I visited a Tata Motors showroom to see the Nano but I was smitten by the Xenon XT. I plan to buy it in April 2011. Does Tata plan to introduce a new version with a new engine and updated suspension?
The Xenon isn’t a very practical choice and clearly for those whose heart overrules the head. However, it is one of Tata Motors’ best products and made with a lot of parts that are meant for the export market. This is one reason why the price is high but so is the quality of most parts. Tata is unlikely to launch the Xenon with another engine in the future, especially since it has just the present model and that too in selective pockets.
I work in Bangalore and need to visit Chennai once or twice a month. Which car is suitable for this type of motoring? I have shortlisted the diesel Fiat Punto, Tata Indica Vista and the Maruti Ritz.
Go for the Grande Punto as it is the best of this lot on the highway and will make those trips to Chennai less stressful. The Grande Punto feels solid, has a terrific ride and is very stable at highway speeds. It’s a decent city car too and quite economical to run. If your budget allows, go in for the 90 bhp model which will make overtaking on the highway effortless.
Is it advisable to buy the Chevrolet Optra Magnum Diesel? Its sales figures haven’t been too good for the past few months. I fear GM India might discontinue the model, which could create a paucity of spares. Please advise.
K Umesh Rao
The Optra Magnum Diesel is an underrated car and good value for money. It has a strong, smooth engine and good cabin space. However, it’s quite dated now and a generation behind the competition. GM has just upgraded the Optra to BS IV specifications, which implies that it is unlikely to discontinue the Magnum. However, a car with poor demand has poor resale value.
I want to buy a new car priced between Rs 10-15 lakh. I like the Chevrolet Cruze. I will be buying it in November this year — is there any new car launch around that time?
There is no new launch in that price range. If you like the Cruze, go for it. It is the most powerful car in its class and you will enjoy driving it, especially on the highway.