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Which car? - Car buying queries answered here!

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SANTA's HERE

I am planning to buy an SUV with a budget of Rs 25 lakh. I have considered the Toyota Fortuner, Hyundai Santa Fe, Chevrolet Captiva, Honda CR-V, Ford Endeavor and BMW X1. I believe the Santa Fe is the best all-rounder of these, and I’m considering buying one. Should I go for it?

 

Anand Bawa, via email

You are right about the Hyundai Santa Fe. It’s a seven-seater, which cars like the X1 and CR-V are not. It has the most power on offer and is the quickest accelerating seven-seater SUV in its category. The engine is very refined, peppy and it returns good mileage, too. What’s more, it looks nice both on the outside and inside. Hyundai is also planning to assemble the Santa Fe here in India in the next few months, which should bring down its price. It comes highly recommended.

STICKY SITUATION

I have been driving a Maruti Suzuki WagonR since 2002 and am ready to buy a new diesel car. I’ve identified the Nissan Micra, Tata Manza and Hyundai i20, in that order. My average monthly commute is 2,000 to 2,500 km. In addition to this I make four or five 1,000 km trips a year. Based on these requirements, and also keeping maintenance costs in mind, which car must I pick?

Ramakrishnan, via email

If your focus is on efficiency, cost of maintenance and the like, then of the three, we think the Nissan Micra diesel may just be the car you should be looking at. It’s pretty efficient and has reasonable running costs, because of the 1.5-litre dCi motor that has proven itself well in Indian conditions on the Logan as well. The other two, the Manza and i20, are quite efficient too, while cost of maintenance is dependent on use and other factors. At the end of it, all these cars have more or less similar running and maintenance costs, but in the long-run, we believe the Micra should work out a bit cheaper.

CALIFORNIA DREAMING

I want to buy a sports car. I have shortlisted the Porsche 911, Lamborghini Gallardo, Ferrari California and the BMW M3. I already have an Audi TT. My budget is about Rs 3 crore. Please suggest the best car out of the above.

Anubhab Kar, via email

Firstly, we would like to congratulate you on your dilemma — it is the sort that most people would give an arm and a leg for! Out of the cars you’ve listed, we would suggest the Ferrari California. It has a fantastic V8 engine offering tremendous performance, it can seat four people (at a pinch), you can drop the top (in the right weather conditions) for that wind-in-your-hair feeling, it looks great and, well, it’s a Ferrari! Oh, and it’s in your budget, too!

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