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BSM Which Car - April Edition 3 - Vento, WagonR, Ford Figo

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VENTO BUY?

Considering the factor of rocketing petrol prices and my annual run of approximately 18,000 km (which includes one long trip of 2,500 km, to and fro), I am planning to upgrade from a hatchback to a diesel sedan. My budget is Rs 10 lakh and I can wait for a couple of months. Kindly suggest a car which is good in terms of comfort for city driving as well as on long drives, has good mileage, reliability, low maintenance, excellent after sales service and reasonably priced spares. Rajveer Thakur, via email

We continue to maintain that the Volkswagen Vento is the best diesel sedan for under Rs 10 lakh. It has good space management and enough room for up to five persons, rides quite well and has the best motor on offer in its class, with very good fuel efficiency. Volkswagen may not have the most inexpensive after-sales experience, but we think that the Vento, overall, is the best buy.

GIVE IT SOME GAS

I want to purchase a small LPG car. I have shortlisted three models – the Maruti Suzuki Wagon R Duo, the Hyundai Santro Eco GL and the Chevrolet Spark LS LPG. I need fuel efficiency and low maintenance. Which car should I buy? Pabitra, via email

Looking at all the LPG models you have considered, we think the Maruti Suzuki Wagon R may be the best one of the lot. It has the most interior room on offer and, while the boot is on the small side, it shouldn't be too much of a problem if your driving is mostly in urban conditions. The three-cylinder engine is efficient, powerful enough and given Maruti's low-cost of running, not very expensive to maintain either. We think it should work best for you.

HILL FACTOR

I have owned a Maruti 800 for the last 13 years, and now I intend to purchase a new car. My budget is around Rs 4-6 lakh. I stay in Himachal Pradesh where the roads are not that good, and my average running of the car is 100 km per week. Which model suits me, taking into consideration my budget? I am planning to purchase a diesel car, as I am very particular about fuel efficiency as well as comfort. I plan to buy a sedan, or else a premium hatchback. Sometimes I have to travel long distances also, so there should be enough luggage space as well. Aabhas Pandit, via email

It looks like the Ford Figo TDCI is the ideal car for you. It's got good space for four to five persons, a fairly large and flat boot and a torquey and efficient diesel engine too. What's more, it's good fun to drive up in the hills, and has decent ride quality on offer as well.

Any automotive question?

Ask us at srinivas.krishnan@bsmail.in