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My Touring Partner - Pearl White Punto 90HP

Discussion in 'Punto 1.3 MJD 90 HP' started by nibedk, Sep 5, 2014.

  1. nibedk

    nibedk Regolare

    Grande Punto 1.3 90 HP
    Hi TFIANS,
    This post is the start of my Fiat Punto Sports ownership thread. I will be posting the whole buying and ownership report in parts. Not getting enough time to compile the whole thing at one go. If I wait for that my Punto would have clocked another 5K on odo by then.

    The Present ...
    Driving a Jan 2014 manufactured Punto Sports since May 18th 2014 when I became the owner of this Italian beauty. Have clocked 6K Kms in the last 112 days .I have been thinking about putting together this report for some time now. Delayed it deliberately as after having driven 6k kms and getting the car’s first checkup done @ 5k I am in a better position to judge the strengths and weaknesses of the car. Secondly I can present my perspective on FIAT's A*S*S after dealing with them for the last few months.
    So here comes the decision making process

    The Decision Making Process Part 1 .....
    The search for my new car started in Feb 2014 after moving to Hyderabad. I had not owned a car myself in India as we stayed together with my parents. He has a 2006 Swift which we were sharing. Before that I had stints in US where I had cars but never owned one in India. Even the Swift that my father owns was gifted by me. I continue using my bike 2008 Avenger even now. I use my bike in most cases except for when I have to travel with family or my daughter.

    I have been a biker throughout but anything related to automobiles have always interested me since I was a kid. I have always kept a tab on the happenings through Auto car, Zig wheels, and Overdrive magazines when we did not have the luxury of Internet. Slowly moved on to the online versions and then to various forums like team-fiat, team-bhp. I knew very well that this year almost each and every manufacturer is coming up with a facelift or a new car. This would have meant that I would have to wait till Aug-Sep to get my hands on these new launches.

    So I and my wife decided to buy A Segment car or second hand B Segment car. We planned to keep it for a year or so and get a new hatchback or sedan after selling it off. So we started off on our search looking for second hand cars. Our requirements
    • All safety features ABS,EBD and Airbags
    • Spacious front seats and back seat good enough for two adults.
    • Good resale as we would get a new car in a years’ time
    • Had to be Maruti( preferably Swift or Ritz) within 4.5 lacs
    • My wife should be able to drive the car
    Visited Maruti True Values and Mahindra First Choice but could not get any top end models with all safety features.

    Most of the cars were either the base or mid versions. We found a fully loaded SX4 diesel which was a 2006 model and had more than 80 K kms for 4 lacs. My previous experience with the Swift led me to believe that most of the cars will have good maintenance costs at such mileage. Secondly I was not sure how would my wife handle a big sedan. So dropped it from the list.
    But boy o boy how quickly things change in life. Fast forward six months and she easily drives her father’s SX4. And the average speed when my wife drives our Punto is usually 10-15 Kms faster than when I drive it.

    Found a 2013 make Punto 75 HP at Mahindra First Choice which had just 12 K on the ODO. I was told that it was used by the first owner for about 8 months and then he sold it off as he was moving out of country for work. The price quoted was 5 Lacs. When I enquired why such a low price for a car which is not even a year old they said that since the owner was in a hurry to strike a deal so he sold it off for a low price. I countered that you guys can still sell it off for a higher price and make more profit. Those guys just didn’t sound convincing to me. I felt that the previous owner may have got a lemon and would have just got rid of it after being unable to deal with FIAT A*S*S. I didn’t pursue it any further.
    Slowly it dawned on me that getting a Swift Z version in used market is difficult. I never looked at classifieds or individual sellers due to lack of time as well as me being new to the city.

    So we dropped the plan of getting a second hand car. The next option was getting a new A Segment Car.The requirement list though changed now
    • Spacious front seats and back seat good enough for two adults.
    • Good resale as we would get a new car in a years’ time.
    • Budget max 4.5 lacs
    • Will be purely used within the city.
    The safety aspect was ignored as most of A Segment cars don’t have it anyway.

    We considered the following cars from various manufacturers.


    • Styling - though I personally do not like it. I feel the fluidic design looks good on bigger cars
    • Quality inside out better than all competitors.
    • Good seating position especially for shorter people.
    • Gear knob positioning. My wife just loved it.
    • Interiors feel a class above all contenders
    • Lots of creases on the body. Without those creases I guess it will be a look much better
    • Extremely dull to drive. These was no fun driving it.
    • Puny Engine. It should have been launched with the 1.1 i10 or Santro engine right from the beginning. Small boot
    • Pricey for what it offers
    • Tall boy design – Easy ingress and egress.
    • Spacious car for the segment it is in. Can take 5 medium built easily.
    • Brilliant to drive in the city. If Hyundai comes up with a variant with all safety features it can be an all-rounder in the small car segment.
    • Brilliant visibility all round. Feels more spacious because of the big windows
    • Usable boot space for a small family.
    • Build quality better than most cars in the segment
    • End of life cycle. It still sells 3K copies every month shows how well engineered this product was.
    • Lack of safety features. Though it was not in my list of requirements I feel this car deserves a fully loaded version. Somehow this car felt more robust than its younger sibling
    To be very frank I didn’t find much against this car for what it offers for the price. We may nitpick but I felt this car to be near perfect in its segment. If this car was to be face lifted today it will beat all cars in it segment.We didn’t consider i10 as it was costly for what it offers now.

    Alto 800/ K10

    • K10 engine on Alto. Power to weight ratio shames bigger cars for many segments above.
    • Maruti should seriously consider creating a more robust version with better tuned shocks, better brakes and safety features. This will then be a brilliant small car to drive
    • Reliability
    • Maruti A*S*S
    • Alto 800 looks plain ugly and Alto K10 design has started to show its age
    • Fit and finish strictly average.
    • The seats didn’t feel as comfortable as the Hyundai’s
    • Low seating position. Can be uncomfortable for elderly and people with back problem.
    Didn’t consider Wagon R and Celerio as they were a segment above. Didn’t find Celerio interesting at all. No USP other than AMT but that too comes without all the safety features.
    Liked Wagon R a lot. Extremely practical car with lots of space. Brilliant seats with acceptable driving dynamics. Only omission is the passenger air bag in the top version. Might have considered it has they provided the same in the top end version.


    • Space, Space, Space and still more space. I sometimes get amazed how Tata engineers can carve so much space inside the cars. Just compare it with A-Star which is a bigger car with less space. Even space in rear is more than that of Swift. The medium built van fit in but not so in Swift.
    • Feature rich for the segment. ICE with four speakers and Bluetooth connectivity. Dual glove box. Multicolored dash etc.
    • Twist version with PS is brilliant to drive.
    • Very peppy engine. Good pick up to keep up with bigger cars in city driving conditions
    • Easy to park almost anywhere one can think of.
    • Cute looks. The Blue shade looked pretty cool with the dual colored dash and black interiors.
    • Steering feel pretty good for a car of this class. Weighed in nicely at higher speeds and feather lite at parking speeds
    • VFM.
    • Feather lite tinny build @ 624 kgs.
    • That engine noise. Still feels like a sophisticated auto. Nano will sell more copies if they can somehow refine the engine
    • Back seats feel like benches. Not much padding or support. Can get tiring over long distances
    • Strictly city car. Not that it cannot be driven on highways but the compromises made to keep the price in check makes it a dicey proposition to travel extensively on highways.
    • TATA A*S*S. Just do not get it after being a dominant domestic manufacturer how have they not evolved well as a service provider for personal cars.
    Chevrolet Spark was not considered even though I like it as resale value was an important deciding factor. Me and my wife both love Beat, but the top end models would have been out of our budget.

    Honda Brio, Renault Pulse and Nissan Micra would also have been out of budget.

    Ford, VW, Skoda, Toyota, Mahindra do not have any small cars.

    Of all the small cars considered and test driven Tata Nano was the one which appealed to heart, the head as well to the pocket.

    I found it to be a very practical car which acres of space inside when compared to its competitors. Pretty feature rich for its call and once price is considered it becomes a superb VFM. Extremely easy to drive maneuver and park. The new PS has made it a more complete car.
    So it was decided that Tata Nano would be the one ferrying us between various destinations over the next 12-15 months.

    But future had something else in store for us.
    Coming soon ….. The final decision.
    Last edited: Sep 5, 2014
  2. limraj

    limraj Superiore

    Linea 1.3
    Nice opening.. Wife drives faster !!! It will be fun to be on the co-driver's seat.
    nibedk likes this.
  3. nibedk

    nibedk Regolare

    Grande Punto 1.3 90 HP
    Yup it really is. This can be attributed to Punto's brilliant speed masking abilities. Most new drivers do this. They are unaware of speeds they are doing unless told. In a Punto you hardly feel the speeds you are doing. I drive keeping the mileage factor in my mind but the best I have got yet is 18 kmpl till now. The average over the 6k kms is paltry 14 kmpl by MJD standards. Any tips and tricks in how to extract the max mileage.
  4. Murphy_Fiat

    Murphy_Fiat Superiore

    Linea T-Jet
    Glued to this thread. Congrats on your punto sir.
    nibedk likes this.
  5. nibedk

    nibedk Regolare

    Grande Punto 1.3 90 HP
    The final decision …..
    As mentioned before because of dire need to have a four wheeled transportation we looked @ A segment cars and decided on a Nano. I was planning to make the full payment by cash and get the Nano.The quote was 2.94 lacs for the twist model. I had not finalized the price though, no bargaining, corporate discount, freebies etc. were discussed yet.

    Buying an A segment car was purely a stop gap arrangement till all the 2015 versions of facelifts or new cars were launched. During Mar- Apr I came across the reports on how so many Indian cars were rated a big zero in safety ratings in the EURO-NCAP ratings including Polo which is supposed to have typical German build quality. All this pointed to one fact that cars with Airbags will be inherently safer than cars without them irrespective of the build quality. The Indian Swift was tested with Airbags and awarded 4 Stars in spite of having an inferior build quality compared to Polo. I am well aware of the value addition these safety features add to a car but I never thought that a Polo without airbags would get a ZERO rating.

    We would have bought a car with all safety features but the problem in India is that there are no cars in A Segment with safety features. What the heck even cars like Swift , i20, polo and even Punto do not provide all the safety features in the base versions. I laud VW for offering airbags and ABS across their model range after this report came out. I guess it is high time other manufacturers start valuing Indian lives more and not think of us as dummies used in crash test. With the NaMO government I wish this is one of the positives changes that would be put in soon. How I wish of the days when people will start buying the top most versions not for safety features but for other fancy features. How fun it would be then. The differentiating factor between the various variants should not be safety features but rather be the fancy features. Safety features should be made mandatory across variants. I really have not understood the mentality of people buying the low or mid end versions of the cars and pumping money on snazzy alloys, stickers, high end audio systems and even zero dep insurance. Aren’t airbags and ABS better insurance for life than zero dep insurance for cars?

    All this got me into thinking if I was willing to risk the life of loved ones by buying a car without safety features even though if it is for a short period of time. We completely dropped the idea of buying a Nano. We were back to square one and decided to start looking at cars with all safety features. It was decided the time taken to select our new car would be the time we wait for the new models to be launched. If the new cars are launched before we make our final decision we would opt for them else we will get the current ones.

    The following are the features/requirements we were looking at in our new cars
    • Budget of 8 lacs. Can be stretched till 8.5-9 if any car provides us with such compelling reasons.
    • Diesel car. Me and my wife both love to travel and hence a diesel made more sense. I was not sure of my monthly mileage but we were sure that we would be making 2 or more trips of 500 kms trips every quarter. I think I made a wise decision here as now am averaging 2000 Kms per month.
    • ABS, EBD and AIRBAGS (the more the merrier) a must.
    • All small nifty features that the ladies of my family( wifey and daughter) find useful like ACC, music system which is easy to operate, child lock ,auto locking etc.
    • Good enough boot to accommodate bags enough for a weekend trip to nearest travel destinations
    • Back Seat comfort and space. It doesn’t have to be class leading but should me comfortable for my parents and in laws whose average age is 60. It should be easier for them to get in and out of the car. Not too much crouching to get into the car. Suspension set up good enough to have a good back seat ride.
    • Should be able to fix a child seat in the back seat.
    My wish list of features
    • Good mid to top range performance. I have driven Dodges, Mustangs, Pontiacs, Cruzes and many Fords in US and love the way they perform beyond 100.
    • Good cornering abilities. I have put 195/70 sections tires on my older gen Swift just to be able to take more speed into and coming out of corners. I wish the Swift had a tauter suspension set up and lesser body roll to be able to enjoy the process more.
    • High speed stability. I have driven Hondas and Toyotas in US as well but they didn’t give the same amount of confidence as the cars mentioned above.
    • Good front and back wipers
    • Defogger. These two features are very useful in rainy seasons if one does a lot of highway driving. You do not have to get out of the car making the drive a lot safer.
    The following manufactures were considered

    Maruti: Swift
    Hyundai: i20
    Volkswagen: Polo, Vento
    Skoda: Rapide
    Fiat: Punto, Linea
    Ford: Figo, Fiesta
    Honda: City

    That’s almost all the major cars in our country south of a million of rupees which are either premium hatch backs or sedans.

    No sub 4 meter sedan was considered. I feel they are sort of in between cars which do not provide the advantages of a hatch nor are they as dynamically sorted as their bigger sedan cousins which have better weight distribution, lower center of gravity and more aero dynamic designs.

    We decided to tick off all sedans as well since most of top end diesels would be beyond 10 lacs and I would have had to actually stretch my budget by quite a margin. So out went Linea, Fiesta, Rapide, Vento and City.

    VW and Skoda: Yeah we all know these Germans make cars which are great to drive. But they need to respect Indian customers more. I admire VWs and Skodas having driven them before but with so many stories of dealership arrogance regarding sales and service, customers being cheated big time etc. So thought of giving these two a miss till things improve. May be will consider them in the next 5 year when I plan to change my car if they have improved by then.

    Figo was ticked off as well due to its anemic engines and poor interiors. Though it was the only car which would have given the Fiats a mighty challenge on the ride and handling department. It has aged now and with next gen Figo rumored to be launched sometime next year I gave it miss. Though it satiated my needs as a driver except for the top end performance and the diesel top end version was well within my budget still something just didn’t feel right.

    So I was left with 3 hatchbacks to choose from The Swift, Older Gen i20 and the Punto. Only the top end models were test driven.


    • Brilliantly tuned engine
    • Slick gearbox
    • Sporty suspension set up
    • Fun to drive hatchback
    • MASS
    • Smart interiors which would appeal to most and offend none
    • Nice body hugging front seats.
    • Best OEM ICE set up.
    • Cramped back seats. The small windows and black interiors make it feel more claustrophobic.
    • Tiny 204 liters boot.
    • Tinny build when compared to Punto and i20.
    • Braking not as confidence inspiring as Punto or i20.
    • Prone to rattling few years down the line. This is from my pervious Swift experience. We already own two.
    Swift was last in the list and one of the main reasons was that I have been driving a Swift for last 8 years. Another one would have taken away the joy of owning a new car. Even my younger brother owns a Swift ZXI.


    • Best engine in terms of both city and highway driving combined. It gives the best of both world. When I test drove none of the facelifts were introduced then. I guess now the crown should go to Polo 1.5 TDI
    • Feature rich. Well most Hyundais are. That’s their core competency
    • Six speed gearbox. Relaxed highway driving and better efficiency.
    • All 4 discs on diesel model. The braking on par with Punto.
    • Most spacious of all three.
    • Biggest boot of 295 liters.
    • Asta optional has 6 airbags.
    • NCAP 5 star safety rating.
    • OEM ICE set up better than Fiats.
    • HASS network not necessarily cheap but the network and availability in Tier 2 cities.
    • Soft suspension set up. Though great for low speed city driving doesn’t inspire any confidence for high speed driving
    • Steering set up. Though very light at city speeds was very video gamish at high speeds. The steering response was very vague at high speeds. These two factors made the driving dynamics of the car pretty average in spite of the good engine and a 6 speed gearbox.
    • Pricing of the Asta (O) variant precariously close to sedans.
    Had not been for the driving dynamics i20 would have been the number one contender. Even if handling was neutral and steering a little more responsive I would have had a difficult decision to make.


    • Classical masterpiece. Looks a million bucks. 50 years down the line may be one of the iconic designs like the Beetle or the Mini Cooper.
    • Good feature list. Whatever it missed out on compared to i20 it makes up in some other way. Like it doesn’t have reverse parking camera but has the most exhaustive MID.
    • Well calibrated HPS. The Fords and the Fiats are ahead in this department.
    • Brilliant suspension set up. Again the fords and the Fiats are neck to neck in this department.
    • 185 mm ground clearance. Great for Indian roads.
    • Good 280 liters boot space.
    • Great brakes. Even with 2 discs the braking was as good as on the i20 with 4 discs.
    • Tank like build. Well most Fiats feel indestructible
    • Wider 195 mm tires. Widest in its class.
    • Blue and Me. Well it’s great once one learns to operate it well.
    • Strong mid to top range performance of MJD 90 HP.
    • NCAP 5 star safety rating.
    • Rubbery, notchy , mile long gear slotting utterly rubbish gearbox. More on that later in my owning experience.
    • Infamous 1st and 2nd gears. Sometime they just refuse to slot properly into the grooves.
    • Sluggish low end performance. The car is a complete dud below 1.5 K RPMS. More on that later.
    • Infamous FASS. The thin network of service centers. Though after moving away from Tata things are moving in the right direction but it needs to improve by leaps and bound. Since Punto is more @ home on the highways Fiat needs to concentrate on having at least service centers along most Tier 2 cities along the Indian highways. That would be one less of a head ache for us Fiat loyals. It’s not that Fiat aren’t reliable on the contrary they are well engineered cars but the problem is if it breaks down on highways we have no one but RSA to depend on. That’s not a great feeling to have with a young family by your side on our Indian highways.
    • Body roll compared to pre 2012 models. 185 is too much of an overkill. It dilutes one of the strengths of Punto. It’s nowhere close to the pre 2012 Fiat models or the Fiesta. The Linea and Fiesta still remain the handling benchmarks. 175 mm would have been a better compromise for Punto.
    It was a mighty tough choice to make with head pointing to either opt for Swift or the i20 and the enthusiast in me pushing towards the 90 HP. It took me multiple test drives at all the dealers available in Hyderabad and covering close to 70-80 kms in various road conditions including highways to convince both the head and heart to go for the Punto 90 HP. So Punto it would be. The final decision was made finally.
    Coming up Buying and Dealership Experience ....
    prabhjot, Ravi and nkrishnap like this.
  6. nibedk

    nibedk Regolare

    Grande Punto 1.3 90 HP
    Buying and Dealership Experience …
    We had two dealers in Hyderabad A.V. Motors and Butta Automotive when I started scouting for my new car. Currently there are three with Ankita Motors starting its operation.
    AV Motors experience ….
    Sometime towards the end of April I went To AV Motors as it was nearer to my place. Took multiple test drives of diesel Emotion and Sports model. I wanted to test drive the 90 HP petrol model as well before booking the car just to make sure that I was not missing anything as far as drive train is concerned when compared to diesel. They didn’t have any petrol model for test drive. Called up Butta as well and they didn’t have one too. On enquiring further I figured out most of dealerships do not have the 90 HP petrol version for test drive. I mean how on earth any prospective buyer decide without taking a test drive. Besides there are lot of petrol heads who may buy one if it was available for a test drive. I was told it’s mostly made to order sort of thing and no dealership stock them. They get a new one once some body puts an order. It doesn’t sell and hence this condition.

    Read through all the reviews of 90 HP petrol and found that other than engine refinement and less lag there was no added advantage over the 90 HP diesel. It is considerably less efficient. It is similarly slow in the lower gears owing to weight minus the lag. It also shines on the highway more than in city. Basically Fiats are more at home on the highways and huff and puff in the cities. The price difference was also only 50 K on road between them. So the price differential would be recovered within 18-24 months depending on how much the diesel is driven even taking into account the diminishing difference between petrol and diesel prices.

    On the auspicious day of Dhanteras I booked a Punto 90 HP by paying an amount of 5K and told the dealership that I would like to check out all the available colors in the stock yard before deciding on the color. I wanted to check out the service center as well. It was pretty late in the evening and we wanted to wrap it off quickly. So I checked with the SA on the final amount that I have to pay. I was quoted 7.9 lacs (50 K off on the outgoing Punto) which included the following
    • Free Floor mats
    • Free Reverse Sensor (Audio Only)
    • Free Mud Flaps
    • Free Insurance
    When I asked for breakup I was told it includes handling charges, RSA and Extended warranty. I asked the SA to seal the deal for 7.8 lacs. He discussed with his manager and said he can offer me 7.8 lacs but will not be able to throw in RSA and Extended Warranty. He said he won’t charge handling charges but I will have to pay for registering the vehicle. I said fine, got the price list and ran home as it was close to 9:00 p.m. I told the SA that I will be looking through the price list and call him for clarification later.

    Next day the SA called me and told that he is sending a person with a Punto 90 HP to my home who will take me to the stock yard and show me the service center as well. I was happy as I would get to drive the Punto again. By this time I had already taken multiple test drives of Punto and TJET as well though it was not in my list of cars considered. More on the Legend of TJET later. We got ready and I got to drive the Punto again. AV motors didn’t have a proper service center then and it was more of a makeshift arrangement in the stock yard. They said they will have the service center functional soon. I have not followed up since then. They had most of the colors except the white one. I was interested in the white one with black roof. I had a few modifications in mind just to give my Punto a unique character. We did like the Tuscan Wine and the Oceanic Blue as well. But the modification I had in mind would not have done much to the darker shades. The Exotic Red with black roof was rejected by wifey. I too feel that Vocal White looks more regal than Exotic Red which was flashier. We were dropped back home. I told them we are interested in the Vocal White with black roof (Sports version sans the sports kit). The sports kit would have cost additional 22 K. I was not interested in the sports sticker or the spoiler. I liked the metal pedals and the door sills though. I thought I can retrofit these later on. So asked them to let me know when we can get the Vocal White 90 HP Punto. I was told that my SA would get back to me soon.

    We returned home and I sat down with the price chart to do my calculations. I wanted to figure out how much cash can I pay and how much loan should I apply for. Besides that I wanted to figure out if the offer made to me is fair. First I called up Fiat customer help desk as I had a few clarification to be made.This is how it went

    Me: Hello
    Customer Representative (CR): Hello Sir
    Me: I am looking at buying a New Punto soon and would wanted to know when is the launch of face lifted Punto expected?
    CR: Sir we do not have any information on that. You can always buy the existing Punto as it has got great offers now.
    Me: Aren’t the offers being made for stock clearance so that the new vehicle can be launched?
    CR: No sir. We still do not have any info regarding the same.
    Me: Ok fine. How much does the extended warranty cost?
    CR: Sir 6.2 odd K.
    Me: What about RSA?
    CR: Sir it’s a part of the package for any Fiat Car that you buy. We do not charge for it.
    Me: One of your dealers is charging 3.5 K for it.
    CR: No Sir. Fiat doesn’t charge for RSA.
    Me: OK. Thanks a lot for all the information you provided.

    I hung up the call immediately and skimmed through the price list. This is what I was going to be charged for. After talking to Fiat CC directly was a little confused as to why AV Motors were charging for the RSA when it comes as part of the package?

    Ex Showroom – 7.37(Hyd) – 50 K (offer) = 687000
    Road Tax – 12% = 82400

    Total = 769440. Now I was little shocked that they quoted me 7.8 lacs on road when the total should have been 7.7.
    I immediately called up the SA to enquire and this is how the discussion went.

    Me: Hello
    SA: Hello Sir. I was about to call you. I wanted to inform that it may take us around two weeks to get the car with your color of choice.
    Me: Fine. Thank you. Can we discuss on the quote you gave?
    SA: Sure sir.
    Me: I would be charged 7.8 as per your quote? I calculated and find out that with road tax the price of the car is 7.7.
    SA: No sir. It would be 7.8.
    I explained him the calculation and told him that he may have done some mistake while adding up. He kept on saying that the calculation is correct.
    Me: Can you please get the calculator? Calculate again and get back.
    SA: Yes sir. I calculated. It comes to 7.7 lacs.
    Me: What is the additional 10 K for?
    SA: Sir it is for the mud flap, reverse sensor, floor mats and the insurance.
    Me: What??? Aren’t all this complementary?
    SA: Yes sir. But we are giving so many things free so we are charging the additional 10K.
    I was like WTF?? How can you charge for something that you promised was complimentary and free?
    Controlling my anger.
    Me: What about the insurance? Zero dep rite.
    SA: No Sir. It is comprehensive only.
    Me: What?? The rate list mentions Zero Dep. I cannot find the word comprehensive in the quotation provided by you. Why wasn’t it intimated when I booked the car?
    SA: Sir when we provide complimentary insurance it’s only comprehensive. You can pay additional 10K for zero dep.
    Me: You are already charging 10K.
    SA: It’s for the free stuff.
    Me: Then how is it free? Ok what about RSA.
    SA: Sir it will cost 3.5 K.
    Me: I just called Fiat and was told that RSA doesn’t cost anything and it’s a part of the package.
    Silence for few seconds.
    SA: Sir I will check on this.
    By this time I had completely lost my cool.
    Me: Stop this bullshit and let me know if you can provide all this with extended warranty for 7.75 lacs.
    SA: No sir.
    Me: Ok fine. Please cancel my booking.
    SA: We will deduct money as we gave you multiple test drives, showed you the stock yard and service center.
    I was fuming by then.
    Me: See I am not cancelling my booking because of the car or the company or the dealership. This is a start of relationship and all you are telling is blatant lies. You are not even keeping your word and on top of it you are telling that you will charge for things which are complimentary. This is unethical and hence I am cancelling my booking.
    SA: Sir I will talk to my manager and get back.
    Even after all this he wasn’t even apologizing.
    Me: Nothing doing. I am cancelling my booking. Do whatever you want to do? If I do not get all my money back I will be taking this up directly with Fiat and then you will be the one to face a lot of heat.

    Disconnected the call and after 15 days got my full booking amount back.
    After disconnecting the call called up Butta Motors and asked them to send someone to my place as I was interested in booking a Punto immediately.
    --- Double Post Merged, Sep 28, 2014 ---
    Butta Experience ….
    Two SAs came to my place the same day. Having learnt my lessons earlier I was better prepared. I had already decided that if the attitude of this dealer is same then I would drop Punto from my list and buy something else.
    As soon as they came they handed me over the price list. I was happy to see that they had mentioned about zero dep and comprehensive insurance separately. RSA wasn’t charged.

    I bargained for the handling charges and registration. I told that I do not require any test drive and I would travel on my own for checking stock yard and service center. I was a little more careful this time and made sure that everything is clearly mentioned on the quotation form and signed by the SA.

    I clearly put my conditions and told them I am not interested to find what they are offering as complimentary/free. I made the below offer
    On road cost – 7.75 lacs which should include the following

    • Additional extended warranty
    • RSA(irrespective of whether they offer it or not)
    • Mud flaps (Fiat OEM – the square ones. More on this later)
    • Reverse Sensor
    • Floor mats
    • Comprehensive warranty.
    • Black Front Grille of Active variant in exchange for the silver one
    • Black OVRMs instead of the Red Ones which comes with White Sports Variant.
    • OEM Alloy for spare tire( I had to pay 5K for it separately)
    The SAs made a few calls frantically as they could figure out from my body language that I mean business. I made it very clear that my hard earned money would go elsewhere if they cannot offer what I am expecting.In 10 minutes the deal was made. I put all the additional info on the back side of the quotation form and got it signed from the SA. So 7.75 lacs it was for Punto 90 HP Sports version sans the Sports kit.

    I paid the booking amount and told them the color of my choice. They said they would check and get back to me if the color is available or they will have to order one. The SA called me back in few hours and told that they have Vocal White and Exotic Red both with black roof top in stock. I asked him if can pass me on the VIN of both the cars. He said they are in the stock yard and he doesn’t have them handy.

    I told that I would visit them the coming weekend and check it myself. I needed to check the service center as well.
    In the mean time I checked for car loan and figured out SBI would be the best. The SA from Butta told me that I need not worry and they will take care of all the loan related paper work.

    We had a week to decide whether to wait for the New Punto Evo or to go with the current one. We were actually tired of waiting for any news on the launch. We started our search process in April and it was already May and still no news of launch. We decided that we will go ahead with the current booking id we do not have any news in the next two weeks. One weekend to go to stock yard and do the PDI and at least one more week to arrange finances.

    Next weekend I went to the stock yard and checked both the cars. The Red one was March manufactured and the White one was February.

    The Exotic Red Sports March 14 IMG-20140510-WA0000.jpg

    The Vocal White Feb 14 manufactured

    I did a PDI of the white one and found no issues. All looked well. Oil levels looked good. Started the car and checked all the gears. Checked the first and reverse gears by moving the car a little ahead and bringing it back. Checked on the odometer and it was 6 KM with H. I asked the SA if it is possible to get it washed and bring it to showroom so that I can check all the interiors. It was pretty hot that day and the car was standing in the open. It was just impossible to sit inside the car and check anything as it was a cauldron inside. He said it’s not possible as then all customers will start putting such conditions. I said I would not take the delivery in case of any mechanical issues found on the day of delivery. In case of any superficial issues with the interiors they will have to fix it the same day.

    I asked him not to register till I arrange my finances and sort out the loan thing. He immediately took me the SBI branch near the dealership. The SA tried to show some tricks to make some money there. I told him straight away that he can take care of the documentation part later on I need to talk to the manager directly. He obliged and I talked to the branch manager and was told that the only additional payment I have to make is 0.51 % of the loan amount for the agreement/hypothecation letter. I called up father who is a retired banker and verified the stuff. He gave me a go ahead. I gave the required documents immediately and asked the SA to keep me updated.He asked if he can register the car. I asked him to wait till the loan is sanctioned.

    The loan was sanctioned on 15th May and still no news of Evo. It was then we decided to go ahead with the current model. I called up the SA and asked him to keep the car washed and ready to be delivered on 17th May, 2014.
    Destiny had the current Punto in store for me. More on that later

    Coming up The Delivery Experience ...
    Last edited: Sep 28, 2014
    Aviral singh, aramico and Murphy_Fiat like this.

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