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My new Fiat Grande Punto 90HP Bossa Nova White

Discussion in 'Punto 1.3 MJD 90 HP' started by redbull, Dec 10, 2010.

  1. redbull

    redbull

    Messages:
    292
    Bangalore
    Thanks for the complement. Overlooked this one as I had another pressing issue occupying me. :D
  2. redbull

    redbull

    Messages:
    292
    Bangalore
    In Yercaud. 498 km roundtrip from Bangalore with all sightseeing etc. Total MID mileage 20.8 kmpl. One thing I noted is that stability and balance of the car has improved drastically after removal of the non standard rear spoiler.

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  3. redbull

    redbull

    Messages:
    292
    Bangalore
    Just as I was about to write this post.... bam.... my boss calls, a major outage at customer site and I have to attend to it. :|. "yeh patta dekha hai .... kutto ka koi Sunday nahi hota. yeh sala maneger kabhi bhi laath mar ke jaga deta hai".

    Anyway, got my CSC replaced today at Concorde Mysore Road. Clutch feels somewhat lighter now, not that I was having too much of a problem with the ceramic one - just some jerky grab but lately that also seemed to be getting smooth (or was I adjusting). Landed there right at 9:30 am - this is one heck of a fight for me - to get up early - I wake up a 10 ish :p SA lead, Mr. Somu, if I heard him right, asked if I would sit through two hours. I said I'll. As I entered the lounge, I was feeling a bit weird with my car around yellow number plates (yeah, prejudice speak, I know), but later a lot of FIATs started pouring in. The lounge was stuffy and I could not understand why till they switched on the AC and then I realized, oh what a difference AC makes. Everybody was served two cups of tea/coffee. I went through the day's headlines, read about the mid sized diesel sedan shootout in AUTOCAR and also saw some regional flick with a pretty looking southie chic on TV. The lounge is right beside the workshop and one can see all the glorious and some not so glorious activities going on. Interestingly, I saw a hammer being used, and no - it was not a body job. It was being used on the underside of a FIAT Palio, but then if orthopedicians can use one on humans, perhaps cars are fair game too.

    After about an hour and a half later, Mr. Gopal, SA, gestures from inside the workshop to come over. I had complained of a slight wobble at 80 filtering though. It's been 4500 kms after the last balancing at Madhus when it was taken care of. I think FIAT owners and FIAT detractors, both are incorrigible nit pickers. For that wobble, I had asked them to check for rim bend, tyre defect and a thorough check of suspension and steering assembly. What Mr Gopal proposed is that he would fill air and then we would go for a test drive first. Yes I had also asked for a rattle to be fixed - underneath the front passenger seat - he tested that first - on a rough patch. Then he handed me the wheel to test for wobble. Surprisingly the wobble at 80-90 had vanished on the same Mysore Road where I had felt it last weekend on my trip to Coorg. Mr. Gopal said it was tyre pressure - I digested this with a pinch of salt. He also told rim bend etc. will cause some major problems, not something which is barely felt. Yesterday only I was thinking of changing the shoes to Yoko C drive and was inquiring tyre shops - seems this variety is out of stock at most places and fast disappearing because of some statutory issues. But if the wobble is sorted out, I don't intend to spend unnecessarily. Come to think of it, I was of the opinion that the GY GT3s, because they are hard tyres, were hurting my suspension - this when the company itself has provided these as standard equipment !!! Did I mention "nit picker"?

    I have been to this service center now for the 3rd time in two months, not for any fault of theirs, but just to keep my baby in top notch condition - and I have been liking the attitude of these guys. The first time, during the monsoon checkup, next before going to Coorg, I got about half liter oil topped up @ 6000 kms. Then today, for the CSC replacement and some consequent brake fluid top up of quarter liter. Till today I haven't been charged one naya paisa. Oh yes the first free service at Concorde Dairy Circle was also zero invoice. The first time, I was attended to by Mr. Gopal, last time, by Mr. Chetan - all of them, Mr. Somu, the SA lead, as well, seemed to have a friendly, but at the same time, professional air about them - I will say, these guys can take on Hyundai. Hyundai people are thoroughly professional, but cold and corporate. Also you can't expect to extract even an infant dropper worth of free top up from them. With all the negative propaganda going on against TATA service centers, I was pleasantly surprised with Concorde - and the Mysore Road center seems to be less crowded and the people are more eager to attend. Ya, they took some time to source the CSC - about a month, but they did get one for me.

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    Now finally the machine - Money spent on this car - each and every dime - is well spent. Past 6000, I noticed a marked smoothness in the engine. After 7200 kms, it is even difficult for me to judge whether it is indeed a diesel or a petrol.... makes the right kind of noises .... hehehe .... I mean, I don't like super silent motors - an engine needs to fill the ears. What a highway cruiser, but more than the ride and handling, I have fallen for the engine. One more thing is that lately I have changed to BPCL diesel from HPCL. May be, i don't know, may be that could be one of the contributing factors to the smoothness. After removing the rear spoiler, the rear end lightness has also gone. Earlier I would feel as if the rear of the car was floating, now it's not there. If a small excess weight at the wrong place on a tyre can cause serious steering vibration, I think an incorrectly put light weight exterior mod can put the aerodynamic stability out of balance. I don't plan to put even the company spoiler now. I do baby my car - no uncecessary torture. I religiously slow down and steer past potholes where possible - just because the car can take it does not mean I want to put it through testing conditions every time. It's my "bacchaa" after all. And surely it does respond when I demand performance at it's tolerance limit. Step on the accelerator and with a scream it will move forward like a rocket. Can't avoid pot holes, ride over them - nothing too serious. Raining cats and dogs, no bother.... Man this car is getting better and better everyday - what a delight - delectable - delicious .... no words to match the feeling behind the wheels.

    Photos of recent trip to Coorg - 850km.

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  4. Tony

    Tony Esperto

    Messages:
    2,048
    Kalamboli, Navi Mumbai
    Kuwait
    Grande Punto 1.2
    Nice photography dude, specially the last one is awesome....
  5. varoon9999

    varoon9999 Superiore

    Messages:
    769
    New Delhi,HP 48
    New Delhi,HP 48
    Grande Punto 1.3
    redbull bro great pics,

    white looks deadly with the black tints.

    imo mudflaps are spoiling the charm.
    Last edited: Sep 11, 2011
  6. redbull

    redbull

    Messages:
    292
    Bangalore
    Iknow, absolutely third rate third class product. Just being a wee bit more responsible towards fellow motorists. Are there any aftermarket fiber ones for Punto?
  7. redbull

    redbull

    Messages:
    292
    Bangalore
    Update - found a bent screwdriver under the hood :eek: :eek: :eek:

    The reason I opened the hood is to check on the power steering fluid. There is some humming sound coming from the steering column now. The fluid level seems OK, may be more than MAX (may be because the engine was hot). The steering feels lighter than earlier. But why would a CSC change have any bearing on power steering ??? The humming noise is irritating though. Very low intensity drone - can only be heard in a silent basement. But somehow also felt while driving. The full turn power steering noise is drastically loud now. It was barely audible earlier. Going to TASS again tomorrow.
  8. redbull

    redbull

    Messages:
    292
    Bangalore
    Went to TASS yesterday to return their screwdriver. Each one of the SAs sported that characteristic smile - caught with pants down. Anyway told them about the mild hum from the steering column. As expected, the reply was "this is normal". Tested the noise in a test drive car, couldn't make out the whine, since the NVH was significantly higher, it could have drowned under the engine noise. Left it at that, since it was not much of a bother, but I definitely did not hear it earlier - may be my engine NVH has gone down a notch or two. I definitely like to rev her up at lower gears now.

    Another feeling I have is that while moving, some metal parts are rubbing against each other - again very faint, people may not even feel it. I did not feel it the first day after CSC change. Can't feel it if the car moves very slow - say parking speed.

    This is the whole damn problem with service centers - they will neither have time nor the willingness to devote to these exotic problems - if I go with the diagnosis, they may rectify it, but to debug the problem - that's another ballgame altogether.
  9. redbull

    redbull

    Messages:
    292
    Bangalore
    Just completed a 500km run from Bangalore to Munnar. Amazing handling on ghat roads. Sheer fun throwing her around on the twisties. I never had so much confidence driving on the mountains. Another amazing fact. Last night, barely had 3 hours sleep, so started the journey feeling a bit exhausted, but at the end of a nine hour drive, I feel relaxed and well rested ??!!!

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  10. redbull

    redbull

    Messages:
    292
    Bangalore
    Covered 1100 kms in Munnar trip. MID showed 19.8 average. Went via Krishnagiri, Salem, Perundurai, Kangeyam, Dharapuram, Udumalaipet, Marayoor. Came back via Poopara, Bodimettu, Bodinayakannur, Theni, Periyakulam, Dindigul and all the rest 370 kms to Bangalore via Karur, Salem, Krishnagiri. Also visited Topstation with Matupatty and Kundala reservoirs enroute. Two lessons learnt

    1. Don't overexert at higher altitude - can precipitate high altitude sickness. I did overexert myself with an enthusiatic descent and climb at Topstation. The induced rotten feeling stayed with me the whole time. I only felt better after Bodimettu, the next day while returning, where the descent starts and is quite steep and I could feel getting better and better as I lost altitude. With the ghat section exit I was in my normal self and completed the rest of the 450 kms without any issue. At one place near Chinnakanal falls, it was getting difficult for me to move the steering and do gear shifts. I stopped for five minutes to catch some breath. I had carried a couple of redbull cans just for S.O.S. and they came handy. I don't know if there's really something in those energy drinks or it's just a placebo, but it did work - my nervousness and loss of stamina seemed to have been cleared with half a can down and I could start driving again - my main concern that time was to lose altitude, staying in the middle of nowhere would not help, so did not bother with any more photo shoots.

    2. Be careful with those dinosaurs (lorrys) - I bet they have dinosaur sized brains and surprisingly, the dinosaur agility too. I nearly crashed into one while it veered suddenly from the middle lane to the fast lane without warning and I was doing some 120 odd. I must say the brakes saved me and that too without any sort of drama. Now I would rather get close and wait, honk and signal to my satisfaction, and try to suddenly zoom past - no more taking for granted these dino idiots.

    Some more pics:

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