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Which car?


Chevy chase

I am looking to upgrade from a Chevrolet Aveo to the next level of sedan. I drive 80 km a day on weekdays and make 400 km trips with my family of four adults once a month. I will be driving the car myself on most days, and it will be chauffeur-driven on some days. Do I opt for a diesel? I have been told that they have a higher maintenance cost when compared to petrols over time. I am looking at driving pleasure, interior quality, features and rear seat comfort too; all this within a budget of Rs 11 to 13 lakh. I intend to keep the car for five years.



Dinesh, Mumbai

With your kind of driving you really ought to consider a diesel-powered car. The car that comes closest in terms of satisfying your needs is the Chevrolet Cruze. The 2.0-litre diesel engine is quite powerful, it’s reasonably good fun to drive, has decent space for four to five occupants, is well-loaded and has good quality interiors, especially in the new all-black trim. It may not be as comfortable as say the Toyota Corolla as far as rear seat space goes, but on the whole, it’s the best combination of looks, driving pleasure, comfort and features for the kind of money you are planning to invest.

Suzie Q

I want to buy a car with a budget of Rs 5.5 lakh for my daily commute of 45 km. I require a car that delivers good mileage, is low on maintenance, has decent power and resale value and is also a value for money buy. I have been considering the new Maruti Suzuki Swift and the Volkswagen Polo, but I am a little confused. Which car do I buy?

Bibhuti Bhusan Mishra, via email

The Maruti Suzuki Swift is the best hatch when you consider all factors. It’s good fun to drive, is more spacious now and has a good set of features. Both the diesel and petrol engines are frugal and peppy and we think you can consider the diesel version for yourself. If the waiting period for the Swift is too high, look at the Ritz which works out to be a very good alternative.

T-Jet set

I am planning to buy the Fiat Linea T-Jet sometime next month. Would you recommend this purchase? What is your view of the car and is it better than the new Hyundai Verna or the Honda City?

Dhiraj Shetty, via email

The Fiat Linea T-Jet is a fun-to-drive car, is well-loaded and has very sorted driving dynamics. Honestly, there is nothing wrong with the car, except that in light of the Honda City’s price correction, it does look slightly overpriced. If you really enjoy driving and are smitten by the Linea, go ahead, though we will always recommend that you drive a hard bargain since Fiats typically depreciate rather quickly.

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