I currently own a Hyundai Santro Xing, which I have been driving for the last eight years. I am looking to upgrade now, and am considering the petrol versions of the Hyundai i20, Ford Figo, Volkswagen Polo and Skoda Fabia. My budget is around Rs 6.25 lakh. I would like the car to be fuel efficient, have good rear seat comfort, be easy to maintain and have pleasant interiors too. Which of these cars would suit my requirements best? And do any of them come with a CNG option, as that will work out very economical.
Abhishek Ganeriwala, via email
Going by your requirements of fuel efficiency, rear seat comfort and pleasant interiors, the Skoda Fabia fits the bill. The only issue with Skoda is with ease of maintenance — but the company is indeed trying to improve its after-sales service. The fail-safe option is the i20, which suits your needs very well, but it is not as efficient as the Fabia. Though the i20 is mildly more thirsty, it is overall an excellent car — in terms of quality, space, ease of driving etc. As far as CNG is concerned, we recommend you go for a diesel car rather than get a CNG conversion done — CNG fits well with commercial requirements rather than personal usage.
I am planning to buy a new diesel SUV within a budget of Rs 18 to 22 lakh. My daily commute is 50 km, with a fortnightly trip to a hilly region. I have shortlisted the Skoda Yeti and Renault Koleos. While I like the Yeti because of its features and price, I have heard that there are a lot of dealer issues all over the country. Are there any other SUVs I ought to consider? Should I wait for the launch of Fiat-Chrysler Jeep in the country?
Dron Gupta, Jammu
Both the Yeti and the Koleos are capable vehicles, but in your case, we recommend another SUV — the Toyota Fortuner. For one, the Fortuner is well-built and extremely reliable. Plus there is the fact that sales and service of Toyota vehicles is usually hassle-free. The Fortuner will hold its value better than either of the two vehicles in your shortlist as well. As far as the launch of Jeep is concerned, it will take time for Fiat-Chrysler to put things in place, so you could always consider it later.
I have an average daily commute of 50 km and I am planning to buy a Volkswagen Polo or a Chevrolet Sail. Which of these cars should I buy? And will it be better for me to opt for the diesel version or should I just go in for a petrol car? My current car is a Maruti Suzuki Swift petrol.
Siddharth Kumar, via email
If you cover 50 km a day, a diesel hatchback makes sense. The Polo is a good car to drive — it looks great, and interior quality is excellent. The TDI is fuel efficient, though the three-cylinder motor can be slightly noisy, especially at start-up. Though rear space is a bit of a compromise, the car is great for self-driving applications. The Sail, on the other hand, is tremendous value for money. It looks nice, the diesel engine/gearbox combination is efficient, and there is plenty of leg room at the rear. Interior quality and features are a compromise with the Sail, while it is not a driving enthusiast's car either. Test drive both and see which you prefer.
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