from Maruti cars for a reason well kept to me.

    Twist of tale – Linea enters and conquers my heart

    We were just passing by a Hyundai dealership when dad said “ Son, lets go and check out that new car by FIAT- called Linea”. I replied back “When we aren’t gonna buy it, why waste our time on it”. Still I went in almost lackluster with no interest but things changed.

    Standing in front was a Flamenco red Linea – I was like – MENTOS - Zubaan pe lagaam with absolutely no answer or to speak anything. Just standin there and admiring the Aston martin front and beautifully designed car. I almost shouted with joy when I saw the rear of this car, I can bet that it is the best designed butt in all cars till 15 L.

    Salesman came and started interacting and I started asking him questions. I already saw the price list and saw it costed just 7.70 L on road Delhi so I was sure this car is bland.

    Me : Okay dude, what all does this car have.

    Salesman: 1.4 L engine, 90 bhp and blah blah
    Me : Oh…. Leave the tech specs and tell about features (Saw his eyes gleaming)

    Salesman: You would be surprised sir, ACC, Airbags, Abs with Ebd, auto lock, a info giving screen on average etc, Bluetooth connectivity with mobile and a long long list.

    That was enough for me, he kept asking me for the contact number but I bid adieu and walked out. I was shocked, I had expected a barebones car for this cost but it was like having a car for half its cost. Dad sensed something and said “ Its not gonna be a Fiat anyways, don’t even think of it, this company has just come back from death and I wont risk my 8 L on it”

    Listened to dad’s warning through one ear and out from another (SMILEY). Started searching for reviews on all forums. Wherever I browsed I heard all good things and praises for this car – contacted owners personally to check with them, sales weren’t much at that time with long waiting lists so couldn’t ask guys on road driving their love. When I was convinced, I called for a test drive and a silver Linea petrol came home whereas I had requested for a diesel.

    The drive was quite good, with 4 people and ACC on the car did feel underpowered at sometimes and I needed to downshift to get that bout of power. Revving till 6000 rpm was a new found joy for me as its never possible in a Scorpio. Was happy with almost everything barring FIAT A.S.S – more to that fact that salesman didn’t know how to control the ACC.

    Had a drive in MJD too but the engine sounded quite boomy at higher revs and my calculations told me that am buying a sedan for highways so my running wont justify a diesel so petrol it was.

    Fights continued with dad for 10 days and I managed to conquer as sons usually do and the car was booked on 28-3-09. Once Linea was finalized I didn’t even look at City again, I was told that there is waiting so kept waiting for my car to arrive for days until I became restless and threatened to cancel my booking if I didn’t get my car in next few days. My worries about FIAT A.S.S were increasing day by day.

    Delivery day arrives and everything goes fine

    Some pics on delivery day

    I was still wondering that If anything bad were to happen with car, the guy who would be blamed for life would be me. Still I plunged with the risk of buying it – a true Fiati’an in the making. Got a call from dealer, rushed with the remaining money and I was like a jumping jack seeing my own car, which I decided to buy and which is gonna be my personal car – the feeling was ecstatic.

    The delivery process was smooth, I checked the car nicely and found everything allright so got the customary click with family and claps all the way as we exited.

    Next coming -- back to the dealer within 20 mins of delivery with a problem.
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 16, 2014
  2. coolboy007

    coolboy007 Novizio

    New Delhi
    Back to the Dealer within 20 minutes

    I handed over the keys to dad so that he drives till the puja is done. I pushed the central ac vent to left and the damn thing broke, sank my heart then and there and its not what you expect in a brand new car. Something breaking within 20 mins of delivery :firey

    We had driven around 6-7 kms when I peeked into the instrument console and got the shock that speedometer is disconnected and isn’t working.. Now I was furious, turned back after refueling and went inside the dealership shouting my lungs out. How dare they disconnect the speedo. On top of that, they took 20 mins to figure out how to reconnect it after loads of calls to someone. They had no repair for broken vent.

    Other than these 2 terrible things – I enjoyed driving the car that day and was grinning inside the way people were staring at my car. Linea was very less on roads those time and everyone turned back again and again to see what car is it.

    That’s my pre ownership experience – would update the review with the car ownership now related to various things like engine, gearbox, fe, A.S.S etc.

    Would update the review tomorrow with various parameteres judged over a long period of time by me being - engine, gearbox, driveabiility, ergonomics etc, till then adieu
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 16, 2014
  3. NAREN64


    Hi Rajat,

    Wonderfull review. Also post your visit to Himachal Pradesh in the Linea.
  4. VahanPujari

    VahanPujari Staff Member Janitor

    Nice beginning of an ownership report.

    :mrgreen: :-D :drinks Statement of the Day !

    There are no restrictions here on no. of Smilies in a post :mrgreen:
  5. coolboy007

    coolboy007 Novizio

    New Delhi
    Thanks a lot Naren, once am done with the basic ownership report, i would upload those photos too :devilface

    Thanks a lot Amit, am still going through your ownership report. Its really big and very detailed out, would get to it soon, have some doubts.
    I had no other words to describe such was that charming red beauty, i couldnt buy that color thanks to my family :hit
    :wow :drinks , thats a pleasure to hear sire. Thanks god you guys didnt include that stupid one in a world rule :mrgreen:

    Updating my review shortly.
  6. coolboy007

    coolboy007 Novizio

    New Delhi
    Engine and driveability

    (pic taken from net)

    For the initial 2000 kms, I was really really disappointed with this car. With 4 people inside and AC on the car felt as it was struggling to even move. I couldn’t speak of it too as I was the one who chose it. Somehow my car felt a tad underpowered than the one I had test driven.

    Those driving the petrol Linea know that below 1800 rpm, this car is as good as dead. You need to quickly downshift if your rpm falls below 1800 or else it keeps chugging along like our romantic hindi movies at a slow pace. You can blame me for that too, was used to driving a Scorpio which runs away in any gear or any rpm but transition to petrol wasn’t easy. I used to upshift at around 2500 rpm but then jacked it up to 3000-3500 rpm everytime I could. Things changed and I was happy, I understood that this engine needs to be revved to work as all max power is made at 6000 rpm.

    After run in, 4-5 highway drives and some good runs to the hills of Himachal Pradesh, I can say that this aint the best petrol engine to work with. The car does feel just adequately powered at sometimes and it’s a reality which I have accepted. I have hit a max of 165 kmph and even on the hills you wont be disappointed thanks to the driving dynamics aiding the engine.

    Once past the 3000 rpm, power comes in really very nicely but keeping it above the powerband always isn’t possible in city + FE takes a hit.

    The engine has opened up a lot now, theres a world of difference between the pickup in initial kms and now after doing 13000 kms, partly due to fact that it took time to get accustomed to the long clutch. Without AC on, the car is just so much fun to drive, on my last trip to Delhi from Himachal it was really cold and I had so much fun with car when ac was off. The little pushback in seat kinda feeling happens in 2nd and 3rd gear. End result – I had some heck of a fun driving around this car in winters (SMILEY)

    Engine rating : 7/10

    Clutch and Gearbox :

    First thing I said to salesman : clutch is quite heavy for a petrol car dude. Then read over forums that all FIAT’s have a considerably long clutch ply compared to other cars. Could be a turnoff for few in city and especially it was for me until FIAT recalled cars and changed the CSC (clutch slave cylinder).

    I used to get tired sometimes in long jams due to the long clutch until fiat changed this small part. For me, it really made a lot of difference and the clutch felt lighter than before by leaps and bounds and thanks to FIAT for it.

    Coming to the gearbox, I want to meet the guy who made the 1st gear for Linea (SMILEY), just a totally useless gear. Its been 1.5 years and still it gives the jerks and makes me look like a jerk in front of everyone.

    Overall gear shift quality is good, nice short throws and gears get in nice and easy. 5th goes in in a strange fashion though.

    All in all I have no complaints with the gearbox of the Linea. I find it really good, the gears may not be the slickest type but they do their job quite well. One strange phenomenon “In 4th gear, around 40 or so when I dab the throttle the gear lever jerks”.

    Love the ultra small gearshift lever, Scorpio's is almost thrice in length than this :uh

    Transmission rating: 9/10

    Design and looks

    I can fill the whole forum up with the goodness and the awesome looks stories of Linea. This no doubt is one of the best looking cars in C or D segment and wins this competition hands down. You need to hate FIAT to hate Linea’s looks even though looks are subjective and am yet to find a guy who said “Duh, the car looks boring”. The Aston martin type front and the unmatchable rear with long flowing lines have no comparison.

    1.5 years down the line, I still admire the beauty every morning I see her. The paint still gleams and the cute front smiles back at me every now and then. The car still shines as it used to on delivery day and I have really worked hard to save the car from bikers and rickshaws.

    The looks are unmatchable and nothing comes close to it, from headlamps to read lights, it seems God designed this car himself.


    Rating: 10/10 (I could even give it a 15/10)
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 16, 2014
  7. Andy

    Andy Esperto

    Chembur Mumbai
    Grande Punto 1.3
    Great Review mate...
  8. bnzjon


    City of Super Kings !
    Cool review Coolboy.

    you said it. I have many a times admired this car and have said to myself "God's created Heaven and Earth. Adam and Eve. Finally Linea and Punto".

    Yes; even after 1.5 years, the car retains its charm. Still not feeling bored with its design.
  9. ThePunter

    ThePunter Regolare

    Yes, we do all get a great at heart feeling being owners of a punto/Linea.
    And it adds up a zillion times when we get to hear similar thoughts and comments like this ownership
    report and other in this forum. and day by day the feeling just dont take the name of decreasing u see..!
  10. VahanPujari

    VahanPujari Staff Member Janitor

    May be transition from torque'y diesel to Linear Petrol is the culprit. I got used to the combo of Long clutch-gear-accelerator & its synchronisation, in no time (in 15-20 days) & now I just zooooom even in city - 99% of cars remain in RVM :mrgreen: What I found is that the key is quick up shifting the gears. e.g. when I take off from a signal, in no time (may be in 100-200 meters or 8-10 seconds, I'm in 4th or 5th gear.

    It reminds me of Zoozoo :mrgreen:

    And BTW Rajat - You can upload/ post pics directly on our forum without using any image-hosting site. In fact, the forum prefers it that way & do not want to rely on image-hosting site. The other disadvantage is the pics posted from such sites are filtered & not visible thro' certain proxy servers e.g. I was surfing thro' proxy servers today earlier & I couldn't see any of the pics posted by you.

    Here is the related topic --> http://teamfiat.co.in/forum/viewtopic.php?f=2&t=39

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