Q & A with Hormazd Motoring

Tackling steering issues and more

I purchased a Maruti Suzuki Ignis Zeta AGS in March 2017 and am happy with the vehicle. It has also clocked over 24,500km. However, the steering does not return to the centre once you make a turn. As the vehicle is getting older, the problem has increased and I find it to be dangerous. Is this a common issue and can it be rectified?

S Raajkumar Kalingarayar, Coimbatore

The self-centering problem is not unique to your Ignis, but is a common issue in the first-generation version of the hatchback, owing to the design of the car’s steering geometry. The steering wheel does not automatically return to its straight position after making a U-turn, thereby demanding manual assistance from the driver. The solution lies in making alterations to the car’s caster angle as well as assistance from the power steering motor.

Though Maruti Suzuki India has not categorised this as a steering issue, and only identified it as general steering behaviour, the company has resolved it to a great extent in the facelifted version launched in 2020.

Therefore, it would be advisable to check with a Maruti Suzuki service centre if the relevant parts can be replaced from the updated model to your car with making the necessary mechanical tweaks to improve the steering’s behaviour.

I have a Skoda Superb 1.8 TSI and the increasing petrol rates have made it expensive to drive. I have no plans of selling it and am contemplating fitting a CNG kit. Should I go ahead? If yes, what are the things to keep in mind?

Ranveer, Ghaziabad

We advise you against any knee-jerk reaction to the recent rise in fuel prices and fitting a CNG kit in your Skoda Superb. The 1.8 TSI engine is a complex unit that also involves a turbocharger. Making the engine run on a dry fuel like CNG could cause extensive damage to its internals, including the valve seats, piston rings and cylinders. The risk of damage to these critical parts becomes high, given the age of the vehicle.

You will be losing out on the performance as well as driveability of the car, with increased load on various parts of the engine, transmission and suspension.

Hence, we do not recommend installing an aftermarket CNG kit in the Superb. But, if your daily running warrants a cheaper fuel, it is advisable to sell off the Superb and buy a new or used CNG car with a company-fitted kit.

Hormazd Sorabjee is the editor of Autocar India. Mail your feedback and queries to roadshow@thehindu.co.in

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Printable version | Jun 18, 2022 4:58:26 am | https://www.thehindu.com/life-and-style/motoring/tackling-steering-issues-and-more/article65236987.ece